Tuesday, September 29, 2009

RP Classifications for MUDs

In an earlier article I've defined what roleplaying (RP) actually is. Understanding what roleplaying is is key to understanding all the different game classifications. Roleplaying is adopting the role of a character. Roleplay classifications determine how much a player needs to stay "in character" while they play.

Non-Roleplaying game

If a game is listed as non-roleplaying then they do not wish their players to roleplay at all. Being in character or adopting a role is not wanted on the game. Most of the time players speak very openly about the game and its mechanics in speech, over channels, and via tells. Talking about the "real world" is not normally restricted as well. Anyone who tried to roleplay on one of these games could likely be ridiculed by the player base, so it is good to know what type of game you are on!

Role-playing Accepted
Roleplaying is accepted on these games but not really expected in any way. But if a player choses to develop a character a bit and RP being someone in the role that their character is it wouldn't be discouraged. In an RP accepted game pretty much any playing style is accepted. Players can interact with the game and play as they wish.

Roleplaying Encouraged

If a game is classified as RP encouraged then the game designers want players to RP and adopt special roles for their character. Encouraged means that RP is not strictly enforced. There are more restrictions to how players communicate with each other and likely distinctions between modes of out of character (OOC) and in character (IC) communication. But some players may chose not to spend much time developing their characters or acting out a personality that is different from their own.

RP Enforced or Mandatory
On a game that is RP enforced or RP mandatory it is expected and required to roleplay. Not only is it expected the staff (and sometimes players) will take measures to make sure the rules surrounding acceptable communication and game behavior are followed. The game will also be designed to facilitate roleplay. It is important to learn the rules on such games so that the integrity of the game world is maintained. Players are encouraged to immerse themselves into the unique game world through their game play.

Understanding the difference between different types of games will help you find the game environment you will particularly enjoy.

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