Character Guidelines (*Required Reading*)

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Character Guidelines (*Required Reading*)

Post by Sokai on Wed Apr 15, 2009 8:55 pm

New Character Guidelines 02-07-10

1. We've noticed a distressing trend of players finding themselves with multiple characters but not playing most of them. We've also noticed the distressing trend of players only playing certain characters in combat and never in planning, social, or other types of RP. We would like to encourage people to try and play all of they characters they have, as it does take time, as ops, to read character sheets, discuss character changes and intro the characters - when they aren't played, we've spent time we could be doing a lot of other things on nothing. Channel diversity also suffers, especially with social RP. As far as characters who are only played in combat situations, this is a personal choice of each player, but we will generally be less enthusiastic about giving power ups or upgrades to combat-only characters. DJ is, as always, a story driven channel, and story is told through many other places than just combat. If you have a character, please try to play them.

2. As we've talked about before, we encourage people to start their characters at a low to moderate power level in DJ, so that they may improve and upgrade during the course of RP. We implement this via loot, power suggestions, and straight up requests. If you have an idea for your character to upgrade, be it by learning a new skill, getting a new piece of gear, or mastering some ability better, please feel free to talk to the GMs. We obviously prefer if your character has been played working on their power up, or if you have a story in mind of how they will power up, or you present us with a write up/description of the new gear. Once we come up with a good plan for your character to power up, please work it into your RP in a subdued and interesting way; don't present it as your character getting some super-massive DBZ-style OVER 9000 new power. This gives the wrong idea to everybody, including the GMs who just worked with you to get a balanced upgrade.

3. DJ is a sci-fi channel. We really like the science part of this. We have a lot of very well educated players who are both very enthusiastic about implementing vaguely plausible science into RP and very helpful and happy to discuss topics and answer questions. We ask if you play a character who has some kind of technical specialty and you want them to actively PRACTICE THEM in channel, you be prepared to attempt some plausible sounding technobabble. We're not requesting you give us a thesis on scientific properties, but we are asking for some actual density to your roleplay if you're playing a character actively building, investigating, researching or teaching. This is especially true for characters who work in Science (and often, Engineering). Oftentimes, a trip to wikipeida is all you need to understand basic 'how this could work.' We're not asking for a thesis, but 'a scientist did it' is just as unacceptable as 'a wizard did it.'
We know a lot of people are very nervous about 'sounding dumb' or 'getting called out' when it comes to technobabble, so we would also like to encourage helpfully phrased, constructive comments and advice for people who are trying their hand at technobabbling and are still getting the hang of it. Science or magic technobabble is for fun and good RP.

4. We have always encouraged people to try to not give their characters too diverse of a skill-set, BUT in a channel that's been going for some time and has a big character base, there is always going to be some overlap in skill-sets. Combat skills, technical skills, medical skills - there is only so much a character can do that some one else isn't going to know how to do. Just because another character can do some of the same things your character can does not make either of you obsolete. There are many facets on the BoG for skill-sets, but even more so, we really encourage characters with similar skill-sets to work together. This can be great for getting folks to RP with people they may not have a chance to often, and develop new characters relationships.

5. DJ's setting has substantially expanded over the course of nearly two years, as has the types of characters that fit into the setting. We highly encourage characters from diverse backgrounds, but there are certain backgrounds that are really hard to fit into DJ for a number of reasons and the hardest of these are massive crossover backgrounds, especially from other RP channels. DJ is already a massive crossover of its own, so adding even more of that to the setting makes things not only very difficult to GM, but very hard to keep cohesive in story and RP. We'd encourage players to take characters from single settings or very, very small crossovers from this point on.

6. We have a wide variety of really amazing characters in DJ. We love original characters for numerous reasons - the ease of working them and their backgrounds into the setting, the way they influence the setting, and the obvious effort our players put into making and playing some really neat characters. We'd really like to encourage people to keep with original characters (from original settings or even established properties) over established characters. We're not refusing established characters by any means (unless, you know, they're the kind that need refusing!), but originals are something we, as GMs, far prefer.


Last edited by Sokai on Sun Feb 07, 2010 8:04 pm; edited 4 times in total
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Re: Character Guidelines (*Required Reading*)

Post by Sokai on Sun Feb 07, 2010 7:53 pm

Character Creation Guidelines and Moratorium 04-15-09

We now have over 70 active characters in DJ and that's not counting characters who are Gatekeeper-specific. After a year of the channel being operational, Eric and I have come up with some general guidelines to address some of the trends we've seen in many character applications that make it very difficult for us to approve. Some of these topics are things we've tried that haven't worked out, some of these topics are things we do have a precedence for but would not like to see any MORE of, and some of these topics are things that we can't justify or feel uncomfortable including in the channel, for reasons including our personal GMing styles and lots (and lots and lots and LOTS) of player feedback. These topics may be subject to change in the future!

The following bans/restrictions may be subject to exceptions made by ops - however, do NOT pester or expect it, as this can lead to outright bans. One 'no' is all it should take. No debating.

  • As we've already discussed, children (anyone under the age of 18) are a no-go for PCs or NPCs. We don't need to cover this any further!

  • Please, no more characters from Star Wars. We currently have more characters from Star Wars than any other dimension and we'd rather not seem them become overwhelmingly so. Also, no more dragons.

  • A lot of characters tend to be too broad in their abilities/powers: career soldiers, science genius types and magic users with a spell for everything tend to fall into this category. Your character should NOT have an answer for every scenario they come up against; this makes GMing a pain in the butt and greatly lessens the fun of RPing in a lot of situations. If you know how to get out, where's the fun coming from RPing in a perilous situation? There's nothing wrong with having an intelligent character or having a character use a smaller skillset in an intelligent manner - a smart character doesn't come equipped with the answer for every situation, they think up a new one. We highly dislike approving magic users with widely versatile spell-lists and characters with 'high experience' or 'extensive training' in a huge variety of fields. The more widely varied a single character's skills/powers are, the less other characters have to do and the more characters tend to overlap in ways that aren't enjoyable.

  • Opposite of this, a lot of characters tend to be far too focused on one field. We highly dislike approving characters that are the unrivaled expert in any field - this makes it unfair and non-fun to other players with characters who work in the same field. We do not intend this channel to be a 'high power' channel, and the less your character knows coming in, the more he, she or it will learn/power up through RP. We consider learning and gaining new gear, abilities and skills part of the fun of DJ.

  • Please, if you're playing a magic using character, remember that magic does not equal foolproof. Spells fizzle, can be resisted and straight up MISS sometimes. Never assume your spell hits another character, an NPC or a boss. We are very picky about magic users as character applications - we expect to see spell lists and a very specific explanation of each spell and magic effect, including the upper limits of how powerful the spell is. Learning new spells in the course of gameplay is more than welcomed, but we expect to see RP accompanying it and need to give permission before the spell is actually learned properly.

  • Unrepentant characters with a history of murder, genocide and chaotic/evil tendencies do NOT work well in #DJRPG at all; we've discovered this after both attempting to play these types of characters and seeing many characters like this pass through the channel. Please remember that the channel is set upon what is essentially a police ship and a great deal of the characters are interdimensional cops or soldiers. Repentant characters are usually a lot easier to fit into the setting, however this type of roleplay is very delicate and should not be used as the base and heart of the character's RP.

  • Being mortal, human or a carbon-based life-form IS NOT A WEAKNESS. Taking damage and having the ability to die is NOT A WEAKNESS. If you can't think of a better weakness, leave it BLANK.

  • Drop-and-go introductions are slowly being phased out. It's preferable to work a character's introduction into the current dimension or much better yet, just wait until we're on Gatekeeper.

  • Character who can soak up super amounts of damage without stopping (Hellsing or Devil May Cry style) or characters who take this type of damage and regenerate quickly from life-threatening wounds are a really big pain in the ass to GM for, to be completely honest. We will never, ever put your character in an un-winnable situation where they are doomed to die. We will never kill off a character without player consent. Damage soaking/regenner characters, are, from a gameplay perspective, fairly useless. If you desire a long-lived character, we far prefer the term 'unaging' to 'immortal.' Often after large battles characters will return to the med bay which is used like an Inn from a console RPG to be 'full healed,' so this ability/power is even less needed.

  • If this has not been made abundantly clear by channel required reading and conversation in channel, we'll clarify it further: please do not use dimensional travel in your character's setting or concept. Dimensional travel in #DJRPG is strictly controlled both meta and IC for various reasons including ease of storytelling and current plot cohesion. We will probably open up more options for other organizations/characters/beings to have access to d-travel tech in the future, but that WILL be a long way off. It is acceptable to use dimensional travel in your character's backstory as an intro hook, this is in fact a very popular hook and one we'll often approve, after a bit of conversation.

Please direct any of your questions to posts in this thread or in PM and/or channel to Eric and Hannah!
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