Legends of Belariath

Separating IC and OOC

I think its time we all sat down and had a long discussion on what WE the admin/ops consider IC or In Character and what's OOC or Out of Character. Let's use terminology for those that are new so we don't lose them.

IC - In character: You are playing your character. Your character walks into the Inn, orders a drink, the Troll spits in your mug, wipes it clean and fills it up with ale. You eye up the mug and then the troll. You have a choice, in character... Do you A: Insult the blasted troll for spitting in your mug. That's disgusting! Now you can see Troll spit swirling around in your ale suds. Gross! OR you can B: Shrug your shoulders and drink it down. Everybody else is.

You chose A: And eye up the troll, stand up on your stool and dump the contents of ale and spit atop the Trolls head! He obviously, being a troll and all, doesn't get why you just dumped that on his head and picks up the nearest available weapon... likely his big ham fist! And whaps you atop the head. *BAM* OWIE!!!! You rub your head, get that look in your eye and unsheathe your brand new sword! Now that troll is in trouble! Thunk you on the head will he! You jab, slash, maneuver your way around that bar area and turn the troll into living hamburger! Take that you troll! The Troll whaps you several more times! *biff* *bap!* You end up a squashed looking customer... Ooops.... Well, guess that was a bad idea!

In OOC - Out of Character - You A: Take it like a man! Good fight Troll guy! I really enjoyed it, what a way to pick up my afternoon. Thanks! Healer?! Medic!?! Anyone playing their healer right now? Awww shit... no one? Ok... cool. I'm gonna have my character just go lay over by a bench for a while. OR you B: In OOC.. start ranting.. What the F! Dude! I can't believe you did that to me!?! I mean, do you know how long I've been playing here? Like... years. You bullied me into that! It's hardly fair that you're a level 18 and I'm level 5! Look what you did to me, now there's no healers on and I'm fucked for playing the rest of the afternoon. Thanks a lot you asshole!

A: Is correct in out of character response.

B: is NOT correct in out of character response.

Why is A and not B? Good question. We all invest a lot of time into our characters. We buy them armor. Weapons. Slaves. Clothes. Houses. Land. Horses. Toys. We invest a solid two or three years and they have a personality. A way of doing things you'd never do but your character sure has the moxy to carry it through! You can strut around, waving that +5 Dragon Bane killer of Pixie dusted smallness and people FEAR YOU! Yeah.. mauahahaha *rub hands ebilly here!* Ok... cool.. Don't we ALL love that feeling? Hell yeah we do. I mean.. You can go somewhere, anywhere and be recognized. Known. Feared. Loathed. Loved. And it's really a part of you since you've invested so much time and energy and you've told your story! That's the most important part in all this... Its YOUR story. Your character is acting out the story that you weave and that others weave around you. However, the most important thing I can tell you is that, above all if someone insults your character. Beats your character. Doesn't buy your character chocolates from Chocolates to Cherish. Doesn't buy you flowers. Or milk. Or a horse or simply won't become your lover.... this is happening all according to others stories. Stories they've worked on, weaved, spent time on. You aren't the only character out there and if you were? You'd be one lonely son of a gun!

So, because you aren't the only one out there, and because others play their characters according to the way they see fit and others see fit and still others and then there's the laws governing In Character reactions and actions and the Empire and the Imperial Guard and maybe your boss... all In Character. Everyone has to adjust their characters lives accordingly. So. Ok. We've established you aren't the only one on the face of the Empire's planet. You aren't the only one struggling, working, farming, raising, walking, and swinging a sword. Just like out of character when you walk out your door to go to your work place, your home, see your wife your husband or go to church. You don't explode on the person next to you and ream them for stepping on your favorite flower outside!!! That bully! Wait... What!!? Ok. Now we are getting somewhere. In our Real Lives we have rules to follow. Governments to understand. Oh, we can protest! We can wave little anti-bully shirts about and wear coats with glittery sayings on the back like; Bush! Shave it today before it overruns! Sure we can. BUT if we take a gun or a sword out of nowhere and charge said President... we are going to jail! We understand that! Our actions cause a reaction and all the guff and bravado in the world isn't going to save us from a swift jury or judge shoving us into a small 4x4 room.

So in Character... This reflects the things that govern us in our real lives. These characters are merely reacting to your character. To their laws they uphold or the Gods they follow. Taking that OUT of character and shaking them about on how dare they do that to YOU... you.. not your character.. you.. Whoa... wait.. You aren't your character. You are NOT... If someone calls your character a heifer IC... Stop and think... IS he? Maybe. Is he an asshole/bitch/jerkoff IC? Probably... but is the PERSON behind the character an asshole/bitch/jerkoff? Probably not. He's playing out a fantasy. She's having some fun. Lord knows we really don't have Trolls in the Real world. We don't go about swinging swords either unless its for entertainment purposes and you just paid a ticket for that!

Now that we've established reality from fantasy. I want you all to go and play, remember that anything that happens to YOUR CHARACTER isn't you. No one is really calling you an asshole. No one is really lobbing your head off. Or sending a lightning bolt up your ass or stealing your slave. They are doing it to your character. It's a story. And like all stories if it really gets to you that badly? Close the book. Set it down. Come back to it in a few days with a more clear view of why this might have upset you. This story can't govern your life, and if it is? Then reading a story or being in one is not for you. So its time to put the book away and find something else to do.