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 The Knowledge (Role Playing tips)

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PostSubject: The Knowledge (Role Playing tips)   Sun Nov 28, 2010 7:07 pm

What is Role-playing?
n. 1. Action in which a person takes on a role and pretends or acts out being that character. ( taken from the "Wiktionary." )

In our context of the word role-playing, we mean that you create a character... and write out a story (from your character's view point) with another member, who has also created a character; they will be writing from their character's view point. Essentially, it is collaborative story writing. You take on the role of a character you have created and write out how they would act, think, and speak in certain situations.

Many post-by-post forum role-players in general use three different skill-level categories to partially define the skills of a fellow roleplayer (as well as their own) in order to get an idea of what sort of a poster they are. However, it should be noted that, though there are some common core ideas, the definitions of these skill levels can vary from site to site and even from person to person.

Many role-players are not strict about skill-levels and can play with people who are not the same skill-level as they are. These categories are to be used as a way of getting a basic idea of the average posts a fellow player makes, rather than as an excuse to look down at them. On the contrary, role-playing with people of higher skill levels can help you advance your skills in role-playing.

Here are the basic definitions of the three skill-levels:

beginner -- These are the people that have just begun to role play and are just getting the basics down. You probably have only created one character... and have had one or two role plays. A beginner is also more likely to write short posts, one to two paragraphs.

intermediate -- You have been role playing for a while. You have had many role plays, and think you have a good handle on grammar and you can probably write 100-200 words per post.

advanced/literate -- These two terms are used side-by-side. Many of the people who consider themselves advanced also call themselves "literate" role players. They've got a great handle on grammar and probably post around 300+ words per post.

What goes into a Role-playing Post?

Each post is supposed to further the plot in some way with your characters actions, thoughts and senses. Not all role play posts have to be action-packed; they should include more than just action. Mixtures of thoughts (usually expressed in italics, instead of quotations), actions, dialogue, descriptions of what your character sees, and their experiences will all make up a good post which will allow your partner(s) to have something to reply to, thus furthering the plot.

The most common way to write posts in a role-play on forums is in third person, past tense (i.e. John walked to the fire place and sat down). It is not a rule, but it is a general guideline and a preference of many. It is also preferred all player post in the same tense and from the same view point - this way it will be less confusing, and you can keep track of what has already happened and what the characters are doing now.

You also want to give your role playing partner(s) something to reply to. You should have your character interact with theirs, otherwise you'd have a large group of people gathered in one room to talk to themselves. You should attempt strike a balance between expressing your characters needs, feelings, and thoughts as well as interacting with the surrounding characters. After all, if you wanted to role play with just your character, you would be writing a short story.

What not to do in a Role-play

There are some things that should be avoided and are generally looked down upon by the role-playing community. Godmodding, metagaming, and powerplaying are three things to avoid.

  • Godmodding - Controlling other people's characters.

    For example: You play Ted and a fellow role-player plays Greg. You write that Ted throws a fireball at Greg and you write that this knocks out Greg. This is god-modding because you are acting out the reaction of the other player's character. The owner of the character should be the one to decide if the fireball knocks him out or not.

  • Metagaming - Using out-of-character knowledge to affect your in-character writing.

    For example: You know from a character sheet that your role-playing partner's character has had a dog for thirteen years. If you use that information in your role-play post even though your chracter shouldn't know about it, it an example of metagaming. If it is the first time meeting that character, yours won't know anything about the dog, or how old it is. Asking "How's your dog?" in idle conversation after first meeting the character would be metagaming.

  • Powerplaying - Changing in game rules to further your character, or to keep them from being hurt and to help them come out on the top of every situation.

    For example: Your character (Sam) and your partner's character (Lee) are sitting in the forest. They're just talking, when they decide to play with some magic. You both decided that magic comes from energy they gather from the earth. They soak up this energy over time and they can release it in small doses. You can only perform one spell every minute or so. For fun, they decide to spar. Sam stands on one side of the clearing, and Lee stands on the other. Sam uses their spell first. It's a fireball, albeit small. He tosses it toward Lee, who dodges it and turns it into ice. He stops the ice-ball in mid air and returns it to Sam, and it hits him. This was two spells in a matter of seconds... thus changing the pre-discussed rules of the magic world. Lee was powerplaying
Another thing to avoid is making a character that could be classified as a Mary-Sue or a Gary-Stu. These two terms mean a female or male character that is essentially perfect: usally, they have no flaws, a troubled past, and everyone likes them. Every character should have strengths and weaknesses as well as a mixture of a good and bad past. A Mary-Sue is not fun to play, nor is it fun to read.

A common mistake amongst role-players is thinking that quantity is more important than quality. If you write ten paragraphs about how green the grass is, and only one paragraph about your character and what they are doing, your role-post won't be effective. If you post the bare essentials without any descriptions at all, it won't be an effective post either. Instead, strike a balance between the two. Many role-players go for the "quality over quantity" rule.

Role-Playing Glossary

You might encounter some words that you don't know if you're new to role-playing. Here are some of the terms you might come across in the world of post-by-post role-playing:

RP - A shortening of the word role-play.

Canon - An already established character taken from an existing show, movie, comic, or book.

OC - "Original Character;" a character you make up by yourself.

Char - shortening of the word "character."

IC - Usually used to show that you are posting "in character." Used so that your rp partner(s) are not confused whether you or your character is saying something.

OOC - Used to show that you are posting "out of character." Used so that your rp partner(s) are not confused whether you or your character is saying something. (Sometimes denoted with either single parenthesis "( )" or double parenthesis "(( ))"

PB (playby) - A picture used to show what a character looks like.

One on One - A role play between two people.

Group - A role play with three or more people.

Intro - Introduction. The first post you make with your character in a role-play, introducing your character to the thread.

Godmodding - Controlling other people's characters.

Metagaming - Using out-of-character knowledge to affect your in-character writing.

Powerplaying - Changing in game rules to further your character, or to keep them from being hurt and to help them come out on the top of every situation.

Mary-Sue - A character that is virtually perfect. They are usually gorgeous, popular, and have a troubled past.

© Neit of RPG-D. Please do not steal.

Last edited by Hunter on Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:24 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Knowledge (Role Playing tips)   Sun Nov 28, 2010 7:15 pm

Dice Rolling

This can either become your friend or foe. Role Players will have the chance to roll the dice (a 2-sided, 6-sided, a 21-sided, or a 225 sided-dice) in small games they play with each other and the like. Just keep in mind that editing your post will change the result. So try to make sure your post is completely worked out, then choose to roll it. It's located with the rest of the bbcodes in the form of a 8-sided die image.

In a mission-like situation, annual Hunter Exams primarily, and other important events, dice rolling will be used to either excite the thread or make it easy. Essentially giving each person in these events something different and valuable. Moderators and Administrators will be the only ones providing each dice roll in these cases.

Another important aspect for dice rolling is for Hatsu types going according to Specialization. Anyone can choose his or her own Hatsu type save for Specialization. If they really wish to have Specialization the Administrator will need to roll a dice for them. Should they ask for another roll, they must wait 7 days. Anyone can roll so much as they if they really want Specialization and have the patience to wait for each roll.

To receive Specialization the Dice will be a 21-sided die. If you roll a 3, 7, 14, of 21, you are able to take Specialization.

~If you start out with Specialization, you have no secondary Hatsu. And if you start out with Manipulation, it has to be a primary and never a secondary (but can have a secondary).
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