View Full Version : RP For Newbies: Fleshing Out a Character

July 14th, 2010, 12:42 PM
Once you have a good idea of who your character is (i.e. a history) and helped others to see what they look like (i.e. a description), you can further develop your character's personality through use of emotes and socials. If you use a program such as ZMUD, you have access to macros and triggers and all manner of tools. Use them!

Look through the whole SOCIALS list - there are some fun ones there! (And yes, in the past, Tynian has allowed folks to create and submit suggestions for socials, if you come up with a good idea.) A lot of them get overlooked. Socials are a quick, easy means of bringing a character to life.

Emotes are one of your most powerful RP tools. Some ideas...

- create mannerisms for your character. For example, whenever Cordir was uncertain about a situation, or feeling awkward or shy, she would "em scuffs her foot along the ground." or "em reaches up to twirl a lock of hair around one finger." Think about the mannerisms you have in RL -- everyone has those nervous habits -- and bring some to life in your character. I have been identified by mortals - while invisible to them - more times than I can count, simply because of my well known mannerisms. [Remember, these can be programmed in as macros or one-touch keys or triggers - don't type them each time!]

- Think about how you communicate. When you are speaking with someone in RL, it's not simply vocal communication. Combining emotes with speaking really helps to bring a conversation alive. For example:

Without Emotes or socials:
Jane says (in common), 'I..um.. kinda like you.'

SOCIAL: blush
EMOTE: em glances over, her eyes not meeting yours.
say I.. um.. kinda like you...'
emote: em looks away, her fingers twisting a handkerchief nervously, awaiting your response.

That's not to say that you need to emote or social every single time you talk to someone... but it's certainly something you can sprinkle in - like seasoning when cooking - to add more flavor.

- Use emote to convey action and emotion AND the spoken word. Nothing says it just has to be one or the other. If you are conveying speech, don't forget quotation marks. Examples:

EMOTE lightly traces the line of her lover's cheekbone and throat, murmuring, 'I missed you, dear one.'

EMOTE growls angrily, 'You will pay for that!' then turns sharply on his heel and departs.

EMOTE whispers softly, 'Why?' The anguish clear in her voice.

- Use emotes to make your spells more interesting. Some folks set up one set of macros for combat situations, and another set for role-play situations. Some examples:

EMOTE: em raises his hand, making a gesture of benediction and blessing, and whispers a prayer to his god.
CAST: C 'bless' Joesmith

- While it may sound strange, stay in character and use those emotes even when you don't see anyone. a) There may be people who are invisible or hidden present, and b) Thieves have info. :) If you maintain character even when you aren't interacting... believe me - folks notice!

Equipment: While it may sound odd, a simple change of clothes and or accessories can really bring your character to life. If you're going to be in the guild or temples for a while - consider changing out of the clothes you wear when you're chasing down mobs, and into something different. This can be as simple as just one or two clothing items, or as elaborate as a full set. It's also nice to have a change of clothes for special events - ceremonies, weddings, etc. Just don't forget to change back before heading out for exp or pvp. For some examples, take a look at a log of the attendees of Cordir's wedding to Deamhan, on the TFC Timeline: http://finalchallenge.net/tfc/community/timeline/1999/lookdesc.htm

So there's some ideas - play with them, see what works for you. It may feel weird at first.. but give it a try! One thing about RP -- it can often be contagious. :)


July 15th, 2010, 07:26 AM
Here are some examples of Faile's mannerisms past and new and some that are race specific:

Faile clicks her talons together signaling she is ready.
Faile chirps happily.
Faile shudders and feathers fly out everywhere.
Faile grins mischievously.
Faile expands her wings, uh oh don’t make her mad.
Faile looks at you inquisitively.

Hope it helps!

July 15th, 2010, 08:44 AM
More thoughts:

- collect cool props: non magical, non-limited items that are fun. If you're playing a "ladies man" - gather up flowers (they're sold in several shops, including the Midgaard Graveyard) to give to ladies. There are a LOT of objects on the mud that can be used for fun RP -- dice for gaming, neat drinking containers, walking sticks, etc. As a mortal, Cordir was tasked with cleaning the office of one of the Implementors, Madman. To help with this task, she was given a number of objects - a trash can, a feather duster, a ladder (all existing items from the mud) as well as an outfit to wear ... which leads me to...

- Talk to your immortal about restrings; ask for a quest to earn the privilege of receiving one (Immortals only get a certain number of restring credits). Restrings can add a huge amount to your role play - whether it's a wedding ring, a special object from your past, or a French Maid's Outfit. ;)

- Even the food that you eat can add to your RP. (but also be aware, that it can be a clue to a skilled/observant PK'er as to where you like to spend time in shops.)

- Think about phobias or obsessive little things to add to your character. That can be as simple as being afraid of ghosts, hating cheese, coveting chocolate, etc...

- Speech mannerisms can be a lot of fun, but they're also very easy to overdo. Even a decade after he left the mud, if you mention the name Keller to some of the old timers, they'll groan. He always spoke in an 'old English' style of speaking - it was perfectly suited to his RP, but got irritating for some.

February 10th, 2011, 07:37 AM
I just wanted to bump this post a bit. This week, I've gotten to enjoy a pair of RP scenes, last night especially, and in reading through some of the logs I've been posting on the wiki - you HAVE been visiting the wiki, right? - it has me buzzing from an RP high. :)

If you aren't sure how to get started... get ahold of me on mud. I'm happy to mentor or help with the creation of storylines for individuals or even whole followings. Mud-wide RP quests, Bardic Circles, etc.

I'm also happy to host an Office Hour - in which my office would be open at a specific scheduled time for folks to gather. What I do NOT want to do, is have gatherings in the Guild. Get out in to the world, and make it a part of your RP.

RP doesn't have to be big, complicated, or scary.

It can be a single glance.
A world of information can be included in just a bow or curtsey.

Give it a try. Your first taste is free. Believe me; you'll be hooked.


February 14th, 2011, 04:07 PM
As a bard, I think I'll be making use of emotes with spells or abilities that I learn, as well as just being around. Generally, the raised eyebrow, bow, nod, or shake of the head is about as far as I tend to go. And I should probably work on that. Which reminds me, I need to work on my description.

February 23rd, 2011, 02:25 PM
Some other things you might want to do -- come up with a 'custom' emote...an emote that is similar to an existing social but has your own quirk to it. Instead of using the 'raise' social, I use an emote that's macro'd to the "/" key on my keyboard: Cordir raises an eyebrow inquisitively.

Something that I did for members of the Chosen of Fate was to set up pray triggers for them, to create environment rechos. For example:
Nyx prays 'enter'
Triggers the alias, 'nyxenter'
which issues the following commands:
at nyx recho The shadows seem to swirl and deepen at the corners of your vision.;
at nyx recho Within the gloom, a glittering appears, like moonlight on spiderwebs.;
at nyx recho A midnight sprite glides out of the glittering darkness, and pauses, hovering.;
at nyx recho The ebon shadows shiver for a moment, and a thin, dark-clad figure emerges.;

*IF* I can figure out how to make them work in CMUD, and *IF* they are appropriate and not all wacky... I am willing to consider requests from folks to set up RP rechos, subject to my own whims . (Translation: If you're wanting something dorky, no. If you're wanting something to actually enhance RP and have fun with, let's talk.) Of course, they'd only be available when I was online, and visible.

February 23rd, 2011, 03:34 PM
That would be a lot of fun, Cordir, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who would appreciate it!

March 15th, 2011, 08:06 AM
I *THINK* with Gwyrdain's help (Thank you, Gwyrdain!!), I've got some of this sort of thing working. If anyone wants to work with me on building some 'tell triggers' for RP, please let me know!

November 15th, 2011, 07:46 AM
I wanted to reiterate my offer to create custom, tell-triggered room echos for RP. I've built a couple for Vale and Wish, and had a great deal of fun doing so. Katrana has one, too, that's _extra_ magicky, which creates her Hound, Manatheran.

I'm also planning on holding an Office Hour this Friday evening, at 7PM CST - that's Central Standard Time, NOT Mud time. I'm happy to provide transport to my office to anyone who is less than level 20. Everyone who attends will receive a small token of my appreciation for taking the time to participate.

November 18th, 2011, 08:55 PM
I am sorry I missed it! I hope you will extend the invitation again. :)

November 19th, 2011, 12:09 AM
INK now has an RP trigger!
If a Swarf can have one, so can you! :)