The ‘State of Conflict’ thread brought out an interesting point that really needs to be discussed in its own thread – the State of Roleplay.
My opinion is the overall roleplay of the game has declined significantly over the last two or three years. I would like to discuss the different reasons for this and ways in which we, the players, can do to improve it. I believe that if it improves the quality of the game will do so as well. The conflict thread focused on the different systems in place as well as PvP (with a side order of griefing). To me, these are things that will take a push from the admin side to bring about any real change and given that combat is being overhauled it might be a year or two before our ‘suggestions’ are taken seriously. This thread should focus on things that the community can do to rebalance the game.
Reasons for the Decline –
I feel that a serious drop in quality occurred when the Facebook Lusternia group started. Someone mentioned to me the following point which I agree – ‘At some point in the history of the game, people started to take the game OOC seriously’. In other words, personal attacks against the character equaled personal attacks in real life. I cannot remember the last time I was having an argument with someone where they didn’t feel like I was attacking their real life persona. Everything started getting personal. The FB Lusternia group has become a cancer for the game by destroying the already blurry line between IC/OOC.
Ways to Improve Roleplay–
Knowing the Lore/History – To effectively roleplay your character, I feel you have to have the background knowledge to do so. If you have been playing Lusternia for over a year and still don’t know what Project Cosmic Hope is, you’re in serious trouble. I understand that there will always be people that are competitive and will strictly focus on combat not really care for fleshing out their character. At least know why you are in the said organization and doing the said killing, so that us roleplayers can justify your actions.
Stop making Excuses and take Responsibility – Lusternia has way too many ‘ghost’ leaders – people who either are in position of power and do absolutely nothing or afkers/manse dwellers that spend little time interacting with the community. It is the fault of both the organization for not having people with ‘cajones’ to boot them and the fault of the said player for not wanting to roleplay for whatever reason. Player-driven events can only happen with players that are driven. I hate to say it but Lusternia has none and it’s quite obvious by everyone’s complaints.
Be Creative – My hat goes out to the admin/volunteer that work on not only adding to the game but interacting with the playerbase. There are tons of threads from players showing our love for them. However, it should not be just them doing all the work. It is up to us to contribute to the world through our character’s story. I am dismayed at how much the Public newsboard is not used. Who doesn’t want to be (in)famous? (I’ve never been in an admin-run event but I’ve been in a player one. Much love to @Iytha for putting my character on the map.)
Don’t play/hang out with your friends in-game – If you’re making org/guild decisions for your character based on so-so being your real life friend, you’re not doing the game any favours. It goes back to that blurry line between OOC/IC. The temptation is just too much no matter the age bracket. Meta-gaming falls in this category but who can stop that.
Get into the Mindset – I usually spend about 5-10 minutes after I log in to read some of Aiakon’s works/posts to get into the right frame of mind. I do this to separate my real life self with my in-game character. Also, I do it because it’s a challenge. Some of his concepts are very difficult to grasp and makes me feel stupid. However, I know that if I go through the steps my character will develop. I just wish he was around to help me out with some of my ideas. What do you do to make the shift?
The REAL problem for the decline of Lusternia lies with the players and their attitudes. The conflict systems in place / broken combat are just the icing on the cake. People just stopped roleplaying their characters and started playing their real life personas in the game. And by far the worst thing to have happened is people stopped developing their characters and expected other people (such as the admin) to roleplay for them.
… Or if you think I am wrong, then prove it.