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Verisimilitude: Roleplaying or just, "I do what I want!"

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Community Content > Roleplaying
Verisimilitude: Roleplaying or just, "I do what I want!"

ProfessorWalsh's Avatar


ProfessorWalsh
02.14.2012 , 08:36 AM | #21
Quote: Originally Posted by Sendra View Post
Bad behavior in RP gives a lot of room for interaction and character development. Even "IC consequences" represent more RP, and more RP is always the goal - right?
The IC consequence for what those Padwans were doing would not have been liked by that player. The kind of action she was engaging in would have been met with, by canon and lore, the following ruling:

"You and (the other Padawan) are never to see, or interact with each other again."
"There is no room for compromise. We walk the path of the light side, or we fall into darkness. There is no gray area, Ben."
~ Jedi Grand Master Luke Skywalker (P. 187 FotJ, Book II: Omen)
Host of the Jedi Council stream also author of From the Journal of Val Starwind

Sendra's Avatar


Sendra
02.14.2012 , 09:04 AM | #22
Quote: Originally Posted by ProfessorWalsh View Post
The IC consequence for what those Padwans were doing would not have been liked by that player. The kind of action she was engaging in would have been met with, by canon and lore, the following ruling:

"You and (the other Padawan) are never to see, or interact with each other again."
Here's where you and I probably differ then.

I don't consider that ANY player-character has the authority to speak or act on behalf of the Jedi Council.

This may be what you believe the Jedi Council would do. But for some strange reason - that you are not privy to - they don't. Those padawans are NOT censured by the Council, not punished by the council in any way.

This leaves you in the awkward position of insisting they are and will - and being wrong. The IC consequence to you (as someone who cares about IC consequence) is now far greater than any IC consequence to them - a situation that can be very awkward.

The solution is to RP only what is within your control to RP. You cannot RP the masters of those padawans. You cannot RP the Jedi Council. What you can do, if it is part of your RP already, is RP being another Jedi responsible and concerned about the strength of the Jedi Order. You can reprimand the padawans. You can try to find the identity of the master(s) responsible for their training. You can say that you're reporting it to the Council. You could even RP representing a hardline fringe group within the Jedi Order that takes matters into their own hands when the politicians and bureaucrats of the Council seem to not care. But you cannot speak or act directly for the Council.

CosmicKat's Avatar


CosmicKat
02.14.2012 , 11:15 AM | #23
The Jedi are quite a cartoonish and unrealisticly 'upright' organization heavily inspired by Arthurian (and countless other fantasy-based) legend. That sort of fiction only works when it applies to a very small group of people. It is plausible that a dozen knights can live by that code, but in a game world where planets have trillions of people, that plausibility disappears.

For example, Obi-Wan was an old guy in a cloak who fought like an old guy in a cloak, played by an actor 'phoning it in'. Yet despite that, his 'supernatural' abilities were believable within the setting. You put hundreds of Obi-Wans up against thousands of laser firing droids and the sillyness of it explodes the plausibilty and you end up with nothing more than "cool CGI".

In other words, taking the Jedi overly seriously and "by the book" is implausible and does the fiction (RP) more harm than good.

HiroAyami's Avatar


HiroAyami
02.14.2012 , 11:21 AM | #24
Quote: Originally Posted by ProfessorWalsh View Post
The IC consequence for what those Padwans were doing would not have been liked by that player. The kind of action she was engaging in would have been met with, by canon and lore, the following ruling:

"You and (the other Padawan) are never to see, or interact with each other again."
Being almost certain I witnessed the event, I would say your IC reaction was correct. Nothing there states you, as a Jedi, can't immediately react/make assumptions on the moment. You witnessed something IC that ressembled inappropriate behavior (from your perspective) that was unbecoming of a Jedi, especially in the public eye in which you are a representative of the Order.

As far as consequences go... That is entirely up in the air. Certainly the council would question them on the matter along with their Masters, individually or in a group, whether or not they would be restricted or not would be based on the councils judgements along with influences from the Padawan's Masters. It's also entirely possible the Council will reprimand the Padawan's and leave any consequences up to their Masters who are immediately responsible for their training. Based on what I saw from class quests, the council may even choose to blame their Masters for the incident.

Sendra's Avatar


Sendra
02.14.2012 , 02:02 PM | #25
Quote: Originally Posted by ProfessorWalsh View Post
The IC consequence for what those Padwans were doing would not have been liked by that player. The kind of action she was engaging in would have been met with, by canon and lore, the following ruling:

"You and (the other Padawan) are never to see, or interact with each other again."
As a hypothetical situation, let's assume that we were in a situation in which you really could determine the IC consequences for this IC action (which of course, we are not).

There are quite a few ways you could RP these consequences to ensure more quality RP for everyone involved and more opportunities for character development for everyone involved.

You could sternly lecture everyone involved (masters included) and give them some kind of pennance or community service project to accomplish while they ponder their shortcomings.

You could dump the problems on the masters and tell them to fix it right now and make sure it never happens again.

You could reassign the padawans to different masters - of course this would be with the OOC cooperation of every person involved, padawans, old masters, new masters.

You could maybe switch the masters of these two padawans, saying that if he (or she) can't handle the one padawan, maybe he can manage to teach something to the other one. This could be good for some good RP both serious and comic.

Even with the decree you have given, jumping straight to the end past all sorts of RP-building intermediate steps, there is still an opportunity for some RP in deliberately flouting the order and sneaking around being together anyway, and trying not to get caught. The trouble is, by cutting off all the intermediate situations and jumping straight to almost the most severe, you would have (if you had the ability) raised the stakes so high that RP was no longer fun.

Darth_Slaine's Avatar


Darth_Slaine
02.14.2012 , 02:27 PM | #26
The OP seems confused on a few of the main guidelines for RP.

First, authority over another RPer is not the result of having a title or RPing a law-enforcement figure -- it is the product of OOC discussion. You cannot impose your authority over someone else just as you cannot hit/kill/drug someone else's character without their permission.

Whether your authority is derived from an in-game title or your IC-backstory does not matter any more than wearing PVP gear means you can go around one-shotting everyone in a cantina. Before you exercise power over the actions of someone else's character you need to get the player's permission.

Second, there seems to be a blurring of IC and OOC motivations. The OP confuses "me" and "my character" in several places. You will sometimes read a player claiming, "My character couldn't let that sort of thing go on" this is silly. Characters, shockingly, are not in control of their own actions -- players are. We as players decide when our character will choose to interact and when they will not (an example of this is the /ignore function the OP mentioned). That is why there is the old rule of thumb: if you don't like the look of an RP session don't get involved in it.

One cannot say that his character was forced to intervene one moment but be willing to put the same players on /ignore the next. You either need to acknowledge all IC interactions or you don't... and we all know that you don't.

Third, and most importantly, you should never judge another player's RP. The OP did not like the way these people were RPing, he entered their scene and really didn't like the fact that they failed to acknowledge his authority and so he is willing to put them on /ignore because they are "bad RPers"... I'm willing to bet if a Jedi Master who had been elevated one day before the OP came along and said, "No, it's okay" the OP would not bow before this strange master's authority.
There are many possible reasons why heavy canon-loving RPers might engage in such a scene -- perhaps it is part of an espionage mission and they are acting as bait to draw out a Sith spy-master... but the OP took the characters' IC explanations to be the same as the players' OOC explanation.
In a delicate situation -- especially one in which you are planning to create conflict -- it is absolutely necessary to check with the players first. You don't need to do this in every walk-up RP situation but you should when you plan on having your character step in and say, "You're doing it wrong!"

It is not the job of RPers to protect the game world. It is the job of RPers to make sure that a courteous and safe environment for RP exists. We achieve this by communicating with each other, not barging in when we aren't wanted and not forcing our will on the actions of other players' without permission.

As other posters have noted, this may have been a great IC moment and only the OP is having OOC trouble with it. I believe this is because the OP has not taken the time to disentangle IC and OOC perspectives in his RP. The thread seems to want to be subtitled "Do what I want you to do!"

It is a shame that threads like these need to crop up. By threads like these I mean those that pretend to be about a topic (in this case verisimilitude) but are actually 90% rants like "You won't believe what happened to me at the Imperial Fleet!"

Courtesy is always the best course of action.

ProfessorWalsh's Avatar


ProfessorWalsh
02.14.2012 , 07:35 PM | #27
Quote: Originally Posted by Sendra View Post
This may be what you believe the Jedi Council would do. But for some strange reason - that you are not privy to - they don't. Those padawans are NOT censured by the Council, not punished by the council in any way.
That is what this was all about.

Verisimilitude.

We know canonically that is exactly how the Council reacts. We know the Council only permits Jedi to engage in such relationships who:

1. Were raised in the Order.
2. Are Jedi Knights at least.
3. Have shown the most serious mind and ability to detach.

These Padawans might have met criteria 1, but absolutely not 2 or 3.

If they aren't censured by the Council and in fact continue with their behavior that instantly breaks the setting. At that point the Council, whom we know how they react as early as Tython, no longer enforces the rules of the Jedi Order. That instantly opens it up for every Jedi in the game to act that way without fear of reprisal from the Jedi Council and that breaks the spirit of playing a Jedi completely.

These two Padawans were not "helpless victims" and I did not come in and "bully" them. Nor did I invade their scene.

If they don't want their scene invaded they can take it to PM's or not do it at a public bar setting frequented by many other players.
"There is no room for compromise. We walk the path of the light side, or we fall into darkness. There is no gray area, Ben."
~ Jedi Grand Master Luke Skywalker (P. 187 FotJ, Book II: Omen)
Host of the Jedi Council stream also author of From the Journal of Val Starwind

ProfessorWalsh's Avatar


ProfessorWalsh
02.14.2012 , 07:37 PM | #28
Quote: Originally Posted by Darth_Slaine View Post
It is not the job of RPers to protect the game world. It is the job of RPers to make sure that a courteous and safe environment for RP exists. We achieve this by communicating with each other, not barging in when we aren't wanted and not forcing our will on the actions of other players' without permission.
This I call shenanagins on completely. It absolutely is the job of the players to protect the game world and maintain verismilitude in the setting. Otherwise you get a "I do what I want" setting and that isn't worth RP'ing in.
"There is no room for compromise. We walk the path of the light side, or we fall into darkness. There is no gray area, Ben."
~ Jedi Grand Master Luke Skywalker (P. 187 FotJ, Book II: Omen)
Host of the Jedi Council stream also author of From the Journal of Val Starwind

Sendra's Avatar


Sendra
02.14.2012 , 07:53 PM | #29
Quote: Originally Posted by ProfessorWalsh View Post
If they aren't censured by the Council and in fact continue with their behavior that instantly breaks the setting.
Or the responsible RPers among us find ways to interpret and otherwise put twists on the situation so that it does NOT break the setting.

I repeat - you are not privy to the decisions and inner workings of the Jedi Council present at this moment in this world. You know what you believe they should and would do. That is all you know.

As a responsible Jedi you can be miffed, puzzled, confused, even outraged that the Council doesn't act as you expect they will. But you cannot decide that they in fact do decide this. If you do still insist that the Jedi Council did something the rest of us, and the padawans in question, know they didn't do, then there are plenty who will assume you to be the immersion-breaking bad RPer. The rest of us will assume you to be delusional.

Quote:
At that point the Council, whom we know how they react as early as Tython, no longer enforces the rules of the Jedi Order. That instantly opens it up for every Jedi in the game to act that way without fear of reprisal from the Jedi Council and that breaks the spirit of playing a Jedi completely.
People are not going to quit RPing the way they see fit just because someone else got away with "RPing badly".

Do you really believe that the only thing that keeps any of us RPing in any kind of meaningful way is the fear of reprisal from some fictitious (and not all that powerful) Council? Seriously?

Darth_Slaine's Avatar


Darth_Slaine
02.14.2012 , 08:20 PM | #30
Quote: Originally Posted by ProfessorWalsh View Post
This I call shenanagins on completely. It absolutely is the job of the players to protect the game world and maintain verismilitude in the setting. Otherwise you get a "I do what I want" setting and that isn't worth RP'ing in.
No. The setting has been established and is constantly reinforced by the game itself. Indeed Star Wars has an extremely detailed setting history. Star Wars does not need RPers to protect it.

RPers are here to build an RP community -- something the game cannot do. The success of RP is not measured in how close it comes to the canon (again that is done officially by people that are not you) but by how much enjoyment it creates for its participants. If people leave an RP session happy then RP, no matter what it looked like, was good.

Now, you might say that you did not leave the session happy, so let us look at that....

You saw someone else's RP scene in progress. You disagreed with how the characters should be played as in your view they were not acting like Padawans. You say you knew they were Padawans because they had the titles on. You say they talked like Padawans but they did not behave like Padawans.... I'm not sure that makes sense.
Anyway, here you seem to be metagaming, as others have pointed out, because you used an invisible game mechanic to call out a character's class when their behavior would have told you they were not Padawans.
Strike One.

You decided, based on this OOC knowledge to confront the players in question. You rolled up and said, "You cannot do this" and they said, "get lost." This, in your view, is bad RP because they did not acknowledge your authority... authority based on your in-game title "Master." Now, if your Master title is 'real' than so are all "Champions of the Great Hunt" as every title is granted by the same game mechanic. If you insist that your title is "real' because you followed the quest chain to receive it, you must then acknowledge that you performed everything in your quest chain IC -- and so did every other Master you see sitting around fleet cantinas. Having the title "Master" does not make you a Jedi Master in everyone else's RP, just as being a "Champion of the Great Hunt" does not make your character the world's greatest Bounty Hunter. The same principle applies.
Now, there is nothing wrong with playing a Jedi master in RP, but before you can use a Master's power over a Padawan you must get the permission of that Padawan's player. Instead you tried to godmode the situation based on your game-mechanic title.
Strike two.

Next you threatened to put those players on /ignore and that's your choice -- though they were kind enough to let you into their RP and that is something you should be thankful for. You never tried to arrange any permissions or even understanding through OOC means. You went straight into conflict mode because OOC you did not like their IC play but that is not where strike three comes in...

Strike three was making this thread not as a discussion of verisimilitude and how it can be approached in-game but instead making it a spotlight on RP you dislike. Of the 650 or so words in the post 500 are about the RP session you wished to rail against and the rest are introduction. At no point do you discuss verisimilitude beyond saying it isn't "I do what I want" when what you really mean is that it's "You had better do what I want!"

Verisimilitude is exceedingly hard to judge and must always be a compromise. We can never reach actual truth in fiction and often must depart from the real to create the significant.
Everyone surviving all these lightsaber fights with their limbs intact would be a challenge to verisimilitude -- players choosing to ignore your in-game title is not. Why is it that people that care so much about realism are never willing to delete their characters when they die in-game? I guess it is always about the other guy's lack of realism and never our own.

If you would actually like to discuss the theory of verisimilitude in literature, that would be fine, but please don't use it as a cover to attack some RPers who did nothing worse than allow you into their fun.

Compromise and courtesy. Think about how they might improve your own RP.