One of the most popular character classes in Dungeons and Dragons is the barbarian. If you are interested in dressing up as this character, we hope to walk you through the background and aesthetic of a D&D barbarian. This post looks at the overall aspects of the barbarian character class, some popular aesthetic choices, and a few outfit inspirations.
At the start of Dungeons and Dragons, the barbarian was based heavily on Conan the Barbarian. This character class focuses on defensive powers and the idea of battle rage or thriving in the chaos of battle.
The barbarian has the option of different paths. These paths include the Path of the Berserker and the Path of the Totem Warrior. The berserker focuses on increasing a barbarians rage for more savage attacks, while the totem warrior includes animal attributes to their character. Additional sources have included paths such as the Storm Herald, Zealot, Beast, Wild Magic, and Battlerager. Our outfit inspirations will provide a good basis for any of these paths.
A common theme for barbarian characters is up-close melee fighting. They often choose heavy weapons designed to deal greater damage. The barbarian class gives characters access to a boost in speed, a boost in defense when unarmored, and a rage ability which increases damage they deal while decreasing damage they take. With these boosts in mind, you can pick and choose items based more on their aesthetic rather than their theoretical offensive or defensive capabilities.
There are certain popular choices of aesthetics when it comes to dressing as a D&D barbarian. Often, the design of a barbarians outfit focuses on the theoretical climate of the barbarian. If a barbarian is from a cold climate, then they tend to wear fur. The amount varies but usually appears somewhere on their outfit. Meanwhile, if the barbarian is from a warmer climate or can tolerate cooler weather, then they often tend to show more skin. This can appear with shorts and sleeveless tops for example.
The typical styles tend towards certain real-world cultures or general aesthetics. For example, many barbarians often dress like the Vikings or the Ancient Celts. Steppe styles, often referencing Genghis Khan, are also popular. A fourth option is a mixture of aspects from different tribes, often from Africa. Regardless of the real-world source of aesthetic, a popular theme is the use of leather. Leather is a highly popular material when it comes to the style of a barbarian. Finally, another popular aspect of a barbarian warrior in Dungeons and Dragons is that they tend to wield large, heavy weapons. Swords and axes are popular choices.
D&D Barbarian Outfit Inspiration
As mentioned earlier, the outfit a barbarian wears often depends on the environment that they are from. There are a few options to look at. For example, a female barbarian may want to wear something like the Elyona Canvas Tunic with the Philipp Canvas Trousers or another shirt with the Nuala Suede Leather Skirt. The pants are easier for layering with other pieces for a cooler weather outfit, while the skirt may work better for a warmer weather outfit. Again, the desired layering or level of visible skin is up to you.
For a male barbarian, we give the Godwin Canvas Tunic with the Kilian Canvas Short Trousers as an option. This option is ideal for warm weather, but the Phillip Canvas Trousers can also be worn by men as well as another option.
To finish off either outfit, some footwear is a good idea. A couple of options are the Villager Boots or wearing the Viking Fur Leg Wraps with the Osberg Viking Boots. You could also add some outerwear as well such as a cape or cloak.
Armour and Weapons
Because barbarians do not necessarily have to wear armour to be well defended, often their armour choices can focus more on the way they look. Again, leather is easily one of the most common choices. The Kendra Ladies Cuirass with the Tenebra Armour Skirt makes one option. Meanwhile, the RFB Fighter Leather Armour Set is another option. Either option works well for a barbarian. While neither of these options include shoulder armour, pauldrons and spaulders are possibilities that are common among barbarians. They are often large and can have an asymmetrical look if desired.
With a D&D barbarian, the weaponry is just as, if not more than, important than the armour. As mentioned earlier, large weapons are popular. Axes are a common aesthetic choice. If you are looking for a functional axe, there is the Norse Viking Axe. Meanwhile, the Two Handed Krieger LARP Axe is an ideal option for LARPing and cosplaying. When it comes to swords, the Warmonger Barbarian Sword and the Valhendyr LARP Viking Sword are two possible options. Besides axes and swords, barbarians can wield other polearms and weapons as well.
With clothing, armour, and weapons, a barbarian’s look is coming together. To finish off the look, you can add some accessories. These pieces can be functional in addition to adding a decorative touch. For example, wearing a belt like the Double Lined Medieval Ring Belt allows you to hang a bag from it. The Leather Barbarian Pouch and the Gideon Belt Bag are two possibilities. Meanwhile, wider belts like the Evandra Leather Belt can help create the look of a leather-covered torso in place of a cuirass. The Brown Laced Leather Wide Belt is a good middle ground between the two. Belts and bags are functional accessories.
If you wish, your barbarian character can wear jewelry as well. For example, the Horn Necklace with Leather String would fit in with a variety of barbarian looks. Leather based pieces are also versatile. The Leather Multi Braid Bracelet and the Braided Viking Bracelet Set would work well for a barbarian’s look. A more colorful option would be the Viking Cloth Beaded Necklace.
In this article, we looked at the background and popular aesthetics as well as options for dressing up a D&D barbarian. From weaponry to clothing, armour and more, there are a lot of pieces that go into this popular character class. What you choose should match your characters background. The pieces and items mentioned here are simply meant to give you a starting point to creating your barbarian’s look.