Role Playing Education

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Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 2/14/2010, 8:07 pm

Lesson One


“There are known knowns, and known unknowns, but there are also unknown unknowns. Stuff that you don’t know that you don’t know, ya’ know?!” –Gin Rummy


There are three basic times of Knowledge in any Role Playing game. They are:

Known Knowns

Known Unknowns

Unknown Unknowns

Each of these plays a vital part in the role playing experience except Unknown Unknowns.

A Known Known is something which both the player, and the character they are using, know, this can be as simple as the name of another character, or as complicated as everything about another character. The main distinction that must be recognized with Known Knowns, is that even though The Player may know _______ their Character does not know ______ until it has been revealed or told to them through the context of the game.

Known Unknowns are very similar to Known Knowns, they quiet simply something which the Player knows, but their Character is currently unaware of. This can be as simple as another character’s mood or ‘off screen ’ actions, or as complicated as the entire villain’s evil plot. It is very important to respect the difference between Player Knowledge and Character Knowledge.

Player Knowledge is the knowledge possessed by the player. This means that everything the player reads, talks about with the other players, or simply infers from his or her knowledge of the other player’s playing style become part of their Player Knowledge.

Character Knowledge is the knowledge possessed by the character. This means everything that the character encounters learns or is told about the game world, the other characters around them, or even themselves becomes character Knowledge. The primary thing to remember about Character Knowledge is that all Character Knowledge must be explained. There must be some way either through their experience, the abilities at their disposal or otherwise that your Character may have learned or gleamed any knowledge they possess.

The purpose of differentiating the two is that, should a Character act upon, or even be shown to possess Player Knowledge, than to an objective party it would appear as though that character possessed an unnatural ability, to read the minds of the other characters, foresee the future, perceive events to which they had absolutely no connection or any variety of other extra-sensory abilities.

Baring characters who actually possess such abilities, this it to be strongly discouraged.

Common examples of Characters acting on Player Knowledge include, heroes who inexplicably wind up exactly where the big showdown is going to happen, Characters who ‘know something’s up’ Characters who ‘feel’ that something is wrong regardless of their actual ability to perceive danger, or Characters simply ‘not feeling right about ____’ Any of these barring explanations for the Character’s actions is to be strongly discouraged during any serious Role Play.

Note: Bye ‘explanations’ I mean either specific experiences either within the game itself or in the Character’s background that explain why they would be skeptical of another Character, or abilities listed on the Character’s Character Sheet through which they could sense dishonesty, perceive danger or otherwise be able to acquire the required Character Knowledge.

The third type of knowledge, the Unknown Unknown, is also to be greatly discouraged. Unknown Unknown knowledge is the only type of knowledge which should probably never appear in any quality Role Play.

In theory and Unknown Unknown is Knowledge which both The Player, and the Character do not possess. As such one would think that such Knowledge would never appear in a Role Play, seeing as no one is able to possess it. Not true. There are Players out there who will deliberately withhold things about their Characters in order to make them seem ‘more mysterious’ or ‘more dramatic.’

What these Players fail to realize is that by withholding things from their fellow Players they are in fact restricting the other’s ability to play with them. If a Player knows something about another’s Character that they find interesting, they can guide the story toward revealing it to their own Character, almost certainly causing an interesting & fun storyline along the way.

It is important to remember that the Character Sheet is not something which should actually tell the reader how the character behaves. A thorough Sheet might give the reader the basic impression through the choice of abilities, the choice of adjectives in the appearance, and other categories, along with the Character’s Background, but overall it shouldn’t be the Sheet which defines the Character, it should be the Player.




This brings us to
Lesson Two

The Character, The Player & The Role.

Now most of you probably think you have a pretty good grasp of the difference between the Character and the Player. You probably do, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t benefit from everything I’m going to say about them. Particularly important is to keep in mind The Role of your character.

The Role, as one might expect, in a Role Playing game is paramount. However all too often I see Players neglect or even ignore to cast their Characters in an appropriate Role.

Roles are quite simply, the position within a given story that a character fulfills. Roles can be as simple as a protagonist, or as complicated as primary manipulative antagonist. However regardless of what Role your character plays, it is important to recognize it and play towards it.

A game in which every character attempt to have the story revolve around them, indicative of posts habitually referring to the emotional reaction of the character rather than the physical one, is destined to become either stale or dry, as for those who don’t actively engage in drawing the story toward themselves have no fun, or hectic and chaotic, in which all the character attempt to relate to the same events to themselves at the same time.
A brief listing of possible Character Roles is:
Primary Protagonist
Secondary Protagonist(s)
Primary Antagonist
Secondary Antagonist(s)
Protagonist Support(s)
Antagonist Support(s)

Now virtually any of these Roles can take upon whatever form is best suited to the Character occupying them. For example a couple of different examples of Characters behaving in the Protagonist Support Role would be; The Dutiful Friend, The Caring Instructor, The Romantic Interest, or even The Nemesis.

The only thing which more or less remains constant about the behavior of any Support Character is that they ask questions of whomever they’re supporting, a Support Character is like the friend who asks the Main Character what they’re going to do just before the final showdown, or even the Romantic Interest who pleads with them not to go.

Support Character do not get to have The Scene revolve around them, but that does not mean they do not play a vital Role in creating it. A game with no Support Character always results in either non-stop combat, or villain-hero dialog.

A Secondary Character is similar; however they’re more likely to be directly involved in a specific Scene than a Support Character. A Secondary Character is like the villain’s assistant, the hero’s side kick or even one of the Protagonist’s close friends. They’re not the cause of any of the direct conflict in the Scene, but they still contribute to its resolution.

The main thing to remember about Secondary Characters is that they almost always have direct a direct connection with the Primary Character of that specific Scene. The Secondary Antagonist would be the trusted lackey the Primary Antagonist sends to harass the heroes while he stays behind safe in his evil lair. The Secondary Protagonist would be the hero who out of concern for the Primary Protagonist goes out to face the Primary Antagonist, knowing they don’t stand a chance.

Secondary Characters provide direct actions for the Primary Characters to react to directly to. This prevents a game from becoming nothing more than the villains scheming in their lair, while the heroes go out for pizza.

Now most of you probably think you know what I mean when I say Primary Character. You think that this is the Main Character, and his Nemesis. Robin & Slade, Ichigo & Aizen. Well you’re Wrong.

Yes a Primary Character is one of the two Characters around which the plot of a specific Scene most centrally revolves, but this does not mean they are the Main Character. A Main Character is a Character that the story revolves so tightly around that removing that Character would cause irreparable damage to that story.

The difference is that even without a Primary Character to play off of, Secondary and Support Characters can freely interact amongst themselves, causing interesting and perhaps even progressive plot lines to develop. Main Characters Have to have the spotlight, Primary Characters know how to share.

A Primary Character is likely the most difficult Character Role to play as. Not only does it require the most work and attention of any of the other Character Roles, but it requires The Player controlling it to know when to push the plot forward, and when to sit back and let it simmer gently. This is especially important when engaged in a fast-paced Forum Based Role Play, because while simmering allows the other Characters involved to take the spotlight for a moment, but if a specific storyline is allowed to simmer for too long, it will boil away.

Losing a storyline, for any reason, is bad. Having an unresolved story in a Role Play means that all the Players involved will have to doubt whether or not their Characters can relate back to anything which went on in that lost storyline.

Now this brings me onto my next point.



The Player.

You are The Player. The Player is anyone involved in actively playing any of the Characters involved in any of the active elements of a Role Play. Now the most important thing for any Player to remember is to remain objective. No matter how much you love your Character, no matter how awesome you think he or she is, no matter how much work you’ve put into carefully laying each and every brick of their background, you Must remained objective.

No matter how much attention you have paid to your Character, you must not allow yourself to become emotionally attached to their actions. If another Character insults yours, if another Character breaks the heart of yours, you must not allow yourself to react on emotion. While it is perfectly acceptable for your Character to react emotionally, you must allowed yourself to calmly and objectively make certain that your Character’s response is appropriate for your Character.

If someone breaks your Character’s heart, and your Character blast them through a wall, then this must be In Character for them. If your Character is the altruistic hero, who firmly believes that good exists in all life and there is no such thing as innate evil, someone who couldn’t even imagine taking another life no matter the circumstances and has never once doubted any of their beliefs, The Only way it could possibly be appropriate for your Character to react to having their heart broken by blasting the offending Character through a wall, is if you were going to use this even as a Dramatic Change in your Character’s persona.

A Dramatic Change is any event which can be used to explain a significant change in the behavior of a Character. Being Brainwashed, having their Heart Broken, Killing for The First Time, any of these would be acceptable precipitants for a Dramatic Change. However, a Player must remember that the only way to reverse a Dramatic Change, is with another Dramatic Change. Being Un-brainwashed, Finding Love Again, Reaffirming their Belief System, something, anything to explain why the Character changed, and then changed back.

Regardless of the Character, if the Player doesn’t justify their actions, if the Player doesn’t remember to be objective bad things will happen. Feelings could get hurt, otherwise promising storylines could become so muddled they ultimately become the textual equivalent of a tar pit, or worse, other Players will just leave.

No one likes playing with a Character who is so utterly random that they simply do whatever they want with little or no explanation, and the relationship between Players is just as important as the relationship between Characters. While two Characters may be archrivals that doesn’t mean, and shouldn’t mean that their Players are archrivals as well. Players should never become personally involved with their Characters. No matter what the game is, it’s still a game. That’s why they’re called Role Playing Games, and the purpose of any game it to have fun.

If you aren’t having fun, you should tell the other Players, or better yet, the Game Master, because if you’re not having fun, than you’re not getting anything from the game. A game where the Players are having fun, regardless of its setting or the Characters involved, is bound to be far more successful and interesting than a game where everyone is just playing along for the sake of manners.

The Character

“Character–noun
The aggregate of features and traits that form the individual nature of some person or thing.”

Your Character should not be easy to summarize. People are not easily summarized. No matter how hard we try there is always something about someone that doesn’t fit neatly into the box. Thusly there is no reason why your Character should. If you’re playing the cut throat assassin who’s given up on people deeming them all worthless and irredeemably, give him a soft spot for kittens. If you’re playing the hardnosed bounty hunter who drinks liquor and hits on ladies, give him a personal code to live by.

Characters should never be able to be easily summarized. Think of some of your favorite characters from your favorite shows. Think about what made you love them, what made them great. It wasn’t simply their amazing powers, or their innate ability to think of a witty line. It was the story behind them. The emotions and the drama that was drawn out by the story, that’s what made them great characters, the different elements of their Persona.

Persona is a psychological term, and as defined by C.G. Jung one of the fathers of modern psychology it means. “The mask or façade presented to satisfy the demands of the situation or the environment and not representing the inner personality of the individual; the public personality, as contrasted with Anima.”

Anima is another term, and again as defined by C.G. Jung means: “The inner personality that is turned toward the unconscious of the individual.”

It’s this duality that gives people their depth of character, and Players should strive to show this with their Characters. A flat Character, the manipulative villain, or the altruistic hero, while playable, is completely lifeless. Characters need to be given motivation, just like people or actors do. A villain who does evil, simply for the sake of evil isn’t very compelling, nor is a hero who simply does good because it’s good.

Again think of your favorite story or comic book characters. Why did they do what they did, Batman fights crime because he’s desperately trying to make up for something which wasn’t really his fault. He feels guilt and conquers it when he’s defeats his enemies. As long as he keeps fighting, he hasn’t really failed, and since he can never actually succeed at protecting his deceased parents, he’ll keep fighting forever.

Superman works to protect a world that isn’t even to satisfy some predicated mission he feels was cast upon him by the father he never even got a chance to know. As the last of his kind it’s up to him to make their mark upon history. He can’t be just a man, he can’t let himself falter even once, because if he does, than not only will he be remembered for that one mistake, but so would his entire people, a people he’s never even known.

Each of these Character have both a Persona, the public face they show to the world, and an Anima, the hidden face they keep to themselves. Superman tries to please a father he’s never even known, and Batman tries to make up for a mistake that wasn’t even made. Neither of them could exist without their Persona, and that’s what makes them such compelling Characters, because even though they are what they seem to be, they’re only that way, because the need to be in order to deal with the world.

You should try to mimic this sort of duality in your Characters, the evil villain who does evil in vengeance for a perceived crime done against him in his past, or the great hero who stands strong for those around him because he cannot allow himself to be otherwise.

One of my personal favorite things about Characters isn’t their powers or their actions, it’s their history. Why do they behave the way they do? What causes them to see the world the way they do? Who is it that they’re willing to bow to, and why?

One of my personal favorite Characters comes from a show entitled Black Cat. The Character’s name is Creed Diskenth. Coming from a wealthy family, from a very young age he was beaten by his mother, his father never shown it is assumed he is either absent or no longer around. His mother would use bouquets of roses, and so as an adult Creed is obsessed with roses and seems to equate them with violence. Creed murdered his mother when he was about seven, and subsequently ran away becoming one of a number of members of an order of assassins.

The main character of the show shares a similar past, adopted by the assassin who murdered his family he was trained to kill from a young age, and ultimately graduated by murdering his caretaker. Throughout the series Creed shows significant romantic interest in the main character, however almost all of this is predicated on the main character’s eyes. Creed believing that the main character, previously to giving up killing; possesses the eyes of a murderer, seeks to restore his lost companion’s bloodlust.

Creed is clearly thoroughly insane, but even his insanity is justified.

“All actions are judged by the motive prompting them” –Mohammad.

What truly defines a twisted Character isn’t its actions; it’s the motivation behind that action. Creed is obsessed with the main character, not just because he needs to be for the story to be interesting, but because he senses a kinship with him. And as such, Players shouldn’t just have their Character’s perform actions, but give their Characters their own motivation to perform those actions. If a hero needs to defeat a villain, it makes a far more compelling story that if he simple does defeat him. If a villain needs to take revenge for some perceived injustice dealt him, than his actions too are far more compelling. Even if they’re the exact same actions, knowing the motivation behind them compels us to understand them, or better yet seek to understand them.

Nothing is as powerful as villain whose actions we sympathize with, or who we simply cannot bring ourselves to understand. If a villain does something wicked for a reason we can understand, we feel torn, we don’t want him to be as evil as he really is, by the same token, if there is a villain who we simply cannot bring ourselves to understand the motives behind, but say, still hold some manner of logic to them, than we feel he truly is as twisted as he seems.

The Role in Review

Now I’ve talked a lot about a lot. But there is one thing that I simply feel that I must make clear, and that quiet simply is that while roles are important to the progression of a story, and that while stories are important to the enjoyment of a Role Playing Game on more than a whack-a-mole level, Roles should changed.

It’s no fun for once player to have to play the supporting friend for the entire game, some people may be comfortable in a particular role, but that does not mean that they should be allowed to simply sit in that role forever. Just because someone is comfortable in or lets themselves be forced into a role doesn’t mean that it’s the best role for their character to be playing at that time.

This doesn’t mean that people should ever try to force roles onto people, but it does mean that roles are not iron clad. I feel as though I may have confused some people with my earlier use of the terminology ‘scene’ by a ‘scene’ I meant a particular event which occurs within the Role Play. A scene is like, the villain hero fight, the romantic conversation between A & B, the dinner shared by C & D, the gathering of all relevant parties before the climatic showdown. A scene can be anything really, but the point is that while one character can step into the spotlight for one scene, another scene might revolve around another character entirely.

It is important however for The Player to know when their Character is stealing the scene. Stealing the scene is bad, not just bad in fact, but very bad. Stealing the scene is when a Character does anything which pulls attention away from anything else to point it at themselves. This is like a Character going onto a tirade about how much they ___ or virtually anything that involves a Character saying “this reminds me of” and is not concluded in the same post containing that dreaded sentence start.

Recognizing the scene is an important ability that I personally think all Role Players should have. It is not however an essential one. Most of us are able to pick up on when a moment has passed innately, and when we don’t it doesn’t really matter because the moment has passed and the other Players are moving on with the game.




Basic Play and Basic Player Etiquette

Now most of you probably think that this section doesn’t need to be read, that you already know everything there is to know about basic play and basic etiquette. Well ya don’t. I don’t, and if I don’t then it’s a sure bet that you don’t.

But here’s what I do know.

Self Important Characters are a Pain. They hog up the story, nobody really likes them except their creators, and even when they’re played well they’re not fun to play with. These Characters are the, Sasuke Uchiha of the game, the overly dramatic overly self tormented person who won’t just get over themselves and let the other Characters help them. It doesn’t even have to be a protagonist, sometimes villains can do this too, and I for one am always amazed at how well some people are able to take otherwise perfectly good adversaries and turn them into whiny moaning drama queens who go on a ten page tirade about how their mother’s never got them a puppy while they’re supposed to be fighting the heroes.

Another thing, while I’m on the subject. Villain Monologs, while great in Cartoon Shows because you can have the heroes doing something to foil the villain’s scheme off screen. There is no off screen in a Role Play, anything that’s going to happen has to have something said about it, thusly when a Character who is supposed to be providing adversity for the others starts off on some long winded speech that they won’t finish for three more posts, everyone else is left sort of high and dry on something to do.

And speaking of the No off Screen element of Role Plays let me just point out for the record that any “And this is what they were doing all that time…” Type of thing is cheap, and while not against any sort of rules I’ve ever encountered, I really feel that they violate the spirit of the Role Play, since any post containing past actions, short of how to explain why a Character hasn’t been around due to the Player’s absence, really can’t be responded to. Past actions can’t be reacted to, only acknowledged, and when a Player hasn’t been present to acknowledge there is nothing conflicting with what their Character may have been doing, but when a Character states that they were doing something previously, all the impressions of the other Players are changed.

It is important to keep in mind the impression your Character’s action make on the other Players. Personally I find this s important I am a little neurotic about being misunderstood, and go to great lengths to detail an action which might be otherwise misunderstood. Thus far no one has ever told me this is a bad thing short of the fact that it makes my posts so long that some people simply ignore them to wait for the cliff notes.

On this note I would just like to point out that there is nothing worse, in my eyes, than someone who isn’t willing to give a Game enough effort to even bother reading some of the more lengthy posts end to end. This shows such laziness that it’s really just despicable. Now I will admit there are those people out there who post things that just ramble on and on about nothing of particular consequence, the flavor of their sandwich, how much they hate/love another character, on and on they ramble it’s really quiet annoying.

But this is where Player to Player relations come in. When a Player and another Player know each other outside the Game, than they can make basic assumptions about whether or not that Player’s post is going to be worth reading, but when one Player doesn’t know another Player, or even that other person’s playing style, than they cannot assume that the post can be skipped over.

Calling Hits is another thing which should only be done after an intimate repartee has long been established. For those of you unfamiliar with this terminology I have just one thing to say, familiarize yourself with it. If you’re looking to Role Play with people, particularly people who have done so before, it’s probably a good idea to learn the sort of terms that they’ll be using so that A: You don’t end up sounding like an idiot, and more importantly B: so you know what they’re talking about.

Simply put Calling Hits is when one Player has their Character actually strike another Player’s Character during their post. There’s an old comic book artist’s saying that states that the reader never gets to see the actual hit, and for the most part it holds true. You never see someone with their knuckles flat against their target. It’s all action and reaction, wind up and follow through. This is how it should work in Role Playing Games as well.

In the traditional Dungeons & Dragons games Players would use a set of statistics math dice and numbers to figure out whether or not one Character could strike another. Since most of us don’t have that kind of patience, let alone the ability to do so within the Forum, it’s best if we just all follow the unspoken rule of not actually striking another Player’s Character without their permission.

An example of Calling a Hit would be something like. “Fred lit Stan on fire.”

In this example Stan as no choice but to either directly refute Fred’s post. “Stan was not actually on fire, having managed to…” or accept that he is now on fire. “Stan burned and screamed running about madly as he attempted to extinguish his torso.”

The correct method of would look something like. “Fred tossed a bucket of gasoline at Stan, sending a lit match close behind it.”

This is not only more interesting, since it breaks the action up into a couple of different motions, but it gives Stan’s Player far more options. He can dodge the gas and the match, avoid the gas but not the match, avoid the match but not the gas, or he can take the hit.

Taking the Hit is just as important an aspect as Calling a Hit, the only difference is that, while experienced Players will often Take Hits, they will seldom call them. By the same token inexperienced Players will often Call Hits but seldom take them. The problem with this is of course that a group of inexperienced Players may not even realize they’re doing anything wrong until an experienced Player *ahemmeahem* steps in and tells them so.

Knowing when to Take the Hit is an important part of being a good Role Player. If your Character can’t realistically avoid something, don’t let them avoid it. If you’re a perfectly normal human being shot at, Take the Hit, even if it’s just the classic John Wayne Shot. For those of you not familiar with this reference, in most of his movies John Wayne a classic hero of the western movie genre would often take a gun shot in the shoulder, and just sort of shrug it off.

In reality, while adrenaline is a wonderful hormone and many feats of heroism and amazement can be attributed to it, IE getting back up after getting shot and still escaping the bad guys, pain does exist, and as such it is one of the spectrum of emotions you should seek to include in your Characters. Emotional Pain is one kind of pain yes, but Physical Pain is much more interesting, and tends to result in your Character being more relatable and less of a self indulgent brooding shut irritation.

Now this brings me to my next topic.


Knowing Your Character

Now again, most of you probably think that you know your Character’s like the back of your hand. After all you made them, and they’re the most amazing thing ever to walk out of your battered little teenaged brain. Well for once you may be right. You may know your Character as well as you possibly can.

But hey, guess what. Character’s Change. That’s right, that ultra amazing super-powerful swordsman you dream about meeting at night will never be the same the moment you take him out of his box. That’s sort of the point. Just encase you didn’t catch that, I’ll explain myself. The point of introduction a Character into a Role Play, isn’t to see how awesome and dramatic you can make him so you can win the love and respect of your Co-Players, the point of most, ‘most’ because all Role Plays have different directions based upon their set up, the point of most Role Plays is to have fun and develop an interesting story using the Characters created by a pack of friends and a setting agreed upon by all those involved.

Now since your wonderful ultra awesome masturbatory fantasy you’ve had in mind since you were twelve has now been shattered by the woefully cold light of reality I’ll give you a moment to recover.

Alright that’s long enough.

To get back on point, Players need to be able to recognize events that will change the way their Characters will behave. Now since most people, and this goes for Characters as well, are pretty well set in their ways by the time puberty gives up, it can take a lot to change a Character even a little. This does not mean that a Character will never change.

If I can step into the realm of philosophy for a moment, and no doubt confuse the snot out of 90% of you.

Science, certain Religions, and Ancient Philosophers all agree that Humans, lack the tools to perceive “The Thing in itself.”

Simply put this means that we ‘see’ things the way they are because we judge them as such. All our perceptions are based on assumptions and, frankly experiments. A rock isn’t hard by the very nature of it being a rock, after all iron and diamond are both far harder than rock. A rock is hard because it’s harder than bone, and bone, as an element of the human body is something which we, as humans, feel we possess an advanced understanding of. A rock is hard because when rock meets bone, rock wins.

This is the same reason why say, someone who is physically able, finds something light, while someone who is less physically able, may find it heavy. The factual weight of the object doesn’t change between the two people, simply their perception of it does.

Now apply this to relationships.

What do people judge relationships based on?
How does that element vary between different people?
How does that variable effect their perception of the relationship?

Now it’s fairly well agreed that people judge things based upon their past experiences. It is also fairly well agreed that no two people can possess the exact same past experiences. Now what does this mean? That no two people can possibly judge the same relationship exactly the same. Simply put they lack the tools to.

This is where the fun of a Role Play is born. Each and every Character involved is different, assuming they are actually different Characters, and each and every Player involved is also different, assuming they are actually different Players. So not only should each and every Character judge a situation, an object or relationship, differently, but each and every Player will develop different reactions for their Character to perform. Then because each of those Characters reacted differently, their experiences will be different, and because their experiences will be different, they’ll be different.

This is how your ultra super awesome Character is developed. Character Development isn’t just something that happens outside the Game. If it is, than the game tends to be boring. Characters should change grow develop relationships, lose relationships and ultimately grow to become, if not better, different people.

One of my personally favorite things to do is to develop a Character who can fit into multiple Role Playing scenarios, because I know that every time I play him/her the result with be different, even if I’m playing with the same people as before.

Review Questions.


  • What is the only type of Knowledge that is not vital to the Role Playing Experience?

  • What are the only two Roles which there cannot be more than one of each?

  • What is the difference between a Primary Character and a Main Character?

  • What is the most important thing for a Player to remember?

  • Should Characters be easily summarized?

  • Are Roles set in stone?

  • What is the difference between Calling a Hit and Taking the Hit?

  • Where does Character Development take place?
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 2/15/2010, 3:57 am

Post Script: Also, I'm taking questions in this thread if any of you have any, and if I can't answer it, or if you can and I haven't gotten around to it, feel free to do so yourselves. Wink
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by archiesangel on 2/15/2010, 9:13 am

Wow..... o.O
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Charm on 2/15/2010, 11:45 am

Hi! I have one question. ^_^

There is always the possibility of encountering others in RPs who do not follow these rules. If such a thing occurs, how should we react?

For instance: Someone calls a hit on my character; should I simply take the hit and move on, or is there a more eloquent way to handle the situation?

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 2/15/2010, 4:13 pm

Excellent question Charm and I applaud you for it.

Now as a general thing I would advocate playing nice, but also informing the other of their error. Personal Messages can be a great way to air your grievance without making it into a scene or interrupting the flow of the game.

I would just take the hit, probably using some trick of the trade to keep my Character from taking too much damage, assuming it's something that would even damage him/her, if it isn't taking it doesn't really matter, and then send whomever it was who called the hit a nice short little Personal Message containing something along the lines of. "Hi, uh, yeah I'm just sending you this to ask if you could refrain from calling hits against me in the ____ Role Play. I don't really like it and..."

Most often people who Call Hits don't even realize they're doing something wrong, so just popping them a polite little message to inform them that it's in poor taste is not only an excellent way to handle the situation, but a great way to educate the other person.

And if you really don't want to take the hit, than you can just restrain yourself from replying until they've gotten the PM, and in it say something along the lines of asking them to rephrase, and explain why you don't want to take the hit.
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Music_Hero2779 on 2/15/2010, 4:18 pm

Couldn't you call a dodge? Just to make it simple?

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 2/15/2010, 4:20 pm

Well as a general think dodge is difficult when someone outright calls a hit.

Calling a hit tends to look something like
"Jack swung his leg and landed a hard round house kick against Sue's belly."

Dodging when someone outright says they hit you is almost in as poor taste as outright saying you hit someone.
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Music_Hero2779 on 2/15/2010, 4:24 pm

What if someone outright K.Os u? Same thing?

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by redeagle321 on 2/15/2010, 4:26 pm

._.;
I see where this is going, I get it.

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Music_Hero2779 on 2/15/2010, 4:28 pm

redeagle321 wrote:._.;
I see where this is going, I get it.
XD no it's fine Red. Adds flavor to the rp

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 2/15/2010, 4:31 pm

It's a little different when they start taking over your Character's actions. If someone says that someone else's Character takes upon a quality, sick, in love, unconscious, than that's God Moding, something which I really should've addressed, but it was getting kinda long.

I may add a Chapter Two.

But simply put when one Player takes over the actions of a Character that isn't theirs that's a pretty far from OK as things get. I would probably go with something like.

"Sue was not in fact unconscious, but her gut did hurt. She..."

Taking the hit, but outright denying the effect that someone else tried to force upon you.

A proper way to politely ask someone if you can KO their Character without out right asking, is to add extra description to the attack.

"Jack swung his leg in a round house kick, his strong legs providing well enough force to knock out a normal person."

I also took out the calling of the hit. See here it clearly implies that taking this hit would A: knock you out, or B: put a normal person close to being knocked out.

If the defending player is not objected to becoming unconscious at your hands. Than they have that option, while if they are, they also have an easy out of simply dodging the blow. Good Players however will often split the hair, block the blow, take some damage, but not enough to go outright KO, just because fights are more interesting when each party involved takes some damage. You never see an epic fight where both people just keep dodging the other's attacks.
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Riaaanna on 3/1/2010, 10:18 am

Post some more, TDG. I'ma print this and make it into a book. :D

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Music_Hero2779 on 3/15/2010, 5:33 pm

Any advice on controling two or more rp people at once? (just want to see what you'll say)

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 3/15/2010, 5:40 pm

I would post as though they were two different posts, though separate them using either a triple space.



or a hard line break.




which can be added to any message by typing [ hr ] closer together.
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Corvus31 on 4/15/2010, 10:02 am

@.@ finally! some rp guidelines

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by Vandal on 7/16/2010, 9:16 pm

1

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Why Most Original Characters Aren't Good Characters

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 11/21/2010, 8:09 pm

Let me tell you why most OCs aren't good characters.

People expect other people to care about their characters simply because they're their characters. People aren't going to care about your character unless you give them a reason to care about your character, most people don't do that, and frankly I'm getting tired of pretending like I don't see it. A dramatically few number of people here actually seem to posses the ability to make good roleplay original characters. 'Awesomeness' or 'Epicness' the latter of which I would like to point out is not even a word, is not found with what your character has, can, will, or wants to do. Actions are not what people care about, actions are a means to an end. They are half the coin if even that.

Motive, motivation, reason, the purpose that drives the action. That is the other half. Batman is not cool because he's a rich guy with a lot of gadgets and an obsessive personality. No. If you said that your character was a rich guy with a lot of gadgets, which he makes himself, who's parents were murdered, by a random criminal, so he became dark and broody and decided to fight crime. I would hate you. That is not a good character. It's an abomination and should be put down at the first opportunity. Also for the record. Searching for something, wanting to find something out about yourself, looking for a reason. IS NOT ACCEPTABLE EITHER. I am getting very tired of these 'and now she just wants to do good' or not be mocked or treated like an outcast.

If your character is not blue fuzzy has pointed ears and a dramatic amount of tattoos, and/or uncontrolled powers, your character has Zero reason to be treated like an outcast. Superman is not 'afraid' of people finding out he has powers, heck if you actually read the comics he openly told his first girlfriend he was an alien from outer space with a god mode on life long before he ever wore a cape. Also, she didn't run away screaming, because honestly how many people would? Sure they might question your sanity a little at first but the ability to life a barn should pretty much cure that, and if you're ballsy enough to tell someone you have powers under what circumstance would you not show them you have powers? Answer: Because you're an idiot.

And that brings me to another thing I've wanted to rant about. Show don't tell. This is a good line for any author anywhere ever. If I say. "And then they kissed." Then who cares, sure it gets the job done but it's no fun whatsoever. Fun is the point of life, or at least the closet thing I've found. So do things the fun way. Even if it's more work. Work does not have to be not Fun. I'm getting tired of people whining about how they don't wanna do this or that because it sounds like it'd be hard. Suck it up, life is hard, deal with it. But if you do things the right way then you might get to have some fun along the way. "A held B in his arms, looking deep into her silver eyes as the sunset reflected off them. A felt a sudden flutter jump up in his gut as he tentatively leaned in toward her, uncertainty filling his head, while warmth filled his heart." Is much more fun than "and then they kissed." It's more descriptive, it's more action, it provides more information, including what A is doing, what time it is, what color B's eyes are, what A is feeling, and what A is thinking. That was two sentences it's not that hard to write two sentences so do it.

Back to Batman, as I said if you just call him a moody guy with money and gadgets, he doesn't sound like that much fun now does he? But Batman is more than that. Batman is a boy who lost his parents, and then wanted desperately to do something to keep other people from experiencing the same tragedy. Notice that there is nothing particularly special about this situation. Boy loses parents, plenty of people lose their parents, and few people would wish such on other people. Now in Batman's case, he has the ability to do something about it, he has lots and lots of money, and Alfred who honestly is probably partly to blame for Bruce's issues. Being a supportive family member usually stops at the flying to Asian countries to join a secret society of assassins for training. But Alfred is an enabler, so Bruce gets to spend his childhood being unhappy and training to take vengeance for his parents. This is where it branches from normality, normally Alfred would've probably said no to the flying to the Asian countries, maybe hired a Kendo instructor for the manor, and Bruce would've grown up to be a world champion Kendo fighter, and there would be no Batman.

What does this mean for you? It means that a completely original completely new, completely unrealistic origin story. Completely Unrealistic is Bad. Yes it's fine to be creative, but when you character was abandoned in the wilderness and raised by wolves so they learned to speak to animals and some how learned English along the way because apparently all people have to be able to speak English to be people, you FAIL. I know it's hard to make Teen Heroes, but WHO EVER said your character has to be the same age as you?

"But but, I don't know how to be a 34 year old!!"

Who cares!? You don't know how to be a 16 year old plant controlling fairy either! And if you do, then something is either seriously wrong with you, or get off your butt and start saving the world for real. I mean you don't even have to be a Teen to be 'Teen' Titan. Cyborg's like twenty four, and by the time Slade's daughter is actually born, Speedy got addicted to drugs and had a kid with a female assassin, plus Dick is like 24 by then so Cyborg's got to be almost forty.

So stop it with the 14 yearolds. Particular if their parents are still alive. I don't care how powerful your character is, Martha and her husband didn't let Clark off the farm until he was at least twenty, and he's Superman. Also if your character's parents are dead, it's okay to talk about it, it is Not okay to whiny about it. "oh woe my parents are dead wha wha wha." Cry me a river, but on a quiet Sunday night with a nice little something curled up on your arm talking about how her father's the personification of the evil of her people, it's okay to mention that you never knew your father, or your mother, or any of your family.

Depth people Depth! Depth is a good thing! Here's an idea. Character: Invincible Man. Power: Invulnerable to everything. Depth: He's never felt pain, physical or emotional. He can't empathize with people at all, he doesn't know why people feel fear, or doubt or lock themselves in their room for a week after getting dumped. He comes off as a callous jerk who doesn't care about anyone but himself, but, and here's the kicker, he knows that. He's not hurt by people's opinion of him, because he literally can't be, but he does wonder what it would be like to be normal. He's only ever seen one side of the coin, he doesn't know why people say he's lucky. He just knows that he has to try really hard to be nice to people who are suffering, because he can't see suffering, he can't recognize pain. He just sees weakness.

There, in like ten seconds, I just came up with a character who can simultaneously kick butt on the front line of combat, and at the same time spend paragraph after paragraph talking about how his powers make his life a living hell, and the best part? He can't whine about it, it's not in him to whine, he doesn't feel suffering or self loathing or inner turmoil or anything like that. He just knows that people don't like him because of the way he acts, and he acts the way he does because he's never felt pain. The player can parcel together how that affects him, but the point is, he's a man and he has feelings too. He's the whole package.

I really don't see why that's so hard for people, and I'm not just talking about people here. People everywhere seem to have this issue and I for the life of me can't figure out why. That's a pretty decent character, and has plenty of chances for interesting interactions. Say he gets into a relationship with oh say, anyone, then they get hurt. He's forced to just stand there helplessly as strong and powerful as he is completely unable to relate to what his friend/girlfriend/comrade/lover is going through. Perfectly good motivation for him to go off, find whomever hurt who ever, and pound them into next Tuesday.

Why Don't People Get that?! It drives me batty. Characters, People need reasons to do things. People don't just share their feelings for whatever reason, they don't just go out and smash the city for no reason. Even Slade has reasons for doing what he does, and knowing them all the more interesting. Slade wants a son to live up to his reputation, he's driven by love, he doesn't think what he's doing is wrong. The Best Villains, Don't Think They're Doing Anything Wrong.

O wait. I forgot, no one MAKES VILLAINS! What's wrong!? Why no love for the evil guys? They get to do things so much better than the good guys. Batman's 90% villain, Superman has at least 20% in him.

"Batman, okay, but Superman's not a villain what are you talking about?"

Oh yeah!? Ever seen him when he gets really angry? The guy is demi god when he gets pissed he tears things up, he can literally rain fire from the skies. He's a legend for really messing things up when he loses his temper, and the best part? He's not even mad at the people he's taking his anger out on. Ya'll know I'm a Darkseid fan. Well the only time I've ever seen someone actually die in a superman cartoon is because of Darkseid. Dan Turpin, think of him as Metropolis Commissioner Gordon. Darkseid Omega Beams him into vapor and Superman doesn't get a chance to stop it. Darkseid then disappears back to Apokolips and Superman begins beating the living hell out of an Apokoliptian tank. Guess what, sure he'd be wailing on Darkseid if he had a chance, and sure he's mad at Darkseid, historically Superman hates Darkseid with a murderous rage, not because he killed Dan, but because he made Superman kill people. Made him use his powers for evil. Superman hates Darkseid because he showed him how easy it would be to do evil, he made him do the one thing he swore never to do, and then he proved that even when he is good, he's not strong enough to protect everyone, and killed a good close friend of his.

I would like to point out that Superman doesn't go wine about how he's not strong enough, or how people hate him, he wines about how he could never make up for what he's done. None of this 'woe is me' a healthy amount of 'I've done terrible things' but not a lot of 'woe is me.' Woe is me is not depth. Depth is how you deal with problems, 'woe is me' is you complaining about your problems.

Now go and use what I've said here to improve yourselves.

This has been an annual rage dump by TheDeceiverGod, heed it or feel my fury!


Last edited by TheDeceiverGod on 11/22/2010, 5:46 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by archiesangel on 11/21/2010, 10:54 pm

Hey mind if I e-mail this rant to a friend? She has issues with OCs and I really think this will help her.
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 11/22/2010, 5:40 pm

Go ahead, spread it, spread it like the plague.
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by SnowFallsSlow on 11/22/2010, 6:30 pm

All good points, TDG. You seem to have a knack for spelling out what I'm thinking in more concrete terms than I usually do.

To remark on something: "It means that a completely original completely new, completely unrealistic origin story. Completely Unrealistic is Bad."

You're saying, then, to take a semi-ordinary situation, i.e., parents dying, and to limit yourself to one creative and unrealistic twist on it, i.e. Alfred the enabler?

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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by archiesangel on 11/22/2010, 9:10 pm

TheDeceiverGod wrote:Go ahead, spread it, spread it like the plague.

Thank you! I shall >:D
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 11/22/2010, 10:28 pm

SnowFallsSlow wrote:All good points, TDG. You seem to have a knack for spelling out what I'm thinking in more concrete terms than I usually do.

To remark on something: "It means that a completely original completely new, completely unrealistic origin story. Completely Unrealistic is Bad."

You're saying, then, to take a semi-ordinary situation, i.e., parents dying, and to limit yourself to one creative and unrealistic twist on it, i.e. Alfred the enabler?

Yes, Completely unrealistic, is bad. Good characters are relate-able characters, people are able to relate to wanting some revenge for having their parents murdered, and they look kindly upon Alfred for giving Bruce what he wanted at the time. It's important to remember that people don't always know what's good for them. Bruce wanted to go cockeyed and crazy in training to take revenge for his parents, and Alfred let him, a good parent probably would've reeled him in a little, but Al was also feeling the pain of having just lost Bruce's parents, for whatever they meant to him, so even though he did do something that wasn't realistic per-say. He had a reason to do so. Which goes back to people needing reasons to do anything.
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by archiesangel on 11/23/2010, 9:08 pm

Hey Deciever mah friend says "Thanks!" and that she appreciates your ranty-ness. She found it very informative and helpful
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Re: Role Playing Education

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 11/25/2010, 4:28 pm

I do what I can.
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An undue apology

Post by TheDeceiverGod on 11/25/2010, 5:33 pm

For the record, I was never actually mad at anyone, though some of you seem to think I was, and seem to have been hurt by what I said. I was just tired of having to pretend like I don't see these things that people could be doing so much better if they just tried a little. I mean it's hard for me not to go on 'angry' rants like that every once in a while because I end up feeling like people don't get the purpose of my day to day, and particularly with the holiday season coming up, lets just say the rampant materialism puts me in a foul mood.

You come from a bit of a unique prospective on the whole thing Mercy, and you have to respect that, because I honestly believe that you're one of the Writers with the most potential here. You've actually improved upon how you started. Your characters get better every time you play them, and though you may try to over-extend yourself a little, reaching for things beyond your grasp isn't a bad thing, at least not as I see it. I say Writer, because that's all a role player really is, it's someone who either creates or adopts a character and then attempts to writer their actions out in a believable realistic way.

I just get tired of doing and saying things day in and day out and it having no effect. For how long have I been here and been trying to improve the way people do things? I mean when someone does something that is blatantly stupid, I think someone should have the guts to call them out on it. And I don't think I actually hurt anyone's feelings by doing and saying what I did, because most of it was true, in retrospect some of it may have been a little colored by my frustration with the world at the time, but I certain don't think Karma was ever directly offended. I suppose Robin may have, but she never said anything to me, and has she had, I would've gladly apologized then and there and attempted to explain my frustrations in a more acute manner, but in a way, that's what I was being so frustrated with.

If people have a problem they should say so. I get tired of pretending like everything is okay, that everyone here has nothing they could possibly do to improve the quality of life on the forum, or the fun of the role plays here. Sure they're better than most and I can take some solace in the fact that my regular encouragement to do better may have had some effect, but it's not as good as it could be, and sometimes I feel like no one here actually sees or respects that. There are days when I feel like everyone else is blind deaf and dumb. You have to admit that there is a wide range of 'talent' regarding people's writing here, and some days it feels like no one is ever going to get any better. That drives my up a wall. I simply do not understand why people are content with things, when they know they could be better. Maybe it's just the way I was raised, or because I'm capable of it with relative ease, but I absolutely believe that if you're going to do something, and you have absolute control over it, then it should be absolutely the best you can make it.

Everyone is supposed to be capable of the same things right? That's what we're raised to believe, all men are created equal. Well if that's the case then why is it that some people, such as myself, are so much better at things than the majority of everyone else?! I don't want to be this much better a writer/role player/person than other people. I don't want to have to look at a one sentence post and see all the thing it left out, all the ways it could have been better.

Remember Demios, the Yellow Lantern I created, and the Green Lantern Bloodless had? Remember how we were only in that role play for like ten days before we left? That hurt us. We we really looking forward to role playing with the rest of you, we made up these characters, and we really wanted to use them, to have fun with you guys, but in the course of however long we were there, it became painfully apparent that that wasn't going to happen. Something that sticks out in my mind is, someone, I forget who, attached their character to Demios, their character couldn't fly, and Demios could... This person clearly just wasn't thinking... I gave them two or three chances to jump off and try something else, but they either didn't see it, or refused to believe that, a wolf, I think they were some kind of were-wolf hero thing, couldn't bite through a power-ring shield aura... which is stupid, there's no other word for it. If I remember correctly in the course of three post I had Demios ascend into the air. A smart person would realize that if they can't fly, holding onto someone who can as they get higher and higher, would be a bad idea, even if you had a chance of breaking through their defenses. Ultimately even if you killed the person, you'd still have no way to get back down, and Lanterns are capable of flying into space with their power rings. Space is a bad place to be if you need to breathe, and can't fly. That's why I took three posts to get Demios above the sky line, that's why I gave them the occasional chance to hope off onto a passing building, that's why I tried to make it perfectly clear that teeth, not enhanced by any sort of super-power or alien physiology, had no chance of breaking through a recently-recharged power ring's aura, and for the record, recently-recharged happen 'on screen' Demios arrived, recharged his ring, and then went out to introduce himself to the city, via causing mass panic.

I just get sick and tired of the people, and not just the ones here, who pretend like everything is fine and dandy because it's all for fun. Just because it's all for fun doesn't mean you couldn't do it better, or that you shouldn't do it better. I don't understand what was so offensive about simply saying that.




While I'm on the subject though I suppose I should take the opportunity to point out that, all characters are not created equal. Batman is never going to be able to beat Superman in a fist fight. Zatanna is never going to be able to out magic Dr. Fate. There are some characters which are simply on a different level than other characters. That's part of the the fun. If Darkseid is attacking the city, and your character can't do anything but throw smoke bombs at him then it's time for you to do something less direct. Batman is not a super hero because of his belt, he's a hero because of his brain. He doesn't defeat villains by pounding them into the ground, regardless of what recent media depictions of him may have lead you to believe. He's "The World's Greatest Detective" when something is going on that he has zero chance of standing up against directly, he doesn't stand up against it directly. He sneaks, he lurks, he finds out what that thing is, where it came from, and anything else he can about it, and then tries to figure out a way to defeat it. He's the kind of guy who'd notice that Green Lantern's barrier failed to stop banana-pudding from breaking through during a food fight, and he might not comment on that at the moment. But if he ever has to face a Green Lantern in battle, he might have a yellow spray paint can just encase, or maybe he just grabs a yellow-street sign and cracks the guy over the head with it. He'd probably be smart enough to figure out that if Green Lanterns have a color-weakness it would stand to reason that other lanterns have other color-weaknesses.

He doesn't have to stand on the front line against Metallo to win the fight, he can just drop an EMP bomb from the Batwing, knock out half the city in the process and then rip the kryptonite out of his chest. He might even be sneaky enough to lure Metallo out personally, and have Robin drop the bomb from the Batwing.

The point is, that when making your character, pay attention to how powerful and how weak you're making them. If you want to make a Batman-esque character, then you need to be prepared for the eventuality that you will encounter another character who you have no ability to fight directly. If you ask me, that's when it gets really fun. You've probably noticed, I don't like big smack down brawls, I seldom have my characters engage in battle at all. That's because battles are boring, particularly if you're playing without health or hit-rates. If someone wanted to they could go an entire fight with Slade without taking or throwing a single blow. The entire thing would just be dialogue and dancing, and why shouldn't it? It's not like either of them could actually win the fight. Worse case someone gets a little bloody and then runs off. Without permission to die, there's no real danger to fighting someone out of your league. Batman can stand up to Darkseid, because no matter what Darkseid's player does, he can't kill Batman without permission from Batman's player.

That's part of why I've been trying to get people interested in a Dice-Based Role Play, because you'd have to worry about your character whenever they get into a fight. Mammoth could completely randomly kill Robin if he got particularly lucky, and that would make an awesome plot-line, in some completely random skirmish with the Hive Kids, Robin is killed. The Titans have to deal with his sudden death while Mammoth/The Hive have to deal with the sudden realization that they're responsible for Robin's death. Maybe Mammoth realizes he doesn't wanna be a villain if it means killing people, but feels it's too late because he could never be forgiven for what he's done. Maybe he reaches out to Jinx, since she's a hero and she can talk to the Titans on his behalf. Maybe the Titans(Starfire) don't want to hear it and call Jinx a traitor for even suggesting it, leading Jinx to feel betrayed, and she goes back to the Hive to support Mammoth in his time of doubt. Or maybe not!

All that could come from a completely impromptu scenario, but it would take good role players to pull it off. First off Robin's player would have to be willing to lose his/her character. Mammoth's player would have to have his character react realistically to killing for the first time. The Hive Players would each have to be present and each add their own twist to Mammoth's personal quandary. Maybe Gizmo thinks it's awesome, maybe Billy's making Mammoth a trophy, maybe Kyd Wykkyd is making a list of which Titans to kill next, or maybe they're all just as shell shocked as Mammoth, and trying to get some distance from the Hive. They could each go on their own mini-adventures of self discovery, finding someone to confide in and revealing things about their past. Mammoth has a sister for example.

While at the same time the Titans could be locked in mourning, or they could be out for blood. Maybe Robin's player takes up Batman as he comes to town in a vengeful rage and tells the Titans to 'leave Mammoth to him' leaving a question as to what is going to happen to the villain when the Dark Knight finds him, and raising the question of whether or not the Titans want to stop him or not. Starfire feels the loss of her human love, and maybe remembers how she's lost other lovers to war on Tamerian, so maybe she's used to it, she doesn't mourn Robin and instead hardens herself to try to be more like him. Or maybe she goes home, runs into the arms of her Kunorfka, leaving the Titans two members down, while they deal with a Dark Knight loose in their city, and their own feelings of loss. Beast Boy remembers his Doom Patrol training, the lecture after lecture of not getting attached to one another, because they have a history of losing members or maybe goes and stalks Terra for a little while. Maybe the loss of Robin inspires the pretending Terra to take back up the mantel of Titan, rejoining the team, after a long heart to heart from Beast Boy, and admitting she never forgot her time as a Titan in the first place. Raven could lock herself in her room, having long personal monologues about what Robin meant to her as a friend, or maybe admitting a secret desire for him to have been something more, or maybe she goes blood crazy, joins Batman in his vengeance driven quest for Mammoth's head and learns she has more in common with the Dark Knight that she ever did with the Titans. Cyborg could remember losing his parents, his legendary rivalry with Robin maybe a particularly heart-string tugging moment where he beat's Robin's high score, reminiscent of that scene from the show, before he decides that everyone needs to stop moping around and he takes up the mantle of leadership in Robin's place.

And then Mammoth is caught or killed by one of various groups after him, or maybe he turns himself in tries to turn over a new leaf and genuinely repent in prison. Or maybe he's caught and sent to prison but then given capital punishment for his crimes. Mammoth get's dealt with and the Titans are forced to come to terms with the fact that they might not be able to work together without their leader.

Then the first part of the game is over, and the second part gets to begin. A year later, five years later, ten years later, Cyborg is the only one left in Jump. He's living in the old tower, doing his best to keep crime rates down, and all and all not doing too bad. The others have taken their stuff and gone, but Robin's room is left untouched, a tribute to the idea that brought them together, and the death that drove them apart. Then something happens, and Cyborg decides to check up on the others. Maybe a particularly hard rooftop chase makes him question if he can keep it up alone, maybe a casual run in with Mumbo reminds him of how things used to be.

Maybe Slade's back in town, back from beyond the grave Slade returns only to find that the Titans are disbanded, and his favorite apprentice is dead. Far from upset however, Slade breaks Mammoth out of prison, and adopts him as his new apprentice, but this time rather than motivating through fear or manipulation Slade does so through love, and has also adopted Mammoth's little sister, plucked from the streets where she lived since Mammoth's arrest she now resides in luxury with Wintergreen at the Wilson estate, as long as Mammoth does what Slade asks. Or maybe Mammoth's dead, either murdered or put to death, and Slade adopts his younger sister Shimmer to prepare her for revenge against the Titans. Maybe his attacks force the estranged members to reunite to deal with an old foe, or maybe he prepares his apprentice by sending her after Mammoth's old team members, the Hive, maybe their deaths go remarkable unnoticed until recently re-reformed villain Jinx is struck down. Maybe her death causes Cyborg to look into it more, and meets up with the others to track down 'the hive killer.'

Maybe Beast Boy's back with the Doom Patrol, doing what he can there. Maybe Terra tried to join him for sometime in a well meaning attempt to make up for past mistakes, but his inability to forgive her drove them back apart. Maybe Raven's off in Gotham being Batman's new sidekick having altered her costume to reflect a darker more closed off prospective on life, or maybe she left Batman, seeing exactly why Robin hated him so, and joined The Oracle, The Huntress and Black Canary as part of the Gotham City Birds of Prey offering them the occasional magical consult while staying majority out of the field. Or maybe she left the hero business to join part-time Titan Zatara as a Broadway magician. Maybe she's working as his assistant 'bunny' having learned how to fake it well enough to pass for normal, while seeing similarity between her and Zatara in that neither of them want to get attached to things just to have them leave. Or maybe someone wants to play Zatara, and when Cyborg comes to call Zatara offers both his and Raven's assistance, motivated by the fact that though he tries not to get attached to things, he's fallen for Raven and longs for her to look at him as he does her, so he hopes that reconnecting with the Titans might help her see that somethings are worth holding onto.

Maybe Starfire's been living on Tameran since the Titan disbanded, and she's since learned to embrace Tamerean philosophy that being kind is being weak, becoming a harden warrior queen who spends her time leading her armies and making the Gordainians pay for their crimes against her and her people while leaving the more tender things to Galfor, or maybe even Blackfire. Maybe Blackfire has been hurt by the news of Robin's death, turning her to think of others before herself, and she's become the softer sister. Maybe when Cyborg comes to call Starfire refuses, and Blackfire accepts.

Maybe the new team returns, only to be attacked by Shimmer and Slade, untrained and unused to working together they fail to defeat the villains, and while some members leave claiming it a mistake to try to make the Titans again, other members persist. Maybe Zatara, in an uncharacteristic display of passion refuses to allow Raven to leave the Titans again. Maybe the duel in a fantastic display of magical power. Maybe Zatara wins and exhausted he calls Raven a fool for ever leaving the Titans, admits to envying her time with them, and claims he'd do anything to have his own time as a Titan back. Or Maybe Raven wins, clearly the superior sorcerer Zatara falls to his knees before her, tired and broken, he admits his love for her and admits he only wanted her to return to the Titans so she might smile at him even once. Maybe his words touch her, and they go back to the Titans together, maybe they fall on deaf ears and a cold heart and Raven refuses to ever go back or maybe she simply doesn't believe she can anymore.

Maybe Beast Boy and Terra have a similar result, maybe they don't. Maybe none of this happens at all, maybe all of it does and infinitely more.

It could all be yours, if only you open yourself up to it and work for it! Anyone of those scenes would be heart string gold, but it would have to be well written, and carefully written. I don't mean written with caution, but written with care. Verbs would need to be cherry picked, the lighting would have to be mentioned, you'd be painting us a picture, not telling us a story... Show, don't Tell. Make us Feel their pain, their rage, or their confusion, but make us feel it all the same!

PS: Do you have any idea what it's like walking around with stories like that rattling around my head, and knowing that I have No Place where it could be properly done?


Last edited by TheDeceiverGod on 11/25/2010, 7:01 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Post Script)
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