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Better Villain Writing







Mooney
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© Mooney
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Better Villain Writing

(This post was last modified: 06-11-2016, 08:16 PM by Mooney.)
Okay guys, I take no credit for actually making this up. I was surfing the web, looking up Icyboards stuff when I came across Gotham's Reckoning. Now, this person is a genius, and what they wrote for better villain writing is the bomb. So, I'll link to credit them, and then post the stuff for yava to see (unless you've already seen it). Some of the things have videos, and I dunno how to link em so -shrugs- you wanna see the videos, follow the first link loves <3

Credit:
Where it is found
The profile of them, whom created this guide thing

I am merely reposting it for Yavania's valiant villains!

---------------------------------------------------------

Playing villains can be extremely tough. There is a fine line to walk with them: it's easy to make them cheesy and unbelievable, but without enough bite then they are not taken seriously. Bad guys are something of a specialty of mine (go figure), so I thought I'd offer up some tips on how to pull them off.

1. Make them their own hero.
The villain believes that they are the one who is correct and just. They are acting in the way which they think is the only logical way for a person to act. Very rarely do they think that they are doing something bad, and this is because villains often have moral opinions which are just as strong as a "good" character's. Since the villain lives by these morals, they are good in their own eyes.
[Image: snpfiz6.gif]

If they do something which they perceive as being "evil," like most "good" characters, they are negatively impacted by the thing they are doing. A thief who finds murder abhorrent but has to murder someone in order to escape is not going to be okay with what they had to do, even if the alternative was death.

2. Give them motivation.
This is tied in closely with point one, because almost no one is evil simply for the sake of being evil. They are motivated by something which causes them to act the way they do. It may be revenge, greed, or lust- but it can also be family, a need to be loved, or even fear. Everything that can move a "hero" can be the justification behind a villain's actions as well, the difference is simply how they react to these motivations. The villain is often seen as "evil" because other characters do not understand why the villain reacts to their motivation the way they do, or their reactions violate other characters' or the society's moral code.

3. Stop calling them the bad guy.
Because this can only hurt you. Really. And here's the reasons why:

You are telling other players and characters how to feel about something, and no one likes that.
Your character is getting judged immediately and you are putting a lot of pressure on yourself.
Everyone has a different idea on what a bad guy is, and now you are expected to live up to it.
You could be turning other players away from threading with yours, because they do not want a bad guy to do anything bad to their characters (even when your character wasn't planning to do something bad to them).
You just blew all your character development. Show people that the character is bad, don't tell them.
You are prejudicing yourself against your character. As point one says, every villain is their own hero. That is how you should think of them as well.


4. Stop making them schizophrenics, psychopaths, sociopaths, etc. unless you are willing to put in the effort to deeply research these things.
I typically see this done for the "shock" value. I assure you, the only thing shocking in most of these cases is the immense lack of research and thought that went into these characters. Being schizophrenic does not immediately make you an evil or crazy person. Being a psychopath does not immediately make you an evil or crazy person. Being a sociopath does not immediately make your character an evil or crazy person. It isn't edgy. It isn't scary. It is not on or off, as there are varying degrees. To play them as such severely misrepresents people who actually are the above things, which is unfair to them and just makes your character look like an idiot.

On that note, the character often does not realize that they have this disorder and/or does not think it makes them evil or crazy.



Unless you are willing to put in a lot of time and effort to research the above, then don't label your character as such. Unfortunately, there is not a lot of factual information available on many of these matters. A lot of it is very biased. My best advice would be to actually talk with a person who has what you want to give your character.

5. Make fewer threats, do more.
With threats, you're walking on thin ice. Unless it has been proven that your character will act upon their threat, then any threat they make- no matter how gruesome- will fall entirely flat. Threats can also been seen as a sign of weakness, as it is possible the villain is making this threat because they are currently lacking whatever it is they are making a threat about. That is not typically something a villain would want to disclose, and also is not very villainous of them. You see, villains share a trait with heroes: and that's their determination to succeed. If they are so determined, they have likely already obtained whatever it is they want and have no need to make a threat in the first place. So make fewer threats, and do more stuff- at least until your baddy has built up a reputation.
[Image: iW4kebJ.gif]

6. Follow through.
If your bad guys says they're going to do something bad, then by gum they gotta! If they do not follow through with a threat they've made, then they instantly lose all credibility as a villain. Same thing applies to heroes, doesn't it? If a hero says they are going to catch someone and forever fail to, then no one thinks they are very heroic.

This scene would have been much less dramatic if Bane threatened to break Batman and then. . . never did it. . .
[Image: uGxBGs1.gif]
"JK LOL you know I love you man."

7. Cut out the flawless escapes.
It makes your character extremely tiresome to play with, for one. It's also not believable. And you are missing out on so many awesome threading opportunities, because getting caught doesn't necessarily mean the character has to go to or stay in jail, or die. Say hello to breaking out of prison! Say hello to getting your faith shaken, to manipulating your way out of the situation, to self-reflection, to gaining and losing enemies and allies! And if the character can't escape after getting caught. . . well, face the music, man. Everybody's gotta die sometime, yeah.
[Image: 3QINNR5.gif]

And on the note of escaping. . .

8. It wasn't their plan to get caught all along.
There are way too many risks in their getting caught for it to ever be worth it. This requires so much planning ahead that any deviation from the "plan" would stop it in its tracks, and such deviation is inevitable since your character has no way of knowing for sure how another will act in every single situation. A villain can turn getting caught to their advantage, but it is never a part of their plan.

9. Don't make them emotionless.
Villains are good people doing bad things for what they think are the right reasons. They experience emotions just as deeply- if not more deeply- than the hero. They can be disappointed in themselves. They can feel like failures. And because they can be so fanatic about their beliefs as well, their failures can be even more emotionally crippling to them than a "normal" person.
[Image: Eu6Uksa.gif]







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Amelia
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RE: Better Villain Writing

I love Gotham's Reckoning, and I couldn't agree more with each of these. Especially 4. <3





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Araluen
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RE: Better Villain Writing

(This post was last modified: 06-11-2016, 08:38 PM by Araluen.)
<3 <3 <3 to this guide~ didn't know it existed till today but this is pretty much how I wanted to create Ra's. I saw him as a very human and down to earth villain in the batman movies and wanted to encapsulate that here as well.







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Mooney
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RE: Better Villain Writing

It's awesome! Gotham's stuff is really cool <3

And Ara you have been doing an amazing job with Ra's! I didn't realize exactly how well you've been doing until I read this guide!!! <3 <3 <3







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Pepper

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RE: Better Villain Writing

I used to role play with Gotham, she's freaking awesome!








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Araluen
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© Araluen
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RE: Better Villain Writing

Lololol I didn't quite realize either till i read this guide. Though I wouldn't say great job~ mediocre at best~ ;^;"







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