Page 518 - Script Revision

18th Nov 2014, 5:00 AM in Luna Eclipsed
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Script Revision
Average Rating: 5 (4 votes)
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 18th Nov 2014, 5:00 AM edit delete
Tabletop roleplaying can be as much direct collaboration as it is simulation or even competition. There are times where getting a pivotal story moment right depends on player resources and DM resources - normally mutually exclusive - being utilized in tandem. The unscripted play and improvisation is much more interesting, but sometimes you need to set something up in advance. Just sometimes.

Notice: Guest comic submissions are open! Guidelines here. Deadline: February 20th.



Venellian 18th Nov 2014, 5:07 AM edit delete reply
Tell a Story about a player setting up a plan with the DM ahead of time!
Digo 18th Nov 2014, 5:34 AM edit delete reply
On a PbP Roleplaying is Magic campaign, our ponies were adventuring through some caves to find a fried that was kidnapped by a trio of meanie teen dragons. We were a bit over our heads taking them on in a straight fight, but we had some brain-power over them.

Anyway, the fight went pretty much as expected-- we were winning, but taking a beating. Unbeknownst to us, one player (The crystal pony) worked in advanced secretly with the GM that he wanted the dragons to break one of his forelegs in a spectacular dramatic fashion before they left. And so the GM did.

Turned into a really good dramatic piece of Roleplaying with us beating the dragons senseless to where they left with some lasting bruises. My earth pony lifted the wounded crystal pony and we got him to the hospital, along with our rescued friend.

The crystal pony lost his foreleg, but he got a really neat automail replacement leg. Just as the player wanted. Not a bad idea.
Leonite 18th Nov 2014, 6:47 AM edit delete reply
Nothing dramatic, but I've got a game I'm starting now where everyone is playing a newly powered up super hero. Everyone that is, except for one. The player who, in the past, played such types as Jackery Bard (who thanks to a lucky critical and the way we play Paranoia, picked up an object with the "Power of Music")

Simply put, this character they're playing is batman with a Harliquin motif. They wanted to play out a few encounters beforehand involving some of their villains.
Leonite 18th Nov 2014, 6:47 AM edit delete reply
Nothing dramatic, but I've got a game I'm starting now where everyone is playing a newly powered up super hero. Everyone that is, except for one. The player who, in the past, played such types as Jackery Bard (who thanks to a lucky critical and the way we play Paranoia, picked up an object with the "Power of Music")

Simply put, this character they're playing is batman with a Harliquin motif. They wanted to play out a few encounters beforehand involving some of their villains.
StoneCliff 18th Nov 2014, 6:54 AM edit delete reply
I plan out nearly all of my characters' stories with my GM. Take my barbarian, Ausk. Ausk was a retired Asterion warlord, who was know for pillaging through the Orc Lands. After finding love, however, he calmed down and focused on raising his family.

Cut to the campaign, where his home was destroyed, and his family killed or kidnapped, by his Elf brother (long story).

Now, Ausk started out as a relatively peaceful person, only fighting when he had to. However, I convinced my gm to give me opportunities to realize how much he missed fighting. By the end, he was angry, rash, and in service of demons. Fortunately the power of love eventually returned him to his neutral good self.
RinaldoLuke 18th Nov 2014, 7:30 AM edit delete reply
I play in a Werewolf: the Apocalypse LARP. My character is a Fostern who basically has made it his mission to annoy/distract a BSD Legend Theurge. It was going really well for a while, but eventually, the Legend managed to find out who my character was. (mostly by torturing members of the sept my character is a member of)

Unbeknownst to most of the PCs, my character has a daughter. Now, he knew that with the resources at her disposal, this Legend BSD would find his daughter very, very quickly. The smart thing for my character to do at this point would be to send his daughter far, far away and not contact her until this is all over. I'd buy off the flaw "Ward" and that'd be that.

But this would be really, really bad story. So instead, I told my storytellers "Come up with some reason that my character can't make the smart play here: I don't care what it is, I'll go along with it." Now my character's daughter has been secreted away by a changeling noble who is basically the nemesis of another PC in the game, and thus the daughter is "closer" without being findable (in theory) by the bad guys. And my character is now indebted to someone who the other PCs actively work against, for secrets that they don't know about. Should lead to great fun. :)

FanOfMostEverything 18th Nov 2014, 7:47 AM edit delete reply
Well, it never came to fruition, but after a few sessions of an Adeptus Evangelion campaign, I informed the Manufactured Berserker that he was a partial clone of Adam.

Yeah, I know, real original. Mind you, I mixed it up a bit by deciding that he was specifically Adam's id, with the ego and superego as other clones in other NERV installations. Eventually, they would have to unite, whether through reconciliation or a fight to the death, and the end result would be Tabris.

Sadly, the campaign sputtered to a halt before we could get that far. He still loved the special plot power I gave him: Fratrivore. If he or his Eva ate an Angel, he could unlock a specific AT Field power for XP purchase. The other players didn't know this, so they just thought he was weirdly obsessed with eating Angels.
Specter 18th Nov 2014, 7:54 AM edit delete reply
In a small DnD game I DMed for, I had to script a players death so they could leave.

To me, it was the most annoying thing I ever had to do, to him, it was awesome, cause now he had every right to go play some dnd with his friends (that were in the same room).

(Story) After the rogue and druid fought Johnny Green Fingers, they took his house, his goods, and reported that another notorious bandit was dead. They went to his house to see what they could find, and found many great things; two of which was an unborn dragon egg, and another was an underground dungeon.

The druid, despite the rogue's warning, touched the egg, and it immediately hatched into the lush green dragon baby (and even to today, I have no idea if green is acid/poison, or something else). The rogue believed the baby was his now since it was in his house... he never understood that since the druid touched the egg, it was hers. So they went into the dungeon where, at that point, the irl rogue's friends invited him to their game of steam punk dnd, where he immediately left.

So there and then, I had to deploy a battle against war forged battle armor, and use the baby dragon to finish off the rogue and robot in acid... there are some scripts that I hate writing.
GrayGriffin 18th Nov 2014, 8:32 AM edit delete reply
In a Pokemon Tabletop united game, one of our players had to leave for military training, and would be away for about a month. Our group was currently hunting for a legendary sword in Mt. Moon, something I believe I've shared some info about already. Anyways, the final guardian of the sword, and the controller of all the other guardians, tuned out to be an undead Lapras that knew the True Perish Song, which would kill anyone who heard it. Anza, the character of the player who was going to leave was a dancer, in both class and backstory, and he had a Lapras of his own. So he released her in an attempt to communicate. And immediately the undead Lapras looks shocked, and then demands that Anza's Lapras join in her song, and for Anza and all his Pokemon to danc along to it. They do so, and once the song comes to an end, mist fills the cavrn, and Anza, his Pokemon, and the undead Lapras have all vanished. Both the other characters with him were extremely traumatized. They did get the sword, though.
Mykin 18th Nov 2014, 9:21 AM edit delete reply
My spellthief is pretty much this. I've told his story before here but I'll add some details that I haven't shared before. He originally was suppose to be a villain for an rpg another friend was running. If memory serves me right, he was going to join the group on the pretense of helping them cleanse the corruption of magic by finding an artifact and having the "chosen one" pour his magic into it. My character, though, knew this would be the point where, if he could kill the chosen one and destroy the artifact, that he would effectively kill off all magic users everywhere. He was one too but he had so gone off the edge that he decided that this was the only way to cleanse the world in his mind.

Sadly, that never panned out as the campaign ended up dying and I ended up reworking that character to the spellthief he is today for another friend, who wanted to have a subplot running for his player to find out. So, he went from quiet and insane to quiet and mysterious. That also failed (surprisingly because the player, who was curious and ALWAYS trying to find out the backstories of EVERY NPC, looked at my dark and mysterious character and said "Meh." before skipping him entirely) but I got more mileage out of him in that role than in his original one.

So I setup one character for two plans: One to be the hidden villain of a game and one to be the plothook for something else that we came up with together. That fact that they both failed miserably might be a sign that I should stop planning with the DM on stuff, but it was just too much fun to set it all up. Kinda like setting up dominoes really.
Bee 18th Nov 2014, 9:26 AM edit delete reply
In a velo city game, I was playing a cute tiny asian girl who wasn't too smart and actually kind of sociopathic and terrifying. She stabbed people, and stuff.

Anyway, I conspired with the GM to throw some fun drama into the party by making them think she had murdered her friend and stashed the body in the basement of the house they were hiding out in. The party sees a bit of a body poking out from some bloody sheets, and the other girl missing. They didn't investigate too closely because they were afraid of tiny sociopathic asian girl and didn't want to set her off. Whenever they asked her where the girl was, she would say something generic that could be misconstrued as "she's dead" but totally innocent with context.

After many sessions of them agonizing about what to do, the "dead" girl shows up again. Tiny sociopathic asian girl had just convinced her to go reconcile with her other friends, and she had left in the middle of the night, while others were sleeping. The body was a mannequin that had already been in the basement. The sheets were actually bloody, but it was cause she accidentally cut herself and used the sheets to stymie the bleeding. She'd just kinda tossed everything in the corner and was blissfully unaware of what everyone else was thinking that she'd done.

Fun times.
Raxon 18th Nov 2014, 12:15 PM edit delete reply
I set up a scene with a DM to establish a very menacing npc, but due to the way I sneakily helped write the npc's backstory and the local lore, it quickly devolved into a who's on first routine. The DM ran with it and managed to make the villain exasperated, but also convinced that this was a place of madness. It must be destroyed, lest the madness spread.

Thus, we created a menacing malcontent that does comedy routines with the crazy population.
Crazy Tom 18th Nov 2014, 2:48 PM edit delete reply
Crazy Tom
I just recently played a game with a good friend of mine who was GMing for his local game society (who are all very, very new to the idea of RPGs). Myself and one other player who I also know very well were playing over the internet, so we weren't in the room with them. Because of this, we were able to do some very interesting things with the game.

The game itself was systemless, entirely RP-based with a few d100 roll-offs whenever there was a conflict. We all had characters in the mid 1920s who had been invited to a mansion in the middle of nowhere for dinner, for various reasons (funnily enough, three separate people claimed to be the Doctor). I was a grizzled old Confederate soldier from the South during the civil war, as my friend the GM had requested beforehand that my character be someone who could lead the party and give them an idea of how it was supposed to go.

However, he has also spoken to my other friend who was gaming online with us about being the owner of the mansion, a vampire intent on turning/killing all his guests. The idea was that I would rally the PCs when we realized that we were in a murder-mansion-mystery type game and try to survive as players were killed off. We traded text messages throughout the campaign, discussing things that happened and how best to respond and such, and it went very well.

Unfortunately for me, when we assigned watch duties for the night, I got put on a shift with the two active vampires in the party (the original and one of the players who had been turned). We had discussed earlier that my friend the vampire wouldn't be allowed to target me until after I'd gotten the players together, so I had temporary plot immunity. We agreed that it had passed, though, so I pretty much knew my goose was cooked when the watch came. But we played it out, with me and the other two playing cards for a bit and drinking and talking quietly. After a bit, they did some sneaky stuff and tag-teamed me, and I got bitten during the struggle. Unfortunately, no one had woken up, so my friend started talking about how I could help him turn the other players when I shouted out in- and out-of-character "YOU'LL NEVER TAKE ME ALIVE!" and shot myself in the head with my pistol, finally waking up the rest of the party.
My friends the GM and the vampire were stunned, and the rest of the party were all shouting at the two vampire players "What happened? How is he dead?" and there was a tense few minutes as they almost found out about the vampires, but since they were so new to RPGs they didn't suspect that one of their own could be the villain, so he got away scot free.

The game went on with more players dying off or turning, and eventually no one survived. :( But at least we all had a good laugh at the end when we revealed the secret to everyone!
Super_Big_Mac 19th Nov 2014, 12:39 AM edit delete reply
A player had Skyped to the rest of us during a regular weekday and asked us for strange, silly things, especially actions and items.

Then, when our group got captured by a group of Berserker/Bard Orcs, four of us were put on a stage, along with a rather large Orc, with all the rest of the Orcs watching from bleachers.

It was Whose Line. specifically, Scenes from a Helm, and Props.

We had to make rolls on pretty much everything.

DM: "You're handed a pair of dull scimitars and two halves of a coconut."

Me: "I take one half shell and put it on my head, with the scimitars held out to the sides."

DM: "Roll for balance. <roll> Okay, now roll for grip, or for perform. <roll>"

Me: "If I sing will this be over?"

Orcs: "No!"

Me: "But look, I'm the fat lady! I sing some opera-sounding junk."

DM: "Roll for performance. <roll> Yeah, you have perfect balance and a great voice. The Orcs start booing."

...Yeah, basically rolling high, or good, was bad. I rolled a Crit Fail on a Charisma check, and that got such a roar of approval from the audience (I'd just basically sung my lines in the Solo Irish Drinking Song in five different Orcish sub-languages, swearing at all of them and their mothers. That's how I got enough 'points' to be tagged out with another party member.)
Digo 19th Nov 2014, 6:38 AM edit delete reply
Getting put on Who's line? Yeah, that does sound like fun. :D I should remember that one.
Anonymous User 1337 19th Nov 2014, 8:20 PM edit delete reply
Player setting something up with the DM? I got something from the broken campaign.
So I was an eladrin wizard in the slightly 1e world, meaning no metal armor or normal weapons, but with some smooth talking I was able to convince the DM to let me have a longsword that I could use as an implement.
Fast forward 1 combat encounter and burning hands and shocking grasp are no longer useless.
Truly Mad Moves 18th Nov 2014, 5:25 AM edit delete reply
Truly Mad Moves
Hey, it's me - "Guest" from the previous strip. You guys have convinced me to get myself a name and start taking part in discussions.

Sadly, I have nothing to offer at story time. I've been a DM for many years, but regrettably, gaming situations like those described in this and other webcomics just seem... out of reach for me. I have zero imagination, less than zero ability to improvise, and everybody I've ever played with is pretty much the same way. Basically, we kill, loot, and powergame and that's it. Or we would, if I was any good at doing encounters or treasure or equipment...

Oh, we've had a few REAL gamers at our table, but they're so out of place that even the least-dedicated of roleplayers comes across as the looniest of loonies when sitting next to us. Someone comes to the table with a character whose traits aren't lifted directly from the book, we're as thrown for a loop as if Mr. Welch came blazing in with his accordion and paving machine. And a person who's capable of actually holding a conversation in-character? That's practically grounds to be kicked out as a disruptive player. "Guy who talks to NPCs"? That's our equivalent to a normal gaming group's "guy who shoots the king in the face".

So, I suck, my gaming group sucks, but if I ever see ANYTHING that I can relate to, I'll be sure to speak up...
Disloyal Subject 18th Nov 2014, 5:32 AM Wilkommen, Truly Mad Moves edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
Well, uh... Plenty of room for improvement?
Welcome to our merry little corner of the internet; enjoy your stay!
Truly Mad Moves 18th Nov 2014, 5:35 AM edit delete reply
Truly Mad Moves
Well, I'd love some *lessons* on how to improve, 'cause I'm clearly getting nowhere with the self-taught thing. Thanks for the welcome. :)
o11c 21st Nov 2014, 10:21 PM advice edit delete reply
I've never GM'ed and I've only played in one campaign, but there was one thing that *immediately* jumped out when I actually started playing, compared to what I imagined:

It's not about the dice at *all*. In a typical session, we would probably only roll once or twice, everything else was just choice of words. This is one of those things that is only *possible* because there's a human running the game instead of a computer.
Digo 18th Nov 2014, 5:35 AM edit delete reply
I've been a DM/GM for over a decade and I can tell you that I didn't become as good as I am overnight. You keep working at the craft and you will improve. :)

Dragonflight 18th Nov 2014, 5:44 AM edit delete reply
Well, one suggestion I have is just to keep your ears open while you GM. If you put a situation out that the PC's are trying to resolve, they'll often start tossing ideas around to see which one is the likely one. Now, you probably have a general idea already. But if you hear parts that sound really cool, you could add bits of their suggestions to the scenario. This does two things. First, it adds to the "wow" factor. Second, when they encounter the situation and realize they've guessed at least partly "right", they're going to feel really good for having guess the plotline.

As for the Monty Haul style of gaming? I'd recommend you encourage your group to actually roleplay if possible. If not, you might consider swapping out players for a group that actually plays characters. The gaming group I've been with for over 15 years now is the kind that would rather roleplay than get into combat. We had a 3-session uber combat last month, and the players were starting to complain that it was getting in the way of their roleplaying. You *want* groups like that. By contrast, I've occasionally gamed with munchkin gamers, and I usually drift out of their game in a few sessions. But that other group? 15 years, and well over a dozen games in half a dozen different game systems.
Truly Mad Moves 18th Nov 2014, 5:47 AM edit delete reply
Truly Mad Moves
Heh, I'd love to keep my ears open and encourage roleplaying, but none of my players have any ideas either. And if they did.... I wouldn't be able to deal with it. I'd freeze up. I can't improvise to save my life.
Dragonflight 18th Nov 2014, 5:49 AM edit delete reply
One suggestion I might have for getting power gamers to roleplay more (maybe without their even realizing they're doing it,) is to set up logic puzzle challenges that are disguised as conversation. Or to pull a concept from the Legend of Five Rings RPG system, introduce "Social Combat." The idea is to win through the power of persuasion and presentation, instead of cold steel.

A way to present it to powergamers that might take is the example of Megamind in the movie of the same name. "There's a difference between a villain and a SUPER-villain... Presen-TA-tion!" See if you can rope them in with some glitz and a situation which cannot be resolved by killing things, but CAN be resolved by solving the social puzzle.
Truly Mad Moves 18th Nov 2014, 5:55 AM edit delete reply
Truly Mad Moves
Well, maybe powergamer isn't the right term. See, everyone I play with... everything they know about gaming, they learned from me. So they don't know there's more to it than combat, because I have no ability to deviate from a script... how do I learn that? I used to be able to do that. I used to be clever. I used to be the breakout star of an improv group, for crying out loud. I don't know where that went, but that loss completely kills the gaming experience. How do I learn how to roleplay?
Truly Mad Moves 18th Nov 2014, 5:56 AM edit delete reply
Truly Mad Moves
And... sorry I'm whining, it's just that gaming is really important to me, and reading comics like this one made me realize that there could be so much more to it if I could just figure out how.
Crystalite 18th Nov 2014, 6:18 AM edit delete reply
@Truly Mad: My suggestion is to find some online games, maybe Play-by-Post or ideally a Skype group, and practice roleplaying. As a player, I have found that there is a sort of "script": you just have to learn to read it of your other player's reactions. The main thing to ask yourself is "What makes an interesting story?"

As a GM, I don't have a "script": I have a situation. I put the players into that situation, and then I see what happens. The main thing here is to keep your players guessing: and the when one of the guesses sounds interesting, roll with it.
FeelsGuest 18th Nov 2014, 6:38 AM edit delete reply
Also don't be afraid to talk to them. You're supposed to have fun too. Tell them you would like to focus less on pure combat. Run the game you want to run, you are the author and referee.
kriss1989 19th Nov 2014, 7:09 AM edit delete reply
I would like to recommend a very useful book. Never Unprepared: The Complete Game Master's Guide to Session Prep. It not only teaches you how to do prep work for a session in less than an hour, it also teaches you how to "cheat" at improvisation in the context of a game.
FeelsGuest 18th Nov 2014, 6:18 AM edit delete reply
Also if your party ever goes kill crazy a reality check may be needed. Recently my group had been getting a little too bloodthirsty and the DM presented a scenario where someone called the paladin a bad name. To my group this justified killing the uppity talking bag of xp/gold because we're the main characters and the game world obviously revolves around us in all aspects.

In 1.5 turns the entire party except the other rogue and I were down (I saw what was coming and left the bar) The paladin who started the fight using the excuse of defending his honor was dead and the party is now broke after we had to bribe the four lvl 10 assassins (we're lvl 3) to not kill the rest. I have never seen a group of players leave so humbled and realizing we are not the biggest fish in the pond. And there were signs but since my group usually ignores and talks over the DM when he's trying to do "That boring/stupid plot and rp stuff" they didn't see any of the flags.
RinaldoLuke 18th Nov 2014, 7:43 AM edit delete reply
Tricks I know for overcoming this:

1) Come up with problems that can't be dealt with by killing things. This can be anything from the "We need the treasure from the dragon who is about 10+ ECL above our characters right now." to "The king's heir is a bad guy, but if we kill him then the whole kingdom will turn on us!"
2) Steal from TV and movies. Seriously, it only takes *minor* edits to turn something you watched on TV last week into something no one recognizes as stolen. This is especially cool if you know of shows that your players aren't watching.
3) Go to other tables as a player, if possible. Getting away from your group and trying to play with others can really help broaden your horizons. Campaign play is better than one-shots, so try for that if you can.
4) Make NPCs friendly. There is this tendency some people have when they start giving NPCs personality to make them adversarial to the PCs. Don't do that: make people friendly to your PCs or willing to help them out, and your PCs will be more inclined to talk.
5) Design NPCs that fit into the PCs backgrounds. Again, try to make this positive. If someone hasn't really fleshed out their background, add things that could help. Say the PCs need passage on a ship. Look at one of your players and go "You know that you have a brother who is a bosun on (this ship) and that it is due to dock in (city) sometime soon. If you head there, you might be able to catch him." (I have never had a PC with no character background turn down this sort of thing.)
6) For PCs who do have a background, even a small one, work it into the story. They went to a college for magic? Have an old classmate ask for help. They were in the army? Have the guard they need to get past be a member of their old platoon. They come from a small town? Place a dungeon so it would be easiest if they stopped by. It doesn't take much, I find. (Especially if you have established that many NPCs are friendly/helpful)
Specter 18th Nov 2014, 8:08 AM edit delete reply
I don't have too much on the subject of "teaching", especially since I am a terrible example in everything I do, but I can say I, for example, have gotten plot hooks (and plotted, it was a two way streak for Dm's and adventurers) from some good movies and books. Now, I'm not saying it's a good idea to base any adventure around any one thing (I was able to see that mistake without actually doing it), but instead using a little of and a little of that, mix in your own thoughts and opinions for a better familiarity for the game at hand, and suddenly you've got stuff to do, things to see, and a whole lot of names to come up with.

(Just between you and I, and everyone else who bothers to read this, if the pc's demand a name from an npc, whether they allies or enemies or neutral, a named character becomes that much better. It might seem cruel, but it helps when the pc's ask for names from people they think they're going to run into for a while).

Now, I have plenty of good examples of inspiration for settings, encounters, and interesting things that can be added for flare, but I have always wanted to do this one.
Raxon 18th Nov 2014, 12:08 PM edit delete reply
My favorite named theme character is probably Harm. He spoke in third person. "You are in harm's way. Harm will find you now."
Mykin 18th Nov 2014, 8:57 AM edit delete reply
Oh yey! I didn't scare you away! Welcome to the group and don't mind the mess...we're still cleaning up after our little mishap with the postal service.

I don't really have anything to add to the whole DM problem you have there, mostly because I tend to freeze up when I have to make up stuff on the spot. But I did notice something that I would like to address that might help you out.

"I have zero imagination, less than zero ability to improvise, and everybody I've ever played with is pretty much the same way."

"So, I suck, my gaming group sucks-"

"sorry I'm whining-"

Stop that. Stop apologizing and stop being negative. We've all asked our fair share of questions here so your fine. This might sound odd coming from me (especially to those that have read my posts before I changed them), but you'll never really be able to change if you have that attitude about you. I used to think that way...heck I still fall into that from time to time (as yesterday's storytime used to show.) Saying that you suck and that you can't do anything constantly will end up making that true in your mind. When that happens, changing the things you don't like will get harder because you've lost the self-confidence to actually put in the effort to change them. Your group isn't doomed, its just different. If it helps, your group sounds a lot like the groups I used to run with when I was growing up, so I have an idea of where your coming from. Still, there are chances to get roleplay in. In my Wednesday group, our roleplay moments happen as part of combat or as a reaction to bad dice rolls. Heck, we decided my character was terrified of wasps when he rolled a 4 on a climbing check and my DM decided that I had tossed one of the loose rocks I was holding on to into a wasp's nest and that's how my character finally got the "proper" motivation to stop sucking and finish the climb. This is pretty much our experience in a nutshell. Outside of whatever story we made inside our heads (I've shared mine here actually,) we don't have too many grand set piece moments and epic battle with bosses. And you know what? That's fine. We still enjoy ourselves and that's what matters in the end. I just find myself wondering if you've fallen into the same trap I did a while ago of setting the bar of what is acceptable roleplay so high that the mere thought of it drives you into a depression. I'm not saying that you should give up with trying to get your group to roleplay more. I'm just saying there are different kinds of roleplay out there and you shouldn't set your heart on an "ideal" kind of roleplay.

"I used to be clever. I used to be the breakout star of an improv group, for crying out loud."

I think you still are. You just need to get your confidence back and figure out how to incorporate that into your game. If you take the lead, I'm pretty sure everyone else will try to follow here. Will it be the easiest thing in the world? Probably not. But it's still worth trying.

Again, I'm no expert in DMing or even in roleplaying. This is just my thoughts on the matter. Everyone else here has more experience on this than I do and I think I've become a better player by listening to what they've said, so I recommend listening to what they suggest and trying them out. And keep in mind that all of this might not work right off the bat and it'll take effort to get it to work. Just keep calm and flutter on...err, I mean don't be hard on yourself and keep your chin up. You'll get there eventually.

And again, welcome to the group.
Raxon 18th Nov 2014, 2:00 PM edit delete reply
I've got the yaoi paddle to help encourage everyone to get motivated.

The paddlings will continue until morale improves.
Dragonflight 18th Nov 2014, 2:19 PM edit delete reply
I think the suggestion about going to other games is a good one. The best way sometimes to get your own storytelling skills going is to experience it in action elsewhere.

As for experience gaming in a non-combat situation, what about a forum RPG, or skype-style game? Similar to what Newbiespud is running himself? It seems to me that a MLP game is less about combat and more about relationships and conversation. Makes me wonder actually if I missed a train by not applying for his game, now that I think about it. :)
Dragonflight 18th Nov 2014, 2:22 PM edit delete reply
There's a part of me that always wants to push new horizons, which is why I always try new story ideas and game concepts. Suddenly I'm wondering if I could run a MLP game successfully or not... Hmm... Forum? I've never tried real-time online alternatives, but I may be too busy. Not sure. Something to think about.
Mykin 19th Nov 2014, 1:06 PM edit delete reply
Well if you do do that, let me know. I might join you in that. Always looking for something new to try out.
Disloyal Subject 19th Nov 2014, 5:29 PM edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
I may as well give notice of interest too... I desperately need practice at noncombat RP of a relatively sane character.
Crazy Tom 18th Nov 2014, 2:26 PM edit delete reply
Crazy Tom
There's lots of good advice here, I'd recommend trying a little bit of everything.
I'll also throw my hat in the ring: the way I got better at improvising a lot of my games was by baby steps. My first game I DMed was something of a flow chart; the players could do A or B. From there, they could choose 1 or 2 later on if they'd gone with A, or 3 or 4 if they'd chosen B. Then, at the end, there was one final Yes/No choice. Each choice was a semi-roleplaying event where the PCs basically deliberated about the choice in and out of character, and in between each choice was a fight and some exploring. Gently remind the players to think about what their characters would do in this situation; if there is trouble here, have the players play characters that are similar to them with one or two key differences, to give them some experience.
As for the DM side, try to come up with some NPCs for the players to interact with at the decision junctures. Do they spare the villain at the end? Maybe he should be awake and listening while they deliberate, and beg them for his life while telling the players about his wife and children.
The idea is to gradually add more options and more RP-heavy events to the flowchart as you go, eventually just adding events on the fly like an improv master.

Hopefully this helps you. :)
Raxon 18th Nov 2014, 7:44 PM edit delete reply
Or we could just use the yaoi paddles.
Blueblade 19th Nov 2014, 5:02 PM edit delete reply
Welcome to the comments section of friendship is dragons where... Stuff happens. Prepare your but for the laughs that await you in both the comic and the comments unless you like buying new pants and looking for you butt in the woods due to you laughing it off so hard.
Disloyal Subject 19th Nov 2014, 5:32 PM Stale, Month-Old Pumpkin Cake edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
Luckily, butts seldom think to check for traps, so they never get far enough fr retrieval to be an issue. mind is in a strange place. Just how old was that cake??
Blueblade 21st Nov 2014, 2:11 PM edit delete reply
Let me ask Glad0s.... HEY GLAD0S HOW OLD WAS THAT CAKE?... OK!... She said the cake is actually a lie so she has no clue how old it is so I can't help you there... Wait a minute... What is Glad0s doing here?
Curb 18th Nov 2014, 8:59 AM edit delete reply
Oh, A storytime I do have some stories about.

During a recent test of the ever changing Tales of Equestria, one of the players wanted to try out a new Caste(race) I was working on but hadn't finalized for the tests yet. After some discussion, the group got a new member for the time being, a Fallen Unicorn Psi Warrior named Constance.

They wern't sure what to make of the jet black unicorn with slightly curved horn and short white mane and tail, but luckily for all of us, the player was really good at RP and talked her way into the group. So far, having an insanily powerful psionic with psi powered weapons and armor has made the party very happy, so far...

The Fallen are Unicorns who were affected by a failed spell cast by a mad unicorn that devastated their land. Fallen are rolled up as normal but a D6 roll determines weather they are unpowered, magic or psionic.
Curb 18th Nov 2014, 9:06 AM edit delete reply
One, one about me as a player

During my first Rifts campaign, I was playing a young female mystic who would later be the inspiration for my favorite NPC Misery Nightshade.

Anyways, I got with the GM to discuss her choice of appearance and hardware, going weapon heavy with a mystic seemed to appeal to him (as this was before the Combat Mage was introduced, love those guys) as was the fact that I wanted to keep her spell capacity on the down low until it was needed.

Soo in our first campaign, the group initially thought I was just some weird little mercenary chick who wore only armored vests and armored long coats, especially when we went into a saloon and had to turn over our weapons, she had half a dozen guns of varying damage capacity on her, as well as a number of knives and some weighted chain.

When the always required bar fight broke out, the others tried to fight their way to the weapons locker, only to see her stand her ground and start throwing spells around, the look on their faces was priceless.
that guy 18th Nov 2014, 9:27 AM edit delete reply
Sorry Luna, the official slapping of the royal ass was done away with centuries ago.
Specter 18th Nov 2014, 10:03 AM edit delete reply

Your name, I should have read your name before reading your comment. Well played either way my friend... Although, in hindsight, such a tradition sounds somewhat appealing (depending on if you give/receive, and on who you are)...

*Facehoof* Sometimes I hate my brain.
Guest 18th Nov 2014, 10:32 AM edit delete reply
All of my character backstories. Ever.

I hang so many plot hooks on my characters they start to look like velcro. Besides that, I have ideas sometimes, so I like to collaborate with the DM if I have a really cool sequence in mind to see if it can happen. I'm also perfectly happy to sell my characters to the Plot Device, so if something needs to happen to someone, my character's usually a go-to. Not because I don't care about my characters, but because I care even more about the story. For instance, that one time we planned ahead for my character to be captured by a demon-worshipping cult and made into a host for a demon lord. ...That would've been a lot better had it worked.
Freelance 18th Nov 2014, 12:32 PM edit delete reply
Oh, Twi's character, we all know your specialty is to derail the DM's storylines and end them five sessions short.
Disloyal Subject 18th Nov 2014, 4:27 PM edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
That's the joke.
Freelance 19th Nov 2014, 2:56 AM edit delete reply
We'll see how she does when the rails have turned into off-road driving.
Mykin 18th Nov 2014, 8:08 PM edit delete reply
It wouldn't be a proper representation of a roleplaying game if that wasn't the case.
Blueblade 19th Nov 2014, 5:16 PM edit delete reply
We all know in the comic despite what the DM says twilight isn't the element of magic... She is the element of derailing!
Disloyal Subject 19th Nov 2014, 5:35 PM edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
My Little Minmaxer: Derailing is Magic!

Wasn't there a Don't Rest Your Head character whose sole power was summoning trains out of nowhere, Dominic Cobb-style?
Blueblade 20th Nov 2014, 5:23 PM edit delete reply
He likes trains despite the fact they run him over whenever he says so.
Guest 19th Nov 2014, 8:06 PM edit delete reply
Not technically worked out before hand but, one game of Legend of the 5 Rings I had a bad habit of getting my characters dead. I have more dead characters from that game then all the other players combined.
So one death happened on the wrong side of The Wall, for those that don't know the setting, well just like any fantasy setting with a Wall its practically hell on the wrong side. I came up with a good reason for my new character to be on the wrong side all alone and he met the party, and not one of them poked him with jade or cast anything resembling detect evil. So after the session the GM calls me up and says "so its not that I don't like the backstory you came up with, but they need to learn better than to just trust random people they meet in the shadowlands. You want to play an infiltrator demon?" So together we rewrote my character sheet. I played that demon for longer than half my other characters, didn't get found out until they took me back across the Wall and into the audience chamber of a Seppun(very high ranking family) and even then I only got discovered because Seppuns have a passive detect evil going on at all times.
Yellow 13 15th May 2016, 11:17 AM edit delete reply
In an animorphs based RP, my character is not only fighting against the yeerks, but she is also a controller at the same time. As such, she would have to keep both sides of her nature hidden from both sides. Who knows how her allies would react to that bombshells and the yeerks would want to kill her.