Our In-Depth Guide on How to Use Character AI Effectively

Helpful Summary

  • Overview: We explain how to use Character.ai effectively, highlighting its benefits, limitations, and practical applications like language learning and creative content creation.
  • Why trust us: We are experts in AI role-plays and story-writing, with extensive experience testing various platforms, including Character AI.
  • Why it matters: Character AI allows you to have engaging and personalized AI interactions completely free of charge. But to get the best experience, you need to know what the tool is all about and how to use it effectively.
  • Action points: Use pre-made characters or create custom ones to fit your needs, and explore different conversational scenarios. And use DreamGen to break free from Character AI’s limitations with more flexible, NSFW-friendly AI role-play and story writing.
  • Further research: Check out the DreamGen blog to discover more role-playing tools, tutorials, and detailed comparisons.

Want to Learn How to Use Character AI?

If you're into realistic chats or roleplays with AI-generated characters, Character AI is a platform you’ve probably at least heard of before. With over 20 million users and a huge library of AI characters to chat with, it’s one of the top options on the market.

But do you know how to use it effectively?

In this guide, we walk you through everything you need to know about Character AI—what it is, its strengths, its weaknesses, how to use it, and an alternative that gives you more creative freedom (spoiler alert: it’s DreamGen).

But first…

Why Listen to Us?

When it comes to AI role-plays and story-writing, we're all in.

We're passionate about helping people find the perfect platform to role-play and explore different conversations, no matter how "out there" or wild it might be (as long as they’re not hurting anyone). That's why we created DreamGen.

But before DreamGen came to life, we played with several other platforms to learn from their strengths and weaknesses. One of these was Character AI. The point? We've gathered all the intel you need to know about this tool.

What Is Character.AI?

Character AI (C.ai) is an AI chatbot platform where you can chat and role-play with various AI characters. These characters often respond in a way that feels somewhat human, thanks to Character AI’s proprietary advanced language model.

This platform also offers a huge library of ready-made characters, including fictional book characters, celebrities, dating coaches, language liaisons, and more.

CharacterAI demo 1

If none of those interest you, you can easily build your own custom bot from scratch.


  • Engaging and informative conversations: Character.AI allows you to have stimulating discussions on different topics. The AI characters can access and process vast amounts of information. As a result, they can provide insightful responses and engage in conversations that are lifelike and enjoyable.
  • Personalized interactions: Another massive plus with this platform is that you can build characters that match your specific interests and preferences. It’s as easy as plugging in a few parameters, defining the character, and you’re off to the races. This level of personalization ensures that your conversations on Character.AI are relevant and engaging.
  • Free to use: Character.AI is completely free to use. However, if you're in the free tier, you might experience some minor inconveniences, like waiting in a queue for popular bots or experiencing slower response times during peak hours. You can avoid these little hiccups by upgrading to c.ai+ for just $9.99 per month.


  • Content Restrictions: Character AI is designed for SFW, vanilla role-plays. If you step into the NSFW territory, expect to receive a warning. Ignoring the warning may lead to your account being banned. This limitation restricts how far your imagination can go when it comes to role-playing adventures.
CharacterAI demo 2
  • No direct API access: Although Character AI is open-source, the developers reserve its API for internal use. This means you can't download and run the technology on your local machine or integrate it directly into other applications.
  • Memory issues: One major drawback of Character AI is its tendency to forget information easily. While it might manage to keep up with a few conversations, as the dialogue builds over time, it tends to forget what you've previously told it.

How to Use Character AI Effectively

As mentioned earlier, Character AI allows you to chat with virtually any character you can imagine.

This makes it perfect for…

  • Exploring history
  • Brainstorming story ideas, character development, and dialogue
  • Playing games or creating choose-your-own-adventure stories
  • Practicing foreign languages or improving conversation skills
  • Practicing for presentations and job interviews

…and more.

However, to get the most out of Character AI, you need to know how to use it effectively. Let’s go through some tips and tricks for making the most out of this powerful tool.

Interact with User-Created Characters

Interacting with pre-made characters is how most people interact with Character AI.

It’s also the easiest way to interact with Character AI. Start by heading over to the Character AI website (character.ai) and creating an account (if you haven’t done so already).

Then, think about what exactly you want to do. Maybe you want to speak with a “therapist.” Maybe you want to practice your Korean. Maybe you want to do a romantic role-play with a significant other.

CharacterAI demo 3

Once you’ve decided, enter a few keywords into Character AI’s search bar. For example, if you want to learn a language, search for something like “language tutor.” Results are ranked based on how many chats they’ve recorded (which indicates how good a chatbot is).

Create Your Own Custom Characters

This is another popular way to use Character AI. And while creating an AI chatbot might seem complicated, it’s actually very easy—some would argue it’s too easy, but more on that later.

Here’s how you do it:

1. Access the Character Creation Page

CharacterAI demo 4
  • Head over to the Character AI website (character.ai)
  • Click the "Create” button on the navigation bar
  • Select "Character" from the dropdown menu

2. Shape your Character’s Identity

Once you click the "Create" button, you'll land on a page where you can define your character by filling in various parameters. The first three fields involve answering the question—who is your character (on a surface level)?

CharacterAI demo 5
  • Name: Choose a catchy and memorable name for your character. This will be how you identify them in chats and how others will find them on the platform.
  • Avatar: Select an image that visually represents your character. This could be anything from a photo to a creative drawing—the choice is yours!
  • Tagline: Come up with a short and descriptive phrase that captures your character's essence. For example, "A time-traveling historian" or "Your friendly neighborhood AI buddy."

3. Breathe Life Into the Character

Next, provide more context (description and greeting) about your character. This will ultimately shape how your character behaves and interacts during your chats.

CharacterAI demo 6
  • Description: Here's your chance to flesh out your character's details. Write a paragraph outlining their personality, background, interests, and anything else that makes them tick.
  • Greeting: Write a personalized greeting your character will deliver when you start a conversation. This could be a simple "Hello!" or something more elaborate.

4. Optional Touches

CharacterAI demo 7
  • Voice: Character.AI allows you to choose a voice for your character. You can pick from one of its pre-made voices or create one yourself.
  • Character Visibility: Choose whether your character will be publicly available for others to interact with or remain private for your personal use.

Once you've filled in all the details, hit the "Create Character" button. Congratulations, you've brought your very own AI companion to life.

Looking for a a More Refined AI Role-Play Platform?

DreamGen is an AI roleplay and story-writing platform that improves on C.ai's strengths while completely eliminating many of its biggest weaknesses.

DreamGen Scenarios

For starters, we don’t limit the conversations you can have with AI characters. You can role-play in any scenario or create any story you want without filters. We know great stories often need to explore dark or controversial themes—so our models are up for anything.

Another weakness we address? C.ai’s lack of story-writing chops. We solve this problem by giving you a dedicated story-writing mode that helps you write long-form stories, fanfics, and books with the help of AI.

On top of all this, we also offer:

  • Affordable pricing with a generous free plan
  • Open-source proprietary models
  • Granular control over AI models and outputs
  • Story Bible for organizing plot points, worldbuilding elements, and more


Character AI is a big name for AI chats, offering engaging, realistic, and personalized interactions completely free of charge.

However, it's not without its limitations. Content restrictions, lack of direct API access, memory issues, and the lack of optimization for storytelling might be deal-breakers for many. If you're looking for an alternative with no limitations, DreamGen is here to save the day.

Sign up today and start chatting with freedom.