(1) The hero’s powers and playstyle
(2) The identification and association of the character from the comics or movies
(3) The hero’s personality
Personality is indeed a major factor in one’s decision to pick up and play a hero in this game. Unlike most MMOs, where your character is your own creation and infused with whatever personality you give it, in Marvel Heroes you’re assuming a preset role that comes with a backstory, one-liners, relationships with other heroes/villains, and a look.
Some people cannot stand to play certain characters because they really dislike that hero’s personality. I saw someone in supergroup chat the other night bag on Cyclops, not because his powers were weak, but because he’s an annoying arrogant jerk. It is hard to force yourself to play a character that you don’t actually like on a personal level.
Doctor Doom for me began as a character whose personality I disliked, but the more I’ve played him, the more his megalomania and over-the-top quotes charmed their way into my heart. Switching between him and Squirrel Girl feels like slipping on two radically different suits of personality, both enjoyable in their way. SG feels scrappy, upbeat, and cute while Doom looks down at the entire world and expects all to bow before him. How can the latter not inflate my ego as I play him?
As a side note, I’m always touched when one of his Doombots dies and says, “Doom will… avenge me!” Because Doom will. Doom is nothing if not loyal to those who serve him.
I was listening to a character play Hulk nearby and realized that, boy, I need to play him sooner or later for the quotes alone. Plus, my daughter ADORES Hulk and has oh-so-many questions about him and why his skin is green. She also got a “spider-hulk” action figure from a garage sale that she totes around everywhere. I did not think that the phrase “spider-hulk” would be uttered so much in our household, but such is the surprise of raising kids.
With Odin’s Bounty and MM lately, I’ve been fishing for loot to see if I could get any more summoning gear for Doom. Not much luck on that front apart from a unique that had +1 to summon powers, but I did snag one of these from ICP: