October Check-in

News » October Check-in

Posted on 29 Oct 2018 15:15

Night creatures call
And the dead start to walk in their masquerade
There's no escaping the jaws of the alien this time (they're open wide)
This is the end of your life ~ Thriller, Michael Jackson

Hello there folks! With so much being done this month and the past three it’s been open, we decided to make a monthly announcement/newsletter type thing to inform all of you what has been happening on the server behind the scenes. Because of its length, we decided to keep it on the wiki so we didn’t overload the announcements with a huge multi-message post or just link a google doc. Please take a little time to read it over, I promise it won’t take that long! - Stone

Additional Character Creation Restrictions and Clarifications - All Staff

  • 500 years old maximum with torpor included. This means that, while the starting XP cap is still 100, the oldest a character can be right now is 500 + the age of their death.
  • 2 dots Influence maximum.
  • 3 dots Domain, Status, and Fame maximum.
  • Only common disciplines can be taken with the “Additional Discipline” Merit OR bought with freebies/XP at character creation (Animalism, Auspex, Celerity, Dominate, Presence, Potence, Fortitude, and Obfuscate) and must be well justified in the character’s prelude.
  • Ex-ghouls don’t gain any mechanical benefits, such as having extra disciplines. Ghouls embraced in-character will gain everything but the attribute score increases.
  • 500 word prelude minimum. Well written and creative preludes that are valid for play have the potential to be awarded an extra 5 XP. All players can do this, even retroactively, for each character they have as long as they don’t exceed the 100 XP maximum. It is required it be submitted as a word document, google document, PDF, or some other type of extra file as it won’t fit on the character sheet.
  • Antitribu don’t count when having to buy bloodlines with freebies.
  • Put all information you want canon on the character sheet or in the character’s prelude. Hiding information from Storytellers won’t get you anywhere and may lead to the information that was hidden being voided.
  • Only one sheet can be submitted for approval at a time. Any extras, even NPCs, will be removed until the first character has been played consistently for at least a week. This is so the bloodline rule of two main clan PCs can’t be bypassed immediately as well as to avoid having a single person clog the queue with multiple applications.
  • A directory of Merits and Flaws available for play is currently being worked on and will be released onto the wiki (hopefully) before the end of the year. For now, please only take them from approved source material found on the General Creation page. This also means taking content from older editions and Dark Ages is not permitted.
  • Pathed vampires are unable to use Blush of Life, buy the merit, strive for Golconda, etc. This is because they are considered humanity specific things per RAW, and the character decided to give them up when tossing their “useless” humanity away completely.

These changes will be put on the creation pages within the coming week or two.

Solo Scenes: They aren’t as weird as you think! - Kebabs

A solo scene, or one you write where your character is the only active character can be a great way to expand on their story and grow their personality. Write about the feelings they have after that encounter in the Machine, or how they discover they can grow claws now! Solo scenes let your characters have a little (un)life between scenes with others. Your personal havens are great places for these to take place.

Please be courteous, and don't interrupt an ongoing scene with a wall of text, but solos can take place in public channels as well.

An XP bonus may be awarded for particularly impactful scenes. Please see the wiki for further guidelines!

Location of Roleplay - Stone

Just a friendly reminder to write anything you want considered canon either in the character’s prelude or within the server where Storytellers can monitor it. While minimal interaction within DMs is permitted (such as text messages sent to other characters,) writing entire scenes and or rolling dice in private will not count. If you want to write privately with one other person without the rest of the server witnessing for whatever reason, please ask and we can get you a private channel on the server itself.

PSA on Bleed and Self Inserting - Various Staff

So, this is something that has been happening quite a bit on the server and we the staff really want to address it before more of it pops up:

Stone’s 2 Cents
Everyone places a little bit of themselves into a character, but it’s how we connect to them that makes them something more than a piece of paper with data points. Taking themes from your own personal experience to fuel your character is perfectly fine and encouraged for good, informed writing to take place. The issue is when people do* more *then just give a character a trait or two of themselves. There are quite a few players here who have made themselves into a character sheet and placed them into the game. While it might initially seem like a good idea, not investing all that effort into crafting an alternative persona and how they would think or act, this isn’t healthy behavior and it most always leads to real-life stress and hurt feelings.

Why is this unhealthy? It’s simple. While I play a character, I imagine them as a separate entity. Another individual entirely that is in no way connected to myself that exists in a fictional universe. But when people are playing a self-insert, they might not have the same distinction. Instead they see themselves as a “character” in this story.

But, I should emphasize that no one is immune to bleed. We all need some type of emotional connection to really enhance and give life to our prose, and without it our writing would fall flat. But it’s this connection that, once we get too invested in, we might begin to take things personally. As an example, when Clems was fooling around and claiming he was going to kill Domingo in that fight with Kira, I grew sick because I felt like it was my fault when in reality it was Kira’s.

Example from DaClems’ / DaCreeps’ point of view:
Domingo struggles with Isolation from society, his own religious Faith, and the self-defeating voice that comes along with Guilt, Regret and Depression. These themes are prevalent in my own past, but most importantly to understand is that I have gotten a handle on these issues a long time ago. Now that I am distanced from these troubles, it helps me bring life and realism to a completely fabricated character.

What you don’t want to do is insert Themes you are still going through right now. If it causes you pain right now, do not insert these themes directly into your character. You can explore those ideas in other ways, but you need to separate yourself from your character as much as possible. I am not Domingo. We share different sets of feelings and beliefs. There are no physical similarities, nor are there major similarities in our personalities or values. I am not from Cuba and I have no experience participating in crime or finance. We have entirely different views on dealing with people and handling relationships.

The one concrete similarity is our initials and the type of movies we like to watch. Hopefully this demonstrates the types of things that are dangerous to insert versus the types of things that are 100% benign.

Tips from Kaz: OOC vs IC Actions
While bleed mostly affects how we feel about our characters, it can also affect how we view other players. People rarely bleed because they literally believe they are their characters, and more often do so because they perceive IC actions as a jab at them OOC.
Not all characters will be friendly towards one another, and some will actively work against your character’s goals. It’s all part of roleplaying in a setting full of conflict, and it’s what helps us bring this World of Darkness to life. It’s easy to blame the player behind the character when something doesn’t go to plan, but before assuming they’re using their character as a weapon against you, think back and say, “Does this make sense for their character?” Is it a Ventrue talking down to a neonate? A Sabbat pack member fighting the Camarilla? Don’t assume the worst if context points otherwise.

That being said, we must remember there is a player behind the screen. High stakes RP can be awesome, but it communication is key to ensure all parties are having fun. Not everyone is going to be comfortable exploring certain themes, and making sure everyone is on board before diving in is important. Uneven power dynamics, sexuality and violence are just a few things that should be discussed before they’re brought into the table. Surprises are fun, but even the best horror movies come with a warning on the poster.
Be open and considerate, and remember the Storytellers have your back if someone doesn’t extend this courtesy. We’re on the internet writing about vampires and ghosts- If we aren’t all having fun, then it just isn’t worth it.

As a final note from all the staff, remember that no one is immune to bleed. It can be hard to recognize, but if you believe that it’s becoming a problem for either you or another player, don’t be afraid to read out and say something. At the end of the day we’re a community of nerds pretending to be vampires online, we care about each other so don’t be afraid to talk. We don’t bite hard!

Storytellers: How it All Works - Stone

As everyone has surely noticed, we are very short on Storytellers, which is why the unfortunate backlog of character sheets is unavoidable. Because of this, we always have the application open, which can be found here. Remember that filling out the application doesn’t make you an ST automatically and that we have the right to deny any applications.

FAQ
What do I need to do to become an ST?
Fill out the application and participate in the server. We aren’t going to be giving a checklist for individuals to complete, but it is recommended for applicants to have at least one approved character and have been playing in the server for a month before applying.

What if I haven’t been playing Vampire for that long?
While we would prefer you at least have a couple months experience (so you can comfortably review character sheets), but if you can write adequately, are friendly, and are willing to learn, feel free to fill the application out anyway.

How are applications approved?
The Inner Circle, or administration, deliberate over applications that have been submitted together and vote to see if the specific individual is able to be promoted to such a position.

How will I know if I am selected?
You will receive a message from an Administrator letting you know.

Will I become an ST right away?
If an ST applicant is accepted, they will be given a month trial period as an Assistant Storyteller to see if they are going to be a good fit. This trial period can be lengthened if necessary.

What can an AST do?
Almost everything except final approval of sheets. As long as they ask permission for actions, such as controlling a major NPC or hosting an event, they are able to do so with approval from the Administration.

It’s been a few days, what if I haven’t heard back?
Please be patient, it might take a few days to a few weeks for us to decide if you’re going to be a right fit.

How will I know if my application is denied?
You will also receive a message if your application has been declined.

Can I reapply if my application was denied?
You can, though it is recommended that you wait a few months before doing so.

Ending Thoughts

It’s been a wild month for the server, but we’ve come out stronger than we started. This server is a labor of love, and we can’t wait to keep making it a cool place for you all to roleplay in. We’ll be looking forward to bringing in more improvements and events to keep the ball rolling, and remember-

“Don’t open it.” -Kaz

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