[personal profile] got_quiet2016-07-01 08:14 pm
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Meta - What Makes a Good Character?

I read and watch a lot of game dev stuff talking about narrative design and impactful writing. Here's a nice succinct video about good character.

I've noticed that a lot of people think a good character is a character we know everything about, or one where, if we were to be given a question about they're attitude towards a particular thing can point to canon and find a definitive answer. For me a good character is some is someone who is compelling because they feel just as unknowable as any real person might be. They make you wonder about them and want to know more. And this effect can be achieved very quickly. One of my favorite go to examples is an unnamed minor character in Order of Tales.

At the very beginning of the story our hero goes to the stable and acts petulant over having to choose a mount he didn't want. The stable hand is delicate with him but once he's out he lets out his feelings on the matter.

Soon after, the castle falls under a surprise attack. The hero is targeted and...

Bam! Character! It really only takes a couple of moments in which a character makes a choice to tell your audience what sort of character that is. The more difficult and varied the choices, the more depth, but it doesn't require much to establish a foundation from which players can feel like they know who they're dealing with.