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Author Topic: Lucien Kane's RP advice and help thread  (Read 3430 times)
Master Lucien Kane
Resident Master
Knight Commander

Force Alignment: 296
Posts: 3811

Jedi Knight of the Old Republic

« on: January 12, 2014, 07:23:55 PM »

Hey everyone I just wanted to post some of my thoughts and ruminations on good RP and what goes into it, and what can help everyone have a better RP experience. This is merely my observations from years of doing SW RP, and what I've found works and doesn't work.

So please read, enjoy and discuss!

RP tips and tricks

General guidelines for Player to Player interactions.

1. Great RP takes time: You're going to have to wait for people to post. There are instances where this rule is flexible, when players become inactive for long periods of time, but generally if you enter a conversation or scene with another player, finish it out don't just leave.
2. Hate the character not the player: This is something I've seen a lot of, people get very personal with their characters, which there's nothing wrong with. RP is supposed to be an escape from reality, but when you get so irritated with a character that you hate the person playing that character... its time to take a step back and cool off. For instance, Drake Kessel, my smuggler character in the  late GCW is a womanizing party animal putting it mildly. He's absolutely the character you just love to hate. He's such an arse about practically everything. Incredibly fun character to write. If you play a female character in the GCW and Drake meets you, and you're attractive... Drake will make a move... Probably two or three or ten. The guy doesn't take a hint. My point is this, just because Drake is making a pass at you, doesn't mean I would, I'm playing a character, I'm just acting through written word. Don't take it personal.
3. Pick up on hints: GM's experienced RP'ers, and other players are going to try and help you out in the game. Good writers aren't just going to say “Here is the solution to your problem!!!” No we're going to come in with a subtle post that gives you the option to act on that. I've seen so many missed opportunities in RP where a character was in a tight spot and a GM tried to help but the player just ignored said help... I guarantee your GM is on the other side of the computer bashing their heads into the keyboard.
4. Don't be a jerk: Specifically what I mean by this is give a character a chance to respond. Every action in the RP creates an open opportunity, if a character creates a diversion, give the other player a chance to react before you lock the situation down. I've seen scenarios where characters were given incredible chances to improve their situation but didn't get to because they were at work or not able to post... Same with combat, if you enter into combat with another player, the PM feature should be your first bet... Map out the fight... don't detail it incredibly, but talk vaguely, who's going to win? How do you decide this? If there's an argument bring in a GM. The other option is to creatively end the fight with no clear winner. (Avengers did a fantastic job of this) Don't just stomp someone's character without their permission.
5. Character death's should always be meaningful. I don't care that you have 3 PC's, don't just start offing character's for no reason. Granted the way I RP my character's are mortal, they are capable of death. If there is a situation that I can't possibly walk away from then my character might bite the bullet. It really depends on the situation at hand. My character Lucien has walked away from places he should have died, same with Drake, and the same is true with other character's I've played, when they do die though, there's a reason for it. I don't just kill them because I'm tired of them. That's lazy writing, at least wait for a battle your player couldn't possibly walk away from. There are ways to creatively and meaningfully off your characters.

Interactions with NPC's

1. NPC's especially ones ran by the GM's are not playable characters, I'm not saying don't waste their time, but also don't make the GM or player's NPC hold your hand through the entire scenario. That gets old fast, and if the GM or player has other characters to run you might be either distracting them from getting to you, or they'll neglect your posts to keep things going. Obviously follow other RP rules, but you shouldn't usually be having one line posts with NPCs give them a little more to react to so that they can move the plot at pivotal points. If you need to don't be afraid to use the PM feature to talk to the person you're in the scenario with.
2. Don't kill people's NPC's without their permission. Troops on the battlefield, fine, your nameless henchmen, okay, but don't be cutting through important NPC's without first consulting the creator of said NPC.
3. NPC coordination, can be metagaming, if you're just using NPC's left and right to fulfill your goals your writing probably isn't solid. Now there is a lot of leeway to this, as we do have to have NPCs and other characters to move our plots forward. I simply mean if you're creating NPCs at the cyclic rate, and they all bring huge advantages to you... you might be delving into a bit of metagaming.


   What is metagaming? How do we identify it? How do we avoid it? Metagaming is where you actively use information that your character couldn't possibly have to advance your status or advantage in the RP...


::Lucien Kane::

Lucien stood solemnly as the Sith Lord rose to his full height. Darth Lyrius was imposing and exuded intimidation through the force. Lucien grinned, feigning false confidence knowing the Sith Lord wasn't aware that he had two broken ribs on his right side. He walked gingerly, making sure to pace his breathing so that he wouldn't appear to be labored in his breath. As the deranged man ignited his crimson blade. Lucien returned the favor and ignited his. The battle would begin shortly.

::Darth Lyrius::

Lyrius smiled wickedly knowing Lucien's ribs had been shattered earlier in battle. When he lashed out he attacked the Jedi's left side opening up his right side for a swift kick dropping the Mandalorian to the ground. Lyrius cackled, “You can't hide anything from me Jedi!”

Okay is it metagaming that Lyrius knew of Lucien's wounds? Yes, but why? It's not that Lyrius couldn't figure out Lucien's wounds it's that he didn't post any effort in doing so... He just read Lucien's post and then responded knowing information that wasn't given IC.

So how would a proper post have looked?

Here's how I would do it if I was going to have Lyrius figure out the weakness right away.

(Lyrius smiled wickedly, he'd never seen Lucien walk this way, he wondered if the Jedi was somehow harmed in the large scale battle that had occurred just outside the hangar. He couldn't be sure. The Jedi paced his breathing and walked a little lighter, putting just a little less pressure on his right leg than his left.

Lyrius probed the Jedi's defenses noticing that the Jedi was guarding his right side more than his left he threw a powerful slash towards the Mandalorian's left side, and then spun a kick towards the Jedi's right side.)

Then Lyrius gives Lucien a chance to respond with what his character would do in that situation given the injuries and handicaps he currently has.

Does Lyrius figure it out? Yes essentially he figures out that Lucien is injured, but instead of just knowing the information for no reason, the post is far more in depth with how Lyrius figures out that Lucien isn't 100%.

This makes the RP so much more interesting and gives your players more accurate responses, as you are responding to what your character knows, not what they suspect.

I'm sure many of us can relate to a time when we KNEW someone was lying to us, but couldn't really find a way to prove it. Did you call them on it, or did you wait for more solid evidence? Obviously the answer will vary situation to situation, but if you character is acting like the know without a shadow of a doubt something that isn't expressly shown that can be metagaming. So try to find creative investigative ways to show your character's intelligence and cunning.

So a recap of sorts.

The don'ts:

1. Don't take things personally
2. Don't be a jerk
3. Don't tick off the GM's
4. Don't metagame
5. Don't kill PC's or maim them without talking to them
6. Don't kill NPC's without permission

The Do's

1. Do understand that good RP takes time
2. Do respect your GM's and fellow players, (even if your character doesn't)
3. Do make a point of using the PM feature if you're not sure how to proceed
4. Do take time to investigate other player's posts for information that you are given and information you don't have.
5. Do be clever with your posts.
6. Have fun (That's what RP is all about.)

Knight of the Consular Order
Knight Commander

Force Alignment: 690
Posts: 6031

Jedi Consular

« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2014, 07:34:08 PM »

Very well said! Thread is stickied!

May the Force be with me? Sure! It can come along!
"Lux triumphat super obscurum" - "Light triumphs over darkness"

Darth Severus
Knight Commander

Force Alignment: -141
Posts: 2824

« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2014, 10:49:56 PM »

I agree, but with one aside, your example of meta gaming, is more one of lazy story telling. Which will be called out as metagaming 9 out of ten times.

Not that I disgree, the thought process should be there unless the player is giving a speach, or needs to talk alot, most of the post should be the internal thought process, the reason behind the words should be in the post.

My oldest character Severus loves to talk, but even with him there is a ton of internal thought posting.

Long story short, (if you follow my posts an overused phrase)

If you think your charcater sees a flaw or injury detail in an internal monologue why. What your character says and does is important but what you post as to your characters motivations is just as important.

It is not the side of the force we chose, but our actions that define us.
Dark Liberator-AS
Phantasm Staff -DVA

Knight Commander

Force Alignment: -90
Posts: 2004

Power, Passion, Strength

« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2014, 08:23:44 PM »

Great post, Master Lucien! Things to keep in mind.
Scoundrels are really fun to play. :-)

Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn.

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