TBW's guide to developing a character

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The Burning Waffle

Senior Member

02-10-2011

I'd like to begin by saying that I've contributed to this forum on and off, a few of the vets will know me, and this guide is meant to be useable by all, Veteran RPer and newbie alike.

So let's begin, taking this in a step by step process

Come up with a concept: Fortunately league is very, very generous with it's lore, so almost any concept is viable. The first step in making your RP avatar is coming up with a basic concept. I've known people to immediately know they wanted to be a Minotaur who swings Dual Scythes, and I've known people who had to be coaxed out from an idea so simple as "I want to be something cool and strong." As with any process you need an abstract. For the sake of example we'll use the minotaur previously mentioned throughout this guide.

Be Creative: Yes, you can be a plumber that happens to shoot fireballs for some reason, but that's been reused to often you couldn't make it fresh with ought scrubbing everyone's mind of it. Don't just copy someone because they're doing well or because they're cool *cough*Sephiroth*cough cough*. You want to be known for a character you've made, not just as someone who can RP a knock-off. (Courtesy of K.D. Bonez)

What can your character do?: This is important, and usually saved til later but it's a strong second step to take. Is he a wizened grandmaster or a peasant who's picked up a pitchfork to defend his home? Can she fly or talk to plants? Wings? Fangs? Claws? Legendary blades? Go wild, have fun with it. Just be reasonable, nobody wants to RP with the character who is literally a god and has every power in the book. If your worried about overdoing it pick up an old sourcebook for dungeons and dragons, and allot your character's skills with a set amount of talent points. Using our example, he'll be a Minotaur granting him immense strength, and he'll have his ancestral weapons: a pair of scythes. Short, simple, and to the point.

Give them a personality: Most veterans can ignore this section, but for people new to RPing this is important, pick a personality and stick with it. With the exception of some very, very rare cases your character shouldn't stray from how he acts. The Executioner won't be a family man on the side. A 10 year old princess who's been raised to be proper all her life usually won't be into BDSM. For beginners pick something that reflects your personality, if your a quiet geek maybe play a mage who's never had much experience outside of the arcane library. For our example, He'll have been raised with his tribe of Nomadic Minotaur, so he'll be able to warm up to people but not immediately, and he'll always be wary of foreigners and outsiders.

Give us a backstory: Every hero has a history to some degree. Your legends, people like K.D. Bonez will have alot of story to tell, and you'll have to be prepared to tell it all over time, whether that's a drawn out monologue, or subtle reveals. Or in a shurelia http://summoners.shurelia.com/ . The more important part to this is it may be a part of how you RP. If your champion had a lost lover for example and he sees someone who reminds him of her he'll follow her to the ends of the earth. The opposite is also true, you may have ghosts of the past haunting you. Now for new characters, your writing your story as you go, your backstory can be simple "Student under an archmage" "Peasant drafted in an army" "City Slicker with nothing better to do" and much, much more. These will affect how you act, but your story is a blank book and your holding the pen. For our example we'll say he's young, raised by his tribe's chieftan, so he'll be very competitive trying to become the best he can to become a great chief someday, setting out in the world for this purpose.

The Nitpicky: Now for the last few details, Your name which hopefully you've decided on is important, don't be ridiculous please. Your alignment, should match your personality that you've decided on, if your cruel then chaotic is for you. If justice is your thing then lawful. Good and Evil speak for themselves, as does Neutral. For our example, we'll need a strong name for a Minotaur, Grennan, and a naturalistic last name so, Grennan Earthwalker, and being young and headstrong he'll be a bit Chaotic, but good natured so Chaotic good.


Last But Not Least: Don't dive straight into an expert RP, for one thing if it's 40 pages long and well established, you won't fit in so well into the story. Look for something starting, 1-10 pages preferred, as few as possible. For the newbies out there, don't get into any complicated stories, If it's a story catered for known RPers, don't necessarily avoid it, but something easier like the Hero Academy will be a bit more suited to you.


Ty for reading, post feedback and let me know how i did.

Additional Reading:
http://thepunchlineismachismo.com/archives/589 (Don't be a Mary Sue, and don't be uninformed!)


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Methelod

Senior Member

02-10-2011

Perfect, even though I have a tendency to ignore all of those.


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The Burning Waffle

Senior Member

02-10-2011

it's more meant for people who don't have experience making characters, i've been playing D&D for years so it's not a big deal for me lol


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Dracorya

Senior Member

02-10-2011

Oh man, this brings me back to my DnD days.

My DM was completely evil, he designed everything with the intent of killing us unless we had to see the tiny glimmer of a lifeline he had thrown in there...somewhere.

Oh you know what, I should link this thing so people can avoid making "Mary Sues." Sadly, the term is thrown around a lot by people who actually don't know what a true Mary Sue is.

http://thepunchlineismachismo.com/archives/589

I loved this person explanation on what she felt does or does not qualify as a Mary Sue. Everyone should read it.


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Cidem1324

Web Content Assistant

02-10-2011

I great read. I myself have a tendency to focus too much on the backstory rather than the personality.


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The Burning Waffle

Senior Member

02-10-2011

Ty for the link Draco, and i've been there lol, as the DM and player alike

and Personality is important too Cidem, your not RPing your backstory after all


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Dracorya

Senior Member

02-10-2011

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Burning Waffle View Post
Ty for the link Draco, and i've been there lol, as the DM and player alike

and Personality is important too Cidem, your not RPing your backstory after all
You're very welcome.


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K D Bonez

Senior Member

02-10-2011

Good read with some good points to help people with character development. If I could add one thing it would be this:

Encourage creativity. Yes, you can be a plumber that happens to shoot fireballs for some reason, but that's been reused to often you couldn't make it fresh with ought scrubbing everyone's mind of it. Don't just copy someone because they're doing well or because they're cool *cough*Sephiroth*cough cough*. You want to be known for a character you've made, not just as someone who can RP a knock-off.

Example: I want to make a Death Knight. So what do I immediately think of when I think "Death Knight"? Ones from World of Warcraft (you know, the Hero Class). From that point on, I want to think of what makes a DK in WoW what it is, and try to distance myself from that a bit. It's okay to take some things (like diseases and plagues), but I want to give it my own fresh feel to it. So what I would probably do is name him "[Name], the Bastion of Dread/Death" (just thought of off the top of my head) because I want him to be that guy that when you see him, you shat yourself.

Now, for powers, he's going to be something like "Undead, but has unholy death powers". That could mean a lot of things; he could release a killer miasma from his body. he could raise the dead, he could infect living beings with plagues, etc. I center his powers on my idea for him.

After that, I'd want to think of a name and title. I kinda skipped around the step because I had a moment of genius and went with a title already. "Bastion of Dread/Death" (pending) is reflective of his abilities and his role. A "Bastion" is a fortification (so he's going to be like a tank), and Dread/Death represent his unholy powers. As for his actual name, it's really up to however you want. For me, I look at various names of characters from different locations in the Lore Universe and try to match the style. An example of this would be my WoW Troll Hunter Rorjen (Ror'Jen). Trolls usually have separated names, and the racial leaders ends with "Jin" (Vol'jin). So, I change it how I like it, say it to myself, and if I like it, I use it.

So with that in mind, I'm going to say that the Death Knight is a former Demacian Soldier. So I'm going to use "Faris" as the first name; it's uncommon but it's not to outlandish. For the last name, we have "Crownguard" as an example of a Demacian last name. That's kind of special because of how well it rolls off the tongue; it's rare to have that good of a combination. I mean, we have "Fortune, Swain, Hastur" as other last names. So you can either go with something that "fits" well with the first name, or fits the roll. I'm going with the latter and using "Plagueblade".

His name is Faris Plagueblade, the Bastion of Dread.

For Personality, it really depends on how you want to RP your character. For Faris, since he's a "Death Knight" that used to be a Demacian, he would want to return. However, the chances of Demacia taking in an undead are as likely as Noxus accepting Yordles with open arms, chocolate and hugs (BLECK! (<3 Tristana though)). So now he's Forsaken (see what I did there my fellow WoW'ers?) and is doomed to roam the lands, nowhere left to live. Over time, he will grow mad, insane, cryptic, and thinking the only way he can right this wrong is to make everyone undead like he is, then he'd be accepted. So now he's a wandering force of power, in a vain attempt to kill whatever he can find to sate his desire of a world of undeath. With all that swimming in your head, what would his alignment be? Obviously Chaotic Evil, since he's out to pretty much kill everyone and convert them into undead.


So there we have it, a viable RP Character in 20min!


"Faris Plagueblade, the Bastion of Dread- A former Demacian raised into Undeath (for some reason) as a Death Knight who eventually grew insane and is now bringing undeath to Valoran!" As for the background, you create it yourself, this is just a rough example.


One thing to note; this is MY thought process, it won't be the same for everyone, but a glimpse of how it works can go miles.


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Lu Caos

This user has referred a friend to League of Legends, click for more information

Senior Member

02-10-2011

On the topic of Character power, most people focus on just the combat oriented power but there are actually two types of power. Combat and Rp power. Rp power being your character's connections, who does he/she know, what kind of favors can they call in. In many cases RP power can be a lot stronger than combat power, though a lot more subtle. For example, My character Lu has very high combat abilities, but he has very few connections. If something needs getting done generally he has to do it himself or strike a deal with another party for assistance. But someone like Kalis for example has tons of connections, but probably wouldn't fare as well in many combat senario's as Lu would.

Secondly your characters scope of power is important. Do they have a focus? Or are they more a generalist. Your character might be able to do everything, but they will never be anywhere near as good in a field as a specialist. Lu is a specialist, he has difficulty casting any sort of magic other than Transmutation, he can cast enchantments well but it takes him a lot of time and is impossible to do during combat.

Remember to keep in mind your character's strengths and weakness's when making him/her. He can't be all mighty and know everyone :P


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Areia Polias

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Senior Member

02-11-2011

A very good guide. You should ask to have this added to the Archives if you have not yet already done so.


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