Creating great LARP characters is essentially the same thing as creating great characters for Dungeons and Dragons. After all, in both these cases, you’re developing a thorough character that you can embody and role-play with.
This article will provide some tips on how to create compelling characters that you can play.
Start with a Concept
Before you create your character, have an idea of who they are, what they do, and what motivates them. This will help you create a more well-rounded and interesting character.
Think about what you want to play. Do you want to be lawful or chaotic? Good or evil? Rich or poor?
Pick something that fascinates you and seems fun to play, and you can’t go wrong!
Develop a Backstory
One way to make your character more compelling is to give them a unique backstory. This can include things like their childhood, their family, their past experiences, or even a traumatic event that shaped their personality. You can also consider the character’s motivations and goals, which can give them a sense of purpose in the game.
By having a well-crafted backstory, your character will feel more like a real person rather than just a collection of stats on a character sheet. You’ll be able to make your character come to life better when you know who they’ve been in the past.
Pick Your Class & Race
When creating a character for D&D, it’s important to consider the class and race you want to play. Different classes have different abilities and playstyles, so choose one that fits with your character’s backstory and personality. Similarly, different races have different strengths and weaknesses, as well as their own unique cultures and histories.
Choosing a race that fits well with your character can help create a more cohesive and interesting character. Make sure that your choices align with the concept you started with.
Add Some Personality
Another way to make your character more interesting is to give them a strong personality. This can include things like their quirks and mannerisms.
Think about how your character interacts with others and what kind of impression they leave on people. Do they have a quick wit? Do they have an annoying catch-phrase that everyone hates? Are they hot-headed? Are they overly trusting?
These traits can make your character stand out and create more interesting interactions with other players and NPCs.
Embrace the Flaws
Nobody’s perfect and your character shouldn’t be, either! Think about their weaknesses, fears, and shortcomings. This will make them more relatable and interesting to play.
After all, conflict is at the heart of any good story, and the same is true for roleplaying games. Consider giving your character some flaws or weaknesses that can create conflict with other players or NPCs. This can lead to more interesting interactions and can create opportunities for character growth and development.
Some ideas for character flaws could include:
Get a Goal
Every great character has a goal they’re working towards outside of the LARP, campaign or story they are currently participating in. This goal should be their overarching life purpose.
This can be something as simple as accumulating wealth or as complex as overthrowing a corrupt government. Having a clear goal will give your character direction and purpose – and it can create some opportunities for epic and memorable side quests!
Develop a Voice
Using a unique voice or accent can help bring your character to life and make them more memorable to other players. Remember – your character doesn’t have to sound anything like you!
In real life, I am incredibly lawful-good sort of person… but when I play Dungeons and Dragons, I leap off the deep end into chaotic neutral territory. It’s a chance to interact with the world in a completely different way. My darling character is snarky, sarcastic, mean and impulsive – things I am most decidedly not in real life.
And that makes it more fun for me to play and more fun for people to play with me, because they know they’ll see a whole side of my personality that doesn’t come out otherwise!
Creating connections to other characters in the game can make your character more integrated into the story and provide opportunities for interesting role-playing.
Are your fellow players your friends or enemies? Old colleagues? The more relationships you can build within the game, the more interesting your side quests and subplots can become.
Go All In
You’ll more fully embody your character as you think about their voice, backstory and personality. Getting in costume and practicing an accent can also help you get into character better.
One way to get into character is to adopt physical cues that match the personality and characteristics of your character. For example, if you are playing a confident and charismatic character, you might stand up straight and speak in a clear, commanding voice. On the other hand, if you are playing a shy and timid character, you might hunch your shoulders and speak softly.
When you play, try to stay in the moment and respond authentically to the situations and challenges that arise during the game. Avoid breaking character by using modern slang or referencing things that are out of place in the game’s setting. Instead, try to think and act as your character would in the moment, even if it means making choices that are different from your own personal preferences.
Develop & Grow
People change over time and your character should, too! Experiences shape people. That should be reflected in your game play, so be open to new developments and plot twists that change your character over time.
Over the course of your play, you will encounter challenges and adventures that can shape your character’s personality and goals. Embrace them!
In conclusion, creating compelling characters for D&D is all about developing a well-crafted backstory, a strong personality, and fitting within the world and story that the DM has created. By considering the class and race, collaborating with the DM, and embracing conflict, you can create a character that feels like a real person and adds to the overall story and experience of the game.