ROLE-PLAYING FOR DUMMIES #2:

How To Portray Abilities & Traits

At Which Your Character Excels IC, That You Don't, OOC

[LAST UPDATED 2-10-06; WORKSHOP HELD ONLINE 8-23-05]

*BACK*

 

  • Have you ever had trouble trying to portray someone who is too different from you in ways that make it hard for you to play a believable person with a certain skill or trait?

  • Do you find yourself confused or overwhelmed, trying to do certain things you don't really know anything about OOC, so the RP comes off stilted, fake, or outright incorrect?

  • Then, this guide is for you!

 

The best advice on this topic, is likely to be too late, if you're here now. That is, to give these things thought when you're first building the character, and if you feel you're over your head, don't make them that way. However, poop happens, so we'll tackle this from the vantage point that you're already locked in with the stats and traits you have, and now you have to make them work out for you and be believable and useful.

You might be playing someone who is a cop, or a chef, or a politician, or a mechanic, or an artist. They could be the opposite gender from you. They could be a foreign culture or race. They could be a lot older or younger, or nicer or meaner than you. So how do you play someone whose personality is so alien to your own?

 


[a] FIRST STEP: When you are in the process of building the PC, or right now, if you already have it built and running, identify and list any skills, interests, heritage, culture or behaviours that you wrote in, that you feel you can't relate to, are bad at personally, or know too little about them to portray them to others. Pre-emptively take stock of these.

 

[b] IDENTIFY ROLE-MODELS: Find and study some serious (as in not satirical or exaggerated) characters from books, TV, movies, comics, etc. that represent, in your mind, the quality or skill you're stuck on. **Ask your ST or other players if they believe those characters are in fact similar to your PC.** You can learn a lot about your ability to convey the message by whether others see the same thing you are.

 

[c] IDENTIFY REAL LIFE EXAMPLES: Find and talk to people who actually share the trait you are having trouble with. Ask them what "it" is really like. Observe them. Ask them about stereotypes; how accurate are they? (or aren't they?) If you don't know any real life sources, ask other players, your ST, etc. They might.

 

[d] PURPOSE OF THE TRAIT: Get clarify on what function having this trait serves. Ask yourself, "What is destroyed if I took this out or changed it to something else?" Does it give the PC a sense of heritage? History? Uniqueness? When you understand why the trait must be what it is, you will be better able to express it as well, because you know where you're going with it.

 

[e] GOOGLE (Or the Internet in general): Google is your friend. Imperfect but easy and plentiful examples to research.

 

[f] PLAY YOUR STATS: When all else fails in ROLE Play, this is one acceptable time to ROLL Play. Just give it your best effort and then ask the ST for some form of roll to better reflect what your abilities should show, not what you are able to show.

 

 


 

PLAYER NOTES AND COMMENTS FROM THE ACTUAL WORKSHOP (8/23-24/05):

 

Tonight is about Role-playing things that your character is better at than you are.

The best advice on this topic, is likely to be too late, if you're here now.

That is, to give these things thought when you're first building the character, and if you feel you're over your head, don't make them that way.

However, "poop happens", so we'll tackle this from the vantage point that you're already locked in with the stats and traits you have, and now you have to make them work out for you and be believable and useful.

You might be playing someone who is a cop, or a chef, or a politician, or a mechanic, or an artist. They could be the opposite gender from you. They could be a foreign culture or race. They could be a lot older or younger, or nicer or meaner than you. So how do you play someone whose personality is so alien to your own?...

 


 

On [A] FIRST STEP, there were no additional relevant comments.

 


 

On [B] IDENTIFYING ROLE MODELS, there were no additional relevant comments.

 


 

On [C] IDENTIFYING REAL LIFE EXAMPLES:

 

Player1: Hard to find some one that knows a lot more about say.. streetwise.. that they are willing to talk about. Or subterfuge for that matter.
ST1: Well that may be one specific example where you may not find anyone IRL
Player1: "So.. you're good at lying?" Answer.. "No."
ST1: Subterfuge was easy for me (laughs). I just imitate (player). Even though I'm being a smart ass that actually was truthfully helpful
Player1: But aside from skills.. how do you play some one more perceptive than you.
ST1: ok. Let's take that as an example.
Player1: I mean .. you either are.. or you aren't. and it's difficult to notice the little details IRC without having to ask for them.
ST1: Are you concerned with acting perceptive (The posing) or BEING perceptive as in your character should catch clues you are missing?
Player1: The second.
ST1: ok that's a little bit different than what I'm covering but I'll explain the difference. What I'm talking about here, is how to role-play someone like that, IC.
Player1: Think of Sherlock Holmes eyeing some one.. there's a LOT of information there.. clues people don't even know are there.
ST1: not the game mechanic of catching clues OOC. BUT. (And the next class is on Plot Hooks incidentally so you gave me a good segue) If your character is a lot smarter or brighter than you are being OOC, sometimes you can just do exactly what I've had you doing, which is to simply make rolls for things you should know. For example, Your PC is reading a strange occult scroll. Your PC is like, Linguistics 5 but you're barely linguistics 2 on a good day. If you don't pick up on your own, that it's written in Egyptian, then I might have you roll Int + Occult if they are really high (assume in this example they would be, and be higher than yours should be if your OOC Self were a PC). If the DICE say you should know stuff and you made the roll, I would just tell you stuff you missed.
Player1: Um.. there's NO way to pick up it's Egyptian OOC.
ST1: Sure there is. the fact that you think there isn't, shows how narrow your vision is for where clues are. that is what is trapping you. Plenty of ways to pick up on it, **IF** you had that knowledge OOC.
Player1: *blinks* How? Unless you see the scroll in question.
ST1: I'm telling you.
Player1: *listens*
ST1: OBVIOUSLY, I'm going to describe it to you. Since, duh, this is a written medium. If you, Joe Player, are kind of occult blind and language blind IRL, but the PC is supposed to be some hot shit archaeologist, and you're not catching on, the ST is going to start dropping hints about the item. like, it's made in a certain style that suggests a (blot) time period. Or the form of the writing suggests it is (Egyptian) If you have the stats to where you SHOULD notice these things.
Player1: So it's really the ST's call how much Information to drop depending on your stats?
ST1: sometimes. This is a highly subjective thing, you see. The method I am giving you now wouldn't work with some other kinds of information. see, you are asking about OOC System, Dice, gaming method. Not about RP. this isnt a question about how to play someone smarter, its a game mechanics question about how to get information you should be entitled to, according to your stats, if your OOC brain isn't hitting it. those are different issues than what I was getting at, but I'll answer it so it will help you
Player4 raises her hand and waits patiently for her turn.
ST1: Yes?
Player4: No, I can wait, dude. Just looking to be put on the docket for next question.
ST1: ok. is it making any more sense yet? Or better yet why don't you put an actual for real example on the table of a time you had to deal with this
Player1: Hmmm.. well A form fitting example is hard to come by. But lets see.. Ok just for simplicities sake.. the Church. I'm still hazy on its exact layout. What's near what, who sleeps where.. how far from the door to the hallway, etc.
Player3: why not make the layout yourself? paintbrush
ST1: We've never mapped it out. And he can't, I designed it. I don't understand how that's relevant to this topic however,.
Player1: It leaves me unsure of what I can and can not notice, or what I can expect to be noticed and expect not to be noticed depending on range, lighting etc.
ST1: That's more a case of your famous overanalyzing again.
Player3: [[ you ask ]]
ST1: What real relevance is it to the RP if you know the exact corner Trent sleeps in? And what if he moves?
Player1: Don't know.. usually none. Sometimes lots.
ST1: Got to do better.
Player3: question
ST1: If you're going to ask this stuff we're going to go over with a microscope, hon. Pick a specific example. This is more a broad "I'm vague on the church so sometimes I don't do this and that" is way too big. Let's come back to it, Player3 hang onto your question, I want to get Player4's, she's been waiting
Player3: if your char is suppose to be perceptive and you have no clue the set up for some place, how do you play that out?
ST1: you don't, that's an OOC issue. Hang on. Player4...
Player4: Oh -- mine is just in a different area.
ST1: you want me to deal with Player3's and then yours, then?
Player4: Sure, that's fine. I'm patient.:)
ST1: ok... Player3... as far as the Set up for a place, that is a game mechanics issue also, not a role-playing issue. Most of the time I at least have a web page for any regular venue we have. The Church was a little harder, since i didn't really design it, WW did. If you're standing right there IC and you SHOULD know what it looks like IC, but OOC you don't, you do not RP that out. Its not relevant IC. Its something to be dealt with only OOC. Do you guys understand the point I'm making yet?
Player3: yes, loud and clear
Player1: I think so.
ST1: Ok if you have another question let me know, I'm going to move to Player4's for right now. lay it on me
Player4: I think I have a decent grasp of conveying emotion, nuances, feelings-- the sort of thing that gives us depth in the game. What do I do when no one gets it, though? It's so blasť to come right out about it, and it's frustrating to try and convey something with no one getting it.
ST1: Well... That sort of is subjective. You might check in with the ST in private first and see if you are RP'ing the desired trait clearly. Start there. If the answer is yes... It may be OOC other player lack of perception.
Player4: Is there any way to fix that?
ST1: in which case, sadly, yeah sometimes you do have to just jump up and down and point and go Look I'm being (whatever you're being)
Player4: Good advice.
ST1: Well do you recall an example of any time that it's happened to you? That you were trying to convey a trait and nobody got it?
Player4: Sure. In Gehenna, when Matilda was in the alternate church and needed to show a big life changing epiphany. It felt to me like I was acting it as genuinely as could be, and any more would be unrealistic to the character. So I guess my larger question is this: How do you convey emotion or ideas, etc., without selling out? If your character is stoic, and the general public doesn't recognize nuances, what then? I'm just sometimes stuck.
ST1: Well shall I let you in on a little secret about that scene that might help?
Player3: YES!
ST1: You weren't there ;p
Player3: errr, um yes, please do. and I'm also dead, what storyline am I gonna ruin?
ST1: Hers, it ain't done ;p
Player4: yes ma'am.
ST1: You were portraying an Epiphany. but an Epiphany wasn't the key to getting out. You were looking for feedback in the wrong place.
Player3: how? I play a grunting growling missing link?!?!
ST1: There were extremely specific things I wanted from each character. Chad went through hell with this. I wanted Mattie to come to a very specific conclusion. So that scene wasn't about your authenticity. So maybe that will help you relax about not being understood, some
Player6: however i did get the opportunity to get Icey to play a mean dominatrix *licks his lips*
ST1: I think he farted around in the other church on purpose just cuz I hadn't opened Bound anytime recently ;p
Player4: Got it. Sometimes it's guesswork, then.
ST1: Well... It can be. Yeah. Kind of like in Real life. There's times in real life where you mean it and people don't understand you
Player4: That's true. Excellent point. Thanks. :)
ST1: But see, role-playing is an art form. Like any art form - theater, music, art, you have to hit the common denominator whether it's how you normally OOC react or not. You need to be heard. and understood
Player4: What was my specific conclusion, by the way? You didn't have to water it down for me, did you?
Player3: dude you're sick
ST1: You can ask me when Gehenna is over :) you know part of it, if you think on it. and no I only lightened it for one person, they know who they are, and why I did it, it's been discussed

 


 

On [D] KNOW THE PURPOSE OF THE TRAIT, there were no additional relevant comments.

 

ST1: This sometimes helps, but not always, Depends on the trait. This is more for stuff like... How do I play someone who's 200 years old from Hungary when I'm 22 and live in Florida. WHY does the PC have to be 200 and not 40. WHY do they have to be born in Hungary. WHY are they good at Art? What would it matter if they weren't? the answers don't have to be fancy. its more to get your head on straight
Player4: Like that anorexia idea i was tossing around-- it makes no sense to have a PC who suffers from that unless it will directly impact her RP or her personality.
ST1: exactly. that's why I wasn't too thrilled with it. Cuz like you said, what meaning does that really have?
Player4: and conversely, Mat's mom is dead, so that might give her a little misdirection by way of maternal instinct or female nature, or might make her sort of yearns for a mom figure or something.
ST1: now if that char were the daughter (this is commonly a girl's disease) of a famous NPC and her illness would make drama, then its relevant
Player4: Sweet. Lots of angles.
ST1: exactly

 


 

On [E] USING GOOGLE (or Searching the Web in General) for Help:

 

ST1: this next one to me is massively obvious but some people don't think of it.
Player3: don't make a char without it
ST1: Bingo.
Player4: I have a hard time with this one. I'm being honest.
ST1: how so?
Player3: actually yes I can
ST1: That's fine, Player4, let's talk about it
Player4: I use Google, but sometimes information is scarce. Like Farida, my voodoo guru.
ST1: well that can vary depending on the search terms you use
Player3: voodoo's easy. if you can't find a topic, ask in the OOC channel, I'm good at it, ST1 is, ST4 is
ST1: Sometimes if you pick something obscure, its harder but I would recommend trying at least
Player4: It seems that the only stuff I can find is wikipedia, which is cool, but vague as hell. ...and like, I wanted to have a character with a
French accent, but I can't find a website that'll show me how to fake one.

ST1: You know what I would highly have recommended for Farida? Two movies, must see. Angel Heart, and Serpent and the Rainbow. They can be net-flixed easily
Player4: Yeah? I've never seen them. And I appreciate y'all saying you'll help. I'll keep that in mind from now on.
ST1: Yeah if I had realized you didn't know that much about how to portray Voodoo, I would have said something earlier. Absolutely use each other as a resource, that is WHY I made the Yahoogroups
Player4: It's fun, but I'm just totally sunk with her, so now I dislike her because I don't know how to play her well. Sucks.
ST1: well Player4... lets just see what joy there is left in Farida and use it as a lesson for next time. Sometimes you make a PC that's just... Broken. it happens. as far as faking an accent goes? honestly you have been doing pretty well typing a Creole dialect, And that's what I would have Googled to do that, which you still can for the remainder of running her
Player4: Right.
ST1: I will say this, and this is just my personal opinion on it, as a polyglot. I think the RP is much more authentic when people at least
ATTEMPT to convey their linguistic habits. Even better, if you actually speak the language

Player4: Yeah, that's the only part I like about her. lol.
ST1: I cant tell you how many times I have thrown players by actually using the language IC
Player4: That, and that she's not pretty and more than a little awkward.
ST1: well let's back up for a minute Player4
Player3: ST3's nifty with Jay like that
ST1: when you first made her.... what did you want her to become? What was your vision for her?
Player4: I wanted her to be a little spooky, sort of archaic in practices, very superstitious.
Player1: Heh.. just watch the language use. From personal experience it's best not to start with a character that has a penchant for
understatement.

Player4: It's just that things are already so established with the garou, it's so hard to break in.
ST1: that's not a linguistics issue though
Player1: or for using words like penchant. :P
ST1: I'm talking about... With ice for example. She has linguistics 5. And I run her that way. And I made use of the fact I actually know most of the languages she does. (Which I didn't actually plan out, believe it or not, the RP she did dictated it). So I actually type in Japanese, in Gaeilge, in Arabic, in French, in Latin, when I know how. It makes things interesting to say the least. with Rae I type in Russian. And so forth.

But back to Farida.... ok Player4. What does "Spooky" look like? Because in my opinion, and I hope you might come to share it... I think Farida can be rescued some to be more like you had hoped, at least enough so that finishing playing her wont be such a chore but might be fun.
Player4: I don't know what spooky looks like. I'm a dolt.
ST1:Well let's give it a shot.
Player3: go Player4
ST1: Spooky, at least to me, is someone who is very serious, emotionally, for one. intense. Agree?
Player1: Shadowy.. Grey.. not dark.. dark's not spooky just scary. But shadowy is good. staring at/through people is always a good one.
ST1: So someone who is hard to read, yes, Player1?
Player4: Okay, that's good. But how do you measure 'hard to read'?
ST1: You don't know what's on their mind easily.
Player1: Yes but with that added kick that you just.. don't "want" to read them..
ST1: Ice is extremely easy to read. unless you're empathetically retarded. Jay is the opposite.
Player3: bajang could read her...anyone can read ice
ST1: But he's not Spooky, he lacks a certain sinister wildness. So there needs to be a slight undertone that what you dont know about them is dangerous. or at least... uncomfy
Player4: That makes sense.
ST1: unpredictable
Player1: aye being abrupt is good..
ST1: Spooky also is interested in unusual and archaic and occult things. The Bizarre.
Player4: ...but it's hard to reach that level when everyone else is also engaged in 'dangerous' things too.
Player1: two people are talking and just interrupting with a "No"......
ST1: Not necessarily. Everyone else doesn't take away from you playing it correctly. The idea is to be understood, not to compete
Player4: But how do you become something when everyone else is the same?
ST1: how does what they do even affect you?    A: It doesn't.
Player4: How can she be particularly interesting when everyone else is more interesting?
ST1: you *ARE* what you are. Alone or in a room of a hundred people
Player1: Heck some people don't mind spooky.
ST1: Its not about being interesting. Its about being Spooky, in this case.
Player4: But I love interesting.
ST1: What interests people can vary wildly. But not the point, sugar bear.
Player4: Yeah, I hear ya.
ST1: Interesting is more of an opinion. SPOOKY is pretty universal.
Player1: we all want to be intriguing.. but sometimes we just have to be.
ST1: You want to convey her correctly, FIRST.
Player4: Good point.
ST1: Then worry about impressing the 10 other spooky people. Or conversely if you fit right in with em, then you're still correct, if not very original ;p
Player4: Good call.
ST1: But in all seriousness. if you made her more... Serious... not so "new and in awe of the world"... Think about this. people from non American cultures that are thought of as very wise, how do they act? The Native Americans. Asian religions or Martial artists. The Ancient Celts and druids.
Player4: How do you change something that is already rolling, though?
ST1: You just start, tonight. There is no reason anyone is going to criticize you for some revelation of correct RP. you just do it.
Player4: But doesn't that sort of 180 mess up RP?
ST1: well.... even if it does, we just correct it.
Player1: Not really.
ST1: You should never be afraid to do the right thing. Player1's been through this. If its 180'ing anything, its something that maybe NEEDED 180'ing. But if it makes her more fun to play, and more ACCURATE then do it
Player1: It's just Giving people what they think you should have been all along.
ST1: exactly
Player4: good point.
ST1: she was written to be more spooky than she is. Perhaps you can IC blame it on the coming Events. they *ARE* very stressy. a lot of PC's are acting odd
Player4: Yeah. She's just an intentional joke right now, though.
ST1: But you do not have to keep her there. I hereby give you ST permission to start right now and make her more fun.
Player4: Faaantastic.
ST1: She may feel a little off but at least you wont dread being her so much. Its ok to finish off playing her in excellence.
Player4 nods.
Player4: Well said. Does it take a long time?

ST1: Well... (sighs) That can depend.. Two comments to that. one.... I'm not a good example, I'm a professional actor. However I have actually been using Theater techniques to teach you guys. Stanislavsky (Method acting) if you know what it is. And the second thing is... That depends on how vastly different you are from the PC
Player4: Okay. Will it take ME a long time? :)
ST1: Do you know how to be spooky OOC?
Player1 is all about the Method RP.
Player4: Ha.
ST1: I'm being serious, doll
Player4: Not at all.
ST1: Then it MIGHT take a while... Although.... If you are stuck, do what we are doing tonight. Ask for help: You can go like "OK I have to play a PC who is very spooky and I don't feel like I'm doing it right, can people make suggestions" and they will
Player4 nods.
ST1: Or "I am playing someone from the French Quarter of New Orleans" does anyone know about that
Player4: Good suggestions.
ST1: and like the movies I told you about, Go rent them, I think you will feel a LOT better about playing her
Player4: I'm sorry I jeopardized all y'alls time with my questions.
ST1: no no no that's what this is FOR. you are showing an example of this in action - real examples are the best ones
ST3: What kind of spooky do you want to do? There are, as in all things, a lot of gradations and variants
ST1: She's talking about Farida. So spooky like Angel Heart, or Serpent and the Rainbow
Player3: no biggie Player4, I've picked up a few things
ST1: Yes you have certainly done that, Player3
Player1: It's no problem Player4. that's what this is for.
Player4: I should head to bed, y'all. Thanks for your help again-- I'll be on tomorrow, too.

 


 

On [F] WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS, PLAY YOUR STATS AS WRITTEN (i.e.: DICE IT):

 

ST1: That's the last formal thing I had, afterwards we can just talk about examples. I did that very thing with Ice at the Conclave. The letter I wrote back to the Justicariate, well Ice has Diplomacy 5 but I wasn't feeling all that correct. So I wrote up a letter but along with it I also made a dice roll for it. So just in case OOC I wasn't feeling too silvery tongued that the PC was entitled for the letter to be received as more correct than I am
Player6: that's mostly how i play my magi too...cause...those guys are more knowledgeable then i could ever dream to be. Especially the SoE and their nifty toys. Anywho...you just roll for the astrophysics stuff...yeah.
ST3: The thing to remember is... Actors don't have to be able to really do everything their characters are supposed to be able to
Player1: Ok then I have a very Key question that's been bugging me. How much are we allowed to "Ask the ST's" before we just become a pain in the ass?
ST3: They just have to SOUND like they can.
ST1: That's subjective, Player1 ;p
Player3: usually everything I ask falls into the pain in the ass category
ST1: First off I would ask you, Why are you trying to play a character that's so incredibly not like you that the ST practically has to play them for you?
Player1: Ah well.. then I counter.. "Why does the ST feel I'm playing a character that is so Unlike me." and I'm not really referring to Vander. As you said, it's subjective.
ST1: If you have to ask the ST how to do something almost every night, that is a sign that you are playing someone you don't understand at all.
Player1:There needs to be an agreement between the ST the player, the player and the other players, on who and what they are. This can take some ironing.
ST1: an agreement of who and what they are in what sense?
Player3: or you're asking the st for permission, sounds like someone who's afraid to play their char
ST1: That too. I do not mind questions.
Player1: *raises his eyebrows*
Player1: Very Astute .. yes. That, in fact, was one of those really big flaws I was/am having with Vander. I became too frightened to play him the way I thought he should be.
Player3: if someone's afraid to play their char, A. need a new char, B. need to work on existing char, C. need to play somewhere else
ST1: Where it gets annoying is when: [a] Im getting the same questions repeatedly and the player is not absorbing the answer, or [b] It's
something really obvious and shows me the player was just lazy about the answer... or [c] If they want to play something they just cant grasp (most often because they think it sounded cool)

Player6: Just do stuff, if its bad, Casey or Jon will go 'WOAH, KNOCK THAT OFF YOU DUMB ASS. SCENE VOID!'
ST1: yeah... well Player6 I actually did that in Gehenna already once ;p The problem you ran into with Vander, Player1, is not accurately
portraying the traits he actually has. hence the prior workshops You wrote someone who is supposed to be a Hero kind of dude.

Player1: Indeed. I am mentioning the reason(s) behind that lack.
ST1: but he didn't act like one at all, and you would blame it on the chaos of the events in the world... but so what? Every PC has experienced the same chaos. So you were inaccurately conveying "Hero" to the other people. that's what held that up. so in a broader sense... asking occasional questions is fine. Asking Is this right, is that right, every night... means you really just don't know how to role-play someone else.
Player3: he sounds like a false hero....a wannabe hero
ST1: well on paper, he isn't false. This was an OOC issue of not portraying what was on the paper, which is what we are working on correcting

Player3: ahhhh
ST1: the choices of actions came off false, and they were the kinds of actions that would do that. This is why those actions are no longer
occurring. On paper he was kind of like a Jay Archetype. With some changes. So this is about conveying that to others.

Player6: in practice he's a douche - no offense :P
ST1: Yes but he's not supposed to be ;p so we're working on that
Player1: Douche, stick up his ass, Poseur, shallow, I've heard 'em all. No offence taken.
Player3: if he's scared...he needs to get a pair and just play the char...relax and try to enjoy Vander
ST1: I think the issue here is Player1 has trouble with universalities. What he thinks something looks like, sometimes doesn't read that way to others. that's tough to correct but one thing you can do, as I've said then and say now, is check in with people for second opinions. You and I sat down with Vander and did just that, the whole "Name Five characters who are like Vander and why" thing we did
Player3: but don't do it to much, then you're all needy and asking for acceptance
ST1: that was highly, deeply informative about how you perceive him in your head and how he's coming off to everyone else
Player1: And appreciated. It's also a two way street though. As I learn what to show, others learn what to look for.
 

ST1: True. Sometimes it really can be a case of someone RPing correctly and other players being dense. That has happened. I got an
example of that one. Brett. Brett played a lot of Maori Characters. New Zealand Aborigines.

Player3: that was off, people telling him out to be Australian
ST1: Exactly where I'm going with this. A lot of people whined that he was fucking up stuff, but he wasn't. He was being true to that culture. its very violent and very bigoted. I wrote a four page email defending what he did with news articles and examples. Brett was RPing correctly and other players were just being stupid. Ok.... More questions about how to play stuff you don't understand OOC?


Player1: Ok the biggest one.. and I ask this for the group not me. How do you play some one with and Intelligence of 5 or in some cases 6 or even 7?
ST3: with dice.
ST1: Basically.
Player1: *laughs* Well that was easy.
ST1: I can in all complete honesty say mine would be a 5. Based on my IQ scores.
ST3: raw intellect is the hardest thing to bullshit.
ST1: Intelligence doesn't look one way. But yeah what ST3 said. Intelligence is a thing that only matters, in matters of intellect. Like how does a person with Int 6 walk into a room versus someone with Int 1? Answer: Same way. On your feet.
Player1: Same here.. but smarts ain't that useful Especially High end smarts.
ST1: Ain't that useful for what?
Player1: Thoughtfully.
ST1: What does being thoughtful look like? in an action. describe thoughtful
Player6: stroking your beard whilst looking up at the ceiling. that's thoughtful
Player1: Sorry.. Ain't that useful for personal interactions, or even mundane chores. I've met some reaaally stupid Geniuses in my day.
ST1: ok.... that's not about intellect, Player1. do not confuse that with common sense.
Player1: True.
Player3: sounds like Einstein...big math brain, bad basic math
ST1: Knowing the physics of fire doesn't stop some geniuses from smoking it
ST3: There is such a thing as the "educated idiot" syndrome. aka, the character with 18 int and 3 wisdom
ST1: It also doesn't mean someone isn't smart in some other manner. intellect, IQ, is education and book smarts and intellect, and NOTHING ELSE. its not wisdom, its not instincts, its not empathy
ST3: It's raw CPU capacity
Player1: Ok cool.. so we're all on the same page with that one. Good to know.
Player6: being really smart doesn't mean you know HOW to do everything. means you might grasp the concept quicker then most when shown though
ST3: which the biggest, fastest CPU in the world isn't worth beans without good programming... by the same token, a person with Marilyn vos Savant's IQ and no education... is a really adaptable savage, but they won't be able to program a computer or perform heart surgery
Player3: just because you can guess the story plot line doesn't mean you actually grab all the plot hooks. it's sooooo true and you know it
Player1: So to sum up the highlights of tonight. Research.. ask questions, ask more questions, and if that doesn't work, don't play that
character.
ST1: Player3 turned around and just blurted out the hook for the biggest plot we'd ever written. By accident. everyone around her didn't get it. 9 of them died. the highlight of tonight: Research. Use examples. Ask questions and opinions. If it's still not working, you may want to drop it.
Player1: That's awesome. well the blurring out.. the dying.. not so much.
ST3: Well... Darwin's not always a nice guy
ST1: that was one of your most memorable moments
ST3: But if you stand there and stare down the oncoming bus... <shrugs> you weren't the fittest.

 


 

MISCELLANEOUS ADDITIONAL GENERAL COMMENTARY:

 

ON HANDLING UNNATURAL APPEARANCE (6+): 

Player1: Ok one side line question.
ST1: Sure, shoot
Player1: Something mentioned in the logs. If a Character walks in with an App 7 or something else ungodly.. how universal is the reaction?
ST1: At app 7 the book clearly says there will be one.
Player3: drool, pop wood, cat calls, cartoon wolf reaction
ST1: It gives you two extremes. What Player3 said is one of them
Player1: Right.. or jealousy.
ST1: the other, is livid jealousy and loss of control. but at app 7 you are supernaturally beholden not to ignore it. that is beauty beyond human understanding
Player1: But for how long? I mean the first time.. sure... the second time.. yeah.. the third.. maybe.. but after a while do you get used to it?
ST1: no. You never get acclimated to it
Player1: ug.
ST1: What ugh. That is the legitimate reaction to such a thing
ST3: We are talking, physical perfection beyond mortal ken.
ST1: would you ever get used to seeing God?
ST3: Anything that lovely is clearly not of this world.
ST1: only maybe a tiny bit.
Player1: I'm not disagreeing.. I'm just seeing the Ug factor.
ST1: I'm challenging you that it isn't Ug. you're making it bad and wrong, and I don't get why. its appropriate to the creature you are witnessing
Player1: Which is.. say a bank robber is in the middle of a get away.. running from the cops.. bullets flying.. run's into Mrs. Perfect App 7.. and .. stops and drools.
ST1: Yes. They bloody well would. that is completely proper to do when faced with something that his brain cant even totally process the beauty of
Player1: Yeah.. so UG.. that's highly inconvenient.
ST1: Uh... dude?
ST3: It's appropriate.
ST1: the point of stats is not to be convenient to your highness
Player1: I'm not saying it's Wrong!
ST1: it is to convey, what they are there to convey
ST3: role-play isn't about what's convenient, or what's easy to deal with
Player6: a WP point/roll would be necessary to pull yourself away from app 7 persons. it IS possible...yet VERY difficult. again, see dice
ST3: It's what's accurate.
ST1: well nobody WANTS to be Ugh and inconvenient
Player1: gah.. a bus runs me over.. I go splat..
ST1: those are in fact in stone, negative words
Player1: yeas I'll go splat.. but I think Ug is an appropriate reaction.
ST1: its not a trait anyone desires
ST3: Which is why most people with apps that high conceal it somehow
ST1: well that's "Planet trey" stuff. I cant speak to it. Its NOT Ug. You are inventing that.
ST3: crowds of sycophants following you, pied-piper like down the street, or alternately members of the appropriate gender attempting to rape you on a daily basis... Yeah. It gets to be damned inconvenient.
ST1: Its more bloody inconvenient for the character who has it, honey
ST3: That's the drawback of having a godly trait.
ST1: Ice was not physically capable of going out in public. ANYWHERE. for any reason. She would cause commotion just trying to get a coffee.
ST3: look at the poor guy with Str 5 who has to get all his suits custom-tailored cuz even the Big and Tall stores don't have a jacket in 62 long
ST1: when your PC lives like that for years... if there's any Ug to anything, its with the PC who has that App.
Player1: So. just to dig in a little more.. person with App 7 goes out into the street and sees the mob coming their direction to worship them.
ST1: ok... (waits for the rest)
Player1: Are they allowed to say.. "ug" ?
ST1: it would be kind of stupid
Player3: I disagree
ST1: Does God say Ug when people fall down and worship him? it just *IS*. You're thinking of it with a mortal brain.
ST3: "<sigh> here we go again..." more like.
ST1: disagree with what?
Player6: Don't forget, app 7 can also be the most terrifying and scary thing you have ever seen yet is 100% attractive.. that's the scary thing
ST1: precisely. App 7 can frighten someone too.
Player3: it's like being a movie star, they can't go out to get coffee without a problem
ST1: well no, Player3 its far far more than a movie star. A movie star is App 5. They're pretty but they're humans
Player6: got a good dose of that from the Tzimisce clan book
ST1: We're talking something so fucking weird that even though its shiny, people might get scared and hurt it
Player3: up the appearance, up the problems
ST1: Yes. That much is consistent
Player6: People tend to destroy what they do not understand. Thus an app7 person has no choice but to hide.
ST1: there is no "Ug", it's just the correct reaction. No need to put a judgment call on it, and let's face it, Ugh is one.
Player3: why can't ugh be another form of sigh?
ST1: because it's not?
ST3: I'm taking the ug'ing here to be OOC bitching.
ST1: that's like asking why cant Yes be another form of no, its recognized as a negative.
Player1: I'm not sure what Webster says.. but in my experience "ugh" = well.. "Ugh" "this is going to be rough" "this is not going to be fun" "This.. this is going to hurt"
Player3: that sounds like a sigh
Player1: Very much so.
ST3: Which OOC, you picked the stats so you have absolutely no right to be bitching over any trouble that picking those stats buy you. IC, you'd be so used to that sort of thing that there's no point bitching over it.
ST1: And ALL of those are negative, dude. Not one of those is a thing someone wishes to do by choice, embraces. you just succeeded in reiterating my point
Player3: ahhh, very wise, thank you
ST1: and yes what ST3 said as well. Any sighing over it can be IC cuz OOC you bought the damned APP. I don't bitch about people reacting to Ice. I bitch when they don't react. cuz it's shoddy RP
Player3: the lateness is making me sleepy...is class over?
Player7: What about people that have been around said individual for long enough?
Player3: again, would you get use to seeing god? but what if you like grew up with god? or better yet, you were god's cousin?
ST1: Well that wouldn't apply to God but it might to lesser Supernaturals. a vampire or a Fae. And no, Player7, we covered that. Appearance above 5 is NOT a stat you become acclimated to. you react the 100th time as the 5th. You may not be as surprised but you will still feel extreme about it, one way or the other. Its no longer just an aesthetic at that point, its a supernatural effect
Player1: Well that covers that.

 


 

ON CORRECT USE OF LORES (WHEN YOU SHOULD & SHOULDN'T KNOW THINGS):

Player7: This won't be as big of a deal in 2.0 though... App is no longer a trait, the trait that app is part of more so encompasses the sheer presence of the person in question... (If we even want to get into that)
ST1: I think it was more just about how to react correctly to it
ST3: So don't bother making a big billy-badass full moon Blood Talon right out the gate. He'll get to sit and scratch himself a lot.
Player1: Word to the wise.. always be ready to either throw down, or run like hell. I personally love having bad ass characters that go out of their way to avoid combat.
Player7: I was thinking a Elodoth Shadow Lord out the gate... ;P
ST1: You weren't thinking, if you were thinking that ;p
Player7: Storm Lord...
ST3: Why don't you worry about your mortal character that you will be starting play with.
ST1: Is your mortal finished? cuz this wont even be an issue for several months
Player7: Except for actually writing down the back story, yes
ST3: Not the werewolf character that is, at the minimum, a year in the future
Player1: Ok so common sense is an easy one.. No science dots you still don't mix acids and bases.. but what about lores? What does the common Vamp on the street know about.. say Werewolves?
ST1: In 1.0 or 2.0?
ST3: Well, in 1.0 for comparison's sake...
ST1: the common vamp on the street knows not a fucking thing, unless he bought the lore. It does not matter that the player has watched movies and crap, the vamp may not have. half that stuff may not even be true (please note lores ALWAYS mean the correct information)
Player7: And even then you had better have a good reason for the lore... Garou don't go telling vampires about their society
ST1: Exactly, and vice versa.
ST3: At MOST you know, they exist, and they don't like you, and they can probably kick your ass.
ST1: Ice lived with them and I still do not allow her to know some basic things
ST3: anything beyond that requires a lore dot
ST1: because they simply never occurred in front of her, and she's never set foot in a caern in her life
Player1: So Vice Versa.. the common Garou knows nothing about Vampires.
ST1: Yeah the Garou wouldn't know vamps cant just die by touching the bible.
Player7: Darren knows very limited knowledge about some Camarilla clans and the Tzimisce, as Ice did teach him... But even when that comes into RP I ask Ice in PM first
ST1: Right. But you put in the IC RP time of Darren asking ice things, and so he can have those, he earned them
ST3: The common garou knows, they reek of Wyrmtaint, they're flammable, and they live forever unless something kills em. If that much
Player1: Too bad they Can die by Wolf claws.. Garou tend to favor those over bibles.
ST3: Beyond that, pony up for Lore dots
ST1: a little Fort goes a long way
Player1: Not far enough. I've seen player get Str scores in the teen's.
ST3: Not long enough a ways when the wolfy is rolling 8 dice for damage and you're rolling 3 dice to soak...
Player7: Depending on how combat tweaked the Garou you are fighting is
ST1: your average vampire didn't survive Garou by fighting, he survived by other means
Player7: Running
ST1: Dominating him to go to sleep ;pppp
Player1: Vamp's best bet.. Pump the CRAP out of Dex and Run like a mother*&%%er
ST1: we can say fucker here
Player7: cheater... :P
ST1: I didn't cheat, Ice has ST 2 ;p
ST3: <Dom> Sit. Stay. Nice puppy.
Player7: Unless you put the Garou in frenzy, I think that makes dominate a little useless
ST1: Actually not at high levels, There's a Dom 6 or 7 for undoing a frenzy and it works on Puppies
Player7: interesting...
ST1: but dude. how many kindred HAVE that - 2-3 max.
ST3: Presence still works. And a creature in frenzy has their tactical options pretty limited
Player7: Ice! :P
ST1: in the whole game
Player1: Oh well I'll just pony up for that with my 9th gen character.
ST1: Ice, Alex, Jay. that's it
ST3: it's charge at it and rip it apart, or run away from it in terror
Player1: NPC's the lot of em.
ST1: Well of course, such a thing BELONGS with NPCs
ST3: And if the thing you're charging has five pounds of brass hanging between their legs and silver in their shotgun... your frenzied wolf is a rug.
Player1: So rule of thumb.. Celerity is your friend.
Player7: Unless you invested the actual time and rp to get to that level
ST1: well that would still make it more or less an NPC, cuz that's years. remember Ice Alex and Jay are 8 year old PCs, x 200 exp a year average... that's 1600 experience at the modest end. you can buy a metric assload of dots for that
ST3: I've used about half that for Jay and Cat.
ST1: Yeah I maxed Ice out in everything she's earned in Rp and its only 900. I just had no reason to spend more. She didn't do anything. I mean she's played but she didn't learn more than that buys.
Player7: BTW, I have been reading parts of the 2.0 books everyday (spare time, etc), so I believe I can help with introducing people to the new systems, specifically the new werewolf
ST1: When the time comes that will be good, Player7, and you can hurry that along by coaching people on the mortal system. when enough players have mastered it so we're not dragged down nose in books, we can bring in the supers


 

ON COMBAT WHORING, AND THAT IT'S NOT NEARLY AS COOL AS IT SOUNDS:

ST3: Player7: ... Chill the werewolf fixation
ST1: seriously Player7, you're like... obsessed
Player7: It's been my reading material for the last few weeks

ST3: We're going to play World of Darkness: Mortals for a good long while in the meantime
ST1: I'll spring for Penthouse if you STFU about the dogs ;p
Player7: I think it may be the hardest to integrate though, it does have a focus on combat, specifically that the Uratha need to hunt in order to hold up their version of morality... So I'll shut up now about them :P
ST1: well I'm not saying there's no room for combat, It would just be nice if you talked about SOMETHING ELSE once in a while ;p anyway...
Player7: Hey, I'm a combat whore :P
ST1: Player1, is there anything else you want to ask, even if its about a different topic, Since we're here
ST3: You have to obtain your own food and I believe if you read closely, that can be rationalized in many ways that don't make it a five hour combat fest daily.
ST1: and there wont be combat whoring in 2.0. That's one reason I'm looking forward to hitting the giant reset button. that ain't just about the Garou either - some of the kindred were getting on my nerves
Player7: Combat should be a lot more faster in 2.0, so with reducing it's amount in the chronicle coupled with it not being so involving, you shouldn't get mad about it much anymore
ST1: Well what annoys me is people who have characters who don't do anything else but combat. Most warriors are more complex than that. Otherwise you might as well play XBox (this was part of last night's workshop)
Player1: Boooring.
ST1: Also Combat is mostly a Dice thing.
ST3: Player7: A few questions about Darren. What's his favorite song? Favorite color? Last book he read? boxers or briefs? Cans or bottles?
ST1: its not really Role-play, its just a necessary consequence of certain scenes. You know, like telling the Prince to fuck off
ST3: You don't have to answer me, but knowing the answers for yourself is the difference between a character and a set of combat stats
ST1: Kill the Wabbit, Blood red, the AK 47 field stripping guide, boxers, and drinks from the keg
Player7: Favorite song is something I might actually need to discuss with you ooc, Color: Red Last book: Thus Spoke Zarathustra (gave up halfway), Boxers, Either or, he is a survivalist and goes for what he can get at a good price
ST1: Or furclad ;p