Do mental stats even matter?

You have questions? We may have answers.

Moderators: Active DMs, Forum Moderators

User avatar
Seven Sons of Sin
Posts: 1510
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2014 3:40 am

Re: Do mental stats even matter?

Post by Seven Sons of Sin » Fri Mar 16, 2018 3:20 am

I remember there was a super interesting discussion by a player who played a druid named Cain years ago.

He was a super capable roleplayer, but was trying to figure out why having 8 intelligence suddenly made you illterate, and why was literacy tied with Intelligence. Especially if we are considering Faerun a 15th Century analogue.

It was really interesting. There's also always fascinating remarks made about Charisma and force of personality. Unironically, people with 8 Charisma can appear super likeable than people with 16 Charisma to some players. This is because 8 Charisma characters are often depicted as socially inept, blunt, forceful, demanding, and having conviction. This turns out to be a lot more likeable in a video game than giggles and hawt looks.

I think one of the simplest and most elegant depictions I've ever seen of an 8 WIS character was Daedin's Ubaldo. He never remeberer names of anyone or anything that wasn't super close to him. He butchered names constantly, made up nicknames, and became unreliable whenever you tried to get details out of him unless you also knew the person he was maybe sorta referring to.

It was a light, and comedic touch. Having a negative mental stat is not an egregious offense, and keep in mind that they were never designed to be truly "roleplaying" stats. They're abstract design to base gameplay off of, with some narrative stuff thrown in.
Marsi wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:48 pm
because the narrative wills it.

Wolfgangvondi
Posts: 16
Joined: Sun May 24, 2015 9:18 pm

Re: Do mental stats even matter?

Post by Wolfgangvondi » Tue Apr 03, 2018 3:24 pm

Hello,

Interesting points on the two sides (if we can say that there's two sides)
Anyway, personal i find this type of discussing very interest, in my mind and for myself, helps the ones that are new to Rp (or that are not so new but still have some difficulty whit it, like myself). If we can, has we should, keep the conversation "clean" and on point, I don't seen any negatives.

Anyway, I actually try to roleplay at least to some extend my weaker status. I find it actual, of some help to RP in general and to help give some identity to the char. My real problem is to role play my stronger stats! That's when i feel that I really fail 100%. (unless the strong stats is just str). So even if my capacity to RP is not great, i do try to RP it, when i see the opportunity, or i am able to make the opportunity to RP the stats.(ofc, is not easy, not always work, not always all the other ppl understand.)

But that being said, that's more of my goal ( to get better at RP). When we start talking about the practice of it, in game, some times things do get turn out on there heads.

For example:
One time i had an half orc (not in Arelith) whit the typical -1 to int, -1wis and -1 to cha. The -1 int was more "easy" to Rp. I just talked in broken English ( i kind of do it has an player too so just feels natural to me, (its almost like cheating for me: P ) and had very bad memory (that i also, unfortunately have in RL), and finally It was an char very easy to fool and manipulated. The high Con and Str was easy, he was always in the front of the battel. Always ready to slash open any foe. And carry around heavy stuff, run whit out getting tired, dint complain about injures... an so on.

But in time, the - cha end up feeling strange, when the half orc had become an very liked char by many other Chars. It was actually my must popular char ever. It just happened. Now, maybe we can argue, well its an very nice meat shield, and easy to get him to do what others want, so actually, we can argue, they dint like him, but just liked to use him. Seens an valid point. but like some one already said, good thing that, even if we care about the stats, we don't have the DM always on top of every char cheeking if he RP's every time like he "should" stats wise. because my orc, would, and understandable, be target. (now that i think of it.. the half orc did end up dying (Perma death) in an DM event that i was not even aware... ( Oh S..... : P )

Other example, (this time in Arelith)...
Made an warrior woman (Dana Lorne) I actually planed to do (for the first time) an realy powerful Char. And i thought, lets try to Rp it, growing in power and skill.. and (also whit tips ooc of other players on how to make it mechanical powerful) Long story short. It was the char that i ever had that got herself more in trouble and complety and totaly helpless to defend herself. Dana Lorne had to be rescue a LOT of times.. i mean something like at least one time in 2 or 3 weaks. She just felt an complete victim. The underdark was all over her, kidnapping her a lot of times, making slave of her, thieving her, torture her, selling her, extortion, and so on. Even in the surface she was also getting her Snuggybear handed to her must of the times and getting kidnapped. So my char actually turn out complete the opposite of what I planned. But I just rolled whit it. And it was the must Fun i ever had.(must of the times, not all : P )
Meet some fantastic "Heroes" and even "villains" that rescue her, that i'm 100% sure i would not be able to meet/interact whit half of them if i just stop playing her because i was not felling that things were going rp wise the way i was trying to build her and planed her.

So for me, stats are important ... but i feel that they are more of an starting point to start/facilitate the RP going... but them the "natural flow of the storys" that happen in game, is what matters most.


If someone that have chars whit very high Charisma / Int / Wis that would like to contribute giving some insight how they do it (RP wise) i would love to read about it. (I meet/seen some fantastic chars like that, that were at my eyes, very capable of RPing the high stats)

User avatar
cptcuddlepants
Posts: 423
Joined: Fri Dec 02, 2016 5:52 pm
Location: ruining the server

Re: Do mental stats even matter?

Post by cptcuddlepants » Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:42 pm

Wolfgangvondi wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 3:24 pm
If someone that have chars whit very high Charisma / Int / Wis that would like to contribute giving some insight how they do it (RP wise) i would love to read about it. (I meet/seen some fantastic chars like that, that were at my eyes, very capable of RPing the high stats)
I have a high Wis character who I don't consider wise by conventional definitions. He's impulsive, wears his heart on his sleeve, and driven almost wholly by emotions, whims, and feelings - his own as well as other people's.

He focuses more on empathy, perception, and intuition rather than the common sense and decision-making part of wisdom. He doesn't accept things at face value, he tries to figure out the reasons behind everything and what makes other people tick - their goals, their motivations, their wants and needs and desires. He tries to search between the lines for hidden hints and form opinions based on the unspoken cues he observes, like body language, word usage, and tone. He dwells a lot on what-ifs, cause and effect, possible consequences, and the potential outcomes of actions. He tries to look at situations from every angle, and understand why each side thinks and acts as it does, even if he doesn't agree with it.

Granted, he's not always right in his conclusions - but then again, who is?
When the going gets tough, the tough hide under the table.

Get Jad's portrait here!

Post Reply