Have you ever heard the term "murderhobo"? It's casually thrown around in the tabletop gaming community as a negative example of what most parties of adventurers really are. Wandering packs of the homeless, thoughtlessly murdering everything in their path and knowing no home. I mean most players feel that their characters are only a duster away from being the epitome of the "man with no name" (Or hakama pants if you're into Kurosawa), but in the end they really do end up becoming that murderhobo archetype.
So now you're probably wondering what I'm rambling about, and I promise there's a point to this. While I was replaying Skyrim last week I stopped to think about murder hobos after being given my eleventy-billionth piece of land from lord such and such; why did they keep giving me lands and titles? Was it because they feared I might dragon shout them for their houses? Then it hit me like my fireballs had hit all those unsuspecting guards, the game was going out of its way to keep me from becoming a murderhobo, they were trying to strip me of that moment of pride with my character.
Is it a bad thing to be a murderhobo? Well in reality it is, they have no 401K and the future job opportunities are mostly in serial killing and prison, but in the fantasy realm murderhobos have much better options. Han Solo, Gordan Freeman, Conan, sure those guys appeared to have jobs, but did you ever see Han smuggle, Gordon science, or Conan do whatever the future king of a glorious kingdom does? Nope, all the time we're following them they're blasting/crowbarring/Croming their way through people for their things. Robin Hood was into it too, and don't think that living in Sherwood Forest exempts him from his hobo status, you need to be able to atleast receive registered mail.
So next time you run into the thought that a character should be dismissed because they just mindlessly kill people for their stuff, think back to these proud heroes. Though then take the step to look at them objectively, because sometimes a man willing to stab you with a sharpened spoon for a can of beans really is just a murderous hobo, I'm looking at you DayZ.
-Rob Howell is a gaming culture and communications writer, you can find the first stream of gaming conciousness here and find Rob on twitter @Robhowelllive, though he's boring as hell on there.