555 – The Council of Erias • 06

555

When I was… oh, in my early twenties… I had a D&D character named Santiago that I dearly loved. He was fast, light, happy, and witty, the perfect swashbuckler. He was heroic and good, the way I would like to be, if I weren’t constantly defeated by the banalities of the real world. He was a half-elf fighter/thief, back in the days before “rogues,” and everyone liked him. He was the perfect fantasy for a geeky virgin kid.

Much more recently, I played a wizard named Veremal. Still good and heroic, but in a more uncompromising “everyone will be saved, now get out of my way” fashion. Where Santiago was all about likability, Veremal was all about power. He planned for contingencies, he outsmarted the villains, he dictated the field of battle, and he won the day. He was the perfect fantasy for an older, but still geeky married guy searching for relevance.

So I started wondering, what makes our favorite characters our favorites? What is the appeal? What is it that these imaginary experiences bring to our lives that make it worth playing?

I am giving everyone here permission to tell me about your character. What does he do that you really dig, and why do you like it so much? What were your favorite experiences with that character, and what was it that made it so much fun? I’m really curious to see how many of us feel the same, or differently, about what it is we get out of the game and the characters we make to play in it.

51 Responses to 555 – The Council of Erias • 06

  1. i have a 15th lvl grey elf wizard named “Dorian the Grey” (maybe not the most imaginative name) but hes my favorite. our d.m. did a scenario where one of the other players had to fight a giant thats was poly’ed into a human for a tournament. we placed bets at 50:1 (i bet 200k) the player won so i walked away with a cool 10 mil then went shopping. needless to say im pretty set for game life. but hes also hedonistic enjoying many pleasures (of the flesh and other indulgences) when we adventure i have to take a retinue of servants to carry all my gear and pleasure slaves. oh the sacrifices i make for comfort.

    • Dorian may not be an original name, but it is a good name, which is a nice step towards favorite character-dom. Mostly it sounds like you’re paying attention to something other than Dorian’s combat life, and getting rewarded for it. (Handsomely!) That’s the easiest way to a best character ever!

  2. My all time favorite character are an elf named Nathandriel Kelemaneril. Yes, “are,” I’ve played four or five incarnations of the character, in games of widely differing styles. Always a very devout Chaotic Good thief, cleric, or thief/cleric of the most rogueish Good-compatible god in the pantheon. Always more impressed with his own abilities as a prankster than they really merit- most of his tricks basically involve loosing monkeys or their closest available equivalent in a room and letting them run wild.

    The reason I love him is A) He’s great comedy relief in a very broad, overplayed style that I don’t normally do at all (I’m quiet, and when I’m being funny it’s usually bone-dry). B) He speaks truth to power. As somebody who is Good but actually devoutly worships chaos and roguishness, his entire life is sticking a big pointy stick in the arrogance of the powerful and escaping to do it again. Wonderful catharsis.

    Oh, and one other thing: Getting to do his trademark great big shit-eating grin.

    • This hits one of my big points behind D&D. I believe that most of us really want to be better people than the world around us would let us be. I think that if we had the ability, (or maybe if we just knew we had the ability) we would be happy to take on the role of hero to our fellow man. Common, daily injustice grates on a person’s soul, but without risking the loss of everything immediate to him, there’s appears to be little he can do… so he goes home and watches his heroes on TV battle the evil for him.

      With D&D, we get to experience being good… and being selfless… personally, even if it is all make-believe. Seems like that’s worth something.

      • I generally like playing characters like Santiago or Nathandriel Kelemaneril. I gravitate towards the jack-of-all-trade classes (Theif/Rogue/Ranger types — even Bard, but not my favorite). I tend to go with Neutral Good / Lawful Neutral / Chaotic Good alignments. I like playing them with the witty / sarcastic style described. Basically, that’s how I see myself in real life — a jack of all trades with a high intelligence and basically a good person but willing to go against the grain if I deem it necessary.

        I’ve played tanks and support, and will really play any character type needed at the time (need an evil cleric, sure, I’ll do it), but given a choice, I’d be a half-elf theif or ranger.

        • Huh, I was going to write one of these, but I think that what I have to say duplicates what Layne has to say.

          That is pretty much *exactly* the kind of character that I play…

          Mind you, I prefer Shadowrun over D&D.

          Am I allowed to say that?

  3. I spend most of my time DMing, but I do have a few that I really loved playing.

    The first is from a D20 Modern campaign I played in last year. I played a man named Dodge Rasley, a detective who had been killed by the mob but then revived by some shady figures to carry out a mission before being released to go back into the world. It’s a long story what all happened, but through the course of the game he went from being a lonely old man with little purpose, investigating a murder for the American government to a decorated national hero, and somehow my friends all decided his name is now synonymous with “badass”, and the phrase “I’m Dodge Rasley”, spoken in a gravely growl, flies across the gaming table all the time.

    My other favorite was a Transmuter I played called Pryor. He’s the only character I’ve ever “broken”, as I don’t like doing it unless everyone else in the party is too. But this one time, I decided to just take it balls to the wall and create the most absurdly powerful character I could. I was level 6 at the beginning of the campaign, and had the ability to make 9 attacks a round with a 30-some strength score. Pryor was also working for the enemies of the rest of the party, and it was fun to play a double agent as such. Eventually Pryor cast off his loyalties to the foes, but never really joined the good forces… rather, he was one of those semi-reliable ally characters. It was a bit of a power trip, but it was fun while it lasted.

    Speaking of breaking characters, I always thought it was hilarious when Freya used to complain that Martin was broken… I mean seriously, she thinks Warlocks are broken? She’d HATE to meet Pryor. ;p

  4. Hum… A character I loved playing was in a D&D game. I don’t recall his name, and it was just a matter of coincidence, but, while my friend and I wanted to do opportunistic half-brothers, our GM didn’t understood that, and thus was constantly baffled as to why we shifted alliances and generally dupped everyone without ever getting caught. It was very fun being such a bastard 🙂
    Another character I like… Well, he’s just mostly happy and living a good life 🙂

  5. My favorite character played was a long-running cleric/wizard. He was helpful, inventive, and versatile, but most of all he was insane. He created absurd reasons for why things existed, or told stories of things that had never happened. His god was the god of eccentricity and madness, and Ren Eskill was anything but stable. Once he willfully removed all knowledge of a recently destroyed player character from his mind, and was thereafter convinced that everyone else in the party was suffering from delusions. Later he self-published a travel guide for the Underdark (a deadly, often inescapable world-wide system of caverns), which often caused city-wide riots where it was sent. And then near the end of his adventuring career, following the inane babble of his god as sage advice, he opened a gate to another plane within his soul during a ritual that involved a bat familiar, a mountain at sunset, a walnut the size of a fist, and a pleasure golem of his own creation – all to try and become the world’s first positive-energy powered lich. All for a good cause of spreading the truth of his god (Zagyg from Forgotten Realms).

    I suppose I enjoyed playing him as it gave me, a scientist and computer techie, a chance to play against type – an unreasoned, erratic character in juxtaposition to my organized, logical persona.

    • That’s awesome. I love that you found such a brilliant way to blow off steam from what must be a very rigid and regimented professional life.

  6. One of my favorite characters in D&D was a human fighter called Motte (which latter became know as Motte the Feeble Dragon Slayer). Motte was part of a game where we all rolled 3d6 for our stats and placed them. I managed to get some really good scores. Five of the six rolls were 13 or over, but among those great rolls came a lowly six. I begged my DM to let me reroll that six, but I was stuck with it. So I used the six for my intelligence.

    Motte was a blast to play; I took the whole “Dumb Fighter” part to new heights. Here is some rope (50 feet), tie up that bad guy Motte. A few minutes later the bad guy was wrapped head to toe in rope. Another time a high level npc insulted Motte. Motte would have been killed engaging the npc if it wasn’t for the party mage. “Motte, feeble means great warrior”. From then on when ever Motte met some strong warriors he would complement them on being such feeble warriors, not as feeble as Motte was, but still feeble.

    But the one part of Motte that my party loved/hated was someone gave Motte a lute and taught him the first to notes/chords of Purple Haze. Whenever there was down time Motte would pull out his lute and begin to play. While visiting a tree city of elves, he annoyed one elf so much that he managed to grab the lute from Motte and throw it over the side. Motte jumped to go after his beloved lute.

    I loved playing Motte and it was all because I rolled a six that I got a chance to play him.

    • That’s just beautiful, Doug. Your story makes me think of one of the reasons I like systems that include character flaws so much. Being the best is nice, but being flawed is interesting.

  7. I have a couple of characters that I love to play.

    The first is Sussurruth, a Whisper Gnome Rogue10/Fighter2/Wizard2/Shadowdancer2, using the class options in 3.5, I made a character who was able to tackle any challenge with aplomb. He carried around a Heward’s, Quiver of Ehlonna, and a Bag of Holding, and he had no idea what was in these items. Ohh, he knew what he’d put in but he was so CN that he didn’t bother emptying the bags and finding out what he had. He’d just stick his hand in and think of an item he wanted and he either got it, or didn’t. Being CN he didn’t even bother with a plan, he would decide where he was going in a dungeon and the party would follow behind, inevitably we always went straight to the Big Boss skipping all his minions, causing much havok and tyind the DM in knots. The best part of that character was making the DM pay really close attention to me, because I wouldn’t speak in character above a whisper. He was the master of stealth after all.

    My second favorite is in the world of Eberron, where I am playing a NG cleric of the Sovereign Host. He started off as a mercenary before he met the group, and he had bad flashbacks about Warforged running rampant through his company leaving him the sole survivor. This dislike of Warforged turned into full-blown hatred when the adventures (Book adventures, not the DM), kept throwing murderous bloodthirsty Warforged at us. My party started off not real sure where I was coming from about “evil” Warforged, but now they don’t even blink when I skin the Warforged for their Adamantine or Mithril skin. I love it! Nothing says doin’ good like genocide!!

  8. I generally play wizards because I like the versatility of the class (until 4E, anyway, but we’re still using 3.5 anyway) and I prefer to play intelligent characters. Still, one of my favorites was a half-ogre (Savage Species version) barbarian/fighter/war hulk named Hazaq. Sounds dangerous as hell and he certainly could be—but you might also see this same hulking monster wearing his spiked full plate armor with little bits of cork on the pointy bits giving piggy-back rides to a dozen kids at a time.

    Scene: Party wizard, trying to teleport the group and realizing what a Large creature does to the teleport limit.
    Wizard: OK, Hazaq, I’m going to cast this feathers spell to turn you and a few of the rest of us into small birds so I can can teleport us all home.
    Hazaq: I like birdies. Dey’s pretty.
    Wizard: Yes. You’ll be a pretty birdy. Now Hazaq—this is important—when we get home, don’t fly away. The spell will wear off and you’ll fall and get hurt. So don’t fly away. Understand?
    Hazaq: Ya, ya, don’t fly away. I gots it.
    [Feathers spell *BAMF*—teleport spell *BAMF*] [flap flap flap flap]
    Wizard, face in hand: He—flew—away.
    Me, to game master: To save time, I’ll just roll the maximum 20d6 falling damage, shall I? *CLATTER* 83 points. No problem. Fortitude save DC 15 for death by massive damage (60 points for Large creature)… *CLATTER* Didn’t roll a one. Saved.
    [Dopplered scream of a plummeting half-ogre] *WHAM*
    Hazaq, face down in a Hazaq-shaped indent in the turf, in a petulant and muffled voice: I’m not a birdie anymore.

    Yes, he was a terror in battle, but I played him for comedy relief.

    • I’ve only come across a couple of “civilized” ogres in my time, and I gotta say they truly are a scene to behold. Insanely hilarious as far as my experience goes.

      Spread your wings and fly free, Hazaq! (Hazard sounds more like it) :mrgreen:

        • I once got the chance to play a very fun angle… man’s attempt to domesticate a baby ogre… named Robakk Skulk-Rak… (a name I recycled from a half-orc barbarian/fighter from another game)

          The DM let me play as an ogre who was orphaned at birth and raised by humans mainly for labor purposes, though the mages and scholars managed to basically tame him and teach a limited vocabulary, anger/emotional control wasn’t so good.

          Luck would have it that this ogre was a “gentle giant” (unless angered) and always wanted to do good. (he really liked the stories of heroes)

          He was quite a fighting machine when needed (or angered… don’t forget angered!) but was quite fun loving, though his antic sometimes got him into trouble. (like playing frisbee with a small water-wheel with a half-dragon)

          He was accompanied/kept in check by another highly intelligent and charismatic PC who really helped with um, “public relations” I guess you’d call it, and helped this ogre do jobs for “shineys” for food.

          I really liked playing this character. I always had the rest of the group laughing so hard. I’ve thought about creating a webcomic about this character’s adventures, but the D&D stuff seems like its really played out.

          Though recently I’ve thought about changing “D&D” to “Fallout” (or something similar) and changing “ogre” to “super mutant” (or something similar, in the case of copyright issues)

          Other than the half-orc barb/fighter, I played whatever the group needed but one thing that carried over between all characters was being the funny one. Always joking around. Robakk the barb/fighter always had something to say. Even when being swallowed whole by a dragon he barked out “I hope you choke on me!” (though he was saved at the last second when a fellow PC cut the dragons tongue off)

          I think the DM may have favored me a little though because I was the only female player we had… the rest of the group either didn’t notice or didn’t mind… I’m not even sure if I played the game as smart or properly as I was supposed to but I liked to keep the group happy and laughing so we all had fun. And that’s what its all about, even if you deviate from some of the rules right?

  9. Well my favorite character is the one I use for my nickname. Tanap Stonebreaker. Prince, Barbarian, Berserker. His father sent him to the finest schools in all the realm, so he was smart, but as with all barbarians they treated him like he was dumb as a box of rocks. My favorite was at the bar when we were first starting a campaign. “Yes, bartender, I would like your finest ale for my friends and a nice bottle of wine for me.” 5 mugs slam onto the bar. “excuse me, where is my wine?” “Barbarians don’t drink wine, they drink mead or ale.” “Did I ask your opinion? I want a bottle of wine, now.” “Are you stupid, Barbarians don’t drink wine.” ……”What did you call me?” “Stu-pid, everyone knows that.” He set off my Berserk and started the normal bar fight that happens quite often at the beginning of our campaigns. Sadly, Tanap had to return home to become King of his peoples many years ago and I haven’t played him since. Maybe it’s time to have him come back with some tragic story. hmmmm.

  10. After played for a while, charecters take on a life of thier own, often supriseing their players with what they do. If the person the charecter becomes is a person you like, the charecter becomes memorible.

    One of the first charecters I ever played, Elven Wizard named Malstin. Quiet, unassumeing, and fairly unflappable, it was mostly his contrast to the rest of the party that made him so memorible. There was the dwarven fighter who either drank it, hit it with a hammer, or ignored it; and the former villian thief who due to a Wish had become a wizard, able to cast any spell of third level or lower, but having no clue what any of the spells did.

    Dwarf: “I’m challenging the entire bar to a drinking contest! First I’m drinking that guy under the table. Now I’m drinking that guy under the table… now I’ma driinking THAT guy unda da tabble… na me’s drinkin wit HIM!”
    DM: “That’s your shadow. Anyway, roll a fortitude check, at -5….-10…-20… you sonofabitch. Okay… the ENTIRE bar, save the party, is passed out, drunk. What do you do?”
    Malstin: “Go around and collect his winnings, and lift everyone’s face out of their mugs so no one drowns in their ale. Then I’m leaving a silver on the bartop for pay, and enjoying a cup of wine in this rare quiet.”

    Thief/Mage: “Hey, I think I’m getting the hang of this! Okay, I’m going to cast Invisibility on myself! Albara- notich- kazzak….
    Malstin: “What? Wait! No! That’s fire*FSOOSH*…ball. ………I’ll get the burn ointment.”

      • Well, I think that most of your readers have gone through that stage of gamer evolution:

        Stage 1: The novice. Everything about the game is new and exciting and even a little scary. “A giant rat? I run away!”
        Stage 2: The BAMF builder. The early stage of the Munchkin is known for building ridiculously minimaxed characters that neglect with one or more overlooked fatal features, like the melee monster that forgets that some combat takes place at range. “My set of numbers can kill your set of numbers!” Some evolve into Munchkins which are not properly a stage of gamer development because after that no one will play with them anymore.
        Stage 3: The Rules Perfectionist. Thinks no one knows how to make a decent set of game rules and either is constantly buying a new game in hopes that this will be the One True Ruleset. Others will make several sets of rules that they think are better than anything out there. Still others will “house rule” a set of rules to death, not realizing that changing a rule can have a cascade effect: changing one rule breaks other rules, which when “fixed” break others, until the whole thing collapses in chaos. The worst of these can be blending what the Rules Perfectionist thinks are the best characteristics of two incompatible rulesets. If you see this in a new game master, pick up your game bag and slowly back toward the door. “I’m doing Call of Cthulhu with Champions rules! Oh, and a few changes of my own.”
        Stage 4: Just Play Already. Having gotten past the hangups over rules and narcissism over their characters, the mature gamer doesn’t care about the rules beyond whether they are playable and the game beyond whether it is fun. That isn’t to say that he doesn’t care about characters or rules but it’s more important that the character is fun to play and that the rules let them play more or less the way they want. That isn’t to say that they never power game or build bad-ass characters but that’s never all they are. The game master and players in the game are just as important as the rules and setting—if the GM and players are good, the game is good.

  11. All time favorite? Rex.

    Rex was a police dog in modern day world where demons walked among us hidden to everyone but the Player characters and the Game Masters minions. Wish I could remember the system. Lots o fun. When Rex ‘came of age’ and started seeing the demons, he went after them. Problem is, when the demon is disguised as a little old lady, the police dog gets put down. Good news is, the demon hunting squad spotted his tallent and saved him from certain death.

    That’s the back story in a nutshell.

    The reason I loved this character. WAY outside the box. Forced me to find ways to communicate that were outside said box. I loved that part, but the rest of the gang… not so much. They decided that my next inate ability would be a limited telepathy so i could communicate better. Grudgeingly I agreed and then proceded to send them telepathicaly exactly what a great dog would send. “Rex stares at you and you are overwhelmed with the scent of rotten meat, not just any meat, but meat that has been left out for over a week. There is a hint of sweat, urin, and feces. Speakinfgof feces, it smells like the depositor of the feces was human. He, yes he, ate mostly (It goes on.) Oh and Jill had sex with Greg in the last few days…. you guys should realy shower more often.”

    OH what a fun character.

  12. Darnos Ironhook was my first and favorite. A hulking half-ogre with an huge hook for a hand, gem of seeing for an eye, girdle of giant strength, and broadsword of giant-slaying. Aside from being a great giant-hunter, he loves Elf-tossing, binge drinking, demolishing Kobold armies, tipping over houses, and wild combat acrobatics. Great comic relief- always cracking his head on low doorways, which makes his gem eye pop out, and landing himself in jail in nearly every town. Hates wizards, but is always teamed up with several and often plays hilarious practical jokes on them- sometimes having them cast stoneskin on themselves and then using them as a bludgeoning weapon.
    Li Shang, a half Elf necromancer/priest of Snake (the temple’s mortician) was the most amusing of my cadre of Snake preists. As adventures went on, he’d have a growing number of exotic zombies following him (whatever they killed along the way), and did some of the creepiest off-the-wall tactics anyone in the group had ever seen. Suprisingly he was wildly effective, and extremely entertaining. He had a boomslang jaculi familiar, pocket-sized Iron Cobras, a wide variety if poisons for his darts, and pack full of odd magical devices that had people on the edge of thier seats wondering what he was going to do next. Usually the DM was so flabbergasted, he’d let the effort succeed just to see what happens.

  13. I used to play Shadowrun way more than I ever played D&D, and since now all I ever do is DM I never get to have a character. But the two characters I liked the best were Chance Matthews for shadowrun, and sadly I forgot the name of my fighter for D&D. AD&D actually. Anyway, Chance first. He was a courier, I put all my points and money into giving him a head computer and cyber-eyes that could record like ten minutes of footage or hold some gagillion gigs of memory in his head. In short, he was Johnny Mneumonic. That movie had just come out and I was way into shadowrun, soooo… anyway. What I liked about him was that he was an uncompromising bastard. If he said he would do something, he did it. And god help you if you got in his way. At one point I did a run that netted me just tons and tons of cash, but shortly after I got attacked on the street by this gang that I had had a run-in with way earlier in the campaign. So, I bought the biggest and best guns and armor I could find, hired a huge troll bodyguard and outfitted him accordingly (think minigun), bought an armored assault car like the police bring into extreme danger zones and stormed those punk’s hangout. Killed everyone and anyone I found in there then came walking out while the building literally fell down around us and yelled to the city at large that I was NOT to be fucked with. Really though, all I ever wanted for that guy was to be a courier. As for my fighter from D&D he was my favorite partly just for the campaign. My friend Jake DMed and had this great classic adventure where we had to gather a bunch of magical gems (12 actually, he called them the zodiac stones, one for each birth-stone) for this all-powerful wizard. Trick was, the gems all imbuied their holder with a different curse. I got the emerald, which imbued my guy with intense greed, and the ruby, which made him fall in love very easily. Interesting combo. We had some great roll-play in that game, which is part of the reason I really loved playing that guy. And once again, he was an uncompromising bastard. Guess that’s just how I like to play my people, cause that’s how I want to be. But life is about compromise, just ask my wife.

      • You know, the funny thing about Chance was that he wasn’t much of a fighter. If it weren’t for the fact that he had a grenade launcher and a Troll with a minigun, as well as military grade body amor, those gangers would have eaten him for breakfast. But what the hell, the point was to make a statement. While talking about combats though (and yes, combat comes up a lot in our games, especially since none of my characters put up with other people’s shit) my D&D fighter had a great one on one fight with a kraken at one point, while Jake’s little brother’s elf warrior was fishing around in a huge pile of treasure in this underground cavern, looking for the mystical saphirre that was hidden in there somewhere. He kept throwing me magical weapons to shoot at the kraken so I didn’t have to go toe to toe with it. Unfortunately it did grab me at one point but I was able to get away when I stuck a spear in its eye. After that he found the gem and we ran away leaving a half-blinded and extremely pissed off kraken behind. I was sure to slap him in the back of the head for making me fight it alone, but we were all just happy we got what we came for. Pity we had to leave behind that pile of gold though. He was literally wading through it looking for that gem.

  14. I play a roundhouse of characters to challenge myself. I want to roleplay in different aspects just to see what happens. I’ve had a great time doing the rounds in alignments and party roles, and doing something different, and heroic is what always brings me back.
    But what sticks in my mind most was being in a high powered game, in dnd 3.0. I was playing the lowest level player, and was most underappreciated. Mephy, an Illusionist/Rogue, once stopped the game because using some clever tactics and illusion spells, trivialized about 3 sessions worth of encounters in caverns FULL of low intelligence dangerous monsters. The poor dm hadn’t prepared 4 sessions ahead, so we went home early that day, somewhat perplexed.
    Before that I’d never thought you could “break” dnd. Now I know better and at least when I gm, I have a few “let’s wing it” kind of filler ready at hand–just in case.

    • As a DM I love moments like that, when the players think of something brilliant that I had never considered. To me that says they’re paying attention and thinking about my game, and that my efforts are in fact NOT being wasted. (Plus they all get to feel really smart about themselves for awhile!)

  15. I think my favorite character was actually a talking sword who also happened to be an heirloom tied to the bloodline of a very old and noble line of knights. However, the only member left of the family (slaying demons and dragons tends to bring down the wrath of said villains’ allies) was a heavy-drinking, ugly, and violence-prone half-orc named Wog. (His great-great grandfather had an orc fetish; don’t go there) Wog was chaotic good, and usually tried to do the right thing, but it wasn’t always clear to him what the “right” thing was. He frequently had to be restrained from simply hitting everyone to simplify the matter. Admittedly, this did make more work for the DM, but there where some truly hilarious dialogues with a half-orc arguing with his sword. Should I add he had 8 intelligence and 6 charisma? (in AD&D)

  16. Noooo…. Kevin, what have you done? Don’t make me start talking about my characters or I’ll be here for hours and hours… even if it’s only the “most favorite ones” it’ll be quite a list, and so many of them have pages and pages of backstory. *twitch* 🙄

  17. Well it wasn’t D&D, but my favorite character was a Mind Mage in Paladium named Lashandra.

    Why? Because Paladium was the very virst RPG out there that had a fantasy character class that had Psionics as the actual focus of the class, and not a “bonus addon that you roll on to get special tricks” We were doing great in the campaign, getting up to the level where character classes really start to come into their own, when we switched GMs to one who hated psionics in all forms…

    He invented a completely new monster, whose only reason for being was to remove the psionics from my character to force her to change classes. I never played Paladium again.

  18. Fav non-D&D charecter, Carak, the noferatu accountant. Quick backstory is that his sire was a very successful thug, needed someone to keep track of all his money. grabs the first egghead he sees, Embraces him, and says ‘keep track of my money for the rest of time or I make you feel as bad as you look.’ couple years of physical and mental abuse later, Sire ticks off the wrong person, has to go into hiding, tells his bookkeeper to go to such and such a place, and wait there for him.
    So this poor little nosferatu, almost no idea how vampire society ACTUALLY works, finds himself alone for the first time in years, with no one telling him what to do, and people actaully being NICE to him….
    slowly, over several months of RP, he comes out of his shell, moving from afraid of his sire to angry, scared of his own shadow to a rather powerful warrior, and a tiny little nobody to a Primogen with a multi-national corporation, mystic powers to boggle the mind, and a court of people willing to follow him to Hell. (Literally. Fun plot there.)

  19. My favorite character was a simple human warrior brute of celtic blood that had the gonads to do a flying tackle at manticore at level three and then try to chop it to bits with his claymore once it bucked him. His name was Jarneth Drathmir and spirits willing, he succeeded. He had such exceptional stats under the most strict AD&D stat rolling rules that he was able to change class to wizard later on. That was only after he had learned to use a whip to call a deathblow upon any creature what was 18 hit dice or less. Yet it was not his battle prowess that was worthy of remembrance, but his outlook on life. He was always the one to fight for the underdog. He came from a childhood where the strong preyed upon the meek, and he believed in his Chaotic Good mind that power was only of proper use when it was used to shield the weak from the brutishly strong. He took up and lead the fight against a Great Wyrm Shadow dragon named Adumbral that had oppressed his people for generations, and after defeating the beast and turning its hide into armor was left with nothing of mortal means he could imagine to surpass this feat. He than became a wizard and set about lending his magic to the plight of the common laborer and soldier. Building magical furnaces for a smithy or creating creature comforts for the soldiery in the local garrison was what he did once he was already a national hero. Later he put all his resource into helping all the people and creatures of his realm flee the overwhelming darkness that was set upon conquest of the world. (They were played by the evil group of players we had running amok in the world) He opened the way to another world and shepherded Human, Dwarf, Elf, Tabaxi, Gnome, and Halfling alike through while trying to maintain intricate illusions to distract his foes. Though I now only get to use this character when I DM as a force of “behind the scenes” good to offer players an option to take the high road, he remains my favorite character ever simply because he managed to not die enough times to amount to what I always wished I could be in life, the guy who stood up for the little guy and always won.

  20. I have had many characters mostly at the expense that the other DM in my old group would kill us off at the end of the campaign and normally he would decide to end it at the end of the session.

    One of my favorites was my trusty PHB 2 druid, while in actuality weaker than a normal druid (by a lot) he had good stat rolls, and was tough as nails a real combat druid. On top of this at character creation (I think level 3, or 5) we rolled on a random set of charts to decide if we got any special abilities (we were forced to take flaws, and this was the reward) I obtained the insectoid template (savage species) and argued it using back story to grant it as part of my animal form ability. Being a hardy mercenary from a mercenary people (humanish) so I got it as a gift from Lolith when I saved a priestest from a miss-casted summons. Either way this character became strong fast mostly from incredible luck.
    But my character also cared about what was going on in the messed up world we were in, driving towards solving problems. Of course being forced to draw from the deck of many things had some odd effects on him. (we are not given options about the deck minimum two cards) my two were draw two more and servant (level 4 fighter) the other two gave me piles of XP and shot me up to level 12. So of course with 6 arms and lots of xp I picked up some multi weapon fighting and bracers of daggers (I could throw 18 daggers per round) I was scary strong, and I later exploded a huge size turtle that swallowed the party by summoning a bigger elemental of water. Still this was not what was important about my character to me, what was important was that while not the party leader, I was the most reliable character in the party, I held off monsters, angry tavern patrons, lusty tavern patrons, and horrible abominations. not always with combat but using tact, and diplomacy. (of course I did cast flaming sphere on a patron that had tried to seduce my servant with magic, but he had it coming).

    Not the best hero I admit, but he was my idea that power is to be used to help those you care about, as well as others. Unless they decide to push you, and try to take advantage of you like the jerk that got a flaming sphere to the face.

  21. They say you always remember your first and they’re right. Here’s my first fighter and mage from a homebrew system.

    Caber of the Golden Anvil clan: A dwarf fighter of exquisite skill with dual axes. Immune to fear of any kind, both natural and magical, not even dragons could make him pause. Eventually earned a reputation of being brutal to those who threaten his friends after a series of odd hit location rolls while saving a kidnapped friend resulted in a fleeing brigand having all four limbs crippled by axe blows while trying to run away. Always careful of what he said because his word is his contract, and a contract is never broken. Briefly known as “The Beardless One” until his hair grew back after setting off three fireball traps in one day.

    Random del Rey was an elf priest of the god of knowledge. Endowed with unusually high strength and low personal appearance, the church loved to send him on excursions because he tended to come back with more money than they sent with him. A well known cheapskate who more than once got his hirelings to pay for HIS room at the inns. Also well known for stumbling through magic portals just to see where they went and for maiming a good friend in order to save the friend’s life. Quotes include “I respect all life, I just respect my own much more than others” and “I do not hold the dwarf’s race against him. It’s not his fault he wasn’t born an elf.” It’s widely believed he only lived for so many years because of his regeneration, as he frequently disagreed with others in the party about their expendability. He was rarely seen without the presence of his faithful familiar, a 30 pound day-glo orange tabby.

  22. My most recent character was a Hacker/assassin droid named C3LPi, or Lupis, in a star wars dungeon. He worked with several Jedi, who made up the rest of the party, and curbed his somewhat homicidal nature. His specialisation was hacking into and subverting enemy installations, or planets, in his quest to stop various sith and separatists. His personality is typical of the characters I usually play, which are often wizards or sorcerors, in that he is homicidal and merciless, but only to evil creatures and characters, but rather virtuous in general. The most satisfying moments their playing careers are those of extreme devastation, from completely destroying an enemy city to (in the case of the sorc/wiz characters) finding a long hallway full o’ low-level monsters while having an enlarged lightning bolt prepared.
    the pinnacle of Lupin’s badassery was also the last session of the game in which he existed, when he, in his shiny new gigantic battlesuit, rocket-launcher’d a mass of force-goo that was turning into a sith god from the dawn of time. good times…

  23. Way late to the party here, but I just discovered this comic and have been reading through the archive.

    My favorite character was actually an NPC. A friend did a lotr game, and I ended up being DM’s assistant because I knew the lore (and had never RP’d before). She wanted a Gandalf-like character to play the same role Gandalf did in the Hobbit, and thus Melfina was born. (and yes, I know none of the Istari were female, but I felt the need to strike a blow for gender equality)

    She could teleport at will, knew far more than the PCs, and was half-mad (being captured and tortured by Sauron did not do her any good). Things went well until the party hit Rivendell. Melfina had an underwear fetish, and well, Lord Elrond gets very grumpy when all his underwear goes missing. Guess those robes are a bit drafty.

    The game died soon thereafter, and I’ve never managed to figure out how to turn Melfina into a PC in any game. But she lives on as my internet alter-ego.