Specifically relating to the process of depicting a character in an RPG. Do not use as a general marker for any question.

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20
votes
8answers
1k views

Would the alignment of a character with multiple personality disorder change? [closed]

A character has a certain alignment that in general defines how he acts. With multiple personality disorder or other similar disorders (maybe bipolar disorder with severe depression/severe mania), ...
20
votes
4answers
1k views

How to become better at descriptions of what your character is doing?

A (very) common GM question is "What is your character doing?" How do you, as a player, describe effectively what you character is doing? What techniques do you use to evoke wonder and spark ...
20
votes
4answers
479 views

How to run an encounter where PCs have different observations of the same events?

Some of the discussion in this question got me to thinking about an encounter design that sounded fun but I couldn't figure out an elegant way to pull it off: In some situation where one or more PCs ...
19
votes
12answers
3k views

What to model the behavior of D&D's chaotic evil Orcs on?

Instinctively, I find myself modeling a tribe of Dungeons & Dragons Orcs as similar to Klingons from Star Trek, or Vikings, or even a gang of bikers or skinheads. But none of these models truly ...
19
votes
8answers
3k views

How can my character coerce uncooperative player characters?

Occasionally in games we find ourselves in a situation where the player characters might not want to co-operate even if their players do. How do you handle the party coercing those characters into ...
19
votes
6answers
1k views

How do I explain the concept of “staying in character” to a newly starting player?

I've always had difficulty trying to explain the concept of "staying in character" to newly starting players. Typically, what we end up doing is just start playing the game. Sooner or later (often ...
19
votes
1answer
523 views

How to play a character that has an alien mindset and thought process?

I have a character that I am currently portraying who is not human, and I would like to increase the obviousness of his non-humanity ( mainly through dialog and actions ). The character is a ...
18
votes
7answers
3k views

How to roleplay languages that none of the player characters know?

Imagine a Dwarf meets an Elf. Both speak common, but the Elf doesn't speak Dwarven and the Dwarf doesn't speak Elvish. The Elf is in a bad mood and decides to speak to the Dwarf only in Elvish instead ...
18
votes
8answers
957 views

How can I motivate my fellow players?

Although I'm very much enjoying the one of the games I'm in, the other players seem to be flagging and losing interest. This is a bit disheartening as their lack of enthusiasm is bringing down the ...
18
votes
10answers
666 views

How to handle knowing more than your character does

I've read the rules. I know the math. I know, as the player, that X monster is vulnerable to Y damage and if I move through the door 4 squares into the room, my burst 2 will catch every baddie there. ...
18
votes
7answers
3k views

How can I encourage my D&D Encounters group to do more role playing?

I'm a new player to D&D 4e. I've been participating in D&D Encounters since Season 1 and have even run a couple of sessions in Season 3 when the regular DM couldn't attend. I don't play in ...
18
votes
5answers
3k views

How do I let players know that not every encounter has to be hack and slash? [duplicate]

My players kind of have a habit of, "If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, WE MUST KILL IT!" Recently they came across a small goblin camp and one of them (who speaks goblin) verbally ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

Please stop giving the town sheriff a noogie!

Related to this question but more closely related to this question. How can I get my PCs to not cause a single or small handful of characters to become the butt of a joke when that humor could easily ...
17
votes
7answers
2k views

Playing a loyal character without it being boring

I've been playing a character in a long running campaign (2+ years) that consists of a relatively large number of players (approx. 6 regulars and another 2-3 semi-regulars). Due to the number of ...
17
votes
8answers
1k views

How to get players to care about their and each others characters and play them like they are actual people

This question made me think about a problem I have been having that was brought up last night during a session. This session was the first of a new campaign I was running, with the party meeting ...
17
votes
7answers
535 views

How do I roleplay getting used to violence?

So I just rolled up a character for a game (D&D 3.5 if it matters) and looked around table to see we had two ex-soldiers, a professional bodyguard, and a 'famous' adventurous. (A level 1 bard with ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

How to easily come up with improvised dialogue

I'm a new GM, working with a few friends in a sci-fi campaign that I wrote using GURPS 4e. I think its going well, but the glaring flaw I've noticed in my work is that I can't come up with good, ...
17
votes
8answers
1k views

How to introduce and encourage role playing in non-roleplayers?

I'm going to be hosting a game at the end of the month. Myself, I am a semi-experienced DM but I will be playing with those who know only the basic mechanics of the game or have never roleplayed ...
17
votes
3answers
742 views

How do I switch from combat-based play to roleplay-included play in D&D?

I have played a few RP games at this point, but the vast majority of the gaming i have done has been my solo (read: playing several char's at once but being the only player) campaigns Brian ...
17
votes
2answers
417 views

Differing expectations on fight or flight

Last night, I joined a D&D 3.5e campaign. The two other characters in the party were on their way to a grove, inhabited by friendly druids, when they discovered it had been converted to a quarry. ...
16
votes
20answers
1k views

Which RPGs primarily reward roleplaying your character?

In what games (either in-print or out-of-print) are the rewards for playing your character's role or depicting your character's behavior the primary means of character advancement, as opposed to ...
16
votes
11answers
724 views

How can I strategise IC with the other players when my PC is stupid?

I have a very strong preference for keeping discussions in-character and avoiding out-of-character table talk. The trouble is that my PC is not very smart (an Int 8, Wis 13 half-orc barbarian) but I'm ...
16
votes
4answers
2k views

What are some resources or tips on dragons as PCs?

Our DM is preparing a new D&D (3.5) campaign in which we all have to play as a (True) dragon. We're all going to play non-evil dragons (we're allowed to pick chromatic ones and change their ...
16
votes
3answers
6k views

How clever is a base Intelligence of 10 in D&D 4e?

I'm playing my first ever D&D character and he has an intelligence of 10. Several members of the party have higher intelligence (the mage, etc). Is my character supposed to be a bit stupid? Or is ...
15
votes
9answers
719 views

Does GMing diminish or detract from being a player in games? [closed]

I started playing RPGs last year with the Pathfinder Beginner Box. I have been GMing and writing a campaign, but have also encouraged members of the party that are interested to run a one-off Beginner ...
15
votes
6answers
1k views

Are there D&D rules for encouraging non-optimal activities?

That is, characters doing frivolous stuff like drinking too much ale at the tavern and getting drunk. Spending gold to see a minstrel show. Gambling and brawling. Patronizing the local house of ill ...
15
votes
7answers
2k views

Roleplaying an addiction

In some games (Shadowrun for example), you can take a negative quality to balance your character in the form of addiction. I was considering either a Moderate or Severe Addiction negative quality for ...
14
votes
7answers
2k views

How to voice an NPC?

As a GM should I put a different voice if, for instance, the NPC is an old sick man, or if it's a kid or even a member of the opposite sex? What advices can you give me to enrich NPC acting?
14
votes
8answers
814 views

How do I GM a character immeasurably more intelligent than myself?

In the near future I am likely to have to GM God. Part of the difficulty I perceive I am going to have in this is God is immeasurably smarter, wiser, more creative, etc than I am - not by a ...
14
votes
3answers
462 views

Techniques to improvise and run interesting social and mundane scenes

Last session (I GM Traveller, a hard science fiction rpg) I realized my lack of skills when I found myself willing to spend some minutes in playing a scene involved a 3 years old child causing trouble ...
14
votes
5answers
1k views

How should we thematically deal with failed skill checks?

Is there a specific ruling or generally-accepted-practice that determines how players should handle failed skill checks? Does it depend on the skill? Specifically, do PCs know when they failed a ...
13
votes
6answers
517 views

How should a neutral character focused on balance be presented?

In many RPGs (or at least the ones I've heard of) the alignment system tends to have two definitions of a true-neutral character. Generally, they are something to the effect of what follows. ...
13
votes
9answers
711 views

How do you make a new NPC likable?

The players in my campaign will soon rescue a woman who's been trapped in an awful dimension (think Jumanji, if that helps) for ten years, and bring her home. After 2 sessions, they'll realize that ...
13
votes
6answers
1k views

How to help a player to roleplay the character he created?

When we first met to create my players' characters, the first thing I asked was to create normal characters (e.g. no freaks/depression/obsession/psychologically disturbed, etc). Normal people with ...
13
votes
2answers
537 views

Are there any good guides on how to roleplay, regardless of system?

I noticed a few weeks ago that I don't know of any good guides (books, podcasts, whatever) on how to roleplay. I've searched around for a bit, and couldn't find anything worthwhile. I'm looking for ...
13
votes
3answers
561 views

Fleshing out a background and roleplaying it

I am a big fan of fleshed out, rich, interesting backgrounds, that give the feeling that the character is real. For that reason, I really like to give characters traits that everyday people have, ...
12
votes
8answers
2k views

What are some of the major challenges in playing an Evil Character? [closed]

What are some of the major challenges in playing an Evil Character (whether that's a formal alignment or not) in a co-operative party game, and likewise, what are some of the reasons many groups ...
12
votes
3answers
674 views

Role playing with powers, solely for the effect without damage

Certain abilities have very interesting effects, but are accompanied by damage. In combat, this is no problem. But say you want to use the ability outside of combat, for role-playing reasons. Can you ...
12
votes
6answers
604 views

What are the perils of having the players play themselves as characters?

I've never really managed to engage or have a good experience of a game where the GM has asked me to "play a version of myself". It feels a little self-conscious and wierd, to me at least. But Can ...
12
votes
4answers
854 views

How should one properly roleplay a Kender?

For my first campaign ever, we are playing 2E DragonLance. I, not content with my usual lot, chose to play a female kender handler. The first playsession went well, but reading up on kenders (from ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I role-play as a dragon?

I have an NPC in our game that is called a "drake," but in terms familiar to most of you, he would probably be considered to be a dragon. In our game, drakes are classified based on the plane that ...
12
votes
4answers
581 views

How do common townspeople identify and react to unusual creatures?

It is clear that most people in Golarion can identify an elf or a dwarf on sight, but what about more unusual creatures such as a drow or succubus? Do normal townspeople identify them on sight? If ...
12
votes
7answers
507 views

How to design an RP-balanced party?

How do you build a party so that they all have social roles? In some games, I often find that one character ends up dominating the social part of the campaign. In our groups, we usually end up with ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

What does Drow Speech sound like?

I am about to play a Drow Rogue-Fighter and I want to roleplay my character well, and this includes doing a voice. What is the proper voice for a [charismatic] Drow [Rogue-Fighter]? I was thinking ...
12
votes
6answers
465 views

Any advice for playing characters who are older (much older) than the player?

Several of the characters in our group are of long-lived races and have ages in the triple digits as a result. Presumably the game-mechanic effects of their ages are already factored into the rules ...
12
votes
3answers
823 views

An insomniac character, how could that work?

I searched the player's handbook a while ago for the sleep deprivation rules but I don't remember finding anything, even though I recall having been told about such rules. Apart from asking if any ...
12
votes
0answers
296 views

As a GM, how can I create and role-play diverse NPCs better? [duplicate]

I am new to GMing (and role-playing in general, for that matter) and I am having a somewhat difficult time making plausible and interesting NPCs. This is especially true with NPCs who are not "typical ...
11
votes
7answers
550 views

Best way to get players to think about their backgrounds within the game?

I'm a new DM playing with a group of 5 new players. (We're playing D&D 4e but more general answers are acceptable.) So far we have done 3 sessions, where we've mainly focussed on learning the ...
11
votes
5answers
940 views

How do I make players appreciate roleplaying fluff and their surroundings?

I've made a Roman Empire campaign that consists of a lot of writing I did myself. I love roman history and put tons of details into it, including assigning domains and portfolios to roman gods (the ...
11
votes
5answers
826 views

Roleplay alignment in combat

I am playing a highly combat focused story in Pathfinder. My character is a neutral evil summoner, he basically thinks that the real freedom is achieved by leaving all moral, and that the weak must ...