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Thread: Proving Grounds Intro v3.0 *PLEASE READ*

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    romance option Lady of the Arena Lenore's Avatar
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    Proving Grounds Intro v3.0 *PLEASE READ*

    The Proving Grounds v3.0: Embrace Thy Ultimate Destiny, O Mecha Shy Guy, And Become RPG-Compatible! Edition

    Welcome to the Proving Grounds! This is the forum where roleplay ideas will be posted. All roleplay ideas must be approved by both Lords of the Arena before a thread can be created in the Arena proper, and this is the place to do that.

    For more information on what a roleplay, or RP, is, and plenty of other rules and guidelines for how The Arena works, visit the Arena Rules and Guidelines thread.

    Section 1. The Approval Process

    At first glance, the whole approval process may well seem like just a giant waste of time, an obstacle standing in the way of you and whatever your RPing vision is. However, it’s actually crucial in keeping the Arena running smoothly. It’s a way to control quality and ensure that each and every RP which is posted in the main section of the Arena is good and has the potential to last.

    Once you’ve made a thread which suitably outlines your RP concept, there’s not much to do except wait for the Lords to get there. In the meantime, it’s a good idea to answer any questions that prospective players might ask, and offer constructive criticism on any character applications posted in the thread.

    It’s important to remember that the Lords have other responsibilities beside moderation, which means that patience is a virtue. Trust that we’ll get to everything eventually, and if we haven’t yet, it’s acceptable to send a PM or VM to any Lords who haven’t yet stopped by after the thread’s been up for about a week.

    Once you have two approvals, you’re good to go; feel free to make a thread in the Arena for your shiny new RP! Don’t worry if it doesn’t show up just yet, though. As a final measure, threads in the Arena are hidden until a Lord approves them, at which point they become visible. At that point, your players will be able to start posting, and the RP can begin. Hooray!

    Section 2. Creating an RP

    The first thing you’ll need to do if you wish to run an RP is to come up with a concept. Gimmicks can be good, but at the same time, you’ll want whatever makes your RP unique to be interesting in and of itself. Likewise, it also helps to have a solid idea of how you’d like the plot to go, at least for the first couple of events or so; you’ll probably be able to keep things moving at a better pace if you have little plot points you’d like to reach. Having a concrete ending in mind doesn’t mean too much if you don’t know how to get there.

    Another thing to consider is the format of the RP. Like there are different forms of roleplaying, there are different kinds of RPs. The ones seen in the Arena and Proving Grounds are typically entirely writing-based, with people coming together to write and form a story. However, sometimes RPs are seen as RPGs, as in “roleplaying game.” Such things are allowed in the Arena – RPs with the inclusion of things like numerical systems, statistics, and dice – but they have their own set of additional guidelines and rules. You can read more on creating and submitting RPGs in Section 4.

    Finally, there’s the thread for the RP idea itself, and the information it includes.The initial thread should include all the basic information about the RP and form an outline on it, which brings us to the next section.

    Section 3. Components of an RP

    At its very core, an RP is a story, so naturally an RP idea should present a plot for it to follow. Having a clearly-defined plot not only gives a general idea on what the RP actually is, but also gives it a sense of direction. A summary of the opening events and an explanation on the world and where the RPers come in is enough – it doesn’t need to be very long, but it should give enough information on when and where the RP takes place, as well as what’s going on within it.

    Detailing the location(s) in which the RP takes place is also a good idea, especially if it takes place in a setting which is very different to our present, and any unique concepts the RP may have, such as with magic of some sort, should also be explained. Other details related to the setting that should be included are the world’s level of technology and how mundane or supernatural it is, so that people with guns or fire-breathing powers won’t be showing up in RPs where such things simply don’t belong.

    The third basic necessity for an RP idea is to have information on how others can sign up. If there’s any particular rules or other information to know regarding signing up, they should be clearly stated. A signup sheet for people to make character applications with should be supplied. Typically, information that should be included with a character, and therefore a signup sheet, would be name, age, gender, appearance, personality, and background. An example of a filled-out signup sheet is a good idea -– if you’re participating personally, your own character’s information makes for a great example.

    --- Example ---
    Basic Character Signup Sheet

    Lastly, in addition to plot, setting, and signup information, the RP should have a player cap, a limit on the number of signups that can be accepted. It’s difficult to turn down applications, and it’s tempting to accept everybody who expresses interest, but having too many players in an RP means that you run the risk of having too much going on, making for a cluttered story as well as a cluttered thread that is confusing to follow and keep up with. A good standard number would be six players, including the RP’s gamemaster or creator if they’re participating with a character as well. Any more than ten is when things can potentially get out of hand. If there’s enough interest in an RP, this could possibly warrant a second thread, perhaps with a different gamemaster too.

    Section 4. Additional Rules for RPGs

    Submitted RPGs will need the same basic things RPs need, which include descriptions for the story and setting, and instructions on how to sign up. In addition, an explanation of the RPG’s mechanics and rules will be needed. If you’re using an established system, links to a rulebook or online SRD (system reference document) would be very much appreciated by players and Lords alike.

    The rules should also establish a post format for RPGs, if applicable. An example post format might run along the lines of “prose first, rolls at the end”, which would look a little like this:


    The heroic Barkley stared down the Lichnomancer, body tensed and ready for battle. This was the man who had singlehandedly burnt down his entire village, killed his family, and ran off with his girlfriend. The first fingers of dawn dyed the warrior’s face orange as he took a deliberate step forward.

    “Nothing to say for yourself, I see?” he asked coldly, raising his weapon. “Good. No words can defend your actions, blackheart. Now… come on and slam!”

    ((Rolling to attack Lichnomancer, with base attack bonus of 7 and dexterity bonus of 3: !roll 1 20 + 10))

    Of course, how dice rolls are actually done in your RPG, if it even has them, is up to you. There are numerous sites out there to help with dice rolls and all sorts of character sheets, a few of which will be listed at the end of the section.

    Finally, RPGs should be played with the message board format in mind. Having maps, precise distances, and other visuals on a message board may be impractical, so using abstract distances or a more rudimentary system might work better. If a game mechanic refers to a session, perhaps a session could be taken to mean a long period of rest, since RPGs on message boards are essentially continuous. Above all, keep in mind that the RPG’s events and actions won’t be moving as fast as it would if everyone was around a real table.

    Signups for RPGs should play out similarly to normal RP applications, with a sign-up sheet like the example in the above section. This way people can be admitted based on character concepts and nobody will have to go through the painstaking process of filling out a character sheet, only to have it turned down.

    Orokos Dice Roller: This site lets people roll dice and easily detail and link the results, and only needs a simple, free sign up. The site also has a few resources for Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition, which might be applicable to some other things as well.
    Myth Weavers: This site, with a free signup, has character sheet templates for over 20 game systems that are easily accessible and edited online. If you need a place to organize character sheets and track all sorts of things, this one is a good choice.

    Section 5. Closing

    Making an RP can be difficult, but it can be just as fun as participating in one yourself. Don’t be afraid to post an RP idea, since by making the thread others can comment and express their interest. With the Proving Grounds and the help of suggestions and the approval process, ideas for an original world or an expansion to an existing one can be refined to meet their full potential.
    Last edited by Lenore; May 3rd, 2014 at 07:09 PM.

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