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Nikolai B.

Secret / Double / Concealed Identity

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Hello fellow survivors.

Today I would like to ask for your thoughts and advice on concealed identities and similar situations.

Disclaimer and due diligence: I speak fluent English, Russian and Hebrew, each with it's own distinct accent, with English being the most unauthentic, yet people claim I sound American.

I understand that matters of identity could be tricky in DayzSA, whether due to the way character creation is (not) handled and due to the nature of some groups, who would derive information from learning a characters name.

Enter the meta-complexity of a double identity.

 

Lets say I am held up on the road at gunpoint by local looking men who demand me to identify myself. Not wanting those men to know my name, I create a false identity and say my name is something it isn't. Let's say that due to the way direct chat works they are able to OOC determine my name is not what I claim it to be. Already this is has become a situation that can go very wrong IC and / or OOC.

 

So, clearly this is an undesirable situation. My question is, what would be a legitimate way of playing a character that is concealing it's identity? Would it be legitimate to have the characters name ingame, mechanically, be the false identity and the true identity be non-mechanical fluff? That sounds a bit unfair.

The other option is to name the Character with the true name but present oneself otherwise - which also is prone to OOC and misunderstandings.

 

Is there a common, accepted, acceptable, legitimate way to play a double-identity person?

 

My simple idea as a test-baloon for this case would be a CIA or other clandestine operative that can realistically mimic local accent, sent to provide coordination with local persons of interest of the USA (or whatever other country he is an operative of).

On one hand, I feel it would be unfair to foreigner-hunting groups if I were to "not give them a chance" to determine im actually a foreigner. On the other, Some people can actually master foreign tongues to the level of authentic accent and those peoples chances of survival seem pretty good to me.

Then again, there is something about all this that feels like I'm exploiting an RL trait I have and thus it is unfair to other players, again. I guess it could be said I am in a moral conundrum.

 

I guess the bottom line would be the question:

"Is the ability to swap accent to mask an identity acceptable / legitimate / fair, with or without regard to the ability of the player to "pull it off"?"

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if you can fool people into believing you're of a different ethnicity, more power to you. if they are unable to determine your actual origin without using OOC information but they RP knowing you're a foreigner then that's meta-gaming. you should be fine. just hope the people you RP with are at least semi-decent and will act naturally.

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It's an iffy thing, some people abuse the fact that you can't recognize faces and that it's hard to recognize most people's voices by switching the way they talk on a whim. 

Moody gave a good example when we talked once, started talking like an old man while playing his relatively young character. In game there's no way to tell his age except for the voice, there's no way to tell this was a man we were familiar with and looking for. And had we recognized it as him ooc, we would have to act on the assumption it was an alt. 

Moody then came to talk to us, feeling like it had been a bit unfair as there's no real way to recognize him except for the voice. 

 

So, while I see this as a character trait that is plausible it also abuses some of the limitations in the game. Like people switching accents on and off etc to make people doubt themselves because of the rules. 

 

Same goes with names, your characters real name should be used ooc, but ic you can call yourself whatever. If people meta game that, it's an issue. This however makes it harder to tell if you're on an alt, and thus you are likely to get away because of the rule armor +2 it provides and the ooc confusion that ensues. 

 

So while allowed its again, kind of cheap and cheesy. 

 

Is it a major issue? Not sure I'd go that far. 

Edited by Sasha

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This was an interesting read.

I'd like to add my input:

This type of roleplay is supposed to simulate - as much as possible - what one could do in real life right? So, whatever you roleplay should be realistic as possible.

So looking at this in a real life situation. (And for example's sake, you're character is named Bob.)

If you've never met, say, John from Greece then of course he'd be none the wiser to the identity of your character. However, if you met him again, he'd recognise you, as whatever name you told him, before you even spoke because he'd recognise you.

If you meet someone in real life and they know you as bob, and then don't see them for 2 months, they'd still remember you, no matter what you choose to call yourself or what accent you take on.

It's a good idea and I wouldn't want you to put limitations on how you roleplay so I would suggest a totally new outfit and a mask with glasses, maybe it would be reasonable. Anything is possible in games I guess.

 

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You can do whatever you want in terms of hiding your identity in-character (within the rules, like not changing your character's sex in the character editor). If you convince people, you convinced them, but you're still the same person behind the screen.

My character, for an example, could pretend to be Chernorussian if her life depended on it, as she has learned some of the language (being really good with languages herself). It wouldn't be a problem to pretend, but I would still have to follow general rules, and they could still uncover me.

I could also tell my friend OOC "Hey, man, my character's pretending to be someone they're not, so your character doesn't know." and they'd have to go with it without suspicion unless evidence appeared in-game.

 

EDIT: In regards to physical appearance not being recognizable in-game, I think we should all do our best to make our personalities/voices/dress-senses as personalized as possible. I know people who would recognize me in an instant in-game as soon as I opened my mouth because of my voice and/or clothing, blowing my cover. You can always try to find ways to replace your physical appearance with your personality, so whenever someone hears you they're like "Heyyy that's that guy".

Edited by XieAngel

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If I were to play a character who is hiding their true identity for some reason..

The name on the character page should always be the name that your character was born with. So if I was born with the name Theresa May, that would be on my character page. But if I wanted to hide my true identity, I would go around in-game saying my name is actually Megan Fox. You feel?

As for not being able to tell the physical difference in game, eh, that's iffy. Let's say we met in game and our characters have seen each other's faces in the past.
If you're wearing a mask, a bandana or a balaclava and you're putting on a fake accent, chances are I won't recognize you. But if I somehow manage to get that mask that's covering your face off, obviously I'll recognize you as I've seen your face before. Does that make sense?

Young people pretending to be old people, though? That's um.. kind of weird. I'd recommend being a bit cautious, as sometimes it might be seen as powergaming?

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I'm currently playing a character with a two identities and it's a lot of fun..  ( though I've stumbled at times.. ) I've left the role-play of it very subtle a sort of 'based on encounters' approach, while maintaining my character initiatives / story. 

 Her accent / voice / personality will change entirely as a necessity to stay under the radar... There is a Dominant persona ( the false version of herself ) and a secondary, which very few people have seen / know about. I really think it can be great, so long as it's not too extreme..

 I can also say I've tried changing clothes / changing travel patterns etc.. and it was interesting to me how drastically different each persona was approached, but! I feel like so long as you're hooked into your base story / character while playing either persona you should be alright.. ( though, believe it or not, from time to time I'll 'out' or drop hints about my own character to people - so that they can possibly figure things out too.. like accidentally dropping her accent or talk about something completely out of the blue that might make her seem a little suspicious.. ) 

I think the only time playing a character like this can really impede role-play, is if you're using your double identity for this: Railroading.. 

 

Railroading:

 

In gaming, the act of forcing a player to "choose to" do something they don't really want to in order to advance the plot according to the wishes or designs of the GM.

Thus, the player feels like they're being moved through a world (or plot) as if on 
train tracks, without any choice on where to go. (urban)
 
 
In this particular situation you'd be doing it to railroad other role-players into catering to your own story which isn't cool.  
Edited by Bounty

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