On the Shoulders of Dwarves

Compelling Characters (Episode 102)

On the Shoulders of Dwarves
Compelling Characters (Episode 102)
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What makes a player character compelling? # Uri’s take (01:04) What makes a player character compelling? - They don’t snugly fit into a stereotype. We’ve talked about avoiding stereotypes and cliches in the past ([Episode 2 - avoid character cliche](https://dwarves.podiant.co/e/avoiding-character-cliches-episode-2-35aab600eb0406/)). And it’s fine to build on a stereotype, actually many RPGs railroad us to fit into some stereotype in order to conform with the trope of the genres that they are aiming at. In D&D it’s difficult to create a smart fighter because your class often pigeonholes you to a role. But i’m talking about more than that. If you find that one trope can mostly define your character (“the strong silent type”,”the dumb fighter”), add more. - They have evolved and they will evolve. They have a history behind them and a future in front of them. A character that doesn't have a development is the child-turning into a hero story but they are usually not very interesting. They focus on the second part. Of the current development. - They want something Goals. Goals let us understand what the characters want, so we can estimate how well they do and where they compromise. Some great ways to create goals for your character is having short term goals and long term goals. Another approach is having something that you run toward and something that you run from.  - Values and morality. Internal struggles are what truly reveal a character's character. And these are always the results of values and morality. Choosing between finishing off the goblin king or healing your wounded friend is a question of morals. - They win some and they lose some. Heroes that never lose are not interesting. They may not lose in the quest or combat but they do lose something, their innocence, their goals, their friends. There must be sacrifice.  # Eran’s take (10:38) - I’m interested in their upcoming journey. Where will this lead them? What decisions are waiting for them, and how will they make their choices?  - Their colorful past makes them mostly predictable. I can imagine X interacting with Y, because I know them well thanks to their well-defined mannerisms and preferences.  (Uri: the [*La Ronde*](http://improvencyclopedia.org/games/La_Ronde.html), play style is an exercise in creating well defined characters) - You might also like to read Uri’s article: [How Uri Plays Consistent Characters](https://dwarves.podiant.co/How-Uri-Plays-Consistent-Chars/) - They stand for themselves. They’re kinda badass, in whatever field they specialise in. Even the small, sickly boy is not a caricature of mumbling, he’s *conquering* his situation, or at least shows signs he’s capable of it. # Summary (21:26) Make your characters compelling  * * * # Taking the load off (22:50) **Uri**: Have been playing an actual tabletop session on top of an actual table. An also talked with his GM about his character romantic interests.  **Eran**: Check out my bundle!  [https://www.dmsguild.com/product/311947/Adventures-Three-BUNDLE?affiliate\_id=29668](https://www.dmsguild.com/product/311947/Adventures-Three-BUNDLE?affiliate_id=29668) * * * Email us at [show@dwarfcast.net](mailto:show@dwarfcast.net) with questions, topic suggestions, and comments, and check out [our Facebook group](https://www.facebook.com/groups/dwarfpodcast). We have a [Patreon page](https://www.patreon.com/dwarfcast), in case you'd like to support us in a monetary fashion. Also, most links to [DriveThruRPG are affiliate](http://drivethrurpg.com/?affiliate_id=29668), which means we get a bit of money if you buy through them, with no added cost to you. Intro and outro based on On the Shoulders of Dwarves by the Cliches Duo. On the Shoulders of Dwarves is shared under [Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International](https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/). * * *
Brought to you by Eran Aviram of On the Shoulders of Dwarves