Roleplaying is the purpose of the community. But all to often to people fail to have a proper roleplay reason for entering combat. Now as a roleplay, combat will often be necessary – but one of the skills of a good roleplayer is knowing the reactions of your character to a particular situation. While it may be true that your character always reacts violently to any situation, those kinds of characters tend to make a lot of enemies and won't survive long in the harsh environment.
A much smarter character will pick their fights. They will know when the odds are stacked against them and they will know when to press their advantage. But what does all this mean to you, the player behind the character. It means one thing: you don't always have to fight. If there's one lesson that you should take away from reading all this guide, is that fighting isn't the be all and end all of roleplay. It is an essential part, sure, but it's not top priority for the community. So don't always react with an automatic fight. It won't earn you any friends in character or out of character. Hell your character could be a Pit Fighting Champion. But that doesn't mean that you always have to react violently – even the Emperor prefers words over fighting.
Next time you get into an argument or want to play a hero. Just stop and think – what would my character do? Would he or she really risk his life in this situation? Because that's what you are doing... even if you are “unkillable” or refuse to give permission, you lay your character's life on the line every time you start a fight. That cuddly Wookiee dancer could turn out to be a raging psycho madclaw, and spill your precious life blood out onto the dusty streets of Anchorhead or the likes. That gang of starving spicers might turn out to be armed. So just think before you go charging in.
Think about other solutions to the problem and the different ways a situation could play out. Talk your way out of it, heck – even running away can be more realistic. Your character may be the undefeated Teras Kasi champion of the galaxy, but if you are faced with an armed gang you should treat the situation as if it could be your last. If you don't, then you are not roleplaying very well. We in the community have a word for that – godmoding.
In the end, it comes down to the kind of roleplay you want. If you resort to hitting /duel everytime you face a situation, you will find yourself spurned by players who want more immersive roleplay. As with any action, there should always be a roleplay reason. You should never fight simply because you can, you are bored, someone else is fighting or you can't find anything else to do. While combat is part of roleplay, it isn't roleplay in itself. We are roleplayers. So roleplay.
===Top Tips:=== Basis for Combat
- Think about the characters reasons for fighting – why are you fighting?
- Think about your characters feelings – should they be afraid or nervous?
- Think about your opponent – is the situation enjoyable for them?
- Don't get into fights or aguments simply because you are bored
- Don't fight simply because you can
- Think about other solutions to the situation that may provide more roleplay
- Combat is a useful tool in roleplay, but should not be the only thing used
- Think about the consequences of your (and your character's) actions
The three most important things you should think about before entering combat: reasons, feelings and consequences. By taking a moment to think about the situation, what it really means and how it could end from your character's point of view you can start to really develop your character. Roleplay within the community is about really taking your role that one step further – trying to experience the emotions of your character and getting an idea of who the character really is. Feeling even a degree of the same nerves when you enter combat, the same triumph if you win and the same fear should you lose. Without aspiring to really make your character alive, you might as well turn off your computer and give up playing. And treating your character like they are mortal is an easy way to begin to immerse yourself in true roleplaying.
===2.Losing:=== Everyone's A Winner
Life is always a balance. For every good thing there is always a bad, and for every winner there has to be a loser.There needs to be a fair share of winners and losers. Now every new character arrives with the aim of being one of life's winners. But it is the player behind the character who decides how that character develops. Whether the character gets good breaks or nothing but bad luck. Combat is the same – for every character that stares down at the bloody body of his vanquished foe, there has to be a character that stares up through swollen eyes at a triumphant enemy. But unlike life, it is purely the decisions of the players that determine the outcome of combat and roleplay.
Playing the loser gives you a new perspective on roleplay. A character that is down on his luck is more satisfying to play than a character that always wins. It offers more depth to roleplay and the chance to develop a character to a new level that many others will not reach. You may talk big and desire to win all the time in character, but until your character has suffered the humiliation of being publically beaten you won't develop the character beyond the most shallow of levels. Defeat can breed bitter rivalries between enemies, close bonds between friends who fight together and well-rounded character.
Deciding to lose is as easy as that. It's a decision. It's deciding not to heal yourself in combat It's deciding to not use your special moves as much. It's a decision and if it's done right, I assure you, it's a decision that you won't regret.
It's not about losing every fight. It's not even about losing about half. It's just allowing yourself to lose occassionally to provide better roleplay. Getting properly mugged. Getting attacked by a rival gang. Whatever. It shows your character is real and vulnerable. It shows your character is alive. Roleplaying a good fighter is not about using every trick in the book to guarantee you win every time. Even the best fighters win – it makes for a better rematch in the long run.
So when should you make the decision to lose? Well, that's entirely up to you. But one suggestion is to talk to your opponent, out of character. Ask them what their view on the fight is, which side should win. Then roleplay it out. You may be a Dark Jedi Lord and he may only be a Smuggler, but when you have a gun to your back it might be time to think about laying down your 50 fights winning streak. You may only have a Shiv, but if you stab a Dark Jedi with a knife he's still going to bleed like everyone else. Discuss the situation with your opponent and try to agree who should come out on top.
===Top Tips - Losing:=== Everyone's A Winner
- Don't always win fights
- Don't always lose fights
- Try to mix winning and losing – making your character rounded and balanced
- Communicate with your opponent – discuss who should win and lose
- Think about the realism of the situation
- Distance yourself from the character's skills – think about the situation not the likely outcome
- Make the fight exciting – if you plan to lose, make it look convincing
- Have a roleplay reason for winning or losing – don't win just because you lost the last fight and vice versa
- Remember your character's feelings and motivation
- Combat isn't all about being incapacitated/Killed – you can run away, flee on a bike or even hide
In the end it comes down to the player's personal choice. Do I want the character to be invulnerable – a mighty god of combat who potentially gets no other roleplay because of it, or do I want to make my character more “human” (or whatever species the character happens to be). Whether the player wants to be selfish and think of their own feelings all the time, or if they want to be a better roleplayer and increase immersion for the entire community. I've seen a single character knock down a whole group of attackers and proceed to pummel them into the sand. Did that make me think “wow – what a good fighter”? No, it made me think “wow – that guy isn't a smart enough roleplayer to know when to lose”.
Being the best fighter in the server doesn't mean jack. It just means people avoid you in character and out of character. So don't fall into the trap of pride – make your character deep and know when the odds are stacked against him. Nine times out of ten, it's more rewarding to lose a fight in terms of roleplay and experience than winning. Know when to lose a fight.
How do I start Roleplaying?Edit
Roleplay can be quite hard to get into for some people. I would advise finding a roleplayer and talking to them one on one. This tends to be a lot more beneficial then just reading off a site where you can’t ask questions and such.
Creating a Character:Edit
Creating a character is so much more important then lots of people realize. It might be helpful to sort everything out on paper first, I know it helps me lots. As confusing as it may seem it’s also possible to over plan your character usually in the region of personalities, I’d advise not to plan your character’s personality down to the letter until you’ve had a few interactions with them so you can settle into the role and not force yourself into something that isn’t flowing naturally.
When creating a character you should try to choose their name, bio, appearance, any alignments in the War or smaller conflicts, skills, stats, history, loose personality, any traits they may have, strengths, weaknesses and any other things such as any beliefs your character may have. Be creative with your name. (I.E: Don't use a famous Star Wars name like Han Solo or Luke Skywalker). Also try to avoid these kind of names: Anakin Starwalker. That is too close to the actual name, nd anyways, Anakin isn't that popular of a name. You’re aiming for something interesting and original; the number of people I’ve seen whose parents have been killed by the Empire/Rebellion and are now out for revenge against the Empire/Rebels is getting beyond a joke even in the short time I’ve been in the game.
Common Roleplay Slip Ups and Tips:Edit
Line of sight. Your character’s line of sight is an important part of roleplay and is commonly abused by new roleplayers. Just because YOU can see round corners and behind you doesn’t mean your PLAYER can. If a bounty hunter is sneaking up on your character, untill you get used to it, it is incredibly tempting to turn around and challenge the bounty hunter. But your character probably wouldn’t know the guy was there, so roleplay that. The easiest thing to do in situations like this is think: ‘If this was the real would I notice whatever’s going on?’ Become your character and focus on realism.
Power Emoting/The Sin's of RoleplayEdit
In essence, they all boil down to "respect every player's character and do nothing that impedes their enjoyment of the game." It is a bit more complex than that.
1. Posing control over someone else's character. Just don't do it. It's messy. This is a deceptively broad sin ranging from the seemingly harmless to those infernal godmoders we all want to strangle.
"Bob shoots Joe and he dies." Yes, we all know this is bad.
"Bob enters the room and you can't help but notice how attractive he is." I see a lot of this of varying flavors. People who instill fear, longing, hope, etc. into people they meet. People pose something and include the other charactes' reactions.
It seems harmless but in doing so you are taking control of another person's character. There may be layers upon layers to that character's personality and history that you have no clue about that decides how they react to any situation and, by assumign they react a certain way, you deny the player the pleasure of bringing their character to life.
2. Being a 'Mary Sue.' This is just the term I learned this playstyle by and men are just as capable of it as women. The name means nothing. This is the trademark of bad fanfics everywhere. You are the perfect being. Perfect beauty, perfect charm, perfect grace, perfect everything. You have the solution to every problem. You jump into the middle of a situation and 'make it all better.'
3. Always being the center of attention. This one's a killer. You leap into the middle of any and every situation and insist on being the star. Being a Mary Sue helps this out a lot as you can fix every problem so you 'want to help.' The problem is that RP is give and take and everyone wants their turn in the spotlight.
4. You derail RP. Look at sins #1, 2, and 3. All of those contribute to #4 here. When you show up, the RP dies. Maybe you demolish the mood and setting by showing up where it isn't appropiate and trying to claim the spotlight. Maybe you refuse to let people RP their characters by including their reactions in your poses. Maybe you derailed a storyline by assuming control of the NPCs or using your Mythical Powers of Awesome to 'make everything right.' Eventually, you get a rep and people flee.
So that is what I think a good RPer is not. Therefore, a good RPer is someone who is...
So that is what I think a good RPer is not. Therefore, a good RPer is someone who is...
===Respectful.=== You give players the space they deserve to play their characters. You never pose something that makes any assumptions about their character or forces something on them. The easiest way to make sure you are respectful is to always make your poses attempts. You do not "shoot Joe." You "shoot at Joe, aiming for his head" to give the player information on what you are trying to do. You do not "enter the room and enamor all the men." You "enter the room and toss your hair." Feel free to add adjectives to your hair.
===Considerate.=== You always try to think about what other people want from the RP. This one is harder than being respectful but worth it. Before leaping into a situation, you observe to make sure you are not interrupting something delicate. You know that sometimes you are the star but that time is not now and let other people enjoy the spotlight. You know that, even if you have the power to fix something, it may not be wanted and check first.
Metagaming (for those who don't know) is roleplaying in a way that wouldn't really happen in the realistic restrictions of your game's enviroment/universe. One example is being all-knowing, all powerful, etc.
One such example, a force user's manipulation of objects in their enviroment. I've seen people just off-handedly *throws entire ship at <insert name here> using the force.* A feat like that takes alot of concentration. Even Yoda, who is considered one of the more powerful Jedi, had to really concentrate to stop the pillar that was about to fall on Anakin and Obi-Wan in AOTC. He also had to use a good amount of focus to send the senator platform back at Sidious.
There are other things that characters in the Star Wars universe wouldn't wisely do. Like trying to pick a fight with a Wookiee. As Han Solo pointed out in ANH, a wookiee can tear a person's arm out of their socket if angered enough.
So just try to keep in mind your enviroment and what would be wise/unwise in terms relative to our RPing enviroment(s)