Author Topic: Noob Guide - EFU for the ROLEPLAYING SNOB  (Read 1267 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Damien

  • Hero Member
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    1214
    • View Profile
on: December 11, 2020, 02:04:26 PM
I think at the core of everything really DMs just want you standing for something, doing/trying something, and without risks, ie dying  to being unprepared,  or not knowing the capability of your enemies, I think it is really hard to get players to do this.

I'm really not sure where the whole roleplay part comes from though. I've played NWN for maybe 16 years, and can confidently say that the level of rp expected here is much higher than any where else, solely due to risk. Without risk players get complacent with their characters and end up doings OOC or even start losing their personality all together and taking on the player's actual personality, which just isn't the case here really (wundy aside)



Random_White_Guy

  • Hero Member
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    4424
    • View Profile
on: December 11, 2020, 06:06:42 PM
Quote
Characters that reach level 10 are encouraged by DMs and players alike to just retire.

My personal opinion I believe the feeling is more "Shit or get off the pot". Level 10 is a big deal and as someone who has played EFU for almost 15 years I only had one level 10 PC, ever, and it was mostly on a lark because it was four days before the chapter change and the entire server was wiped and I never got to do anything with it.  It may be from a place of jealousy, or frustration, or just missing the prime time DM events because they don't feel "Right" for my PC to just show up and attend something, but I frankly can't imagine what i'd push on EFU with level 10 because i've never been there.

But to have that kind of mechanical prowess and influence and survivability is something that's always fascinated me. Teaching newer PCs, serving as a mentor, leading a faction, being the mechanical weight behind an agenda, or just facing the stupidly hardest content EFU can throw at you feeling like a chance you may survive as a Legendary Adventurer seems like such a new and wonderful world.

So when I see level 10 PCs who just hang out in taverns then go do scripted quests and more raises such a goblin in my head screaming "YOU HAVE SO MUCH, DO SOMETHING WITH IT, ANYTHING" Level 10 PCs in my opinion should be Leaders, Rockstars, or People who take stupidly high risks because they are actually able to potentially survive them. It's not just about existing in a vacuum and smashing quests over a few months or the occasional DM quest.

So yes, in part I would rather a PC who is level 10 and just "Existing" either retire or start taking insanely huge risks like trying to tackle entire faction NPCs, or facing the Permadeath challenges of the server, or trying to do wildly insane and increasingly risk vs reward things to either become level 11 and legends or go out in a blaze of glory.

One day I do hope to get a PC to level 10 to really flex it, but if it doesn't happen it doesn't mean I don't want to try and hold myself to a higher standard should I ever get there.

That aside one thing I would hope to point out though:

Quote
There are entire plotlines started by PCs, but you should never expect your character to have a custom-made, significant side plot.

This I feel is kind of a misnomer. I hate to say the phrase "Every PC is the star of their own plot" but at the end of the day it's 100% possible to ignore the entire metaplot, have nothing but PC interactions, and become fully immersed in EFU without DM activity. Especially in the quieter or more dead timezones the counterbalance to the playercount being so low is without DMs people really do get starved for something to do and content. That's not to say at peak population times there isn't a show to put on or things PCs can get involved in but - As someone with both insomnia and a wild work schedule it's always amazing when there's 10 or so PCs online and someone goes out of their way to craft a story even if it's as simple as "I'm a bandit and i've taken over the scraggleways, ha ha ho".  In those stages PCs really do just become like NPCs/tiny DMs and are able to try and keep the playerbase engaged or entertained which to me is the heart of roleplay on EFU. Taking the time to do something you enjoy and trying to splash it around so others can, if they so choose, get involved too.

But beyond the niche of bad timezones EFU exists as a player driven engine. It can be entirely wrenching and take a great deal of work and feel more effort than reward but the more you play with people and the more you get a feel for hosting events there's times you'll be able to cultivate entire broadly arching storylines where you can beg, borrow, steal, or buy PCs to help you out. Mercenary concepts exist, political rivals exist, PCs who just want to play Bards or spymasters exist. You get a feel for things and you can begin to weave threads and communicate in terms of what other PCs want, and learn how to use them.

It may not be as awesome as "DRAGON FIGHTS DBZ FLYING NPC" with huge server blasting implications, but if you take the time and effort to try and create your own PC plot and push it to the fullest your able -

Along the way PCs begin to help out, and a DM or two may take notice, and suddenly this entirely organic thing you created takes life in the world And that's something I feel is wholly unique to EFU and i've had trouble finding anywhere else, which is what keeps me coming back for more. It really is the most Sandbox server i've ever encountered.

- A PC Plot overthrew the main hub's government last chapter, props to Abala for it
-  A PC Plot to play an infamous crime lord lead to months of terror any times Madcaddies would get his hands into the criminal pie with Naga backing, long before Knavery existed Crime was purely PC Plot driven.
-  A PC plot to play an infamous Monster Hunter lead to chaos and anarchy and fury among Wilds PCs, at a time they were mostly ignored, big ups to Magister for the Falconer Era
- A PC plot to raise a God this chapter lead by Equinox saw a small god he created one day while bored become the Timeless One on our Wiki
- A PC plot lead in EFU:A lead by Iron_Oligarch saw an entire splintered faction brought back together and reunified under Castle Blackhearth
- A PC plot lead in EFU: 1 by yours truly lead to 6 PCs who would later be DMs come together at a time we were all little nubbin scrubs to make a criminal empire which lasted only two weeks but so much fun even today I remember it fondly.
- in EFU:A Fong and LovethESuit and others created the Archaeological Society of the Ziggurat which went on to all manner of hijinks and wonderous D&D Adventures and lorecraft implications
- Where theres a Dwarf, there's a PC Plot and Faction in so much of EFU's history as Dwarven Clans rose and fall.
[11:23 PM] Howlando: Feel free LealWG
[11:23 PM] Howlando: I'll give you a high five + fist bump tip



Auri

  • Newbie
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    15
    • View Profile
on: December 11, 2020, 07:55:30 PM
I agree with quite a lot in this post, but definitely not everything. Notably:

Quote
[8] THINK SHORT TERM (periodic wipeout events, random deaths)
Your character will die a lot in EFU. Every time it does, it will lose a level, which adds insult to injury. But, for the most part, your PC's career as an adventurer will be a rolercoaster of levels, going up and down until you generally approach the top levels in the server, which are around 10. After level 8, in fact, your character will not be able to go on most of the scripted quests, so unless it has an established social role within the EFU setting, it will probably stall.

I wouldn't say so. The amount of available scripted content always decreases as you level, sure, but there is frankly no shortage for any level range.  You are more likely to stall at high levels because your allies die, the political landscape becomes hostile, and/or you get alienated from the fresh crops of PCs. But, even then, you might be surprised by how easily DM XP is handed out.

Quote
Characters that reach level 10 are encouraged by DMs and players alike to just retire. Besides the random deaths from mismatched monster encounters and occasionally fatal PvP, your PC will also be subjected to wipe out events, which would be large (and extremely entertaining) DM events where something catastrophically dangerous happens, leaving the PCs to deal with overwhelming odds. The gist here is, you cannot expect your character to have a long and meaningful life. Most PCs will cycle through the lower levels a few times and either meet their final death or be abandoned out of player frustration.

This is not true if you don't want it to be. The characters who reached ring 1 were not at all short term.

The turnover rate is, indeed, very high on EFU compared to many similar projects, but that's because many players welcome it. Every new character is a new angle from which to learn about the lore, try a new faction, etc. Also, permadeath events from DMs are generally clearly communicated, and you can navigate PvP in many ways that result in something constructive. Sometimes the time is right for permadeath, but often it's not.

 I personally came from Ultima Online roleplay environments where mechanical permadeath was much more prevalent, and as a result "SURVIVE" was a perfectly natural, difficult, and obvious goal for a character. I came into EFU with that mindset. My current character is my first serious character, and she has been 10 for 2.5 months now. I'm not done with her. Are there people who think this is the wrong way to play, or would urge me to retire? Maybe. Fuck 'em.

If you have a goal in mind, then noone should give you crap for surviving to see that goal. Just own it. Hell, you might not even have a particular goal, or maybe you're bummed because your allies quit, or the current crop of characters has little synergy, or whatever. There is no way you are always going to be creative, or have energy, or a good vision of where you want to go. If people ever tell you you are not taking enough risks or not shaking things up enough or not playing EFU right... you can tell them Auri said to get lost.

There is no liimted number of high level pots. A level 10 is going to die to a sound burst just the same. There are easily level 7/8s who could wipe the floor with me.

Don't get me wrong: just living for a long time in itself is not interesting. Sooner or later you'll want to get things done, whether it's ringrunning past a certain point, making waves in the hub, carving out a reputation, whatever.  But if you're not there, and man, you're tired and you just want to sit by a fire and talk to people who stop to talk? Do it.

If that makes them scream internally, maybe that is their own problem.



SamB123

  • Full Member
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    229
    • View Profile
on: December 11, 2020, 10:34:49 PM
Regarding point #1:
I submit to you the following idea, and it's something everyone needs to get ahold of.

(Yes, everyone.)

The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa.

Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game.

Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse roleplayer if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically roleplayed better than an optimized one, and vice versa.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2020, 10:36:27 PM by SamB123 »



Dillusionist

  • Dungeon Master
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    724
    • View Profile
on: December 16, 2020, 07:24:16 AM
I can appreciate your thoughtful write-up, though I think opening with "I am a roleplay snob" is a 'touch' provacative...

It is true that EFU will simply be alien to most people used to more cooperative D&D party roleplay. I am not certain you can really say that mechanics 'come first' compared to roleplay, as most of us take storytelling and characterization very seriously. I think it is important to note that theatrics are a big part of EFU. You play with the understanding your character will end, and most people play to make a scene and go out with a bang.

1. EFU has complex mechanical systems and weaves them heavily into the story. Resources and money are scarce. Your character is meant to be faced with difficult choices. "Do I want to risk my life for what is good and right, or be bystander to horror? Do I want to be good and kind, or strong and cruel?" In the bulk of Neverwinter Nights roleplay, and most D&D for that matter, being heroic simply nets you more opportunities, resources, and power than being evil or cowardly. Permanent death and scarcity on EFU mean that heroism is a meaningful and significant act for a character.

4. I am sorry you've had a bad experience here. Though I disagree that intellectual roleplay is not valued. We have a vast forum for books written by PCs, and people do player scholars and philosophers all the time. I got into EFU in the first place because the game-world presented actual mysteries to uncover and interpret. This might not draw as much fanfare as death and murder, but its definitely there.

8. Characters end on EFU.  This is actually one of the more positive things about the server, as there is constantly cycling of new ideas. It keeps the world fresh. You don't have the same level 20 paladin sitting quietly on a bench for 3 years, systemically squashing every new threat. A DM will never actively encourage someone to retire "simply for being level 10".  Some characters will last over a year, others a month, depending on your risk-taking habits and perseverance. The 'meaning' of your character's run is up to you. I think you are approaching the fact your PC will end as reason not to bother investing time and energy into their story. Instead you can look at it as an opportunity to take risks,  make drama, and conclude the character if their goals are met. You will be investing less of yourself into a character, but more into building up your brand and reputation as a quality writer and roleplayer. You see how we all like to show off in our screenshot forum, for example. There will always be the next one and the balance of power will always change.

Its a stylistic adjustment. I hope you're able to give it a chance, and try our approach.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2020, 07:25:52 AM by Dillusionist »



Legebril

  • Newbie
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    16
  • Beyond Good and Evil
    • View Profile
on: December 16, 2020, 02:11:49 PM
Perhaps EFU could offer a chance to play "Commoner" class? Arelith has such implementation, it is for those that want to focuse on RP and crafting rather than adventuring.



RichÝrd

  • Sr. Member
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    357
    • View Profile
on: December 16, 2020, 05:03:18 PM
Perhaps EFU could offer a chance to play "Commoner" class? Arelith has such implementation, it is for those that want to focuse on RP and crafting rather than adventuring.


If you want to be a commoner just RP being a commoner. I hate the idea of X amounts of levels in "Commoner" dictating how much of a commoner your character truly is.

Also, Arelith's "Commoner" is basically just a glorified crafting factory on legs.



Electrohydra

  • Full Member
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    146
    • View Profile
on: December 16, 2020, 05:09:07 PM
Just play a rogue with high mental stats. There are a ton of rogue perks to support "commoner" style PCs.



parthenos

  • Newbie
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    29
    • View Profile
on: December 16, 2020, 09:06:52 PM
just play some egirl sorceress with the mesmer perk, and like..... 34 charisma ,  and you're ready to roleplay
Now playing: Kasur Scher



Aethereal

  • Hero Member
  • Status:
    Offline
    Posts:
    4239
  • Wizardry was for the Wise.
    • View Profile
on: January 13, 2021, 02:04:29 AM
Firstly it is good to see some level-headed feedback to this guide as well as the noted more 'knee-jerk' reactions, which are valuable in their own way.

The title of this guide lives up to its content. There is certainly an undercurrent of subtle and thankfully subdued bigotry going on, quite evident by comparison (the categorisation of, actually) of EFU with MMORPGs. It is what it is, and you've been good enough to be candid in your biases from the very onset.

There are however some remarks I do take issue with.


Intellectuals have little to no value in EFU society unless, again, they can somehow stoke the fires of armed conflict around the server.

I for one very highly value the intellectual character in EFU, being practically exclusively a player of this type of character. I think when you seek to explore a position in the setting, your character will have to take a side, as EFU offers vast areas of grey to discuss, dissect and analyse. I have had no trouble finding other characters in-game to progress my own various and vast in-character research. To me it is actually the most appealing aspect of the server, the ability to engage with scenarios and situations that let us delve into the philosophic, the metaphysical, the theoretical, scientific and in terms of the setting, its reality.

Please try to publish some writings in-game and in-character, pursue your inquiries fervently, and witness how naturally you will find your own niche and value in this "EFU society." Though I am also aware that I may speak from a position of privilege, and my account may contribute to a survivorship bias. But I think it is also a matter of dedication, like most things in EFU, the more you put into it, the more you will get out of it.

I just dislike seeing such discouragement, especially in something that is meant to be a guide.


Don't go overboard on the RP side of character building because, as I said before, RP is not the most important aspect of EFU. Combat is. Your PC will survive through carefully selected abilities, cultivated alliances, and the right equipment.

I think this is fair advice for newbies unaccustomed to the mechanically challenging nature of the EFU experience, especially in advising that carefully selected abilities, cultivated alliances, and certainly to some extend the right equipment will be conducive to having a better time. However, I do think roleplay is the most important aspect of EFU.

I have heard anecdotes from other players decrying the adventuring low-roleplay playerbase who seem very shallow in their approach, but I have personally not encountered this. It may be due to the fact that I generally do not partake of the questing culture, and certain other aspects of EFU (the highly competitive inter-factional struggle and PvP scene for example) that leads those of likemind to be the ones whom I end up interacting with most though.

Finally, good on you for airing your thoughts and biases. There is great value in keeping the channels of communication open, and the discussion of what EFU is and what it stands for. We are a diverse roleplaying community with varying playstyles, and though the majority may be driven by the competitive side of play, I think there is plenty of room for the roleplaying focused player. It just does take a bit of adapting; there's no doubt about that. I hope your guide helps people out, and that my own input helps those on the fence realise that though game mechanics may be an inevitable hurdle, hardcore roleplay is what it's all about.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2021, 02:11:57 AM by Aethereal »
---
'Even life eternal is not time enough to see, all the folly and despair of poor Humanity.' - To Life - A Shoggoth on the Roof

It is through Art, and through Art only, that we can realise our perfection.