Character Generation - Part 1

Step 1: Concept

These are the basic elements of who your character is, and what he or she looks like. You can find instructions on inputting this information in the game.

An optional tool that can help you develop a character's personality is a character diamond.

A few things to consider as you fill in these details:

Name

Your character's name is an important element. It's the very first thing that tells other players something about your character. Consider a name carefully. Try to pick something that conveys a certain feel.

Playing an Antagonist

What is an antagonist? It doesn't always mean a villain. It can a prankster, a troublemaker, a manipulator, or perhaps a criminal. An antagonist is someone who generates conflict. Here are some things to think about when designing an antagonist.

Antagonists can be risky, even on an OOC level. Like any character, you want an antagonist to be enjoyable by others. But it's very easy to become an irritant instead of an inspiration.

Any character ought to have a narrative that other characters can get invested in. This is especially true for antagonists. What motivates this character to generate conflict? Why should anyone care enough about that motivation to look past the flaws and see what is really driving the character?

Being a source of problems does not make for a complete character. In fact, it can make for a pretty shallow one that will end up being a drain on everyone around them. An antagonist needs redeeming qualities, preferably obvious ones. The prankster who always sticks up for the little guy. The thief with a soft spot for the poor and needy. The angry youth who is unfailingly loyal. These are examples of strong choices that give a readily apparent positive quality to characters that would merely be annoyances or two-dimensional villains otherwise.

Furthermore, if you're going to play an antagonist, make sure you've got the time to invest in not only your schemes, but also to face the music for them. There is little more aggravating than someone who will stir things up, then vanish the moment their character might suffer consequences.

We like antagonists. They can be a source of great conflict, which is the essence of all good stories. But be sure to breathe depth into them so that they are more than the problems they create.

Actor

Having an Actor, or PB ("Played By"), is a great way to portray and gain inspiration for your character's appearance and personality. It also helps others to envision your character. Some people pick an Actor to suit the character they've already imagined. Others start with an Actor and let the casting inspire and inform their character choices. See which method works best for you.

Some things to consider when selecting an actor:

  • Check the List — Be sure to check the +actors list to see who has already been taken. Only one person may use a given actor (unless both players have agreed to play twins). If you want to check for a specific actor, try +actor <name>. For example, +actor Brad Pitt will tell you if anyone is using Brad Pitt, and whom. It works for partial names, too, so +actor Brad will tell you about any actors named Brad.
  • Age-Appropriate — Try to choose an actor for whom you can find age-appropriate pictures of reasonable quality. This goes doubly for child characters. It's rather jarring to many players when you are playing a 12-year-old, but all of your images are clearly a 15- or 16-year-old. We realize that finding a good child actor can be difficult, but we are more than happy to help and make suggestions.
  • HP Film Actors — We do draw heavily on the look of the Harry Potter films, including the actors. Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and Eddie Redmayne are all off-limits. Others might be permitted if they were not prominently portrayed in the films, or look significantly different from their film appearance.
  • NPC Actors— Many player also like to choose actors for NPCs that are relevant to their characters, such as family members that mostly exist off-screen. This is fine, just be aware that unless that NPC actually exists in game (such as a character you make and put on the roster), any new PC that chooses that actor will get priority.

Still having trouble? Check out our list of pre-screened Actor Suggestions!

Origin

Origin is a characters ancestry or species. For most characters, this is going to be "wizard", "wizard-born", or "blig". There are other, more exotic Origins available with the expenditure of Brownies.

Role

Roles are a kind of general category for the part a character plays on the stage of Witchcraft and Wizardry. See Roles, or +roles in game, for a complete list of the available Roles.

Title

This is a freeform entry that is used to describe your characters vocation or occupation. It is most often literally a job title. This will be related to your character's Role, but more specific and personal. For instance, your Role might be "Laborer", but your Title could be the more specific "Janitor".

Organization

Many characters will belong to some organization or another. There are many local affiliations that a character might be associated with, including:

  • Eos
  • Sheriff's Office
  • Valley Hospital
  • Iron Brigade
  • SOTA
  • Rocklin High School
  • Walker Middle School

If your character is a student, set your Organization to "Rocklin High School" or "Walker Middle School".

Graduating Year

This entry is very important, even for non-students. Your starting points and skill limits are based on your current school year (or adult status), so it is vital that you use the +graduate command before starting on Abilities.

To determine your graduating year, take the year your character was born and add 18. It's not wholly in line with reality, but in this case realism took a backseat to simplicity.

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