Role Play Tip: building a psychological profile before you play

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Role Play Tip: building a psychological profile before you play Empty Role Play Tip: building a psychological profile before you play

Post  EvilNerd on Wed Feb 22, 2012 2:41 pm

I recently enjoyed a fan fiction thread started by Minus2degrees and it got me to thinking I should share with the community a system that I have used for creating a very simple psychological profile.

What is a profile?
The profile is a simple rating system that assists in character development. I am a long time role playing geek having played my first game of D&D with the first edition back in late 70's or early 80's...time escapes me. In college I started a game group focused on a classic pencil and paper game called Top Secret. As you can imagine from the name, Top Secret was an espionage game and while it was not perfect, it had a great system for psychological profile and I have used it over and over again.

Why the profile?
You can use the profile to help frame your character's state of mind, background and attitudes. The factors can help you figure out how you might approach various situations in the game. I guess it's a gaming aid.

How does it work?
There are 6 factors that constitute this simple profile:

1. Passion - measures the degree to which you commit yourself to a cause or idea
2. Piety - measures spiritual commitment
3. Selfishness - I think this one is pretty obvious
4. Cruelty - high cruelty might kick puppies and total cruelty my slay puppies etc.
5. Loyalty - loyalty to an idea, group or cause
6. Sanity - Are you all nuts or just a little nuts?

To each one of these factors you assign a level or severity:

1. None
2. Low
3. Some
4. High
5. Total

You can jot them down in a notepad file and reference it once in a while if you need a reminder. If something happens in game that you think may shake the foundation of your character's beliefs you can change the levels associated with these factors to reflect the change. For example, Evarwyn's transition from a dispicable assassin to the hero of Skyrim! cheers

Same Possible Examples

1. Thalmor Soldier - possible profile
Passion - high - committed to the cause
Piety - don't know enough about lore to comment on this
Selfishness - low or some
Cruelty - some or high
Loyalty - high or total
Sanity - high

2. Forsworn- possible profile
Passion - total - committed to the cause
Piety - high or total - don't sure but it seems like there is a spritual element to their operation
Selfishness - low or none
Cruelty - some or high
Loyalty - total
Sanity - I guess you could argue for none or total on this on

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Role Play Tip: building a psychological profile before you play Empty Re: Role Play Tip: building a psychological profile before you play

Post  Herxes on Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:20 am

Intriguing, I've built a psychological profile for my Redguard "Herxes" but it's not as in depth and is almost completely vainity/power-centric

As I said this guy just wants power, doesn't care if he has to slay 10,000 wolves and bears to achieve mastery in smithing and will traipse the land for demon's hearts to ensure the armour he wears and the weapon he carries are the most fearsome in the whole of Tamriel.

To that end he keeps his ears to the ground about daedric quests in particular figuring that their artifacts will "make do" until more power is available and they can serve as trophies in his halls. Whilst he doesn't in fact kneel or serve the daedric princes he does respect their ultimate power.

He snubbed the companions on learning of their lycanthropy (after helping Farkas? Retrieve the first axe piece), seeing it as a crutch and a sign of weakness to rely on a complete transformation.

He's not necessarily selfish but help he lends to people is generally to test his mettle or show his ability. This is no more prevalent than when fighting dragons a deed he sees as sport and display rather than any kind of defensive heroism.

If he is to take on Alduin it will not to be to save the world but to prove he can.

He is going to join the Empire for the very reason the Redguard as a race despise them, they are perceived as weak for signing the treaty with the Thalmor and "selling" south Hammerfell before eventually releasing the Redguard from their ranks following their refusal to stop fighting. He figures that where they are weak, he will bring strength, he will be their "Goliath" and the World will know that order was brought about by the unmatched might of Herxes.

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