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How to Run a Successful Roleplay

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Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:22 pm
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Magestorrow says...

How to Run a Successful Roleplay

Written by @soundofmind, @Featherstone, and @Saen.

1. Have a way for roleplayers to stay connected.
> There's no better way to feed into excitement and energy for posting than talking about the roleplay outside of the roleplay with everyone else. Roleplaying is a social experience, and whether that means creating groups on discord, or keeping out of character talk going back and forth in spoilers between posts, a lot of ideas and creativity can come out of just talking about it. And another plus is you also get to know the people you're writing with and make friends! :)

2. You have to understand the story.
> One of the big reasons that roleplays can fall into an eternal lull of activity is because there is no end goal in mind. In order to keep any kind of story moving forward you need an end in sight. You need conflict - more than just the initial "who are you? and who are you?" moments, you need a story to give your characters a reason to keep doing things, especially with each other or in the same place. Conflict can be something as simple as: we're stuck in a maze, and we need to get out! There can be as many layers and twists and turns as you want, and some of the plot can evolve as you rp with other players/characters! But starting out, you need at least some sort of vague outline to fall back on, so that when character interactions die down, you have something to pull everything forward again. That can mean making a monster appear for them to fight, or introducing a new mystery for them to solve. The possibilities are endless! You just gotta keep feeding the story and encouraging it in the direction of the end you have in mind.

3. You need a reason for your characters to come together.
> Just like you need a reason for your characters to keep interacting to keep the story ball rolling, having a reason that explains why they are there in the first place is especially helpful if you have people throwing in characters from all sorts of stories and all sorts of worlds. It can be science, it can be magic, it can be some sort of common thread. It can be a bad guy who brought them all there, or any number of things - but it's so immeasurably helpful to have a reason for them to be there in the first place to explain how and why they got there outside of their original story and context. It can help clear up confusion and keep the focus on the plot instead of: "WHERE AM I?!? HOW DID I GET HERE?!?!? WHY AM I HERE??!?!?" Because if there aren't any sorts of answers to those questions, those can easily become the story, even if it's not the story you want to tell.
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When we are children we seldom think of the future. This innocence leaves us free to enjoy ourselves as few adults can. The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind.
— Patrick Rothfuss, The Name of the Wind