Does my app need to have a main character?

JagonAppsJagonApps Member Posts: 241
I have designed the basics o my app, now for the design work. But should I invent some cute little insect or alien to centre in it, or will my app have enough originality to stand out anyway? My app is a puzzle game, (very) roughly based on Tshirtbooth's template shown here:



  • Mr HansonMr Hanson Member Posts: 94
    Hello @JagonApps

    In my opinion you don't need a cute main character, a lot of word and puzzle games don't, except for cut the rope. However a Main character adds atmosphere into the game and makes the game more enjoyable and memorable. Judging from the stle of game you are going for, a main cute character could work but as it may not be a big part in the game, it may not mean much. But there is really no harm in adding one as long as it fits into the game in the right way. Eg not having an ant game and then adding a random cute fox to the game which had nothing to do with it.

    My overall opinion would be that if you think it will make your game better, go for it, other wise don't stress because not all games need a main character if the rest is done good. My new big game does not have a main characters at all because it is a puzzle but the rest of the environments makes up for not having one.

    All the best
  • The_Gamesalad_GuruThe_Gamesalad_Guru Member Posts: 9,914
    edited September 2012
    It's important to follow the elements of story telling when entertaining people. I would advise reading up on the structure and elements of story telling. Much of the structure of story telling have been around for centuries begining with Aristotle's Poetics.
  • SlickZeroSlickZero Houston, TexasMember, Sous Chef Posts: 2,870
    All instincts tell me to say "Yes, you need a main character, even if it's an object and not a person" but then again, if you can make a great and fun and engaging game, you really don't have to have a main character. Look at how successful Tetris was.

    Although, the blocks themselves could be considered characters since everybody remembers every shape that came down that screen, and everybody had a favorite shape. So in a way, it did have characters.

    Good question, and a tough call, but I think I'm going with the final answer of "Yes", you probably should incorporate some type of main character.
  • TesseractEngineTesseractEngine Member Posts: 180
    Characters are a great hook, but as @FryingBaconStudios points out, if you are going to focus on a character, you then have to follow through with that method, and make the game tell a story about that character.

    That story doesn't have to be terribly accomplished in its own right, but it does need some kind of narrative. One that - in the best examples - informs the gameplay, rather than just being a cosmetic layer on top of it.
  • JagonAppsJagonApps Member Posts: 241
    Many thanks to all who commented I have read all of your ideas and I will look into it in more detail and do some research in the areas you suggested.


  • RPRP Member Posts: 1,990
    I agree on with what Fry points out here. If you don't go with a character make sure that you carry out your theme throughout the whole game. The story, sounds, music, gameplay and visuals will coalesce into its own character (so to speak).
  • The_Gamesalad_GuruThe_Gamesalad_Guru Member Posts: 9,914
    edited September 2012
    As a screenwriter I was taught a story can be as little as one sentence or even one word depending on how clever one is. But all stories should have a beginning middle and ending. Here is an example. Jimmy left his house, (beginning) crossed the street to Mr Williams candy store( middle) and bought a pack of gum (end). It's not a gripping tale but it shows what a complete story is. Now the process of conceiving interesting stories and ideas requires a clever mind that understands story and character.
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