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New Roleplay World?

Discussion in 'Ask the Staff' started by Nimue, Dec 21, 2014.

  1. Nimue

    Nimue Auror

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    Not sure if this is the right place for this, but Sheila suggested that I put something up here.

    I was looking at the roleplay board and saw that it's been a while since a new world was started. I've got an idea, and I'm not really into d20-based rping, so I thought I'd give it a shot. I know I'm new, but I've GM'd a few roleplays on other forums, and I love doing it. I would totally understand if there's a minimum rank or activity requirement for starting a new roleplay, thought!

    The basic concept is part Skyrim, part LotR, and part Eragon/Dragonriders of Pern. Derivative? Absolutely! But I've found that a) it's often easier for people to write together in a world that feels familiar, and b) roleplaying should be an outlet for those unoriginal but indulgently enjoyable ideas that we try to keep out of our serious writing, right? ;)

    The rp would not involve dice-rolling, but be a more writing-heavy attempt to weave a story together. It would start out small, atmospheric, and character-focused, and then perhaps sprawl into something more epic. Here's a summary of the world background:


    YSGARD : THE DRAGONS' CHOSEN
    --​

    For two hundred years, the men of Ysgard have been enslaved by the elves of the North. The elven sorcerers draw unholy magic from ancient souls--dead elves, wizards, and, greatest in magic, the extinct dragons. With this stolen power, they have created an kingdom of ice and fear, reaching from their homeland of Yvalheim across once-free Ysgard, even into the wood elves' realm of Iridhe and the peaceful valleys of the Ettarlands.

    In the midst of this dark winter, a miracle came from the gods. A young man named Farrun Ramshorn discovered a dragon egg in the hinterland mountains, and the egg woke for him. Thoros, the first dragon to live in over two hundred years, was born. This event sparked new hope for the men of Ysgard, and woke the sleeping embers of rebellion. For a dragonrider is a powerful weapon against sorcery, and a resilient symbol.

    The resistance turned to war. The time was right, for in the east the imperial elves of Auroë, who had sailed from the lands beyond the sea no more than a century ago, were retaking the Ettarlands and challenging the claims of the Yvalhyn in the name of their powerful living gods, whose teachings called for justice and freedom from oppression. Fighting bitterly with the encroaching Auroë, the Yvalhyn elves lost ground to the rebellion in Ysgard, who were aided by the wood elves to the south. After eight years of fighting, the free men captured most of the western holds, including the Hintercrown, which in ancient times had been the capital city of Ysgard. They called these lands the Western Kingdom, and named as their ruler Hala Svora, the Wolf Queen, and her champion was Farrun Dragonrider.

    For five years, a stalemate as thin as spring ice has settled over the Western Kingdom. The weary but battle-hardened fighting army of men still makes forays to free settlements on the border, but the Yvalhyn sorcerers have strengthened their defenses. Skirmishes are costly. But throughout the new kingdom, rumors have spread of dragons in the mountains. Old lore says that it was the Yvalhyn elves' use of dragon souls in their necromantic practices that drove the dragons away and sent their hidden eggs to sleep--and that the presence of a living dragon may revive them.

    On the word of this legend, Farrun Dragonrider and his great bronze dragon Thoros have set off to the far western mountains to find if any dragons yet live, or if their eggs can be uncovered. He brings with him a small group of those loyal to the queen and the free lands--candidates for the lifelong bond of a dragonrider.

    --​

    That's the initial premise, at any rate. Where the story goes from there would be worked out collaboratively, although I have a few ideas. I would be playing a pair of characters, one of who would be Farrun Dragonrider, who would double as a sort of GM's NPC for scene-setting and important business.

    Is anybody else interested? Would it be worth it to ask for a dedicated subforum?
     
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  2. Philster401

    Philster401 Maester

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    I'd do it but I've only ever done a simplified RPG but i'd would love to do another one.
     
  3. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    We've had some cool RPGs in the past that were done without die-rolling. Two I can think of off the top of my head are Endless Hunt and Shenoka Shadows. It happens that everyone who's run an RPG is either a mod now or on the article team now, but I know I'm not the only one here who ran an RPG without mod status.

    In other words, no you don't need any kind of "rank" to run an RPG. You just need players. An appropriate thread to start your game in would be Mythic Archipelago.
     
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  4. Nimue

    Nimue Auror

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    Oh, it's good to know that there've been less dice-y rps in the past. I'm not sure that what I'm thinking of would be appropriate for the Mythic Archipelago setting, though. I'm envisioning something more along the lines of a large landmass, with expectations for the lands around it (the Auroe, which are based on the Mongolian Empire, other human cultures in lands to the west), and it would be good to be able to come up with an independent world...

    Whether or not this rp gets off the ground (I'll send a message to Black Dragon, who I'm told would need to be involved to set this up?) it might be a good alternative to have a subforum in Mythic Worlds for "Other Roleplay" or something where people could just toss up one- or two-thread roleplay worlds, smaller endeavors, maybe.
     
  5. Philster401

    Philster401 Maester

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    I like that idea. By the way Nimue maybe you could make a map of the world or at least of part if one.
     
  6. Nimue

    Nimue Auror

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    Oh, I think I would, given a bit of time. My maps tend to be rather wiggly, though: for example. With bonus sea serpent :p
     
  7. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    Yeah, if BD's up for creating a new forum (or sub forum), that's fine too.
     
  8. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

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    Starting a new forum is kind of a big ask. But there's actually a "Groups" section in the site which you could use for projects like this one.

    http://mythicscribes.com/forums/group.php

    It's a little buried in the navigation, so to pull it off you'll need to promote your project in a thread like this one and in your signature. And there are other things you can do, like running a challenge, pairing it with one of the existing d20 games as a side project, or starting a more casual thread like the Intergalactic Cantina that used to be a thing. But if you get a few people on board, the Groups section should have all the tools you need to run a game.
     
  9. Nimue

    Nimue Auror

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    That's how I feel about it too, hence the alternate suggestion for a general rp subforum... The only reason I've asked is because that seems to be the way that rp projects are done around here.

    I didn't even realize groups were a thing! How do you get to them from the forum homepage? That would be really useful, since it looks like you can do threads within a group...but like you say, it isn't really visible at all. If the rp was solely in group format, I doubt it would find any new players after it was started... But it is something to think about. I'll poke around.
     
  10. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

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    I think it used to be easier. But up at the top, under the main "Forum" tab, there's a row of links beginning with "Activity Stream" and "New Posts." If you click on "Community," you'll find "Groups" as a drop down.

    But the key to making it work would be getting players here in the forum, linking to your group directly in your signature, and getting your players to do the same.
     
  11. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    Sounds like an excellent notion.

    One suggestion from experience: you may need to beat prospective participants over the head with the notion that there's no dice-rolling involved. Some people seem to have difficulty reconciling their notion of "game" with a notion of "moderated collective storytelling."

    The problem with having an "other" subforum under the existing Worlds forum is that most games tend to run multiple threads (at a minimum, one for in-game action and one for out-of-game discussion), which on the one hand you want to keep all together and on the other you don't want crossing over other games and becoming confusing for participants in every game involved. So even an "other" subforum would require its own child forums in the end.

    "Groups" may well be a good place to launch it. If it looks like it's going to warrant a child forum in which to gather multiple threads, you can always ask BD to create one then, and move the existing threads to it. (Though check with him first. I can't recall how simple it is to relocate threads with the platform he's using–some make it simple, others highly annoying. He may be happier just creating the subforum up front.) If nothing else, you can use "Groups" to work out a roster of interested parties, even if you don't begin play there.

    And, no, the Archipelago is not a gaming forum, so unless one were to use the Archipelago as a game setting (which would not be at all a bad idea…), that would not be the place to locate it.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
  12. Nimue

    Nimue Auror

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    Haha! Well, I've had some practice beating people over the head with rping etiquette. ^^ It definitely won't be a game about hitpoints and loot, that's for sure.

    The way multithread rping was done on another forum I was part of was to just have an OOC and a Story thread, and all of the worldbuilding would get put up in the first post of the OOC thread, bios linked to from there, etc. It was easy enough to keep track of just those two threads in a busy rping subforum. But I do like the idea of the subforum here because you can have more discussion/questions on the worldbuilding threads, start more conversations about the rp, and it would undoubtedly be easier to read.

    I've asked Black Dragon about it, and he said he could post an announcements thing and see how much interest there is in the idea, and if there is he'll make a subforum. So if you are interested, let me know. :) I'll try and write up more about the world and how the thread would be run, solidify things a bit.
     
  13. Philster401

    Philster401 Maester

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    I like i said before would love to do one.
     
  14. Nimue

    Nimue Auror

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    Gotcha, but we'll probably need more than two people :p
     
  15. Philster401

    Philster401 Maester

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    Good point
     
  16. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    I'm curious about how the game works. I mean, is it one of those deals where you can have combat, but both writers need to have a consensus on the outcome? I normally like to play heroic types in RPGs, so for me personally, I expect some action or some ability to make a difference in the world (which can be accomplished heroically but not necessarily through violence).

    Shenoka Shadows and Endless Hunt were both no-dice RPGs that I enjoyed. In Endless Hunt, one player had an army, and his men were being picked off by the enemy. In Shenoka Shadows, my assassin was a decent killer and I was working with the GM (getting permission to kill some "Red Plumes" to get on a major NPC's good side) and another player (whose character made poisons).

    Looking back at my Shenoka posts, I appear to be guilty of blatant godmodding. In fact, the other player and I agreed to how our characters would interact, but for decorum it may have been better to let the dialogue exchange slowly play out over a few posts. Or maybe what we did was fine.

    I think when you run this game, you might want to let prospective players know how interactions should work. Example:
    1. Only post your own characters words and actions, even if another player agreed to how a conversation would go.
    2. Combat is limited to player-vs.-NPC; no player-vs.-player, please.
    3. When interacting with NPCs, post your attempted actions. The GM will determine whether you succeed or fail.
    4. Player characters don't die, unless the player gives consent.
    5. A player can only control one character.

    I'm not suggesting you use those 5 rules (and, in fact, I don't think rule #5 has applied to any RPG on this site–there's always been at least one player with multiple PCs), but what I am saying is stuff like this being clarified up front may be helpful in terms of managing expectations.

    I'd definitely like to see a no-dice RPG with emphasis on writing succeed here, so I hope to see more players express interest.
     
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  17. Nimue

    Nimue Auror

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    There would definitely be combat involved, and of course god-modding would be an issue. (Although it also crops up frequently outside of combat as well, often when somebody wants to make sure their character is perceived as impressive or attractive and starts writing that someone else's character was impressed or attracted! Rather lazy, that.)

    I'll have to write up some extensive rules, which would extend into rp etiquette--the central tenet being give as you get, and don't make your fun come at the expense of everyone else's fun. I've rped for nearly a decade in writing-heavy, non-dice-based settings, and seen, uh, a lot of what can go wrong. But also seen it done very well!

    As for your rules: (Very useful input, thank you!)

    Absolutely. I've bent this rule, but only when the players were already friends and trusted each other implicitly.
    This is definitely something you want to avoid unless all of the parties are experienced and communicate well with each other. However, I think it can be done. Just carefully, with people you don't know very well.
    This is one point where I think the play-styles diverge. In a writing-based rp (as I've experienced it) the role of the GM is rather reduced. While permission and discussion should be had about major events, people generally just post what their character is doing IC, without clearing it beforehand. Then the GM (if it's an NPC/monster/the environment) or the other player if it's their character, posts IC with the result. If things are contentious, discussion may be had and posts might need to be revised, but that's pretty rare. Overall, the theme is one of rolling with the punches--write with whatever is given to you. RPG points or things aren't at stake, so I think you get to be a little more flexible.

    Another difference (I think) is that this kind of rp is less about individual characters making interactions in the hopes of getting something out of it, achieving some goal, but it's more about weaving characters together. In that way, there is no right action, nothing that will get a better outcome out of an NPC or send you down the more rewarding path. What we're looking for is a good story, and what will get you that is more subtle and harder to grasp...

    Possibly the most important and never-broken rule! I'd extend that to major injuries and character changes. In the kind of game I'd be running, even the GM would need to get permission before wounding somebody. More likely, they wouldn't be wounding anyone, the player would decide that their character gets wounded themselves
    A good starting point, although once things get rolling, particularly if it's a small game, more characters are welcome. I'd say that players should only be playing as many characters as they can handle, and preferably fewer, since lapses in activity happen. :p


    Besides all that good stuff, the essential element is players that can all write together--people that are a good fit, that are flexible and creative with the story. To that end, I would be requiring character profile approvals, to screen for the basic rp problems--characters that are unbelievably heroic and ideal (and essentially don't require any other character to save the day forever, so why are they going to be part of a collaborative story??) or lots of spelling and grammatical errors, or very minimal effort. We could work on profiles as needed, but there will be an approval or a denial in the end.

    The second bit would be a sort of three-strike process for people god-modding or dominating play or replying with one line of text when they were given something paragraphs long and complex... etc. First or second strike, there would be input about what's going wrong, we could work on it, but if the person still isn't improving, they would be asked to leave the game. I've seen too many rp threads be ruined by one person being either thoughtless or deliberately contrary. :/
     
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  18. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    I like where you're going with this. I've definitely seen the "unbelievably heroic" in one game. A player wrote his character with anime ninja abilities. He was injured, but managed to wall-jump his way up thirty feet onto "the rafters." …just to be awesome, I guess, since his weapon of choice was a sword. I think he went up there to say something scary to the bad guys then he jumped down and killed them. Oh, and make that two swords. So, no free hand and the injury was in the leg. When reminded of the injury, he edited his post to say he performed that acrobatic feat "with difficulty."

    The three strikes rule sounds like a good way to let people know not to do stuff like that. I think you make it pretty clear that you want combat, when it happens, to be interesting. So as the player, I'd know up front my character will survive, but I'd write the struggle and the GM weighs in and may or may not give my PC a challenge or dilemma, or the surprise twist could be a pleasant one, if I understand correctly.
     
  19. Gryphos

    Gryphos Auror

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    Sounds interesting. I've been involved with some non-dice RPs in the past and had a load of fun, so If one's starting here you can count me in.
     
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  20. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    My Addison Lane character is a huntress who is interested in beast-riding. I could see her wanting to learn a thing or two from the dragon rider. I'd gladly play this as her, since she's the only one in her group that I haven't played in someone else's RPG.
     
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