August 17 2016

BDO-RP: Characters, Backstory, and the Character Creator

NewG

My witch has gone through a physical overhaul. Mostly to suit my own madness but also to set her up with a physical presence that can sync with a plausible back story.

RP can be a pain in the ass because you’re not only pretending to be someone else, but at the same time you’re reacting to things the way that character would react to things. There also isn’t really anyone telling you if you’re getting it right. Though sometimes fellow RP’rs will give you a hand with this if you ask them.

Something that can make it a lot easier to figure out how your character would respond to something is basically understanding their who they are, where their from, and what drives them.

One way to do this is to just RP and get a feel for how you want them to play out. That works and over time you can build up an idea of how your character responds to the world around them. This method is great when starting up in a game that’s just launched when nobody is really sure about the lore and everyone is in the same boat you are.

Once a game has been around for a bit, it can be harder to just RP your way into a character and role. Most people are settled into their characters and guilds. They also usually have a good idea of the lore and how things work in game. This is where either looking into wikis and forums or just picking people’s brains really comes in handy.

Otherwise you could end up with the cat-girl, vampire, Pokemon catching, mercenary that everyone is loath to RP with because they sit so far outside the game lore that it’s not even funny anymore. While granted RP is completely fiction and people are free to RP however they want, when you’re working with a group of people it can sometimes help to try to mold your character to the lore so that everyone is working from the same rule book.

It’d be like wanting to play monopoly but using the rules from chutes and ladders. It can make for some very unique and creative game play, but you’re probably not going to get very far. Especially if everyone else at the table is still playing Monopoly and staring at you like you’ve got a third eye.

This is where the backstory can come in handy. If you can tie it in with the lore, then you can explain where your character has been up until the point you started to RP with them. These experiences in their lives can be catalysts for how they react in certain situations and just give you a general feeling for how they’d behave the rest of the time.

There’s a few schools of thought on backstories. Some people refuse to make them and other people really enjoy making sure that they tell you every detail of this hand crafted back story they’ve come up with. On a slow RP day that’s not too bad, but it’s not always the wisest move to be the guy or gal at the moody table brooding over your character’s past instead of engaging the RP around them.

The thing about backstories is that you want to create something plausible without being totally over the top. It also helps if you don’t focus on one aspect of that character’s existence, but weave in some good and bad things that have happened to them so that they’re more of a real person than say a one dimensional character that is only motivated by one or two emotions like say revenge, anger or even lust.

I try to make balanced semi plausible back stories though I’m sure I still have a long way to go in perfecting the craft. At this point I’m trying to pull something together for my Witch. Thing is though I’m just not sure where to start her out and whether she’ll be worked in with my other characters or not.

So the main questions I’m asking are:

Where did she come from? This can also count for class if you’re placing them in a class based society or a faction if that’s more the flavor of the game. Race can also play a hand in this if your character is a unique flavor of race.

What is her family situation like? Is she all alone in the world or does she have a loving family back home?

What does her resume look like? What is her education and background?

Who does she already know? Does she know your existing characters, your friend’s characters, does she need to be introduced to your guild?

What does she currently want out of life? While a little deep, this one though can help figure out what path this character is going to take and who she’ll want to associate with.

Now with these questions to work at I’ll have to figure something out. Like what town she’s from, who she knows and what her life has been like.

If you really want to get detailed having a timeline set by the game timeline can help you keep your fictional facts strait. You don’t have to invest that kind of time unless you’re like me and details start to pick at you.

As for the character creator, the BDO character creator gives you a lot of options. If you’re not sure what you want to do you can always create the character first giving them specific features like age and skin tone, then start to build their background based partially on how they look.

With my witch here she has a large facial scar and a damaged eye. Now I get to figure out where that came from and how that impacts her life. Pretty sure that having trouble seeing from one eye is going to have an impact on how a person perceives the world around them.

You can add scars, go with bold hair styles or just make one buff war veteran. It’s totally up to you. Having the game lore as a framework helps a lot, it can stave off the blank page syndrome that can make it really daunting just to get started.

Anyway, it looks like I have some thinking to do with my fishing today. Until next time, have fun!



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Posted August 17, 2016 by Geistig in category "Black Desert Online", "RP

About the Author

GEISTIG / Izzy & Klein MMO gamer, site owner, blogger since 2008. "I wear a lot of masks."