Welcome back, fellow travellers! It is I, Natalie, back for another By Any Means Necessary to talk CHARACTER CREATION with you! We’ve seen parts one and two go down – now for (probably?) the last part. This one is going to be a little more complicated, and heavily looks to the DM’s for guidance. But definitely these are activities your group can work together to do in order to build your party together. Teamwork, am I right?
Let the Party Decide
A great way to get your party to really bond from the get go is to have them help each other in character creation. I participated in one such creation wherein that we had to come prepared with an idea of the character we wanted to play. We would share those details, talking about our character and their family, friends, history, etc. And then, by the end of it all, everyone else would decide what class your character sounded like. It takes the power out of your hands, but it almost helps solidify the character and it feels almost more natural of a progression. The neat thing was we would be able to narrow it down to two classes a lot of the time, which always gave us an idea of what we could maybe multi-class in later, if we felt so inclined. If you’re the type of person who likes to make the call on what class you are, or can’t figure out your character WITHOUT the class, then this might not be the tactic for you. But if you’ve been playing with your party for awhile, and you trust them to make these kinds of decisions, it’s a super fun way to learn about each other out of the gate.
Oh, and before you ask, we rolled for stats AFTER determining the class. Because better. Right? Right. Although. I guess you don’t need to. But that’s how we get wizards that suck at magic. So. You know. Maybe don’t. Or do! I’m not your real mom.
For our company of the grey wolf campaign (which you can listen to here), our DM Joshua put us through a VERY interesting character creation journey for our most recent campaign. Similar to the last tactic, we had to come prepared to share some details about the character. We were prompted to figure out other things as well, which I actually won’t go into a lot of detail as I really think Joshua should do an entire article on this method (*hint hint nudge nudge*), but at the end of the process, the group had to guess (and they were allowed to ask questions) what class *I* had in mind while writing. And then I would share the class I had in mind. Then, if that wasn’t the same, the player would pick one. But that’s not necessarily the class we had. No, instead, our DM opted to run prologue sessions with each character. They were solo sessions before we got in as a group – which, for the record, was an AMAZING way to get really in tune with your character before playing in the group – and at the end of your solo session, you would be faced with a decision, which would clearly lead to either becoming the class you chose at the end of creating most of your character OR another class which the DM thought up for you. This is how we got into our game with us not knowing the class for half the party (for real though, in game, it took maybe 12 sessions before I revealed that I was playing a blade singer; another character is still cloaked in mystery even now). Which feels a lot more realistic at the end of the day. Definitely requires a LOT more effort on the part of the DM but makes for a crazy immersive experience.
Pretty Shiny Sheets
Okay this isn’t really a character creation tactic, so much as an excuse to look at REALLY pretty character sheets that artists have made. That’s the neat thing – there are artists out there who have drawn out some beautiful character sheet templates. So really, just wanted the excuse to show case them below.
Hells bells this is so cool! By John Grümph
And that’s it!! I’m done with character creation. What’s next? Who knows! Tweet suggestions to @chaoticrogue if you’ve got em! But keep watching out for more from By Any Means Necessary – our guide to having fun with RPGs, by any means necessary.