Charr: have I been cheated?
Another “guilt” post per se folks, good lord this seems to be a reoccurring theme on this blog at the present time. Got back into Guild Wars 2, and this time the flamethrower engineer has been mothballed in favour of the Charr warrior. Now there was a bit of skepticism at first with the Charr as generally in fantasy RPGs it is either Humans or Dwarves that spark the interest. However upon walking around the Black Citadel and realizing what a – in a rough manner – “mistake” it was to go human, the Charr race in Guild Wars 2 was suddenly given a second, rather enthusiastic, chance to show their quality.
The Charr are a race of feline creatures that exist in the Guild Wars universe: they are extremely militaristic (a major attraction point for someone such as I) and thrive on conflict – not so much in the Mandalorian sense where they absolutely must fight ALL the time. Their government is structured in a similar fashion to a military unit, and their society is built around the notion of cooperation and strength in order to achieve a common goal – win wars. The Charr are also the most technologically advanced race in the Guild Wars universe, mastering steam engines and gunpowder before either the typical Dwarves or Humans could, alongside manufacturing and industry. The Charr will therefore satisfy the type of gamer who is big into military/military-themed characters and/or societies: the Charr always look good in plate armour – sadly to the detriment of everything else though – and their racial skills are geared towards a war theme as well.
Now being a militaristic person, it was natural that the Charr race would eventually enter the radar and peak the interest. Prior to this however the reason why Humans were selected was because they were naturally relatable. Seeing how Humanity was doing in a universe like Guild Wars is part of the immersion factor, and being able to relate to a character in the most realistic manner possible brings the level of immersion to new heights. However it is a fantasy setting, and as such fantasy creatures like Dwarves and Charr should be given consideration as they do offer some attractive characteristics to which a player can relate to – though not in the more realistic sense of course. Having fun should be the key directive here however and not realism; this hard lesson was half-solidified yesterday when the level six Charr was re-visited.
Ultimately it was not a poor decision to go Human because it was within the interest of the said player to do so; yet it came as a surprise when the Human faction ended up only satisfying half of the player’s personality, leaving the other half to be swallowed up by the Charr. Who knew Charr would end up on the list of fantasy characters/factions that would display virtues of strength, honour, militarism, etc: to think that once upon a time only the Humans were seen as having such values, while Elves were the “pseudo-hippies” of the fantasy universes, and Dwarves were an after thought. Now Dwarves, Humans, and Charr comprise the list of races that peak the interest: sorry Elves you just do not satisfy the need for militarism as soldiering is not an Elvish pursuit, only a “side job.” Now if you will excuse this soldier, he has some duties to perform for the Legion before lights out at 2100; I’ll see you next time.