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Author Topic: Advice/Thoughts/Experience Regarding LGBT PCs  (Read 982 times)

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Offline Veretrix

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Advice/Thoughts/Experience Regarding LGBT PCs
« on: August 17, 2015, 09:09:58 PM »
Hey everyone!

DISCLAIMER: Before I begin, I want to make it clear that I don't want any kind of flame war started here regarding sexual orientation or the like. I merely want to ask a few questions pertaining to something I'm considering doing for a character sometime in the future. With that out of the way, allow me to begin.

To begin, I am a straight white male, so I basically have absolutely no idea what it feels like to be a different gender/sexuality/race, etc. Regardless, it is for this reason that I want to play an LGBT character at some point in a roleplaying game, mainly BECAUSE that format allows me to become something that I am not in reality. So, I have a few questions regarding this.
Have you ever played an LGBT character?
How did you go about it?
Did sexuality improve and/or hinder the group's experience overall? Do you feel it could?
If you are anywhere in the LGBT spectrum, what are some real life experiences you have had that may be helpful when relating this to a roleplaying game?

Feel free to answer any or all of these questions.

Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Advice/Thoughts/Experience Regarding LGBT PCs
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2015, 12:00:16 AM »
1. I have played L, G, B and straight female characters as a straight white guy.
2. I did a little reading about the culture and put myself in their position, looking at the world from their perspective.
3. As a very small and very personal group, the sexuality improved the overall game, but I would not recommend it for larger, or more casual groups. It is something that is more suited for experienced or personal groups. There is really not much a point in playing someome of an alternate lifestyle unless that lifestyle is going to be explored, or is not going to be of some importance to the game.
" If the muse comes to your bedside, don’t tell her you’ll f?$! her later."- Allen Ginsberg

Offline EchoMirage

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Re: Advice/Thoughts/Experience Regarding LGBT PCs
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2015, 03:46:24 AM »
I think the worst way to approach this is to play a caricature. For example, the blatantly oversexualised bisexual female. Often, that's what young male role players go for, and it inevitably turns out as a farce. Unless you can pull it off, I wouldn't go for the flamboyant fabulous gay male either (if you can pull it off, it might be excellent - in a small familiar group of good role players). Dorian in Dragon Age III is a decently written gay male protagonist, on the fabulous side.

One thing I would take into account is how the society views LGBT people - the degree of acceptance, legislation, etc. In one society they may be persecuted, while in another, there may for example be a highly regarded priesthood of a gay god, of course accessible only to homosexual men.
A character from the former society may be very private about their sexuality - or overcompensate and become openly celebrant about it when away from home. Meanwhile, a character from a sexually open society may be nonchalant about their sexuality and think nothing of it.
Regardless of orientation, characters will seek the same things from their object of desire - love, sex, companionship, understanding, stability and support, family, entertainment, friendship - feel free to continue the list.

On a side note, sci-fi and fantasy offer an additional avenue to explore: characters can have non-standard genders due to magic or technology, or due to being of a non-human species, and may change from one gender to the other, with full biological functionality. This may happen willingly or unwillingly, providing for abundant plot devices.

But, as Scras said, all these are only meaningful if they are going to be explored, as plot devices and character development.
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Offline Aramax

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Re: Advice/Thoughts/Experience Regarding LGBT PCs
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2015, 09:00:12 AM »
I played a Bi-sexual Male Barbarian and with it IFL picked up a female gamer at the table. lol
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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Advice/Thoughts/Experience Regarding LGBT PCs
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2015, 10:39:31 AM »
I think the worst way to approach this is to play a caricature. For example, the blatantly oversexualised bisexual female. Often, that's what young male role players go for, and it inevitably turns out as a farce. Unless you can pull it off, I wouldn't go for the flamboyant fabulous gay male either (if you can pull it off, it might be excellent - in a small familiar group of good role players).

In my exploration of alt lifestyle characters, I have basically run roughshod over the caricatures and while they seem fun at first, they eventually revealed themselves to be hollow. This can be worked out two ways: realize the caricature and move on, or make that hollowness part of the character. My first bi female character ended up branching out into two different characters from this. One was bi and very sexually reserved, rarely dating, and remaining emotionally distant, while the other was basically the oversexualized trope, but it was not because sex is hawt, but because she was very emotionally damaged, and sought out approval from the people she had sex with. This also came with serious self loathing issues, vanity, and drug and alcohol abuse problems.
" If the muse comes to your bedside, don’t tell her you’ll f?$! her later."- Allen Ginsberg