Bring Team Rocket leader Giovanni to your D&D game


Team Rocket is currently enjoying a resurgence in the world of Pokemon.

The Pokemon Go counterparts of Team Rocket – Team Go Rocket – are causing havoc in the game and are set to invade Pokestops around the world at this time. On the anime side, Jessie and James are competing in a Pokemon conference tournament for the first time.

The Rockets are one of the most iconic groups in the Pokemon franchise, but while their appearance from the video game creation, Dungeons and Dragons players can bring them to their own game, whether it is the organization as a whole, or certain characters within their ranks.

One of Rocket members who would make a great addition to any D&D game is the team leader Giovanni.


When it comes to creating Giovanni as a D&D character, DMs might want to go with a human, both another race could be a tiefling to give him a devilish edge. Another option would be to make him a fallen aasimar to play off his past of being a Pokemon trainer and turning into a criminal.

As for classes, Giovanni would easily be a rogue and choose the Thief archetype because Team Rocket is a criminal organization. Another option is the Mastermind archetype, which would fill his role as a leader, along with the background of criminal/spy.

If DMs want to play the idea of Pokemon trainer straight, they would likely make him a Circle of the Shepherd Druid for controlling beasts. Yet, players and DMs could create a game mechanic where Pokemon function as familiars for characters.

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Another option would be to make Giovanni’s Pokemon team into NPC characters who can speak. Below are options for teams from Pokemon Yellow:

  • Rhydon, Nidoking and Nidoqueen – goliaths or Earth genasi
  • Dugtrio – a chimera or an ettin with an extra head
  • Persian – a tabaxi
  • Mewtwo – a tabaxi with amazing power or a tiefling who can channel great power

Making Giovanni’s Pokemon into NPCs will require more work, but it allows DMs creative freedom to give each Pokemon a different personality and make them formidable foes the players.

Team Rocket as a guild

Dungeon Masters can make the Rockets organization similar to thieves guilds in the game. They could have the leader Giovanni positioned at the top of the guild and build their hierarchy from there. There are other Team Rocket members who could fit in D&D like Archer and Ariana, or even Jessie, James and Meowth – a trio of bumbling thieves.

As for their motivation, DMs can make the Rockets a simple thieves guild who wants to steal and conduct criminal activities within their city of operation. This could lead to Giovanni wanting to usurp the city’s current power structure or feeding Mewtwo’s power.

Adventurers could encounter Rocket grunts throughout the city and disrupt their activities. After a certain point where players have thwarted the Rocket’s plans and gained a measure of infamy, Giovanni could make his presence known to the players by challenging them or offering them membership in the organization.

Players could take this opportunity to battle Giovanni or accept his offer.

There is the issue of the name. Since D&D is based in fantasy, a name like Team Rocket may not fit in because rockets are modern. Players and DMs can use their creativity to change the spelling – Team Rahquet – reflect the setting, or find a way to implement rockets into the game.

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DMs can draw inspiration from organizations like Waterdeep’s Xanathar’s Guild, or Ravnica’s House Dimir if they want to go down a darker route. The DM’s Guild also has resources and documents on how to run a thieves guilds and items to include in their headquarters.

These are just some ways to bring Giovanni into Dungeons and Dragons – DMs could make Giovanni and Team Rocket a group of dwarves who want to rule Mithral Hall. There are a plethora of options for DMs and players to utilize to make Giovanni and Team Rocket a great addition to their game.