Posts belonging to Category Characters in the world

Characterization Exercise: “Now That You’re Borrowing My Shoes….”

While it may not necessarily feel true for a lot of people, most people have some specific role they fill which, if it were to be filled by someone else, would require a certain amount of instruction. Fictional characters, be they from a story or game, almost all have roles like this; after all, designing [...]

Showing Politically Skilled Characters

Let’s face it, intrigue is fun: it creates cerebral rather than physical conflicts, gives the audience a chance to match wits with the characters, and leads to some of the best sneaky maneuvering and one-liners a fictional setting can allow. Then it gets tangled up with politics, and things get really interesting; a politically skilled [...]

Reprise: Awesome Vs. Better Than You: A Character Continuum

Originally posted on March 24, 2010.
I find there’s a continuum over which powerful characters (either compared to the PCs in a game, or compared to the world in which they’re in) tend to fall. On one end, you have the characters who are truly Awesome; one can envy them, but they’re much [...]

Character Born of Location

During my discussion of perfect locations last month, I mentioned the idea of locations that reached their ideal point because of one or more of the characters present. The converse also exists—sometimes there exist characters who are brought to their full potential (or at least, framed into a version not seen anywhere else) by their [...]

Learning from NaNo, Round 2: Raven Moments

I’ve always had a strong competitive streak: a constant drive to excel, to show the world how I measure up, particularly when I’m operating at what they consider to be a disadvantage or supposedly “can’t” do it. So something like NaNoWriMo, with its inherent scoring mechanic, is practically begging for me to turn my full [...]

GM Trick: Culture Acclimation and the Uncanny Valley

This week, I’ve focused mostly on ways that a player can learn enough about a GM’s created culture to be able to at least somewhat fit in (or at the very least, mostly stay out of trouble). But in the case of characters in cultures they aren’t actually a part of, there’s one fact about [...]

Culture Acclimation: Five Ways to Not Give Offense

It’s good to know what we need to know before we turn our characters loose on a new culture, and how to find it out, but sometimes knowledge just isn’t enough to keep our character’s feet safely out of their mouths. Instead, we need to figure out where the cultural traps are, and how to [...]

Things You Might Want To Know When Dropping Into a Culture

One of the side effects of dealing with worlds not our own is that we’re likely to be dealing with cultures not our own as well (and if we aren’t, why in blazes not?). From a player standpoint, or from the standpoint of a writer trying to deal with a culture not her own, this [...]

Semi-Generic Characters and How To Reuse Them

Every now and then, you just need a character(s) from a certain group. Such and such a cult. Such and such a location. Such and such an army. The personalities don’t matter as much, just as long as the characters have the appropriate background and will deal with the group in a certain way. Sure, [...]

Warrior Standards

One of the most important parts of creating a warrior culture is coming up with the standards to which its warriors are held. Without standards, after all, what is to set a warrior apart from a non-warrior in his culture, or a person who fights from that group of people over there? How is he [...]