- LillianVeteran Member
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Thu Jun 22, 2023 4:04 pm
Need help with writing your character? Don't have a solid grasp on the app-making process? Need a refresh or a different perspective? Well you've come to the right place! This guide is for anybody who may be having trouble writing or adapting an application for PH. While this guide does do as much to cover as much as you should consider as possible, if you're still stuck on something, do contact a staff member! We only want to help you improve your writing and have fun here.
The beginning of the process, usually you start with a Concept. Maybe you’re watching something and a character or theme catches your fancy, or you just think of an idea and you think it’s something you want to form into a character. Having a good idea of your character’s most basic roots is crucial, as having an unclear vision could lead to the execution of the application to be muddled and unclear, to yourself and to any who may read it. Though you don’t have to come up with an absolute or rigid concept, but being able to describe the idea in short form gives a good basis, like you hear “Fire-Themed Quincy” or “Karma-Based Fullbring” and you have some idea of what’s going on there.
Alright, so you have a concept, but that’s pretty bare bones on it’s own. You know where to start, but there’s no way you’re writing a whole app off of that one simple baseline, so what do you do? Research! Having Knowledge of what you’re going for is vital in the expression of the character idea, because if you’re informed of the subject you’re writing, it makes the end product all the richer as you can come up with connective themes or abilities that creates a whole that’s more than the sum of it’s parts.
So your have your concept, and you’ve got your knowledge, but the real determiner of a great app is Effort! But don’t be mistaken; when we say effort, we aren’t asking you to create a long app full of crazy long sections and esoteric ideas, that just makes a huge mess that’s both difficult to read and difficult to reference. When we say effort, we mean what work you’ve done to convey your idea into a fully realized character! An app created with good effort can be long or short, it really all depends on what idea you’re shooting for, so being able to present a clear, well thought out idea is integral for both the grading process and your character moving forward.
However, do note that if you port a character either from another site or a piece of media, this is seen as something low effort and even frowned upon in extreme circumstances. Please try not to copy other works one for one, and if you’re bringing a character from another site, please review our systems and consider that this is a very different setting than where they were originally written for! A rework of your character may be needed, and taking the time to do that is both appreciated and seen as a work of effort.
What we will use to determine your spirit class, hazard level, appropriate skill levels are feats. Feats are the defined capabilities of your character, such as speed, weapon efficiency, and overall how much skill and development they have. A character who hasn’t really much to show for them probably won’t be accepted with a high spirit class or high skills; you need to give some idea of what they excel in and what they’ve done.
One way of doing this is to detail major feat accomplishments in their history, like say they fought in a war and proved to be a rather durable foe or were able to train themselves up to go at incredible speeds, or they developed some techniques using their spiritual energy regularly. Another common way is to describe them in an attribute or natural ability section, and of course their actual power’s capabilities are considered in this. We just need a good, reasonable basis of your character’s intended capabilities.
Your personality should be at least 10 sentences, written with the intent to give an idea of what your character is like. You may change your mind or want to tweak a thing or two of how they behave when you start playing, and that’s fine! This is just to give a basic idea of who they are as a person, and definitely can be updated later when you’ve gotten them figured out, if you so choose.
Your history should be focused on telling your character’s formation into who they are now, from formative moments in their life to what they’ve done for the world, this section is one of the most important parts of your application. It is imperative that you take the time to carefully consider what their history should consist of, as this is something you’d want to be able to make reference of in the future, past initial approval.
Try to not write a history as you would a roleplay post, but rather write it as if you are making a summarized biography of their life - you’re putting noteworthy moments or feelings, not every time they coughed or their uneventful school life. Though histories are normally written in the third person, don’t think that writing it in a different framing method is off limits; you definitely could write it in the first person or a particular event similar to an IC post if you feel that it’s a more valuable and digestible presentation of their life.
❖ NATURAL ABILITIES vs RACIAL ABILITIES
Little confused on what should go in what section? Natural abilities are traits your character has as their own individual, like their intelligence or strength, or even listing prodigal traits. These are things that are unrelated to their race’s abilities, like you wouldn’t group your proficiency with wielding your Zanpakuto or anything Cero-related there.
Racial abilities, on the other hand, are traits or abilities distinct to your character’s race, this is where you’re listing your character’s spiritual abilities. Things like Hoho, Ceros, Gebet, so have you should be grouped together here.
❖ EQUIPMENT & RESOURCES
Here is where you should consider what things of note your character has. If they have special items or equipment, it is very important to make a listing of them here. Or, if your character has a whole arsenal of some object or something else like that, you can make a more generalized description of their assets. If you’re going for a high Influence or Resources rating, you definitely should list people, companies, or whatever else your character has a hand in or control of here.
❖ BASIC RUNDOWN
In order to foster a balanced, fair IC ground that is both easy to approach as well as easy to develop in, we try to uphold and maintain a grading process that judges every character under the same metric with as little amount of bias as possible. We work as a team to discuss and determine things, as opposed to having every individual member of staff conduct whatever decisions they come to on their own.
If you have questions or concerns about the decisions regarding your app, it’s best to have a talk with your grader first and foremost, or give regards to the communication hierarchy to determine who else you should speak to if that doesn’t work out.
We’re here to help you have fun and be a part of the community, so don’t be afraid to talk to us if you aren’t sure of something.
❖ SPIRIT CLASS
We determine a character’s spirit class based off a variety of factors, from ability potency, to traits, to even their origins. Spirit Class is not an immediate indicator of a character’s strength, but rather the highest level of destruction or influence they are able to exert with their energy, it is a metric of determining how much they can do before they’ve hit their limit.
Take Ichigo for example, despite having only Getsuga Tensho as a noteworthy attack, he would be a pretty high spirit class because he has incredible amounts of energy and thus can fuel that one ability to cause immense destruction to his surroundings, not to mention keep going for a pretty long time despite his injuries or exertions, whereas a character like Hanataro would be on the lower end since he doesn’t have as many demonstrable feats showing his influence upon a large space.
When you’re aiming for a higher spirit class, keep these things in mind. Write a character that has abilities that clearly represent the level you’re pushing for, as well as proper grounding for those abilities’ scale in their history and the context of the character themselves. A normal human isn’t going to be able to bust a skyscraper down because you put in a bit in their history that they were just able to do that, but if you give grounding that they trained or possessed some trait that enables such strength, it’ll be more likely to get through.
Wishes are rewards for winning either four fragments from OTS sections, or winning first place in an OTY section. Winners only receive one of the respective rewards in those events, regardless of how many sections they’ve won in, specifically because wishes enable you to get things you otherwise would need to put more time into, or couldn’t get all together. Of course, you can’t get anything you want from a wish, so as much as you can get a little wild, keep it within reason. Maybe you want a master upon approval, or you want your character to be derived from some powerful being, or maybe some other thing; that’s precisely what a wish is for.
❖ WHAT WE CONSIDER IN AN UPGRADE
You’ve been playing your character for a while, they’ve been busy in the world, and you’re feeling it should be about time they get a boost up in something, but you’re also not sure if they’re there yet. Best advice is to determine what you feel should get a bump up, and look at the threads you have done or reasoning you give to provide evidence as to why this change should take place.
Put together the upgrade and there ya go! Take pride in your character’s accomplishments, don’t be afraid to put in for an upgrade; the worst response you could ever get is just a ‘you need to do more to get this’.
❖ ACQUISITION OF ASCENDANT STATS
Do you want a Master or Grandmaster? Do you want an S or X Hazard Rating? Or maybe even an incredibly high Spirit Class? Well, it’s all possible, but you need to put in a lot of work for it. The threshold of evidence for any of these is far greater than a normal grading, to such a point that we require two staff approvals for it to go through.
If you want your character to get to, say, Master Willpower, you really need to present them as being incredibly mentally resilient and possessing great strength of character consistently across a long period. This is the caliber of beyond normal expectations, this is an even smaller minority of an already small minority that’s represented by Elite or comparable levels across other systems - it’s going to take a lot, but just be persistent and consistent, you WILL get it if you put the effort in for it.
❖ WRITING CANONS
Anyone can make a canon! You can pick anyone from the canon list who is available and play them, though some canons may require extra effort and understanding than others. For your canon to be approved, you need to demonstrate that you understand the character well enough that they could be played believably and work within the setting of PH.
If you want to play a canon and are confident you know everything about that character… Research. You may think you know every nook and cranny of that character, until you actually look at them closer, and it turns out there was a lot more to them that you didn’t initially pick up! Never feel shy about researching, if anything learning more about the canon you want to play may even grow your appreciation for them if say, they were a favorite character of yours; having as good an understanding of a character you can manage really helps.
❖ THE WEIGHT OF YOUR CHARACTER
As PH is a very narrative-driven setting, things like your character’s social standing, job, and rank will come up IC. Let’s say your character is of a minor noble family in the Seireitei; they reasonably would have a degree of pressure to act properly at minimum, because bad behavior would look bad on the family rather than the individual. Maybe other characters don’t like nobles and would even harass your character for being one. Much like in life, who your character is and what they do will and should reflect on them as a person and affect their interactions to some degree.
If your character was a genocidal maniac a few years ago but is now chill, the people who heard of or were affected by their genocidal actions aren’t going to forget about that and may treat your character with any degree of hatred or disgust.
If your character is a member of the Gotei goofing off on Earth instead of doing their job, yes that will reflect poorly on them and yes their superiors may even demote them.
If your character is a member of the Vandenreich and they decide to wildly kill hollows and even attempt an invasion of Hueco Mundo, they will likely get thrown in jail or killed.
Remember, no matter how minor, your character’s actions will be remembered, your character’s actions matter, your character’s actions will have consequences.
❖ USE A DRAFTING PROCESS
Drafting processes are the backbone of writing; though everyone’s way of construction may be different the core tenets are the same. Here’s the process:
1) Get the bare basics down - write some traits, maybe a name, maybe a power theme.
2) Create a skeleton that contains a basic idea of what you’re going for, making notes of anything you feel appropriate.
3) Create a first draft of the app - it doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to get done.
4) Now, this sounds odd, but don’t look at that app for a few days - you will want to have fresh eyes for when you’re creating your next, or often final, draft. You may really want to play that character, but having some patience will help them a lot.
5) Do your final draft. Or a second draft and repeat step 4 if you feel the idea needs more time. You don’t need to rush - this is a hobby. You aren’t missing out if you don’t get this concept out super fast.
❖ RESEARCH SUBJECTS OF INTEREST
Want to write a certain kind of character, but aren’t experienced in the subjects that’d come up while playing that character? Well, just take some time to research about the subject! It never hurts to learn something new, especially if it’ll help with writing your character.
❖ PICK A CHARACTER ARCHETYPE
Want to make a new character, but you’re not sure where to start in terms of a personality or characteristics? Well try picking a character archetype and putting your own twist on it! It’s impossible to be wholly original, but it is possible to have a different spin of something familiar that’s fun to read.
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