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Character Building Iv: Fleshing It Out

Posted by ladyofdragons , in On Game 18 April 2012 · 1,670 views

This is a continuation of this post.

Next step in my character building is generally going shopping.  Which is fun and all, but in this case not particularly interesting to write about.  light armor, bow, and a few cool trick arrows in addition to standard gear.

After that, it's the dessert after the meat and potatoes.  Who is this character?  What are her motivations?  I've got a few clues from my building exercise:
  • She is very solitary in nature. The noisy silence of forest life is especially calming to her. She finds people to be noisy and stinky and have terrible manners, and generally avoids cities if she can. When in a city, she verges on panic attacks.
  • She is extremely intuitive, and puts great stock in the balance of all things. She seeks to reduce her impact on the forest. She eats little meat, and seeks to understand all creatures.
  • A single well-placed shot is better than a volley of misses. She prefers to wait for the right opportunity. Patience is her virtue.
  • she is a half-elf.
  • she has a favored enemy of giants and goblinkind.
  • the prestige class I'm going towards is nature warden, which combines a harsh survivalist attitude with a bond with all animals.
  • she had a brutal childhood, and out of that experience has little fear.
  • she doesn't know more than basic reading or writing.
Combining all these things together, I'm beginning to get an idea of a back story.  it doesn't have to be exhaustive at this point, I can fill in more later, and work with my GM to come up with some options of things that would fit into his campaign.

Back Story
Oraiste was born as Amber Pool to a human scrubwoman and a handsome elven stranger who left after a one night stand.  She was raised in the city (city to be named later).  Angry with the burden of an unwanted half-breed child, her mother and those who surrounded her abused and beat her.  Solemn and quiet, little amber was no shrinking violet.  She learned to abide the harshness of her life but harbored a deep seated resentment that she took out on her abusers with small traps.


Her mother died of lung sickness when she was 11.  Kicked out to the street, she asked around the elves that she met about where they lived, thinking that life with the people of her sire must be better than what she had experienced there in the city.  One older elf, saddened by her plight explained to her where she could find a group of elves living in the forest.  She was warned that life there may be no better than what she had, and that she would not be welcomed with open arms due to her mixed parentage.  With few options, she took her few coins that she had begged and got a ride to the forested area of the elves from traders.

The elves, as expected, did not welcome her with open arms.  But they also did not turn her away.  At first she slept in the stables, and she learned to be of use to the elves in the care of the horses, with whom she seemed to have a special bond.  With her flaming orange hair, they called her Oraiste.  The elves were not kind to her, but they were not unkind, which was better than she had been treated in the city.  All the while working with the horses she was truly enamored with the forest, with its life and its quiet beauty.  When she was not called upon for tasks, she spent much time alone.  Curious about hunting, the elves taught her to shoot a small bow, and she took to it like a fish to water, proving to have an eagles eye for the tiniest target.  She lived in the loft in the stables this way for a few years.   Eventually Seluene, A pragmatic elven ranger, was impressed enough by her skills and her nature and agreed to take her as an assistant and student and took her away to the far reaches of the forest to learn.

The next three years Oraiste spent in the forest with Seluene, learning to live with the forest and sharpening her skills.  While they butted heads at first given that Oraiste has a rather stubborn streak, Seluene was a wonderful mentor and the two eventually became great friends.  When ranging far in the forest towards the high hills, they came upon some destructive giants.  In the fight to defend the area, the giants were driven away, though Seluene was killed.  Oraiste grieved for her friend, and has stayed in the area to defend it against further incursion from the giants.

Speach & Mannerisms
This part is important to know before you get to the table.  How does your character speak?  Some people use accents to differentiate characters.  I know from experience it's hard for me to keep that accent up, so I tend to avoid it and go with mannerisms instead.  From my character information above, I know a calm, slow, steady voice would be good.  Almost detached at times, but certainly able to be riled up.

In Conclusion
There.  One character created.  I'm sure I left out a few details, but they're safely figured out and in my Hero Lab portfolio.  But as you can see the seed of the idea is carried through all the steps, guiding the growth into a fully-fledged character I can bring to the table and start playing from day one.