Fifth Edition Initiative Cards

Fifth Edition Initiative Cards

This week, DnD5e.info presents an update to the Initiative Cards that were published by The Game Mechanics. Unfortunately, their original cards are no longer available but I have copies that they originally released. I have made the minor changes to update them to 5th Edition and present them for use.

The Game Mechanics made the original instructions Open Game Content so I will leave it to them to explain how to use the cards (suitably modified for 5th Edition). In keeping with the generous nature of the original authors, the text in quotes is Open Game Content.

Initiative Cards in Play

Before beginning play, print and fill out as many character cards as you need for the player characters, and print as many other cards as you need for monsters and/or NPCs.

When combat begins, ask the players to roll initiative while you roll initiative for any opponents and non-player characters. Set aside any cards for characters or creatures that are surprised. One by one, go around the table and ask each player for his or her character’s initiative result. Write their initiative numbers down in the space marked “INIT” on the cards. Then do the same for all the initiative rolls you make. Use a pencil—you’ll be erasing and rewriting these numbers fairly often.

Then simply begin at the top of the stack, moving each card to the bottom when that character or creature has concluded its turn. When you once again reach the first card in the initiative order, if anyone has not yet rolled initiative, ask them to roll for initiative now. Then jot down their initiative numbers, and place their cards in the proper place in the initiative order.

If a character or creature readies an action, turn that Initiative Card sideways, with the “Ready” box showing. If a character or creature falls unconscious, simply turn the card sideways facing the other direction, with the word “Unconscious” visible.

There are two boxes with “SAVE” in grey above them. These are for the characters saves (writing the type of save over the grey “SAVE”). Additional saves can be noted in the “SPECIAL/NOTES” section.

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