Friday, May 1, 2009

Friday Discussion: Tell Me About Your Favorite Character (Really)

For last week's Friday Discussion, we chatted about our first RPG characters. Well, several people thought it would be a good idea to discuss our favorite character. Hey, I'm game. So, I can't believe I'm typing this, but:

Tell us about your favorite character you've played. Bonus points for naming system, relevants stats/details, and how they met their grisly end (or when they retired). Liars and exaggerators welcome as always! Treat this like a B.S. session at your Friendly Local Gaming Store.

Readers, thanks for a great week, remember to have fun, and have a tremendous gaming weekend!


Jonathan Hicks said...

My favourite character... there's been a few favourites. Mornard Winter in WFRP, Matthew Haskenn in MechWarrior, Zeke Greyfellow in Shadowrun, Goah Galletti in Star Wars...

But my absolute favourite was Tere Swordsong in MERP. He was a Scout but acted more like a Ranger and started out with very poor personality stats. Even though it was MERP my excellent GM Paul, who deserves most of the credit for his fabulous adventures, treated it more like a fantasy Europe and even though we touched on Middle Earth mythology we never delved too far into it, if at all.

Tere was a proper goodie two shoes at first, but when he pretty much raised an army to fight a bad guy called Seomund he was beset by all the problems of leadership - finding allies, supplies, morale and the rest of it. His decisions came back to haunt him over several games for a couple of years afterwards, what with disgruntled relatives of soldiers who died in his army blaming him for their loss and seeking revenge, or old adversaries thought dead coming back. He freed elven slaves from a corrupt city, lost an eye, married an elven maiden he had fallen in love with to strengthen the bonds between his army and the elven nations in his war and, in the last game I played him in back in 1991, had retired and bought the very inn where he had started his adventures in 1988, and had two sons and a daughter whom he named after the friends he had lost.

Tere was a cracking character - he was flawed as in he would not take control as a leader in any situation after he saw the results of his own leadership after the war with Seomund, and in the end he was loathe to go adventuring as he was afraid he would be parted from his family. He was a great personality and a pleasure to play.

I even remember his last line in the very last game he was in. he was in his fifties (we'd played thirty years of his life out in solo games), had got to quite a high level and he had saved the land a couple of times and had been sought out and pushed into questing by all kinds of people, mainly for their own ends. He was asked by a Prince in the neighbouring kingdom to help with a troll problem. Tere was behind his bar, the Prince asked him if he would help. He looked at his inn, his children and his wife and he said with a smile - 'You know... I don't think I will.'

Loved him.

Zachary The First said...

Man, one response thus far. Last time I take recommendations for a Friday topic! :) And this may be the first time gamers have NOT rushed to tell people about their characters...

rainswept said...

Let's have a tearful moment of silence for those of us who are 'career' GMs, and in 25 years have never been a player of any character for more than a single session someone elses' campaign.

dicemonkey said...

@rainswept: Ouch. I can't imagine NEVER having played a PC. I'm primarily a GM, but occasionally, I force my players to run something so I can get in on that action.

@Zachary: I enjoyed hearing what you had to say about Pathfinder on the last Tome Show. That said:

My favorite character was Savrip the Kobold Lich. The wonders of 3.5 allowed me to make a kobold who worked in a wizard's lair, learning his ancient secrets before killing his master and becoming a lich. He constructed a Shield Guardian, making his eyes glow red, then placing a black robe over the massive body. He would cast all his necromantic spells through his shield guardian, and letting the guardian take all the hits. To any enemies they encountered, it looked like the Shield Guardian was the necromancer, and Savrip was just an undead kobold minion. It worked out phenomenaly.

Another favorite was Arlis the Tiefling Cleric of Pelor from 3.5 who sought to redeem himself for what he was by being a champion of virtue and good. He was a very deep and conflicted character.

Zachary The First said...

@dicemonkey: Hey, thanks for listening! Hope I didn’t come off as too boring. ;)

Scott M said...

My favourite character is actually one that I'm running at the moment for Tunnels and Trolls (of course).
His name is Galneth Ydrech, a level 3 Elven Warrior.
DEX 25
CON 11
CHA 25
LK 12
IQ 15
SP 13
WIZ 13
Adds: +13
Missile: +25
Armour: 31

The reason I love this character is simple: he's still alive. Generally T&T characters, especially when playing solo games, don't have a great lifespan. The fact that he is level 3 is testament to his awesomeness.
Oh, and he has an enchanted terbutje (3d6+10) called Sally.

Gleichman said...

I so can't do this... brain locks are holding firm.

Systems I can talk about, but not my characters. Those stay at home where they belong.

Zachary The First said...

@Gleichman: You're stronger than many of us. I usually ward against doing it at cons, but I'm more permissive online. :)

Mark Gedak said...

For the longest time, my primary character has been a halfling bard named Farnir. He has appeared in many guises in many world and many campaigns. Always he has a couple common traits:

1) He uses halfling skiprocks as his primary weapon choice. Rarely does he touch a melee weapon and only out of necessity.

2) He is a little more annoying to the other players every time I play him.

Some of Farnir's more annoying habits have been:

1) Instrument selection - his primary instrument choice is the cymbals, that he will clang, clang, clang all adventure long. He's also used the bagpipes and an old recorder (when I found one in my trunk from grade 5 or 6).

2) Poetics - at times he has completed all the verbal components of his spells with either limericks or haikus

3) The Charisma-y guy - once, just once, the party elected him party spokesperson. Whenever introduction the party they would be Farnir and the People Who Tag along. He would then introduce each other character by mispronouncing their names and adding and insulting title. When introducing himself, he would add one title to his name each time he was asked who he was:

Farnir, Defender of the Glen...
Farnir, Defender of the Glen and Champion of the Oppressed...
Farnir, Defender of the Glen, Champion of the Oppressed, Slayer of Winter Wolves who prey on small children, ...

Strangely, the other players seem to prefer that I most stick to DMing. [sigh]

Still as I DM I have Skeckzi, the Nagpa who talks like the vulture men in the Dark Crystal and Timmy the Bullette to entertain me.

Will said...

I was almost always the DM, but there is one char that I'm currently playing and really love. Well, there are two, but I'll just talk about the one...

Tor is an escaped clone from the Star Wars RPG Saga Edition. He was in training for Spec Ops when Kal Skirata "killed" him and smuggled him out. He had his clone armor converted to true beskar'gam and travels as a Mandalorian mercenary. He captains the ship Arkham Razor with his friend and comrade Gabriel, an exile from a noble family on Naboo. After the Empire's rise to power the two lived on the fringes until Senator Bail Organa took them under his wing to begin the fledgling Rebel Alliance...

Pukeko said...

Hope it's not too late, not being Friday, but I've never thought about this question till now...

My favourite, from a long line of wizards, rangers and elementalists, was a Rolemaster 1st Ed Paladin, from one of the extra books. Back then RM made sense, too. Named Thalion, all the rest of the party were paladins, too, of a corrupt, broken realm, beset from all sides. Didn't make the 1st adventure, as broke a leg in a random encounter (RM - a REAL critical hits system), later fought side-by-side with doomed dwarven warriors, travelled to the elven kingdom, fell in love with an elven thief, hunted & killed vampires, fought an epic battle with a legendary demon spider, and perished defending a city from a dragon. Seriously, the super-large creature critical table has a result close to 'blow to heart kills opponent who falls on the attacker, dealing a huge amount of damage'. Good ending for a paladin who was considering sailing to the new land and giving up the faith. A morally ambiguous character who was bound by duty which often conflicted with the 'right' thing to do.

Zachary The First said...

@pukeko: Never too late!

rpgcharacters said...

Darlene Karvorof - international spy. My second character for the original Top Secret RPG. She's played through every official Top Secret module and all the ones in Dragon as well as nearly a dozen more along the way. She has multiple levels in all three of the departments of the core game - with the least levels in the assassination bureau (which was the most common bureau in our teenage games - surprise surprise).

Her standard cover is that of a jet-setting corporate efficiency expert. With her very high courage and willpower she storms through most situations leaving people open-mouthed and chasing after her for approval, instead of trying to stop her.

David Nett said...

An easy one for me -- my favorite character is the one I've made internet-semi-famous as Jon Drake's character in GOLD: Lexall Flaggstaeff.

In the GOLD world, Lexall is a Drow Elven Priest/Mage in the game Goblins & Gold. But in the real world, he was my first ever character:

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (1e)
Lexall Flaggstaeff
Drow Elf Fighter/Mage/Thief
Level at death: 7/8/9
2-handed combat weapons:
Longsword +2/+3 Frostbrand
Dagger +2

Lexall was brought into a party which had just survived the Scourge of the Slave Lords, and was entering Against the Giants/Queen of the Spiders. He started mid-level (I think 3/3/3 or something) and, despite being regularly unconscious, because the rest of the party was so high level, he moved up fast.

A cursed item found in the Underdark led to his eventual demise: a Ring of Contrariness. Because of the special properties of the ring, Lexall spent a good few months making the rest of his party, especially our uptight, mission-focused Ranger leader, totally crazy. In one huge battle with Drow forces, Lexall actually fled, abandoning his group, which led to a huge fight at the gaming table. Since none of the other players, much less their characters, knew my curse (and the magic forbade me from telling them), it was a tense couple of months. Finally, Lexall's acting-out led to his capture by Drow security forces, and his eventual torture and death at their hands.

I played several other D&D characters who were Lexall's brothers and sisters (and lots and lots who were not), but never had quite so much role-playing fun as I had with my first, before and even after his cursed ring. I think that extra story flavor from my excellent first DM, Jason, is what made me love gaming so much, and is what led me eventually to take a seat behind the DM screen, and stay there for most of the rest of my time as a gamer.

- David Nett
creator, GOLD (the web series that does double damage)