Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Roleplay High Concept Discussion

This occurred on a roleplay site I run and have been for going on 3 years now. (Same plot, setting, ect.) We've got over 100 members and consumes a good deal of my attention at time XD
The smaller text in bold is me. It's a back and forth in private messages.

The Fourteen Warlords Of Animalia
Once all the creatures of the world, evolved to intelligence, lived in peace, in tribes of each type of creature.
But, an odd rumor got around that god had stated 'A union of seven powerful warlords will take over the world'
This, of course, was false.
But, the leaders of seven tribes from each side of the vertabrate line banded together, in an effort to take over the world.
It was not long before each union had taken over their entire side of the line.
Now, each union is preparing for war against eachother.

whaddya think?

What do I think of it in regards to what?
Is it a roleplay high concept?
Is it backstory for your character?
Is it an explanation for a delicious sandwich?

roleplay concept.... IDK 'bout the 'high'
but... yeah

A high concept is what you call something like that.
It means "a rough, overview concept" and normally is only a paragraph or less in length.

I know you don't wanna hear it but it sounds a little cliche. Just go to Barton Town and you'll find 15 with similar concepts. There is no inherent motivated conflict other than "he's in group two and I'm in group one! That bastard!" icon_sweatdrop.gif

Example of Motivated Combat:
"Group A is destitute and needs land for it's booming population, which group B has plenty of but group A's aggressive and militaristic nature ensures that no diplomatic solution can occur."
"Group A has been recently established in a certain location and made it into a holy site for their god but Group B who use to live there holds the same ground as holy. While group A maintains a militaristic but fair use policy of the holy ground- group B's religion has deemed group A to be the ones who will bring about the end of days."

You also want to have conflict off the bat, be it emotional (drama), physical (war for example), or even spiritual (a crisis of morality). It should then have a period of downtime followed by a larger crisis. This excitation of danger (and actually have people fail- that's the good bits! It makes people understand the costs!) and of stakes will make for a compelling roleplay.
Example: If the first conflict was a small skirmish between two forces, then the second might be something like an armed group of young children trying to kill the RPCs. (This is a moral and physical challenge).

In yours you just have a setting- not a scenario. That's well and good if you're writing a D&D campaign setting where people employ their own scenario... but this is a Roleplay. Plan plot out for at least 3 scenario ahead.