Party creation refers to creating the party of player characters who will have adventures together. It is like character creation, but takes into account the choices made by the entire group, not just one player.
Party creation may be done as part of session zero.
Character creation and balance
Each role-playing game has its own way of balancing characters against each other. These strategies can be roughly categorized as:
- Mechanistic balance: The characters have similar statistics, the same point totals, equivalent level, and so forth.
- Niche protection: Each character is important because they can do something no other PC can do.
- Dramatic potential: Each character is important because they have different backgrounds, goals, and personalities.
Character creation and party unity
Characters in a party are normally cooperative or intimately rivalrous. Forces that can bring a party together include:
- One character has a starring role and the other characters are his entourage
- The characters face a common threat and must cooperate to survive
- The characters are from a similar background or have similar superficial interests
- The characters are relatives
- The characters have the same employer or commander
Character creation and spotlight time
One important consideration is how much each player gets to contribute to a session. Even if the party is balanced, and the party works in a cooperative or dramatically interesting way, it is unfortunate if one player dominates play, doing the most talking, the most decision making, or perhaps the most problem-solving, to the detriment of the involment of other players.