Welcome to the Weirdness

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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Tuor » Fri Sep 06, 2013 4:01 pm

@Blood: letting the players choose what to do can be good and bad, you already outlined the good, so I'll just add that sometime with too much freedom players dither and feel lost
"Suddenly Frodo noticed that a strange-looking weather-beaten man, sitting in the shadows near the wall, was also listening intently to the hobbit-talk. He had a tall tankard in front of him, and was smoking a long-stemmed pipe curiously carved. His legs were stretched out before him, showing high boots of supple leather that fitted him well, but had seen much wear and were now caked with mud. A travel-stained cloak of heavy dark-green cloth was drawn close about him, and in spite of the heat of the room he wore a hood that overshadowed his face; but the gleam of his eyes could be seen as he watched the hobbits."
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Vegedus » Fri Sep 06, 2013 4:07 pm

Yup. In tabletop, I almost exclusively play games that are open-ended and sandboxy, so I'm all for it, but it seems harder to do here. I'm not sure if it's the medium or culture. It's simply hard to force people to take agency. Even if you want to give freedom, you still gotta have a structured ways for them to create and follow their goals. More often, agency seems to spring up on it's own while people are doing other stuff. Players start out following the GMs lead, then start doing whatever once they're warmed up.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Sentios » Fri Sep 06, 2013 6:14 pm

Cheesemore wrote:First RP I was in was Highschool Hell by Zelosse. It was rather fun, first RP I ever did actually.

I've been thinking about making my first RP recently. But there's the huge problem of inexperience and not knowing exactly what needs to be done to make the RP successful. I have a general idea of what I want to do, but I feel I need more experience before I can consider making one.


A major point is that you as the GM have to be among the most active people in the RP, lack of GM contact and plot advancement just leaves a RP to stagnate. There are exceptions where the players are active enough and have enough creative freedom to drive the RP but overall if you aren't there to participate in your own idea then what's the point of anyone else being there either.

Beyond that the other major factor is if you're lucky enough to get a batch of people with dedication.


Vegedus wrote:#1: Player interaction is key. ...


Lack of GM activity is definitely not the correct method of creating player interaction, especially not in the beginning of a RP where players are still not settled into their character or the setting and their characters have little or no common experiences or synergies developed. That's not to say that over-reliance on a the GM's presence is good, but again if the GM isn't even going to be involved in their own idea what's even the point.

#3: Action is easy, but not great. ....


Will agree with this to the extent that I'm not contradicting myself. However action is neccessary to the point of helping players get in to a groove and to stir the waters after that, otherwise there will just be stagnation. I do think the 'here's an enemy, everyone go get it!' model of action has proven itself to be a failed endeavor but I believe that's because it's used too soon in most RPs or allowed to run for too long. Rather than being used for 'pages of fighting' it should be something to snap everyone into a new situation, make them refocus on something other than their present small talk, and to create situations where players can interact with others who hadn't necessarily fallen into their previous clique.

#4: Keep energy high, at all times...


Agree completely here in principle. Though I can see how a GM might accidentally create such a situation, I'd add that when they do it's part of their role to force something to happen and break the lull rather than falling into the same trap that consumed their players.



Of course this is all just from years of observation but to reiterate what I'm saying and I should say I'm talking about forum RPs not table top ones. The GM is the one who keeps the RP moving, it is their role to balance their direction with the activity of their players. In the beginning they must take a strong lead to help the players get a good feel for their characters, other's characters, and the setting without allowing themselves to become the only focus of the interactions (everyone wants to talk to a GM character and everyone is waiting a week+ just to get a response). As players get into a groove then the GM can back off a bit however that doesn't mean they can just up and disappear, they should be prepared for the lulls that will come with new events or locations already in mind. Favoring player direction is all well and good but the GM should in that case have several possible events or locations and subtly have the players choose between them as part of the IC. Bottom line; expecting players to just self-direct their way through your RP is a quick way to see your RP go right in the trash can. They'll have their moments where they just want to do their own socializing-thing but most players won't even take much in the way of creative liberties with the setting, you can forget about the plot.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Tenshi Nova » Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:09 pm

Vegedus wrote:Like say, GM goes "There's a big black door barring your path". Obviously, someone has to open the door, but no one wants to do it, because there's no way to do it that's not boring. "My character grabs the handle and opens the doors." is a boring-ass post...

Levi kicks open the door and yells, "COME AT ME BITCHES!"

K, back to reading the interesting discussion.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Vegedus » Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:02 am

Sentios, I agree completely. Good points all.
Sentios wrote:most players won't even take much in the way of creative liberties with the setting, you can forget about the plot.

Which is a shame, I think. But true. Even when I explicitly state players can and should take control of the setting and plot, they don't, as if too timid to do so. I figure that have more to do with culture than something innate, people having played more linear than open games and not feeling confident in dictating anything more than their own character.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Tuor » Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:16 am

Sentios has some good insights into GMing, but I don't think I can remember him GMing an Rp.
"Suddenly Frodo noticed that a strange-looking weather-beaten man, sitting in the shadows near the wall, was also listening intently to the hobbit-talk. He had a tall tankard in front of him, and was smoking a long-stemmed pipe curiously carved. His legs were stretched out before him, showing high boots of supple leather that fitted him well, but had seen much wear and were now caked with mud. A travel-stained cloak of heavy dark-green cloth was drawn close about him, and in spite of the heat of the room he wore a hood that overshadowed his face; but the gleam of his eyes could be seen as he watched the hobbits."
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Vegedus » Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:25 am

I don't think he has, based on what he wrote last page, but I'm basing it just as much on my play time as my GM time as well, so it's fine. You can learn from watching, though there's also some things that are only obvious from the other side of the metaphorical table.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Tuor » Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:39 am

True facts and good points
"Suddenly Frodo noticed that a strange-looking weather-beaten man, sitting in the shadows near the wall, was also listening intently to the hobbit-talk. He had a tall tankard in front of him, and was smoking a long-stemmed pipe curiously carved. His legs were stretched out before him, showing high boots of supple leather that fitted him well, but had seen much wear and were now caked with mud. A travel-stained cloak of heavy dark-green cloth was drawn close about him, and in spite of the heat of the room he wore a hood that overshadowed his face; but the gleam of his eyes could be seen as he watched the hobbits."
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Sentios » Sat Sep 07, 2013 5:24 am

Vegedus wrote:Which is a shame, I think. But true. Even when I explicitly state players can and should take control of the setting and plot, they don't, as if too timid to do so. I figure that have more to do with culture than something innate, people having played more linear than open games and not feeling confident in dictating anything more than their own character.



I think there are a few factors involved. First being if the player felt up to directing a plot themselves and had the creative spark neccessary, they probably would have just started their own RP instead of joining yours. Second even when told to take some liberties, especially if done too early in the RP, everyone seems to hesitate to meddle too much with someone else's ideas. It still feels like 'so and so's RP' rather than being something the player has a claim in and they don't want to step on toes by making changes to it. I do think it's a cultural thing but I think it has more to do with the community rules. It seems like a negative development emerged from having respect for the other peoples' ideas, so people won't alter in it any more than they would another player's character.

Tuor wrote:Sentios has some good insights into GMing, but I don't think I can remember him GMing an Rp.


Vegedus wrote:I don't think he has, based on what he wrote last page, but I'm basing it just as much on my play time as my GM time as well, so it's fine. You can learn from watching, though there's also some things that are only obvious from the other side of the metaphorical table.


I haven't. I fully realize that I set a very high bar here but it's not as though I expect perfect adherence to what I'm saying. Only that this is the ideal that I would say is neccessary for a GM to strive for if they want to do 100% of what they can to make their RP a success. It's not a wonder pill or anything; lack of player commitment, which is the major RP killer around here, will still end a RP quickly.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Vegedus » Sat Sep 07, 2013 5:52 am

Oh, I think we should hold ourselves to a high bar. Learning from our mistakes, and others and trying to improve upon them, inching closer to perfection, is the only way we get better. Which isn't to say we should demonize people who fail, but the goal should be set high. And as mentioned in point #4, I do think game design has as much a hand in "player commitment" as the players themselves. If the game is well-made and well-run you'll create player commitment. Half the players in my current game dropped out after one or two posts, and it's all on me: I didn't give them that beginning push you talk about, I expected them to create their own plot without any warm-up. The ones currently active are those who I quickly got involved with my characters. I could bemoan their lack of initiative or commitment, but really, it's a design note for the next game.

Sentios wrote: I do think it's a cultural thing but I think it has more to do with the community rules. It seems like a negative development emerged from having respect for the other peoples' ideas, so people won't alter in it any more than they would another player's character.

Mmm, yes, indeed. I have something of a beef with the "no-godmodding" rule. I can totally understand why it exist, with immature players and no resolution system, it's chaos. But it also promotes helplessness, timidness for the player, the idea that they can't control anything beyond their character. That only the GM has the right to godmod, and you should respect his glorious plot and setting.

First being if the player felt up to directing a plot themselves and had the creative spark neccessary, they probably would have just started their own RP instead of joining yours.

At the very least, this isn't true in tabletop. There's still a world of difference between being a GM who can handle some responsibilities and a firm idea for the game, and a player that has the right to add to and modify that idea. I have players who hate being GM, but love to have agency in the story. I don't think it's different here, but it's true you still need a creative spark. Personally, I see roleplaying as an inherently creative activity, and I'm not terribly interested in any game that doesn't encourage that, but I guess most players don't share that view and is just as interested in just being "along for the ride". "Roleplaying as collaboratory storytelling" is a bit of a learned taste, it's not why most people join the hobby.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Asmodai » Sat Sep 07, 2013 7:07 am



Hnnnggg... That style and music! So pretty!
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Exodis » Sun Sep 08, 2013 4:46 am

Happy Birthday Zelosse! ;D
-From your neighborhood Birthday Poster.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby MQuinny1234 » Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:12 pm

Happy spawning day Zel.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Blood Lord » Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:29 pm

Happy Birthday, Zel!
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Tenshi Nova » Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:34 pm

No Birthday thread? T.T
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Exodis » Sun Sep 08, 2013 1:35 pm

Should Zel deserve a Birthday thread? He's been in mainly the RP forums and LoL thread... hmmm. What do you guys think?
Mir@k: Exodis is the little kid of the forum, compared to everyone else.
Grey: From now on i will call you eggy because i don't like x but ex sounds like eggs. i like eggs.
Yog: Exodis, your manner of speech and the way you conduct yourself is beginning to evolve to the point where I'm starting to like you.
Blood Lord: Yup, Randori is a very well respected night elf of the community. His valuable service to the site has brought great blessings to this people.
BeeAre: I'm totally gay for Randori.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby MQuinny1234 » Sun Sep 08, 2013 3:33 pm

Birthday threads aren't really done in the RP forum. The traffic of threads isn't swift enough.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Sigment » Sun Sep 08, 2013 3:50 pm

Well, happy "My Parents Haven't Killed Me Yet" Anniversary, Zel. I know that's how I feel every year.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby The Mad Doctor » Mon Sep 09, 2013 8:52 am

My birthday is tomorrow, you bastards better not forget about me.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby MQuinny1234 » Mon Sep 09, 2013 9:14 am

...Who is he?
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby The Mad Doctor » Mon Sep 09, 2013 10:36 am

MQuinny1234 wrote:...Who is he?

You'll figure it out when I murder you in your sleep tonight.
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Exodis » Mon Sep 09, 2013 12:21 pm

Doc, you're barely/not known here in the RP forum.
I think that post would be suited in the Bleed/Spam forum.
Mir@k: Exodis is the little kid of the forum, compared to everyone else.
Grey: From now on i will call you eggy because i don't like x but ex sounds like eggs. i like eggs.
Yog: Exodis, your manner of speech and the way you conduct yourself is beginning to evolve to the point where I'm starting to like you.
Blood Lord: Yup, Randori is a very well respected night elf of the community. His valuable service to the site has brought great blessings to this people.
BeeAre: I'm totally gay for Randori.
Stuff: Exodis, you are learning. Mama is proud.

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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby The Mad Doctor » Mon Sep 09, 2013 1:26 pm

oh, sorry. just forget me already again
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby Asmodai » Mon Sep 09, 2013 1:30 pm

STRANGER DANGER!
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Re: Welcome to the Weirdness

Postby MQuinny1234 » Mon Sep 09, 2013 2:44 pm

DANGER DANGER. HIGH VOLTAGE.

That song is never going to completely get out of my head. One of those ones that just pops out of the murky sea of my mind when I hear the word DANGER.
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