Last week, I saw an interesting thread on one of the RP forums I visit.
A roleplayer was asking for advice regarding a situation with one of
her RP characters. The general gist of the situation was this: She had
been roleplaying a relationship with someone, and they had a child
together. The child was another character she'd made on her account. The
two roleplayers had a falling out and stopped speaking to each other.
The roleplayer in question asked if it was all right to tell the
ex-friend that he could not roleplay their child, because the child was a
character on her account.
Needless to say, since the questioning roleplayer had the character on her account, it was her character. She had every right to tell the
ex-friend not to roleplay the child, because the character didn't belong
to him. But it's situations like this, tangles in the threads of RP
relationships and arguments between players, that create sticky
situations both for roleplayers and the storylines they roleplay
together. How do you know when things are getting out of hand before it gets to the point of a virtual child custody battle?
Roleplaying is an exercise in creating a character that is convincing.
It's a bit like an acting exercise; convincing roleplay requires you to
sink yourself into your character and see the world through their eyes,
to react to situations and other characters just as a real person would.
When you pull this off, a character turns into a realistic avatar that
appears to have just as many emotions and feelings as you yourself do.
But roleplaying emotions and experiencing emotions are two very, very
different things. For some, it's hard to separate real emotion from
character emotion -- they seem like one and the same. Actors are experts
in identifying that line between what is fiction and what is reality.
They can slip into convincing emotional states and out again with
relative ease. Roleplayers may seem like actors, but while actors are
trained to see that line, roleplayers have to find that line for
And some roleplayers never find that line or even think about it. For
some, what they roleplay and the emotions they feel while they roleplay
translates and crosses over to how they are feeling in real life. If
they roleplay a scene and their character gets angry, they feel anger
even after they've logged off the game. If they roleplay a romance with
another character, they begin to think they have genuine feelings for
the person they are roleplaying with -- even if they've never exchanged
any details about their out-of-game lives with each other.
It is really hard to spot when a roleplayer is taking events a little
too seriously. As a roleplayer, you're looking for genuine bits of
emotion from those you roleplay with, but those genuine bits of emotion
are an in-character thing. If you notice that your roleplaying partner
is acting strangely, carrying anger out of character or treating you as
more than a roleplay partner, this may be a warning sign. Sell wow gold
and if that's
the case, you may want to stop the roleplay between the two of you and
let things go before it gets too serious.
If you are having issues with emotional entanglements in game, don't
beat yourself up over it. Actors are trained to separate that line;
roleplayers are not. However, if you feel that your emotions are getting
the better of you -- if you begin to feel those emotions carry over
even after you log off and say goodbye for the evening -- you may want
to examine how seriously you're taking your roleplay.
If you're still angry, ask yourself why exactly you're angry and who you
are angry at. If you're feeling a romantic connection with a roleplay
partner, ask yourself how well, really, do you know them? Are those
things you fancy traits of the roleplayer or just traits of the
character? If your emotions are getting the better of you, you may want
to consider taking a break and stepping back from roleplaying until you
evaluate the situation.
I had a friend who joined a guild with the best intentions of simply
getting out there and roleplaying his character. He quickly worked his
way up the ladder within the roleplaying guild and found himself an
officer in it. But after he became an officer, one of his fellow
officers began making advances on his character, and it quickly became
apparent she wanted to roleplay some sort of relationship with him. He
wasn't interested in roleplaying romances with his character; what he
wanted out of roleplay was more serious story and less soap opera
This was all well and good, but when he politely informed her of this
out of character and had his character gently turn her character down,
she didn't care for it at all. And thus began weeks upon weeks of her
character slowly sinking into depression and experiencing all sorts of
horrible situations, all because his character had refused her advances.
Not only did this make him feel guilty for not giving in to her
demands, but it brought the mood of the rest of the guild down as well.
Having a roleplaying officer do nothing but roleplay her character's
misery wasn't really anyone's idea of a good time.
Any attempt to cheer her character up was met with yet another wave of
misery. Any attempt to make her character happy failed miserably. It was
becoming incredibly clear that the only way her character would ever
cheer up and snap out of her pit of woe was if his character consented,
gave in, and agreed to be in a relationship with hers. Until then, the
guild would be forced to deal with an officer character who did nothing
to further the guild's fun factor and instead deliberately dragged it
Let me be clear here: This was not a situation where a character was
being played as true to character. This was a situation where one
roleplayer decided to make another feel incredibly guilty in order to
get her way. She had no respect for how he wished to play his character,
and she had no intention of allowing him to play his character the way
he intended to play it. Not only was she completely dismissing
everything his character was, she was trying to personally guilt him
into giving in.
And he felt terrible
about it. He felt horrible that her
character was so depressed. He hated seeing what fun new bout of
depression she was going through whenever he logged on. He felt
incredibly guilty that he didn't give in. Logging in for roleplay was
like logging into a tense battlefield, and every roleplayer in the guild
was simply walking on eggshells and waiting for the explosion. Needless
to say, the explosion happened, and the entire guild detonated as a
If you ever, ever
feel pressured to have your character act in a
way that is contrary to how you want your character to act, get out.
Don't feel badly about it, wow
gold for sale
and certainly don't give in to it. If your
roleplaying partners have that little respect for your style of
roleplay, if they are so obsessed with giving their character what they
want, that is emotional manipulation, not roleplay. That is godmodding
taken to the extreme. Get out. Don't look back.
In fact, if you're ever feeling uncomfortable in a roleplay situation,
no matter what that situation, that's a gigantic red flag you shouldn't
ignore. In-character threats should never make you feel threatened in
real life, and if you feel like things are spinning out of control-- if
you feel the slightest bit uncomfortable with what is happening to your
character -- you should immediately call a halt to the roleplay. Have a
discussion with your roleplaying partner, and let them know that you
aren't comfortable with how the situation is turning out.
There is a certain degree of give-and-take with roleplay. Your character
isn't always going to have a life of sunshine and roses. Occasionally,
they're going to run across a person who doesn't care for them. This
isn't a reflection on you as a person; it's one fictional character
disliking another fictional character. But just because it's all
fictional doesn't mean that every roleplay situation needs to be played
out. It doesn't meant that you have to be comfortable with everything
that happens to your character.
And it certainly
doesn't mean you're required to roleplay any
experience you run into, especially if it's emotionally taxing or
repugnant. Situations like these require some out-of-character
conversation to clear up. If your roleplay partner isn't willing to
compromise on roleplay situations you're uncomfortable with, it may be
time to find another roleplay partner.
Roleplaying can be incredibly fun, but it can also lead to some
incredibly intense situations. Human emotion is a volatile thing, and
it's sometimes hard to separate reality from fiction. But the emotion
that two fictional characters experience should always be between those
characters and never between the players. Keeping a watchful eye for
these red flags will help you avoid the drama, and embrace the fun.