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Before I started writing up the archetypes that have made up a 10-part series (with two meta columns including this one), I only wrote out a very brief preamble in front of the Soldier column. As I said at the time, the goal was to provide character templates that work, in a broad sense -- charac...

April 15th 2011 at 5:00pm 0 Comments
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I was originally going to wrap up the initial little series of archetypes this week, but I decided to hold off for a week for a couple of reasons: first, because I don't want to just be rehashing what I said two weeks back when discussing how the series actually worked; and second, because there...

April 8th 2011 at 6:00pm 0 Comments
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There are a lot of reasons a character would head off on the road to adventure. Sometimes it's out of a sense of duty, to a nation or to morality or even just duty itself. Other times it's a quest for knowledge, or acceptance, or cold hard cash. You might not want to be there, you might be seekin...

March 25th 2011 at 4:30pm 0 Comments
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If you were born around the same time that I was, then the odds are good you have the plucky princess seared into your brain by means both dark and Disneyean. You know the one I'm talking about: the girl possessed of a fair bit of good sense and independent thought who doesn't want to be a stay-i...

March 11th 2011 at 11:00am 0 Comments
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Up until now, all of the archetypes we've discussed have had one major element in common -- they've wanted to be out in the world. Maybe it's out of a sense of duty, maybe it's a desire for something, or maybe it's just a need to teach. Whatever the actual reasons, these archetypes are made up of...

February 25th 2011 at 12:00pm 0 Comments
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I keep expecting to run out of ideas for the various archetypes that I've been discussing, but more of them keep coming to me. The past six columns have all highlighted characters who are distinct from one another yet at the same time make compelling centers to their own stories. For roleplaying pu...

February 11th 2011 at 1:00pm 0 Comments
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If you've seen The Princess Bride but haven't ever read the book, you have excellent taste in movies but you're missing out. There's a lot that by necessity had to be cut from the film, but the lost detail that stands out is just how much time Inigo Montoya spent training and preparing to hunt down...

January 28th 2011 at 9:00am 0 Comments
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One of the main draws of Champions Online is character customization. Costume creation is one part of that, while open power selection is another. The two elements allow players to make heroes that truly feel unique. No two Champions look the same, and while it's very possible for two different her...

January 13th 2011 at 1:30pm 0 Comments
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Clarity of purpose is a wonderful thing, made all the more likable by its usual absence. The fact is that most of us have only the vaguest idea of what to do, and we're all making things up as we go. It's the central ripoff discovered when you become an adult. Moral clarity is a joke, and whether y...

January 7th 2011 at 12:00pm 0 Comments
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It's the start of a new year, and that means it's time to start getting fired up again. I have been taking a little break from being online for the new year weekend -- after all, when you're always online, it starts to wear on you just a little. But now it's time to get back in the saddle in City o...

January 5th 2011 at 6:00pm 0 Comments
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Archetypes, by their very definition, are idealizations. They aren't people; they're abstract concepts that people approach in varying degrees. Most of them aren't conscious aspirations, just a direction and a set of overall goals. Nobody really wants to be amoral in pursuit of a single goal, or an...

December 24th 2010 at 2:00pm 0 Comments