The Role-Playing Character Quiz
Whipped up by j_cat
Characters mentioned within:
Laughing Lady, Seraph, Fyiara, Cyprian, Elf, Terry, Sharra.
What medium do you use? (ex: Dungeons and Dragons, MUDs, Live Action, hand puppets, etc.) :
From 1978-1996, I mostly did tabletop roleplay. From 1997-2007, mostly MUCK. 2007-2008, mostly PBEM. 2009 has been mixed between PBEM and MUCK. I still do the occasional guest stint in tabletop roleplay, but I've not been in a regular tabletop group since '96. I actually did some of what's arguably roleplay on Furry from 91-'96, but for purposes of this quiz, I'm limiting myself to games with a GM, or at least something that looked sort of like a GM or had a structured format of some kind.
For systems, I've used (in semi-chronological order):
AD&D (mostly 1.0. I made two abortive attempts at 2.0 that lasted less than a session. A few of jordangreywolf's sessions used 3.5, I think)
Hero System: Champions (homebrew mix of 3.0 and 4.0).
Vampire: World of Darkness
Mage: the Ascension
+Terrible Butterflies+ (homebrew)
And probably some others that are slipping my mind.
Who are your favorite characters?
"Favorites" are hard to pick. I'll select some memorable ones from over the years.
The Laughing Lady (NPC): From the Honored PBEM. The Honored were the native people in the setting, and for certain reasons, it's extremely difficult and rare for Honored to use violence or any kind of force against one another. As a result, their government was more akin to cat-herding than ruling as such. The Laughing Lady was one of the city's Regents, a physically imposing sphynx bejeweled with her honor. She had an air of authority, a certain mental toughness and social fearlessness, and a kind of irreverence. She was very old, not at all frail, and didn't take herself -- or anyone else -- too seriously. She only had a brief appearance on-camera, but was surprisingly popular with the players when she came up in OOC chat.
Seraph (PC): bard_bloom's +terrible butterflies+ game is one of my favorite games ever, and certainly the game I had the most fun playing, but I don't know that my character from the game is really my favorite PC. All of the +terrible butterflies+ were insane, and Seraph was no exception. When Seraph was born, she thought she was an angel, sent by God to wreak vengeance upon Stefan by killing him and possessing his body to make restitution for his sins. She thought her powers were gifts from God. Seraph went through a number of transformations over the course of the game. She soon lost her belief that she was an angel but held onto her Christian faith, and did not quite let go of it even when she was told (by people who were in a position to know and who had no reason to lie) that Christ was a hoax perpetuated by an astral mage pretending to be God. She was always trying to do the Right Thing, and often struggling to figure out what that was, with thousands of human lives hinging on her decisions. She's also one of the few PCs I've played who's fallen in love -- maybe the only one -- and that romance became the center of her life; it was the one thing that didn't change while the whole of the world fell out from under her. She had some great scenes.
Fyiara (NPC): The Dean of Chaos Magic at the College of Magic on Sinai. She first showed up in a log that was overrun with NPCs, and expressed my frustration with my own difficulties in managing the situation by being bored, irreverent, and informal in a situation where all the other NPCs were overbearingly serious, formal, and preoccupied with minutiae. She went on to other supporting roles, and got further fleshed out: she was in charge of her sphere magic because she was the least-unacceptable candidate for the job. She really was an excellent Chaos Mage and a good academic and researcher, but she was at best a mediocre Dean; organizing and leading were talents quite beyond her. She called everyone "sweetie", or by their given names, in a setting where everyone used titles and surnames. Fyiara is one of the few female characters I've ever made that I really like.
Cyprian (NPC): During my first appearance on Sinai, as assistant GM to Greywolf, I created Cyprian as a throwaway NPC implementing one of the puzzles of the session. One of the PCs for that session, brennabat's Elise, liked the NPC so much that she wanted to talk to him again. Cyprian was an Eeee (a humanoid bat), a citizen of Babel, and a mind mage. He had a number of conflicting loyalties -- to his people, to his country, to his sinister gods, and to the college of magic. I used him as an example of why good people believe in and worship evil gods: because to those people, those gods are real. You don't sacrifice sapients to the gods because you want to, but because you don't have any choice, because the gods will destroy you and everyone you care about if you don't. Not believing in them and not worshipping them won't make them go away. Cyprian was intensely private and controlled, with sociopathic tendencies that he overrode via a prosthetic conscience he'd invented out of magic and implanted on himself. He was pretty messed up overall. He and Elise had a long-running forbidden love that was never consummated.
Elf (PC): One of the characters from the Polaris superhero game I played in college. Chris was a good-natured college student who worked part-time at a day care center. One of his hobbies was role-playing, and his friends called him "Elf" because "Well, he's an elf. You can just tell." He got turned into an actual pointy-eared elf by a supervillain who was mind-controlling him. After the heroes rescued him, he was turned into a PC because both I and some of the players liked him. His powers were not particularly interesting -- I think he had flight and martial arts -- but he was involved in some interesting story arcs, including a reprise encounter with the original supervillain that had made him. I think he's the only tabletop character I had who ever got seduced. By another PC, even.
Terry, the Thief from Argus (PC): From a high school-era D&D game. She was the first PC I had whose adventures had some actual narrative structure: she was a 14 year-old street urchin in a small city named Argus, which had a lot of empty building. Her adventures started when the city's army returned after several decades, looking for reinforcements and support. Reaction from Argus: "We're at war? We have an army?" The army wound up annexing the city and throwing a number of the citizens in oubliettes dug in their camp outside the city. It was silly in a way that still made sense; I enjoyed it enough that I wrote the first several chapters of it out in novel form. The book petered off when the story-like structure of the campaign started to unravel, and it no longer seemed like a single story with a continuing plot.
Do you play characters that are not of the gender you identify with?
When I'm GMing, frequently. My PCs are usually female, though. I like to have gender-balance in games, so I'll be male if everyone else is female, but that doesn't happen very often. Seraph's human body was male in part because most of the other PCs were female.
Who was your first character?
I think she was a human cleric. With a hammer. I was 8 years old and didn't play her for more than a couple of games, so it wasn't very memorable.
Who is your latest character?
For PCs, the latest is Kythera, a demanding, petulant, and arrogant dragon somewhat in the vein of the dragons in bard_bloom's Mating Flight. The PBEM she's in doesn't exactly have a GM, though. If I don't count Kythera, the next most recent is Harley, a modern 'taur: half human and half motorcycle.
Most Popular Character?
I'm not sure. Fyiara, maybe.
Which character is most like you?
Most of my PCs are like me, only shaped by a totally different background and with actual drive and/or ambition to do something and not just muddle through life. Especially when it comes to questions of "how?" as opposed to "what?" The one that reminds me most of myself ... um. Sharra, my shapeshifter from the Polaris game, I guess.
Who would you like to be more like?
Seraph, if she were actually sane. Yay, incredible cosmic power! I generally like the traits I tried to embody in her -- loving, dedicated, and a good moral sense. She didn't really turn out much better at implementing them than I am, which really isn't surprising when you think about it.
Who’s the character you love but have never played?
There's one character that I have tried to play three times, with three different GMs. Each of the games died after one session or less. Details varied, but the basic concept was: "She has a power, second sight, which lets her see perceive spirits and receive visions that are imperceptible to other people. She also has a disad: hallucinates. She can't tell the difference between actual spirits and hallucinations." I always thought that would be neat to play out, but never really got to.
This is already pretty long, and the later questions don't interest me as much, so I'll cut it here.
But I wanna know: who're your own favorites of your characters?