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Character Emotions, Player Expressions

Every character has some kind of emotions. They laugh, they cry, they definitely get angry at evil dragons who eat their friends. The question is, do you show these emotions as a player? In the gaming circles I’ve run in, there’s one moment that is passed along in hushed, reverent tones.

A fellow player wanted to play a new character, so he needed his old character to die. As a result, the DM had me put on a cursed item that forced my character to kill his own brother (the other player’s character). After the deed was done, the cursed item was removed and I saw what I had done. In game, as well as around the table, I collapsed on my knees and cried. Then, in a combination of tears and anger, swore to avenge my brother’s death!

Now, it sounds like I’m tooting my own horn here, and to some extent I am. However, the reason it is spoken of in this way was so few players really express their character’s emotions. One doesn’t need to be capable of winning an Oscar to let their emotions fly in game. As the GM (since this works for any system) is describing the scene, think about the necessary emotion. Is it fear, anger, sympathy, what do you need to do. Now, once that is decided, recall those feelings from your life experience. You have all the necessary tools, even if you don’t believe it.

Say, for example, you’re a really happy guy who’s never been angry at a single person you know. How can you recall anger then? Well, there’s definitely been some time when you were angry at something. If not something massive like 9/11, then perhaps when your dog pooped on the carpet. Most everyone experiences every emotion at some point, so why not use that to add some splash to your next game? Try it. You might be surprised by what your fellow gamers think!


July 28, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized | ,

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