Give Me Character Flaws
Sometimes I think I’m a little odd. When I play games I don’t want to be the ‘best’ (except for in Street Fighter IV in which case I will destroy you like Godzilla took down Japan) and MMORPGs aren’t any exception. I don’t want to be on top of the DPS meter or the guy in the room with the glowiest sword or one who has the baby rhinos for shoulder pads. I do, however, want to be unique.
I believe that the things that truly make us individual and define us as people our are flaws. No one is perfect and it’s our failings and foibles that make us interesting. So why does my damn avatar always have to be Mr Perfect?
We’ve seen character traits, abilities, advancements and even deities in our MMORPGs but we’ve never seen flaws before. The only game that I can think of that even close to offering them was Medieval: Total War, and that wasn’t even a RPG. Yes, my friends thought I was a little strange but I found it exhilarating leading my army of inbred German Princes into battle. They weren’t perfect (in fact some were deformed) but that just made them all the more special.
I’d like to see a MMORPG force (as would be the only way) some character flaws on us. Arrogance, vanity, chauvinism, pride, hedonism, idiocy, gluttony, the list goes on. Of course they couldn’t just be negative, maybe more like a double edged sword offering some benefit along with their drawback. Cowardice, for instance, might make you more vulnerable to fear effects yet give you a bonus to running speed. It would certainly make character creation a lot more involved and thoughtful, making us actually think about who we going to play along with what we are going to play.
Honestly, who would you rather have in your group? The boring himbo Warrior or the Mage with proctophobia that always has to stay in front of the group? The latter might not be as easy but it would be a hell of a lot more fun.