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3-17-2008 @ 1:28PM
The common thread I'm seeing here is that even though you're pretending to be someone else via roleplaying, it's important to grasp that your character is a nobody, and will always be a nobody. I can buy that. Though I suppose it is hard to draw a line when doing the pretend-play. And while I don't RP, if I did, I could see myself going overboard with screwed-up. "Before I became undead, I was a dishwasher at the Inn in Brill, and lived in a rented flat in what would later be known as Deathknell. I had a live-in girlfriend who was about 40 pounds overweight, but she paid half of the rent so I couldn't kick her out. Being undead isn't all bad though. The whole not-eating, not sleepingthing has helped me kick my alcohol problem. If my children weren't completely-dead, I probably wouldn't beat them anymore since I'm sort of a mean drunk. So these days I do odd-jobs here and there for money. Kill some things, blow some crap up, the usual. The benefit of a war-time economy is that I have been able to do pretty well for myself....well, with the exception of being undead. I'm by no means rich, as alcohol has been replaced by other things. Thistle Tea isgreat drink for a quick boost of energy. When I first started drinking it, it was incredible. But after doing it for a while it's only 40% as effective as it used to be. I've started smoking the swiftthistle instead, and it helps with the pain. I was once out harvesting it, and there a member of the Alliance also trying to pick it. Things went wrong, and I killed. I guess getting my fix is more valuable than the life of another person. My guild says I should go to rehab, but they're idiots. Of course what I'd like to know above all else is whether my teeth falling out is a side-effect of all drugs, or simply the undead-plague running its course."Yeah, I could totally get into this. The physically abusive stoner rogue.
3-17-2008 @ 7:00PM
Well, I don't think that many of us are advocating being nobodies. A character without depth, without emotion, without drive is probably not going to be an appealing character to roleplay for long. A flat character - what I imagined when I see the word "nobody" - is unmemorable and probably unenjoyable.On the other hand, being the bastard son of Thrall and Jaina, thrice blessed under the moon by the goddess Elune Herself, heir apparent to fortune, fame, and glory is the other extreme - and the extreme that most of us want to avoid more than even the flat character.The goal, then, is to find some sort of balance between these two aspects. It's easier by far to avoid a character that is the center of the universe or one who has to be at the center of the stage at all times. These by far are the most berated, bemoaned, and belittled of our brethren. No one likes the character who usurps the story from his grubby paws. No one likes the character who has to be the most important at all time. No one likes the character who lacks depth, history, foresight, or even any measure of leniency; these are the characters for whom the game exists for their purpose and everyone they come across are just background in as they play their magnificent role.However, the boring, bland, and flat character I would consider is the more insidious of the two. It's more difficult to recognize this type of character. Furthermore, these are the people who are the most difficult to get involved; due to the lack of drive, the lack of interest, and lack of depth, these characters are not ever driving forces in the universe. This is, of course, different from characters who have little to no control over their own path because they very well may have some reaction to what the future has in store for them. They're hard to bring into the fold because there is nothing that could drive them into doing something. They are, for all intents and purposes, "nobodies".Your character, with his faults, low bearing, bad habits, and lack of couth, is a SOMEBODY. He has depth. He has something that drives him. He possesses a personality. He is someone that I might not want to spend a lot of time with if this were real, but this character is someone that I would WANT to include while weaving stories because he presents something different and intriguing. Despite fear of sounding silly, he possesses a soul that a "nobody" would otherwise lack!
3-17-2008 @ 11:12PM
I think this guy just summed up why I argue for a bit of flexibility regarding #4. You're a freaking hero. Don't be afraid to play that up. When you're Exalted with [faction], that means something. Play it. Don't put yourselves down.
3-18-2008 @ 7:45AM
A hero, yes, but you don't (shouldn't?) start out that way. You're a mindless peon or neophyte when you begin the game; your character is a relative unknown outside of a small circle of people, whether it's fellow roleplayers or even the fictional background you've created for your character. That kind of thing comes with time and effort, and is indicative of that character's growth. Another thing to note is that a hero isn't the center of the universe. A hero may be recognized, may have numerous amazing feats under his belt, and may be a driving force within his sphere of influence, but he's probably still the sum of all of his parts: who he's met, what he's done, and what they've done together. Roleplaying should be inclusive; being perpetually alone in the center of the stage is by definition not being inclusive (or only moderately so).I don't think rule four advocates being a nobody or not being a driving force or hero. It instead reminds me of how roleplaying is actually the sum of all of the parts and that roleplaying should focus instead on interaction and not being perceived as being the ultimate anything. As David noted in another article, "Your character is a savior of the world and a regular nobody -- both at the same time."I'm giddy with the amount of roleplaying articles and discussion that has occured recently. Squee.
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