Page 22 - Meta-Roleplaying

27th Sep 2011, 6:00 AM
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 27th Sep 2011, 6:00 AM edit delete
Today's comic is about balancing out-of-character and in-character knowledge. Twilight's player is just beginning to learn the finer points of this essential roleplaying practice.


Chris 27th Sep 2011, 8:30 AM edit delete reply
Gah, I hate trying to game with people like Twilight. You have to do everything via DM notes and making the other players leave the room and crap because one player doesn't get the difference between in-character and out-of-character knowledge.

At least Twilight's got the excuse that she's new to this whole 'roleplaying' thing. I've gamed with plenty of people experienced enough to know better who were just as bad about this sort of meta-knowledge tomfoolery. One that leaps to mind was when the party thief found a secret compartment which contained a few diamonds and palmed them before calling the rest of the group over. IMMEDIATELY one of the fighters begins asking if he saw the thief take the diamonds, if the thief is acting suspicious, if his moneypouch is hanging a little lower than it was a minute ago, if he caught a glint of something out of the corner of his eye (said fighter was in another room at the time, mind you), and just generally being an unbelievable dick. When I (the DM) finally got him to realize that I wasn't going to let him act on his OOC knowledge like that, he backed off... until that night during his watch. Then, he announced that he needed some magical healing (which was true), and was going to go through the thief's bags to see if he had any healing potions. And while he was digging around in the thief's stuff, he might as well check the money pouch, just to make sure the thief hadn't been skimming any gems without telling the rest of the party...

Needless to say, fighter didn't get invited to too many more sessions after that.
UnfairAdvantage 7th Dec 2011, 6:47 PM edit delete reply
And THAT is why I require lit/chatroom roleplay experience to be had by new players. That way, they're more likely to understand these things. Apparently, even non-geeks roleplay with their friends online. (not that I would know. Most of my friends are geeks along with me)
Aurabolt 27th Sep 2011, 9:18 AM edit delete reply
To be honest, I do understand why this pisses people off with experienced role-players, but we're not always in the mindset to remember. Twilight's player is just starting, and I'm impressed with her capabilities so far.

And to be honest, this is probably going to be a simple and laid-back game for the most part, to give her time for her and Fluttershy to learn.
MintJelly 27th Sep 2011, 10:55 PM edit delete reply
Its obvious that Twilight's player is newer to the game. All new players have issues with keeping personal knowledge and character knowledge separate. Heck even some vets do too... it just takes practice.
Thud 27th Sep 2011, 9:22 AM edit delete reply
Well ok the fighter was probably being a dick here, but I've always wondered how you discipline players like the rogue who abuse in-character vs. OOC knowledge. How does one solve the problem of a thief like that?
kriss1989 27th Sep 2011, 9:44 AM edit delete reply
Punish them with the same trick. Make your character suspicious of them on the grounds that 'they are a professional thief, of course I'm going to be leery of them.' And if they do get away with it a few times, let them. Then, when they get caught, be justified in not trusting them from then on. After all, just because YOU know they are telling the truth doesn't mean your character does, and your character has plenty of reasons to suspect them. Make your character demand an apology, their cut, etc. Have them insist the rouge turn out their pockets after scouting a place and finding it 'empty'. Even though you as a player know its true, your character has been burned this way before.
Wild Heart 27th Sep 2011, 9:57 AM edit delete reply
Not that simple. For example, what if he lied in the first place? What if your character doesn't know he's a Rogue? What if he thinks he's a Monk or something?

Remember also that game terms aren't always used in-character. After all, not every thief is a Rogue, and a rogue is a title in-character, not a class.