Does anyone sincerely want to play as "ugly" characters in games?

someguy1231

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With all the discussion lately about the need for more "innovative" or "unconventional" character designs (particularly regarding female characters), I wanted to ask if you would play a game where the main character is ugly. No, I don't mean "unconventionally attractive", "attractive in a different way", or any of those other euphemisms. I mean flat-out repulsive, unattractive, borderline-deformed UGLY.

Nor am I talking about a game where said ugliness is played for comedic purposes. I'm sure many of us have played around with character creators in games in an attempt to create the most hideous character possible, and had a good laugh at the results. But that's not what I'm talking about here.

For me, the answer is an unambiguous "no". Whether male or female, if the main character doesn't look good, I can't bring myself to care about them. Even if their ugliness is a plot point, that won't get me to care. I've watched or read plenty of stories about ugly people in other media already.

Simply put, people like to look at characters they find attractive. In World of Warcraft, the most popular races for female characters are Humans, Blood Elves, Night Elves, and Draenei. All of those are widely considered the sexiest races in WoW. By contrast, the least popular female races are Orcs, Goblins, Tauren, and Dwarves, who are generally considered the ugliest. You think that's just a coincidence?

My point is, whenever games have given players the option to create an "ugly" character, most of them won't use it. In addition, most of those that do use it generally do so ironically or for laughs, rather than to make any kind of serious statement about beauty standards or body image or anything like that.
 

Pseudonym

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Sure. If the gameplay was good. I sometimes create ugly charactars with the charactar creator. I don't empatise with people based on their looks. Nor does empatising with the main charactar matter that much to me. I'd probably play as an orc if I played WoW.

I may not be in the majority, and you might not be able to imagine caring about ugly people but I assure you I exist.
 

Aerosteam

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Truthfully, no.

I play some games for the interesting characters, since they're all fictional people they might as well be good-looking I think. I'm not going to play a 200 hour RPG if the devs purposefully made me look like a failed test subject for the sake of diversity or something. And having the main character, the one person who is supposed to be the link between the player and the game be like that... I don't want it.
 

Darks63

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No I love aesthetics and having a beautiful character is the centerpiece for that love. I can even tolerate stupid stuff like boob armor if it is aesthetically pleasing and creative looking.
 

josemlopes

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Meh, it really depends on the character, he may even not be atractive but have a charismatic face, basicly a Steve Buscemi.

Now, just ugly for the sake of being ugly? Not really.

And most of the times characters arent even all that pretty, they are cool looking since being cool tops being pretty.
 

Bob_McMillan

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No, because if I could play as a normal person, why would I ever bother with being ugly? More often than not I wouldnt fiddle around with the character creator beyond hair, eye, and skin color because I know I probably couldn't do better than the base character. I would prefer to play as a default character than one of my own creation who's disfigurements will annoy me through out of the playthrough. So if I had to play as an abomination that wasn't even created by me, I would just skip out on the game.
 

Silvanus

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Potentially, yes. If I'm playing a roleplaying game, I don't want to always be roleplaying attractiveness fantasies.


Similarly, I don't shun books that feature ugly characters, because that would be ridiculous.
 

Erttheking

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I'm kinda tired as playing as beautiful people (Or at least people I'm informed are beautiful) so Hell yeah.
 

Meinos Kaen

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Depends. If the character is a good written character and the gameplay is good? Why not. If it's ugly just for the sake of being ugly? Nope.

And even then... I have to admit, if I will have to stare at something on a screen for hours on end, I'd prefer if it didn't make my corneas bleed.
 

happyninja42

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Depends on my character concept. I put a lot of backstory into the characters I make, for just about any game. If the game has a character builder, then yeah I might make them "ugly", if it makes sense for the story. But if the game has a premade character, I don't care either way. For example, the Legacy of Kain series, as well as the Soul Reaver games (yes I know they're all in the same world, I'm just differentiating between Kain and Razael as the protagonist). Those characters were both butt ugly, but tons of people enjoyed those games.
 

SoreWristed

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I guess Styx : master of shadows kind of tiptoed this area, but styx himself was still pretty goodlooking in his design.
I would say that Fable, if you took the evil options, turned you into one ugly SOB. But i felt it wasn't very intentional, the design was supposed to be cool looking, but i felt it was just very ugly.

OT : I truly don't mind. The characters looks need to be defined in the story though. I wouldn't like playing a game, like in mass effect, where you can turn your character into an ugly mess while he still has inexplicable sex appeal. If the story around the character tells me he is ugly and the story works with that, then I really don't mind. Can't think of an example.
 

Andy Shandy

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I wouldn't play the game just because the main character was ugly, but yeah, I would. I'd have to be pretty shallow to be turned off of a game by the relative attractiveness of the main character.

As for the character creator point, I imagine that's because many people are trying to recreate what they'd want themselves to look like (with the tools at their disposal).
 

AT God

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I have no problem playing as "ugly" characters. The fact that I haven't had the opportunity to very often makes it hard to understand what the appeal is but I don't think I would mind it. My main thought is maybe to have that be part of the idea, like have play as an ugly character in a game where the content is distasteful, like if Trevor in GTAV was some elephant man type person. Then again, I think it would be more interesting to play a game where you are some sort of dashing, roguish character who is also unattractive. Like those PS2 era James Bond games where he would hit on every female character, do that except hes also not very attractive. Extra intriguing if they still go along with it and act like the women in Bond movies do.

Can't think of any examples or ideas for playing as an ugly female character. If more games had female characters I might have a better idea.

Also, I want Hatred to have a fat internet nerd protagonist instead of some weird looking humanoid thing who reminds me of Death from Darksiders 2. And I can make that request because I am a fat internet nerd.
 

Yopaz

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This is the time when you would have to look at my Saints Row characters.

Saints Row is one of the few games where I care about character customization (weird considering the number of RPGs I have played) and I always take great care making the character as ugly as possible. I don't care if it's a man or a woman, as long as I am hideous as fuck I am pleased. Granted, it is mainly for laughs, but I keep it like that throughout the entire game, but sometimes switch it up a little.

For games without character customization I don't care how the main character looks. It's not like I am attracted to video game characters now am I particularly repulsed by them either. I don't really care that much about looks in media because I don't have any relation to them.
 

Dedtoo

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Honestly, yes. Because I'd rather play as someone memorable rather than ruggedly handsome, brown haired person #61763. It might have to do with me wanting to play as an average human in most games where there's an option. If it's a fantasy game with plenty of races, I don't want to be forced to play as the Humans. Preferably, I'd prefer not to play any of "The Trio of Good", Humans, Elves or Dwarves.

To take the World of Warcraft example, even if I didn't play it all that much: My favorite race was possibly the Goblins or the Forsaken, as they stood out a bit. They looked interesting. And they weren't just humans with a different skin color and pointy ears!
 

Islandbuffilo

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The only instance I can think of is the Nosferatu from VTMB. Other than that it's usually very briefly for comedic purposes. I mean looks usually don't effect my perception of the character alone, its usually their personality, and how it complements their looks.
 

CommanderZx2

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I play games to immerse myself in the fantasy and relax away from the dullness and ugliness of reality, unless that is the point of the game. So I enjoy having perfect super human characters both female and male.
 

Scarim Coral

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Yes but only to offset the amount of sexy characters (both male and female) we have in a game.
 

Delock

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You mean like with Soul Sacrifice after you've begun sacrificing a lot and you see a lot of visible corruption. The promo art makes it look like you're gonna go full body horror, but sadly unless you turn go chaos mode this doesn't really happen too much.

Btw, my answer is yes because it really worked into a nice little touch on that game where your power is clearly coming at a cost. (For an example of this in a game that was more played, look over at Demon's/Dark Souls where there was some risk to being your pretty self while your hideous other form was less powerful but less likely to cost you, and that was a fun balance that worked nicely with its lore)

Also, playing as a zombie is always a trip in games.

But I need to make the caveat that I love well designed ugly, rather than what happens due to Bioware's terrible lighting and angles in their character creators. Those are "mistake ugly" and I can never love them.
 

Lufia Erim

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Not really. Of course i'm sure a lot of people would say yes to not appear shallow, most people ,in my opinion, if they had a choice between two characters , whose story played exatly the same and had no influence on plot or gameplay , would choose the better looking one. Not that all of then would admit it.

As for me. Beautiful characters all the way. If i wanted to see ugly people, i'd look out the window , or at a mirror.