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Demographics 16: How much power do you prefer your

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Brovo, Aug 14, 2016.


How much power do you prefer your characters to have from the beginning?

  1. Weaker than the everyday peasant/civilian.

  2. On par to the average peasant/civilian.

  3. More competent than a peasant/civilian, but less competent than a soldier/footman. (Ex: Militia.)

  4. On par to a soldier/footman.

  5. More competent than a soldier/footman, but less competent than a veteran/specialist. (Ex: Squire.)

  6. On par to a veteran/specialist.

  7. More competent than a veteran/specialist, but less competent than a master. (Ex: Black belt.)

  8. On par to a master.

  9. More competent than a master, but less competent than the chosen one. (Ex: Ace pilot /w the force.)

  10. On par to the chosen one--I should be destined to solve all the world's problems.

  11. Beyond the chosen one--There should be no limits as to how strong my characters can be!

Multiple votes are allowed.
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  1. @Staff: Keep in mind that (with Diana's permission and Astaroth overlooking it) I'm posting threads in GC first, leaving them there for a week, and then moving them to RP Help & Discussion after! This way, my demographics threads can have the widest breadth of community input without asking for unfair administration favouratism. Thanks. :ferret:

    Credit goes to @Pahn for creating the banner.

    Demographics threads are, essentially, an attempt to record the community's thoughts and feelings on RP-related subject matter via a series of votes. Iwaku's tastes, habits, et cetera. If you want further information on prior demographics threads, you can find the demographics hub thread here.

    Demo threads are not an appropriate place for hardcore multipage debates. You can ask questions about each other's positions, but keep them professional in tone. Otherwise, the spirit of the demographics threads will be lost. They're meant to sample the community and put it into an easily digestible form of numbers that anybody can look at later when creating their own RP threads or when curious about Iwaku's general demographics. If you're really interested in discussing the subject matter, create your own discussion thread. I would be delighted if demographics threads started to spawn further topics of interest by the community itself.

    Topic: Character Design.
    Question: How much power do you prefer your characters to have from the beginning?
    Clarity: Essentially, in comparison to the world around them, how powerful do you prefer your characters to be from the beginning of the story? You may choose up to three options to avoid forcing a specific choice on a poll talking about general levels of power.

    Additional Questions
    • Q. What is the weakest character you've played?
    • Q. What is the strongest character you've played?
    • Q. How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a role play?
    • Q. Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours?
    Poll Thread Results.
    1. Character Design. (In Progress.)
    2. World Building.
    3. Plots/Premises.
    4. Group Dynamics/Relationships (Outside of Romance) (Tiebreaker!)
    5. Tone/Good vs Evil (Tiebreaker!)
    #1 Brovo, Aug 14, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2016
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Answer to primary question: To be honest, it depends greatly upon the premise and setting of the RP itself. If the RP is about people who are gaining power for the first time, then I like my character to start out pretty average. So that they can grow, and develop their powers, and explore them.

    However, if the game is about elite soldiers doing something...then the characters should start out as elite soldiers, and the game would inherently be less about their power progression.

    In other RPs, like say, something apocalyptic? I like to play someone who is skilled, who has useful abilities, but is not military, police, etc. Frequently I run with someone who is from a trade, and knows how to use firearms. Simple, every-man type of character, who is a little better prepared for the situation than, say....the average city dwelling, fat, lazy accountant. But is not some "hardened criminal" or "battle tested veteran" who isn't going to have much of a conflict of conscience to play out, over some of the hard choices that need to be made. I also refuse to play the idiot waif, that doesn't know shit, can't do shit, and is basically just a hindrance.

    Additional Questions:
    Weakest character: In comparison to the game setting? Probably my character who could simply see all forms of EM radiation, in a game where people were capable of throwing explosive beams, have nigh invulnerability, etc.
    Strongest character: Back in like, 1999 I had a character in Yahoo Chat RP who was....ridiculous, as I just didn't know any better. Started out as an old guy, with embarrassingly, "a pair of semi automatic, double barreled, 10 gauge shotguns." He also had this ability to generate energy, that he used primarily for making little energy constructs...until he met Goku_Clone_1094205 (essentially). Then other shit happened, he survived nuclear blasts, etc. IE: I was an idiot, and made a ridiculous OP character. Strangely though, not "God tier" like many people had back then. Still, stupid and ridiculous.
    How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a role play? I read the premise, and try to get a feel for the "power level" of the game, as the person who creates the game, intends. Usually I end up on the low end of the spectrum. I think you already know this Brov.
    Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours? Stronger, almost always. There will sometimes be people who make characters on par, or rarely weaker than mine, but probably 75-80% of the characters that join games I am in? Are stronger.
  3. I usually prefer to make my characters rather average or below par. I'm not too great coming up with super special awesome powers and abilities as is, and I don't like my characters knowing things or being able to do things when I don't even have an inkling of knowledge about them.

    Essentially, I like to have them climb up the ranks for the most part. I find it makes for a much more fun and memorable experience.
    My weakest character had to my fairy Chi. She's tiny. She has butterfly wings. She was almost eaten by a spider and nearly died due to a raptor. Rain is bad for her. Even her sunny personality can't save her most of the time. There wasn't much ways for her to grow either, and I kept it like that.
    My strongest character I've ever played is funnily enough not even the strongest I have, she's just the most blatant about using her powers. This would be a dragon I created named Mizuko. As the daughter of Ryujin, she basically commands water and she's not shy of using it. Interestingly enough, the more I played her, the more I realized there was a whole lot more she can do with just water bending than she was.
    My character's strength is not normally something I'm thinking about, to be honest. Like I mentioned above, I like characters to grow as they are rp'd. It's also very rare that I will even join an rp where the premise is where characters have to be strong or have a certain amount of intelligence or use weaponry I'm not familiar with.
    Most people tend to have stronger characters than mine, sometimes on par, but 9/10 times my character will be the weaker one.
  4. I chose the range of more competent than a peasant, equal to a soldier, and more competent than a soldier. I like to start sort of low on the spectrum of power to have plenty of room for growth as the roleplay goes on.

    I once played a character that was a very old woman whose only really notable skills were literacy (in semi-realistic medieval levels of education) and knowledge of local plants and their medicinal properties. An average ten-year-old kid with a stick would have been able to beat her down without much struggle. She was significantly weaker than the average peasant. :P

    That would have to be my first ever forum roleplay character, who was named Jorick because in that roleplay using a character name based on your forum name was the norm. It was a weird not-really-self-insert thing that I thought was normal then but realize now it was really strange. Anyway, dude started off with a sword that disintegrated anything it cut and with fighting skills equal to or maybe greater than a master. That roleplay was worse than anime for powerlevel juggling nonsense, btw. Things only got more insane when my character discovered a shard of a dark god's power and gained omnipotent control over everything within 10 feet of him (because I was making SOME overtures toward balance). One time he disintegrated himself and his gear and traveled as individual atoms a long way away before reconstituting himself. And then things got even MORE overpowered when he actually met that dark god and was granted a greater measure of his power, thus extending his sphere of omnipotence to a mile or something. It was disgusting.

    I look at the scale of the struggle presented and the premise for where the player characters come from and try to come up with something logical. People all from some small village are unlikely to be great warriors, whereas mercenaries or adventurers going after a bounty would likely be experienced and skilled. Something like a normal war or a party infiltrating an enemy nation would call for something around average soldier skill, whereas an epic quest to slay the evil dragon destined to devour the world whole on the next winter solstice calls for epic heroes. It's all about being flexible and realistic to the circumstances.

    Generally probably on par, due to my method of power balancing. However, when there are wide ranges of logical power levels that can fit the roleplay, I do tend to go toward the high end, and in those cases I guess other player characters average out to being weaker than mine.
  5. How much power do you like your characters to have from the beginning?

    Usually, I don't like my characters to be that powerful at all in terms of other high-ranked figures in the roleplay. Enough power to make them justifiable beyond a liability, sure, but still not that much save for a few skills that put them a cut above your average civilian. The reason for this is mainly because I like to see characters grow, and making them start out relatively weak gives them a good clear path to character development and growing as a person overall.

    Well, unless they die, of course. At that point I feel a bit bad for them, like throwing a child who can't swim into the deep end and thinking: 'hmm, maybe I should've spent a few extra quid on swimming lessons.' But still, it's worth the risk for RP science.

    Making a character too powerful just isn't fun to me. When my character 'wins' an encounter, or gets through a tough event, I want them to feel senses of accomplishment or relief that slowly shape the character into a veteran as encounters go by. I want them/myself to feel like they've earnt that title, rather than being plopped into the world like 'you are da master l33t swordsmang!!! kill em all without evn lookn at em'. This isn't to say high-powered characters are bad; they're good when played and introduced into the RP correctly, but still. Just a personal preference.

    In general, weaker characters are a lot more flexible, and making them a low power leads to all sorts of roads they could go down later in the RP.

    What is the weakest character you've ever played?

    I recall a fellow by the name of 'Rolf', who was basically a late-teen thrown into an apocalyptic world armed with little but a fencing mask and a wooden spear, which is a generous term for 'sharpened stick'. Christ, the poor sod got beat up a ton, but each step of the way I felt like I was going somewhere with that character. He died of a leg injury in the end, but he kept going for quite a while, and he accomplished things others certainly wouldn't have expected from some guy who was probably paying off his student loans not too long ago.

    I'm guessing GM'ed characters (NPC's) don't count, because I've played a blind dude who knows a lot but can't do fuck-all when it comes to combat, so you could probably poke him to death if you sharpened your fingernail enough.

    What is the strongest character you've ever played?

    Hm. I can't recall making anyone who was exceptionally powerful, though the strongest would probably have to be a man forever trapped inside a suit of armour, with extremely low intelligence due to injuries, but he was a hell of a tough nut to crack, with exceptional strength and speed to match his magically-operated body within the metal shell. Archie, his name was. He sort of reminded me of Lennie from Of Mice and Men when I played him; shame the RP sort of just... closed. Might have to try him again at some point.

    How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a roleplay?

    Mostly whatever the GM expects, and I adapt to match the level as other players, as pretty much anybody should do in my opinion. Usually (but certainly not always) this sort of power level is a wandering adventurer with enough useful skills to be taken into some sort of a group, so I usually go with that. Regardless of how powerful I made them, I usually give my character big-ass flaws to go with them. Not usually as crippling as being blind or something, but not a silly 'weakness' like 'hates losing', 'easily pissed off', or 'scared of death'. Yeesh.

    Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours?

    I'd say some of the majority would go for stronger characters than mine overall, though I'm certainly not the only one who likes toning down their characters a bit beyond the recommended line. I'd say mostly other people are on par with me.

    To conclude, though, I'd say that the personality and goals of a character is much more interesting than the power level. Whilst the power level can be good to show off in fights and such, it's the dialogue, actions, and decisions of a character I take a lot more interest in rather than how hard they can swing their sword. A good question overall; thanks for bringing it up!
  6. Sooo this question was a hard one for me, given the fact that I often play in roleplays where the power levels are all over the place. @_@ That being said, I chose "more competent than a peasant/civilian, but more competent than a soldier/footman", "more competent than a soldier/footman, but less competent than a veteran/specialist", and "more competent than a veteran/specialist, but less competent than a master". I feel like this is a pretty good indication of the range that I normally fall into. Also, the power levels that I give my characters really heavily depend on the nature of the RP itself. In Fandomstuck, each character's power level will of course depend on whatever source material that they're based on, and, overall, there's going to be a very wide range of abilities. Altera Arcana, meanwhile, is much closer to a traditional fantasy, so it's a lot easier to give characters power levels based on what would make sense for that universe, thus preventing the power levels from being nearly as all-over-the-place as Fandomstuck.

    That being said, most of the RP's I've been in are closer to Fandomstuck than Altera Arcana, in this regard. O_O" My poll answers are just based off of the fact that I usually don't start off my characters as being weak enough to be considered "normal" or "average", but I also usually don't allow my characters to start off super-strong, either.

    Other than that, though, I usually don't think very much about my characters' power levels, especially in RP's like Fandomstuck, where it's hard to even say what the "average" power level should be to begin with.

    Ehhhh. I feel like just about every character I've played who's an ordinary human with no special powers would tie for this spot. @_@

    The biggest one that's coming to mind right now is Jesse Sky, who was pretty much a joke character -- the joke being that she was completely oblivious to everything around her and would misinterpret even the most insane off-the-walls bullshit as relatively ordinary things. (For example, she could see a giant monster run past her and all she'd say would be, "oh, whoever owns that dog should really keep it on a leash!") Point is: the RP that she was in was full of really ridiculous and overpowered creatures, making Jesse -- an ordinary human with no powers or noteworthy abilities -- extremely weak by comparison.

    That being said, in terms of power levels, I feel like every non-magical human character that I've ever played is about on-par with Jesse -- just because I almost never play in RP's where non-magical humans are the norm. Nearly every RP I can think of that I've participated in recently all had characters who were supposed to be magical or otherwise super-human in some way, so... yeah, being an ordinary human is about as low as you can get on the power scale, in that regard.

    I have played literal gods. @_@ Even not counting GMPC's -- even not counting any RP that I was the GM of as opposed to an ordinary player -- I've still played characters who were gods, and other practically omnipotent beings that could bend reality to their whim and do whatever they wanted.

    I mean, it's not like most of my characters start off that strong... but if you want to know what's at the furthest ends of the spectrum, well, this is it. XD

    That depends. If the RP is something off-the-walls like Fandomstuck (or like Tenshi Jigoku, or like my upcoming RP, Omnibus Academy (which is heavily inspired by Tenshi Jigoku)), then... really, I don't put much thought into character strength at all. In Fandomstuck in particular, I do try to stop myself from making any of my characters too ridiculously omnipotent, or giving them too long a list of powers and abilities. But, I've played in other RP's like it that really allow you to be as overpowered as you want, so... Really, if there's a limit to how strong a character should be (unspoken or otherwise), I'll try to stay within it. Beyond that? I really don't give myself any guidelines for character strength. I focus more on the concept for the character/creature I want to create, and what powers it would be fitting for them to have, and I work from there.

    In something like Altera Arcana, I do focus a lot more on making characters that are balanced alongside everyone else, and that fit the world they're in. But... I still feel like it's hard to put into words exactly how I determined how strong they should be. I just sort of... gave them some abilities that would be good to start with but not spectacular, made sure they didn't stand out as being stronger than the other characters, and, uh... that's it, really. o_o

    For RP's like Fandomstuck/TJA/Omnibus: It's really all over the place. Some people will have characters weaker than mine, some stronger, and some on-par. There's really no pattern to it, especially given how all-over-the-place my own set of characters tend to be in these kinds of RP's.

    For RP's like Altera: Ehhh. That's sort of a tricky question since, well, I GM basically all of my RP's these days, and it's been a very long time since I've done an RP that was anything like Altera in general, so... I guess I'd say on-par, but that's only because I, as the GM, am determining what range of power levels everyone should be in the first place, and then placing my own characters in that range in order to prevent my own characters from becoming the stars of the show (as well as allowing them to serve as an example for the other RPers).
  7. I'm gonna be honest, I love playing super powerful characters. Because I'm not looking for them to get stronger, I'm looking for them to interact with others. Those that have reached godhood need to keep in touch with the common man or even the strong people of the world.
    • Q. What is the weakest character you've played?
      • A. A human with the ability to quickly calculate angles for which to shoot. She's a detective. I only got to play her for a short time.
    • Q. What is the strongest character you've played?
      • A. Literal gods. Not here, I try to keep them a bit away from godhood status. That's not to say they don't have downfalls though, usually the ones that reach godhood have some major psychological weaknesses (scarring events that can be used against them for example: arachnophobia.) or a weak point (like zelda or some shit XD except without the glowing)
    • Q. How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a role play?
      • A. The other person's character. I do 1x1's mostly so I like characters that are equal in strength.
    • Q. Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours?
      • Always done on par. because while I prefer playing over the top kinda characters I match my partner.
    • Q. What is the weakest character you've played?
      • Probably kid-characters; youth, usually 13 or under, inexperienced and sheltered types. I once played a character in a chaRP named Robyn who was maybe 5 or 6 and was basically a useless poop. But she was cute. On Iwaku... Lauren Wright, a character of the kid-sister archetype in a TLOU roleplay. And as far as how weak she was, I suppose it's best said that she was pretty averse to combat, didn't have a whole lot of skill in anything besides.
    • Q. What is the strongest character you've played?
      • Outside of Iwaku, in a chaRP a long time ago, I played a few literal god characters, but all of them were very 'rising-to-godhood'. And even as gods, they weren't all powerful, all knowing. Unless it's a 1x1, I'm mostly against playing that type of character. ON Iwaku, I've also got a godly character or two, able to create things at will. But the frequency at which I play characters like this is really small (like, four characters compared to the dozens on dozens I've written).
    • Q. How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a role play?
      • I'm the type to observe everybody else's CS before making my own. I like to base what I create off of others; I very much like to fit in while carving out my own unique little spot. So if everybody else is slightly-above-average, I'll do the same. If there's a few people who have specialist, niche characters, I won't mind making one.
    • Q. Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours?
      • Uhm... I suppose on par? Mostly because I try to match the people I'm playing with. It's usually a mixed dozen really.
  8. Question: How much power do you prefer your characters to have from the beginning?

    -Usually I play Badass Normals or mildly superpowered characters that Fight Like A Normal.

    Additional Questions
    • Q. What is the weakest character you've played?
    From Hushcobb, Dr. Annabelle Engel. She is a surgeon. In a team made up of ninjas, peerless marksmen, monsters, telepaths, and other superpowered folks.
    • Q. What is the strongest character you've played?
    From Ultiverse/Otherverse, the Skullman. Others have flashier and more damaging powers, but by the time he retired from field service, he was the superhero community's representative within the United Nations, trained virtually two entire generations of superheroes, and effectively knew every active superhero. with such connections, he could probably summon a superpowered army if he required one.
    • Q. How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a role play?
    I dont't. I submit a character and adjust them as the GM requires.
    • Q. Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours?
    Generally stronger. I still manage to always make my chars integral to the plot, though.
    • Q. What is the weakest character you've played?
    Like, a kid or a dog. So that's weaker than the average civilian.

    • Q. What is the strongest character you've played?
    If PC, a demon who could literally puppeteer people with their blood oh and also was mostly immortal. I'm pretty sure that counts as 'on par with the chosen one', though it's probably less about solving all the world's problems and more about causing them.

    As NPC... I'm partial to the guy who could summon an entire army on his fucking whims.

    • Q. How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a role play?
    What is the norm for PC's, what variance is there already in the cast (AKA we really need a slightly stronger mentor for the unruly cast, or maybe have a bunch of overpowered heroes who share a personality flaw and have a character be the opposite of that to round out the cast) and also what do I feel like today?

    • Q. Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours?
    On par, mostly. I tend to avoid wide variety in power level RP's in general. If there is a wide variance, I do tend to pick on the stronger side, though.
  9. Question: How much power do you prefer your characters to have from the beginning?
    I prefer playing characters that are pretty early in their "power" development. There's a sense of security there, because then I can micromanage how the character grows. It also buys me more time to do my research for whatever the character develops into so I'm not cramming tons of information about things like master level archery.

    Question: What is the weakest character you've played?
    I have a necromancer that mainly serves as a buff than anything else. He is young, frail, and can only raise like 3 people before passing out. Consistency of paper.

    Question: What is the strongest character you've played?
    A creation goddess.

    Question: How do you determine how strong your characters should be when joining a role play?
    I try to match around what the GM wants.

    Question: Do you think others around you generally play characters stronger than yours, weaker than yours, or on par to yours?
    On par, or I try to. I tend to make characters that feel more like side characters than main characters though.
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