Mage/Mission

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xxxxxWe tell stories of the World of Darkness. This should go without saying, but it does not. Stories on a MUSH are cooperative between player and story-teller. This means that as a staffer, I am supposed to be sensitive to the types of stories that you want to participate in, but it also means that I am constrained by the milieu in which these stories are told. Some stories belong in this setting and some do not. I should try to tell stories that are enjoyable to participate in, but I am also going to tell stories within the proper context. In the World of Darkness there is no guarantee that the good guys win or that they even survive. It is easier to be selfish; it is easier to be apathetic. This is what makes the World of Darkness dark: it takes effort and pain to shine a light upon it. In practical terms, I must never penalize people simply for being selfish or apathetic, and I should never give players a break because they've decided to act as heroes. This is tough for some players to stomach; this is sometimes tough for me to stomach, as I like heroes, but it is the way this world was written, and it is the world in which we play.

xxxxxWe determine the consequences of player's actions. This means, in principle, that I do not restrict the IC choices a player makes with his or her character. The only exception is when I believe that the motivating factors for the IC choice arise out of OOC conditions. If I believe that a character is making a choice out of a player's frustration, because of a player's grudge against another player, or through an accident of time or memory, I can question those motivations. However, I am neither a god nor a mind-reader, so all I will do is question the motivations of those actions. If a player assures me that the motivations are completely IC, I must accept that. However, if a player assures me that the motivations are completely IC, and I find out later that they are not, I may remove them from my sphere.

xxxxxThis also means that if you have a problem with the IC actions that another character takes, I am under no obligation to resolve the conflict. If a player is mystified or stymied by another character's actions, I will only offer possibilities for resolution that a character would know about IC and that their player may not know about, such as appeals to higher authority. These possibilities are suggestions, and there is no guarantee that they will work. Their actions may be doing great harm, but that is an IC conflict, and you will need to resolve it conflict by IC means. Mage NPCs will work only within their stated personalities and abilities, and they may not care.

xxxxxFinally, this means that I am under no obligation to tell you how to accomplish an IC goal if your character (or player) cannot figure it out for yourself. Again, I can offer suggestions that I think that the character might know ICly that the player does not, but I do not have to. These conflicts are for the players to resolve, not for staff to resolve.

xxxxxWe insure as well as we can that the MUSH is ethically fair for our players in OOC matters. The world is not fair IC. Period. A werewolf who gets the drop on you ICly will most likely kill you. There may be twice as many Sabbat vampires as there are mages. Your chantry head can betray you to the Unseelie Changelings to be used as a sex toy. These are IC inequities, and if you are screwed over by them, then tough cookies. My responsibility as a staffer is to make sure the rules as written and the setting as described is applied fairly and equally. This means that all players who desire it get equal access to my time. This means I do not choose to ignore certain types of stories because the majority of players don't like them or I don't like them.

xxxxxThis does not mean I do not get to bend the rules; there is a difference between being ethically fair and applying all rules with adamantine precision, regardless of the situation. I try to minimize this occurrence by keeping clear distinctions between rules and guidelines, and as I said above, I will interpret the rules with regards to setting. For example, by the rules, a mage with sufficient levels of correspondence, forces, and prime should be able to kill anything on the grid that is not immune to magick without fear or reprisal or any defense, (a.k.a. the Telenuke). However, if this was true, the Technocracy should have eliminated any known supernatural being decades ago, and that's not what the books describe. Thus, I discourage this use of your powers, and I will not adjudicate in its favor.

xxxxxThis also means that I am your advocate with other staff when there is a conflict with another staffer over /sphere/ matters. Note the emphasis. If there is a matter of conflict with another staffer and it has nothing to do with sphere rules, sphere powers, or sphere society, then I am not involved. For example, if the law staffer is ignoring your arcane, then I am your advocate, and I work with the law staffer to resolve the problem. But, if you have a problem with the law staffer about how the police are resolving an investigation, that is not my jurisdiction, and I should not be involved. There are established guidelines on this MUSH for resolving such difficulties. Thus, questions about building, code, and XP spends are not my concern. I will not involve myself in such trouble.

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