On Being a Good RolePlaying Partner

What kinds of things do people look for in an RP Partner? A partnership by its very nature is an association of two or more people who cooperate together on a project. One of the strengths of such an endeavor is for the parties to be able to 'meet in the middle'. 'Performers' are fine, as far as they go, but what really draws people is the ability to add to the scene, to write a believable story and to create characters - characters that you love, or characters that you love to hate!

Reliability: Nobody wants a partner that either won't hold up their end of the story or that vanishes into thin air! Playing regularly during the week is a definite plus, but often some great story-telling goes on in e-mail exchanges.

Get involved! Just pulling up a chair and entering a room/scene isn't really enough. To really enjoy yourself and make a real roleplaying game of it you must actively try to involve yourself whenever you can. Don't just sit there and wait for someone to notice you and invite you to participate.

While plotting out adventures ahead of time is a fine talent, a good RP partner also has the ability to literally fly by the seat of their pants. Scenes in RP are fluid: Everyone loves a partner that can adust to the situation and take a new direction on the spur of the moment without losing their composure - and humor (whether In Character or Out Of Character) is always a lifesaver.

Respect: What it boils down to is simple, common courtesy. Be polite! Treat others the way you would like to be treated! The most obvious thing to say - but one that is often forgotten: You play the game to have fun, and the other players are here for the same reason. If for any reason you are not having fun playing, then try to pinpoint the problem and do something about it! If the reason cannot be resolved, then you should stop playing. There is no point in doing something you are not enjoying.

Here's what some of our forum members look for:

  • "The ability to write a story and create characters that really drag me in. I love working with a person who can surprise me. If I find myself wondering long after I've signed offline what makes a character tick or what they might be doing next, that's great."
  • "An open willingness to let new players in on the RP if they fit into the setting or story, be they a 5-year veteran of the forum or a 2 day old Newbie who just got done writing up their character concept."
  • "Someone who stretches your horizons. As a person who tends to think from a character's point of view first and on a smaller scale, it's been great to work with people as of late who can think on a world-wide scale. Where I might have hesitated, they say "Why not?" and then they make things happen. It's also been a positive experience to work with someone who isn't afraid to question my characters and ideas. "What does she think, why would she do this?" A good question can lead to all kinds of ideas."
  • "Some of the best people I have ever had as RPing partners have the ability to compromise and to make fun stories. I love a person who is passionate, humorous, highly creative and can free-form on the fly."

Where'd They Go??

Sometimes people leave the forum. It's sad, but true. Stuff happens! Whatever the reason (barring emergencies, and we want to stress that Real Life holds the highest priority!), if you choose to play in the forum, you assume a certain moral obligation to the other players. Simply put, it's bad form to leave folks in the lurch.

There are two basic scenarios. The first is fairly straight-forward, while the second puts the onus of responsibility squarely on the shoulders of the party leaving the forum:

Setting Characters

These are characters which have been created by Lyran Tal Press, and can include heads of government from various regions and leaders of organizations, heroes and villains alike. From time to time, LTP offers these characters to players to 'run' with and write for. The characters usually come with a background, a profile, and often an entire story. They may be played however the individual player given stewardship deems appropriate, as long as it embraces the spirit of role-playing and conforms to the setting structure as laid out within the Lyran Tal website.

The player does not own the character, however, nor do they have the right to copyright the work based on these characters. Copyright of Setting Characters belongs exclusively to Lyran Tal Press.

In the event that a player takes on the role of a Setting Character, then leaves the forum, that character (if the player left him/her alive upon his departure) still continues to exist. Another player will be asked to take over that character because he/she is crucial to running storylines.

Original Characters

The characters that you create to play or write for in the world of Lyran Tal are yours to do with as you see fit. If one's original character (as opposed to a Setting Character) holds a prominent position in the structure of Lyran Tal, the player holds the responsibility of creating a history for that character, as well as for the area the character 'rules.' The player has a responsibility to that area, in whatever decisions they make, whether in- or out-of-character. This also includes the responsibilities to the group of players that have become involved in any running storylines that include the character/player in question.

Should the player leave the forum, it is their responsibility to make arrangements for that character to properly exit the political world of Lyran Tal.

Prominent or not, if a character is suddenly no longer a part of the scenery, they run the risk of becoming the subject of wild rumor and conjecture. They may be assumed dead, captured, married, insane, on adventure, enslaved, ensorcelled... You get the picture. While your characters and stories are your own, remember that once they have been played out or posted, they become a part of the rich tapestry of events and history that make up Lyran Tal and will remain so. Should you choose to leave the forum one day, no one can claim ownership of your stories or characters, but reference may be made to them; it won't be as if the characters never existed, or the events you wrote about never took place.