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What makes a compelling character?

Sarah Pine, @ilaniel
March 29, 2013
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I don't know how many of you frequent the official Story Forum. It can be an intimidating place. Beware, all ye who may mention the words "Lordaeron," "Sylvanas," or "Southshore;" and these days add "Sunreaver" and "Dalaran" to the list of ten-foot-pole topics. I still visit the Story Forum regularly and if you're a lore buff its often a good source for varied discussion and debate. The amount of detail folks are able to recite at a moment's notice never fails to impress me, and has more than once sent me scurrying to my personal Warcraft library to fact-check or reread something with an eye for a new interpretation.

Recently, Nethaera has paid a visit to the story forum, and she asks you all directly: What makes a compelling character? What makes a character strong or weak or interesting or boring? What makes a character your favorite? What are the things that draw you to a fictional personality, what are the things that repulse you? As for me personally, well, I'm pretty sure the WoW community is more than familiar with some of my favorites (shameless self promotion). The reasons why I find those characters compelling are varied, but mostly boil down to the situation of being between a rock and a hard place. I like stories where there aren't good answers, where every way you look, you lose. Maybe I'm a Debbie-downer, but if the path to victory is obvious, I am bored to tears. Don't give me that, I don't want to read it. Give me someone who has struggled and fought and who will never be sure if they did the right thing. Give me something, and someone, that will haunt me.

What makes a character compelling to you? What fuels your imagination? If you've ever wanted the chance to talk with a blue about your favorite WoW personalities and share your personal idea of what you'd like to see out of WoW's canon characters, now is your opportunity!






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