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The best Ghibli-inspired D&D 5E adventures and settings for fans of Spirited Away, Totoro and more

Get into some Miyazaki-style Dungeons & Dragons shenanigans.

Image credit: Meg McCurdy

It takes a special something to capture the whimsical, cosy essence of a Studio Ghibli movie, but there are plenty of Ghibli-inspired D&D 5E supplements out there doing just that - and doing so with the grace of a most helpful forest spirit. If upcoming Ghibli-flavoured RPG Break!! is something you and your D&D party are keeping an eye out for, then this is the list for you. I've gathered together some of the best Ghibli-inspired 5E supplements, from all-new settings, minigames, items, crafting systems and bestiaries, all of which are fully compatible with Dungeons & Dragons’ Fifth Edition. That way, you can dip your toes into the enchanted worlds of the great filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki through a system you already know and love.

Best Ghibli-inspired D&D 5E supplements

What makes a D&D 5E supplement, adventure or roll table so obviously Ghibli-inspired, you ask? Other than its description specifically listing movies such as Spirited Away, My Neighbour Totoro or Princess Mononoke as a reference, there are a few running themes and technologies that bear the Ghibli seal of approval. Aside from the wholesome, anime aesthetic and sumptuous food porn every Ghibli movie has had the gall to tease me with, there's Mikazaki's not-so-subtle obsession with airships - both modern and mythical - and strange, folkloric creatures that guide and abate the protagonists. A lot to work with in a D&D setting, then.

If you love the comforting vibe of Ghibli movies, check out these cozy RPGsWatch on YouTube

Miyazaki's work often touches on darker themes, too. These are stories of mankind's folly as they wreak havoc through war and greed, blackening the world with their reckless hate, and the fury of nature's vengeance. But Ghibli heroes are hardy and brave; they're doers, makers, and by golly they'll face the perils ahead of them to make a better world. These are all things that make any story unmistakably Ghibli-esque, and the D&D supplements below have it in buckets.

Some of these Ghibli-inspired D&D 5E supplements have yet to complete their Kickstarter campaigns, but they're already fully funded and have shown a lot of promise, so be sure to keep an eye on those.

1. The Wandering Tavern

The mystery of Laputa meets Howl's Moving Castle-style engineering, with a sprinkling of Spirited Away's irksome ghosties

Father-and-son creators HOMIE and The DUDE create a world of flying bars and spiritual companions in this Ghilbi-inspired D&D setting. | Image credit: HOMIE and The DUDE

Funded in just four hours on Kickstarter, D&D 5E campaign The Wandering Tavern takes place in a ginormous floating tavern, a Zephyr of epic proportions, filled with gritty characters and secrets waiting to be unfurled. Throughout the game book, the setting is presented to us through the scattered notes of Journalist of the Travelling Scribes, Amilia. Her narrations enrich the book and give it more of that intimate edge that Studio Ghibli prides itself on.

Aboard the fabled Zephyr, which seems only to reveal itself when you're not actively searching for it, is a pastiche of bars, jumbled, cramped quarters and game halls in which players have the opportunity to get involved in several minigames also detailed in the book.

Players might run into characters - such as a perky Rabbit Kin with a stewing wanderlust, or Spirits in search of friendship - and there are plenty of love stories and quiet rivalries for your party to get sidetracked with. The guide comes with lore and plot hooks for each character, with narratives revolving around a spirit invasion, tales of rebellion and plots to rid the Wandering Tavern of a group known as the Claw Mafia.

There are huge battle maps to skirmish on, celebrations to be had and new mechanics for the Spirits you might encounter. There are also 18 new magical items to be collected, from winged backpacks; illicit, mind altering substances; and masks to help you converse with spirits to wards that render you invisible to them (which is much easier than holding your breath).

Moreover there's a vehicle builder to help you create custom Zephyrs with 5E stat blocks in just a few clicks, and even a bunch of real-life recipes, so you can buff your actual players with fried pickles - a delicacy the narrator managed to wangle from the Wandering Tavern's best chefs.

The Wandering Tavern's Kickstarter campaign runs until May 10th, with a release expected in June.

2. Obojima: Tales from the Tall Grass

Handle familiars with the grace of Princess Nausicaä against a backdrop of Mononoke-style monsters and Ponyo-esque underwater hijinks

Obojima: Tales from the Tall Grass crams dozens of Ghibli-esque character options, items and inspiration into a gorgeous compendium for Fifth Edition. | Image credit: 1985 Games

1985 Games' Obojima: Tales from the Tall Grass is a comprehensive compendium with over 250 pages. Inside you'll find pages of detailed lore, and hundreds of goodies including new spells, magic items, new mechanics and a boon system, as well as all the tools you need to to create your own fantastical narratives.

There are pre-generated characters to pick from, along with three new races, new feats and backgrounds to play with, and eight subclasses such as the College of Masks Bard, Origami Mage or Corrupted Ranger. You can even get yourself a sweet little familiar thanks to the addition of new mechanics and eight new little friends to accompany you on your travels.

Players could find themselves doing dealings with a merchant cat who sleeps atop a wizard's vending machine or brewing potions with the 130-odd ingredients scattered around the many mystical settings of Obojima. There's even a potion and ingredient deck box complete with little illustrations so you can have fun combining things to aid your party.

Obojima's Kickstarter campaign is now over, but you can still make a late pledge to grab the PDF, hard cover, dice sets, miniatures and deck set ahead of its planned release this September.

3. Witch+Craft

Start your own witchy business like Kiki, weave prophetic tapestries such as those which told Nausicaä's fate or make friends with My Neighbour Totoro-style familiars

Witch+Craft focuses on the magical makey-doey pastimes of your D&D characters, with rules for crafting items and trading them. | Image credit: Astrolago Press

You may have guessed from the title, Witch+Craft is a D&D 5E supplement with a huge focus on crafting. Magical crafting, that is. And we're not just talking about basic potions here.

Inside the book are blueprints for everything from the mundane to wandmaking, and even rare and gilded magic items. You could design a practically indestructible, prophecy-generating tapestry or an illuminating manuscript that lets you turn your whims into cold, hard facts that, all of a sudden, everyone in the realms will understand as common knowledge.

Of course, to create these fantastical objects, you have to go through the crafting process detailed in the book. As opposed to a simple dice check, there are several steps to crafting that make it feel like its own little minigame, from proposing a project to gathering materials and preparing. Even fine-tuning and appraisal come into it.

When you're done making, you can get into trading. Known as a "Class", it's actually more of a side-hustle or profession, and doesn't take over as your actual D&D character class. Still, it means you can profit from your creations, with plenty of mediums to choose from as you move through the tiers, including metals, wood, crystals and "living arts".

That's just scratching the surface. The Witch+Craft book also comes with a dozen new spells. There are some for each class, including a sixth-level Transmutation spell that lets you awaken objects just for a chat, or to travel and fight with them. On top of that, there are ten new familiars, such as an interdimensional Utilitortoise that doubles as a craft storage box, and a little, talking fox-like Fey creature called the Witch's Daemon.

There's also an adventure included, so you can try out all of the above in a wholesome, witchy context.

You can nab the Witch+Craft PDF or hardcover book from publisher Astrolago Press' shop.

4. Eyes Unclouded

Get into some Kiki's Delivery Service-inspired adventures or cavort with Feywild cat kings looking like they've come straight out of The Cat Returns

Named after a quote from Studio Ghibli founder Hayao Miyazaki himself, Eyes Unclouded gathers together a series of D&D 5E adventures inspired by films from Howl's Moving Castle to Princess Mononoke. | Image credit: Auri Cavendish

Eyes Unclouded is an anthology of D&D 5E adventures, each one infused with Studio Ghibli influence. From cat kings to lush traditional cuisine, this one has it all.

The Ghibli influence is clear not just in the book's aesthetic, but in that its name is taken straight from a Miyazaki quote: "You must see with eyes unclouded by hate. See the good in that which is evil, and the evil in that which is good. Pledge yourself to neither side, but vow instead to preserve the balance that exists between the two."

Living out this rather Zen fantasy, you'll have the choice between eleven different adventure modules, made for characters between levels 1 and 14. These are exceptionally written narratives which you can grab individually, and many come with multiple endings and great puzzle components.

A Day with the Fey is one such campaign which sees players muddled in a case of mistaken identity, being blamed for someone else's wrongdoings at a dryad's funeral, dealing with a hag coven and serving up yummy meals.

Alongside the adventures, there are plenty of goodies to collect, such as the Broom of Lesser Flying and Sugar Cubes that produce the effects of the Reduce/Enlarge spell.

You can grab Eyes Unclouded from the Dungeon Masters Guild.

5. Book of Spirits

Summon some emotionally-charged roleplay that's enough to give you the Grave of the Fireflies feels

Book of Spirits delves into the darker side of Ghibli seen in movies such as Grave of the Fireflies, introducing a new Resonance system that influences combat through your character's emotions. | Image credit: Beyond the Screen

Not to be confused with The Book of Spirits - a D&D 5E one-shot adventure - this Book of Spirits is a fully fledged compendium or "Ethereal Supplement" for the fantasy RPG. Inside, a new realm "Beyond the Veil" will be revealed to you.

While this Ghibli-inspired supplement is a little more sword-and-sorcery than some on this list, it's the Resonance System that gives it that Ghibli edge for me. It's a roleplay-focused mechanic that has your character's emotions affecting the spirit monsters you're in combat with.

Come up against a fear spirit, and you'll have the option to roleplay as ‘unperturbed’ with a skill check. A success will stifle the spirit, making it less dangerous. Get it wrong or act scared, and you could end up kindling the spirit, unlocking new features for it to mess you up with. You also might nab a Resonance die (a d6) that can be added to any of your subsequent rolls, too.

It's a cathartic mod that gives players more reason to roleplay, getting into the why behind their character's reactions, and feels like something Miyazaki would encourage.

On top of the Resonance system, there's several maps, adventures and subclasses, as well as a new Conduit class whose attuned spirits can buff the party or attack foes. There are over 50 spirits to play with in the extensive bestiary, each one designed around an aspect of the psyche. There are more than 30 spirit powers to be unlocked, too.

The Spirit Book may not be all magic ramen and cozy vibes, but you can bet it'll get the party's emotions flowing.

Book of Spirits' Kickstarter campaign runs until May 9th, with the book's PDF due to arrive in April next year.

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