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The Daily Grind: Should gender and race matter in MMO character creation?

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Camelot Unchained, Mark Jacobs' upcoming RvR-based MMO, is dipping into the old-school well in more ways than one. One design feature that caught my eye is the promise that racial and gender choices will influence character stats. MMO players are pretty used to the ancient RPG idea that some races or species are going to be better at magic or archery or punching people in the face or pressing Will of the Forsaken than others, but non-cosmetic gender differences are something that very few MMOs embrace. Even accidental gender imbalances send players into a tizzy.

The implication in CU is that these initial starting stats will be changeable based on what characters actually do, such that an Elf woman who does nothing but swing hammers will bulk up or Viking thug who practices his poetry will see that reflected in his charisma skill (I am making these examples up). But the idea that my character might start at a stereotypical disadvantage still bugs me and makes me wonder how many min-maxers out there will just play to those stereotypes because they feel they must, thereby homogenizing the character makeup of the whole game.

What about you guys? Do you think that gender and race/species should matter in MMO character creation as it matters in certain other RPGs?

Every morning, the Massively bloggers probe the minds of their readers with deep, thought-provoking questions about that most serious of topics: massively online gaming. We crave your opinions, so grab your caffeinated beverage of choice and chime in on today's Daily Grind!

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