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Players Using more than one character at once.


Messiah of the New Night
You've seen it before. You probably have done this before.

You have your one character, but then you decide you want to play another while your other one is still in use.

But that begs the question: how many is too many?

Me personally, my limit is 3, unless I am GM and expected to play a multitude of characters. If I play more than 3 at once, it slows my posts down and possibly gives too much for my fellow rp'ers to reliably keep up with.


The Piggie Lord
Hehehe, I think the most I've had at once is five, currently have four characters at once in a RP, generally I stick to two (sometimes three).

If it's a 1x1 I can end up with a lot of side characters (who may or may not all have a backstory and personality)... I like characters a lot x3.

Though for group RPs my multiple characters rarely know each other so that they're spread out enough for other RP-ers/characters to interact with (occasionally they will know each other, but then I still try to make sure they're interacting with others and not just themselves, I do my best to be careful with that).

But uhm... There is never too many characters :D (or maybe there is and I've lost my mind *shrugs*).


<3 Quillicious' Not So Pretend Girlfriend <3
I find around three to four is also my limit. I start mixing information between characters, and even RPs, if things get too hectic, so I try to keep it to a low number.
Up to however many you or the roleplay allows. It's really dependent on the person, the circumstance, and how the RP works.

Some people make multiple characters thinking that doing so will allow them to cut back on the content and level of detail for each character, which shouldn't be the case. If you can't give each of your characters the proper amount of depth and detail that you should, then you should either stick with one or cut back on the number of characters you play (based on the point at which your work quality begins to deteriorate). Basically, it's all dependent on the person and the reason. I personally find it difficult to keep up with more than two characters, but I know others who can easily make three or four without having to sacrifice quality.

Another thing to note is the kind of RP that it is and the number of players you expect. Obviously, in a setting where there's a static number of characters or where the cast is supposed to be small, only one or two characters should be allowed per roleplayer. In an RP where there's really no limit to the number of characters in the cast, it should be fine to allow three or four characters, but you should still keep in mind of the information that the players already have to know and the number of players in the RP. If your RP is very information heavy, you probably wouldn't want a huge cast. There's already so much a player has to remember, so you don't want to pressure them too much with a flood of characters that they have to remember and keep track of...


One Thousand Club
It depends on what you mean by multiple characters I guess? Like do you mean characters with full character sheets that are given like full backstories and story arcs - than I usually cap out at like two. Just because it's really hard for me to juggle more than two story-lines and still devote enough time to each one. But I only post like once a week so my roleplays move at a snail's pace compared to other peoples.

If you just mean like characters that might have basic over-views but are used more to flesh out the world or add an ensemble element ( like playing a team of some sort ) than I think four or five would probably be good. Much more than that and I start forgetting whose who.
I spit out characters like it's Mardi Gras

But usually I just handle one character as my "main", becoming the focus of most of my replies, and only use other characters as fillers and/or world-building.

The problem with my characters are their flatness. My characters aren't really designed for long-term development; they are already developed prior to the plot, and their existence is to support the plot instead of the plot developing them further. Therefore my multiple characters actually served to make a rich plot. Instead of a multi-dimensional characters, I bring forth multitude of low-dimensional characters which, when viewed as a whole, provide the whole believability of a character.

tl;dr: 1 character as the "main", but then also infinite amount of side characters for various other purpose and enriching the "main" character's disposition.


Alarmed and Strangerous
If we're talking full main characters rather than npcs or side characters than personally I think two should be the limit. Two stops you being locked in while you wait for replays and lets you see things from a different angle without getting into territory where you are overloaded.

I mean I know people who enjoy running three or even four or five characters and I get why that's appealing, I really like designing characters and coming up with new ones.

But I've yet to RP with anyone running three or more characters who couldn't have fleshed out one of their characters more if they chose to focus solely on one or two. Inevitably one of these characters will get less attention or it'll switch depending on where the action is or whichever one happens to be the most interesting at the time. I can't help but think of in terms of: If you have three characters and you're in a conversation or whatever then you're only giving them a third as much of your attention as they are giving you and if something happens with your other characters that grabs your attention then it can drop below that.

I get that that's a simplification and its totally possible for someone with more characters to just be putting in more effort overall but it's always going to be true that you'll get better results if you focus your efforts in one area rather than dividing your attention.


The Pun Tyrant
I´m unreliable to begin with. Between my hectic schedule and my promptness to procrastinate when I fail to find motivation (and by consequence, the ideas) to post, and my difficulty in handling stress I can often end up missing even on things I really want to get to. Furthermore my striving for both quality and size can get me to take a long time to do things anyway.

That said, my maximum amount of characters to date was, NPCs aside, near 20. I think playing several characters is somehting that becomes considerably easier and more well done, the more solid your grasp is of who the characters are and how they think. It also helps to keep continuity in check. Someone who usually would let go of continuity and consistency or set them at low priority will have a hard time juggling several characters, because they will become erratic or blend into one another and because you can´t give them good focus if your story is disjointed, making it so that a particular character is only really relevant to the scenes they are a part of.


New Member
My limit is three at most, however I prefer to stick with two if I can. I want to be able to give my all to each character I am playing and if I throw myself into to many at once, I cannot focus enough on those characters.


mostly inactive
I exclusively do 1x1s nowadays so I'm controlling multiple characters no matter what because I have no interest in a roleplay that only has two characters interacting with each other. In this case I'll play all sorts of characters and split the load with my partner so we're both controlling roughly half a scene at any given time. Of course not all of those characters are 'active' and many may only show up for a scene or two before fading into the background.

But back when I played in groups I preferred to focus on just one or two characters so I didn't become overwhelmed with too many potential interactions and things to keep track of.


Not Entirely Dead
In one of my long term RPs, counting my side-characters I had 53. But I only actively RPed 4-6 of them per post. It was a Wolf roleplay, so that had me playing as X-Character and her litter of pups who would eventually grow up and "disappear" and stuff like that. With the amount of Plot Points that developed from the first "Chapter" of the RP and separate side stories and stuff it was pretty manageable. I also played a lot of inconsequential characters that you meet for five minutes here or there on your quest. It was one of those RPs where it got so big and there was so much going on it was like multiple RPs in one :)
But on a day to day basis I like to stick to two or three really fleshed out characters, and can add side characters as needed. The creation process is honestly one of my favorite parts of Roleplay so it's second nature to me to build a character on demand with his or her own feelings and devices for however long is needed.


Monarch of My Imagination
In one RP (didn't start on this site, but it is in my PM RPs), if memory serves me right, I have played 2 mains, and 4 side characters (who I built short bios and personalities within the RP), then as time passes, kids happen and now I have 5 more side characters to manage (who I share with another person.)

Anyway, in regards to limit, I would prefer to only have 1 to manage because I sometimes don't have the energy to respond to many. However, if it is needed for the story, I can always add more, and I wouldn't mind much. It just really depends on one's free time and capability.


I Saw Seven Birds
I don't really have a concept of limit--characters will generally live in a world populated by others and interact with more people than just the immediate person in their sphere. I certainly don't require that other people pick up side-characters, but I generally will have a couple. Once I did a role-play where I basically manned nearly an entire airship to my partner's ONE character--at least, all the officers and a few regular workers, so about 1 to 10. I had fun, and it gave the character multiple people to talk to and interact with.

Coco Adel

The Abandoned Maiden
It honestly depends on the person and bhow things are going I always tell people they can have as many characters as they want as long as they can keep up with them and they don't use it as a way to try and cheat the system or gang up on people with their multitude of characters. Personally I can play up to probably 6 characters without an issue, but I usually stick to one or two.


A Real Human Bean
But that begs the question: how many is too many?
Two. It's fine if the plot needs another character, but things get way too convoluted when you play more than one character. It's not necessarry and rarely serves the story. You don't need siblings. Take the character traits you like from both and make them one.

And for god's sake: stop playing with yourself. Roleplaying a community experience. Constantly have your own charactera coming in and out uneccessarily bogs down the experience. A basic task in editing is to cut out the uneccessary parts so that you can empathize the important plot points and character traits. Make an interesting, likable character that can stand on it's own instead of shotgunning thtee ideas and hoping they stick.


Melody of the stars
For me there's never really 'too many' as I am quite good at making sure I peel their story as the plot advance. But keeping the main character's story that is connected to the plot more important but not too important as to cover the other character's hardships.

But for a more serious type of roleplay I tend to keep it at 4 or so.
It depends on the scope of the roleplay. For smaller ones that only take place in a city, I usually go with at most a small group of 3 or 4, but no more than that. I was also part of a huge multiversal RP where I had 12 character sheets submitted in total XD That one was a Hosted Project though, so that was easier to keep track of who was supposed to be doing what.


The Devil's Advocate
It's rare that I ever play as more than one character, including temporary/plot-device characters. I just find it exhausting to write about more than one character's arc.
I like big, sprawling fantasy epics like A Song of Ice and Fire, the Wheel of Time, the Stormlight Archives and other such series. These series tend to have lots of POV characters spread out over continents and a story that takes place everywhere. Because that's what I read, I find it hard to condense all of that into just one character who is only in one place at a time.

As such, whenever I GM, I actively encourage my players to make as many characters as they're comfortable doing.

Whenever I devise a new interesting location (and I always make my worlds big and throw in placeholder names so that I can expand upon then, so they're not just shoehorned in) I try to get one of my players to make a character there, like how George R. R. Martin introduced new POV characters when he thought of Dorne and the Iron Islands. If I move an existing character to a new location, but not all the NPCs in the old location, I'll try to have a PC there to continue experiencing that storyline as it continues to unfold.


*Willingly Participates in Self Sabotoge*
Ultimately depends on the size of the rp for me. I don't like my characters interacting with each other ever, it never comes out interesting. Plus I don't tend to like reading that as an outsider usually, with the exception being if it's an npc with just a few lines exchange. So generally I only make more than one in setting large enough that there's a 4 person barrier between my characters.

Even then I never exceed 2.5 (most of these rps that were large enough were school ones) for my main characters; I tend to not include Villains or Gming npcs in this. It's already enough for me to find time to post for 2 and balance school, and insanely large family that all wishes to take up a few days a week...

(Let's just ignore the 10-15 npcs I always plan up just to world/lore build their backstory; Got a whole gov planned up for a town in one rp that will likely never show up XD)

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