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Posting and general conduct

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Posting and general conduct

Post by Narrator on Sun Dec 27, 2009 3:16 pm

1.0.0 Conduct
In To Be Gods..., character conflict is expected... even encouraged to some degree. Just as in real life, people will disagree with your decisions and goals and will in turn resist you. However, player conflict will hopefully be kept to a minimum, and will definitely be kept off-list. The following will hopefully help to facilitate this.

1.1.0 On-List
Unless an OOC comment needs to be included in the archives for posterity, or will affect a post to the list, address all OOC comments in private e-mail. No flames or unasked for fluff (i.e. non gaming material) will be tolerated. In the case of fluff, ask for permission before posting anything.

1.2.0 Private Messaging
Private Messaging communication is required for all members in a thread, i.e. you must coordinate your actions off list with your partners. Do not dictate any other characters actions, facial expressions, etc., unless it is an NPC.

2.0.0 Posting
In To Be Gods..., hopefully all players will want to follow all the threads. But just in case this isn't so, certain posting guidelines have been set to make it easy to tell what posts a player has to pay particular attention to.

2.1.0 General Information
As we are creating a story together, there are certain rules in the posting style that will be enforced to ensure that the overall quality of the final product is something that is readable and enjoyable.

2.1.1 Post
Make sure you respond to every move, even if it's a quick note saying "I don't really have something to do so I'll just drink at the bar and make small talk with the bartender." or something. Ideally, you should be posting at least twice a week. If you are unable to post for a time due to say, vacation, or illness, send me an email letting me know. On the other hand, make this the exception, and not the norm. Please try to be as detailed in your posting as possible; though you may know exactly what is going on with your character, descriptions help others to visualize what you are thinking.

2.1.2 Grammar and Spelling
Regardless of what language you are writing in, choppy paragraphs and badly constructed sentences make your writing hard for other people to read. They are also prone to never read your posts if they continually cannot decipher what you read. Most e-mail composers have a spellchecker, so please use it.

2.1.3 Point of View
Always write in third-person, present tense. Say "he does", "she has", and "it is". Avoid first person like the plague; never write your narration with "I did this" and "I did that". Also, for things that someone can interrupt, like in combat or exiting a room, state "he begins to exit the room" or "he heads to the door to leave."

2.1.4 Avoid Bad Posts
There are several different types of posts to be wary of. Each has its own problems:

2.1.4.1 Non-Game-Related Messages
If you feel you've got to say something to the people on the list use “OOC” in the subject header to indicate such things.

2.1.4.2 Rambling Messages That Say Nothing
These messages are usually five miles of irrelevant quotes and old text followed by three lines of new text. This is not only impolite, its incredibly annoying. It borders on spamming... and for the record, spamming will get you banned from playing. Its usually a good idea to quote the message you are replying to in your new response, but only quote applicable text.

2.1.4.3 Messages From The Willingly Oblivious
These messages come about when one player totally ignores something posted by someone else, be it another player or the Storyteller. If you don't like something that's been posted, you are NOT allowed to just ignore it and move on... especially if it came from the Storyteller. Feel free to voice your objection to the Storyteller, in a private message.

2.1.4.4 Super-Hero Syndrome
Though this can be a super hero game, the characters do have limits. Basically a post of this sort involves your character doing things he simply isn't capable of doing, and not responding correctly to his weaknesses. The best example would be a character who should be hobbling around in pain after being grievously wounded, but instead is prancing around like he was Errol Flynn in Captain Blood.

2.1.4.5 Flames
Now, when I say flames, I don't just mean two player characters hurling insults at each other. That's entirely permissible, as it's IC (In-Character). There are two types of Flames – The first is the dirty trick known as the In-Character Flame War. In such a flame fest, two or more players will use their characters to fight each other over problems they are having in real life. You can tell this is going on when two characters who have no reason to be hostile to each other suddenly start fighting. Not good. It screws up the Storyteller's storylines and annoys the hell out of everyone else. The second is the OOC Flame War, in which people directly begin to start nasty arguments. Also not good.

2.1.4.6 Assassin Posts
To put it simply, do not kill, seriously maim, or otherwise destroy another character without both a good cause in the story, and the express permission of the Storyteller. Killing other PCs (or even important NPCs) off because you can without a good story reason is a great way to get booted from the game. “Because I am edgy and gritty” is not a good story reason.

2.1.4.7 Plot Changers
Do not post a message which drastically change the plotline the game follows. The Storyteller is there for a reason, after all, and it's his game, not yours. If you have a good idea for a plotline, contact the Storyteller.

2.1.5 Dialog Presentation

When Presenting Dialog, Use The Correct Encapsulating Characters To Help Identify How The Dialog Is Being Heard By Others. The correct dialog conventions are as follows:

"Use quotation marks here," the speaker said aloud.
<<Double angled brackets are an indication of a foreign language being spoken,>> said a voice in perfectly accented Vordanian.
::Typed text, such as that appearing in a book or in a tome, should appear in double colons::, the hero read.
*Asterixes are used here* the man thought to himself.
{Squiggly brackets are used here}, came the mysterious telepathic voice in your head.


2.1.6 The Storyteller's Word Is Law
The Storyteller is always willing to listen to opposing opinions, but never, ever present your opposing opinion to them on the game's mailing list. Send it privately. And if the Storyteller ever says something along the lines as "my decision stands", let the issue go. I mean it, let it drop. Continuing to argue after I have reached a decision is not a smart thing to do.

2.1.7 Be Heard, But Don't Shout Others Down
If you're naturally quiet, try to post often enough to at least be recognized as being around. If you're a big talker, be silent once in a while and let someone else get a word in edgewise.

2.1.8 Avoid Time Crunches
Basically, this means reply to a new move in a timely fashion. Sure, sometimes it's impossible, but at least make the effort. It also means avoid spiraling timescales. It is rare that an action CAN and MUST take place at such and such a time and no later. If you can do something later and thereby avoid wedging in an unnecessary action now, you'll be the Storyteller's friend for life. The game cannot move forward if everyone is always trying to get the last word in. Don't do this if you can help it.

2.1.9 Treat These Games As If They Were Games
No one is going to come up with a cure for cancer while typing away at these stories... and these stories don't promote world peace. They're just games. This actually has three meanings:

First, it means never forget that your life isn't changed just because your character gets reamed.
Second, remember that your actions can either contribute to the group enjoyment or take away from it. It's up to you whether or not you have fun.
Third, if your real life is interfering in your game play, see to your real life first.

2.1.10 The Rule of the Storyteller
If You Become A Problem, You Will Be Removed. If your posts are constantly unclear and hard to understand/follow, you will be removed. It's not that hard.

This has nothing to do with what your character does with the other characters - that should be whatever it takes to keep him or her in character. It involves other real people and whether or not they're enjoying the game with you in it. Be considerate and polite whenever possible. Remember.... If You Become A Problem, in any manner, You Will Be Removed.

2.2.0 Header Syntax
Indicate Location, time and date in Header. post them in Bold.

2.2.1 Threads
Follow rules above and declare OOC (Out Of Character) what you are Intending to do. Do not assume automatic success. You never know what the ST has lurking around the corner or behind that door.

2.3.0 Body
The body of the post contains all actions that the character wishes to accomplish. Since the characters in most cases will be larger than life, the player is allowed to assume his victory except when in conflict with another Nova, metahuman, or supernatural, but remember that adversity brings progress, so at times you may wish to let a baseline (unaltered human) win over your character. Role-playing will be watched, so if you post a perfect character, remember that you may get you an "earning of the rights" at the hands of the Storyteller by way of an INTERVENTION. During an INTERVENTION, the players may not assume victory, but must post what they wish to do, and the Storyteller will adjudicate the outcome once all players in that particular scene have stated their actions.

2.3.1 Location of Action
Begin the body section of the post with LOCATION: [location] to indicate the geographic location where this post is occurring.

2.3.2 Indication of Action
To make the posts uniform and easier to follow, the following conventions will be in use. They are not mandatory, but they are suggested. Indicate the post that you are responding to, by putting [old] before it, and your part by putting [new] before it. If there are several participants, use the name instead, and if you reference an older post (i.e. not in immediate chronological order, but for general reference) put [older] in front of that section.

2.4.0 Footer Syntax
While at the end of the post, the footers are no less important for indication of planned flow of the story, or to indicate OOC comments that will affect the flow of the story, thus must be included in the post.

2.4.2 OOC Direction
All posts by characters should be in character, from dialog to combat, using only in character knowledge and abilities. To indicate additional direction, include it in the OOC portion of the footer.

Example Post:
Header:include location

Body:
Location: Night City Grand Auditorium

[Core] player name
Roaring in anger more than pain, Core rockets a backhand at Nightfall, attempting to smash the annoyances skull with his powerful hand.

[Storyteller]
Core connects with a glancing strike, but Nightfall recovers dropping to the ground in a defensive stance, shaking off the hit.

[new]
Breathing heavily, Nightfall looks at Core, glowing in the dim light of the arena. ~He's grown too powerful. And I'm running out of juice. It's now or never.~

Nightfall leaps toward Core, executing a perfect leaping crescent kick aimed at his head. "End of the line Core. I'm taking you down!"

<<OOC>>at bottom of post: Nightfall is not actually trying for a head kick. He is feinting, so the kick to the head will actually be aimed towards his side. On a hit, nightfall will release his darkforce attack full force into Core's side. If Nightfall notices Rose sneaking up, he will abort his attack to attempt to flee.

3.0.0 Characters
Now the part we have been waiting on. Character creation. The rules will be a bit different than normal to allow for the PBEM concept. Each player is allowed one character to begin with. The character can have erupted anywhere from 1 months to a 9 months ago.

3.1.0 Concepts
The first step is to visualize a concept for your character. E-mail your character ideas to me, and you can even make a draft if you are really itching to, though it may have to change. If you decide to make an actual draft, use 40 Nova Points. But more important is your human background, and an in character bit about what you would do with the power to shape humanity.

4.0.0 Conflicts
During the course of play, conflicts are inevitable. "Without struggle there is no progress." If a conflict occurs between a Nova and a baseline, the Nova can assume a win, though for plot purposes you may want to lose; an invincible character is boring, and can call the attention of the Storyteller in an unfavorable light. If a conflict occurs between two Novas, or in the case of an INTERVENTION post, the conflict rules below will apply.

4.1.0 Combat
Always remember that in conflicts, success is not assured. Therefore, there are rules to determine posts that have a chance of failure.

4.1.1 Hitting
The active player should post his moves and then an OOC statement about what he is trying to accomplish if this is not obvious. Then, in the case of a PC vs. PC combat, the other PC will be given an opportunity to post his defensive actions. The storyteller will perform all dice rolling, and post a bit describing the outcome. Then it goes on with another turn. In the case of NPC vs. PC, the storyteller will post an attack for the NPC then the PC can respond then the result post will be sent, or if the PC is the active person, the result and the NPC's action will be posted at the same time. Descriptive posts are encouraged, and even during combat, role-playing will be rewarded.

4.1.2 Damage
If a character gets hit, it is probably he will take damage. This damage will be described, not given in absolute numbers. If a character is a medical prodigy or has some way to keep up with their exact health, then and only then will the storyteller tell him what wound level he is down to. Diagnosis out of combat will do the same thing.

4.2.0 Non-Combat
Out of combat, once again, a Nova can assume victory over a baseline character. Only during a moderated thread or in the case of a conflict between two Novas will these conflicts be directed. Note that if the Nova has bid down the active attribute, then in the case of using that attribute he will never be able to take advantage of the Nova's certainty of success.

An example of a bad post:

I look around to see who is close by. Then I jump over the rail and kick the brick on the ground in front of me towards the first criminal, hitting him in the head. As he falls to the ground, I race to the second opponent, handily disarming him with a chop to his weapon hand as I break his leg will a well placed kick.

This post assumes the success of the character, and is written in first-person present tense. The following post shows a corrected version of the above:

Patriot glanced around, looking to see if anyone was close to him. After taking assessment of the scene, he jumped over the rail. Even as he landed, Patriot's foot lashed out at a convenient brick, kicking it in an arc towards the first criminal's head. Without waiting to see the results of the kick, Patriot races towards his second opponent, chopping his hand towards the man's weapon hand with the intent to disarm him as he simultaneously kicks the criminal's leg, aiming to break it.

Not that the second post does not conclusively state the results of the attack, and is posted in third-person past tense, though otherwise it is the same. If an action depends on the success or failure of another action, the player can also post conditional actions. For example, the post above could have read as follows:

Patriot glanced around, looking to see if anyone was close to him. After taking assessment of the scene, he jumped over the rail. Even as he landed, Patriot's foot lashed out at a convenient brick, kicking it in an arc towards the first criminal's head.

OOC- If the criminal is disabled, then:

IC: Patriot races towards his second opponent, chopping his hand towards the man's weapon hand with the intent to disarm him as he simultaneously kicks the criminal's leg, aiming to break it.

OOC- Else:

IC: Patriot used the brick as a distraction as he raced behind it in a flying kick, aimed at the man's chest.

One other thing to note from the post. If the Storyteller does not explicitly state that a minor object is not in the scene, the player can assume that his character comes across that object as needed, i.e. the brick in the scene. However the player could not assume that Patriot found a pistol conveniently lying on the ground.
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