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Old 06-01-2002, 05:10 PM   #1
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I would like a few opinions on the following concept. See I feel pretty much people will do mostly what you allow them too. So if in your administration you are lax, they will become lax, and roleplay goes out of the door. On the other hand if you are concrete, they become concrete, and again, roleplay may go out of the door for the pursuit of "perfection".

Now my question is based on this. When creating a storyline is it more productive to make it harsh, so people have to overcome obstacles and thusly roleplay. Or is it better to have a psuedo-paradise and then rip it away from them, or have it threatened in some way to see if they react in a roleplay fashion.

From what I've seen good - bad usually results in whining and OOC questions. But bad - god, is usually done through roleplay and teamwork. What are your opinions on the matter?

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Old 06-01-2002, 11:16 PM   #2
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In my experience, the best scenario is one in which you provide the groundwork for the players, but let them define the reality. In other words, provide an in-depth historical background from which they can glean information, but allow for them to apply that knowledge to the current situation(s) as they develop.

If you make it too rigid, then there's no freedom for the players, and they will resent it, and the RP will suffer. Too freeform, and they will not know what to do, and resent it, and RP will suffer. Involve the players, if you can, even betatesters. If they ask for more depth on something, provide it.
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Old 06-04-2002, 07:02 AM   #3
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I agree with Robbert.

And now, on something of a tangent…
I think that the matter is one of trust between player and staffer. Personally, if someone who I didn't know very well ran a TP for me in which my character (through no fault of his own) was screwed over in such a way as to cause him to lose things that I'd invested both IC and OOC effort in, and presented the character with no or few options to avoid what was happening… Well… then I would, to put it mildly, be mightily dischuffed.

It has yet to happen to me, although I've seen it happen to others. Any RP that follows after that is usually the attempt to make the best out of a bad job on their part.

If, however, the person running the Tiny Plot was a friend and we'd OOCly went over things first, then it would be a different matter entirely. I'd see it as an opportunity for character development, rather than just some staffer deciding to play god and yank people around.
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Old 06-04-2002, 09:26 AM   #4
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In any environment there should be long term, short term, and immediate plot-lines.

Immediate lines are those things that can start and end in a matter of hours, or maybe a couple of days. The impact on the overall environment is usually pretty minimal, so there is little impact here as far as going from good to bad or bad to good.

Short-term lines might last a week or a few months, but they have a definite start and end to them. From what I've seen, people prefer to have these go from bad to good, but every now and then it is nice to have one that goes from good to bad and sets up a future short-term plot. Players get used to the whole "here's a problem, figure out how to solve it" RP that mixing it up with "here's a problem with no immediate solution, what are you going to do?" is a nice change of pace.

Long-term lines are the ones that are either tied to the IC history of the environment, or are ongoing plots that have a major impact on the entire population. There might not be a definable beginning or end. I think these should almost always be bad to good. Continually watching things get worse for a long period of time can make it depressing to log on. From what I've seen people like to feel like their RP is making a difference and having an impact on the world around them. While some people enjoy playing a villain and bringing everyone around them down, I think most people like to find solutions to problems and overcome adversity.

In other words: Overall the plots should be moving from bad to good, but throwing in some good to bad makes for a richer, more interesting environment IMO.
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