My Toon, My Self

First, a disclaimer: I play on a PvE server, and I’ve never done roleplaying. I don’t think up backstory for my characters, nor do I talk in character to other players as that toon. And yet, they do have reality for me as individuals, and I choose and play characters based upon how much I can identify with them. How many of you do the same, and to what level?

I always play female characters, partially because I hate the way that the nelf and human male characters look – all muscle-bound and vaguely pissed-off looking, and partially because I relate to female characters. I tend to play Alliance rather than Horde because everyone I know is heavily Alliance, and well…I would hate to say that I don’t find Horde as attractive (note – I didn’t say that!!!), I just don’t relate to them. (Side note: Blizz, why did you make all of the undead characters look like zombies? Why not cool-looking vampire types? Now, that would be a fun character to play!)

A funny, if somewhat embarrassing story illustrating the extent to which I identify with characters: the preponderance of snow-white skin in Alliance has always bothered me a bit. Why not make Asian or black characters? You can choose darker skins, to an extent, but you rarely see anyone playing them. I rolled a gorgeous little mage, and on my first trip into Westfall, I was griefed by two players from one of the Dutch guilds, one a level 50. They challenged me to duels over and over again, refused to take no for an answer, made /chicken emotes at me, and killed everything I targeted before I could tag it. And my first thought?

“They’re picking on me because I’m black!”

lol…oh, wait, I’m not. Now that’s identification with a character.

So, how many of you roll and play characters that you identify with personally? How many see each character that you play as being it’s own “person”? How many of you have ever taken an alt to Goldshire or wherever, seen that the Darkmoon Faire was there, and caught yourself thinking “Oh, good, she’s never seen this before” and taken that character to the faire to have fun?

Not that I would ever admit to that, of course…

5 Comments so far

  1. veronica (unregistered) on August 2nd, 2006 @ 9:55 am

    I also wish that we had more range to choose from in terms of appearance. Like body types, for example.

    I’m not a huge fan of Second Life, but it would be fantastic if we had similar customization for our toons in WoW. I know there’s an argument to be made for armor fitting properly… but if the same armor can fit undead and tauren, couldn’t it fit a less buxom female?

  2. Madjack (unregistered) on August 2nd, 2006 @ 11:49 am

    “Cool-looking Vampire types”. Sounds like Blood Elves to me. Except they’re not really cool-looking. They look like Night Elves without the tan.
    For cool-looking, I choose the moo-cow. We’re born stone cool.

  3. Young Freud (unregistered) on August 2nd, 2006 @ 5:07 pm

    I got the same problem you have with the human males and the night elf (and by extension, the blood elf male), they all look too masculine and extreme. Shouldn’t elves traditionally be more androgynous and not look like a steroid-adled bodybuilder, especially in comparison to humans?

    I’m not sure the preponderance on snow-white Alliance holds true on all servers. On Khaz Modan, I see a lot of big bald black human guys running around there, I have a friend who has a Dwarven Rogue with dark skin, and myself use a Female Human Rogue with dark skin as an alt (although I’d ID her more as South Asian Indian than African).

    Also, perhaps as a coincidence, if you apply dark skin to one of the grim female human faces, you get a toon that looks a bit like Condi Rice.

  4. Ravven (unregistered) on August 3rd, 2006 @ 4:41 am

    “Also, perhaps as a coincidence, if you apply dark skin to one of the grim female human faces, you get a toon that looks a bit like Condi Rice.”

    *snicker* I’m going to have to try that now. :)

  5. Bendyr (unregistered) on August 3rd, 2006 @ 7:57 am

    I really think that it would have been better if the Undead were all modified models of the Alliance races, just slightly decomposed and decrepit… That would be the best, lore-wise… plus it would be fucking cool.

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