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Old 07-27-2005, 02:13 PM   #1
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This is one of those roles that takes some guts to play over an extended lifetime on a roleplaying MU*. Basically, you're an abrasive, insensitive, harsh and, sometimes, heartless soul who derives pleasure from verbally abusing others. Ever taken on this role? Have you managed to pull it off without also being perceived as a jerk out of character? If you were able to get people to distinguish between the IC persona and the OOC one, how did you manage it?
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Old 07-27-2005, 06:04 PM   #2
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Angry

I played for a couple of months on a mud where almost everyone was trying to play 'the jerk'. It was VERY irritating. I mean, I have nothing against a couple of those hanging around and RPing, but having EVERYONE try to do it was just silly.
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Old 07-27-2005, 06:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Danlor @ July 27 2005,18:04)
I played for a couple of months on a mud where almost everyone was trying to play 'the jerk'. It was VERY irritating. I mean, I have nothing against a couple of those hanging around and RPing, but having EVERYONE try to do it was just silly.
So...did you try playing one? Let's try to keep to the topic at hand. We're not looking for a critique of MUDs where people play jerks. We're looking for discussion by players who have played jerks and how it worked out for them.
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Old 07-27-2005, 06:16 PM   #4
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D'oh, I'm sorry. I got distracted in the middle of writing that and forgot to put on the last half *cough*.

...

So to try to fit in a bit more with the people RPing around me, I played a 'jerk'. It... ermmm... didn't work out too well. I can write mean characters in stories, and I can come up with insults/sarcasm easily off of the top of my head, but some of the subtle nuances of really bringing out the underlying nastyness of the character just made me feel terrible for playing someone like that, even if it was pretend.

I always felt really bad after playing him, so I finally gave up on him .

Some of my friends, who had incouraged me to play a mean character to fit the atmosphere, understood that I wasn't at all the way I was showing that character to be.

The people who DIDN'T realize it was me, though, told me OOCly that I was the meanest git that they had ever met, and even their mean characters wouldn't interact with me, which also killed any fun I'd been having .
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Old 07-27-2005, 06:37 PM   #5
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I like to play gross & disgusting orc/troll/ogre warrior/barbarian types.  Now they may not be jerks, per se, but I find other PCs can interpret them as such, when I roleplay their low int/wis stats, or their evil alignments.  This is really their problem, not mine.  It only becomes my problem if it becomes a PK situation, i.e., I'm not going to be hanging around paladins, or elves, etc, but may be inclined to kill them either for racial or religion reasons.  Another reaction I find interesting is when the MUD is supposed to be RP oriented, yet PCs break character in the room.  For example, I had an ogre barbarian who was sitting at the town square, & a few PCs arrived.  One of the PC's, an elf mage, started talking about a R/L movie she had seen. She was using say, not OOC channel, so I started reacting to teach her a lesson.  "MOOOVIES!!, Whut be a mooovie, me not know what you mean?'  She tried to ignore me, but I persisted, " Hey you pointy-eared elvy, WHAT YOU MEAN??!!  Dat mooovie stuff sound like dat hokey pokey stuff you pointy-ears do, & ME NO LIKE IT, SO SHADDDUP OR ME MAKE YOU A WET SPOT ON DA GROUND!!"  She eventually split, muttering about what a jerk I was.  Too bad she wasn't in PK range, or push would have come to shove, & that would be that.  So in that case I was a "jerk", but she had it coming, for not staying IC, & using say for the movie review instead of OOC channel.
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Old 07-27-2005, 06:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Brody @ July 27 2005,14:13)
This is one of those roles that takes some guts to play over an extended lifetime on a roleplaying MU*. Basically, you're an abrasive, insensitive, harsh and, sometimes, heartless soul who derives pleasure from verbally abusing others. Ever taken on this role? Have you managed to pull it off without also being perceived as a jerk out of character? If you were able to get people to distinguish between the IC persona and the OOC one, how did you manage it?
Frankly, I find this "character type" to be grossly overused. It seems to be the refuge of the anti-social, mean spirited griefer. When caught in his or her stretching (or outright violation) of rules (with the intended purpose of harassing or harming others both IC and OOC), the excuse is always that they are playing an "@sshole" character.

This type of character could potentially be interesting if its existence was sparse. It would also be interesting, possibly, if the person really held true to the supposed RP goal. Amazingly, even these "jerks" always make sure they have plenty of friends they are nice to in case they need backup for whatever purpose.
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Old 07-27-2005, 07:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Threshold @ July 27 2005,18:53)
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Frankly, I find this "character type" to be grossly overused.
Perhaps in your experience this is true. But I've been on tight RP-focused MUSHes for the better part of a decade, and I've not seen that many people willing to play this kind of a character in that sort of an environment for an extended time.

Because of the nature of the community, players on MUSHes (in my experience) tend to want to be able to be accepted both as the character they play and as the persona of the player behind the character.

Playing a jerk in character in games like this can come with the inherent crossover effect of other players assuming the person behind the character is a jerk too - and thus they treat them accordingly while they're out of character.

After a while, I've noticed, either the jerk character lightens up so the player doesn't get as much grief behind the scenes - or the character just fades out entirely.

In tight-knit roleplaying games, I really haven't seen this "overused" by any stretch of the imagination. What I've seen overused is the "nice" character - because that way they can be nice in character and out of character, and no one has a reason to be mean to them in either incarnation.
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Old 07-27-2005, 08:01 PM   #8
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Well, who wants to be known as "the jerk" for any extended period of time?

Now, then, if you renamed this archetype/role as "the bitch", I bet there'll be more people willing to admit playing this role!

I've personally never seen anyone play a longterm "jerk" character with any success, but I've seen a few "bitches"!

EDIT: By "the bitch" role, I mean roleplaying someone who encompasses one or more of the following qualities: sarcastic, snide, backstabbing, mean-spirited gossip, rumormongering, razor sharp humor at the expense of others, adept at extremely droll quips, and so on.
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Old 07-27-2005, 08:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Estarra @ July 27 2005,20:01)
Well, who wants to be known as "the jerk" for any extended period of time?

Now, then, if you renamed this archetype/role as "the bitch", I bet there'll be more people willing to admit playing this role!

I've personally never seen anyone play a longterm "jerk" character with any success, but I've seen a few "bitches"!

EDIT: By "the bitch" role, I mean roleplaying someone who encompasses one or more of the following qualities: sarcastic, snide, backstabbing, mean-spirited gossip, rumormongering, razor sharp humor at the expense of others, adept at extremely droll quips, and so on.
Jerk can be a nice way of saying bitch. It definitely applies!
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Old 07-27-2005, 09:17 PM   #10
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I've tried this role a few times. It is the hardest role of all. I can't speak to non-rp mudding, but on rpi's there is a huge social element. It's a demanding role, and the rewards are more elusive than a character who has friends. These pc's even when surrounded by many are for the most part alone. People may have a use for you, you may be involved, but it's a lonely and demanding role. You really have to search for your fun, and most of the satisfaction comes from knowing that you are adding something to the world, even if it's something that there is almost no way for others to acknowledge.
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Old 07-27-2005, 09:22 PM   #11
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Esterra & Threshhold come from MUDs where the guilds are player-run, so if you want to advance in the guild, you have to play "nice" to the PCs that control the MUD.  On Threshhold, the fighter guild members have to "salute" the high level Guild members as soon as you log in, for example, and IRE MUDs have extensive requirements for guild advancement such as writing essays that have to be submitted to the guild leaders. In those types of MUDs being a "jerk" all the time can be a distinct disadvantage if you need the other player's assistance to advance or join, be it a guild, clan, or order.

If you are a player in heavy RP MUDs like Shadows of Isildur,  who require you to play your alignment, for example, you may end up in a orc (if you're of the dark races) run organization (also PC-controlled), where the chain of command is "the biggest, toughest SOB runs it" so jerkdom, per se, may be required to advance.  This is slightly different as this MUD is classless, and has permadeath, so unless you are ready to challenge the head jerk, & live or die with the results, you shut your mouth & take it.

I prefer MUDs that are RP required PK, so you need to roleplay before you PK. Now then I may be thought of as a jerk by those who are my enemies either racially, or due to alignment, but I'm smart enough to be friendly to my allies, because just like in real life, sometimes you need some friends to help you out.  Who is going to retrieve your corpse, or bring you back to life if you are a jerk to everyone.  The PC who is constantly a jerk, is usually found on pure PK MUDs, where you have no friends, just potential kills/trophies.

Even chaotic evil types may need a cleric that is friendly, or a warrior to tank for him. Now complete jerks can survive, but it is tough.

Do I care if the other PCs think I am a OOC jerk, to be honest, I don't care.  Unlike some players, I generally turn off OOC channels, I'm there to play, not discuss who saw the latest "Batman" movie.  I can't stand playing a RP mud, & constantly getting "tells" from across the world asking me if I want to group (This happens a lot on Carrion Fields).  I know you get better exp if you group, but that is ooc stuff. There is no such thing as telepathy (i.e. "tells") unless you're psionic, so unless they are in the same room, I toggle "deaf" so I don't have to deal with it.  If a PC wants me to group, let him come to me face to face, & ask in character.
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Old 07-27-2005, 11:10 PM   #12
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I play the jerk a lot. Mostly because people generally don't like my characters, and I often don't have many in-game friends, so I just decide "You know, it doesn't matter if I act like a jerk, at least people will have SOME opinion of me." so I just act as rudely as possible to other PC's. As for perception of my OOC personality, I rarely talk to people OOC so there's no real way for me to tell what their opinion of me is.
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Old 07-28-2005, 01:36 AM   #13
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I don't personally play this character, but there is one on my mud.

He is quite good at it, and I believe from talking to him OOC that it is not his 'real' personality... but he's got aspects of it. ;>

It seems to work out somewhat well for him: he is a PK-focused and -driven player, and 'the Jerk' lets him get all the PK action he craves. PK is *not* a huge part of our game, so, for him to take up 'the Jerk' is a rather big action... it gives the whole game some PK play that would otherwise be lacking.

I know that from talking to him OOC that he often wishes people *could* perceive him as something other than what he plays, but the general consensus of other players is that, well, he *is* what he plays. Part of this stems from the fact that our mud is not RP, and 'the Jerk' isn't always viewed with the RP intensity that this player wishes it were. He has played non-jerk characters, and has intimated to me that it is because he gets tired of being hated ALL the time, by everyone. He wanted to show folks that he wasn't JUST a Jerk.

On the other hand, his main character is, and probably always will be, the PK-hungry 'Jerk.' So, I'd have to say it works out fairly well for him, but he's got broad enough shoulders to carry it well, and to shrug off the criticisms.

(Apologies for the sideline view of this, but I'm not sure I can convince this guy to come post his own experience with it.)
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Old 09-26-2005, 08:45 AM   #14
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So... The Jerk. I play the Jerk on an RP only MUD. Being the Jerk should not entail simple, mindless PK. That's being the dumbass, not the Jerk.

But... Coming from a MUD where it isn't a PK fest intermingled with "RP" to justify the stupidest such things, I feel I have the liberty to say PK does not equal being the "Jerk" in RP. It equalys being a Jerk OOCly if it's one of your enjoyments... IE: Causing people annoyance... But on to the subject!

For me, playing the Jerk isn't such a hard thing. I don't think i'm so much of a Jerk oocly, it's just that when I RP, I put myself in the chars shoes, rather than putting the char in my shoes.

Is it tough being a Jerk? Sure. More often than not it is quite easy to run out of new and inventive jerkish things to say/do... And generally doing something Jerktastic gets people ****y OOCly, but they can just learn to deal with it ICly instead.

Example: Random Guy A says to me: "Wow! What a nice day it is today, huh?"

Me: "Shut up, you idiot." (Nice, simple opener.)

And there is the basics of being a jerk. Of, course, though, picking and choosing when and where it is best to be a jerk is helpful! You do not walk up to the King or Queen and say something like, "Hey there... Buttmunch! Why don't you do something right for a change?!"

In that situation, it would have been better to be a jerk without doing it so directly! But, of course. It also depends on your character? Is he a smart jerk? A dumb jerk? A jerk to end all Jerks who simply does not care who he offends? It can be fun, and inevitably cause non-lethal strife! (Yes! For all you people who endure mindless PK'ing, there -CAN- be non lethal strife! It's innovative, new, and most definately fun!

But, anyways. Jerks are underused. Everyones either a Goody good, or just some penisface out to mudsex and PK people. And that is discouraging! It makes me think... "R.I.P. GOOD ROLEPLAY. I WILL MISS U LIEK A SON I NEVAR HAD :'("

-KRAGOR TEH KRAGIN8R KRAGTASM III
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Old 09-28-2005, 12:24 AM   #15
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I thought this was about Armageddon for a little while there.
As our own AC said. You can't be completely good to plant a garden. You have to pluck weeds, dig up the soil, clear some field, plant some seed.

Noone cnan be nice to everyone. That just doesn't make sense. Since I have never been able to be nice to everyone, I enjoy playing the jerk. It causes RP most of the time, then people start ignoring me. I pick the people that can benefit my PC ICly, so the people they think can help them the most may not actually be able to help. That is the fun part anyway.

Then being mean IC gets rid of OOC strife from the long day at work and makes me a happier person OOCly.
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Old 09-28-2005, 05:14 AM   #16
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Very tough to pull off. I've done it successfully a few times, mainly because I got so jaded at some points (for not being able to get people to hate me) all I ever wanted to play were the ****tiest, arrogant, self-centered assholes you could imagine.
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Old 10-05-2005, 04:32 PM   #17
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The role of "the jerk" is often over-used, especially because many find it as an excuse for out-of-character behavior. Additionally, many people use "the jerk" as an extension of the reason some people play MUDs: to empower themselves. It's the bully syndrome, making others feel uncomfortable to satisfy one's own insecurities.

Now, that said, some of the best "jerk" characters are often the nicest non-jerks in real life as well. Of course, these people also are good in any role, regardless.

Take care,

Jason
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Old 10-07-2005, 04:05 PM   #18
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Jerks can be very interesting characters, but they /have/ to have other IC and OOC support. I'm not saying there needs to be any special 'jerk' policy or anything like that. What I am saying is that if a player makes a jerk character, it's often better if they have some friends to RP with beforehand.

I think the major reason this is has to do with how being nice as a character is so much easier from a getting RP standpoint that playing a jerk is just a lot of a extra work. If you can't get RP with a character, why bother?

Have I played jerks? Yes. How do I manage?
1) It's a minor/alternate character that I bring on relatively rarely. Jerks and villians have something in common: The MU* 'paladins' will go after the jerks whenever they show up. If the jerk tries to berate someone, or use some kind of racial slur ICly, you're going to see our paladin go multicultural and say it isn't right...

2) I give my jerks little redeeming qualities. Jerks need friends too, even if they are people bullied into it or need someone big for protection. If a jerk can provide protection (Achilles from the later Ender's Game books comes to mind for me here), then the jerk has a redeeming quality that makes people willing to play.

3) I participate in OOC activities if possble. This doesn't mean I'm always on channel, but I make a point to be a nice guy OOCly, and incredibly polite. I won't apologize for the character's actions, but that gives me no right to be a jerk OOCly.
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Old 10-13-2005, 06:17 PM   #19
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I've played a 'jerk' on a few occasions, my latest excursion into that RP being on the Threshold MUD. In that particular instance it was not met kindly, and was shunned and berated to the fullest extent, so a 'jerk' character does not work well with a MUD like that. However, I have stepped into the reins of such a character before, and they can be incredibly fun characters to play. The three points that Yev brought up, especially the 3rd, help out greatly.

Word of advice, if you are going to play that kind of character though, you must be willing to become engrossed in it, and use it to stir RP, or else you will just be veiwed as that dumb guy whose sole reason for logging on is to be an ass. You need to take the character in such a way that you don't just do 'mean' things to everyone and for any reason, but must be able to set certain parameters for when you go off the handle, no matter how wide or thin that line is you still need to have it. <-- At least that has been my experience.
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Old 04-23-2006, 10:44 AM   #20
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*bumped for more consideration*
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