Hidden 24 days ago Post by Aine
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Hello everyone, I noticed some discussion happening in the Latest Status that ended up concerning me so I wanted to ask for more information on it before I decided to jump into roleplaying. I come from a forum roleplay community where it is heavily frowned upon to take other members original characters and place them up for grabs for other members, or turn them into background NPCs. But, there seems to be some conversations happening here that perhaps suggest that those sort of things are seen favorably here? What I would like to know is: are any of the original characters I bring here to roleplay with others going to automatically be up for grabs and allowed for other people to use or turn into NPCs once I step out of that particular roleplay?

Thank you in advance for all information regarding this!
Hidden 24 days ago 24 days ago Post by Kuro
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Kuro nai mono wa nai

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@Aine I believe this is on a case by case basis. If you join a RP with a character and then bail mid-RP, then the GM + players are stuck with a character that is no longer active in the roleplay and they have to figure out how to advance around it. The general consensus is for a GM to write this character out of the story (how this is done depends on the GM and the context of the roleplay itself), IMO. I've honestly never seen a GM just hand off someone's character to another player, but I've seen GMs temporarily NPC them to get them out of the roleplay if, say, their player leaves mid-RP conversation or in a battle or something where they can't easily be thrown into the background.

EDIT: TBH, this all could be solved by said player writing out their character anyway... but generally most people don't even bother doing this, which is why we have this issue.
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Hidden 24 days ago Post by Vampiretwilight
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In my experience, I usually have the character killed off so that it can't be used any further. But that is only my personal experience.

I think some, if not most, prefer their' characters to be killed or written off if they, themselves, are no longer going to be a part of the rp, mainly so that the rp would not end up dying or anything like that.

Again, my personal experience.

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Hidden 24 days ago Post by Aine
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Thank you both for your reply. I understand a lot more of the concept now. The previous forum community I was apart of did not have group threads, so I can definitely see the dilemma of needing to essentially have an inactive character exit the scene. I feel a lot more informed about the discussion, so thank you!
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Hidden 24 days ago 24 days ago Post by VerminS
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VerminS Veteran of the Psychic Wars

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I second @Kuro as a veteran GM.
We had practiced making important player characters into recurring NPCs without killing them off. I also saw in practice passing on the mantle. It is practical for the games that go on for years. I have been a part of one for 5,5 years out of 11 it is going on, and I used to play main villain amongst many others. The way GM tried to write that character off, compared to all the other roles, was hilarious, they simply created characters with same functions on lieutenants roles not to introduce character back on scree so to speak, but used all the groundwork I laid prior to leaving, which is… good! It’s bad that she won’t dare to make cameos with my late main character, not the other way around!
It’s good for the plot and personal stories of other characters to be cohesive even if player on important role leaves. Yes, the plot focus can diverge, but imagine simply deleting several months of development because somebody had a change of heart and stopped playing.

For this exact reason when I make rules for collective play, I set up them as such:
1. You create your original character for this original setting to play it with this exact plot and players setup. Not to play your favorite doll, even if you take all the traits of the characters you have been playing for ages. You give up some of your own personal agenda in exchange for other people creative efforts to entertain you along with themselves
2. You’re welcome to ask for a certain course of action to remove your character from the game in case you leave/disappear when you apply for the role. Any further renegotiations with co-players and GM are based on the goodwill you have.
3. As a GM, I will not let characters of ‘muh OC muh rights’ hog on important roles in the world, nor will I let in some Wristloon Margere archmage with golden hourglass-shaped eyes, nor character of someone’s discontinued wattpad saga into the main cast that has been used under the same name with the same story in Sci-fi and fantasy settings alike for ages. More rights = more obligations. Obligation to be authentic, not cringe-worthy rip-off.

Sounds harsh? Well, see pt 1. Create characters for the world and this exact game, let them belong in the world without your jealousy holding the potential development back, and there will be less drama for everyone.
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Hidden 24 days ago 24 days ago Post by Kassarock
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Kassarock The Conquering King

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I think the above posts adequately address the issue of GMs/other players having to take control of absent player's characters in order to keep the plot going. It's relatively common in long running RPs, is something I have experienced myself from both sides, and I haven't really ever seen it be abused by those stepping in to fill the absent player's shoes.

But there's another facet to this that I think we should all bear in mind when it comes to posting OCs on the internet, which is: None of this Copyrighted, people can and will take your ideas and do with them what they may, don't get upset about it. In that sense, yes, your original characters are up for grabs.

Most often no one is taking 'your' ideas specifically, they're just aiming for similar vibes or have similar influences etc. But it will happen occasionally in ways which are little bit too specific to be coincidences. Case and point, a player I was in an RP with posting a character in another RP that had the same class, appearance and name as my character in the RP I was playing with them. Bit weird, but whatever, we all take inspiration (see: borrow; steal) from various sources, and we're all putting this out there for anyone to read.

Anyway, that's relatively rare in my experience, just though it deserved a mention.
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Hidden 23 days ago 23 days ago Post by BangoSkank
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BangoSkank Halfway Intriguing Halfling

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I don't think I've ever seen someone like take another persons OC and use them themselves in subsequent RPs, at least not without consent and even then very rarely. That would pretty much universally be heavily frowned on. Even making a parody or clear espy of another persons OC would raise many eyebrows.

One way you can help avoid that too is to cut back in your characters influence in an RP if you feel you may not be able to continue.

If there are seven folks in an RP and one guy RPs as squad leader, meaning until he/she posts again no one can continue the RP, if he/she ghosts someone, usually the GM, will have to address that characters absence somehow. So if you're going to have to drop advise the GM or throw up a quick post about why your character is either out of the RP or inactive for some time.

Maybe you get injured and will have to seek mid to long term medical care in the next city. Maybe you get a message from a family member and have to leave to attend to family business. Maybe you just disappear in the dead of the night for reasons that may or may not be explained later.

Hidden 14 days ago Post by Ti
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Ti Ayla Arslan / Lion Cub of Varrahasta

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I am far more familar with tabletop RP in real life and Roll20.

In these settings, which seems similar to the above, your create a character for that story, and you are collaborating in writing that story.

If you remove yourself from that story due to inactivity or similar, it is left to the others to resolve that issue.
Typically the character is written out, such as going to the town, and them deciding they got other buisness elsewhere. Sometimes if the character has been very important, they might turn into an NPC or Cameo role by the GM with a limited role. Usually this is a tribute/honour for this to happen.

In games where there are pre-generated characters, these may end up getting continued. I imagine in this format, this happens significantly less than in Tabletop RP given that there is a lot more creative control.
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