Some roleplay mechanics are good, and others are bad. But some are SO bad that it could eventually lead to the death of one. I'm here writing this article to explain why this happens and the ways to avoid it.
Why does this happen?
Roleplays can be so powerful that it could be an immersive experience. This results in players becoming so immersed within this roleplay that they feel like they're writing a book, or directing/acting in a movie. Either way, players tend to rush their way through getting to a certain part of a roleplay or finishing it completely, while others are taking their sweet time or just not available at the moment. That often leads to people leaving roleplays because they fail to catch up in it, but there are multiple types of reasons why these roleplays fail to work. The most common reasons why are as they follow:
- Players lost interest in the roleplay and leave: This is the most common reason why a roleplay failed. People don't find their roleplay to be interesting anymore and leave.
- Some players rush through the roleplay: Players are trying to make their moves as fast as possible, and not thinking about others who may be at a slower pace. On Wikia, this happens quite often, Fast keyboard typers rush without knowing it, while slower typers fail to get a chance to roleplay because of editing conflicts.
- Too many alignments at one time: This tends to make the roleplay very unorganized with good players battling against evil players, and the neutral players are somewhere in between. When this happens, roleplays are much easier to deviate, with the players not realizing until it's too late.
- Roleplays are started without planning: This is a very stupid, yet almost inevitable way for a roleplay to end. The writers of the roleplay probably did have a plot, but failed to explain how they can move the plot forward, thus causing the players to improvise, which often results to confusion and certain failiure.
- Roleplay has no working hours: Just like how a job has working hours-- when they start working today and when they stop working today, the roleplay needs to have one like that. There's a big chance that the ones you are roleplaying with live in different timezones, so the sun might still be up where you're at while the moon just rose up 12 hours ago from you. This often results in idling players to fall behind in the roleplay when the active ones are still up and ready to continue.
How do you prevent this?
- Players lost interest in the roleplay and leave: To prevent this, keep adding action to your roleplays. Make it so your players can still be interested and not die of boredom. I understand if there are some parts where things need to be quiet, but understand that roleplays work like movies. Without anything happening in a movie, the watchers would be bored and fall asleep through it.
- Some players rush through the roleplay: Try doing turn-based roleplays. This is when you wait for a player to make their choice, and once they do, it'll be your turn to make your choice. Then it'll be the next player's turn to make their choice and etcetera. This can even work in larger roleplays with more than 4 players.
- Too many alignments at one time: Roleplays should normally have one alignment, so there is one path all players are taking. If you really need to have more than two, do it. But make it so you are the only one controlling the characters in those alignments, so there won't be any confusion for players whatsoever.
- Roleplays are started without planning: Just like how a driver plans a way to get from Point A to Point B, plan a way to get from the start, to the climax, and to the resolution of the roleplay. After that, carry out the plan to the rest of the players. This is a slow process, but it's key to keeping a roleplay alive.
- Roleplay has no working hours: To prevent this, establish working hours of the roleplay. Think about where each player lives, then when to continue and when to pause it for later, to negotiate with timezones.
These are the five ways to keep your roleplay alive. If you believe these suggestions are not good enough, or if you have more ideas, then let me know by commenting, or messaging me privately .