D&D Phobias and Character Birthdays

D&D Phobias

As a DM I have been compiling a list of phobias that are suitable for characters in D&D games. I appreciate it when players go through the process of giving their character a phobia and roleplaying it accordingly. They totally deserve more XP for roleplaying a phobia in my opinion.

In my Friday campaign I have made picking a phobia mandatory during character creation, and I am even planning to introduce several important NPCs and a villain who have phobias too, so that their characters are well rounded.

I do advise my players to not pick ridiculous phobias however. Like the Fear of Trees or something that would drastically interfere with their ability to go on adventures in the wilderness.

In the Friday campaign player response to the phobias has been very positive, with PCs even having fun playing pranks on each other with respect to their individual phobias. "There's a spider behind you!" and so forth.

Acrophobia - Fear of heights of 15 feet or more.
Aerophobia - Fear of drafts, poisonous gases and wind.
Agoraphobia - Fear of open spaces.
Ailurophobia - Fear of cats or cat-like creatures.
Arachnophobia - Fear of spiders.
Aquaphobia - Fear of swimming in bodies of water.
Astraphobia - Fear of thunder and lightning.
Claustrophobia - Fear of enclosed spaces.
Cynophobia - Fear of canines or canine-like creatures.
Daemonophobia - Fear of demons and devil-like creatures.
Dracophobia - Fear of dragons and dragon-like creatures.
Glossophobia - Fear of public speaking.
Herpetophobia - Fear of reptilians or reptilian-like creatures.
Hydrophobia - Fear of water.
Hylophobia - Fear of the woods and forests.
Lupophobia - Fear of wolves and wolf-like creatures.
Myxophobia - Fear of slimy things.
Necrophobia - Fear of corpses or undead.
Nyctophobia - Fear of darkness or the night.
Ophidiophobia - Fear of snakes or snake-like creatures.
Phasmophobia - Fear of ghosts, spectres and undead spirits.
Pyrophobia - Fear of fire.
Ranidaphobia - Fear of frogs and amphibian creatures.
Sanguivoriphobia - Fear of vampires and blood-drinking creatures.
Sciophobia - Fear of shadows and shadowy places.
Tetraphobia - Fear of monsters and deformed creatures.
Thanatophobia - Fear of death and dying.
Ursophobia - Fear of bears and ursine creatures.
Wiccaphobia - Fear of magic and witchcraft.
Xenophobia - Fear of strangers / foreigners.

Character Birthdays

Another thing I have implemented in the Friday campaign is character birthdays. Mostly so we can track the age of characters as the years go by, but there are also side benefits:

  • PCs give other PCs gifts. This creates stronger bonds between the different characters, which influences their decisions during combat and roleplaying.
  • NPCs give other PCs gifts too. Even if it just small things like food, smoking pipes, musical instruments, a new saddle, things like that add a lot of flavour and detail to the game.
  • Excuse for the characters to have a party at the local tavern whenever a birthday occurs.
Having birthdays also means you need to invent a calendar for the months of the year, etc. Since my campaign is set in Korovia, I use the Korovian Calendar.

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