Shady Personalities

crow02 Shady PersonalitiesShades of Grey

With the impending/eventual release of Heroes of Shadow, I wonder how the inherent darkness of the new player builds will impact roleplaying elements of the game. I am optimistically hoping it will encourage players to put more thought, detail, and depth into their back story. But on the other hand, it is much less work to play a simple evil character or an unaligned opportunist.

For me, Batman is one of the best examples of the kinds of characters I’d like to see. Dark but good. Brooding. Complex. Filled with sorrow, fueled by revenge, but in control of his actions and emotions. Lonely, alone, and at the same time masquerading as the ‘playboy’ Bruce Wayne. Giving of himself so that others might benefit, but ultimately destroying himself in the process.

Black and White = Boring

Sure, it is very easy to play a stereotypical evil or good character, but what about a character that uses abilities that are traditionally considered evil for a good? How about a necromancer that brings beloved pets back to life? I personally think my cat would make an adorable lich kitten. Or perhaps an evil character that hunts down and only kills other evil characters, like Dexter? Powers considered to be “evil” can be used to defend the innocent just as easily as “good” power can be. But of course, “evil” and “good” are more perception and perspective than fact… but that’s a conversation to save for another time.

The release of Heroes of Shadow holds great promise to encourage players to play their characters with a greater degree of realism. The act of killing, in itself, is considered to be evil by many modern religions. It has always bothered me a little that  characters (especially Good/Lawful Good) seem to have little or no remorse for their slain enemies. That, in itself, is a scary kind of evil in my humble opinion.

Any Evil Plans?

I’m looking forward to playing one of these new builds at public play encounters. The only down-side to encounters is that it is so short, it discourages some people from putting a lot of work into their character background. I’m waiting to put too much thought into my back story until the supplement is released, but I have a few ideas.

I also like the idea of an evil-ish campaign. . In my home campaign, I don’t think it would be too difficult to present a major conflict, and give players the option to join the “evil” side, and remake their characters accordingly.

What are you looking forward to in the impending release of Heroes of Shadow? Any evil plans?

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