RP Thread: OOC discussion

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Postby Gnaeus Dionysius Draco on Fri May 30, 2003 11:17 am

... and as we all know, resistance is futile! :)

But wait... that was another place, another episode. Hmm.

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Postby Curio Agelastus on Sun Jun 15, 2003 11:43 pm

Salvete Draco et Mari,

I just thought I'd check to make sure I wasn't being incredibly stupid. Draco, you *are* expecting either myself or Mari to visit you at your place, yes?

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Postby Gnaeus Dionysius Draco on Mon Jun 16, 2003 7:48 am

Salve Curio,

Actually it can be anyone. It could be you. It could be Marius. Or anyone else who wants to join in at this juncture. If no one is going to write anything I have an alternative storyline myself :). But sure, you're free to show up!

Vale bene,
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Postby Curio Agelastus on Mon Jun 16, 2003 8:44 pm

Salve,

In that case, I'll wait and see the result of Mari's assimilation of/by the temple information before coming to visit you.

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Mari's Course

Postby Aldus Marius on Tue Jun 17, 2003 11:56 pm

Avete conlusores...

The result of RL-Mari's assimilation attempt is that the Borg choked on him (or he on them--accounts differ), and the attempt then failed for lack of the necessary restraint harnesses and safety rails to contain the load they placed on Mari's back. Mari will post once he settles the resulting OSHA violations. (OSHA is the Ami gov't.'s on-the-job safety organization.)

When he does post, he will place RP-Mari at the Taverna with all his animals, waiting for his friends. (How he hates early check-out times...!) So if Draco and Curio have something going on the night before departure, don't wait up for the Wanderer--feel free to play out your subplot without him.

*sorry*.... >({(:-|

Hopefully done setting high expectations is
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In the Wings...

Postby Aldus Marius on Wed Sep 10, 2003 10:57 pm

Is it my turn yet...?

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Postby Curio Agelastus on Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:44 pm

Salve mi Mari,

I think so - Draco has returned to the dubious company of the Pupinii, and I have returned home, somewhat the worse for wear, to sleep off the effects of the drink. Therefore I think it is your turn, and Curio shall return to the Taverna in the morning!

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Status check

Postby Aldus Marius on Sat Jan 31, 2004 12:41 am

Avete, conlusores (Greetings, fellow-gamers)...

Will we be continuing the current RP story, or should we be brainstorming another plotline that might better hold our interest? (I can go either way; but if we stay the course, it's Draco's turn to respond to Marius' commission if he's going to, or to wire me privately if he's not so I can make Mari's next move.)

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Postby Curio Agelastus on Sun Feb 01, 2004 11:32 pm

Salve mi Mari,

I think this plotline has great potential, but it definitely isn't my go. :-) Mi Draco, I think you're needed to continue this one!

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Postby Gnaeus Dionysius Draco on Mon Feb 02, 2004 4:59 pm

My problem is that ever since September, I've barely had the time to breathe, and participating in this RP takes inspiration and time. I will hopefully write my turn, but I can't promise when, unfortunately... I hope you won't stone me for this offence.

Vale!
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No-Stone Zone

Postby Aldus Marius on Tue Feb 03, 2004 3:24 am

Avete iterum, amici...

No stones here, unless you count the tiny ones in the pebble-painting I made last summer, which the dogs promptly scattered to the Four Winds; and so I shall only chuck them at the dogs. (A pebble-painting is like a sand-painting, only with larger rock bits; mine was of the layered-colors-in-a-container variety, and the individual pebbles were not more than a quarter-inch long. But I digress.)

Very well; I reckon we can put this story on hold (more like suspended animation) until we all feel like posting again, and we can come up with something a little more appealing. The next one may have to be slightly gamemastered, just to keep it going in a definite direction; I've done this for years, and I promise not to smother anyone's fun. If this is agreeable to you (and to any other prospective players), I think it'll help.

Your thoughts?

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Okay...Gamemastering Defined!

Postby Aldus Marius on Tue Mar 16, 2004 4:27 am

Avete iterum, conlusores...

My, my; mention the word 'Gamemaster' and Everyone Runs Away... [wink]

...or at least doesn't respond for a longish time. Perhaps I should explain what I meant...

In a regular tabletop RPG, there are the players...and then there is the Gamemaster or GM. The players are each responsible for the actions, reactions and responses of one or more characters. The GM is responsible for Everything Else: the setting, the narration, the overall storyline, and playing any allies or opponents the characters run into (say, Mari's patron Cassius, his nemesis Cincinnatus, or the grill chef at the caupona...just to name a few who can affect my guy). The GM also serves as a referee, an expert on the game rules (remember, this is a tabletop game we're describing) and how to apply them to unusual situations not covered in the books. As a general rule (and to insure fairness), the GM does not normally run an actual player-character himself.

'Net-RPGs vary tremendously in how closely they try to adhere to this model. I have seen (though rarely played in) online games where the players had their dice and rulebooks sitting right there on the computer table, ready to be consulted on a moment's notice. Of course, with online die-rolling especially, a certain element of trust is necessary...either in the player's reported results, or in the impartiality of a neutral who rolls for everyone: usually a GM, but there are even online die-rolling services! (I believe White Wolf and Steve Jackson Games each supply one.)

Most 'Net games, befitting their environment, tend to be much more freeform. I was in one RP, called Magic's Last Stand, where the GM had a master storyline and played all the villains; but within that framework, the player-characters were pretty much free to do whatever they pleased, as long as they showed up at the critical junctures when they were supposed to and, of course, reacted to one another and to the villains. When last seen, my ancient Griffin was winging towards the Island at the Top of the World where a great meeting of magical beings was to take place, having stopped en route to pick up his friend, an equally-ancient Roman Archmage!

Nearly every other e-game I've been in has had no GM to speak of (there may have been someone wearing that title, but they functioned more like a regular List moderator), and no master plot. Now, this is not necessarily a bad way to run a game, nor is it a one-way ticket to anarchy. One or more characters may have an overarching objective of their own, one that can fuel a subplot of such strength that it may even become the story, at least for those involved. One need only peruse the Sherwood tales at the Roman Outpost to see how much elegant literary mischief the right group of players can get into all by their lonesomes. I was kinda hoping our little British junket would turn out the same way. But behind SherwoodRPG and any other successful game of this type has been a lot of behind-the-scenes "subplotting" and coordination between the players. For busy people with limited access who want to be able to simply drop off their contribution and check back for a response the next time, this may not be the way to go.

So I submit to you: Which is the way to go? Can we (that's Curio, Draco, myself, and anyone else who'd like to jump in) put in the writing-time for the flurry of off-stage e-mails it takes to support a completely players-only game? Let's think real life, now. I still think we can pull it off; but given the travel plans and academic calendars of so many of us, we'd have to accept that the game would go very, very slowly!
>({|;-)

The less work the players can put into it, the more they will need a GM. If we do that, do we want it to be minimal [Sherwood], medium [Magic's...], or maximal [White Wolf] driver's-seat activity on this person's part? (See the different examples above.) Will he/she be able to run a character? Will our playing on a Bulletin Board, rather than on a mailing-List or even in a chatroom [Don't Ask; I can't access any], make a difference?

In amicitia et fide,
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Postby Curio Agelastus on Wed Mar 17, 2004 1:17 am

Salve mi Mari,

I'm not certain. I don't think the problem is a lack of direction, merely a lack of time to write our pieces. (Hint hint, mi Draco 8) ) I think we've got a good plot going with the journey to Britannia, and since we're all three of us unlikely to make up ridiculous subplots along the way that introduce an alien invasion or some other world-altering event, I think once the RP itself gets moving again we'll be able to keep it going - I think you'll have to accept that this won't be as fast as some RPs, I'm afraid. :)

Bene vale,
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Silly Suggestion

Postby Aldus Marius on Wed Mar 17, 2004 2:54 am

Indeed, mi Curio, I did mention that if we keep going in the current format, we would simply have to accept that it would be at a pace the leisureliness of which would make the resort town of Baiae look like the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution. >({|;-)

Perhaps we should all post Quarterly?
>({|;-) again

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Dum Spero

Postby Aldus Marius on Thu Mar 18, 2004 1:14 am

** Mari is hoping Sir Draco will gift us with his perspective. **

** Mari, never wanting to shut off healthy discourse, also hopes everyone will continue to discuss the many points and options in the Gamemaster post. **

** He is certain that, even if no changes are adopted, the current and any future games will benefit handsomely from said discourse. **



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A Welcome, and Thank-You!

Postby Aldus Marius on Wed Jun 09, 2004 2:28 am

Avete conlusores!

Marius 'Moderator' wishes to extend a warm, OOC (Out-of-Character) welcome to new player Gaius Equitius Cato. Regardless of what my character thinks, *I* say you're doing a great job capturing the essence of a dissolute Magistrate, sure of his place in the Roman world and the rightness of his cause, however self-serving. I really like the way his appearance has resurrected the game! For this I thank you; my turnaround time may not be the best, but you always have my interest. >({|:-)

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Sequence?

Postby Aldus Marius on Sun Jun 27, 2004 11:25 pm

Said Draco amicus, IC (In-Character):

> Marius, however, was already speaking before Draco had the chance to say something.

I've been wondering about this for a while. Are we taking turns in a defined sequence? While most of the time the RP does seem to go (from my perspective) Mari-Draco-Curio-Cato or some variation thereof--id est, my character posts, then all other active characters speak before mine does again--I've really just been posting for Mari as the spirit moves me, as things occur to me for him to say. Up to now this has not been a problem, and I do try not to step on anyone or cut him off.

But if it is supposed to be a strict round-robin, then I owe Draco (and possibly others) an apology for 'speaking out of turn'. In that particular instance, Curio was still making his mind up; Mari, having formed a very strong opinion, would, I think, have naturally voiced it just then. But perhaps I should yield some realistic-flow-of-conversation in favor of giving other characters a fair chance to react to things. At least I wouldn't be posting any more 'Whose turn is its'...! >({|8-)

So...quid censes, conlusores? Shall we take turns in a set order, or pop in whenever it seems to advance the plot? --I have no preference either way. I just need to know what we're doing.

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Postby Gnaeus Dionysius Draco on Mon Jun 28, 2004 12:04 am

Salve Mari,

I think fixed sequences would kill the creativity a bit and popping in dialogue whenever necessary is good. The three of us and Cato seem to leave room for dialogue at the end of each paragraph, which I consider to be a good thing.

Vale!
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Postby Curio Agelastus on Mon Jun 28, 2004 12:17 am

Salvete,

I agree that a strict order would be a bad idea, let's just post when the need take us - we're all courteous people, so we won't be rude or anything and interrupt when one or two people clearly have a private plot thread happening, so it should be fine. Incidentally, Mari, there was no need to feel like you were interrupting when Curio was thinking - the reason I made Curio unsure of what to do next was because I didn't want to decide the plot thread for the four of us by myself, so I deliberately said "What do we do now, guys?"

Bene valete,
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Quick Question

Postby Aldus Marius on Wed Jun 30, 2004 1:36 am

Me again...

Quick question for Cato, or anyone else who knows:

Did Cato actually give the other characters the money, or did he just show it off and then take the bag with him?

If the money changed hands, then our guys are going to have to figure out what to do with it (Marius has an idea).

It would have made more sense, however, if Cato had taken the money with him; would he have paid so much in advance to some scruffy-looking strangers for services not yet rendered?

Jes' wonderin'...
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