Creating your Character

Creating a character is a fairly daunting process, and it must be completed before you can try Armageddon. This guide was written to help you navigate this process. If you get stuck, try contacting a Helper.

Create an Account

Before you create a character, you will need to create an account. You will be asked to choose an account name and supply an email address. Your account name is not shown in-game to characters you meet, but is seen by staff members. You must supply a valid email address; once you finish creating your account you will be automatically emailed a computer-generated password to use for your first login. If you don't receive this email, be sure to check your spam folder, and whitelist @armageddon.org if necessary. After you log in to your new account, you will be prompted to create a new password of your own choosing.

After logging in, choose option R from the main menu to create a new character. If you need help at any time during this process, don't hesitate to ask one of our Helpers.

Name

First you will be asked to choose your character's first name. Your character should have a fantasy-oriented name to fit into the game world. Real-world names are usually not acceptable, although many players use names from other (non-Western) cultures. Avoid names like "Bob" or "Heather" that do not have enough of a fantasy 'feel'. Names should be something that parents would realistically name their child, so weird names like "Mrcool" or "Bwgqpcx" are not acceptable. Well-known fictional names (Bilbo, Gandalf, Darth Vader, Sturm, Tanis, etc.) are almost always not accepted.

If you find it hard to come up with a good name, try Samuel Stoddard's Fantasy Name Generator.

Gender

Your character must choose to be male or female. Gender does not affect your character in any way except for which pronouns are used to refer to your character (he/she, etc.). Women and men are equal on Zalanthas.

Avoid imposing your own interpretations and norms on the game world. For example, there is no sexism on Zalanthas; women and men are treated equally. This means that the following would not happen in Armageddon: a man expressing shame at being beaten sparring by a woman; someone referring to women as needing protection or coddling; a woman being shamed for sexual promiscuity while a man is praised for it.

Race

New players are limited to four races: humans, half-elves, city elves, and dwarves. It is highly recommended that you play a human for your first character. Humans are just like real-world humans, or those in most other roleplaying games. On Zalanthas, half-elves, elves, and dwarves are significantly different from other fantasy-genre games, movies, and books - so if you choose not to play a human, you should read the documentation for your chosen race.

  • Race Chart. artist: Biscuits
    "Race Chart"

    Player artwork by Biscuits

Guild aka Class

New players are limited to six classes: warrior, ranger, merchant, assassin, pick-pocket, and burglar, with the exception that city-elves cannot play rangers (because they live in cities). It is highly recommended that your first character be either a warrior, a ranger, or a merchant.

Keep in mind that the guild of your character only decides what skills your character will get, and which skills they will be able to pick up. It has nothing to do with what profession your character will have, or want to have, or what things they will enjoy or be good at. Pick a guild that suits your character's background: think over how s/he will have acquired the skills s/he has.

Subguild aka Subclass

New players may choose from 24 different subguilds, which are listed and described on the subguild page. Any subguild should be suitable for a new player; there are no bad choices. Be aware that if you choose a guild/subguild combination that sounds redundant, like Pickpocket/Thief, Ranger/Hunter, or Merchant/crafting subguild, you will likely receive no additional skills, although you may start out more proficient at some skills than you would by choosing the guild alone.

Your character's subguild will grant them a set of additional skills at which they will start out somewhat more proficient than their guild skills, but have less potential to become really skilled at. Subguild can represent what jobs your character might have had thus far in their lives.

Attributes

At this point in character creation, you have the option to choose the general order of your character's attributes. Attributes, also known as 'stats', are measures of your character's innate abilities. They are strength, agility, wisdom, and endurance. You may skip this step if desired by pressing the [Enter] key on your keyboard without choosing a stat order.

Your character's attributes affect your hit points, your movement points, your stun points, how much weight you can carry, how many items you can carry in your inventory, how hard you hit in combat, how frequently you hit in combat, and how quickly you can improve your skills.

Main Description

  • Still Unbroken. artist: Briar
    "Still Unbroken"

    Player artwork by Briar

Now you will be asked to write a few sentences describing your character's physical appearance. Your character's description is one of the most important parts of character creation. A good description gives other players a clear mental picture of the character, enhancing the roleplay for both you and them.

Descriptions are a minimum of four lines; around 7-10 is good. You should only describe your character's physical features. You can include their gender and race in your description. You can include their body type - are they tall or short, thin or fat, muscular or flabby? You can include their facial features - their eye color and shape, the shape of their nose, jawline, or cheekbones, the color of their lips or eyebrows, etc. You can also decide your character's hair color, length, and texture, but do not indicate the hairstyle unless that is how you always want your character's hair to look. Clothing and equipment should never be mentioned in the description of your character. Items are available in the game, and since they can change over the course of play, they should not be part of the description.

Follow basic rules of spelling and grammar, and write the description in complete sentences, in the form of a paragraph. Write the description in 3rd person; i.e. 'This is a tall and sinewy elf' rather than 'I am a tall, sinewy elf'. Don't put your character's name in the description -- it's not something a person would know just from looking at them. Do not describe how your character moves or speaks, since the viewer may be looking at them while they are asleep or knocked out, and wouldn't know how they customarily move or speak. Similarly, don't have your character performing actions in the description, such as nodding or whistling.

Keep your lines 80 characters long or less, (more than 80 can cause scrolling problems on some people's terminals), use a spelling checker, and proofread your text. Terminate your description with a ~ on a line by itself.

There's no need to feel intimidated by this process, or feel the need to write the greatest description ever. A few lines in plain English should be fine.

If you need some help, we have provided some sample descriptions.

Short Description

You will be asked to provide a short description. Your short description is how other characters see and identify you. It is displayed whenever you use a command. For example, if your short description is 'the slender, ebon-haired woman' and you walk north into a room with other characters, they will see "The slender, ebon-haired woman has arrived from the south." Your short description also provides keywords for other characters to use when interacting with you. Using the same example, other characters might 'look slender' to see your character's main description and equipment list, or 'tell ebon Hello there, how are you?' to speak to you. A list of acceptable and unacceptable types of words can be found by looking at this help entry: Sdesc Words

Height, weight, and age

Next, you will be prompted to enter numerical values that represent your character's height, weight, and age. Your height and weight are relative to your race, and the character generator will tell you the acceptable ranges for them. These aspects of your character should reflect the description you have already written; for example if you have described your character as being tall for their race, you should choose a height in the upper part of the range given.

Height for characters is given in inches. Weight is measured in stones, which is roughly equivalent to a kilogram in real life. You will be asked to enter your character's weight in ten-stones, so divide the weight by ten.

We recommend making your first character between 20 and 30 years of age, as extremes on the age range can lead to bad stats, or make it more difficult for your character to get employed.

Origin

You will now be asked to provide an origin for your character. The origin of your character is where they were born or where they grew up. This is not necessarily where you actually start playing the character; that detail will be chosen after you enter the game for the first time. The location your character is from will determine your accent. In some cases, this will determine your citizenship. Be aware that there may be in-character consequences for being from one location and starting in another, as relations between different locations in game change from time to time. (For example, Tuluki characters may not be very welcome in Allanak and vice versa.) Should you choose a character from Tuluk, you must also select where to put your citizenship tattoo in order to proceed to the next step. You may also pick a nomadic location as your origin, which will allow you to start with a tribal accent and the language Bendune, but no citizenship or accent that is from anywhere else.

For your first character, you will only be able to start in Allanak. This is the most populous place in the game and you are much more likely to run into another player in this location. Additionally, we highly recommend that you choose to play a character from Allanak in Allanak--as mentioned above, there may be in-character consequences for being from one city and starting in another!

Background

Once again you're asked to write four or more lines, this time describing your character's background. This can include their history as well as describe their personality. Other characters do not see your character's background; it is a tool for your use in roleplaying, and for staff to better understand your character's motivations.

Your background is not in any way restricted by your guild. A character of guild warrior doesn't have to be a battle-loving hero. Another thing is that in no way does your character need to have an extreme background. Most people's lives on Zalanthas would be rather common: working class parents, tough life, worked since young age, never got any schooling. Remember that it is illegal for most people to know how to read and write. Although normally the family of your PC doesn't exist in the game, this doesn't mean they have to be dead. You can role-play that they are there virtually, even include them in emotes occasionally for a feel (such as when visiting your parent's house, etc).

Take time to flesh out the personality of your character, and think of what events in their life have shaped them. What has happened, what were the conditions like during the part of their life that occurred before you created the character. Think of how your character acquired the skills that they know. Who taught them how to fight, and why? Perhaps you'd like to have a non-coded profession for your character: cleaning maid, errand-boy/girl, nanny, tanner, laborer... Anything that fits into the game world, and the same applies to making up professions for your parents.

With your first character, it will be hard to make a long and detailed background simply because you don't know enough about the game world. You may be tempted to have your pc come from a far off land to explain a lack of familiarity with the city. It is acceptable not to know where everything is. Concentrate on describing the personality and goals of your character, along with what has shaped them in their life. The What You Know page will give you a quick sketch of what life in each city is like, and may give you ideas for your character's family and background.

We have provided some sample backgrounds.

Review and Submit:

You've created your first character, congratulations! You will have a chance to review the choices you've made and to edit anything you're unhappy with. Once you're pleased with your character, type U and [Enter] to submit your character for review. Staff members will review your character for typos, text formatting, and to make sure your character will fit into the gameworld. Your character should be approved within 24 hours (typically in the 1-8 hour range). You will receive an email letting you know when your character is approved and ready for you to log in.

Quick Tips:

  • You're more likely to encounter other players in the city-states (Allanak), but you are even more likely to encounter other players during peak times (approximately 8 PM Eastern Time).
  • Do you have questions? Do you want to get involved in the community? The General Discussion Board is where you can interact with the Armageddon player community; we highly recommend that new players get involved here!

Next guides:

Be sure to read the What You Know page before logging in. We also recommend the Walkthrough to help with your first few days playing.