Roleplaying 102: The Revenge of Society

Wyrmrest Accord
RP 102: Read RP 101 First

Welcome to RP 102! Forgive the long time between the previous RP 101 and this thread, I was a bit busy and couldn't find time to sit down long enough to collect thoughts and put them into an intelligent thread, and nobody wants to hear me ramble. Nobody.

This RP 102 thread is a bit shorter than my original RP 101 thread. You'll have to forgive me on this. I've been really busy and this is the best I could throw together. If there's enough interest, I may even write a RP 103 thread. If you want to see some tips and such for something I didn't touch in either thread, or have questions/comments feel free to contact me in game as Alinaris or Zakarov.

So lets get down to business!

Once again, if you haven't read RP 101, I highly recommend you read it first, as this thread deals with advanced RP concepts and may or may not ever refer to the original 101 thread. Welcome to the revenge of society. Like your favorite horror movie villains, me repeating this word over and over again will never die, and come back to haunt you while you're swimming at your favorite summer camp. Silly councilors...

As always this thread is for a specific type of person, and not for others. If you're interested in learning some advanced RP concepts, brushing up on that pop culture character you made, or in general someone interested in learning and expanding your already expansive knowledge of (draenei female tail length) roleplay, then continue on!

However if you're any of the following, please do not read any further as I'm afraid this thread will probably just frustrate you and/or cause you to develop unsightly welts.

  • Ghostcrawler

  • If you may or may not be a werepenguin.

  • Any and all Lady Gaga roleplayers.

  • If you own more than fifteen beanie babies.

  • People who cannot handle sarcasm and satire.

  • People who will read the table of contents and flame on something they read without reading the actual subject matter at hand. I love you guys so much.

  • Gnomes

  • (Because we all know gnomes are mythical creatures that do not exist.)

    Here's your table of contents:

      1. An intro to RP 102 and a recap on 101.
      2. But I want to rp as spider man! Pop culture done right.
      3. Crazy RP abilities: How to commit self suicide.
      4. Dragon Roleplay: If you're gonna do it, do it right. (Don't do it)
      5. Erotic Roleplay (and how it's ruining your favorite server right now!)
      6. Expanding your character even further (social events and you)

    This is a more focused thread touching on several “taboo” subjects and how to deal with them appropriately, and what generally ruins such things for people. This thread will be kept clean, so don't see #5 up there and get all excited (looking at you, draenei) because this isn't a “how to guide” but rather where it may or may not fit in, and the arguments for both sides. If you're concerned, read the next post on what each section will contain.
    1. An intro to RP 102 and a recap on 101

    If you read my RP 101 thread (Go do it now if you didn't.) you'll remember me saying that you should start small and build your way to bigger and better things. This continues in this thread. There's a whole world out there that we as roleplayers have to build. Sure, Blizzard was nice enough to give us a world already, but that world is static and boring, at least in a roleplay sense, unless you like conversing with NPC's who say the same thing over and over again. So we must build our own world, but how to do it right? Well hopefully this guide can give you some ideas on how to do that.

    RP 102 has several goals, and mind you all of this is one man's logic and one man cannot speak for the whole world, so take everything here as ideas. I'm not trying to tell you -this is how it must be done- (it is, I have big men with sticks to back me up) but rather giving you information that maybe will spark something to help you improve as a roleplayer!

    Anywho, here's the goals of each section:

  • Pop Culture Done Right: This section focuses on characters with pop culture in them. There are several characters like this in WoW already, one of the most notable is Harrison Jones (after all, Uldum is basically a friggin Indiana Jones movie). Here I give tips that generally make for successful pop characters, and some warnings on what tends to kill them/ruin them.

  • Crazy RP Abilities: I can walk through walls! When I get mad, I hulk out! Hey everybody, look at me! My diamond pecks can shoot lasers! Some warnings on a trend I've seen since I started roleplaying. This should've been in RP 101 but I'm putting it here.

  • Dragon Roleplay: If you're gonna do it, do it right. But in my opinion, your best bet is to not do it at all. Some suggestions on what typically ruins dragon roleplayers before they even say “roar”, and what you can do to make them a bit better, and what you can expect from the community.

  • Erotic Roleplay: This is less of a “how do to do it right” and more of a “why this is done, why it shouldn't be done, where it fits in logically, and why the community hates it”. People do it, people will always do it, and here's some tidbits to chew on about it. (get your mind out of the gutter)

  • Expanding your characters even further: This is basically a continuation of RP 101 in where you can go from a complete character and how the world is built around you by roleplayers. This also has some information on roleplaying guilds and the ins and outs of them, and what roleplay guild leaders could do to improve on their roleplaying guild.
  • Pop Culture Done Right:

    There's a lot of people that asked for this in the last thread, so I decided to write up what I know about pop culture, and what I've seen ruin a lot of pop characters. Consider this a condensed version of a “how to make this character”.

    Lets start with a character in pop culture...

    Hmm...ok lets go with Batman. Most people know batman. If you don't know batman, pretend you know about batman. And I mean batman, not Bruce Wayne. No comic book know-alls, I don't care about your batman knowledge, I'm going off a general basic knowledge of the character. I'm sure 10,000 of you could do better/correct me on something but here we go.

    When making a pop culture character the bigggest pitfall I've seen is when someone takes that pop icon and simply -makes it-. There's nothing original, noting witty or fun, it's just that character, in WoW, and it falls flat.

    Players love to figure things out. They really do. That swell of pride, that overwhelming joy you get when you notice something in the game that's an easter egg (is that just me?). A quest name, an achievement with a witty title, it's something that gets a bit of a chuckle out of most people but not all of them. Some people roll their eyes at it, and that you just have to deal with.

    Before you make the character, sit down with your pop culture icon, and think about them. What makes them, them? What really defines them as a character, or a person? Write down key things about them, their personality, their mannerisms, everything, even appearance. What you need to do is circle several -key- parts of that character. This is what you will be using. Not all of it, you don't want to be that character, you want to be a reference. Not only will this give you more flexibility in creating roleplay for your character so it isn't just a one trick pony that you lose interest in eventually, but people will appreciate it for it's unique twist on something they know.

    So lets take batman, what makes batman, batman?

    Well he seems kind of grim, even violent at times. He seems to hold justice to a high degree, after all he's a crime fighter. He's got all kinds of gadgets. Goes out at night, has a dark theme going on. He can at times seem to be a good guy, and a bad guy almost. He's very intelligent, and always has a plan before going into something. He's skilled at martial combat, and doesn't use guns or the like. He's got a car, the batmobile, and a hideout. He lost his parents when he was young.

    So if I had to take all of that, and make it into a character, I'd personally focus on his key points:

  • Upholds justice.

  • Dark hero (not always 100% good)

  • Gadgets

  • Intelligent

  • Loss of parents

  • Take a human, paladin, make him an orphan, and throw those traits on him. Go through and flush him out, give him some unique personality traits as well. Make him an engineer for the gadgets. Suddenly you have a batman character that fits in rather well with the WoW universe.
    One thing that can go either way is the names. Do you name your character after the pop culture icon? That's entirely up to you. I would say: No, don't do it. It makes it too obvious. But if you're not one for the subtle, who's going to stop you? (the aforementioned men with big sticks)
    Crazy RP Abilities:

    One of the biggest downfalls of a normally decent character I've seen is the fact that they give them some kind of odd special ability. Something that just doesn't fit in, doesn't make sense, and seems really only to be there to make them a mary sue/special snowflake. In most cases it immediately and utterly -murders- that character (worse than big sticks ever could). A lot of serious roleplayers will simply look on in pity as the player parades this character around with his super special ability, and simply look the other way.

    “It's part of my character! I spent time and effort making this character!” they cry out, whether it's true or not.

    What kinds of abilities am I talking about? There's too many to list, but some of the one's I've seen are:

  • A human, in a rp fight, turning into a six armed troll.

    • Not only do six armed trolls not exist in lore, but why would he turn into it?

  • A player mentioning that his character “gets red eyes when he gets really mad, and gets super strong and almost invulnerable to damage”.

    • I can understand that adrenaline can make people stronger/tougher, but that's something everyone has. “hulking out” really just makes people never want to have any kind of drama/conflict with you because it makes you look like the kind of person who would never accept a defeat.

  • A player, after being killed in roleplay, somehow resurrecting, and “rebuilding 90% of his body with engineering robotics”.

    • Why this couldn't be left with resurrection I don't know. I guess they wanted to be the bionic man or something.

    Some of these roleplays I was involved in. Some I wasn't. But as I see them, my mind recoils in horror at what they portray to others. These abilities do nothing for your character in a positive light, they only subtract from something that could be great. You don't have to go beyond the norm to have an interesting character. Which brings us to our next topic of delight...

    Dragon Roleplay: If you're gonna do it. Do it right. (don't do it)

    I personally think the trend for people wanting to roleplay dragons comes from Blizzard's common habit of putting the player in a position where the NPC outshines them. Thus a bunch of people suddenly want to play dragons because they're “powerful, long lived, extremely magical” creatures. Typically I see dragons used to bully other players, even oocly. “My dragon would just eat you.” is a really common phrase I see thrown around and it saddens me. If you want to see why people have such a bad view on dragon roleplay, think of the phrase “My dragon would just eat you” a few times and what the implications are.

    Thinking on it?

    It implies the dragon is so powerful, that they would “simply eat you” as if it were some trivial task that you could never fight against. It leaves the other player in a position of helplessness, and people do not want to roleplay with someone who so blatantly power games in that way.

    How can you do a dragon right you might be asking? Here's my tips:

  • 1. Look up your lore. Look up your lore. Look it up again. Do it again. Five times now. I cannot stress this enough. So many people that play dragons get the lore wrong and do crazy stuff with it. See the last section of my guide. The social aspects (Society is back!) people put on these dragons are often so strange and bizarre and contradictory of other dragon roleplayers that it's hard to take any one of them seriously.

  • 2. Realize immediately that if you are doing this for power, people will not like you, and a large number of people will not roleplay with you. You are not a dragon aspect. You are not all powerful. Make your character like everyone else, and accept defeat sometimes. You'll be better for it and probably earn some respect along the way. Normal dragons die all the time in WoW, constantly. Even Malygos, an aspect, has died. Yes dragons are strong, but all the races in wow can be strong. (Except murlocs. They're weak but they swarm. It is impossible to pull a single murloc, ever. You'll get 3.)

  • I can't give you much more advice beyond that. What you can expect from the community is harsh judgement because so many before you have done wrong, so wrong in fact that most dragon roleplay is looked down upon. My biggest tip for rping a dragon?

    Never, ever, ever, tell anyone you're a dragon. That's what I mean when I say “don't roleplay a dragon”. Dragons that hide amongst mortals usually don't let them know. They go years without letting anyone know, decades even. They only tell people when it's absolutely necessary. If you want to roleplay a dragon, roleplay a human with some strange habits. Or an elf, or whatever. Just don't roleplay a dragon, because dragons tend to stay hidden. That's my biggest tip. Take it or leave it.
    Erotic Roleplay:

    If you aren't comfortable with such subject matter, please don't read on here. I am not saying this is a good thing, or a bad thing, I am merely putting the facts out there. If I wasn't asked to do a section on this, I wouldn't even touch this subject because of the hotplate it sits on. This section will use a lot of vague language on purpose.

    Oh boy, this...this is gonna be a touchy subject. Here we go...

    People tend to bash erotic roleplay left right up and down. It's such a huge taboo, yet people still do it. Some people hate it, some love it (too much) and some are logical about it.

    First we'll go why people hate “ERP”:

  • They see it as smut. People just doing it for out of character reasons and satisfaction. (you know what I mean)

  • They see people doing it all day/everyday in goldshire.

  • A lot of the people that do it, only do that, and don't roleplay otherwise.

  • Out of character social taboos.

  • They don't see a place for it in roleplay at all.

  • These are all valid reasons. A lot of the people that erp do it as wish fulfillment and have no real character development. There's no reason for them to be having romance with all of these people, and a lot of the times it's simply one night stands. They never go anywhere with it. This is bad in a lot of ways. Really in the end, nothing is going to stop these people from doing this, but I want you to understand first why people give it such a bad name.

    So you might be asking yourself, why does this fit in roleplay at all?

    If you remember roleplay 101, the definition of roleplay is that you're assuming the actions of another person in a make believe situation. Romance is, well, the course of normal love. People do these sorts of things in real life. Some more than others.

    Some roleplayers feel the need to roleplay out every aspect of their character's life, and feel that if they skip out on anything, the experience is ruined. Some want to put that aspect in, but aren't comfortable with the subject matter or following through with it. All of this is understandable.

    A normal relationship, with love, and courting and all of that, can head to romantic territory. Some will roleplay this out for their own reasons, some will blackscreen, fastforward, and what not. But it has it's place, and not everyone is horrible for doing it, though some will argue otherwise.

    In the end, it's those who do it every day, hour by hour, with person by person for no reason other than some fetish, that give the whole “erotic roleplay” aspect it's taboo bad name, and when I see people going on about it ruining the server, I believe it is those people they refer to.
    Expanding on your character even further: A continuation of rp 101:

    So you've got this shiny new character, fresh off the mental printing press, and you're ready to go out in the world. But what kind of a world will they be going out into?

    If you remember from RP 101 I mentioned “Starting small, and going bigger”. I also said society a lot.

    There are things even bigger than your character that you can shape, and mold into roleplay. This will touch on that.

    The people you roleplay with are a community, and in essence make up a whole new society all in their own. The society you used in lore to make your character is far away now, and these are the people you will now be shaping your character with, for better or for worse. In general, the masses out in the public (Stormwind for example) are the society your character will be dealing with. These people have their own ideals, and as a whole, all of us make a collectively larger rp grouping. This is hard to shape, as people tend to go their own ways, but if you want to shape people and go beyond your character, there's one system in place for you:


    Roleplaying guilds group like minded roleplayers together, usually under a common storyline. They run events, roleplay, along with all your typical guild functions (bank, dungeons, raids sometimes, pvp, but not all of them do all of this). In all honesty, this can be done the easiest by throwing out my tips to you for a good roleplay guild and what the pitfalls are.

  • 1. When making a roleplaying guild, try to follow the logic (not the steps) of character creation. Does your guild, your group, fit in with lore? Does it make sense? Would they fit into the society they'll be a part of?

  • 2. Does this guild idea promote a lot of great events? Or is it just an idea? Ideas tend to fall flat in guilds. Be prepared to spend a lot of time making this happen, and be prepared to accept a lot of failures. Your first events might only have two people show up. Don't get discouraged. The longer you stick it out, the more people will be drawn to you.

  • 3. Be ready with lore, and logic to defend your guild idea. Make sure you can confer your idea to someone else easily and quickly. Most people won't want to join a guild who's core idea is so convoluted and confusing they need to read a book's worth of your logic to figure it out. Keep it simple.

  • In all honesty, more could probably go here, and more probably should, but my mind is sputtering for ideas. I'm going to cut it short here, forgive me. Hopefully the above information helps you all, and helps our server continue to grow. Some of the negative people mentioned will of course never change, but hopefully some of you will read the above, and grow as roleplayers. This can be my only hope.
    Thread is now open! I will be editing the above posts for BBCode and the like, as I learned last time it's easier to go in and do it afterwards than have to go through and edit all of your pre-typed code because it's wrong.
    RP 103: Society Part 3, in 3D
    RP 103: Society Part 3, in 3D: The Revengening
    08/07/2011 10:00 AMPosted by Alinaris
    lets get down to business

    to defeat

    08/07/2011 09:09 PMPosted by Verric
    lets get down to business

    to defeat


    I was so tempted to do this, but I didn't know if I had room left in the character limit so I left it out.
    ephie eat all the eggs
    08/08/2011 06:39 AMPosted by Thenock
    ephie eat all the eggs
    I'm glad I wasn't the only one who noticed that.

    Me too.
    how the heck did this get stickyed so fast, and that roleplaying guild thread has been up for months!
    What roleplaying guild thread?
    You know, I make these points on my main, Halent, all the time. Maybe its because I'm in-game, or openly telling another RPer that their character is hardly socially viable to their face, but I normally get a lot of backlash. But I see the mistakes you point out frequently, and when it shows up, I'm not really afraid to tell them that they shouldn't exactly be the strongest thing in the world, or the smartest engineer in existance, and everyone will hate them for claiming such. I mean, its not like I'm saying their character is a total flop.

    Well, when I put it that way, I can see why they attack back. Oh well, their loss.

    Join the Conversation

    Return to Forum