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Character description


Kallanni

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I think the limit is 1,000 characters and there certainly have been discussions. I've forgotten beyond that, but there was some sort of reason for the limit.

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Its a brief description, not a memoir of your character and their abilities since they were born.

 

Batman's secret identity is Bruce Wayne, a wealthy American industrialist. As a child, Bruce witnessed the murder of his parents, Dr. Thomas Wayne and Martha Wayne, which ultimately led him to craft the Batman persona and seek justice against criminals. He resides on the outskirts of Gotham City in his personal residence, Wayne Manor. Wayne averts suspicion by acting the part of a superficial playboy idly living off his family's fortune and the profits of Wayne Enterprises, his inherited conglomerate. He supports philanthropic causes through his nonprofit Wayne Foundation, but is more widely known as a celebrity socialite. In public, he frequently appears in the company of high-status women, which encourages tabloid gossip. Although Bruce Wayne leads an active romantic life, his vigilante activities as Batman account for most of his time.

850 characters

 

Sent as a baby to Earth from the dying planet Krypton, Kal-El was adopted by Martha and Jonathan Kent of Smallville, Kansas. Growing up as Clark Kent, he devoted his life to helping others with the abilities he developed from Earth's sun. Moving to Metropolis, he became Superman, while still maintaining his secret identity as Clark Kent, who works at the Daily Planet newspaper.

380 characters

 

Superman possesses the ability to fly under his own power, incredible strength and near invulnerability, as he can only be harmed by the element Kryptonite. His eyes can emit bursts of heat, while vision ranges from the microscopic to the telescopic. His vision is also capable of a broader spectrum than human eyes, able to see x-rays and radio waves. He can hear faint sounds amongst a bustle of noises by concentrating. His lungs are capable of holding air for long periods of time in environments without oxygen, and the ability to compress this air and exhale it in a freezing capacity.

580 characters.  Can cut it down to fit the first paragraph if I tried.

 

Peter Parker was orphaned at the age of six when his parents, were killed in an airplane crash overseas. He went to live with his uncle and aunt, Ben and May Parker, in Forest Hills, New York. Peter was extremely smart and worked his way to become an honors student at Midtown High School. However, Peter's shyness and scholastic interest often made him a social outcast, being overshadowed by the likes of high school bully, Flash Thompson, among other popular kids.

While attending a public exhibition demonstrating the safe handling of nuclear laboratory waste materials, sponsored by the General Techtronics Corporation, Peter was bitten by a radioactive spider that had been irradiated by a particle accelerator used in the demonstration. Making his way home afterwards, Peter discovered he had somehow gained incredible strength, agility, and the ability to cling to walls; spider-like traits that he immediately associated with the spider bite. 

951 characters.

 

A wealthy American business magnate, playboy, philanthropist, inventor and ingenious scientist, Anthony Edward "Tony" Stark suffers a severe chest injury during a kidnapping. When his captors attempt to force him to build a weapon of mass destruction, he instead creates a mechanized suit of armor to save his life and escape captivity. Later, Stark develops his suit, adding weapons and other technological devices he designed through his company, Stark Industries. He uses the suit and successive versions to protect the world as Iron Man. Although at first concealing his true identity, Stark eventually publicly reveals himself to be Iron Man.

650 characters.

 

Could rewrite the description too fit in COH bio, think Spiderman would be too long.

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7 hours ago, merrypessimist said:

The limit is 1023 characters, so all the big name character bios you did would fit in the box as it stands.

 

CoH supports Unicode for foreign languages that don't use the ASCII alphabet (originally, I believe, for the abortive Korean release); each Unicode character is 16 bits wide, so each one used in a background eats two characters worth of the space available.

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14 hours ago, Kallanni said:

Not sure if its already been stated but could we update the descriptions (were we can write our individual character details) to allow for more words. It would be greatly appreciated. 


The description field is for brief, concise, descriptions.  Not novels.

Write it out in notepad first and edit mercilessly.

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Would love to see it, but I'd want the wonky editor (used here and elsewhere in game) to be addressed first.

 

In the meantime, https://fbsa.cityofheroes.dev/wiki/Main_Page

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I tried to combine Circle and DE, but all I got were garden variety evil mages.

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Maybe, its purpose is to introduce a character.

 

For example, when we tell a story about a war hero, we choose their most important achievement. In short, we want to emphasize it to get our audience's attention. We add too many things, and our audience gets confused.

 

"It sounds like he was a great person, but how did he get that medal again?"

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On 9/27/2021 at 1:32 PM, Doc_Scorpion said:


The description field is for brief, concise, descriptions.  Not novels.

Write it out in notepad first and edit mercilessly.

 

That's your opinion, which you're certainly entitled to.   On at least a couple of my characters, it's my origin story, and having to truncate to 1000 characters puts a severe cramp on creativity.     I'm not asking to be able to write a novel, but a bump to 2k would help considerably.

 

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2 hours ago, krj12 said:

On at least a couple of my characters, it's my origin story, and having to truncate to 1000 characters puts a severe cramp on creativity.


I follow multiple micro-fiction accounts on Twitter...  Then over in the Art & Multimedia subforum you have the 'Share your awesome bios' thread, where there's tons of well done work that fit within the existing limit...

So, I find it hard to buy the argument that the current limit severely cramps creativity.  I give and grant it isn't easy (and I'm an occasional haiku* poet, so I get it), but it's certainly doable.

* Proper English language haiku, which is 3-5-3 not the 5-7-5 folks learn in school.

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14 hours ago, Doc_Scorpion said:

Proper English language haiku, which is 3-5-3 not the 5-7-5 folks learn in school.

That's a Collom lune, measured in words, not syllables, and invented by the poet Jack Collom as a variation of the Kelly lune, invented by Robert Kelly in the 1960s and having a 5-3-5 syllable pattern. Hardly comparable to the history of haiku, which evolved in the 1600s from the opening stanza of renga poems (first recorded in 711AD) to become standalone works, being renamed from hokku to haiku by Masaoka Shiki in the late 1800s. Collom's variation came from misremembering the pattern for a lune, and became its own variant that is currently more popular than Kelly's.

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14 hours ago, Doc_Scorpion said:


So, I find it hard to buy the argument that the current limit severely cramps creativity.  I give and grant it isn't easy (and I'm an occasional haiku* poet, so I get it), but it's certainly doable.

 

Just like some stories can be told in 3 pages and others need ten thousand-page novels, it completely depends on the person and the character. I've got 100-some characters. Some, I can knock off the basics in a quick paragraph. Some hit the limit and ask for more. And yes, I use the FBSA wiki as well. If I wrote up everything dealing with all the characters just on Everlasting, that's all I'd be doing for the next few months. 

 

 

Primarily on Everlasting. Squid afficionado. Former creator of Copypastas. General smartalec.

 

I tried to combine Circle and DE, but all I got were garden variety evil mages.

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1 hour ago, A Cat said:

Don't follow the syllable numbers too religiously. The famous masters sure didn't. 


Agreed, as Basho himself said "Better a good poem with one word too many than a poor poem with just enough".

But that brings in the question WRT to the description box - how much is enough?  A two thousand character limit would seem to be "reasonable", but to my mind that seems to be kicking the can down the road.  (More on that below.)

 

1 hour ago, Greycat said:

Just like some stories can be told in 3 pages and others need ten thousand-page novels, it completely depends on the person and the character. I've got 100-some characters. Some, I can knock off the basics in a quick paragraph. Some hit the limit and ask for more.


True, but somewhat orthogonal to my point...  which was addressing the OP's claims WRT creativity.  Limits and creativity are not mutually exclusive.


We should also consider that there's two parties to this transaction - the writer and the reader in game.  How much text is it reasonable to ask the reader to consume?  Is it reasonable to ask them to scroll or enlarge the box to take up half the screen to read a simple character description?  Where does it end?  We need to look at this from a wider point of view, not just the narrow one concentrating on the writer.  Because as sure as the sun rises in the east, raise the limit to two thousand characters, and we'll eventually be right back here with people insisting that it's simply not enough.  But raise the limit too high, and you start to reach the point where people (in game) will be turned off from reading the character descriptions because they've encountered one too many eye searing novels.

Hence my emphasis on brevity and conciseness.  If a full origin story demands a ten thousand page novel, then write a summary or synopsis instead.  If you're a frustrated novelist, there are other (more suitable) outlets than an MMORPG.

I haven't been clear here, but I'm not necessarily opposed to raising the limit...  I just want to see some discussion of why it's desirable to do so and what actually constitutes a reasonable limit taking all factors into account.

 

2 hours ago, srmalloy said:

That's a Collom lune, measured in words, not syllables


Getting off topic here, but...  English language haiku are counted in syllables, not words.

(Damm, wordy this morning.  I have a #@%@# blog entry due tomorrow that I haven't been this motivated to write.)

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Srry for not responding directly but most of you are saying the same thing. And i appreciate all of your responses but i do want to clarify something about my original comment....

 

I do not intend to write novels or even back story (personally i don't think everyone should know what it is without talking IC with me). My descriptions usually consist of a public PPD file. Which is very difficult to shorten and still make it look and sound like a file the police would actually have. Again, i understand the reason for having a restriction. Its not meant to be your life's story.

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I’ve written literally hundreds of bios. I am a writer and love to write. I’ve written bios for my own toons as well as other people. While it is certainly possible to fit a full story into 1023 characters, increasing the character count does give you more flexibility. I am all for it.

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Find me on Everlasting or Indom as:
Marbing (Psi/Rad Corruptor), Fortunata Moon (Fortunata Widow), Dynanight (Fire/DM Tank), Timesync (Elec/Time Corruptor), Static Sparrow (Elec/TA Controller), Cryo Punk (Ice/Cold Controller), Chamelea (SJ/Bio Stalker)Sword Fist (Claws/SR Scrapper), Mangusuu (DP/Nin Blaster), Blink Shot (Beam/Martial Blaster), Gear Fox (Beam/Traps Corruptor), Phonoalgia (Pain/Sonic Defender), Powered (FF/Energy Defender), Nullpunkt (Rad/Kin Corruptor), Black Fate (Fire/Therm Corruptor), Mirror Mage (Ill/Dark Controller),Gravoc (Gravity/Energy Dominator), Mind Pyre (Fire/Psi Dominator), Nettlethorn (Plant/Thorn Dominator), Boggle Blade (Psi/Invuln Stalker), Kelvin White (Ice/Regen Stalker), Dead Haze (Katana/DA Scrapper), Echo Boom (Sonic/EM Blaster), Ceyko (Archery/Time Blaster), Brainwasher (Mind/Poison Controller)Nachteule (DP/Dark Corruptor)Fulgrax (Axe/Elec Armor Scrapper)Void Knife (DB/Ice Stalker)Tryptophan Zombie (Mind/Kin Controller)Indo Manata (WP/Staff Tank), Masuku (Claws/WP Stalker)Blackbright (Rad/Energy Sentinel), Bedlam Bane (Sonic/Poison Corruptor), Helena Black (Necro/EA Mastermind), Boom Ranger (Sonic/TA Corruptor), Grave Sentinel (FF/Dark Defender), Dead-Life (DM/Regen Brute)

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