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Answered Canon NPCs

Discussion in 'Questions & Suggestions' started by Dharke, Dec 23, 2017.

  1. Dharke

    Dharke Join me in Coosa!

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    I have a suggestion, although I understand if you respond with a flat out no, because it causes too many headaches and complications. ;)

    All players are allowed to have an NPC account on the forum, which is linked to their other accounts. They could have x amount of NPCs (maybe three to match the three free characters) that are canons from books, films, shows, etc. In order to claim a canon NPC, a player would have to post up a (lightweight) app and have to get it approved in the usual fashion. To keep their NPC account, they would have to make three IC posts a month, regardless of whether they had one, two or three NPC canons.

    Pros
    • A way for players to "demo" a character, before deciding whether they really want to give them a dedicated character account. This would hopefully lead to people dropping characters less frequently.
    • A possibility that it might relieve some of the issues discussed in these threads: 1 and 2, because players will be focusing more on their favourite characters and using their NPC accounts sparingly, in theory. On the other hand, it might exacerbate these issues and be open to exploitation if the NPC account has looser activity requirements.
    • NPCs to fill roles in jobs and plots. For example, I would love to role-play Kemp as an anti-supernatural figure in one of Sabine's plots, but outside this plot, I have no desire to play him.

    Cons
    • It gives staff more work when it comes to approving characters and checking activity, although the latter sounds like it wouldn't cause any issues once the new activity check system is in place.
    • Adding an extra layer of complexity to a site that's already established and rich with OOC information.
    • The possibility that people would have no interest in using this system. I've tried this on another forum in the past, but only a couple of people used it. Then again, the community was nowhere near as big as this one.

    But the biggest drawback of all is making a character an NPC who another player might like to play on the board.

    Some solutions around this might be:
    • Limiting characters who you can make canon NPCs, e.g. characters who only have five minutes of screen time in a film or show, characters from obscure or retired fandoms, etc. It would probably cause staff headaches deciding how to work out a consistent guideline to follow, though.
    • Allowing players to take any NPC canon, providing they're aware that they'd have to relinquish them if somebody wanted to play them. There's the potential of this causing drama, perhaps resolved by having the player submit a "declaration" when apping an NPC canon (e.g. "I understand that this character can be taken from me at any time"). However, this still does not stop a player (especially a new player) from potentially feeling uncomfortable about taking an NPC canon from another player.

    That's all I can think of for now! Feel free to chip in with ideas if you reckon this has potential!
     
    #1 Dharke, Dec 23, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2017
  2. Steel

    Steel as horizons end, ever to descend
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    Hey there, Dharke!

    While it's clear that you put a lot of thought into this, we're going to have to say no for the following reasons.

    Opening up the option for players to roleplay canon characters as side characters, or NPCs, defeats the purpose of having limits on fandoms and characters in the first place. Even if it's just for plot purposes and testing out characters, treating them in a similar fashion as regular character accounts -- with apps and posting requirements -- does indeed add an additional layer of complexity, like you already mentioned. Sadly, players will apply for and drop characters with or without us providing them with an option to test drive them. We all tend to get excited over characters, and then realize that we probably jumped the gun when it came to roleplaying them!

    As for using NPCs in threads for plot purposes, our policy is for players to come up something themselves, as opposed to using a pre-existing canon character. After all, as long as the character exists, someone may eventually want to roleplay them in the future. Besides, we have an NPC account for those who wish to use NPCs in plot-related threads, which our players can request access to at any time. Granting each player an NPC account, especially when we have over a hundred members, would be unnecessarily complex.

    Thanks a lot for the suggestion, however! If you have any other questions, suggestions or concerns, don't hesitate to let us know. Happy holidays!

    Pandora Staff
     
  3. Dharke

    Dharke Join me in Coosa!

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    @Steel:

    Thanks for the prompt reply.

    No rush to go there now (with Christmas on the horizon!), but could I point you towards the Morhall thread in Private Questions? Thanks very much. :)