Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
Sign in to follow this  
StormWolfe

Lore: How Much is too Much?

Recommended Posts

This topic has been touched on in the main forums. I'd like to address it here with a game management approach, not what we want to read when joining another site. Just our opinions as the creators of worlds.

 

  1. How much lore is too much for a site?
  2. Is it site dependent? In other words, does the amount of lore relate to how intuitive or user-friendly a world or realm is?
  3. Should we expect new members (and old, in some cases) actually read everything? Put in the work to learn the world and build a great character?
  4. Relates to #3: Are those of us with lore-heavy sites expecting too much of new members by having a lore-heavy site?

Someone somewhere went to sleep and dreamed us all alive.
Dreams get pushed around a lot, and I doubt if we'll survive.
We won't get to wake up, dreams were born to disappear.
And I'm pretty sure that none of us are here.
~ None of Us Here by Jim Stafford ~

 

sagas-button1.png.467e9214ee1a2d2a24c0030301948c27.png   aereth5.png    Smuggler's Blues RPG

 

RPG-Initiative

*your one-stop RPG resource site!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I say you need basic lore that describes the setting, the social environment, the species (if there are any outside of humanity), the political structure and any powerful dynamics like war and stuff. 

But I also think you might need a clearly labeled index with additional information. No matter how well you write up your lore you are always going to have players who want more and more information. From fauna, to flora, to common diseases, etc. Which means that you should (in my opinion) have a basic lore package for the players who are good with a simple information download - and then a more detailed index for those players who are hyper-attentive to details. 

 

How much lore the players HAVE to read of course is another matter. There are always going to be basic facets of the lore that a player needs to have a handle on to make a character that meshes with the setting. It is not unreasonable to expect a player to read over a basic lore package as long as you've kept it under say 4000 - 5000 words. 

 

I definitely think that some worlds are far more user-friendly than others. For instance if you only have humans then a simple line of "the people of _____ world are normal for humans, no special powers or abilities." In that case you don't need much lore; and if its set in a common easily researched real world location; that's the same. 

  • Love 1

spacer.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our lore site will have a well laid out index of all the documents. We're also planning on the "nations/races overview" quick reference document to add links to the you should really read this to play in this nation or to play this race.

 

I guess I am letting myself be influenced by the trends to go with as little lore as a site can get by with (same for character profiles). I am in no way dissing a site that has not fleshed out its lore and environment. If it works for them and their player base, then more power to them.

 

Despite trying really hard to condense and downsize - I just can't! My RP history makes me want to create a well-rounded, in-depth world. 

 

Now to answer my own questions...

 

How much lore is too much for a site? Is it site dependent? In other words, does the amount of lore relate to how intuitive or user-friendly a world or realm is?

  • IMHO, it depends on the site and how much it relates to our real world. 

Should we expect new members (and old, in some cases) actually read everything? Put in the work to learn the world and build a great character?

  • Again, in my opinion, yes. I'm very old-school when I go to a new site with an eye to joining it. I am going to read several character profiles - if the site uses them - to see what kind of characters get accepted and how in-depth bios usually are. I explore the premise, read all the lore (this might take some time, but I usually read it all). Last, if it's available to guests, I read some of the plots and threads. So, I expect new players and old-hands to do some work to join my sites. If they get stuck, we're all happy to answer questions. If the questions show they are making no effort to read lore, I give them links. 😉

Relates to #3: Are those of us with lore-heavy sites expecting too much of new members by having a lore-heavy site?

  • Sometimes, I think so. At other times, I feel like I made the effort to create a robust and beautiful world, the least everyone can do that wants to join it, is read the stuff

Someone somewhere went to sleep and dreamed us all alive.
Dreams get pushed around a lot, and I doubt if we'll survive.
We won't get to wake up, dreams were born to disappear.
And I'm pretty sure that none of us are here.
~ None of Us Here by Jim Stafford ~

 

sagas-button1.png.467e9214ee1a2d2a24c0030301948c27.png   aereth5.png    Smuggler's Blues RPG

 

RPG-Initiative

*your one-stop RPG resource site!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I definitely agree that it is important to make a thorough distinction between basic lore required to make a character and in-depth lore for those who want to delve deeper into the setting.

 

The main issue I tend to come across when looking over boards set in an original fantasy is that it is difficult to tell apart essential reading from further reading. Even more common is that when a board is filled with lore, I rarely ever find a simple few paragraphs describing the general premise for the setting so I often find it difficult to judge whether or not I am really interested enough in the board's concept to give pages upon pages of lore a thorough read.

 

My answers for question 1 and 2 would entirely depend on how well the information is organised and presented. However, I do believe with more lore, the more difficult it becomes to properly organise information.

 

As for 3, while I do not expect members to read everything, I do like to hope that members at least familiarise themselves with the essential. I prefer the approach of slowly introducing members to a setting where members naturally pick up on more advanced lore as they spend more time on the boards.

 

Finally, for 4, I believe it differs from board to board what you are able to expect from members. If it is an active board with dozens of posts a day, you can expect new members to make a bigger investment than you could as a board that only had a few active members with one or two posts a day.

  • Love 1

KvrAHBW.png

Fodlan Chronicles - A Fire Emblem Based RP Forum
Home | Getting Started | Affiliation Guidelines | Advertisements

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1. I don't know if there is such a thing as too much lore.
 

2. It's definitely site-dependent, considering some sites are completely original content while others are building upon something that already exists (fandoms, etc.). I don't think it depends on how user-friendly a world is—all play-by-post roleplay forums should strive to be as approachable and player-friendly as possible, but that's just the web designer in me talking.

 

If someone can't navigate your lore or your site in order to figure out how to play, you're only hurting your own game in the end. If you don't know how to organize information yourself, find someone to help you! 
 

3. I, personally, do not expect everyone to read everything, whether they are new or old. If a site literally covers an entire game world, it's impossible to expect a character from Kingdom X to know everything there is to know about Kingdom Y and C, let alone their own Kingdom's every secret. It's not how life works, especially in an original fantasy like my game where there isn't social media and there is no internet search engine at anyone's disposal. Myth, mystery, hearsay, and rumor are what make part of the game fun—misunderstandings, fears, etc. are all made more real by a bit of ignorance. 

 

I expect my players to know the game mechanics and how to play their characters in the setting they've placed them in. Those are the most important things. After that, what a person chooses to pursue in character or out of character is up to them.

 

4. I have a character creation guide and several overview pages. That's all I expect my players to know—we have a Question and Answer part of our Discord as well as on the forum for the rest, especially if there is confusion or if someone simply doesn't know where to find specific information that is important for their character.

 

To be fair, if folks coming to our site are intimidated by "too much lore," then I can be honest and say our forum probably isn't going to be a good fit for them. If new players aren't excited and/or willing to roll their sleeves up and dig in (as well as contribute!), then they probably won't have as much fun as the players that are. There are so many places to write on the internet, that this doesn't make us elitist or rude—no one approaches The Simarillion without knowing what they're getting themselves into, right?

Edited by Muse

Thorns: Uprising
A Unique Victorian Fantasy Play-by-Post RPG

LORE | FORUM | CHARACTER CENSUS | WANTED ADS | DISCORD

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How much lore is too much for a site?

I struggle so hard with this. I could write BOOKS on lore, but so many are like "TOO MUCH!" and so I scale it back. It's hard though, because then I end up with endless questions that I would have answered in the lore if I felt comfortable going on forever and day. I like writing it, I get so happy when people want to talk about the lore. It's fun to bounce around ideas and change things when fresh ideas are introduced. But it's such a fine line I walk. Currently I'm trying something new, where I have what I consider basic creature lore and then a FAQ section for things that didn't get in. "Are we bipeds or can we half shift?" Easy FAQ material. So I'm giving it a go.


Is it site dependent? In other words, does the amount of lore relate to how intuitive or user-friendly a world or realm is?

From a creating standpoint, I want to give everyone as much information at the start so they can jump in with both feet and have fun. On the other hand, some people don't want to feel bogged down, so I try not to make it overly structured.


Should we expect new members (and old, in some cases) actually read everything? Put in the work to learn the world and build a great character?

Why would we write it if we didn't want it read? Personally, anytime I join a site I read everything. Often I'll have an idea of a character I want to make till I've read everything. By the end, I have completely different ideas, that fit the site better and are fresh and exciting. I certainly hope people feel that with what I write. Also, I think it's a bit rude not to read the lore. It's like you don't care what the site is about, or fitting in it properly. 


Relates to #3: Are those of us with lore-heavy sites expecting too much of new members by having a lore-heavy site?

Sometimes yes, sometimes no. I've been on sites that had just so much, I felt the needed to reread constantly and still was lost. When asking questions about what I read, people were a little condescending. I pray I'm never that. I want people to have fun reading and come to me with questions and ideas. But sometimes we can lost in our own creations I think. It's certainly something to keep in mind!

  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good points!

 

Well, Aereth wound up being very lore-heavy. There are just so many races, species, lands and quite a few nuances to each. However, we do not expect people to read it all and memorize it for posterity. They should read the FAQs, World Knowledge docs and then focus in on the documents pertaining to their character's race. Any further reading - until they are ready to create more characters - is gravy.


Someone somewhere went to sleep and dreamed us all alive.
Dreams get pushed around a lot, and I doubt if we'll survive.
We won't get to wake up, dreams were born to disappear.
And I'm pretty sure that none of us are here.
~ None of Us Here by Jim Stafford ~

 

sagas-button1.png.467e9214ee1a2d2a24c0030301948c27.png   aereth5.png    Smuggler's Blues RPG

 

RPG-Initiative

*your one-stop RPG resource site!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Guidelines and Privacy Policy. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.