Uaithne

 Membership How Important is Roleplay to You?

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How would you describe the importance of roleplay in your life?  What have your experiences been with this?  If roleplaying is just a game, how seriously should one take it?

 

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From the time I was 18 when I discovered roleplaying until a few years ago, RP was life.  I lived and breathed RP, often neglecting IRL duties in order to catch up on things going on with the roleplay world.  After running my Hunger Games site for four years and closing it when I realized I wouldn't be able to continue on with staff duties at the level of intensity required (it had become quite a big site, and I had some RL stuff I signed up for that would prohibit me from running it at this exhaustive level), I took a break from roleplaying.  I never really disappeared since I opened one site (short-term) and poked around at others, but there were months at a time in which I had nothing to do with the roleplay world, and quite some time passed before I made the commitment to return "seriously" with it.

 

Roleplaying is fun, but it's not as much of a "serious" hobby for me as it used to be.  I'm committed to my site, don't get me wrong, and I enjoy it.  But if I had move to a place without internet, I wouldn't waste away to nothing as I might have done once.

 

To me, I enjoy the writing and character creation aspects, but a huge component is the social interaction.  I want to be in a place where I'm comfortable, so that I can hang out and interact with people whose presence I enjoy.  Roleplaying for the sake of roleplaying - going through the motions and making posts and creating characters - isn't something that interests me.  I could write by myself and maybe enjoy it just as much.  But being a part of something bigger, and creating something together is really neat when you're with people who are engaged and interested and on the same page as you.

 

Roleplaying is "just a hobby" to some degree, but it's one that we should be working to improve, even if the improvements are small over time.  I also believe that if someone makes a commitment either to join a site or to run a site, that person should honor the commitment as though it were a real life responsibility: respect other's time, efforts, and interests, and politely bow out if it's not something on which you're willing to follow through.  There's more leniency to it than a real life responsibility, of course, but the people on the other sides of the computer are still people regardless.

 

Anyhow, I'm interested to hear your thoughts and experiences.

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Yeah Roleplay is important to me because writing is my escape and because I enjoy it and it's fun.

 

It obviously has its downside as well and depending on what's going on where you play it can be toxic too, and can easily become an obsession. When I was younger, I would stay up all hours of the night, forgoing sleep to post.

 

I don't let it control my life quite that much anymore, but when I'm not doing it, I definitely miss it, and when I have no posts to do, I'm bored, so I try to keep busy with it.

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I was going through a VERY dark time in my latter years of highschool, and it was being able to completely escape in RPs and writing that really held me steady. 

 

That being said, what I love about RPing, is that its basically a mirror that lets me see into other people and read perspective through "somebody else's eyes" in "real time" rather than a one-sided, structured Social Media post or article/blog entry designed to argue a specific view. RPing is like getting a front row ticket into somebody's brain to learn how they tick. 

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People should be as serious about their hobbies as they want. It's their life, their time, and time is very precious. 

 

I think a part of taking roleplay "too seriously" comes from a stigma, shared by video games or any other "nerdy" pastime as being too juvenile beyond a certain age. This is why I love seeing people defying these arbitrary rules because fuck that, this life is short, time is precious. 

 

The time I draw the line is if the well-being of themselves or others is being neglected or at stake. This includes mental health. Moderation is key. Take it as seriously as you like, but do not cross into extreme fanaticism. I have seen people who treat spreading their site's name as if they were assigned a divine mission. I assume most to be good judges on when to be serious and when not to be.

 

For me: RP is just a hobby. Hobby doesn't have to mean something frivolous. Some of hobbies are "just hobbies" but it shouldn't negate the work put into it or what you gain or can gain from it.

 

It's just that I don't care for the trends, technical terms, or being an expert on RP-related subjects but it doesn't mean that I don't take what I enjoy any less seriously than someone who does. I just happen to not be a very serious person to begin with. But you can still count on me as a member, admin, or friend.

 

2 hours ago, Uaithne said:

 I also believe that if someone makes a commitment either to join a site or to run a site, that person should honor the commitment as though it were a real life responsibility: respect other's time, efforts, and interests, and politely bow out if it's not something on which you're willing to follow through.  There's more leniency to it than a real life responsibility, of course, but the people on the other sides of the computer are still people regardless.

I 100% agree with this.

 

I think part of this is because of views of online interactions, they're still (generally) seen as second to or lesser than real-life, physical interactions, even if this is changing a little. Internet anonymity also doesn't help or apply the same social pressures for accountability (therefore: no repercussions), so "ghosting" is easy. 

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For me roleplay has become steadily less important over the last few years. To the point where I probably shouldn't even call myself a roleplayer anymore. If I had to give an order of importance to it, it falls pretty much under everything else. I'd say I don't really have the desire or drive to roleplay anymore. (I wonder if my desire to write has been burned away amid the rise of social justice...) I haven't really found any sites I'd want to join or plots I want to go through in quite some time.

 

So I've debated a few times now whether or not to leave the roleplay community entirely. I mean I'm usually busy with other things now (whether it's gaming on PC/PS4, working, hanging out with friends, etc... ) and I'm not active on any other roleplays anymore. There's only one other roleplay directory I even visit anymore. So it's not like I'm really engrained in the community so much. 

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Roleplay is a team hobby for me, but never a game. A hobby, exactly how writing is a hobby, and I see them tied closely. Roleplaying means, instead of writing alone, writing with others, building something together, brainstorming together, joining several ideas into a more awesome story than each of us could come to alone.

 

It is very important in my life, because of being a team hobby, vs. writing alone, which is a solitary effort. Having likeminded people to talk with, to share resources, to brainstorm with, to gush for characters and plot twists, to build from their separate ideas a cohesive story, this is the most interesting part.

 

In everything else, I agree with @Uaithne. It is as real as any other team hobby, from playing rummy to a hobby sports team gathering every Saturday afternoon for a match. Commitments are still commitments, and one not meeting his commitments affects the whole team.

 

I agree partially with @Kullervo. Your time (general you) is precious, indeed, but so is the others' time. If you can't do it anymore, remember that you are playing in a team and your absence affects negatively the whole team. Therefore: 1) tell them that you can't do it anymore and 2) find together with them sollutions to allow them continue the story without you.

Edited by Elena
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I quit RP for several years and in those several years my life was overshadowed with a deep seated restlessness and general malcontent. I mistook it for ambition. 

 

Then I started RPing again and holy shit I love writing. I settled down and was much happier. I don't have a great need for community, I'm pretty happy with having a handful of good friends (I do love my friends) and do not need anything more. But the actual writing? Man it makes me happy. 

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Roleplaying matters a lot to me, I'll be honest. Sure, I have to pace myself a lot, because I don't have that much free time to begin with, with work, taking care of the house, resting, eating, doing the solo writing for my blog, etc.

 

But it is a very important hobby, and I value my partners a lot, which's why when I commit, I really do my best to be prompt (within my possibilities) with replies, and put in actual effort to move the story forward and give them something fun to react to. 

 

Still, and I can't stress that enough to my partners, it's not my job. It's a hobby. Which means I do it in my free time. So if my free time in this moment is once a week, I'll give you weekly posts. If my free time right now is once a month, I'll let you know so  you get to decide whether or not it's enough - but I give what I can, not more, not less.

 

I feel that, no matter how important roleplaying is, some people still don't understand that a hobby is something you do when you have the time, and that can vary wildly for different people. And I feel it's important to state that, since that's one of the things that have ruined partnerships for me in the past.

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6 hours ago, VirusZero said:

For me roleplay has become steadily less important over the last few years. To the point where I probably shouldn't even call myself a roleplayer anymore. If I had to give an order of importance to it, it falls pretty much under everything else. I'd say I don't really have the desire or drive to roleplay anymore. (I wonder if my desire to write has been burned away amid the rise of social justice...) I haven't really found any sites I'd want to join or plots I want to go through in quite some time.

 

So I've debated a few times now whether or not to leave the roleplay community entirely. I mean I'm usually busy with other things now (whether it's gaming on PC/PS4, working, hanging out with friends, etc... ) and I'm not active on any other roleplays anymore. There's only one other roleplay directory I even visit anymore. So it's not like I'm really engrained in the community so much. 

 

Massive Burnout?

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Roleplay's always been really important to me.  It's my "main hobby" - most other things I do for leisure are passive, like watching a show or sleeping or something, but roleplay is the only creative, active hobby of mine that I do on a consistent basis.  I love 'Souls and being an admin, and I think of ways to improve the site every day!  At this point, I can't imagine what my life would be like without it.

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Collaborative writing is a very important part of my life, albeit I haven't been focused there as much.  Between physical maladies and stress, I've delighted in genealogy and my Christian walk.  Getting back to role-playing won't be as simple as before.  Age and past experience have both given me an obfuscated "worldview."

Edited by Jacob

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I’ve been thinking about this question a lot. I do enjoy RP tremendously, and I’ve devoted a lot of time to it over the years. When I think about the hobbies in my life that I absolutely could not part with, though, role play is not one of them. Writing is, but collaborative writing is not.

 

I consider it a game, and it’s all about having fun for me. I like the interaction. I like building a different kind of story with combined writing strengths of multiple writers than the kind of story I could write on my own. I don't deliberately focus on self-improvement, because that isn't something I find fun. I also feel uncomfortable when people apologize to me for not doing posts and things like that, because I am definitely not at the level of personal commitment where I feel obligated to do that or bothered when people don't post for me or whatever it is.

 

I personally don't care if people in RP disappear on me without saying anything, but I can see how it's rude. Kind of like making plans to go to the movies or out to lunch with someone, and then not showing up. If I make a commitment, I do try my best to follow through.

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How would you describe the importance of roleplay in your life?  

Incredibly. I've met all of my close friends through role play, it's my only "cooperative" hobby (I play video games, but I hate multiplayer video games). I spend most of my free time working on role play or thinking about it. Everything in my life inspires me, and experiences in the RP have helped me progress in my life.

 

What have your experiences been with this?  

Role play is how I express myself. It's how I work through difficult things.

 

 

If roleplaying is just a game, how seriously should one take it?

Very, and also not at all.

 

What I mean by that, is that I believe that role playing should be for fun. However you have the most fun doing that, do it. If you find an incredibly serious role play with serious characters and serious topics and serious graphics is more enjoyable to you, then do it. If you want to play Sparklefluff McGee, the energetic veela who accidentally got a letter to Hogwarts, with graphics like that one unicorn version of voldemort, then go find your people, and I wish you well, so long as you don't interfere with other people's enjoyment - although the same can be said of serious role players. You have to find a place that suits you.

 

I am the type who wants things in the role play to be serious. I want the characterization to be lifelike, I want there to be consequences. I don't want to encounter half-boggarts, or characters who are just bad for the sake of bad. However, I also laugh at myself and enjoy having plots that are awkward. I have a character named Sechs (yes, it's pronounced how you think), and many of my graphics are shitty MS paint fuckups with funny one liners on them. *shrug* I don't have everyone's style, but I like it the way I like it.

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