Consistency is my hobgoblin (rollick) wrote in roleplayers,
Consistency is my hobgoblin

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Always a sidekick, never a bride

So. I was putting together a character for a Changeling game that a friend of mine is starting up. Looking over the description I wrote, I realized that I'd consciously typed the character as a "minor sprite," the kind of thing a more powerful Changeling character might have as a chimerical companion.

And it occurred to me for the first time that virtually all the PCs I create are like this: support characters for someone else's story. Bodyguards. Backup. Followers. "Flavor" characters. I don't create heroes, I create their lackies. Not actual servitors, because I wouldn't have much fun playing a weak-willed character in an ongoing, open-ended campaign, but still adjuncts and helpers rather than Hero Protagonists.

Which got me wondering. In every game I'm involved in, there's at most one or two people who actually want to be The Hero, who want to lead the group and take charge of the story and be "first in every desperate attack and last in every desperate retreat," to quote C.S. Lewis. Those players seem to be in the minority, but without them, less would get done.

So here's a brief text poll, for my own curiosity:

1) When you first create a character, do you consciously consider how it's likely to function in relation to other PCs?

2) Do you generally think of your characters as stars in their own story, part of other characters' stories, or members of an equal team?

3) Would you be content playing an otherwise involving and well-run campaign where the main focus was always on someone else's personal plotline, and you were just helping them achieve their private goals rather than concentrating on your own?

4) Does it vary widely from game to game whether you're playing a leader or a follower, or do you tend to stick to roughly the same sorts of roles?

5) Have you ever played a character that was completely subserviant to another PC (a squire, servant, ghoul, etc.) for any length of time? Did you enjoy it, or did it become frustrating?

6) In considering the above, does it make a significant difference to you whether you're playing in a tabletop game or a LARP?

Discussions welcome.

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