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Character Creations: How to Make Your Own Character

by faeriestories


NEOBOARDS - If there's one thing I've noticed, Neopets players love to make characters, whether for RP purposes, short stories, comics and even for the Beauty Contest. The second thing I've noticed is that everyone's characters are almost the EXACT SAME! They all have similar personalities, similar looks and even the way they act towards others is virtually the same. With all the different sorts of pets in Neopia, and all the different sorts of people playing the game, I figure there should be some variety!

So whether you're sick of seeing the same type of character or need some help creating your own original character, this is the place for you, for I will go through each important point to creating your own memorable creature step-by-step.

Step 1: Picking a Species--

The first step to making a character is picking out a species. My suggestion is to pick one that you really like, that you won't mind spending time on creating and one that you'll have fun with. Fun is, after all, the most important part.Most people go after the popular pet, ones such as lupes, aishas and zafaras. But don't forget, the lesser known ones are just as fun to work with, maybe even more so, since their types haven't been done over so many times. So, consider also pets like the lennies, skeiths and tuskaninnies.

Another thing to consider is look. If you're planning on drawing them a lot, you might want to go with a species that you can draw better than the others. This isn't all too important though, if you're going to use your character for just RP and stories.

Step 2: Personality--

This is where you start to bring your character to life! Here you will decide the pets gender, how your pet will act, what they do, how they get along and respond to others, etc. Are they strong? Sassy? Or maybe a big whimp? The personality is what makes or breaks your character. If you don't have a strong, steady personality, you're character won't be believable. Once you create a personality, stick with it. If you keep changing it around, others who you might RP with or make stories with will most likely get confused. The only exception for a personality change might be if a really important event happens to your character, it might change them in some way. Even so, the change will be a small, slow, gradual change.Another important thing to remember is that nobody and nothing is perfect! No matter how good your character might be, they won't be believable if they don't have a flaw or three. Perhaps they're afraid of soup? Or maybe they smell really bad? Maybe they have an uncontrolable urge to steal your shoes and bury them? So, you could give your character a really serious fear of something, something that might hinder them in certain situations. They could have a physical disability, such as blindness or a broken limb. Making them vunerable to something is also a good choice, and might go along with a fear they might have.

The possibilities are endless when creating their personalities, from combining a bunch of qualities to using just a select few. But remember, a perfect character isn't very believable, so give them a fault!

Step 3: Background--

Having an idea of your characters background or past will also aid in creating a personality. Try to stay away from stereotypical ideas. Many, many characters out there have some sort of tragic past and they spend their life moping about. While there's nothing wrong with that, it's been done so many times it's not even fun anymore.

Think of where they might've grown up, how they spent their childhood or what their friends and family were like. Did they grow up in a nice family or were they abandonded? Did they get recruited for an adventure? Or ran away because they were mistreated? In real life, our surroundings influence how we act, and it should for your character too.

Step 4: Abilities--

Every character has something special about them, whether it be magic, a skill with some sort of weapon or maybe they're really good at something like ice skating or surfing. Whatever you choose, it should go along with their personality. A character who is afraid of water might not make the best surfer.

You may also want to include how they got that ability. Did they learn it? Or maybe they were born with it? Or perhaps they even stole it from someone else. Maybe it just took lots and lots of practice.

Step 5: The Look--

My personal favorite part is creating what the character will look like, from color to clothes to markings to accessories. The first thing you should do is decide if your character will be an anthro (human-like, walks on two legs, but has animal characteristics like fur, large ears, tails, etc...) or one that walks on all four legs, like a normal animal.

Once that is confirmed, you'll want to decide if they have any special markings, such as stripes, spots, or weird swirly things. You might even want to make a reference sketch of your character in different positions to plot out where all the markings go. A color study might be a good idea too, and should reflect your pets personality. If they are fun and outgoing, bright colors would emphasize that, but if they are shy, pale pastel colors might be best where as an evil character might look best in dark colors, such as purple or deep red. If you need more ideas of what specific marking are, you could take a look at some of my own pets, each of whom I try to give a unique look. There are also many wonderful artists that hang out in the Beauty Contest chat board. You could look at some entries you find there for great examples of unique markings.

Next would be deciding on their physical appearence such as body posture and structure (short, fat, muscular, etc...) and any clothes they might wear and accessories such as jewelery (earings, necklaces, etc...) or weapons. Again, sketches might help in deciding what looks good and what doesn't work as well. I like drawing my anthro characters with different outfits too, just for different designs, and so no one thinks that they wear the same clothes everyday. Boy, would that get stinky!

Hopefully this guide will get you started. By no means do you have to do it in order. You could start at the last one and work backwards, or jump right in the middle. Don't be afraid to go back and modify things either. If you come up with another idea, or think something else might work better, then go for it! You could also ask friends what they think. Getting another perspective and opinion might help you find even more to add! If no one is around to ask, you're more than welcome to neomail me, and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.

To give you all an idea of how to go about this, I'm going to create a personality and look for my faerie wocky, Kiaveth. While I have a small idea of what her character is about, this is a perfect way for me to work out the details. And please, as this is for my own character, I'd appreciate it if it stayed mine. ^_^

Step 1: Picking a Species--

Well, as I said, I'll be working with Kiaveth the faerie wocky. She is my main pet on my guild account, and the one whom I will be RPing with there, so some of the details will be aimed at guild events. If there are any questions, feel free to drop me a neomail.

Step 2: Personality--

To start, if it isn't obvious, Kiaveth is female and is therefore entitled to sudden mood swings, changes of mind and heart, and the ability to wrap anything around her cute little paw to get her way. She's also very much eccentric and hyperactive, as if she only ever eats sugar. Okay, so she does eat a lot of sugar...

For guild purposes, she's also a white mage, which in this case, not only heal but they can fight as well. But Kiaveth is best at healing potions. In fact, one could say that her potions are unsurpassed (Kauvara and Kayla excluded). The problem is, in order to get a potion from her, you actually have to go to her shop... Yup, there's always a catch. She's also decent at air spells, which I'll go more into detail below, but she's also a little bit accident prone (see, faults are good and fun!) which can sometimes cause some trouble, especially with all those glass potion bottles around.

Step 3: Background--

Unlike a lot of pets, Kiaveth grew up in a normal, happy home. Her sister Miritri took to physical fighting, like that of swords, so Kiaveth took up the magical, mystical things. The two usually work together, although with all siblings quarrels do break out and usually end with a few cuts and bruises and shrunken ears (don't ask, I never want to relive that moment!).

Step 4: Abilities--

Abilities include air magic, such as wind (anything from a gentle breeze to hurricanes), fog, sleep, and freeze (when combined with a water spell).

And of course, the potion making, which consist mainly of healing potions that acure anything from the common cold to Neggitus to open battle wounds. There are also cures for backfiring magic spells (which I must proudly say, she's practically perfected, as she experiences this a lot).

Step 5: The Look--

Kiaveth is an anthro and kinda short, coming in at a mere four feet, three inches. She's normally found in some fancyful outfit consisting of bells, beads, feathers and lots of ruffles and lace. Unlike most faerie wockies, she has a sleek white fur with small, circular markings down each arm. Her accessories include two golden earings in each ear and sometimes carries a staff as show of her abilities as a white mage. Her wings are a cross between normal faerie wings and butterfly wings and are a swirl of pinks, whites, purples and yellows.

Well, there you have it. So she isn't the most complete character ever and still needs work of course, but in about ten minutes, I'd say it's quite a nice start and I could easily build upon it until I was satisfied. In most cases, you can't create a good character in such a short time, so I'd recomment starting one day and then throughout the next couple days, go back and play with it.

And again, feel free to pester me for ideas if you're stuck or if you want to run your character by me and get a second or third or tenth opinion! I'm always happy to help. And for another character example and a list of personality and fault traits, just visit Kiaveth's petpage.

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