View Full Version : Roleplaying I Need Help Roleplaying my Character

2018-11-15, 08:58 PM
I started a game with the game master a couple of years ago, but we have been on several delays due to real life issues. During all the different times I've never concisely played my character the way I wanted to play him. At first, he started out as a joke, but as I fleshed out his character I realized he was a lot more complex than I had originally thought. I feel as if there are layers to him that I haven't reached yet. My primary question is how would you play the character I'm about to present.

Arvell, the human sorcerer.

He was raised in the capital of the local country during a time known for political change. His mother was in opposition to the new laws being enacted and her lab equipment was confiscated and (Arvell theorizes) she was killed. Arvell fled after his mother's apparent death, and he doesn't know whether his sister and father met the same fate as his mother. Upon escaping the capital he survived in the forest for around a month before being located by a cult and taken in by them. At first, he thought the cult was training him to be a killing machine. Day after day he would do normal tasks, develop his magic, and blend in with the normal cultists. However, he became more suspicious as people around him with magic of their own began to leave his quarters. One day, cultists took him out of the lunch room and put him in a holding cell. As they left he heard he was being sacrificed to their leader. He knew it was a being of immense power, and he didn't want to be on its dinner plate. He escaped by casting a sleep spell on the guard as it passed his cell and fled with the guards uniform and purse into the woods. The cult was on his heels, but he was lucky in his timing and crossed over a large stream before the cult could get members high enough to catch him. After a couple more months in the wilderness, he reached a port town.

That was everything that occurred before the game. There are some areas that I need to be vague on because the GM doesn't like details of his world spilled out, so I've left all names except mine out. After the game began Arvell learned more of the political developments of the country and hates them. He believes that if he were to become the sole leader of the country then it would be better than in the state it's in now. His magic was trained to be physically powerful and his emotions have become numbed due to living with cultists for the past few years. He also should be suffering from paranoia that the cult is actively chasing him as he has only grown to be a better sacrifice throughout his travels.

All in all, I know what I want from him, I just don't know how to play it properly in game. Even when I do have good roleplaying moments I generally play him as a blank state a couple of minutes later.

2018-11-16, 12:08 AM
In what way is your present roleplaying lacking?

You said he started out as a joke. What was the humor in him you saw?

If he started out as a joke, you mean he has a serious chance at becoming a political power in his country?

I see him being a Neutral somehow, NG, CN, NE. He doesn't aid others. He doesn't excuse others for their weaknesses, valuing the strength to survive. He wants to become strong enough to personally stand off the cult. He evaluates tasks in terms of increasing his power, not valuing tasks or quests that won't make him stronger and safer. Wealth may or may not be a vehicle to strength.

Told that a dragon is attacking a village, he wonders what the village will do for him personally if he intervenes. Can the dragon be turned into an ally? Is he strong enough to defeat a dragon, and if so, is he being wasted on these chores? Why do they come to him with a request to fight a dragon? Does he have the reputation of being that strong? Is his location common knowledge?

I'm a little confused why he wants political power if he thinks being famous makes him more in danger of being pursued by the cult. Does he want to rule through others? What's his bloodline btw?

2018-11-16, 06:30 AM
Much of your character's development is very good for a novel or a medium (like PbP) that allows you to work inner monologues and thoughts and emotions into the narrative. However if you play it at a table, much of your thoughts fall by the wayside because you are just the silent introspective guy whose whole character arc is done internally.

His magic was trained to be physically powerful and his emotions have become numbed due to living with cultists for the past few years. He also should be suffering from paranoia that the cult is actively chasing him as he has only grown to be a better sacrifice throughout his travels.

Those traits can likely never been seen as out of the norm. Powerful but unemotional can be seen as pragmatic in a non traumatizing way. Paranoia is normal in an adventuring life. Also it could lead you to be seen as the "edgy guy" whose character constantly monologues about the woeful life as an ex sacrifice (imagine Harry Potter, only edgier).

Your character needs a few traits that are defined and make sense with your backstory but are independant and can be roleplayed regularly. Maybe he is very protective of dear friends (like the party) because he doesn't want to loose the few guys he can actually trust completely? Maybe he is interested in arcane lore beyond the point of any scholar because the first step in defeating your enemy is to understand it. He could try to achieve information (not only via books but also secret organizations or other cults) about the ritual he was planned as an sacrifice. He could - as a charisma caster - easily try to organize a counter organization that stops and thwarts the cult. Or just RP all the major NPCs into liking you so you at least have a warning system if someone of the cult is following you (a network of informants essentially). This could ease your mental stress down to bearable levels and make your character open up to the group.

Also what about his more instinct human desires? Does he like to drink or eat? Which persons does he fancy? Does he have a hobby?

2018-11-16, 08:36 AM
These are traits Iíve developed from what Iíve read so far.

Liars Everywhere: Arvell considers no stranger to be trustworthy, while he will always put on an outward appearance of openness, it is generally fake. He constantly looks for the nearest points of escape, checks doors for locks, and changes location. He generally withholds his name as long as he can within a conversation and will not give his last name willingly. When fighting he attempts to guarantee safety by preventing enemies from escaping.

Cares in Friends: While Arvell doesnít trust the general population, he deeply cares for those he gets to know. He will personally go out of his way to defend them.

What Power Means: Arvell thinks any power one gains should be the result of their own actions. He has large disdain for warlocks and clerics as he sees them as beings sucking up to a greater power. He does believe in fairness and doesnít hate those without much ambition. He just doesnít like anyone he views as succeeding without working their way to where they are.

Know Your Enemy, Your Friend Everything: Arvell does extensive checks for any and all information he can find. While he isnít the best at putting information to use, he has almost an obsession with gathering as much of it as he possibly can.

Hobbies: Arvell enjoys reading, mostly to gain information. When he lived in the capital he practiced the lyre for a time, however, he has since fallen out of good practice with it.