So how can roleplayers enhance their character with an accent that doesn't leave the other players rolling around on the floor? Here are a few tips to creating a basic accent for your latest Character.
- Pick a famous person with an accent and focus on imitating them. Mimicry is actually a universal talent, it just takes a little practice. Unless you are very very good (in which case you need to change your job) nobody will know who you are imitating.
- Another approach is to try using Dialect to mimic an accent. For example using 'Aye' instead of 'Yes' or 'Och' as an exclamation of surprise to simulate a Scottish accent. Using the odd word like this makes it seem like your using an accent when your not. But beware of stereotypes.
- Change the pitch of your voice. Higher or lower. It'll sound different from normal and will stand out as an accent in its own right.
- Change some letters in the words you pronounce. Russian for instance can be simulated by deepening the voice and replacing the strong V's with W's... so Vodka becomes Woodka.
- To create a disciplined, Teutonic accent (German) you do the opposite and replace the W's with the V sound, so. Welcome would become Velcome for instance. Also replace the Th sound with the D sound so Thank You would become Dank You.
- Sometimes not saying anything is an accent in itself. Our gaming group had a rather thick Half-Orc character that said little, and when he did it was monosyllabic. I always considered that Character to have an accent, although nothing formal was used.
- Use the Internet. It always helps when trying to recreate a dialect or accent to hear it for real. Use YouTube and other sites to listen to the accent you are trying to develop.
- Getting an accent perfect isn't as important as making your character distinctive. If you remain consistent in your approach, even if you only apply a subtle touch or phrase, you will create a successful persona for your character that will be memorable.