Even though—in fact, especially as—the game is meant to focus on politics, and thus a lot of IC antagonism between characters is to be expected, the Admin feel that an environment where players get along OOCly is of paramount importance. Of course, this can be difficult to achieve, as players approach to and opinions on various aspects of roleplaying can be quite disparate. These etiquette rules and guidelines are intended to facilitate player interactions by making it clear what kind of roleplay and, by extension, what kind of environment we are aiming for.
This is also discussed in the file detailing our consent policy, but we feel it is also a point of etiquette and important enough to repeat here as well. We strongly encourage players to communicate OOCly, both in order to avoid problematic situations and in order to work out any problems that do arise. On other games players may be encouraged to primarily solve any IC issues entirely ICly, but we feel that this style of play gives too great an advantage to very assertive players. Furthermore, if a conflict arises that players cannot work out on their own, we encourage players to ask Staff to mediate.
This is in many ways closely related to the issue of OOC communication. While ICly cutthroat politics are perfectly appropriate for the setting, we do not want to see cutthroat interactions with other players, we want to see consideration and co-operation.
Don’t just assume that your character would have seen or heard something if it is not fairly clear-cut. Instead, please ask. If the other player is unreasonable about the situation, please ask Staff to mediate or decide. Similarly, if you want to spin off on the actions described in someone else’s pose, make sure that what you decide to do fits the information given and do not invent new details without first asking the other player. Its impossible to beheaded by a blunt sword, for example. And if an IC action or statement is misunderstood, for example due to an OOC mistake in a pose, players have every right to redo their pose or explain themselves. You are not expected to just “roll with it” if that is not something you are comfortable with.
Perhaps the most important facet of roleplay etiquette is the use and misuse of OOC information. While we do not encourage a complete separation between IC and OOC in the sense that IC information should never be shared at all OOCly, it is still very important that players do not use OOCly obtained information against each other.
If player A asks player B if her character would know about such and such a thing and player B says yes, that is perfectly acceptable. No scene has to be roleplayed out with player A’s character obtaining the information.
On the other hand, if player A OOCly learns about something that was said between player B’s and player C’s characters, and player A’s character shows up to take advantage of this in roleplay, this would be a highly inappropriate move. Player A should first have asked player B and player C whether her character would be aware of what was said.
While everything said or done in a public area of the MUSH technically could be overheard or seen by someone, that doesn’t necessarily translate to it being reasonable for a particular player to overhear or see something just because they happened to be in the same room at the time. On the other hand, players should not try to unreasonably claim that their actions or words in a public area could not be seen or overheard.
For example, lets say player A enters a scene where player B and player C are already roleplaying. Player A should not pose anything regarding what Player B or Player C are doing until player A has either been provided with a sceneset or been told OOCly what the scene is like. Many of our rooms represent a fairly large expanse of space, and this virtual space needs to be taken into consideration when a player determines whether her character can see, hear or interact with other characters. If Player A makes an assumption which doesn’t fit the IC scene, player A should be prepared to change her pose. Expecting the other players to go with the flow is not reasonable.
However, it is also important that any players already active in a scene use the tools we have provided on the game to make it easy for a new player to understand what the scene is like. +Groups (see +HELP +GROUPS) can be used to create virtual locations in a room, and since these are displayed when someone does a look in a room, they’re a very effective way of showing where in the room you are. And if you are speaking quietly, use +gt (see +HELP +GROUPS) or +whisper (+HELP +WHISPER) to simulate this.
If another player overhears something said in a room, they do have the right to, within reason (it would not, for example, be reasonable to act as if you overheard quiet conversations in several different parts of the room), assume that they heard what was said, even if you posed speaking quietly. They are, however, very much encouraged to ask first, to ensure that they have the correct understanding of the logistics of the scene.