Hello everyone! So, with the new forums I decided it’d be a good idea to bring this thread over. I know we have a lot of newer RPers and new RPers to come in the future. This thread is to help people know how to Roleplay and how this specific community works. I’ve been on this Subforum pretty much since it began on the old forums so I think I can give some useful tips and advice for how to RP/SG here, along with the help of some others. I compiled a lot of information from other amazing RPers to create this guide so special thanks to @AwesomeAnon @TheBluGeek and @SnowyKcnomre and so many others!
HOW TO RP/SG – The Basics (Pretty much all written by AwesomeAnon but I added a few things here and there)
We’ve all experienced the feeling where you just can’t figure out what’s going on when you are here in the Roleplaying and Story Games section. In fact, if you’re reading this, you still may not. I was once in that position, but after a while I figured it out. Here’s a tutorial I have created to help all the new users understand what is going on here in the RP and SG section. Without further ado, here is the tutorial!
There are a lot of terms we use in this part of the forums, and they can be confusing. Here are some of them:
RP: Short for roleplay
SG: Short for story game
FCs: Short for faceclaims
ORP/OOC/OC: Saying something out of the roleplay as you, not your character. So when I use ORP, I am speaking as AwesomeAnon, not as my character. (ORP = Out Of RP) (OOC = Out Of Character) ORP is most commonly used in this section but both are acceptable.
Approachable: Someone can come and talk to your character.
Dead RP: An RP that people have lost interested in and have stopped posting on.
Godmod(ding): This is when someone controls someone else’s character or the RP in general without permission. This is frowned upon in our community because it makes roleplaying less enjoyable. It can also sometimes be defined as when people make characters that are extremely overpowered.
Reserving is something widely appreciated by the owner(s) of the RPs/SGs. When you reserve, you are telling the creator that you want to be in the RP/SG and will sign up as soon as possible. Reserving is easy and all you really need to do is post a comment saying “Reserve”.
Also, if there are specific roles, it is always a good idea to say which role you want to reserve for, especially if there is only a limited amount of spots available for each role E.g “Reserve for a male vampire and a female mermaid.”
Even if you are already ready to sign up, you should still always post on the signup thread to notify the owner that you are planning/already signed up.
You doing this helps the owner know you are actually going to participate and are not a troll.
Both roleplays and story games start with the signups. These are threads that have “Sign ups” in the title so you know it is a sign up. They have a description of the roleplay or story game, the prompt or plot. They also have a sign up form, which could be a Google Form or a form that you copy and paste and write in the answers, then repost on the thread. You talk about their bio, or biography, personality, etc. You also include a face claim, a link or image of what you want your character to look like. Here is an example:
And here would be that same form, filled out in case anyone didn’t understand what I meant when I said writing in the answers and reposting it on the thread. It would be the same on a Google Form because you will still fill out the answers.
Character Name: Violet Goldberry
Bio: Violet had a happy, typical, and sometimes even boring life with her twin sister, Theresa. But when they were ten, their world was completely changed when their parents got divorced. Since then they have been going from one house to the other. Eventually, the sisters got through it but it has made an impact on them.
Personality: Violet is sweet and positive. She is very optimistic and she likes to try and make other people feel better. You can usually find her with a smile on her face. She usually supports other people to the best of her ability and will always be there to help someone.
Face claim: http://cdn.pcwallart.com/images/shay...allpaper-4.jpg
Lastly, before you signup for an RP/SG, make sure the sign ups are open. Sometimes people will close the signups after they start the RP. Some will remain open after they start and you can still jump in. But you have to make sure they are open before signing up.
FACECLAIMS AND STARTING OFF
Once you’ve signed up for an RP or an SG, your character will be put into something called the Faceclaims. A faceclaim is what you want your character to look like. Different RPs/SGs have different rules on whether the FC needs to be real or not. A Faceclaim is usually a link to a picture. However, the Faceclaimsare a Google Slides, a Google Form etc created by the owner of an RP/ SG. It shows all the characters in the RP/SG and their traits. You can see who else is in the RP or SG.
Starting off RPs: The official thread will be posted by the owner of the RP. It should be obvious on whether a thread is a Signup thread or an Official Thread because it should have it in the title. Now, the RPing begins. The owner of the RP tells you where and when you are starting. For example, if it was a high school RP, the owner could say, “All the characters are arriving at school on their first day of school.” Then everyone starts posting from there on the Official Thread. (Read RP section for more!)
Starting off SGs: The official thread will be posted by the owner of the SG. All you have to do is read it and have your character made a choice. (Read SG section for more!)
Now, you can get to the actual RPing! When you are RPing, you are posting about your character, their actions, their thoughts, and what they see/hear/touch etc, and what they feel. Many RPers have different styles of posting. Present tense, past tense, first person, and third person are all commonly used and all acceptable. Here are some examples of ways people use:
She walked into the school, excited and nervous all at the same time. It would be okay though, since she had her sister with her no matter what.
I walk into the school, excited and nervous all at the same time. It would be okay though, since I had my sister with me no matter what.
Violet walked into the school, excited and nervous all at the same time. It would be okay though, since she had her sister with her no matter what.
Obviously there are several more ways to do this, but these are the three most common here on the forums. As the RP goes on, people will start to approach your character and you will have conversations. If you want people to know your character is approachable, just do this: ORP: Approachable! You can control multiple characters at once too.
Another important thing to remember when roleplaying with other characters
is having something for their characters to respond to. It is so boring when you are roleplaying with someone and they aren’t trying to carry on the conversation and are just saying Yes or No.
Some tips to make it easier for the people you are interacting with to respond is by asking some sort of question (preferably a question that isn’t completely a yes or no question), or do some surprising, bold, big, different or interesting action that their character(s) can react to. Also making your posts detailed makes them much more entertaining to read and respond to.
Story Games are very different than roleplays, in fact, they live in opposite worlds. The signup process is the same as RPs, and SGs have Faceclaims as well. But other than that, they are completely different. In an SG, the creator of the SG will write chapters. It will be the prompt that plays out with your characters. At the end of the chapters, you have your character make a choice.
Here is a quick example:
Violet looked around and brushed some of her hair behind her ear. She wondered who to talk to. She saw two girls. One had long, black hair and was reading. The other had bouncy platinum blonde hair and was using her phone.
Theresa stood behind Violet. She wanted to get out of her comfort zone and not be stuck to her sister’s side. On one hand, she could walk away from her sister, but on the other hand, she could stay with her.
Julie pulled her long brown hair into a ponytail. She checked her phone for a minute and then walked out of the hallway to the library. After reading for a bit, she decided to do something else. She could go anywhere in the school.
@ Violet’sCreator Who should Violet talk to?
@ Theresa’sCreator Should Theresa leave or stay with her sister?
@ Julie’sCreator What should Julie do now?
At this point, you will PM your choices to the owner of the SG or Fill out a form depending on what the owner tells you to, so they can start writing the next chapter based on your choices. It is based on the situation they get put in by the creator of the SG. The SG will continue with the creator writing chapters until it comes to an end.
Here is a quote that can help you remember the difference: “An SG is more like Episode, while RP is just free-styling on the go.”
CREATING YOUR OWN RP/SG
Creating an RP/SG is fun and helps our community, but it isn’t always best to just start a Roleplay out of nowhere.
First off, from a lot of older RPers that have been in this community since practically the beginning, a lot of us suggest joining one or more RPs/SGs before creating one to get a feel of how we like to run things in the Subforum.
Also, we wanna keep this Subforum clean and organized and that means not having unused RP threads. So, we ask, that before you start your own RP/SG that you stop by the New Ideas Thread which is pinned at the top of this Subforum. Post your idea(s) there and see how many people would be interested in joining. You should only start an RP after getting a decent amount of interests. If you don’t, than you can always check back later when people are less busy. Or maybe, you can come up with a new idea that’ll pique more people’s interest.
When posting an idea and/or a Roleplay always be specific with your plot and explain to people how the RP would work and everything they’d need to know before signing up. Even if your RP is based off a really popular story/book/movie/etc you should still explain the plot, because maybe not everyone has heard of it.
After you get the Signups thread up and running you have to put together FCs, often answer people’s questions and so forth. It is always good to give people a decent amount of time to create characters. Creating good and interesting characters can’t be done in only 3 days, especially with our busy lives.
Then comes the Official Thread. It is your job to keep the RP afloat. You need to watch the Roleplay and make sure people don’t take it over and ruin your vision.
Here are a few tips to keeping your RP from dying:
If the action is dying, you can always do a time skip to another more important event (though before timeskipping it is highly reccommended you warn everyone so they can finish up their conversations. You also don’t want to have too many timeskips and have a decent amount of time between each timeskip)
Plan. It is always good to have a somewhat specific plan in where you want the RP to go. If you leave everything up to the people RPing, things can go wrong and it’ll eventually die. - But don’t overplan either. If you set up everything in one specific way and give the RPers no freedom then it is probably better to do an SG.
Post your RP at a good time, when you know people aren’t as busy. We all have lives outside of roleplaying and people can’t Roleplay all the time. If you post your thread at a time when people are less busy they will continue posting, thus, the thread will die slower
Of course, you can’t always prevent a thread from dying. Sometimes, it is just the time to say goodbye because people have lost interest or it just isn’t working out. That is okay! Don’t get discouraged or upset if your RP dies before you want it to. It has happened to pretty much everyone.
A GUIDE TO MARY SUES (Written mostly by TheBluGeek and a little bit from Snowykcnomre)
What is a Mary Sue?
A Mary Sue (or Gary Stu for males) is a perfect character. They have no flaws, no weakness, and are absolutely perfection! These characters are generally frowned upon as they don’t bring a lot to the RP/SG except a perfect being.
How can I spot a Mary Sue?
Usually a Mary Sue’s sign-up form may look something like this:
Character’s Name: Julia Strone
Species: 1/2 Angel, 1/4 Demon, 1/4 Human
Bio: Julia was born to an angel and a half-human, half-demon being. She was raised with love and care and everything went her way. She was very popular in school and got great grades. Everyone wanted to be her friend and she loved everything no matter how small or how big they were. She spread love everywhere and soon began to become famous. She met the love of her life later on and they are engaged now.
Personality: Julia is extremely popular and loving. She cares for everything and everyone and they all love her in return. She enjoys donating to the poor and those in need and often wants to get others to pitch in and help as well.
Powers: Julia has the power of flight, telekinesis, darkness, light, speed, teleportation, shape-shifting and more that will be later discovered and activated.
Weaknesses/Flaws: Julia has none.
Do you see why this is a Mary Sue? This character is way too perfect!!!
How can I avoid making a Mary Sue?
It’s actually quite easy to avoid making one of these pesky perfect beings! Here are some tips to use:
While the bio does not have to have anything bad happen it is good to perhaps use a small incident such as an injury when your character was younger as a way to implement a flaw.
Your personality can be perfect as well but I suggest adding a flaw in there such as they care too much about everyone or that they have anger issues.
Make sure they have some type of weakness so they are not too powerful.
Try to make sure their powers are not too OP such as insta-kill and such!
Suggested by Cam Boulder Having a TOO tragic past can also be a Mary Sue trait! If you want to have disaster try not to make it so that its super dark and horrifying… if you do make sure to do research in cases such as mental illnesses and such!
A Mary Sue often does have flaws. However, these flaws are crafted in such an annoying way that it makes you want to pull your hair out reading them. For example, say my character is this sweet, loving, and humble (but beautiful) girl who is extremely selfless to the point of fault. She puts everyone’s desires over hers, which is great, but when that is the only flaw she has… Oh god, help me.
Mary Sues are often is OP as hell (they got these amazing kickass powers) but the writer always seems to “conveniently” forget Mary Sue is kickass. One of the most annoying things about her is when Mary Sue has awesome karate skills but somehow is always desperately helpless.
You want an easy way to make sure your character is not a Mary Sue? Don’t self-insert. What I find most common (and I’m guilty of doing this when I first began writing), Mary Sues (or Gary Sues) are made by beginners who want to be the main character with all these things happening to them and then… well… they kind of create an idealized version of themselves. If you really want to self-insert without creating a Mary Sue, you will have to be brutally honest with yourself. Asking others to be honest about their opinion of you may also help. All and all, basically destroy every last bit of your ego and self-worth.
If you want to save your self-worth without creating a Mary Sue, try to come up with an original character not based on yourself. If you’re having a problem coming up with ideas, observe from real life! Many artists will tell you to observe from real life when you start out drawing. The same applies to writing. It is okay to base your characters off of real life relatives, friends, acquaintances, etc. Now, that doesn’t mean you should create exact replicas (although I suppose if it fits your story, no one has to know it’s an insert for someone in real life). We still want to use our creativity, right? But creativity works best with structure.
One else bit: for the sake of everyone’s sanity, try to stay away from cliches. Keep in mind cliches and tropes are not the same thing. Tropes are plots, characters, and elements of a story that are recognizable. Cliches are predictable and overly used tropes that readers groan in boredom at. Now, cliches do tend to be subjective, so my best advice for you is to create the story you want to create. Take inspiration from the real life and the world of books, TV shows, and movies. When using tropes, figure out ways to diverge the trope. Create plot twists. Make it unique. Just don’t put all your mental effort into creating a cliche-less story.
ISSUES OF PORTRAYING ABUSE AND OTHER SENSITIVE AND SERIOUS TOPICS IN RPs
@Cam will be posting this information below soon, so please read it!
We really hope this helped anyone who needed help with figuring out what everything meant and how to do what we do here on the forums.
Also, if you think we forgot anything important, please tell me so I can add it and if you have any question, please ask!
HAVE FUN HERE!