Shaper & Maker

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Make your players love their character's flaws

What flaws do you think this character has?

In a recent discussion about roleplaying mechanics I heard an opinion mentioning that character flaws should be a disadvantage and therefore rewarding well for playing them isn't something that should be done. My way of looking at flaws is completely opposite. While flaws are in general supposed to be a tool of balancing (or in practice min-maxing) characters, they work best as a tool to bring atmosphere, good story and drama to a game. And for this purpose, they work best if players want their flaws to cause them problems.

Review: Beasts & Barbarians for Savage Worlds

An amazon warrior from Beasts & Barbarians

Brief review for the hasty: Beasts & Barbarians is a sword & sorcery setting that has a feel of familiarity - perhaps because many civilizations have been inspired by historical civilizations. Carefully spiced up with originality, combined with classic sword & sorcery elements and tied together with a believable history this setting make a very tasty stew.

Character creation: Flaws make the character

"My character is ready. What? Oh, I need to get some flaws to pay off all the extra stuff I've already picked. But my character is perfect... Now, what flaws would have least effect on my character?"

Sounds familiar? All too familiar to me. Most of my players want to think of all those munchkiny statistics and features first, and then, if the system has a mechanism for negative features (flaws, hindrances, disadvantages, whatever they are called), they try to find something that doesn't hinder their character. I confess, I'm guilty of that too.

Savage Worlds: Conflict -encouraging hindrances and rules

These hindrances and skill adaptations are meant for a game where pc vs. pc conflict is good, even desirable. Players should understand that they should play their characters with feel rather than optimal efficiency - and if they do should be rewarded with bennies. These flaws can get pc's in quite much trouble, so an additional benny use for creating small story twists works well with them.

Diorama: Winter fight

Completed diorama photo

Completed diorama photo

This small diorama -photo was made for a small maxminis -competition. Some terrain props I've made before were used in the diorama, and potato flour to make the ground look more authentic. Sky was taken from a photo and added to it using Gimp.

Below is the original photo, with original background:

Summoner

Summoning scene from above

A small diorama made from game props, just for fun. An evil wizards is summoning something he's too confident about being able to control...

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