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What brings people to roleplay?

KingLlamaKingLlama Member UncommonPosts: 62
I'm working on a pirate game and I am trying to figure out how to approach the lifestyle of the character. What brings you into the characters shoes? The ability to do alot of stuff, Character Creation, freedom, and no story/or story?

Pirate MMO Tattered Sails



  • Azaron_NightbladeAzaron_Nightblade Member EpicPosts: 4,829
    Character creation is a big one for me. On CoH I loved coming up with character concepts and matching them with the right combination of powersets, and of course the right costumes.  B)

    The world's lore is also a big one. If you've got yourself an interesting setting, it can inspire people too.

    My SWTOR referral link for those wanting to give the game a try. (Newbies get a welcome package while returning players get a few account upgrades to help with their preferred status.)

  • Po_ggPo_gg Member EpicPosts: 5,749
    edited November 2015
    In CO you have even wider options than the Powerset system, with Freeform :wink:

    Personally I'd put the lore in the first place, and "off-time" mechanics onto the close second. My two favourite games to roleplay (not counting NWN) are TSW and LotRO, both has a great lore, emotes, tons of costumes (but to be honest, for creating your very own character "by the looks", nothing comes near to CO), and additional mechanics - in LotRO the music system, in TSW the text adventures and the Albion (and for dance / dj shows the Crusade)

    edit: not to forget, you need a community who utilise those systems, and likes to roleplay. Seems it helps a lot if you have a smaller, tight-knit community with friendly and mature players :wink: 
  • waynejr2waynejr2 Member EpicPosts: 7,768
    It starts with character creation.  CoX had a place where you could write a character background.  IN pen and paper rpgs many role players would write up detailed character backgrounds and histories.  These would be used DMs to add value to the campaign.   Something like that where characters could go through menus to select choices that affect the game later on would be cool.  

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  • KingLlamaKingLlama Member UncommonPosts: 62
    So lore and character creation? I'm using unity engine.

    Pirate MMO Tattered Sails

  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 41,536
    Opportunities to socialize, like Bree tavern when Lotro 1st went live and the music....great rp opportunities then

    "True friends stab you in the front." | Oscar Wilde 

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    Just trying to live long enough to play a new, released MMORPG, playing New Worlds atm

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  • AdelardtheVersedAdelardtheVersed Member UncommonPosts: 7
    In a game, I am especially enchanted by game mechanics that encourage roleplaying. For instance, LOTRO had a massive amount of emotes, including a separate text feature ./e that would produce grey text that easily distinguishes roleplayers, a cosmetic wardrobe, and other facets. Obviously the hallmark of a roleplayer is the ability to utilize one's imagination in spite of the senses, but seeing something tangible in front of you only adds to the depth of the experience.
  • elfdragon21elfdragon21 Member UncommonPosts: 46
    Roleplaying is so rare anymore. Several new games don't even have roleplaying servers anymore. Even when I played on roleplaying servers, most people didn't roleplay. It was rare when I found someone who was roleplaying.
  • SoupiestSoupiest Member CommonPosts: 2
    edited January 2016
    @elfdragon21 ;

    There's some games out there like SA-MP whom contribute to roleplaying.
  • GrayPhilosopherGrayPhilosopher Member UncommonPosts: 78
    I'd say your ability to interact with the world is a big factor too. If the only way to interact with other players (or NPC's for that matter) is through text emotes, things quickly fall flat. But if you're able to attack, capture or otherwise interact with people (with appropriate consequences of course), you suddenly have a system in which players can create their own player dynamics.
    RP and stories can flourish because you're able to create real tension and conflict within the game world.
  • MaquiameMaquiame Member UncommonPosts: 1,073
    Roleplaying is so rare anymore. Several new games don't even have roleplaying servers anymore. Even when I played on roleplaying servers, most people didn't roleplay. It was rare when I found someone who was roleplaying.
    You have to find the communities, then you'll see where they are in game. Most of them are on Enjin


    Any mmo worth its salt should be like a good prostitute when it comes to its game world- One hell of a faker, and a damn good shaker!

  • scorpex-xscorpex-x Member RarePosts: 1,030
    Roleplay is incredibly rare, every single roleplay mmo server I've been on was dominated by erp.

    If not for erp there wouldn't be enough people on any rp server for it to sustain itself.
  • Righteous_RockRighteous_Rock Member RarePosts: 1,234
  • Octagon7711Octagon7711 Member LegendaryPosts: 9,000
    Character creation.  Some people take hours trying to get their character to look just right.  The ability to change your characters looks during game play is a plus.   I like a good story line during questing with the option to go off the beaten path if I want which means the ability to explore high level areas with low level characters, yes I die a lot but it's a fun challenge especially if there's a good reward for doing it.  For example the reward in ESO was taking a level 10 character to a level 35 zone to do the vampire quest, that way you could return to the regular zone and level your vamp skills early and roleplay a vamp sooner.

    "We all do the best we can based on life experience, point of view, and our ability to believe in ourselves." - Naropa      "We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are."  SR Covey

  • larryp11233larryp11233 Member UncommonPosts: 97
    Roleplaying is so rare anymore. Several new games don't even have roleplaying servers anymore. Even when I played on roleplaying servers, most people didn't roleplay. It was rare when I found someone who was roleplaying.
    I agree
  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Member LegendaryPosts: 9,772
    When ever I make a new char, I always write a back story. Even if it's just a few paragraphs. I will pick paths in questing with that back story in mind. Once you do that it's easy to rp that character and the rest of the story writes it self. 
  • BluelinerBlueliner Member UncommonPosts: 158

    apparently nothing does anymore, every game I ever tried to RP in is now void of anything like RP. and the new games don't even try to create living worlds anymore

  • filmoretfilmoret Member EpicPosts: 4,906
    SWTOR did it best.  Flashpoints give a good example of roleplaying during a dungeon.  But if you don't enforce it then don't think it will happen.  I've heard a lot of good things about Secret World too.  But outside of those settings RP is very rare and hard to find in any mmo.  I know things like character customization and emotes help with roleplaying.  But how many games you been a part of with tons of emotes and excellent customization and where is the roleplaying?  So those things really don't help at all.  You need multiple character quests where they are required to answer questions ect ect...  If you want then you can actually have a roleplay enforced server where there are no channels or whispers.  Definately want chat bubbles above the heads or that kinda ruins it too.  I'd say go into a game and try to roleplay with random players.  You will find that certain settings might work and certain things never work.
    Are you onto something or just on something?
  • filmoretfilmoret Member EpicPosts: 4,906
    You can also design a world that doesn't evolve around numbers.  Instead of armor rating of 100 you make it excellent armor.  Good armor, poor armor, bad armor....  So when players are talking they sound like they are at least in the game world.  hey where do i get armor to help me move faster that is excellent?  Where do i get the strong mace that destroys heavy armor?  So the shirt will have a movement rating for freedom of movement and a protection rating.  Your character's strength will be good and not 50.
    Are you onto something or just on something?
  • LawlmonsterLawlmonster Member UncommonPosts: 1,085
    edited May 2016
    You can RP anywhere with just about anything, it really doesn't take much aside from being able to create a character, share stories, and interact with other RP'ers. World of Warcraft has one of the biggest and most active RP communities I've ever seen, with several hundreds of players on just one of their RP designated servers (Wyrmrest Accord) and another several hundred more spread across the others. Someone might look at the mechanics of WoW and think it wasn't built for this sort of activity, and they'd be absolutely right. It isn't designed with roleplayers in mind, hardly any modern MMO is, and yet it's thriving there. Why?

    They have a community. The only thing you need to RP is another person you can write with, that's the bottom line. The mechanics are needless when you consider that RP can exist in text environments, or pen and paper, with absolutely no rules at all aside from what the players individually agree upon between one another. There are tools that make this easier in virtual environments, such as that you can identify other RP'ers and the traits of the characters they've written, physical attributes or histories, and a system to organize yourselves. Guilds are a great social tool for finding like minded individuals and planning stories together, which requires very little effort to develop.

    But if you're looking to mechanically build a game for roleplayers from the ground up, you need to be focused on details that encourage players to interact. Character customizations and profiles, wide varieties of skills or attributes to define them, lore and a world for them to exist in that inspires them to write together, the ability to do mundane things like sit in chairs or pen books and letters, property ownership, crafting that makes them rely upon one another, systems in place for DM's or GM's to drive the universal narrative. Ultima Online is a great game to look at for examples of this. Project Zomboid, while not an MMO but a server based multi-player game, has a more modern design with many of the same influences.

    TL;DR: It's a difficult and niche audience to create games for, because you want your players to be able to do anything they can imagine their characters doing, which is practically impossible to provide mechanically. There's a reason why so many people still RP through text alone, and that's because your imagination is limitless while video games have boundaries. The best advice I can give would be to focus on tools that help build your community first and foremost, and focus your design philosophy around encouraging players to interact with one another.

    "This is life! We suffer and slave and expire. That's it!" -Bernard Black (Dylan Moran)

  • StelawratStelawrat Member UncommonPosts: 7
    For those of you who are looking for a strictly role player experience, I think that PlaneShift would interest you: 

    It was my first role player experience & I couldn't believe that here was this game world full of people who stayed in character, which I didn't even really know what that meant at the time... (: 

    Because the community is so friendly & as I remember, there was a special tab or way to whisper another player for help if need be, I did do that sometimes & whenever I did, I was always replied to with patience & / or humour, good people... But this left me feeling kind of guilty because I knew that I was breaking their immersive game experience.

    No one takes your hand, guides you, or restricts you. You wander around in this great, unique world, discovering so many things on your own, including pvp in what seemed to me, to be like the bowels of the earth. :anguished:  Single player pvp only I think, you can observe the fight without getting involved. 

    I was so shy & so taken aback by the "in character" rule set, that I left & moved onto "just the regular type mmorpg"... :(  

    I just now checked & it seems to be just as it was years ago, ftp, regularly updated, forum populated by a close knit community still so, I think still a really interesting game to try out & now that I'm much older, /cries a little bit, not so shy, still have the client in this beat up old laptop of mine, running Win XP... 

    might have to check it out again, even if I'm still not so good at role playing, I'd love to wander around that game world again, updates & all. :pleased:  


  • GodOfGame87VNGodOfGame87VN Member UncommonPosts: 4
    I love the way we build up our characters and the huge virtual worlds in MMORPG. I remember back to 2005 when i play Mu Online - my first MMORPG - with my friends. It's funny and now we can't forget. MMORPGs are fun.

    23ZDO - Best Online Card Game | Tam Quốc Xèng - Tỉ phú VCOIN

  • H0urg1assH0urg1ass Member EpicPosts: 2,380
    The two things you're going to have to nail if you want people to actually role play are:

    A character creation system like no other.  People who role play will also want to be able to have control over every little detail of their character from height and weight to cheekbone length.  Not just character physical customization either.  The costumes need to be extremely well done and varied enough that 20 people can sit around role playing in a room and none of them will look alike unless they want to.

    The other half of the equation is the social aspect.  You will need chat bubbles that support some kind of emotional context like maybe emoji.  You will need a vast array of emotes which can convey just about any action or reaction that people would commonly use in a social situation and some which are absurd.  I'm warning right now, though, that if you put a "fart" emote in the game, then you might as well trash the rest of them.  Steer clear of anything crude, or it's all that some people will use.

    In Age of Conan, for instance, people would find groups of role players and then bring all of their friends and constantly use the fart and pissing emote on them until they got tired of their shit and left.  It got so bad that they actually removed the pissing emote entirely.
  • BarbieBoyBarbieBoy Member UncommonPosts: 85
    The freedom to do whatever you want. Roleplay also lessens my "wildest of wild imaginations"  too as I'm able to express myself more freely with a fictional character where nobody would probably seems to care about anyway. It lightens up my load but saddening nonetheless. I join roleplays in Starbound in case someone asked. 
  • SaunZSaunZ Member UncommonPosts: 472

    Obviously the main thing that will bring peepz to a Pirate RPG is being able to say, "aaarrrrrggggggg matey"

    Sz  :)
  • filmoretfilmoret Member EpicPosts: 4,906
    Maybe if you give them a role they might play it.  Enforced roleplaying is the only game that I ever saw it work.
    Are you onto something or just on something?
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