- Just posted at sister site Gamasutra yesterday is the feature 'The Everyman and the Action Hero: Building a Better Player Character' by Iron Lore's Ben Schneider, who most recently worked on the rather mythological Titan Quest, and has also labored over games for Harmonix and Stainless Steel Studios.

It seems that Schneider has some genuinely well thought-out comments on character crafting: "Working from the template of the everyman and the action hero can help you achieve buy-in from the player, but it’ll take more than that to make your player character something special. In fact, making your protagonist safe is really directly at odds with making him or her original, evocative, or lifelike. There is a vital arm-wrestling match that goes on here between all those limitations and the creative goal of making a really good, memorable character."

Another intriguing point explored in the piece: "Most game developers do a pretty good job of finding that action hero/everyman sweet-spot, but far fewer take the time to make more out of the hero or find a compelling, striking way to introduce them. God of War, Max Payne, and Grand Theft Auto 3 (and 4, it appears!) stand out in this regard, simply for properly setting up the beginning of the game, even, in Max Payne’s and GTA’s cases, if the setup is a pastiche of pulp fiction clichés."