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  #1  
Old Aug 5th, 2011, 09:48 AM
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Roleplay Across the Gender Line

I make no secret of it, as a player i am Male. To lie about that is kinda creepy. However, here on DnDOG you'll notice that well more than half of my characters are Female.

Who else does this regularly, Roleplaying a gender different to their own? Have you ever encountered any complications or Criticisms? And what about DMing NPCs of a different gender? Does it differ between doing so as a DM and doing so as a player? How does it compare to playing a race that differs vastly to Humanity itself? I'm curious to hear a few thoughts on this.

For me, i don't really do it anywhere other than DnDOG and a few other places online. Its an opportunity to do something i could not bring my self to do in a tabletop game, staring another dude in the face and trying to talk from the point of a female character interested in his character, for example. Online you have anonymity, and that affords so much freedom and ability to detach a character from your real self in a way that i have trouble mustering at a gaming table.
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Old Aug 5th, 2011, 10:08 AM
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Personally, I play female characters more often just to understand what goes into their minds.
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Old Aug 5th, 2011, 11:13 AM
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I'm a guy who has had several female characters throughout the years. Unfortunately, I once had a very uncomfortable experience playing a female character in a V:tM chronicle. The other players were of the 'creepier than a group of serial killers' variety. Their characters continuously flirted at my character in-game. They even made lots of lascivious OOC comments, as well. Eventually, I got so uncomfortable that I retired the character.

Last edited by Stormhammer; Aug 5th, 2011 at 11:15 AM.
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Old Aug 5th, 2011, 02:39 PM
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I have payed countless female NPCs in the past. I guess I just don't linger over the gender jump I'm doing. Hopefully that lack of overthinking will at least give them an air of naturalness if not genuineness. As a PC, I've run a few. Typically, I don't linger over questions of sex, focusing on the game at hand.

I know a lot of male players will play their female PCs as lesbians so they can still hit on the girl characters. The result is less a true homosexual character but a guy with boobs. It's not very accurate or believable. That said, I occasionally play lesbians so I can hit on the female characters.

It is a bit difficult, if you want to develop serious depth of character. No matter how observant I may be (and in real life, I'm not very), I will never understand what it feels like for a girl (thanks, Madonna!). As such, it's hard to behave in a way that leaves the reader feeling like I've written a genuine female. Sometimes, I'll insert summaries of real-life experiences I've seen, heard, or... smelled?

I hope that my readers have at least found my girls at least passable. It's as much as I can hope for, and if I exceed that-- great!
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Old Aug 6th, 2011, 06:03 AM
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well, there's a wide spectrum of personalities for women. I somehow know that being a confidant for numerous girls across different age groups. there's just something about women that fascinates me... honestly, it's hard to differentiate a female lesbian from a bisexual one.
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Old Aug 10th, 2011, 01:06 PM
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Well... if you DM, you're running every non-PC character.

If that meant they were all male, it might be a difficult world to accept...
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Old Aug 10th, 2011, 03:02 PM
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I'm a woman and I play both male and female characters. IRL as well as on-line. I just enjoy different experiences and perspectives.
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Old Aug 12th, 2011, 06:54 PM
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I'm female, and occasionally I've been tempted to try it, but I haven't played a male character in DnD since I was a kid (probably fifteen the last time). I knew one female in university that always played a male character, and when I first met her I had a hard time remembering that her character was male since every other PC stuck to their own gender. However it wasn't odd, she played the characters well. I just don't think that I do justice to male characters.

On the other hand female characters that find other female characters attractive are fun, as well as characters that just plain flirt with everyone and find members of both gender attractive. I guess it's all just personal preference... I'm female and I happen to like playing females.
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Old Aug 15th, 2011, 04:07 AM
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You can write a lot of things which would be difficult to act, and that's to say nothing of magic. All told, I don't know how interested I still am in tabletop playing after discovering the storytelling capabilities of pbp. So - as a writer and a philosopher, I'd say it would be unnatural not to write from both perspectives. Humans come in male and female shapes, yes - but each of those shapes contains masculine and feminine aspects, blended in a variety of ratios yet ever present. You can write from an orc's perspective even though you're not an orc - why not a woman? They're not that different. I mean...er...
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Old Aug 15th, 2011, 11:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loki_ragnarock View Post
Well... if you DM, you're running every non-PC character.

If that meant they were all male, it might be a difficult world to accept...
I've never played a female character as a player for any length of time, but I regularly feature well-developed female NPCs in games I run, just about as often as I feature well-developed male characters. I would probably have no trouble running a female character semi-consistently, it just hasn't happened yet.

I'll admit I imagine it would be harder tabletop than PbP - I had a guy in one of my tabletop games build a female character after his (second) male one was eaten by a bear. Though of his five characters spanning two years it was the one that lived longest, the rest of his party unanimously voted him "restricted to males only" after she finally was hung for her crimes (that's actually what happened to the character). It wasn't that he played her the stereotypical horny-college-student-playing-a-chick way, it was just that he played the character... strangely, in a manner unsettling to the rest of the party. I think the stereotypical way would have been tolerated, even by the female subset of the gaming group.

It's far easier to run characters like yourself, so most of the time players are more comfortable playing their own gender, but I personally go with the philosophy of one of my good friends on this - if you're a good enough role-player and the gender of the character isn't integral to the character concept, you should be able to flip a coin, or as he called it, "roll the gender d2". Regrettably, I'm not quite that good yet, but I'd like to think I'm getting there.
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  #11  
Old Sep 5th, 2011, 08:23 PM
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I've never tried it before, but have made a male character for an upcoming PbP just to see if I can do it. Personally I don't have any real issues with players playing out of their own gender JUST AS LONG as they aren't doing so with a specific agenda to act out some mean gender stereotype, use their character in relation to characters of the opposite gender in order to make players of the same gender feel awkward, or for the sole purpose of interjecting unnecessary drama dynamics into the adventure party.

It must be remembered that until well into the Age of Reason, many theatres used male actors to play female roles because acting was not considered an appropriate career for a lady, and shows featuring women were not considered proper entertainment for gentlemen.
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Old Sep 15th, 2011, 06:51 AM
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When I first started gaming, it was in a group where I was the only real female. Some of them played women, and it never bothered any of them. But their groups tended to be more men than women, so I generally played my own gender.

On the flip side of this, my most recent campaign was in a group consisting of around half dozen or so women and only occasionaly a guy would show up. Nearly all of them played as women only, so I was usually their token male.

That said, I have also had a few straight male friends play gay characters, which I found refreshing (mostly). In one case it was because his girlfriend was so jealous she couldn't stand him flirting with any female other than her, even make believe ones. And another was in Shadowrun, and was disturbing and hilarious at the same time. He was a gay troll... serial killer... with the street name Skittles. o.O

Anyway, all this has led me to the conclusion (in my experience) that male gamers are more comfortable crossing those gender lines. Even if it is to play out those ridiculous lesbian fantasies :P

Last edited by lothvamp; Sep 15th, 2011 at 06:55 AM.
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Old Sep 15th, 2011, 01:47 PM
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I'm in the process of creating my third female character for the same game. But generally, when I create a character, it's because there's a particular story I want to tell with that character. And there are plenty of feminine stories just as there are plenty of male-oriented stories.

In the weird anonymity of PbP, I've noticed that when I play a female character in a game where not all the players know me, often-times I get confused for being female.

And oddly, I've experienced more than one occasion where a male's female character started flirting with my female character. I don't know if that's because of some subconscious desire to see two girls macking on each other, or if it's just an unfortunate pairing of a homosexual character and a heterosexual one, though.

I've also played at least one gay character, although as the only gnome in a mostly human party, his options for companionship were even more limited. Incidentally, that character is now the main focus of my novel.

I have noticed that I have a tendency, when creating female characters, to make them more emotional beings. I don't mean emotional in the sense of being whiny or overreacting when it's "that time of the span", but in the sense that the playstyle tends to focus more on the inner workings of that character's mind, their thoughts and feelings. My male characters aren't usually very introverted in terms of narrative.

There's one exception to that, but that's because he's an immortal character and I'm interested in what that means for a character's psyche.

Last edited by Aosaw; Sep 15th, 2011 at 01:50 PM.
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Old Sep 19th, 2011, 12:20 AM
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I have played a female character at a tabletop game. It wasn't what i planned on doing at first, but one of the players was playing a female character and mentioned that all the guys were hitting on him. I thought it would be funny to play a female character, but still hit on him. Still had a lot of fun playing that character, and really the whole gender thing was left alone for the most part.
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Old Sep 19th, 2011, 03:51 PM
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In a different game, I was playing my usual female character and had another player's male character constantly flirting with her. I had my character repeatedly tell his character to back off, and finally he (the player) approached me with some lengthy apology about making me uncomfortable and all that. I tried to explain that those sorts of things don't bother me in the least,..but my character, on the other hand, doesn't suffer fools lightly and she (a half orc street thug) will rip a PC's arms out if he lays one uninvited finger on her.

I swore after that if the silly flirtations continued, I would "out" my character in a relationship with one of the PC barmaids in the last town we adventured in.
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