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 Roleplaying rules

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PostSubject: Roleplaying rules   Tue May 31, 2016 10:48 am

Rules

To follow is the list of common role-play rules that every role-player should understand and follow.

Do Not God-mode

Godmodding is when a character features god-like abilities, such as invincibility or mind control, or other unrealistic powers that don't fit with lore. It's also considered godmodding to refuse death in fights or ignore role-players in scenarios in which said role-players are attempting to attack you. Nobody's good at everything; try and keep yourself in check.

Non-Example: "I hate you!" *She goes to push her off the edge, if she succeeds she will fall into lava and burn.*

Do Not Overpower Yourself or Others

Being "overpowered" is more or less what it sounds like: giving something or someone an unreasonable, unfair, unrealistic, or unbalanced amount of power, especially when it interferes with the ability of players around you to have fun. This can apply in the obvious ways, like having a character who is invincible or can summon the wrath of a zombie army with a flick of his fingers, but it can also be more subtle. For example, a character who is physically average but has skill mastery of over 70% of all main skills with ease can also be overpowered and put a limit on the ability of those around him to create engaging and challenging roleplay scenarios.

Do Not Metagame

Metagaming is when a player applies OOC-retrieved information to their IC character, such as participating in a war that you only saw was stated to be happening on a clan's thread on the forums, or hearing whispering because you saw the text, and knowing a character's name because you saw their username. This is the most commonly broken rule of role-play and most infuriating for many.

Non-Example: ((after being sent a PM from Chad)) *Jasper walks into the scene immediately and rushes to the corpse of her buddy Peridot, just moments after the arrow pierced her heart.*

Do Not Mix IC and OOC

Related to metagaming, it is considered taboo to "mix ic and ooc." That is, players are generally encouraged not to associate information and events that occurred between active, playing characters and events that occur between the role-players themselves. Most often, when players associate OOC information with their IC behavior, whether it be how they percieve another character or actually acting on information they wouldn't otherwise have, it's called metagaming.

However, it's also considered poor form to take IC information and apply it OOC. That is, if character A insults character B, and player B takes character A's insult as a personal attack from player A rather than exclusively an IC attack on character B, that is mixing IC and OOC. Any instance of holding against a player what his/her character said or did violates this rule (not to be confused with holding against the player any rule violations he made while controlling his character).

Another instance which is less inflammatory but still technically a violation of this rule is if character A says something, character B doesn't understand or takes it the wrong way, and player A deigns to explain himself OOC to player B. This is especially the case when player B already understood but was intentionally allowing his character to mis-react for the sake of adding interest to the game or being true to character B's nature. This cramps the flow of role-play and can sometimes be insulting to a player, since it suggests that player B's character is a Mary Sue who player B can't separate himself from.

Do Not Auto (Autohit, Autowalk, etc)

Autohitting is when a player performs an action without giving the affected players a chance to respond. For example, running up to somebody and saying *shatters gem* then running off would be autohitting. Auto also applies to non-combative actions to which another player might have a reaction. Saying, *The peridot slips past the ruby guards and into the diamond base,* while rubies are guarding the entrance to the diamond's base would be autowalking on the premise that, in all likelihood, those rubies would stop you before you got past them. This can easily be fixed with a simple rewording. Add "tries to" or "attempts to" to clarify that your character intends to perform said action, but his success depends on the responses of those around him. More advanced role-players will go into detail with their actions and emphasize their attempts. This is a frequently broken rule by newer role-players.

Non-Example: *Melissa throws a lit match onto the bed of her unfaithful lover and his mistress, then watches spitefully as his hair quickly catches fire and the two begin to burn.*

Do Not Powerplay

Powerplaying occurs when a player operates someone else's character without the other player's consent. The most blatant example of this would be a player writing, "Your character falls off the cliff when he walks up to it." As you can see, you take active control of what the other character does. Not only is this not fair to the other player, but it's also discouraged because often players will misconstrue the behaviors and personalities of characters they didn't design. Powerplaying goes into more subtle situations, however. Saying, "Ruby charges Jasper so fast that she wouldn't be able to react enough to avoid it," can also be considered a violation of this rule since Ruby's player has controlled Jasper's abilities, possibly in a way that doesn't accurately represent his character. The appropriate way to word Sally's attack would be, "Ruby charges Jasper so fast that it's unlikely she could totally dodge it without equally inhuman speed." This leaves it up to Jasper's player whether or not Jasper is actually capable of avoiding Ruby.

Non-Example: *Ruby walks up to Sapphire and moves to plant a kiss on her. Ruby's rich musk overcomes Sapphire so powerfully that she has no control over herself and kisses back.*

Do Not Play Mary-Sues
A Mary-Sue is a specific kind of character that is usually considered literarily reprehensible and otherwise unpleasant for others to play alongside. A Mary-Sue is any character (of any gender, age, race, or species) who fits one or more of these descriptions:

A character who’s too perfect, lacking realistic or logical flaws, or whose flaws do not affect them in real ways.
A character who’s exactly like their creator, except idealized or made “better”. (E.g. more attractive, smarter, given skills, abilities & powers the creator wishes they could have.) Essentially, the creator is inserting themselves into the story, but without the flaws, quirks & limits that make them interesting and real. Users are often discouraged from creating characters who would be described as, "He's based off me," especially since that comes with the extra risk of violating the avoid mixing ic and ooc rule.
A character who’s far too powerful, especially whose abilities exceed that which is possible for his/her race in the setting of the story. Particularly if said character has abilities that do not exist within the boundaries of the story’s world. Often these characters are technically legitimate, but are very, "Look at how unique and cool I am!"
A character who’s clichéd, having qualities or characteristics that are overused by people trying to have a powerful/perfect/cool character. This includes but is not limited to the traits listed as Popular Role-Play Trends.


Exceptions

Role-play is about creativity and while these rules are not just needed they can at times during very deep and important role-play points be a bit constricting. That being said, like many things in life the rules of role-play are not the be-all and end-all. It takes skill and knowledge to know when one can bend one of the above rules to affect a role-play in a positive manner, this is usually done in small groups where the people involved know what they are getting into and are okay with it. This takes a long time to understand and should only be attempted by advanced role-players.

Always keep in mind that the purpose of role-playing online is to have fun.

Please PM me if you have any suggestions or questions about these rules.
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