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What makes a game character relatable to you?

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After @The Blackangel revived a thread where I asked whether we prefer blank slate characters that we build from the ground up versus pre-established characters, I thought of more questions to ask.

Now I want to ask what makes a pre-established character relatable to you as a gamer?

Do you relate to a character or not based on demographic traits, i.e. age, sex, ethnicity, orientation, etc.? Do you relate to a character or not based on personality traits? Do you relate to a character or not based on similar life situations? Do you relate or not based on values?

For me, what makes a character relatable is all based on values, personality and situational factors. I don’t care what a character looks like or what their demographics are, though I know that a lot of people probably do. Mostly I just relate or not based on how a character responds to the events taking place around them.

Like the character I most instantly connected to in any video game is Booker DeWitt from BioShock Infinite. His reactions to Columbia were instantly easy to connect with, and even though I obviously have not had any life experiences remotely like his, I just “got” him.

What about you? What makes you relate to a character? And what factors are irrelevant to you when it comes to relating to a character?



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