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Same height columns
Easy way, no IE6/7
Developing good taste
Quickly check object descriptions
Instead of having to -click- on an object’s name, display a little box above the cursor on hover?
Allow only 3-5 traits (adjectives) to be selected.
Players should be able to choose 1 talent and 1 flaw (or maybe a mixture of 1 or 2 of each, which must balance each other out?) Talents and flaws must be concrete things that the game can handle. Since character creation is supposed to help flesh out a character, perhaps add a little box where players can explain -why- their character has that talent or flaw, although this would be purely for notes. Check out GURPS 4th edition for ideas on advantages/flaws.
Apparently, Darklands had an interesting character creation process. It was more history-based (which, in our case, could really help players hash out their characters)
You can become someone’s mentor. You can also become mutual mentors. This is a strong bond. What are the benefits?
Utility pets that can transform into various forms and perform useful tasks, such as guarding areas, fetching things, and looking cool.
There’s something about every character that they must find out, such as, say, what skills they are best at. They can either figure this out by brute-forcing it until they find it, or they can talk to people. When someone comes across a person they’re an ‘oracle’ for, they will get a message that they sense <something> about that person. They may then choose to share it with them, or not.
Interesting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dreaming_(spirituality) Particularly the bit about ownership. Here’s our precedent for skill orbs. :)
Building a story from scratch
How to @ scriptfrenzy.org
There’s also a very nice pdf with a questionnaire here: http://ywp.scriptfrenzy.org/files/scriptfrenzy-ywp/sf_ywp_10_wb_hs_chars.pdf
Some of the things in the questionnaire are already included in character creation (physical traits, skills, setting-related bits). Most of them, though, have to do with more psychological get-to-know bits. Some of these may simply develop as the character grows into the game, others might just be good food for thought while figuring out who the character is.
How can we get the players to consider these traits while developing their characters? I’ve seen forum games that explore some of these questions (like likes/dislikes, greatest fears, etc) while developing their characters, to give them more depth?
http://ywp.scriptfrenzy.org/files/scriptfrenzy-ywp/sf_ywp_10_wb_hs_conflict.pdf Has a short explanation of internal and external conflict, their importance to a story, and a questionnaire to help you think about what that conflict might be.
IDEA: Have the story arc system encourage players to figure out these questions. Give them a system that helps them keep focused on the characters’ goals for a particular story arc.
Elements of story
… is one of the most important parts of storytelling. Characters are story. Their flaws and strengths guide the story wherever it’s going to go. How can character development be made explicit in the game? How can it be specifically rewarded? How can it be shaped in such a way that it triggers/forces conflict between players, or players and setting?
Allow only between 3 and 5 ‘special’ adjectives. Allow adjectives to be added to more than just basic body parts.
The place where it all happens.
Seems to have wide support, and can handle the whole dynamic webpage thing: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WAI-ARIA