When to Italicize and Capitalize (DnD Guideline)

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The following are guidelines based on general observations from official WotC D&D products.

When to Italicize

Spells, powers, spell-like abilities, and psi-like abilities, such as greater teleport, should be italicized. Other special abilities in themselves should not be italicized (even if they mimic a spell of the same name, such as a balor's true seeing ability), but may be italicized if they used as certain type of heading. (See the following paragraph.)

Sub-headings under bold in-line headings (e.g. the individual class feature and special ability headings) should be italicized (and in-line). The lycanthrope’s special qualities section and the rogue’s special abilities section are prime examples of this.

Names of magic and psionic items should be italicized, such as ring of wizardry II, and potion of bear's endurance. Nonmagical and nonpsionic items made out of special materials, such as adamantine breastplate should not be italicized.

Sourcebook names should be italicized (Dragon Magic).

When to Capitalize[edit]

The following should always be capitalized:

The following should always follow the same rules for capitalization as if you were writing a term paper for class (i.e. the beginning of a sentence, titles and headings, proper nouns, acronyms, etc...):

  • Alignments (lawful good)
  • Spells and powers (mage's disjunction and Mordenkainen’s disjunction)
  • Special abilities (energy drain)
  • Classes (rogue, monk, and barbarian)
  • Magic and psionic items (tome of understanding) except for one of a kind artifacts
  • Mundane items (monk's outfit)
  • Races (dwarf and elves) and creatures (frost giant)
  • Named bonuses (dodge, deflection, and circumstantial)
  • Spell schools (necromancy) and subschools (healing)
  • Power disciplines (clairsentience) and subdisciplines (scrying)
  • Spell and power descriptors (force)
  • Types (aberration) and subtypes (goblinoid) outside of older stat block formats and ones inside the new stat block format

The following should never be capitalized2:

  • The unit indicating die size (10d6 and d20 System Reference Document)


  1. This is an exception to the WotC format, in that WotC treats abilities in class tables as sentences and only the first word is capitalized. The decision for this exception was made by the D&D wiki community in the interest of aesthetics.
  2. A limitation of MediaWiki is that the first character of every page title (provided it's a letter) is capitalized.



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