[Suggestion] Player character as forum avatar — Guild Wars 2 Forums

[Suggestion] Player character as forum avatar

Mikuchan.7261Mikuchan.7261 Member ✭✭✭
edited September 17, 2017 in Guild Wars 2 Discussion

The forum avatars are currently very non-personal and you really have to look at the name to recognize who is writing a post.
Not necessarily a big problem, but it's a bit boring.
It can be understandable if ANet doesn't want to host avatars that people upload. It can be a security risk and it can be messy and it can lead to them not getting the visual theme they want on the forum and other things.
But I have a suggestion for a solution.

An avatar generator would be a nice solution to all this.
It that takes the current equipment and style of a character you pick from your account.
It poses it and generates an image file out of it that is used on the forum.
At a start, to get the system rolling faster, it could be a standard pose. As time goes on, more poses could be added to the system for more variation.

The generator could update the avatar automatically as a settable option for more flavor once a day or so, if equipment or style has changed.
This could happen at a time when the servers are less busy and not in as much use anyways or as part of server maintenance.
For some, it could be preferred to have more consistent avatars, to recognize them more easily.
But it'd be the same character unless the user swaps to another one, so it'd still be fairly consistent.
Users can swap avatars whenever they want anyways (potentially with some restriction to put less strain on the servers), so I feel it wouldn't be a problem if you leave it as an option for those that want it.

The current non-personal avatars would still be an option if you don't want to use your character.
And I'm sure ANet would add more of those as well.

This way everybody wins.
ANet gets safe avatars and get to control the visuals of the forum and users get custom avatars, look unique and the forum becomes more personal and homey.
It could give more of a feel that the characters from the game come to the forum to have a discussion as well.


  • Avatars do inevitably become a form of association or recognition between forum members, so I do agree with the idea that we need more avatar variety, especially in the scope of character or creature art. This would make it easier to differentiate between posters at a glance, because as things are now, having multiple players in the same class forum all share the same avatars does make things difficult in this regard.

    That being said, the technology required for your suggestion may simply not be built into the forums in their current (new) iteration, and adding such a feature, where avatars are based on and updated from in-game player characters, might be a bigger request than people realize. I would love it personally, but I wouldn't be surprised if it doesn't happen in the near future.

  • Mikuchan.7261Mikuchan.7261 Member ✭✭✭
    edited September 18, 2017

    I forgot to mention, but the functionality to generate avatars for the characters is already there.
    They do it for the thumbnails in the character select screen.
    Given that those don't seem to come out when requesting character info from the API as far as I remember, they're probably done so client side.
    Of course I don't know the extent of work it'd take to modify that to spit out avatars on request for the forum.
    But it can most certainly be done.

    Edit (some text removed, below added):
    I've come to understand that the forum used is Vanilla Forums.
    They do have functionality to provide avatar images via SSO according to their feature list.
    So that might be a way to implement the system if you then set the avatar via the ANet account.
    Alternatively if the forums have some other way of setting avatars from ANet's side or if the feature can otherwise be requested.

  • Rockstar Social Club uses this system, it's an effective way to allow users to express themselves in their avatar, without needing to be vetted.

    You stand to benefit more from making friends than you do making enemies.

  • I would love to have a personalized avatar, such as one of my characters. They have that on the WoW forum. Surely this brand new forum could do that.

    Be careful what you ask for
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  • sephiroth.4217sephiroth.4217 Member ✭✭✭✭

    It would be great to have a little picture of my main character as an avatar.

    Not to brag, but I put together a puzzle in 4 days and the box said 2-4 years.
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  • Samnang.1879Samnang.1879 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I support this idea. Make forums great again.

    Anet: give us in-game customizable human NPC companion please
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  • This is something I had actually been thinking about.

    Would be nice to have our main as the avatar. It's just a matter of if anet considers it too much of a hassle to implement (would be really cool though!).

  • Orpheal.8263Orpheal.8263 Member ✭✭✭
    edited September 18, 2017

    We should be able to take Ingame from Character Selection "Photos" of our characters, where we can put the faces of them into various angles, until we hae the pose we want.
    After having made the Photo of our characters ingame from the character select menu, we should be able to upload the photo, that is now linked to our account by logging into the forum here, so that we can use it here as an Avatar, where we can then eventually also decide how we put our Photon into one of various kinds of "Frames".. you know like Veteran, Elite, Champion, Legendary (those would be earnable here by Forum Rank), but there could be naturally also some other common ones to choose from, which dotn need to be earned... cause an avatar photo of a character without a frame is ugly ^^

    By this System I would make from Select Screen the nicest possible Portrait-Photo of my Main Character possible and would use it here as an Avatar that is then nicely framed :3

    It would be a safe system, because its just data created from ingame taken over to the forum. So this Avatar Generator could be basically implemented as "Photo Maker" in the Character Select Screen.
    PS: I also hope, this would allow us to have then slightly bigger avatars, these generic ones are simply to small, they are completely pixeled and unsharp.

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  • It would be nice if we could use a picture of 1 our character as avatar like in the wow forum.

  • Panda.1967Panda.1967 Member ✭✭✭

    I'd love to see one of my characters as my forum avatar.

    Please stop assuming I'm a male, I am female.

  • be nice if they took this out of the forums and just had our names only at best being subjected to others bad tastes in forum pics and so forth not good at all .

  • I really like this idea. It's like face/name association in real life. Most people are better at recognizing faces than names.

  • I agree! We should be allowed to have our Playable characters, for Forum Avatars, just like the Forum Moderators do.

  • I jumped the gun and chose an amazing screen shot from Ember Bay to upload as my characters avatar only to realize that you cant personalize your pic and have to choose from what is provided. These forums are personal in every other way. From vents and rants to praise and suggestions .... I found it very disappointing like many others. I would love to see this changed.

    When life knocks you down ... Rollover and look at the Stars

  • I mean, devs already have character avatars.

    Down with this oppresion! Equality for all!

  • Cronos.6532Cronos.6532 Member ✭✭✭

    The game already generates a static state of your character's head in some dialogues and when using certain items that show locations on the map., so they could use that existing system but make it so your character is facing right (to the post) instead of left. RuneScape forums have also had that photo booth feature for awhile.


  • @Wintermute.5408 said:
    I mean, devs already have character avatars.

    Down with this oppresion! Equality for all!

    devs should have their own character avatars that way you can tell they are game dev,s and forum mods and so forth . other wise if they did not how could you not tell a forum mod from a game dev ??? or have the forums mods and devs be impersonated by other members of said forums . I see it like this as I said in my other post I much rather have them remove this but keep it for game gev,s and forum mods . so we know the official word is really coming from them and not another player or something. and have it like the old forums where it just was our names only .

  • I'd say that big colorful banner is pretty distinctive for telling which are Official posts. Just like we had in the old forums.

  • @Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:
    I'd say that big colorful banner is pretty distinctive for telling which are Official posts. Just like we had in the old forums.

    while your right on that but I have noticed tho with the new forums . the devs and mods have seam to become more talkative . which I really like very much unlike in the old forums they hardly spoken a word even at all . so in many ways now with the new forums I seen some improvements their . and hope their is more to come in that form from them B) I think if they went back to the old way they go back to not talking at all again . leaving us like they did in the old forums to only wonder at best. personally that part for me I like a lot when the game devs and mods talk to us. as we do get good information from that way .

  • Zedek.8932Zedek.8932 Member ✭✭✭

    Why not? Ingame, there is already your face upon answering in the dialogue boxes.

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  • Having the upload directly from the game could be a neat idea.
    That could also bring more attention to the forum for normal players so that they'd get to know that it exists and that it's useful.
    It also potentially opens up for more options on how to do it and what could be done with it.

  • STIHL.2489STIHL.2489 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Mikuchan.7261 said:
    I forgot to mention, but the functionality to generate avatars for the characters is already there.
    They do it for the thumbnails in the character select screen.

    This is a really good idea, to be able to use one of my Character Thumbnails as my Avatar, that would be awesome!

    Ahem - I mean.. "Thumbs up"

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  • Alga.6498Alga.6498 Member ✭✭✭✭

    The mini-pets / miniature images from in-game would be a nice way to have profile pictures too.
    And there's alot of them and so many choices, and cool ones too! :)


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  • Rauderi.8706Rauderi.8706 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Alga.6498 said:
    The mini-pets / miniature images from in-game would be a nice way to have profile pictures too.
    And there's alot of them and so many choices, and cool ones too! :)


    That's a fanciful idea.

    ..until we get a legion of Mini Festive Lord Farens running around. :scream:

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  • Fenom.9457Fenom.9457 Member ✭✭✭✭

    You can't change your avatar until the old one dies!


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