Hi, my name is Finn and I really like roleplaying games, that wonderful hobby where you sit around a dining table (or couches/game store table/bedroom floor) for several hours pretending to be elves (or superheroes/vampires/bunnies), fighting imaginary dragons (or supervillains/zombies/bears with laser eye vision), rolling dice and generally nerding up the vicinity. Good times. But I don't just like playing games or running them as a GM, something I’ve been doing for a bit over a decade now. I like collecting them. As I write this, I'm awaiting the arrival of seven different RPGs. I have spent over $500 on the hobby this year, on more than I could ever realistically run or play in, let alone the many I already possess.
But I've realized I'm okay with that. I get intellectual enjoyment from RPGs as well as enjoyment from the experience of play. I like thinking about campaigns I'll never run, characters I'll never play. But I really want to write about RPGs more, to share my thoughts about games and expose people to some of the more bizarre and wonderful ones out there. At the very least I want an excuse to pore over my collection and engage with it a little more than just reading and re-reading.
So that's why I decided to create this blog. This is a create a character blog, in which I go through each of the games I possess, use the guidelines to create a character as if I were preparing one for an actual game and then post the results online. It certainly is not unique, other such blogs exist, some written by folks who have written things for the industry! I would strongly advise you check out 'A Character for Every Game', my favourite such example, if only for the author's hilarious attempts to create a dead Earth character (Yes, ‘attempt’ is the appropriate word here. It takes him two times to make one that lives to the end of creation. The capitalisation is also intentional).
I had a go at doing one of these before. It wasn't much of a success, for two main reasons. Firstly, I set to cover games in a specific order. Unfortunately, that meant when I got to games I wasn't really motivated to cover, the whole thing ground to a halt and became a sort of mandatory fun, a thing I had to do to get to the good stuff. Not exactly ideal for what was supposed to be a purely fun little web project. Secondly, the manner in which I covered the games was not exactly thorough, or useful. Have you ever had one of those drawing books like this? My blog was a tad like that, vaguely covering the initial steps of the character creation process, skipping a whole bunch and presenting the finished article. If you didn't already know what was going on, it would have been pretty impenetrable. So, that was a bit lame. On a minor note, I wrote in what I kind of think was a faux excitable, forced style with way too many exclamation marks. Here’s hoping this attempt has less of that.
I'm going to do a couple of things differently to make sure I don't have the same problems. Firstly, I'm going to just do any game I damn well feel like. Since I'm not educating the masses or covering topical issues, there's no reason to have them in any specific order or adhere to strict updating rules and it means I won't encounter that 'mandatory fun' problem again. The second change is I'm going to be more thorough. I'm going to go over each step in detail, so hopefully readers who aren't familiar with the game in question can still follow the process and have some understanding of what the finished character can do.
How do I intend to go about this? Let's look at the format:
Here I go over what the game is actually about and what kind of characters you would play as.
One part general description, one part review, this section will be a more general look at the game, the basics of the system, what experiences I've had, if any, and perhaps a minor critique.
What this blog is about! I make the character, step-by-step as faithful as possible to the process as laid out in the game. At the end, I'll post the finished result at the end.
How I'd Run It
A diversion from the blog's stated purpose, this bit is where I outline an idea or two for how I'd run that game as a GM. Some will be fairly straight adaptations of the game as intended, others massively divergent, like my idea where I run a kaiju game using the Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition rules (better than it sounds, trust me).
I doubt the readership of this is going to be anything more than one or two people, but that’s OK by me. On the off chance that someone other than my wonderful girlfriend deigns to take a look, firstly, I hope you find what I write both enjoyable and informative and secondly, if you have any suggestions, particularly games you’d like me to cover, please don’t hesitate to comment!
First character coming soon. I’m starting with the game that I consider my awakening to the wide world of RPGs outside the ‘big two’ (that would be D&D and the World of Darkness games) – WW2 superhero game Godlike.