Vast Horizon Help Files
Having noticed roleplay of varying degrees here, we decided to write this help file that contains roleplay advice. Note that the following are just pointers and we understand that you are free to roleplay and emote how you wish. Also of importance, read the roleplay policy as it gives a more broad definition of roleplay.
Roleplaying is to play a part other than yourself. It is what you did in that school play, or what you do in many table top game settings. If you are slated to play a doctor in your theatrical debut, you are going to act like that doctor rather than yourself. This is what we need to do here, we are pilots with many layers. Some may be adventurous, others not.
Vast Horizon is an RPI, or roleplay intensive, game. This means that players must remain in character at all times, unless you are speaking on an OOC channel, the rules of which can be found in the communicating help file. Specifically, keep roleplay in character and off channels such as Newbie or Conversations with Staff. Staff has seen this happen numerous times and we hope to steer away from that. If you have a part in a school play you do not stop in the middle to have a conversation with your best friend about hair. You finish the play and then get into the conversation.
OOC = out of character
IC = in character
Another key point is to do your utmost to help other players and the staff tell a story. Think of it as group story time. A group of people are sitting around a fire, person A begins a story, person B adds to it, person C throws a curve ball which totally changes the direction but has added to it.
If you are familiar with table top gaming, your game master helps to ensure that your group works together to make a story during each game session. If you are creative, you build that story as your character progresses. This type of RPI game works along the same method. Characters are not required to get along with, nor be best pals with everyone in the game. In fact, when we see a couple of people seemingly roleplaying with their best friend or partner all the time, it can be disconcerting. While it is not against policy, it can quickly turn into the appearance of isolation and, often times, does not help tell the group story. If Tracy comes in as a new character and can't find a way to get into roleplay because Esther only talks to Maya and Donald, she is likely going to get discouraged.
Character conflict is a part of roleplay and not frowned upon, however, try to play your story out correctly so that you do not end up with an unplayable character. One thing we've noticed is many people will decide they don't like a particular conflict and quit. This both hinders the story that is being fleshed out and leaves others involved at a loss for how to move forward. You've got to remember, this is a game and IC conflict is not a personal attack on you OOCly. If you feel it is, send us a support for discussion rather than rage quitting.
Having done a little research, we've found these points helpful to becoming a good role player.
*write emotes, even if you think they're bad. It's better to put in some effort than to have your character be a talking statue.
*Be inclusive with your interactions rather than in a tight isolated group. While your character should have some best friends, only roleplaying with those set people will hamper both your character development and the game's development.
*Pay attention to those roleplaying with you. If you are tossing in emotes or speaking without paying attention to those around you, you may find people less willing to interact with your character during complex or busy scenes. This is fine because everybody likes drama, but you won't be able to add your slice of the pie into the story if you don't know what's going on.
*Make sure that you are giving as much as you are taking. Adding to the story is important for good progression.
*push boundaries. Roleplay sometimes needs a small nudge, so if you think you have the right plot point or character trait to move a story along, use it.
*Don't create an Overpowered (OP) character. We are going for realism as much as possible here. A twenty-year-old woman simply would not be able to be a science expert, an engineering expert, and whatever else you can think of as a situation in the game happens. Having your character jump in at every roleplay situation with great knowledge about what they need to solve the problem is not realistic. This is heavily frowned upon by the staff and good roleplayers.
A good example of not being overpowered. A pilot decides to bang on the sensors because they've seen others do it. Said pilot knows full well OOC that this may not work but does it anyway and is fine when their ship's sensors are messed up.
A good example of trying to be overpowered. Said pilot bangs on engineering equipment and because they've seen others repair things, they get dismayed and offended because it failed. Then the same pilot is able to invent a medicine that fixes a broken leg, expecting both of their endeavors to work. Warning, they likely won't work.
In short, pick a couple things you can be good at, understanding that you cannot be that person who knows all about everything. We also are not telling you to not play this type of character, just realize you are not always going to succeed.
Contrary to popular belief, you don't need to write a novel emote to be a good role player. You do need to write something of substance though. While a large emote is necessary in some cases, in others it can hamper a scene. Case in point, you are at an important meeting with ten people. They are having a discussion about the state of the universe and making plans. You come in and write a five paragraph emote about how you saunter over, take a seat, smile at your lover, and fix up your hair. While the emote is nice, it can easily break concentration of those around you who are trying to move the plot forward. If you are at a party and trying to call some attention to yourself, by all means write that big emote. If you need a big emote that would involve your actions while speaking about the topic at hand, it would fit. As you can see, knowing when to be loquacious and when not to do so is dependent on the situation you find yourself, those around you, and your personal style of emoting. Having said this, emote how you wish, these are merely pointers to help with roleplay advice As stated above.
An RPI doesn't just mean that the roleplay is intensive. It means that while you are playing the game you should do your best to separate yourself from the character you are playing. If you don't like coffee, maybe your character does. While you may enjoy reading a thick book during a snowy day, your character might prefer finding some targets for the biggest snowballs they can make. Let's say Tracy really has a dislike of lizards, she's not scared of them, just thinks they are disgusting. This doesn't mean she has to play a character that is disgusted by lizards. It is even recommended that this not be the case. If it is something you just can't deal with by all means add it to your character's existence, but try to change it some so you feel like you are playing a character and not yourself. Playing yourself has a habit of ending badly if the game becomes a bit too real.
If you are stuck on a character decision, rather than just doing what you, the player thinks is best, give yourself a few choices maybe some good and some bad. Then roll dice to decide what to do. Or, reach out to staff and ask us for help, we'll b happy to roll those dice for you.
Just because you are doing an RP scene with an NPC, (non player character), you don't always have to agree with them. Step out of the box, agreeing with the NPC all the time may end up with bad consequences for story progression, or it may not. To explain a little further here, we are not always going to create plots, or scenes for you to do. You need to get involved and help to write the story. Step outside that box and do some enjoyable roleplay. Don't worry about having to be liked by all the NPC's, that makes life boring.
One final note. We often notice people worrying OOCly what will happen if there character cannot be around for a big event. The best advice we can give on this issue is listed below.
We are fully aware that one simply cannot log into a game all the time, real life does come first in all instances.
However, many may choose to react positively, or negatively to your absence. The best advice we can give is to realize this and allow the roleplay to happen. These would be IC reactions, not OOC. Good role players may not give you a free pass for falling asleep during that big Kiohn invasion, while others might. Neither method is wrong.
It all boils down to separation of character. Never worry that staff will be angry if you don't log in. Worry IC that Austin may be angry if you cause his ship to explode.
This tends to be the largest hurtle that people get stuck on. Just because a person in power orders you to be at the bank at 6, yes he may get upset IC and you'll need to do some fast talking to escape his ire. But, nobody is upset OOCly.
Just roleplay, run with it gang!
This help file was last modified: 04/21/23 at 9:16 p.m.
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