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Roleplaying Guide ~ The "How To"s and "Don't Do"s

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Roleplaying Guide ~ The "How To"s and "Don't Do"s

Post by Roxas on Sat Feb 27, 2010 4:21 am

~~Shinobi Legacies: Guide to Role-playing~~

Welcome to Role-playing 101. In this guide, I am going to show you the multiple and versatile ways of making the greatest, high-quality, and lengthiest post that you can create!

I. Role-play in General
II. Length
III. Details
IV. Paying Attention
V. Actions
VI. Cleanliness
VII. Punctuation
VIII. Godliness
IX. Conclusion

Role-playing, in a decent definition, is creating a story with multiple people being the authors. Now, understand that you are taking the term ‘story’ into full effect. There are Rights and Wrongs to role-playing. Let me give you a simple example of a right, and a wrong when it comes to action:
Johnny slowly took an orange off of a tree. He examined the beauties of the luscious fruit. He always enjoyed fruits, even as a young child. Happily, he tore off the skin and took a nice large bite from the colorful orb.

*Johnny takes orange from tree* The orange looked delicious! *he takes a huge chunk from the orange*

As you can see from these two examples, the one at the top is, obviously, in correct form. We do not role-play using the ‘star-actions’. This is completely wrong and makes things rather difficult to read.

Now I will give you an example of a Right and Wrong when it comes to speaking, thinking, or any type of verbal communication:

“Where have you been?” Johnny frantically yelled towards Jane. He was anxious to receive an answer. “You’ve been gone for almost three hours!”

Johnny: WHERE WERE YOU?!!! Johnny stares at Jane YOU WERE LIKE….GONE!! ….FOR 3 HOURS!!!

Role-playing, using the ‘Colon-quoting’ is also wrong. It shows inexperience and is also sometimes hard to read. This is because there are times you don’t understand which is spoken, and/or which is performed.

Another thing to use correctly in your typing are the quotes. [“”] Would be the quotes to use when your character is speaking. When they are thinking, it is mainly right to italicize what they are thinking, but it would also help if you added the [‘’] quotes.

Johnny stared at Jane happily. “Wow, Jane! You look great in that new shirt you got!” he announced, smiling. ‘She’s also quite beautiful, too!

Now that I went over these basics; let’s get into a more detailed guide…

II. Length
Some people believe that ‘very large posts = very great role-players’. Well, actually, this is kind of wrong. You could have the world’s largest post, but it doesn’t mean it’s amazing. Many have to understand that size isn’t everything. Though, a two-sentence post isn’t very good. A decent-sized post can be about 5-8 sentences long.

Ex: Being 18, and having his license, Johnny was aloud to drive anywhere he pleased. He stepped out of his house excitedly, spinning the keys on his finger with the key ring. He whistled a quick-paced tune to himself as he opened his car door. Sliding into the seat, he placed the key into the ignition, turning his car on with a loud sound.

Now see? It may be slightly small, but at least it explains what is happening. Sometimes, the phrase ‘One-paragraph posts’ are taken wrong, and some people end up posting things such as:

Ex: Johnny’s 18 and has his license, so he can drive places. He walks out of his house and walks to his car. He turns the car on and it makes a loud noise.

See, this post explains the same thing that happened in the post previously, but it isn’t as detailed. Someone who doesn’t know you could look at this post and believe you’re a horrible role-player. This brings us into the next section: Details.

III. Details
Many posts seem to be amazingly typed, because people take their time and add details. Details are one of the most crucially important parts of role-playing. Without details, how would we know what something looks like? How someone actually feels? Facial expressions, shifts of the feet, body shape. Everything needs details to make an actual post.

An example of a very detailed post would be:
Johnny, being exceptionally great at the game of baseball, swung his bat quickly at the speedy ball that headed towards him. His bat hit the ball with a loud CRRAACK! He tossed his bat down at the dirt-covered ground quickly and vigorously ran towards the first base. The first-baseman’s face showed a look of worriment, thinking that he wouldn’t be able to get Johnny out in time. Johnny then dropped roughly into the dirt, sliding towards the base. When the large cloud of dust abated, the umpire called “Safe!” loudly. Johnny had made it to the square base just in time, a look of accomplishment filled his eyes.

This post is very detailed. Detailed posts show how extended your vocabulary can be, and how much of an experienced role-player you are.

Sometimes, however, details just are not enough. You may have a very detailed post, but have you added anything to your post relating to the one before it? This is another point of role-playing a lot of people seem to be forgetting. You must, must, must! read other posts to keep the story on one track…

IV. Paying Attention
A lot of people have trouble with their posts when it comes to following-up on actions placed in previous posts by other members. You must read the posts done beforehand to keep the story on track. Never, and I repeat, Never ignore a post. Even if the post seems small and unimportant, it must always be recognized. Remember; nothing is too trivial for role-play.

Paying attention also benefits to the story because others would not be ignored and left in the dust. This is especially important if something, such as the character is injured, happens in the previous post. Nothing of that importance is ever to be forgotten, or ignored completely.

Try reading posts multiple times. It helps some out to get the post boiled into your mind, that way you won’t make any mistakes. Also, it’s very important that you do not misread. Misreading a post could be tragic in the end; either leading to an off-topic conversation, or just leading the story to a whole different ending.

Now that I had plastered this into your head, let’s move on to the next subject: Actions.

V. Actions
Actions in a role-play are very crucial. Every post needs to have some sort of action in it, or else it’s just a random sentence. Add some sort of action, such as picking up a glass, turning towards the person, or even burping! Anything would benefit to the post, just as long as it isn’t too far off track. The main actions you wish to add are how your character reacts to something. Does their facial expression change? Do they lift their arm up and hit someone? Show any type of character-based action. If you can, add some detail to it as well! Just make sure your actions are written correctly in your posts.

Which brings us to the next subject: Cleanliness.

VI. Cleanliness
It is extremely important that your post is very clean and tidy for others to read. No one wants to come up to a post, read it, and have epileptic seizures trying to decipher every single word. Even try to take it to the point of copying and pasting your post into Microsoft Word (Or some other typing pad program you have on your system) and use a Spell Check tool. Make sure you spelled it “Form” and not “From”. Reread your posts. Do they make sense? An example of a nice clean post would be any of the rights I had posted as examples throughout this guide. A wrong would be this:

Ex: Jonhny touched the wall feling that it was cment.. iT was very cold and damp form the due in thee seller.

It was difficult to read, was it not? It helps everyone if you read over your posts and fix all of your mistakes.

Note: *Role-playing in all caps does not make you a loud person. Just annoying.

A very common mistake to everyone is what type of punctuation to use. This rolls into our next subject.

VII. Punctuation
When creating your post, did you use the correct form of punctuation? Did you use a period (.) instead of a question mark (?)? Many of us have the most trouble in this area. The main problem is where to use commas (,). There are some people who don’t use them at all, when there are others who are comma trigger-happy.

The best phrase to think about when using commas would be “Place a comma where you would normally breathe in the sentence”. Now, this does not apply to asthmatics, who would have to breathe after every three words. Read over your post. Is there a spot that sounds like it needs a comma? Yes? Place one there. After doing this, read over again. Does it seem that there’s too many? Yes? Take some out, but still leave some in.

You also need to remember to place periods in your posts, or exclamation points, or question marks. Whichever ends your sentence correctly, you need to use. It gets very hard to read when all you have is one large run-on sentence.

Ex: “Hey how are you” Johnny said to Jane he turned towards her and hugged her “I missed you” he smiled happily and walked down the road with her Jane seemed older then the last time he had seen her and it made him happy

It makes you want to shoot yourself, does it not? If we fix this ‘sentence’, it could look something like this:

Ex: “Hey how are you?” Johnny said to Jane. He turned towards her and hugged her, “I missed you,” he smiled happily and walked down the road with her. Jane seemed older then the last time he had seen her, and it made him happy.

Ah, that is much better, is it not? See, sentence enders and spacers help us out greatly in the end.

VIII. Godliness
Many people tend to do what we refer to as ‘God-Mod’*. This is very annoying to everyone.

*God-Mod: (v) – 1. To control other people’s characters or actions through their own post. 2. To defend yourself from every single oncoming attack that comes towards your character. 3. To injure, kill, or inflict pain in general without the other person’s consent.

After someone commits this ‘crime’, a lot of people get very aggravated and start to complain. God-modding is one of the worst things you could ever do. It is not fair to any of the role-players, and it causes tension between everyone.

IX. Conclusion
Wow, how much time have I blown off sending you these tips? I didn’t blow off any at all because this is all very important! Posting correctly is a very big problem on most role-playing sites these days.

Now everything seems to be summed up. Read over this a few times* (Once if you’re that great), and start to finally understand the concepts of Role-playing!

~Also See:

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