Player Character

Written by

It has been said that a successful game is one that your audience can connect with. We want to ensure that players can identify with their characters so that their avatar becomes an extension of themselves. This bond will hopefully make players more engaged and emotionally invested in what happens within the game. To facilitate this we will offer various ways to customize their appearance which should lead players to think of their avatars as "My Guy". This customized avatar will be used for the players profile picture within the Community Builder Component, chat and forum postings.

Document Note: I think it's important to mention that before any signup, we should give plenty of examples of what the game looks like. Including stuff like screengrabs and a video walk through might increase visitor conversion.

How will it work?

Profile picture with custom avatar

When a visitor to the website creates a user account, they will enter some basic information for their profile and begin the character creation process. We want this to be quick and painless, no extra information should be required. Perhaps we should separate the user account creation from the player character creation?

Then again, I believe that it would be better to combine as much of the sign up process as we can. For example, username and character name could be the same. After registering, the visitor should be directed to the Character Creation screen.

    For User Account we only need:
  • user name
  • password
  • e-mail address
    The Player Account must have:
  • character name
  • gender
  • race
  • class
  • ability scores (str, dex, con, int, wis, cha)
  • skills (appraise, listen, swim) maybe emotes instead?
  • feats
  • physical traits (height, weight, age)

Character Creation

Character Creation application

Currently after a visitor registers they are thanked and left to log in on their own. Once logged in, they can click character and if they don't already have one they can begin the creation process. I propose that we combine character creation with the Community Builder signup. At the very least we should automatically redirect visitors to the character section.

It would be cool to create some type of application with JavaScript and CSS that gives a visual representation of what the character looks like as you are building them. It would start with a silhouette for male or female, followed by hairstyle choice, then color swatches for choosing skin and eye color based on the selected race, and ending with basic equipment determined by their chosen class. For example the fighter would get a wooden sword, the wizard would have a walking stick, a ranger might get a sharpened stick, etc.

Speaking of Race and Class...

Let's list out all of the races and classes that will be available in the game. These are taken from the D20 System. This list can be taken from or added to at will. The ones listed here have detailed stats and descriptions that can be borrowed directly from Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 Player Handbook.

Available races and their preferred class assignments
barbarian bard cleric druid fighter monk paladin ranger rogue sorcerer wizard
human included included included included included included included included included included included
elf included
dwarf included
gnome included
halfling included
half-orc included
half-elf included included included included included included included included included included included

Each race has unique racial traits as described in the D20 System. For example humans get an extra skill point every time they level-up and their physical height is 4’ 10” +2d10 with their weight being 120 lb. × (2d4) lb. During the initial character creation we should try and pre-populate as much physical information as possible with default values and allow the player to override them within a set range if they choose (skin/eye color, height, weight).

Abilities, Skills, and Class Features

The class a player character chooses will effect several areas of the characters development. The list of these abilities and skills is quite exhaustive, but luckily it too is laid out in detail within the Player Handbook. The trickiest part for us will be in finding an effective way to reference all of this information within the database.

More in this category: « Game Play Customization »
Login to post comments