Player Workflow Guide

This Guide is to help you, a role-player or character creator, use World Anvil to its maximum potential. This page does not dictate how you must use World Anvil; instead, it gives you a suggested workflow so to get you on your feet and to get you acquainted with the features and tools available to you.   World Anvil allows you to track and manage your character both during sessions and between them. Additionally, it lets you interact with other characters and write session journals from your character's point of view.   Within World Anvil, these characters are referred to as Heroes. All the features related to Heroes are referred to as the Hero's Suite.

Let's do it!


1. Create a Hero

When you create your account, you'll be given the option to choose between activating the worldbuilding suite or Heroes (the character and campaign management tool). Choose the latter clicking on the big "Create your Hero" image. If you forgot to click on this option when you created your account, you can always access the character creation page from the left side bar anyway.  
create character.png

2. Edit your Hero's Profile

When you finish the previous step, you will access your character's profile, which includes some social features (but we'll get to that later on). To edit the character's profile, click the Edit button under the character's short bio. The profile editing page has two tabs (three if you are an Epic Hero): basic and extended profile. In short, the basic profile will appear in the "bio box" in the left side of the character's profile, while the extended profile appears in the About tab of the profile. Fill in the fields you want (empty fields will just not appear in the profile), save the profile, and you're all set!  
character edit profile.png

3. Create Posts and Journals

Heroes is designed around a social experience for your characters. The social features are completely optional, but can be quite useful for both role-players and writers. A player might use them to interact with their party mates between sessions, while a writer could use them to develop a voice for a character through posts. Whatever your use case, here are some things you can keep in mind:  
character write post.png
  • There are different post types, each one with its own features. Use them to add more variation to your profile! You can also use the Out of Character post type to write a post from your own point of view (and not from the character's)
  • Journals Entries are long-form posts; use them to write about the events that happened in the last session from your character's perspective!
  • You can set individual posts to be private, in case you want to test something or just write a post that is only for your eyes.
  • Achievement posts and Journal entries will appear in a timeline located in the History tab —very useful to recall past events of your character's life! Journals and images also have their own tabs.

4. Create your Character Sheet

To create the character sheet for your character, make sure that you have an RPG system selected in the basic profile. Under the system drop-down, you will find a link labelled as "Choose your character sheet" —click it (you can also access the character sheet creation page from the Statblocks option in the sidebar). In the next page, choose the character sheet template for the system you want to use in the first drop-down. If you already created a character sheet and want to link it to the character, use the second drop-down. Have fun filling it out!  
character edit sheet.png
  When you are all set, ask your GM for the invitation link to the campaign and access it from your account! The link will add you (and anyone who accesses it) as players to the campaign.     

5. Let's play

If the GM of the campaign you are playing in is also using World Anvil, you will be able to use some neat tools to help you keep track of everything! When the GM starts a session, you will see a button that will take you to the session live screen. The live screen has different utilities, including a virtual dice roller, a stats tracker, a party management screen, and more. You can find detailed instructions on how to use it in the Guide to Playing a Session, but in short:
  • Use the Scrapbook to take notes during the session. If you are a Guild member, you can also use the Notebook, which is available outside the live screen and available between sessions.
  • Use the Equipment tab to track the items that your character is carrying.
  • Even though physical dice are shiny, the live screen also has a standard dice roller where the results of the rolls are sent to the GM and the rest of players.
  • Use the trackable character sheet to track values such as your character's hit points or spell slots on the fly. The changes will be saved to the main character sheet.
  • Use the party menu to see and manage the quests that your party is currently trying to complete.
player live screen.png
  Although the live screen is only accessible during a session, all changes you make through this screen will be saved and accessible in between session as well (mainly through your character sheet).     

6. After the session

After the session ends, you can polish your notes and put them in a journal entry so that you remember what happened in past sessions and your fellow players and GM can read through the experiences of your character from the character's own eyes. You can also use the social features to interact with the posts that other players publish, and if there are long periods of downtime between sessions, you can tell what your character is doing using posts!  

Other Workflow Guides

As this Codex progresses, we will add additional workflows for different styles of World Anvil users. Until then, feel free to ask any questions in the comments below and we will respond ASAP!


Please Login in order to comment!
24 Feb, 2020 16:34

How do I disable Heroes? Or how to I access all of my original data? All of my saved data disappeared when I changed to Heoeos. I would really like it back!

28 Feb, 2020 14:30

Hi! Can you please clarify? What do you mean by "changed to Heroes"? And which data are you referring to? Heroes is just one feature of World Anvil, so you should be able to access everything for the left sidebar. Thanks!

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.
29 Feb, 2020 14:43

Some time after I joined, the HERO button appeared. Being curious, I clicked it, explored it, and clicked back to the original database. One day while I was looking at the HEROs section, I no longer had the ability to click back to the original database, which is where all of the articles, characters, and et cetera that I had created are residing. If there is a link in to left sidebar that I am overlooking, please let me know what I am doing wrong. Thank you.

2 Mar, 2020 07:23

Left side bar, Settings, Account Details ( ), scroll down to DETAILS. YOu probably enabled the HERO only mode and the other features are disabled here. Click those bars ("World building features" etc) to reenable them.

-- Tillerz, Alana
1 Jul, 2020 14:24

How do you handle having 2 spell caster classes and dealing with spells per day and spells known? I'm not sure how to do that on the character sheet.

1 Jul, 2020 20:22

Assuming you are talking about dnd 5e, I just added the spell blocks in my character sheet's spellbook. I excluded the spells that I don't know, even if they are in my class's spell list. Hope this helps!

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.
3 Jul, 2020 05:25

I should have specified. Pathfinder 1st edition. Thanks for your help.

3 Jul, 2020 12:05

I've got no experience with this character sheet, but I'm sure that if you join our Discord server someone in the community will be able to help you ^^

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.
9 Jul, 2020 14:07

Suggestions: ‘After the Session -> Journal Entry’ should be a BIG button for players to notice, so they enter journal entries for the session. There should be a way for players to visit sessions as well, and ‘Journal Entry’ should be a BIG button specific to that session (i.e., already auto-attach Journal Entry to that session). The Player view of session also shows all the journal entries. Ideally, other entries could be moved (converted) to Journal Entries for a session.

10 Jul, 2020 09:59

Hi! Feel free to suggest that as a feature using the form that you'll find here ("Do you need help?" link in the footer). You'll have to create a separate account for that because the feature request/bug tracker is a third-party service.

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.
19 Nov, 2020 18:31

Some other help documents refer to the "Message Center" so players and the storyteller can send private messages, but I can't seem to find the icon for the Message Center in the place that is shown in those articles. Was this feature removed? And if so, how do we send private messages between people in a campaign? Thanks!

19 Nov, 2020 19:04

Hi! This feature was removed (it caused errors) and there's no replacement as of yet. Where did you find mentions to the Message Center? I hunted them down to update the guides but I might have missed some.

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.
19 Nov, 2020 21:59

Looks like "Introduction to Heroes" here has it:   Also, in the screenshot on this page under "Let's Play", you can see a mail icon, which implies you can do messaging, though there's no mention of it in the actual article.

12 Dec, 2020 21:00

I've noticed after creating a hero when you go to view the Hero's profile, it doesn't list the species field even though that was filled out. Is that something that has to be toggled on/off somehow?

13 Dec, 2020 12:33

There's no toggle as far as I know, so it should appear in either the basic or extended profile. Are you sure you saved the profile after adding the species?

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.
24 Dec, 2020 14:57

Bonjour, je rencontre un problème: mon MJ s'est crée un monde sur World Anvil, et on doit ajouter nos personnages à ce monde. J'ai crée ma fiche personnage, mais impossible de trouver comment transférer ma fiche perso à son monde à lui ? Merci pour votre aide

24 Dec, 2020 14:58

Hello, I'm having a problem: my GM has created a world for himself on World Anvil, and we need to add our characters to this world. I created my character file, but can't find how to transfer my personal file to his world? Thanks for your help

29 Dec, 2020 19:36

Hi WA Team! How can I create a PC and assign it to one of my players? When I click on the "Transfer Ownership" button, I can't see the players I've invited using the link on the Protagonists page... Do they have to create a dummy PC first and then I'll be bale to assign the PC I've created for them? Thanks in advance for your help!

30 Dec, 2020 11:54

Hi! Typing in their WA username in the "Receiver's username" should transfer the character to their account. Just make sure to type it correctly!

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.
16 Jan, 2021 17:04


29 Jan, 2021 18:24

Hi all - I've just created a world and campaign, and gathering my players into it. One of the things I also did is set my world to have a given date (call it 1000 AW). One of my players would like to start writing journal entries, but date them a couple years prior to the date set for the campaign/world (e.g. 993 AW he wants a journal entry). How can that person do this, or how can I adjust things on my end as the world creator to allow them to do this?

30 Jan, 2021 11:27

You don't need to do anything! The journal editor has a date field at the bottom, and it's freeform. If they click the small "Advanced" button, they can set the day, month, and year individually so that they appear ordered by date. Hope this helps!

Creator of Black Light, a science-fantasy universe.