| The object is fun.|
And in the World of Darkness game system, fun is telling a great story with the help of others. It is not necessarily winning, but taking the story to its logical conclusion. Some people do not have fun playing dark and gritty stories, or stories that are not winnable. These people are not wrong; life is short enough you need to find what does it for you – and there is no shame in finding out that this sphere is not for you.
Play what you want to play
Potential players sometimes ask me if I want them to play something, or want to know what I will accept. After years of doing this, I have found that you need to play what you want to play. If try to steer you into playing something I would like to see, but you are not into, you end up not playing it. This wastes both my time and yours. If there is a certain type or role I want to see in the game, I’ll make an NPC and play it myself.
Why no Sabbat?
There are no Sabbat PCs, because I think it is intrinsically impossible to play a Sabbat story online with any quality. In fact, it would be very difficult running such a chronicle in a bi-weekly table top game. The Sabbat’s rasion d’etre is the application of brutal violence and depravity, the karmic payback for the Elder’s domination of their childer. Lent certain single-mindedness by their vinculum, it would be one combat and degradation of innocents after another, so much so it would bore me. And a bored staffer is an inactive staffer.
You have Camarilla, Anarchs, and Independents, (and soon, Kuei-Jin) and in that menagerie one has enough choices to play a villain, if one wishes.
I use the +request system exhaustively. It will be very rare for me to schedule a scene more than a day in advance; because of my other life activities I do not like being booked so far ahead. With parties, balls, or known attacks, I will schedule, but grudgingly. If you want to have a scene with me, use the +request code and get in my queue.
We have established an adult world, with all the possibilities of the adult world. Gratuitous Violence, Sex, and Sexual Violence all have a place in the story. We at Sheltering Sky respect those who have RP preferences requesting non-participation in such scenes – and we will never force anyone to do so. That being said, the sphere I run is dark – and you should expect these things to come up, if only in passing conversation.
Some staffers have issues with PCs who only stay in their bedrooms and TS (i.e. TinySex, the representational act of having your MUSH PCs have sex) – I do not have a problem with it per se. If you are always dealing with your lovers, or lovers, you are free to do so – I will not OOCly punish you nor sneer at you. However, the plot of the game still continues, and your status will suffer because of it. A PC in my sphere should expect to be caught up in the sphere, whether they wish it or no.
IC relationships happen, whether the twisted love of a vampire’s bond, or the hatred of enemies, there will be actions which could lead to superb or disheartening effects on another character. It’s highly important to remember that anything a character does to another IC, is exactly that: IC. This is the understanding we have when you ask to be in the Vampire sphere.
OOC attitude, threats and tantrums will be tolerated only immediately. Everyone has had an adverse reaction to their favorite PC getting not only killed, but killed after being betrayed by an ‘ally’ or killed after doing something the player should have recognized as careless. There is an understandable period where that coffee cup is going to find a wall, and the world is shit, you bastards.
However, after a day or so, if there continues to be attitudes, threats, tantrums, or, worse case, the new PC acts in ways detrimental to the killer/betrayer because of OOC motivations, that is where I will move in and put a stop to it, up to and including asking the player to leave the sphere. It’s a dangerous game, and one must be mature about it.
It is your job to navigate the world. It is my job to portray the reactions of the World to you. Sometimes bad things happen.
The Other Guys
I will never build artificial fences between the spheres – which mean other spheres will come and try involve themselves in vampire plots. Good for them! The world is not subdivided into little corners where each Sphere can solve their problems without interference.
But, you say, mages and shifters are powerful, and facing them one on one, we’ll always lose! It’s not fair!
Two things about that:
1) It’s the World of Darkness: “Fair” is not in its vocabulary.
2) You are Kindred, shadow masters of mortal society. If you try to fight a werewolf pack by yourself, you will probably, if not certainly, lose. If you try to outcast a mage, you will probably, if not certainly, lose. However, vampires have unprecedented control of the mortal systems, and also a system of favors exchanged between them. All of Kindred should know the adage “If we don’t hang together, we will certainly hang separately”. Use your strengths, padawan.
The main strength of the Kindred is influences. We have a good system of influences here. Use them.
You can gather as much XP here as you like quite easily. But note – I reserve the right to ask for a justification of an XP spend. I reserve the right to deny XP spends due to inactivity or any other reason, regardless of how much you have hoarded.
Unlike the former wizard who ran a different style, my NPCs are specifically /not/ robots. They will have their own goals, desires, dislikes, and plots. They may help you more than you need, and they may thwart you for their own reasons. Treat them as you would a PC.
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