Frequently Asked Questions
If you have a question that isn't answered here, let me know using the contact form below, or contact me via Facebook or Twitter.
Can I use the results of this generator in my work/game/art?
Certainly! Feel free to use the results however you like. You don't need to give credit, but do let other know about RanGen if they could also make use of the Gens! Also, I'm always interested to see what people do with the results, so let me know about your writing, games and art; I'd love to check them out.
How many people work on the site?
I'm the only one who runs the site, from creating and updating the Gens, to posting on the site and social media; there's no team of people here. Just lil' ol' me. This is important to bear in mind when it comes to the timescale for creating Gens and making changes. I can only work on things when life/work allows, so things may be slow at times.
Do you work on RanGen full time?
No, unfortunately. I'm not able to put as much time into working on RanGen as I'm like. I still have to prioritise my actual work and Life™ over the site, so there are times when I have put RanGen to the side wile I focus on other more pressing matters. Ideally I would like to focus on RanGen on a consistent part-time basis; I'm not sure if I would survive doing RanGen full time (though I could dream!).
Can you make an *insert object here* generator?
More than likely yes! Just give me a shout using the contact form at the bottom of the site, or on Facebook or Twitter and let me know what your suggestions are. If it’s something I could actually do, and something that seems viable, I'll put it on my to-do list. The list of Generators I want to make is actually quite large, so there's a chance it's already on there; it's just a case of when I can get around to it!
Can you give us the option to control *Specific fine-tuned detail* in this generator?
Sometimes yes, but not always. Controls to change different categories of descriptions, the amount of results produced or to decide if optional features should be included or not are likely to be implemented if they're requested enough or make a lot of sense to have. Controls to alter specific details of the results, such as the option to decide eye colour or the specific height of a character will not be added. The Gen results are intended to be used as templates; use them as they are, or take the results and modify them until you're happy with it; no need to reject a description that would be perfect except the character's eyes are green; just manually change the description when you use it in your writing, art or game and away you go!
Can you make this generator produce images of the results?
Short answer; no. The point of these Gens is to spark the imagination so that you can come up with unique interpretations of the words. Even if everyone read the same description, everyone would imagine the object slightly (or vastly) differently, allowing for much more variety and creativity. If the results were to produce an image, it would immediately stunt a lot of that natural creativity, because it would present you with a rigid template that overrides the imagination and leaves a lasting impression, resulting in much less unique results. Aside from that, there are only so many images that the Gen could store, and only so many ways that a finite selection of images could be mixed and matched based on the results. Before long, people would complain about the limited selection available.
Long answer: absolutely not! It's practically impossible and would require a massive amount of time and effort to even attempt to pull that off! Using just a handful of images would not be sufficient; I would need to create a massive collection for it to be viable.
Using the Appearance Generator as an example, I would need to produce a single image for every type of eye, every type of nose, every type of lips, every face shape… Then, just one image of Type A eyes wouldn't be enough; we'd need a variation of that otherwise the chances of getting the same face are much higher. Then we need a variety for Type B eyes, then Type C, and so on for all the eyes, and noses, and hair… Just drawing three variations of each type of feature would result in hundreds of images. But then, suppose the way that I interpret a particular nose shape is different to how it actually is irl, or how the user interprets it? Now we have a picture that looks inherently wrong to everyone else, but looks fine to me, or the other way around. And even then, the amount of options wouldn't be enough...
Then, there's the challenge of fitting all the unique parts together and having them fit seamlessly. Something like that would be much better suited to a video-game, and even then, most games these days use sliders that give the user much more control, rather than set images. For me to try and implement something like that here would completely shift the focus of the site onto something totally different; I'm trying to make comprehensive text-based descriptions, not a video game or image gallery. As cool as it would be to have a feature like that, it's not something I can offer here, so your best alternatives are to find another generator that offer the type of image results that you're looking for, draw the images yourself based on your results, or commission someone to draw it for you (pay artists for their work, folks!).