In Blacksad, the animals might look like they have been picked randomly but if we take a closer look we’ll see that they have a predominantly narrative purpose. They are a metaphor of the role they are going to play within the story. This enables us to recognize the character and even part of their story with just one look. It’s very important that the species chosen for the character give the players the ability to see it as part of the concept and give it special importance. The species of the character has to reflect what the player wants the rest to see in them. In the Blacksad comics, the chief of police, Hans Karup, is a polar bear that represents the purity of the animals of white fur, and his physical strength places him as the leader within his community. The pig that runs the Cypher Club represents the decadence of that club and the customers who frequently go there. Jake Ostiombe is a gorilla that represents strength and fierceness, which help him in the boxing matches he fights in. These examples prove the importance of choosing the right species because it defines the main idea of the character and the interactions it has in the story.
As a player, you’ll have to take time to make this decision. You’ll think about the abilities and qualities the species of your choosing has within the animal kingdom and make sure it suites the occupation and circumstance you have in mind for your character.
This way, you’ll be able to play any character you want from an ambitious dog detective to a naughty weasel journalist or a naive doe writer.