Sorry about the late blog this week folks, I've been watching a friend of ours wiener dogs for the weekend and thought today would be a good time to write while they flopped around my feet :3
|Out for walkies!|
This Weeks WildStar Wednesday was about the Wacky Housing contest held during last beta build. You can check out these deranged domiciles here if you wish!
Yesterday Carbine announces that they will be at the New York Comic-Con to show off WildStar a bit more. We're not sure if they will announce anything new here, though I do not think so. But hang in there, good stuff is on it's way. I have a funny feeling we will be seeing much more once they have their new beta build up!
Keep your...well ears posted for the next Nexus Weekly! The Scowling Cassian has been asked to guest alongside Patrician and Ender of WSRP. I am very excited to join the podcast and hope you will all enjoy!
|Stay awhile and listen...|
Though it is always enjoyable to roleplay with your close friends and/or guildies, one of the best parts about roleplaying in MMORPGs is the entirety of the roleplaying community. With the mighty power of social media and the internet you can reach out and connect to hundreds of thousands of people with a few deft strokes on the keyboard!
One of the best ways to bring the community together is through roleplaying events, whether through short sessions lasting a few hours, grand events spanning days or even weeks, recurring events or even spontaneous get-togethers. Though each present their own merits and challenges, they all lend a hand to strengthening the community as a whole. And they can be a lot of fun!
Today I wanted to talk a little about recurring events in roleplaying, some advice on how to find them and/or host them and a few ideas to help inspire. Keep in mind that while these are technically aimed at roleplayers, many of these ideas can be helpful to guild handling in general.
My first real experience with MMORPG events began in World of Warcraft on the server Wyrmrest Accord. While I was leveling my tauren warrior in the starting zone of Mulgore, I saw advertisements in the general chat for an RP “story circle” that was to take place shortly at one of the first town hubs. Curious, I decided to head that way when the time came and see what this was all about.
|A roleplaying group gathered around the Bloodhoof fire (image found here)|
The story circle, hosted then by the Earthspear Tribe (an all Tauren RP guild), was a weekly occurring event that took place for a few hours every Saturday evening. Members of the guild would gather up and advertise around the area while throwing a shout out in their social media connections online for those not in-game at the moment before making their way to a large open area in Bloodhoof village which sported a large bonfire in the center of a clearing. Members of the Horde were all welcome here from any level, race or class. The event itself was partially casual. While they encouraged people to attend in character, they were welcomed to set aside rivalries and other RP complications to just enjoy hanging out with others.
After a brief introduction by the storymaster chosen from the hosting guild, people were encouraged to step up and tell a story, anecdote, poem or really anything of their choosing. The crowds would listen with the occassional comment, laugh or gasp and then clap when the sharing was finished before a new person would rise to speak. There were stories of joy and betrayal, beautiful poems, epic tales of bravery and even a few short plays.
Though I was not a complete stranger to RP in general, I had yet to really experience much in the way of online live RP and I was a bit nervous to begin with. The story circle ended up as a wonderful introduction for me! It was casual enough that I didn’t have to stress out about how perfect my RP skills were or whether or not I was up to date with the ongoing storylines of all present. It was also a good mixture of interaction and relaxation. I didn’t have to be on the spotlight if I didn’t wish, though I was welcome to offer up a story if I wanted to. And afterwards, the hosting guild and many others would mingle around, greeting others and thanking the community for attending their event.
Though it would be a year before I rejoined with the server and eventually joined the Earthspear Tribe, I had already been given an excellent taste of RP to whet my appetite that would lead me through many years of roleplaying with that guild and the subsequent guilds that would branch off, eventually leading to me meeting and falling for my partner...though that is a story for another time.
These events do not just need to be casual storytelling either. In Star Wars: The Old Republic, the guild known as The Legion on the server Ebon Hawk hosted a weekly Monday evening RP event known as “Trooper Night.” Though largely aimed at troopers in general, this event was open to anyone with military skills out for hire. Each night was themed as a coalition of many different military and mercenary teams banding together for a single contract event from rescuing captured personnel to assaulting enemy bases. These were a lot of fun and both the event and the celebrations in the nearby Cantina after a successful mission were great ways to meet new people.
|One of the best parts of Trooper Night was getting a ton of people all lined up into teams to march through the cities. All dressed in our armor, we drew a lot of looks from the community when we passed by. (Image found here)|
Ultimately these events served as a means to bring together the community, to help people meet new friends and to just have fun. They were excellent introductions into RP for some or a fun way to push a character’s storyline for veteran roleplayers as well.
WildStar is an untapped well of creative potential. With a brand new world that blends a bit of Sci-fi and fantasy, exciting new cultures and factions and a whole host of amazing RP tools from specialized mounts to housing, it will be exciting to see what shapes within the RP community. If you are considering being a part of this, or just want to learn a bit more, then read on!
Hosting these events can be a challenge. Much like hosting a pen and paper campaign, you need to work to pull together a group, hold them together and build a storyline or idea for them to play with. Though I haven’t started one on my own, I have helped to promote and lead these events for my guilds and I have a few bits of advice if you are looking to start your own.
Advice for Hosting Recurring RP Events:
Step1: Pick an Idea
-Are you creating a casual story circle or a marketplace bazaar? Perhaps a competition of some sort or a combat mission. Maybe you are offering training or fortune telling to others? There really is no limit to this. Pick something that you think you can carry on through many sessions and that you find fun!
-Every event I have seen has been led through a guild or group of guilds. The time commitment for these can be tough to meet every single time and can be difficult to create, host and manage all by oneself. Find some friends or a guild that shares your views and propose your idea. Maybe a mercenary guild might hold weekly fireside chats, offering sale of goods or contracts while providing a place to share stories of bravery over a few beers. A mechanics group or biker gang might host weekly or monthly races, or perhaps a special forces guild might host military missions on enemy holdings.
-Pick a day and time that works best for yourself and your supporting team/guild, etc. While this can change if need be, it is always best to be consistent. Content aside, a consistent time and day will help others to find your event and will make it a regular occurrence to view around the game zones. Making sure you host it regularly will encourage others to show up regularly and will build the loyalty to your idea that will help keep it going. Failing to keep up with your events may result in a poorer turn out or in no turn out at all.
-Take advantage of social media. Forums, Twitter, guild pages and server sites are all great ways to advertise your events out of game. Within the game, polite advertising (not spamming) in chat channels in your zones or cities help, along with word of mouth to your friends, allied guilds or even just random roleplayers. You do not need to over-extend yourself and waste all your energy just talking about your event, but putting it out there for people to find, or extending the hand of welcome, will help announce your events and can bring in all sorts of people. That is how I first attended the Story Circle in WoW.
Step5; Have Fun!
-I know I sound like a broken record, but I simply cannot repeat this enough. Hosting events like this isn’t for everyone. To establish them as a common server-known event, they take time and dedication. Some will speak more to certain groups of roleplayers than others, some times you won’t have the energy to host for the night and sometimes even the best laid plans can fall through. If you find you just aren’t having fun, or you would rather attend events then host them, then do so. Forcing yourself to create or maintain something you just don’t have the time or energy for won’t be fun. And at the end of the day, this is just a game. Do what is relaxing and fun for you. Maybe instead, try a few single sessions events that just last a few hours rather than a weekly recurrence. You do not have to commit to something longer or harder if you do not wish to.
- Step1: Pick an Idea
- Step2: Support
- Step3: Consistency
- Step4: Promote
- Step5: Have Fun!
These events can be very rewarding to host, but they can also just plain be a lot of fun to attend. They draw in both new and veteran roleplayers and might even pull in those who are simply curious while offering them all a chance to network together and have fun.
I am very excited to see what events and gatherings rise up with the release of WildStar and look forwards to seeing you all out there!