I recently posted a blog
about the relation between the gamer and your character, and the single comment I received mentioned that I seemed to be building toward something, but didn't really reach my conclusion.
To be honest, I was writing from my train of thoughts, and didn't really know where I was going with it.
A possible conclusion came to me when I was playing Fallout 3. My current character is pretty much evil by now, and I have finished all add-ons except Broken Steel. The Enclave had just appeared, and it seems like my character needs the closure she deserves.
It came to me after a conversation with the character's father in the Project Purity lab, where my character was confronted about the destruction of Megaton
. This was the first time I made the decision to destroy Megaton in all playthroughs, and the confrontation took me off-guard. The conversation was postponed in favor of more pressing matters, brought forth in the form of having to provide the lab with the resources it required. While I was going around doing my thing, the Enclave appeared, and not noticing me, stormed the lab.
The military force confronted my character's father, and he ended up sacrificing his life to take them down. Through heavily enforced glass, I could see him looking straight at me, and repeatedly telling me to get out of there.
So there it was: Closure. My character started off by escaping from Vault 101 to search for her father, who left without a trace. Here he was, shortly after being found and "saved" from the mess he got himself into, sacrificing himself so a terrible military organization wouldn't get their hands of a critical experiment. In a sense, he has redeemed himself.
So what is left for my character? After going to the Pitt, Point Lookout, the Anchorage simulation, and even Mothership Zeta, all that's left is to take the fight to the Enclave.
I figured out what my character needed: redemption. As much as I enjoy playing a villain in video games, I enjoy the story of a villain's redemption. It would be a nice, heartwarming conclusion for my character's story.
Today I have decided to take it one step further: After finishing the game, I would be parting with a character I spent a lot of time with. As much as I like to see closure, I find myself getting drawn to an interesting idea: Recreating the character in New Vegas. It takes place three years after Fallout 3, so it just feels like it fits.
The conclusion I have arrived at is this: We all find ourselves influenced in varying degrees by our in-game characters. After the game is over, and the controllers are put down, it's the characters with the greatest resonance, mentally and emotionally, that you will eventually revisit. It is just as much about the journey as it is about going out with a bang and leaving you, the player, craving for more.
A final question, for the commenters: Would you recreate the same characters, if you could, in different games that have a character creation feature? Would you focus more on recreating skills, personality traits or physical appearance?