Monday, 19 March 2012

[GW2] Character Diversity - 10% them, 90% you

Character creation is split up into 3 primary areas.

Firstly, there are the things you can’t change –the constants. I.e.: Charr are always going to have large sharp teeth. Some charr might have smaller teeth than others, but they will always be pretty fang-y. There are tonnes of examples: asura will always be small, norn will always be big, humans will always have 2 legs, 2 arms etc etc etc. This is the base upon which you build your character – fiddle with the sliders all you like – you can’t change them.

Second, we have the in-game character creation and progression: made up of the vanilla character creation tool and the subsequent levelling and advancement methods (traits, weapons, armour, skills and story). This is the first instance of you being able to step into the creation process. Although you’re limited to the options provided by ArenaNet – the sheer number of design choices, sliders, skin/hair colours, dyes, weapons, traits, racial and profession skills and story choices means that it is highly unlikely you will bump into your doppelganger.

ArenaNet have really shined here – they’ve given the community the tools to pretty much build whatever character they like and to give them a background which is compelling and impactful upon the storyline. 10% of character creation will happen here, and that’s where a lot of players will stop – they will be happy to play the game through and enjoy every moment of it.

The final section is where the other 90% comes in – this is the magical fairy dust section. ArenaNet have given us the tools to build a brilliant avatar, give them a compelling backstory and have provided a beautiful world for them to run around in. Thats the 10%.

The 90% is what we make of it – it’s role-playing the bandit on the roads between The Grove and Rata Sum, it’s sitting slumped in the corner of a Hoelbrek tavern singing salty sea shanties and hurling abuse at passing hylek, or it is simply being in the world and meeting other people. Ultimately, character creation doesn’t stop once we’ve made the avatar, neither does it stop once we’ve reached max level or defeated all the dungeons, these are just tools and shells which we place around our own personality. The true character diversity in Guild Wars 2 will not come from the character creation options or the game progression, but from the people who play it.

This post is part of the GuildMag Blog Carnival: Character Diversity

1 comment:

  1. Very nice, succinct point. The game experience really is what you make of it. I think we often forget that or take that for granted.



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