A beginners guide to RPing (lengthy)

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A beginners guide to RPing (lengthy) Empty A beginners guide to RPing (lengthy)

Post by redwings left wing #11 on Sat Nov 01, 2008 10:38 pm

First of all, I know you're wondering. What is a roleplay? A roleplay is when someone makes a thread, and gives you a topic. Then, you make a character, and post things your character does. It's kind of like writing a story, but with multiple writers.


There are three different levels to roleplaying; Normal, Semi-Elite, and Elite. Here are descriptions of all three:

Normal/Illiterate: The maker of the thread really has no rules, and will accept anyone that wants to join. Chatspeak is allowed.
Example of what they're looking for:
*smiles* hey bob *jumps up &down* wheres sally did she goto the movies?? lol

Semi-Elite/Semi-Literate: Semi-Elite is like a mixture of Elite and Normal. In a Semi-Elite roleplay, chatspeak may be tolerated. Sometimes, there are only a certain number of spots avaliable for you to fill. You are expected to use some type of out of character.
Example of what they're looking for:
Katie saw her friend Bob. She walked up to him. She said "Hi Bob." And smiled. "Wheres Sally? Did she go to the movies?"

Elite/Literate: Here is the roleplay for talented writers. Chatspeak is never allowed/tolerated, and you have to apply, you aren't just in as soon as you post a form. The forms are usually long and detailed, and most of the time a roleplay example is required. Sometimes the makers of these threads will be kind of harsh. You are expected to use some type of out of character.
Example of what they're looking for:
The girl walked through the loud, crowded halls of the school, glancing around for her friend Bob. Finally, she spotted him amongst the crowd. "Hi, Bob," she said, smiling. "Do you know where Sally went? Did she skip and go to the movies AGAIN?"

Types of Roleplays

There are also different 'genres' of roleplay. Here's a list of the most popular ones, sorted for easy reading:

Animal Roleplays:

Warrior Cats: This is a roleplay based on the Warriors series by Erin Hunter. It is probably the most popular roleplay here on WI. In these roleplays, you are a cat who lives in the wild in a Clan and has to survive.
Horse Herds: These are also very popular. More often than not you are wild horses who live somewhere in the wild.
Wolf Packs: In these roleplays, your character is a wolf. You live in the wild, and must survive.

There are also other types of animal roleplays, but those are the most popular.

People Roleplays:

School: This is just what it's called-school. You are a student at a middle/high school. You must deal with gossip, after school activities, ect.
Family: In these roleplays, you are a part of some family. The most popular are roleplays with a man and woman in their second marriage who have exceedingly large amounts of children.
Dear Diary: This is a diary-style roleplay. Instead of roleplaying like you would in a school or family roleplay, you post diary entries for your character.

There are also other types of people roleplays, but those are the most popular.


Put some real thought into this and describe it well.

beautiful blond hair, blue eyes, flawless skin, wears (insert brand here) clothes.
While this does give you some idea, it could be much better and is lacking in way too much detail. How long his her hair? What shade of blue? Isn't your idea of beautiful and flawless different from mine? See? It doesn't work. Plus, writing down cute or beautiful aren't descriptive, seeing as it's opinionated. Stick to factual description. As for animals, it's basically the same. You can say what species it is, but it'd be better to add other features.

Jane was a cairn terrier with brown fur. She had beautiful paws...
...isn't as good as saying that Jane was a cairn terrier with pale brown and curly fur and a darker shade on her back. Her paws were small and clean with small claws that were small, showing that she'd recently had them cut.

Be specific with this as well. DO NOT make the
"perfect" character who's kind, loving, and everyone likes. While there's nothing wrong with a kind, loving character, not everyone is going to like him/her. That's what diversity is. Also, try adding more to the description. Maybe what she likes doing, how she treats others, things like that. Make him/her unique. Everyone has a really kind character, so try to do something different or at least add something to it. Also, things like cute or beautiful, sometimes even innocent, aren't really personality traits.

http://www.springhole.net/quizzes/marysue.htm <- A good way to see if you've made a good character. It takes a while, but it's highly worth it if you're a serious roleplayer.

Staying in Character

It's important to keep your character's personality constant unless the situation really calls for something that could change anyone without outside knowledge.

Name: Steve
Personality: He's shy and timid and hates to try new things. He doesn't take any risks and also discourages them from his friends.

Later as the plot progresses, the leader creates a situation.

The basement cellar was dark and everyone could almost hear something growl. A moth flew out of the door. Steve walked down and looked around. He saw a treasure chest and immediately told his friends to come.

In this example, the leader created a character who'd never go inside that cellar, even if he was paid. However, because the leader wanted him to see the treasure inside, he made Steve go down to the cellar, which is completely out of character for him.


Description, spell check, more than a few seconds of thought, and staying in character. These are the ultimate things to make up a good post in a roleplay.

Show, don't tell:
Like I keep saying, description is important to any good roleplay. Rather than say purple, be more specific. Lavender, violet, dark purple, pale lavender, etc. If they're in a city, describe the people around it or the buildings. It takes longer, but it shows that you have skill. Take the extra time.

Spell Check:
If you look in almost any RPG, I'll guarantee that there will be spelling mistakes or homophones (words with the same pronunciation, but different meanings. Microsoft Word has a spell checker. Type your post in there and then copy and paste it on to the forum. It has a really good spell checkers. Anyway, here are some common homophones and misspellings, just to help. Homophones will be in purple. Spellings will be in green.

All right
Accept (To allow. I will accept two more people. Will you accept my invitation?) Exept (Excluding, apart from. I like all colors except for green. Birds and insects are the only creatures that can fly except for bats.)
A lot
Your (Posession: Your book, your post) You're (You are: You're my friend, you're posting.)


RPGs can be really fun. There are often times where you just want to keep posting over and over and before you know it, there's a whole page of just you and one or two people doing something non-stop (I'm guilty of this one.) Try not to do this. It makes it harder for others to catch up and sometimes you can leave them behind in things that could really involve their character.


Powerplaying and godmoding are strictly prohibited in most elite roleplays. They are simply not tolerated.


If you control the movements, thoughts, or actions of the character around you, it is powerplaying.

Here is an example of powerplaying:
Player 1: Jim paws the ground and quickly turns his gaze away from Jane, hoping that she did not notice him staring.

Player 2: Jane notices Jim's interest anyway and walks forward slowly, moving closer and closer until she has backed him up against the slope of a hill and finally butts him softly in the chest, to where he rolls back wards down the hillside while she laughs playfully.

In the example above, Player 2 has posted something that Jim does, even though Player 1, who is Jim's roleplayer, had no intention of having Jim fall down that hill. Jane's roleplayer, who is Player 2, did not have Player 1's permission to do that to his character. That is powerplaying and is not acceptable!


Godmoding is when you portray your character as an unbeatable, all powerful and almighty being who is flawless in every way possible. They have no weaknesses, they never tire, they always seem to have the will power and strength to beat the enemy in a jiffy, etc...


Sometimes, you can be tempted to give the story a huge plot twist or do something that soley stars or involves your character or just may change the RP as you know it. Ask the author before doing it.

Here's an example:

The current situation is that a family is living in poverty. Player two decides that her character buys a lottery ticket and wins. Suddenly, the family is rich and will probably never have to worry about poverty again. That really changes the RPG and may go in a direction that the leader doesn't want it to. The leader may have wanted the family to stay in poverty and move in with a neighbor.

Roleplay Definitions
Out of Character, or ooc: When you use ooc, you are not roleplaying. You either use parentheses '( )' or 'ooc:' to show that you are not roleplaying.
He finished working and turned the paper in.
((This is ooc!))
Also, when your character is speaking, be sure to use "", and when your character is thinking to him/herself, use

Elite: The highest level of roleplaying. You must apply to be accepted.

Powerplaying: controlling someone else's character

Godmoding: portraying your character as unbeatable, never tires, ect.

Well, that's a guide to roleplaying. Feel free to ask any questions, we'll be glad to answer![i]italics.

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redwings left wing #11
redwings left wing #11

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