Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Character profiles
The vast majority of game projects involve a large number of people filling
a variety of roles.To ensure that everyone sees the characters in the same way,
it is incredibly useful to create a series of character profiles, particularly for
the main characters. It can be months between defining a character and it
being modelled, animated or placed into the game - without clearly-defined
profiles there would be a good chance that the initial vision for the characters
will be lost.
Each profile should have input from the art department (concept sketch)
and the design department (gameplay features, artificial intelligence defini-
tions) and the amount of detail the writer contributes is dependent on the
importance of the character to the story.The scope of the story will also help
define the amount of work required. If the story is relatively superficial or the
character interactions have little depth, it is probably wasteful to create highly-
detailed profiles. Look at the way the characters are going to be used in the
game, the expected depth of the dialogue scenes and tailor your character
profiles accordingly, picking out the features that are relevant.
Sometimes, thinking through the features of each character forces you to
approach them with more care and attention to detail. Even something
simple, like deciding on their favourite colour, forces you to put yourself in
the mind of the character.
The appendix contains a typical character profile. The number of these
categories I use is governed by the depth of the story and how the characters
will interact in the game. How you modify it to your own needs is down to
how best it meets your own way of approaching your characters and how it
fits with the design team's expectations.There is no single way of developing
a character profile, but it is valuable that you do so in some manner.
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