Blood of Dragons

The 'A Song of Ice and Fire' MUSH


Beginner’s Guide: Part 4 - Getting Started Roleplaying

This article covers how to get started roleplaying.

When you are new to MUSHing, the next step is not always an easy one, and it is not uncommon for players to find themselves wondering how to proceed from here. In fact, this is a point where a lot of players end up quitting, because they can’t figure out what to do next. We’d like to encourage all new players to not be hasty to leave once you have been approved. It can take a little while to get started, especially on a smaller MUSH. But if new players give up after logging on just a few times and feeling like they’re not getting anywhere, then smaller MUSHes don’t have much of a chance to grow either.

That said, there are definitely things that can be done to get started more quickly.

First off, don’t worry too much about long-term goals for your character right from the start. If you have done no or little MUSH-style roleplaying before, you will need to get familiar with this first. Of course, you may find after trying it out a few times that its not for you, but at least then you have given it a try. After all, you could end up thinking its a lot of fun. But it takes a little time to see what the rewards with MUSHing are, unlike for example MUDing where you can start right off to advance your character.

So, where do you start? Well, when you log on, use the commands who, +who and +where to see who is on and where they are. The who command also shows how long they have been idle at the moment. That way, you know whether there is anyone around and awake. Once you know that there is someone around (this is not always the case, but do try back later), you can use the Roleplay channel to ask if anyone is roleplaying or wants to start a scene. Use +roleplay <text> to speak on this channel (if you need more help about how to use channels, see +HELP CHAT).

If no one answers right off, or if they say they don’t have time right then, don’t be too discouraged. A lot of times people stay connected to chat with friends but they may not have time to roleplay just then. But the more people that stay around on the game, the more people it will attract, and the more roleplay will be available.

If you do log on and find there is no one available right then, you could take the time to learn a little about what is currently going on ICly on the game. You can do that by reading the Roleplay and Tidings boards: use +skim roleplay and +skim tidings to see the posts, and +read roleplay # +read tidings # to read a specific post. In many cases, your character would know about these events even if you weren’t around as a player when they happened. Remember that your character had a life before you started playing him or her. :)

When you do get involved in a scene, there are a few things you should keep in mind:

1) First, make sure that you have a rough idea where you are starting off with your character. Has he or she already been in King’s Landing or Sunspear for a while? If you picked up a CGed character, he or she was almost certainly already present at either court and should not be played as a new arrival. In this case, your character may also already have met the other characters you end up roleplaying with. You can always ask the other players if you are unsure about this, they will be happy to help you out.

2) If you enter a public room where people already are roleplaying, use the +os command (type +os <text> to use it to speak, and if you need more information see +HELP +OS) to OOCly indicate that you would like to join in. That makes it you, the player, speaking, rather than your character. Most likely, the players already roleplaying will then offer to do a scene set for you, to show what is currently happening. That way, you know if something is going on that your character would react to. If you meet up with someone to start a scene, you can agree between yourself who should do the scene set to start the roleplay off.

3) Once you get started roleplaying, you may find that what you are doing is quite different from what the others are doing. Its definitely fine to have your own style, but keep an eye on how the others are writing their poses to see what the general style of the MUSH is. That’s the best way to learn. The most important tips for a beginner roleplayer is to keep your character in mind, try to think of what he or she would say or do, and make sure that you both try to react to what other players are doing and give them something to react to in turn.

There is much more to the art of roleplaying, but this is not intended as a guide to how to roleplay. Instead, its a guide to how to get your feet wet on a MUSH. Once you have tried roleplaying a few times and decided that you like it, then you can start thinking about where you want to take your character on the game.