My MMO-character creation.

This one I feel is much simpler to explain. My point in character creation is to use it to tell a story as well as let players design their avatar.

Most character creation screens are static and utilitarian. You have one screen with your character standing, often on a pedestal, where you can rotate and tweak sliders to make the needed changes. Its barebones, and designed for pure efficiency. But it does nothing beyond that.

It’s easier to show my example. When you get to character creation, you first see a room where your character is sleeping, and you zoom into a view of your character obscured by blankets in bed. You see a choice, male/female? and choose male. The shape changes, and next your character wakes up.

He then walks over to a mirror, and you get the option to choose faces. After that, your character walks over to his closet, and you can get into basic clothing  (if it exists.)

This is very general, and won’t show my MMO if in the slim chance I can actually make it, because each MMO would shape character creation to show lore. In this example you could very well adapt it to say a Spy MMO, where the point of character creation is a prelude for him getting ready for a tutorial in a fancy dress dinner instance.

The point though is that you take something which is basic as character creation, and tie it into what comes after, as opposed to just a static screen focusing just on the act of creation. To me creation is always disjointed from the real game. When you think about it, why is there no real context for a character’s beginnings? You roll him, and go right to questing and the newbie experience, but the character existed before in the world, shouldn’t there be some hints of it?

I also understand difficulties with this, with impatient players wanting to get into the game, or how slow animation like this may be, however a slider enabling quick access to each stage of the character creation cutscene would work, as usually its only on recreation that speed is needed.  It also is more taxing in terms of resources, but since character creation is one of the first aspects of the game your player sees, shouldn’t it be more than just a single screen?

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2 Responses to My MMO-character creation.

  1. Tesh says:

    Hmm… while it sounds fascinating and atmospheric, how would you justify spending the resources on it? You’d almost want to have a way to tie it in very strongly to the rest of the game. I think it can work, but you’d want to get more out of that opening experience than just character creation. (Like some good storytelling, for instance. ;))

  2. Dblade says:

    Yeah that’s the plan, to try and make a unified experience. Character creation as part of the plot. I’m not sure it can work with all methods and settings.

    The resources I would think wouldn’t be too dramatic. You wouldn’t want to make it too long, because players don’t want to go through a 3 minute animation just to toggle between body size and face. I’d think of it as being kind of like a short mission cutscene.

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