WHAT AGE RANGE ARE THE CHARACTERS IN YOUR GAMES?

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Though I make games, at my heart I'm a writer. And looking over all my notes and story ideas I've written down over the years one thing I've noticed is that the ages of my main characters has increased over the years. When I first started writing, all my main characters were spunky teenagers, but as I've gotten older I've grown to favour the old jaded veteran archetype.

And it got me thinking: What age range for your main characters do you prefer, and why?
If it's a bigger cast, I prefer to write the average age to be 26-32, usually with only one person teenage or less. Smaller cast really depends on the story.
Mirak
Stand back. Artist at work. I paint with enthusiasm if not with talent.
8823
Yeah, it really depends on the story, but i'm in favor of including bearded wizards and elderly sort of characters in my own stories.
Cap_H
DIGITAL IDENTITY CRISIS
6615
It depends. I rarely work with a large or diverse cast. My main project has a party of three vicious criminals in their late 30s, a younger Huntress accompanying them, an immortal god. My other project is about a lady, she's roughly 50 yo. My third project is about a potato, maybe 17 yo.
More often than not age's not really defining in my games. It's more about experience and roles (mother, elder, potato).
Undetermined, usually.

In Oracle of Tao, I think Ambrosia are in their early 20s before a nine-year time skip. Their friends are also of age for drinking and such. Aqorm is over a thousand, if the novel version is any guide. Tamashii is nine.

In Tales from the Reaper, the Reapers are as old as existence itself.

Otherwise, yeah, I guess 18+.
In the two things I'm working on, for main party only:

Project 1: 21-50ish
Project 2: 18-72

I prefer to work with a tight group of ages and some further outliers. I don't write characters that are underage in the main party usually since it doesn't make much sense for the types of games I make. I definitely like to make the characters older than the JRPG standard, and try to include seniors if at all possible- cause everyone likes battle grandmas
pianotm
The TM is for Totally Magical.
27719
So...From the Swap event:

The Vindicators: Angela Rind and Jack Stallion - early 30s.
Shackled Seas: Kit, I'm not sure what Fomar envisioned, but I always figured Kit was late teens, early twenties, with Ronnie and Enzo being in mid to late twenties and Senan being early to mid thirties. Aurelia was conceived by Fomar, but I was ultimately the one that created her character and she was late thirties, early forties. Danika was mid to late thirties.

Twisted Fairy Tales event: Ella is 16. Ariel and Esther appear 17 and 18 respectively, and Gwendoline appears 39 or 40.

Vega Legacy: Tayla is 17. Marsha Caspien looks 35ish, is really in her 80s due to hyper advanced anti-geriatric drugs. Tayla's sister, Kiernan, is 26.

Grimm Investigation: All protags and NPC are 30ish.

Dreams of Jade: All protags are mid 20s. Villain is late 30s.

Frozen Ember: All protags are 16 and 17. Antagonist (The story doesn't have a real villain) is 17, and the main antagonist looks 30s but is actually much older due to a plot device similar to the one in Vega Legacy. Frozen Ember is only a snippet of a book, also. The game is essentially proof of concept.

Isolation: Gia is early 30s.

Loop's Quest: Protag is 15 because this was the trope game, meaning it deliberately followed RPG tropes, underaged protags being one such trope.

Mechanima: Character was a machine made to look like a 14-year-old girl.

Quest of Lost Memories: This had deliberate coming-of-age elements, so the protag is specifically 21.

That covers the ones I gave real thought to.
kentona
I am tired of Earth. These people. I am tired of being caught in the tangle of their lives.
20742
never younger than 18.
Measuring playables only:

Brave Hero Yuusha: The hero is the only character with a canon age: 17. Demon Lord and Princess are implied to be young adults and see the protagonist as a "kid."
Soma Spirits: Heart and Soul's ages are never stated. But they are twins, implied to be young adults (18-21-ish)
Crescent Prism: Chapter 1 : 10-29, Chapter 2 onward: 20-39.
Dyluck
For thousands of years, I laid dormant. Who has disturbed my slumber?
4682
I didn't write down an official age anywhere, but I always imagined them something like this in Legends Of Illarion 2:

Moshran: 26
Elara: 24
Adron: 21
Sirani: 71 (elf)
Irmorom: 38 (dwarf)
Oldra: 48 (halfling)
Malachin: 46
Zhambra: 139 (elf)
Nargun: 28
Cherga: 33
Ronagan: 30
Petranor: 25
Sooz
They told me I was mad when I said I was going to create a spidertable. Who’s laughing now!!!
5177
Ambiguously Adult, mostly.
Decky
I'm a dog pirate
19517
kids from 1 to 92
Solitayre
Circumstance penalty for being the bard.
18257
Young adulthood (17-24ish) tends to be a dynamic time in peoples' lives where they're figuring out who they are, forging important relationships, falling in love, and heading out on their own for maybe the first time, but haven't made lifelong commitments to anything yet and have freedom to move around and try new things. It makes sense from a 'Hero's journey' perspective for a protagonist and their coterie to be around that age.

Being in my thirties myself now I understand that only young adults really have the latitude and the endurance to head off on world-spanning adventures presented in RPG or adventure games.

For more drama-focused pieces, characters of any age can work.
pianotm
The TM is for Totally Magical.
27719
Right? I can barely go on a neighborhood spanning adventure.
LockeZ
I'd really like to get rid of LockeZ. His play style is way too unpredictable. He's always like this too. If he ran a country, he'd just kill and imprison people at random until crime stopped.
5478
I tend to make my games' main protagonists be in their 30s or 40s because I like them to already be extraordinarily competent when the game starts. And I feel like that's the age when it's reasonable for them to already have a solid amount of experience. Solid Snake, Jack Bauer, James Bond, Duke Nukem, Master Chief, Xena, John McClane, Batman - these characters are the kind of hard-boiled action hero persona I'm often trying to evoke with my main protagonists. And they just don't work the same way if they're 15 or 20 year olds.

I also like the main characters to have spouses, so they can die in tragic backstories, and kids, so they can get kidnapped.

However, that's just the main protagonist. The rest of the party? Anywhere from 6 to 120, or older if they're not human.

I mostly seem to naturally trend toward the party being similar ages to each other, because in my brain that makes the most sense if they're all working together. Like, for the group to function smoothly and them all to contribute equally, they should all be roughly equal in ability, and also in rank if they're part of any kind of organization.

But despite the fact that I think that usually makes the most sense, I also make a conscious effort to add characters of other ages, especially younger ones, in order to have a wider variety of characters who will appeal to a wider audience.
Marrend
Guardian of the Description Thread
20053
My characters seem to generally fall between teenagers and young adults. I only ever had one "child" character, except she was more of a billion-year-old-trapped-in-a-child's-body deal. Old folks, I suppose I have a spattering of them here and there?
Sooz
They told me I was mad when I said I was going to create a spidertable. Who’s laughing now!!!
5177
author=Solitayre
Being in my thirties myself now I understand that only young adults really have the latitude and the endurance to head off on world-spanning adventures presented in RPG or adventure games.


With exceptions for people who make that kind of thing their career, or are otherwise trained/prepared to do the stuff.
I've mapped ages all over the place.

There were 2 main characters (out of 4) that were in their 60s.

Then there was a character that was 0—a bug that was just born.
pianotm
The TM is for Totally Magical.
27719
Sooz
With exceptions for people who make that kind of thing their career, or are otherwise trained/prepared to do the stuff.


Yeah, this is true enough, but I think most people are talking about the multitude of games where the world spanning hero is Joe or Jane Everybody.
Sooz
They told me I was mad when I said I was going to create a spidertable. Who’s laughing now!!!
5177
author=pianotm
Sooz
With exceptions for people who make that kind of thing their career, or are otherwise trained/prepared to do the stuff.
Yeah, this is true enough, but I think most people are talking about the multitude of games where the world spanning hero is Joe or Jane Everybody.


I mean, even in those cases, I don't think most late teens/early twenties people would actually have it in them to Go On A Heroic Journey, so that's hardly an excuse.
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