Character Creation in APB
APB has aspirations beyond that of the traditional MMO. Yes, combat and tricking out your avatar with the latest gear is important, but APB encourages players to make distinctive reputations for themselves. That can be a tricky concept in most MMOs, especially when the troll standing next to you can double as a clone, right down to the hairstyle, face, and skin-tone.
APB skirts the issue of similarity with one of the most robust character-creation systems outside of Champions Online or Second Life (albeit with far less anatomically correct furries). While it’s unlikely that anyone will ever notice that your eyelashes are one millimeter longer than the stock avatar, every slider adjusted and option chosen helps to form an incredibly deep bond with your avatar.
After choosing to be a Criminal or Enforcer, and man or woman, character-creation offers eight main areas of customization; Body, Eyes, Face, Facial/body hair, Makeup, Hair, Scars, and Skin. Each of those categories contains further subcategories, such as the moles, veins, and wrinkles of skin. Even deeper, you can choose how numerous your moles are and dictate their prominence. Women also get a few extra options, including pelvic width and breast size/position. Don’t worry ladies, APB isn’t big on implants.
Let’s try out some options, beginning with the random avatar assigned.
As you probably noticed, not every avatar is going to look like a model from GQ or Cosmo. I decided to accentuate that fact by giving him a little bit of paunch, and just enough muscle to show that he means business. I didn’t want him to look like a waxed bodybuilder though, although that certainly is possible, so I slathered on the body hair.
The screenshot below is a good example of how in-depth character-creation can be. I went into the Face category to tinker with those sad, pouty lips. Although it’s difficult to read in the image, there are actually three sub-categories for lips alone. Going into Lip Attributes presents seven additional options for adjustments. I don’t know exactly what Cupid means, but as a sucker for customization, there is no such thing as overkill in my book.
Eyes was the next category on my list, and again, the options were almost stifling. I wasn’t kidding when I said that the length of eyelashes can be adjusted. If realism isn’t your thing, APB has you covered with cat-eyes, eyes without pupils, and all sorts of otherworldly configurations. And yes, *sigh* Twilight fans can make vampire eyes.
APB offers 30 hairstyles, from balding domes to puffy afros, sweeping locks and pigtails. As if you didn’t expect it already, many of the styles have sub-options that control the lengths of different layers. Check out the ridiculous hairstyle below.
After shortening a few layers in the back and lengthening a few in the front, I think I made a decent Yugi.
Makeup runs the gamut from realism to Halloweenish, so expect to see at least a few recreations of the Crow, Ledger’s Joker, and more than one juggalo running around the streets of San Paro. As you can see below, even guys can get in on the action.
Everything I’ve shown here represents a small fraction of what can be achieved with APB’s character-creation. There are simply too many categories, sub-categories, and options to run through one-by-one. If all this seems like too much to handle, APB also includes a basic character-creator with simplified tools, so it really does have everyone covered.
Check out a few more examples of some two-minute creations: