D&D Random Encounter Tables 5e ++ Guide

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This page is a collection of all the D&D random encounter posts I have created. Feel free to use them in your Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, or other tabletop role-playing game campaign. Be sure to bookmark this page as I will be updating it with more random tables goodness. Thanks for reading, and I hope you find these D&D random encounter tables useful for all your RPG needs. Reach out on Twitter @litrpgform if you have any ideas for this site or just want to say hello. I’ve also started two new websites – Random Tables RPG and Random Encounters AI – that both have even more great tabletop RPG content.

Fantasy RPG Random Tables Books


Make life as a Game Master easier…. If you play Dungeon & Dragons, Pathfinder, or other fantasy tabletop role-playing games, this RPG random tables book is full of encounters, NPCs, and more. Available as an eBook or in a classic print format. Either way, you’ll have a wealth of adventure ideas at your fingertips.


Various D&D Random Encounter Table 5e Guides

This is a list of the D&D Random Encounter Tables I have created. Feel free to use them in your own campaign. You might need to make some adjustments, but they should give you some good ideas.

Fantasy Random Encounter Table 5e

I’ve split my fantasy random encounter tables into several sections.

Random Table Swamp Encounters

  • 1d20 Random Swamp Encounters – This is a list of 20 random encounters in a swamp. They are fairly generic, but they can come together to tell a unified story with a bit of work on the DM’s part. Each description is about a hundred words or so. Some NPC data is included.
  • Non-Combat Swamp Encounters: 1d100 – This is a huge list of 100 unique encounters in a swamp. There are a few details that could lead to a larger adventure or campaign, but the DM will need to flesh them out. Overall, it’s a comprehensive list for non-combat encounters in a swamp.

Random Table Forest Encounters

  • 1d20 Random Forest Encounters – These all take place in the “Black Forest,” an area that can be plopped into your world. The list includes 20 D&D random encounters for a forest setting. A brief description of the area and descriptions of 8 NPCs is also included.
  • NEW! D&D Random Woods Encounter (D100) – A list of 100 encounters for a forest. Mostly non-combat, there’s a good mix of starters to get ideas flowing if your players are traveling through the woods and need something interesting to come across on a random encounter.
dnd-Forest-Encounter-Ideas
D&D Random Forest Encounters

Random City Encounters

  • d100 Encounters in a Fantasy City – This is a massive random encounter table with 100 unique and interesting encounters in a large, magical city. Players will be kept on their toes with some of these encounters. There is a small cast of characters in this resource.
  • NEW! 100 Non-Combat Random Fantasy City Encounters – 88) As players walk by, a cart has an accident, spilling its contents into the road. The man was transporting fish, and they’re beginning to smell. 89) A blacksmith is working at his forge. 90) A young man is practicing his sword-fighting. 91) Players walk by a group of people. One of them is a fortune teller.
  • NEW! 100 Random Low-Level Fantasy Forest Encounters – A traveling magician is looking for an audience to practice his latest trick. He offers to show his trick to the party. It turns out to be a magical illusion that allows him to hide his staff and cloak under a cloak. His name is Adrik Fecksword. He is an entertaining fellow who is witty and well-liked. He says he is willing to join the party if they have room for him.

Fantasy RPG Random Tables Books


Make life as a Game Master easier…. If you play Dungeon & Dragons, Pathfinder, or other fantasy tabletop role-playing games, this RPG random tables book is full of encounters, NPCs, and more. Available as an eBook or in a classic print format. Either way, you’ll have a wealth of adventure ideas at your fingertips.


Non-Combat Random Encounter Tables

  • Non-Combat Random Encounter Table – This D&D random encounter table includes 20 items for players in the wilderness. They are generic, but a creative DM can easily flesh them out. This is one of an ongoing series of D&D random encounter tables I’m creating. Enjoy!
  • NEW! 100 Non-Combat Random Fantasy City Encounters – 88) As players walk by, a cart has an accident, spilling its contents into the road. The man was transporting fish, and they’re beginning to smell. 89) A blacksmith is working at his forge. 90) A young man is practicing his sword-fighting. 91) Players walk by a group of people. One of them is a fortune teller.

General Wilderness Encounters

  • Random Wilderness Encounters: D&D 5e – A list of twenty interesting and unique wilderness encounters for your fantasy tabletop campaign. While
  • NEW! More Random Wilderness Encounters: D&D 5e – Another list of random wilderness encounters free that you can check out online right now. One is for general wilderness encounters, and the other list of twenty is for plains encounters in the wilderness.

Random Jungle Encounter Tables

  • NEW! D&D Random Jungle Encounters (d100) – Another great d100 list of encounters. This time, they’re in the jungle. While it’s not a super popular location for fantasy campaigns, it has a lot to offer. Check out this list of random jungle encounters and let us know what you think.
Random Jungle Encounters
Random Jungle Encounters

Random Road Encounter Tables

  • NEW! 100 Mid-Level Random Road Encounters – The road ahead splits into two, and you find a bearded old man sitting by a small campfire beside the road. He introduces himself as an ancient hermit and says he’s been waiting for adventurers to come by and help him with a problem, and offers you a reward if you’ll listen to his story. He needs the players to kill a mid-level bandit nearby who killed his son. If players accept, he will not be able to pay them in material possessions, but he will help them with information about the local area.

Random People Tables

  • NEW!10 Tavern Patrons for Fantasy RPG – Jess is a skilled thief. Her gear is always top notch and she wears a real fur cloak. She has long brown hair and big brown eyes. She will be drinking Dwarven ale and be quite drunk when players first encounter her – no matter the time of day or night.

Modern Random Encounter Tables

Random Encounter Tables FAQ

Here’s some frequently asked questions (and answers) about random encounter tables in D&D 5e and other fantasy tabletop RPG campaigns.

How do random encounters work in DND?

Basically, you or the DM will roll a die depending on the size of the random table. It can be as small as a d4 (or even a d2 if you flip a coin) or as complex as d100. You’ll basically roll then consult the list of random tables RPG to find out what happens to the players. A good DM will sometimes fudge the results if its better for the players, but it can be a great way to stir the imagination.

Are random encounters good for DND?

Yes! If DMs and players aren’t taking them as absolute gospel and not swaying from them when necessary, random encounters can be a great way to spice up an otherwise boring overland journey. They’re also a way for the DM to add a little flavor to a dungeon with a special encounter. Good random tables will have just enough information to get the DM going.

How do I get a random encounter?

You can search google of course, but if you want nearly a hundred different options to check out for free, go to Random Tables RPG and browse around. I’ve split it up for fantasy, modern, and science-fiction tabletop settings. You’re sure to find something. The good news is that I also run that site, and I’ve decided to keep publishing free content to the web for gamers everywhere.

If you’d like to support my efforts in teaching RPG to AI, you can buy my random tables RPG book at Amazon. I’ve actually got quite a few RPG guide books for sale if you’re looking for cheap, creative content to spice up your campaign. If you’ve wondered, “How do I get a random encounter?” Now you know! Check out the website above or head to Amazon and one-click a book or two.

How do you make random encounters more fun in D&D?

I cast, “Video Answer!”

How often do you roll random encounters?

Once again, this is subjective and up to your DM, but in general, one to two encounters every 4 to 8 hours of game time is reasonable. You might want to increase or decrease this number depending on circumstances with your particular group of players. As a rule of thumb, you don’t want to become too reliant on random encounters to fill your time at the table!

More Random Encounter Table 5e Goodness?

Check out these random encounter table 5e books I’ve put together. Available on Amazon in ebook and print, there’s three fantasy random tables books available now with more to come soon. You can purchase my random tables books all for a low price.


Spread the love, earn +42 xp...

Fantasy RPG Random Tables Books


Make life as a Game Master easier.... If you play Dungeon & Dragons, Pathfinder, or other fantasy tabletop role-playing games, this RPG random tables book is full of encounters, NPCs, and more. Available as an eBook or in a classic print format. Either way, you'll have a wealth of adventure ideas at your fingertips.