Sex & Romance in Fantasy Gaming: Creating A Sensual Character (Now With A Generator!)



Autumn Eladrin by captdiablo

"Autumn Eladrin" by captdiablo (resized) is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 3.0


Characters have romantic and sexual dimensions, whether or not they've been in a relationship or engaged in sex. Even if they're not interested in these parts of life, they have predispositions, expectations, and feelings about them. You might not be aware of these things at first, and that's okay. You might discover them during play, during discussions with fellow players, or while writing game journals. But you can also develop them on purpose, as you would any other aspect of a character.

If you want food for thought, you'll find plenty below. Something here could inspire you to make a choice about a character or have a realization about their circumstances. If you want to cover a lot of ground quickly - for a player character, NPC, or a character in a fictional story - my generator can help you!

Generate A Character's Love Life

My Romantic Relationship Generator does a few things at once. First, it lets you know about a character's proclivities: sexual orientation, romantic orientation, and aspects they tend to be attracted to the most (like humor or a deep voice). It also establishes their love language (such as showing affection by spending quality time with someone) and something they desire right now (which may or may not affect their love life, but probably will).

At the same time, the generator will also create the details about one of the character's current relationships, as well as whether or not they're seeing anyone at all. If they are seeing someone, the generator will tell you how long they've been together, the type of relationship they're in (such as a rebound or no-strings affair), their status (dating, married, cohabiting) and the current condition of the relationship (flourishing, stable, stagnating, etc.). Finally, the generator will give an overview of the character's dating and marriage history, including whether they've been divorced or widowed.

Using my Medieval Character Generator first can give you a main character to flesh out, if you don't have one already in mind. Following up with the Romantic Relationship Generator can let you know a lot about the entanglements they're in. And if you want to know about their parents, siblings, and children, you can use my Medieval Character Background Generator next. I hope this can aid and inspire Game Masters and fantasy writers alike!

Here's what the generator results look like:

Preview of the Romantic Relationship Generator

What the Generator Covers

Sexual & Romantic Orientations

A good place to start adding layers to a character is with their internal drives. You might determine a character's sexual orientation and feel that it covers not just who they're sexually attracted to but also who they're interested in having romantic relations with. If so, that's fine. But considering their romantic orientation can help you add more nuance. The character could be sexually active but completely uninterested in romance. They might enjoy romance with only one group of people but be open to sex with other groups.

It can be good to think about how a character's sexuality has been received by others, and if you're a Dungeon Master, you might want to think about how different cultures handle orientation. Some societies might not care at all; if you're a citizen in good standing, who cares who you sleep with? A few cultures might not have much to say so long as members produce children during their lifetime. Other societies might punish one orientation harshly, or more harshly than others. The goal shouldn't be to torment a character for their player's choice or to ridicule one orientation, but to open up new adventures for the group. Maybe the PCs can make a difference in local laws and work to change cruel customs. But if the players aren't interested in dealing with such backlash, don't include it. Some gamers have struggled due to orientation in real life and want none of that in their fantasy, and that should be respected.

Consider the intersection of race and sexual orientation, as well. Do dwarves refuse to acknowledge gay children? Or do elves expect other elves to be bisexual, to the point that being gay or straight is ridiculed? Is it taboo to ask a halfling their preference unless you're looking to find out first-hand?

Some Suggestions

Since every gaming group is different, it's best to approach your group before adding orientation to the mix. Everyone should be comfortable with orientations being available and highlighted during play. If someone has a concern, the matter should be addressed. If a compromise can be reached, great! But if people can't come to a satisfying agreement, then it's best to wait until you can find a more flexible group.

If various orientations are available to players, it's a good idea to specify the line between players and their characters. After all, just because you play a character who's gay doesn't mean that you are or that you're curious about it. And it shouldn't matter which orientations players or characters have - when you play as a group, everyone deserves equal respect. If jokes are made, they shouldn't belittle anyone, and it's best not to make a character into a recurring joke because of being a particular orientation. It's up to everyone to foster respect at the table, no matter what comes up or how folks feel.

With all of that in mind, it can be easier to introduce sexual orientation into a game through NPCs. Non player characters are visible but aren't the focus of the campaign. Their lives and schemes are present but the player characters can choose not to engage them. NPC relationships are examples for how romance and sex play out in the world, but players don't have to follow suit with their characters.

Love Language & Everyday Desire

It can also be incredibly useful to figure out a character's love language - that is to say, how they prefer to express (and probably to receive) love and affection. Whether you believe there are 5 main ways people do this in real life doesn't really matter; it's a great tool for fiction and gaming. Their preference will affect how they approach others with romantic intentions and what they expect from others who are interested in them. Stories can take hilarious or even devastating turns when characters fail to understand each other's gestures.

Another thing to keep in mind is that characters have larger desires which may or may not be closely related to their love life but are likely to affect their relationships. A character who wants a leader to follow could look to a lover to fill that wish. A character who wants to raise their economic status could consider marriage an acceptable route to that end. And so on.

Current Relationship(s)

Is the character currently attached to someone, or more than one person? And how do they feel about the relationship(s) they're in? This information can shape a lot that goes on in social interactions and reveal sources of conflict. If a character's in a clingy relationship, their significant other might be around a lot. If the character hates it, they might be irritable when their partner won't leave them alone. If they're in some kind of sexual or romantic relationship, the character is probably going to make time to be with their partner(s), which could mean making time for a date night in the story or game session.

Please note: due to limitations, my relationship generator can only create one relationship for a character at a time. If they're in multiple relationships, you can choose results further down the list or create them from scratch yourself. (The generator is set to roll up 10 character backgrounds at a time by default.)


How long a current relationship has been going on can imply a lot of things. Characters who recently met and started dating probably don't know a lot about each other yet, whereas people who have been together for 20 years likely know most of each other's friends (or perhaps they don't; that could lead to some intriguing possibilities...).


Relationships can also begin with - or take on - their own kind of disposition. For instance, they can be based on fun, passion, or friendship; they might stand out because of a major age gap or being long-distance. This can influence how partners usually treat each other and what they expect out of their interactions, for better and worse: a fun lover who only wants a careless fling may not be able to provide the comfort their partner needs after a serious loss.


If a character is in a relationship, they will likely be dating, living together (which may imply more commitment than simply dating but not as much as marriage; your choice), engaged to be married, already married, or separated. Added to that is whether the people in that relationship are exclusive to each other or nonexclusive (consensually open to dating, having sex with, or loving others, depending on what they've agreed upon), or if there's cheating going on. In medieval settings, it can also be helpful to know if a marriage was arranged by others (parents, generally, but perhaps a matchmaker).


It can be useful to think about a relationship's current condition. Bonds and interactions can shift over time, sometimes dramatically. A flourishing marriage indicates growth, lots of sharing, and plentiful interactions; not only will the spouses feel this way, but others will probably notice it, too. A marriage that's falling apart indicates the opposite: decay of common interests and not spending time together (at least willingly).

How They Feel About Their Relationship

Once you've built the kind of relationship(s) a character is in, it's important to determine their predominant feeling about their bond(s). Overall, are they happy? Let down? Anxious? This estimation adds a whole new dimension to portraying a relationship in a game or a story. It will influence how they speak about, respond to, and pursue their partner(s). It can get even more interesting if you know how their partner(s) feel and have them act accordingly, even if they're at odds (or, in this case, especially when they're at odds).

Sexual & Romantic History

History always matters; it influences what follows. The same can be said of relationship and sexual histories. Those who engaged in sex and/or romance in the past learned things in the process, for better and worse. Prior engagements can shape characters' attitudes and goals. They also involve other characters who might show up again. As a writer or Dungeon Master, you can never underestimate the impact of an old flame, a bitter ex, or the one who got away. That person can spice up just about any scene, so it's worth thinking about how the character feels about the relationships and people they used to be part of.

Please note: the generator reveals the overall feeling a character has about their history, not how they feel about individual exes. You can look further down the list of results and pick how they feel for each ex from there, or decide on your own.

Virginity & Chastity

Characters who haven't been in sensual or romantic relationships have their reasons and other activities they spent their time on, and these things are worth knowing. Virginity and chastity don't have to mean anything special in your setting or to a character's culture, but they might. How fictional people feel about not having sex is up to you, but it's worth thinking about what they say they approve or disapprove of, how they actually feel, and why. Are moral values even applied to these things in your fantasy world? Because they don't have to be unless you - and your group, if you're gaming - want it that way.

When it comes to tabletop players, there's a wide range of feelings about abstaining from sex and they can be quite strong, so it's best to treat these issues with care and respect. If a player wants their character to be asexual or aromantic, that could be their way of signaling that they're not interested in those elements in a campaign. It's best to make sure they're comfortable with sex and romance in the game. If they are but don't want to partake in it with their character, see if that works for the group. Unless it makes someone uncomfortable and they won't compromise, there shouldn't be a problem. An abstaining character is a character; as long as they have their reasons for being in the story and find their way to fit, there's no reason to leave them out.

A Word of Warning for DMs

DMs, please avoid regularly threatening, torturing, and killing NPCs the PCs care about, including those in their backstories. Few things embitter players like having a DM methodically destroy all the NPCs that matter to their characters. It's not fun, it's not fair, and it's not necessary. If you don't want to use NPCs from a player character's backstory, say that. If you don't want to spend a lot of time on interpersonal scenes with NPCs, say so. If portraying a PC's lover makes you uncomfortable, speak up. If you don't really want to handle romance or sex in a game, make it clear. It's better than making others regret playing at your table because you wouldn't be up front about your desires.

Other Considerations

Let's touch on some aspects that aren't part of my Romantic Relationship Generator.


A character's alignment is bound to affect their romantic and sexual attitudes, feelings, and conduct. Rather than trying to cover every alignment combination, let's look at the major outlooks.

Follow the Steps

Lawful characters are more likely to avoid forbidden sexual acts (which are often met with harsh penalties and public humiliation in strongly lawful societies, when discovered). They're also more likely to bow to the wishes of authority figures when it comes to acceptable partners and relationships. If they can't convince their family that their sweetheart is worthwhile, they'll give up on their own wishes - because a broken heart is more bearable than going against their kin. Lawful characters may be less likely to cheat on or neglect their romantic partners, but they are never immune. Anyone can discover their Achilles heel is a person and rationalize time away from their obligations. Likewise, they are probably more likely to accept responsibility if children are conceived. It's not impossible for them to flee, but it's harder for them not to regret it if they do.

Break Free

Chaotic characters are probably more experimental and willing to try things that are taboo in their society - and if they really like it, they'll find a way to keep doing it, laws and clicking tongues be damned. They will defy those who try to deny them a person or experience they deeply crave. They are more willing to displease their family members, leave home, or move to a new town altogether to get their way. Chaotic characters may be more likely to engage in open relationships and grant partners more independence, particularly when they value other people's freedom, too. This doesn't mean that chaotic characters can't be monogamous, but it does mean that they'll need compelling reasons to stay with one person and love alone may not be enough. They may be more willing to use birth control when they know they don't want children so nothing gets in the way of how they wish to live. They won't automatically reject children that result from their escapades but they may have more trouble adjusting to all the obligations that come with parenthood.

Give Your All

Good characters are often attentive lovers and partners. They are willing to give love and pleasure freely because they want to, not because they're expecting something in return. They'll probably avoid transactional encounters for that reason. They are more likely to have direct conversations, ask for consent, and check in as a relationship proceeds because good characters genuinely care. Perhaps one of their greater risks is focusing too much on what others wish to the point that they can't express - or aren't sure about - their own desires. Another common pitfall is when good characters hurt themselves by giving too much. They aren't more likely to be monogamous or to focus their romantic life on producing children, but they tend to give everything to partners and kids, when they have them. And when they hurt others, good characters will try to make amends - and suffer deeply if they lose relationships they gave so much to.

Take What You Want

Let's get this out of the way: not every evil character is a rapist. They seek their own pleasure first and foremost, but that doesn't mean they'll completely ignore what others want (or social norms and laws). They can be quite up front about their desires and move on if someone isn't interested. They're more willing to be cruel to get their way but they probably won't be cruel all the time. This is especially true if an evil character has reasons to value a partner and doesn't want to be utterly hated. They'll resort to manipulation if they need to; they might switch their approach seemingly at random, being loving one day and cold the next. They'll pursue taboos or infidelity if they wish, and they probably won't feel bad about it. Whether they choose one partner or many, and how they relate to those characters, depends on what appeals to their vanity. If an evil character can find someone who will worship, tend, and obey them, great. But the more their partner(s) oppose them, the more their relationships become swamped with negative emotions like jealousy, resentment, disappointment, and fear. Similar may be said of evil characters as parents, unfortunately.

Take It Or Leave It

Neutral characters engage in relationships with others based on the needs of the moment. If they feel lonely, they seek company; if they're lustful, they seek release. They may tend toward monogamy or purely sexual liaisons to avoid overextending themselves or failing to hold up their end of a relationship. But neutral characters are more likely to be asexual and aromantic if they deem those experiences to be unimportant to their lives. They judge forbidden acts based on how they enrich life and participate accordingly, without worrying about morals. They expect partners to be able to pull their own weight and may have an easier time cutting ties when a relationship no longer serves them. Upon discovering a conception, neutral characters decide how to proceed based on what seems best for their own survival, as well as a partner's and their child's. If they can't provide much or are in danger, they may opt for abortion, adoption, or abandonment. If they believe they can enhance their child's life and vice versa, they will take on a parent's role - and only then.

Since alignments in D&D are composed of two elements - law, chaos, or neutrality and goodness, evil, or neutrality - these loose guidelines should be considered accordingly and blended with your own predilections and needs.


A character's race and racial culture can also influence their feelings and conduct. Just how that plays out depends on the race and how it operates in your game or story. If dwarves are usually traditional, private, and reliable, you could decide that they tend toward monogamy for life (though they might be expected to rebel in their youth). The following aspects can have a pronounced effect on sexual mores and romantic expectations, so you should consider them carefully for races and cultures at the forefront of your story or campaign:


A race tied to a particular environment will be shaped by it, if only through customs. Dwarves who are used to spending months in silent tunnels could be masters at keeping quiet during sex, and might hold moans of pleasure to be taboo. Their courtship rituals could involve secretly delivering gifts of increasingly great value, until the receiver is expected to guess who their admirer is while they are hidden nearby. If they guess correctly, they're on the way to getting engaged; if they guess incorrectly, they must return the gifts and the inquiry quietly ends.

Elves who live in breezy tree houses, on the other hand, might have sex freely, since there's nothing shameful about it, privacy is difficult to come by, and they've seen it all already. They might have a ritual in which all single or nonexclusive elves hide their names in origami butterflies they create themselves. Then, they secretly deliver their creations to the clergy of the goddess of love. During the feast at the start of spring, the butterflies are placed inside the stomach of the statue of the goddess of love, which is imbued with a special wind spell. Each participant must kiss the statue and catch whichever paper butterflies come out when she opens her mouth. Sometimes only one butterfly flies free; other times, more than one is ejected.


Likewise, history can take a toll on people. If half-orcs have been shunned and hunted for centuries, they might mate with any other half-orcs they meet so they can experience some interludes of pleasure and safety. If halfling populations have dropped terribly because of famine and war, they might look down on purely recreational sex for a while and offer incentives to new parents. Races that are spread across different regions will probably break some racial stereotypes in favor of local events.


If an alignment is associated with a race, it will probably impact sexual practices. You can imagine how alignment affects marriage expectations and other romantic aspects. You might also want to ponder how your character's alignment has come into contact with the alignment of their race.

For example, in one game I ran, Grabthroat Shinkicker was a dwarf who left the mines young and fell in love with the sea, of all things. He always stood out at home because he didn't like to follow ironclad rules, and his chaotic good alignment matched his freewheeling sexuality. Not only did he have a lover in every port, but he liked to experiment with different races and was dead set against getting married. Many other dwarves thought he'd spent too much time with humans, or pitied him as a lonely man with no understanding of the finer things in life. Grabthroat got pretty sick of those attitudes and generally preferred other races to his own until he met a dwarven cleric who saw him for the good dwarf he was.


It's difficult enough for humans to create lasting bonds, and they're only given a maximum of 70 + 2d20 years to live. It's quite another thing to face the prospect of lifelong commitment and fidelity when you're an elf; you reach adulthood at 110, but can live up to 350 + 4d% years in total. That's a long time to spend with anyone. That's a long time to argue and separate and be tempted – as well as to grow bored and experiment. While some longer-lived races might still expect exclusivity from their members, others will be open to serial monogamy, polyamory, temporary marriage, or other arrangements. And while some races will have their taboos, others will accept a wide variety of sexual practices – if only to pass the time more enjoyably.

Relations with Other Races

If races are known to be steadfast allies, they might also be regular lovers. Half-elves stand as proof of the fascination that flares up between humans and elves. Gnomes and halflings often find their lots thrown in together, and since they're the same size in a world of larger people, they can easily pair up for fun. Whether or not children can result will largely depend on their type (see the Pregnancy section for more details).


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