Many of the players here come from many different backgrounds; some players are used to forum-based RP, others from journals, others from standard table-top, some from MUDs, some don't even know what RP stands for (or refer to IC scenes as 'role plays'). Due to this, it is often encouraged that some sort of Rosetta Stone be established with a few helpful hints:

  • Power-posing is bad. Power-posing is when you apparently take over someone else's character, posing what their character does or says (or doesn't do or doesn't say). Reaching to grab someone's arm is fine. Grabbing someone's arm is not so fine (they might be a ghost? They might have twice your Reflexes and can jerk away before you get within an inch of them? They might have an electric shirt that'd zap your hand?) Saying folks might stare at your character is fine, as is claiming random nameless folks are staring. Saying that the other players' characters are staring is not so fine. You pose for your character, I'll pose for mine. Over-posing for NPCs can also fall into this. It's often best to guess that NPCs will try to maintain their status quo.
  • Meta-posing is bad. Your character might be sitting there thinking of their idle days growing up. Unless you're saying it out loud or doing a demonstrative dance about it, my character would have no clue (unless I'd already +proved some sort've Mind Reading type of ability and made any +rolls). Just act like your character is lost in thought and it's a safe bet the other folks will ask; you can tell them then.
  • Present Tense is good. Much like power-posing, if you say that your character "walked into the room, looked around, and picked up the lamp", that's pretty much forcing all the other characters to not stop you from touching the fragile lamp (that they were all standing around guarding at the time). If you say that you "are going to walk into the room, look about, and shall pick up the lamp", it's better than past tense but still implies that nothing the other folks do will stop you. Present tense (maybe Present Progressive) is often the best to use…Bob walks into the room. Looking around, he starts towards the lamp as if to pick it up. ..that's pretty good. Just make sure you limit your actions to a few seconds unless the situation dictates otherwise.
  • Punctuation is good. Since this is a text-based medium, improperly using the text will just lead to no good. Typos can be easily forgiven, but it's a good idea to at least attempt to enclose the spoken parts of poses in quotes, to use uppercase letters at the starts of sentences and for names, to use the proper it's/its, to use the proper you're/your, to use the proper their/they're/there, et cetera…
  • Accents are iffy. Much like spelling and punctuation, your poses are rather ineffective if the other players can't understand what your character is doing or saying. For those characters with accents, it's often best to avoid typing out the nuances of the accent ("Aye've been walk'n oot ‘n’ aboot th' toon") and just let folks know that there's an accent (Bob says in an Irish accent so thick it'd take a knife to cut through it, "I've been walking out and about the town"). A little "da", "aye", or "oui" here and there aren't bad, but if more than half of your character's spoken words would fail a spell-check, that's getting iffy.
  • Pose order is iffy. Generally, it's best to wait until everyone else in a given scene has posed before you pose again. That way, you won't have someone attempting to prevent you from doing what you claimed to start to do. To help with this, try "+help RPQ" so the pose order can be jotted down. Often it's a good idea to also toss in a place on the queue for the NPCs. Now, sometimes this won't work out and it's better to just let three other folks pose before you pose again, or to make use of "places" code. Places can save a lot of woes, but the 'three pose delay' is best to be used only after asking OOCly if that is preferred by the other folks in the scene.
  • Pose content is crucial. MU* RP is dynamic and much like improv theater. If your pose doesn't note what other folks have posed, possibly react to those details, and then "bring something to the table" for other folks to note and react to, it's not much of a pose. Sometimes you can pose a short sentence or two that covers these bases, other times you can pose half a screen that does nothing for furthering the scene. It's not the size of the pose, but what you do with it.

NOTE: None of these are hard and fast rules. They're just good ideas. Many times one will be in a scene with someone they know quite well OOCly and it's perfectly fine to pose unexpectedly climbing up onto their shoulders, in the past tense, thinking about what you're considering having for dinner, talking in a bad Spanish accent. These are just the common denominator touchstones.

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