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Viewpoint What you cannot stand in characters?

kevintheradioguy

Salt
Supporter
Just curious. We have search threads, we have RPs in their own, pet peeves, but I'm curious: when it comes to creating a character and starting a game, what makes you look at the CS or any description, and think to yourself "Well. I'm not playing with that, bye!"?
 

Spoiled Bread

The Lord of the Uneaten
When you find a CS that looks decent at the first glance but if you read it carefully it doesn't tell anything about the character. Usually this kind of sheet is filled with general traits. Like, 'my character likes to have fun', but does he have fun by reading novel, playing soccer or gutting children? 'my character will get angry if you piss him of', sure of course, I don't need to plug a leek in his butthole to know about this kind of info.

I'm not that good with CS too so I understand that people might have a hard time writing the character's personality until they try writing with said character for several posts. Still doesn't negate the fact that I don't like this kind of description though, sometimes I even get triggered by my own CS because I still do this.
 

Asteria

valar morghulis
I will probably sound petty but, depending on the context, even names can make me question if I want to interact with a particular character. This is not the case in all roleplays -- this mostly happens to me when it comes to fandoms, historical fiction or certain settings that are deeply rooted in a certain culture. As an example, if we are doing a Game of Thrones roleplay and the character's name doesn't fit in with names like Daenerys, Cersei, and the sort, I might flinch a little. Same goes for historical fiction. If we are doing a roleplay set in England during the Middle Ages and the character's name is somewhat french-spanish-another combination without a particular reason, it might be a little bit of a turn off for me. Even if you like a certain name, you could find a variation that fits a certain setting.

Now, I actually think this is just a subjective thing (probably for some of my partners the names I chose may have seemed out of place as well) so I never actually mention it. This probably also relates to people who use those baby names sites (like little old me) instead of just creating their own names. But sometimes it definitely strikes a chord xD
 

Enkerzed

Dusty Wanderer
Supporter
Several things in no particular order.
  • When they don't fit the setting.
  • When they're clearly a cookie cutter character that the author didn't even bother tailoring for the roleplay.
  • None of the lore was taken into account for their background and such.
  • They have more skills, abilities, equipment and whatnot than is reasonably justifiable.
  • The name contains more than a single apostrophe.
  • I don't like the picture used to represent their appearance.
I know that last one shouldn't be that important, but I can't deny that it is a factor and if it actually makes me cringe to look at, it'd be one of those cases where nothing would have been better than something. Provided that a decent description makes up for it of course.
 

ashwynne

|aquatic authority | ✎ art: peritwinkle
Supporter
Oooh I love this thread idea!

Let's see...
- Cliches in a bottle. Pretty sure this one is true for everyone, but when a character is just a cliche collection of traits I want to run far away. It can be interesting to take tropes and then add something that puts a twist on it, but when they're just "cute, shy, and loved by everyone" with a generous heaping of "will bend over backwards for everyone unless you threaten the people they love and then they will kick your ass" I'm just... done.

- Overly dramatic/tragic backstories that don't fit the story. I love a good heaping of angst, but when you're writing some fluffy story and one character has this earth-shattering horror in their past it's a bit of a "no thanks" moment for me. ESPECIALLY if their personality/quirks don't reflect the psychological damage of that event.

- Overpowered characters. Self-explanatory.

- Characters that can never ever ever ever be wrong or face consequences for their actions. Like... no matter what they say, do, or think they are 1000% justified and your character is the one in the wrong here. Sorry, but no thanks. A character that stubbornly insists that everything they say/do is right can be interesting to play, but when the writer doesn't allow for consequences to happen to their character as a result of that mentality I have a major problem. Sorry, but that attitude just doesn't fly in reality. If you're an arrogant, prideful, jerk then you're going to face consequences of some kind. Whether it's being ostracized, losing business, offending someone important, or ruining a relationship... there's going to be something.
 

SP3CT3R

[REDACTED]
  • Characters in fandom RPs with powers/abilities that don't follow trends established by the setting.
  • Characters in fantasy sandboxes with tons of benefits provided by their race/species.
  • Monstrous characters having a human form for no apparent reason
  • Personalities based on powers
  • Characters losing control of their powers in ways that are clearly OOC displays of force and not directly harmful to the character themselves
  • Edgy tics
  • Characters that just... don't have any unflattering traits. Like, they have flaws, but they're only used in situations that make the character look good. They're the next generation of mary sues.
 

Adamfaraday

I am a bird
People who want a character with mental illness but don't care to research it. Especially if their diagnosis is the first thing in the description. Not to say I hate characters with mental illness. I have my share of characters who have disorders and maladaptive coping skills, but I feel it needs to be done well and written from a place of knowledge and compassion.
 

Idea

The Pun Tyrant The Gif Hydra
Helper
1.Self-Insert Characters
When it comes to troublesome characters, a distinct pattern that appears is that of priorities. The character being made the center of things, at the detriment of the story, roleplay, players and even other characters, when the character's IC well-being is prioritized over any form of cooperation for the roleplay, it can manifest in a vareity of issues with the characters, and the players like them. Often this is in turn created by something being overly associated with the character, and the self-insert is possibly one of the most blatant examples of this. Because the player downright identifies with the character they are playing, not in the sense of some resemblence but in conflating identities, things not going their character's way can feel like a personal attack, and thus the character being well-off can come, in good conscience, at the expense of the fun of other players, and at the expense of the story.

There are some identifiable quirks of self-inserts, though not all self-inserts have them. The first that comes to mind is how oddly specific they tend to be regarding certain personal information of the character, even when it doesn't necessarily make sense for a character of that sort. This will often be a particular style of music or a mental disorder. If you're lucky you get something mild and easier to understand like OCD, if not you'll get something that rivals supercalifragilisticexpialidocious in length and they expect you to be able to take a quizz on it to roleplay with them (not by any direct demand, but they do tend to be extra sensitive regarding you not knowing aspects about their specific condition). Unsurprisingly that taste in music or mental desorder tends to be their own.

The other common trait is being an overdesigned, overly complex mess. Self-inserts tend to come in three flavors those being "blank slates" which admitedly don't fall into this here, characters based on expressing one's inner image, or compilations of one's favorite things. The complexity of oneself, as well as the lack of "killing your darlings" in the last type, both cause people designing self-inserts to often just shove whatever they feel like into the character. One example of such a character which pretty much fits all these checkboxes and that comes to mind is of this part cyborg alien cat furry thing, with OCD and one other mental disorder, fan of some type of rock. music, and who had this extremely overdramatic backstory, barely any personality to speak of (or rather, they treated the disorder like the personality) and was appearantly some kind of chosen one?

These aren't the only reasons why I don't like such characters either. There's also matters like how self-insert players tend to be quite reliant on a shameless use of plot contrivances for the reasons mentioned in the first paragraph, and though I have met self-insert players who are a bit more cooperative, I have yet to meet one who genuinely managed to keep up with my roleplay needs in detail or length. This last part isn't necessarily an indicator of a bad roleplayer, but it is an indicator of a bad experience between me and said roleplayer.

That said, I do make a point of accepting self-inserts into my roleplays, provided they can do the bare minimum as other characters from my roleplays. The reason for this is because I would rather having players admit to playing self-inserts, than gaving players who go in trying to trick me, as that can never be a good foundation between players and GM.

2.Characters that "steal my thing"

These are not bad characters, necessarily. This is a more personal and petty reason to dislike a character, but it really is an issue for me. I'm not a very competitive person, yet one of my primary needs in a roleplay is having a place in the group. Not just being a replaceable token, but someone who has genuinely something unique to contribute that no one else in the group is providing even if it's niche. Joining a new group I can mostly adapt to the gaps, but once I'm already in there, and someone comes and makes a character that also has "my thing" (often someone who joined way after all the characters were finished and the roleplay already started) it becomes a major turn-off.

It's not that I'm incapable of providing something unique to the group, or contributing at all, without a specific gimmick, but when something already esablished like that gets taken from me, it just drains me of the will to keep going. Things I was previously looking forward to seem to crumble or become frutrating, suddenly a stage where I once stood alone now has to be shared and it feels like the hard work I put into keeping it shiny is going to get ruined by a new pair of shoes. It just gets to the back of my head.

It's super petty, I know, but it is how it is.

3.Messenger characters

A messenger character is a character made to convey or support a message, that embodying aspect of that message or being solely focused on it as a theme. Their support or inclusion in whatever message, group or ideology the character is centered around is THE defining characteristic of the character. These characters are walking propaganda, and their players are often ticking time bombs as well.

These characters are made AND roleplayed with extreme influence from whatever idea they are focused around, and because this message is the priority they tend to fall into the kinds of problems I talked about when I started on self-inserts, sacrificing the other factors of the roleplay and roleplay experience in favor of the well-being of this priority.

Still, rather than the character, the players tend to be the real issue when it comes to these. There's a reason why they made this type of character and it's going to shown. They range from being oddly proud of a personal belief or characteristic, to downright preaching about it. People who make messenger characters often seem to try to work whatever the topic they are interested in related to that message into most if not all conversations and whether it be IC or OOC actions they are extremely sensitive when it comes to the topic. Unless they are contained in a group that entirely agrees with them, there being some huge fight due to the disagreement is pretty much a matter of time, but when that time does come it could spell the end of the RP out of the awkwardness.

4.Jack of All Trades, Master of All

Typically in a group, when one thinks of roles there's two ways to go- either specialize in your own things, or dip a bit into everything, but still leave room for others to just be downright better than you if they are especialized in those things. These types, however, have managed to convince themselves that their character isn't worth sh*t unless they can cover all the bases on their own. If they are in a fight they have to be great offense (melee and ranged), defense, strategist, support and whatever other roles there may be. Outside of one they have to be smart and also good at diplomacy of some kind.

The issue here is self-evident. Because they refuse to be bad at things, there's nothing to exploit when going against them, and nothing to support or cover for when you're on their side. If they are on the scene they also tend to be competitive about matching or outdoing others in just about everything- in other words, your character's own skills and accomplished get overshadowed by this person who can't just a pick a thing nor let others have the space to have theirs.

5.Staller

I like mean characters that like to play pranks and tease. I like sassy characters that can lay a good joke in and go about their life intelligently. I like characters who show caution, who can be disruptive by their own flaws, I like to see plots taken in interesting directions.

I don't like it when someone signs up for a plot and then their character never actually seems up to the plot at all, and seems to only be able to insult whoever they are in or try to break the story (seemingly). This is what I call "the staller", a character type that may even have perfectly valid reasons for not wanting to do things, or who may be putting more sound logic forth than other characters- but whether they do this or not, their character is constantly uncaring or passive or anything of the sort, and they never seem to go along with the plot, even the premise they signed up for in the first place. It makes one question whether they wanted to be part of the RP to begin with.

Narrative needs and artistic license are a thing, as is character design. There's no excuse to shove in a character that you can't make work with the plot.

6."Friends With the GM" characters

Characters which evidently only passed because the GM was too lenient, be it because they just let basically anything pass, because they were distracted or because they are friends with that person and thus gave them a level of trust which they wouldn't give anyone else (and which is probably misplaced).

7.Fandom-cannon characters

I don't roleplay with cannon characters, be it me or another who is using them. If an RP has them, I'm out of there.


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I'll edit the post if I think of any others.
 

Tove

Speak Your Truth.
The character, whether in a one on one or group setting, that exists among other get along well characters to be the strongest just by default. They make sure to always have inner thoughts trashing the other characters, be it that they are weak or cowards or aggressively voice this out loud. Authority means nothing to these type of characters as they are quick to challenge it by once again voicing how strong they are and how stupid everyone else is.
 

JadeGreen17

Chimeric Spirit
If they have a section a mile long for their abilities/powers and a three word description of personality.
The guys who don't actually list all their character's powers in their cs, just whips them out in-game without warning and then tries to argue about why that works.
I'd like to place these in "Lawful Evil" and "Chaotic Evil" respectively, of a DND alignment chart.
 

BackSet

"Stop Winning!" "Make me!"
People with powers that are overpowered but by the time I've accepted them (I really need to stop approving character sheets at 9:00 PM) it's too late.
I don't roleplay with cannon characters, be it me or another who is using them. If an RP has them, I'm out of there.
I couldn't think of a character who was a cannon to make a joke with (it's spelled Canon.)
 

FoolsErin

Gee, it's swell to finally meet her OTHER FRIENDS!
When the skills and the backstory don’t match up. You can’t slide a completely ordinary life past me if you’re an expert marksman who is so precise with a katana they could shave themselves with one without injury, plus capable of making sushi equivalent to that of a multiple decade professional chef. Like, what?
 

Sera

Level 1 Chaotic Smug Rogue
If their main trait is being a "sociopath". (Used with inverted commas because ninety nine percent of the time, they have put no real research into sociopathy and just wanted their character to be able to kill with impunity.)
How does having sociopathy give you impunity? Laws apply to them just like everyone else.
 

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