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Vacation Character UE
Accelerate Vacay Characters

With a vacation character you're taking it because you want to try something different or explore different RP paths. While I understand that UE != RP I feel like with a vacation character you should at least get the same UE boost as if you were re-rolling, so you're not wasting time just trying to get to a somewhat codedly useful character.

TL;DR

Give vacay characters the same UE boost as Re-Rolls.

I think Vacations as an entire thing need to be redone. You pay a lot of flash to go on one just to start with nothing but struggle. By the time you are even far enough in to matter then your time is up.

So I agree with UE for sure. But here is another cool idea.

Let us Vacation as a midby NPC. Like Ellery of Sarz, or one of the NEO Gaurds. Or anyone that isn't a high caliber NPC. Have that NPC come with some notes and guidelines. Where they live, how they act, etc etc and let the player have fun!

But again. For sure need UE!

While I 100% don' agree with the concept of people playing as NPCs because, let's face it, that would lead to some major continuity issues. I definitely agree that vacationing lacks a certain kind of appeal to it.

You're paying a decent amount (Though not necessarily a LOT) of money to take a break from your main character for one reason or other (Could be burnout, could be to try something new), effectively abandoning what you have spent sometimes years building only to find yourself thrown back to the beginning, without the usual 10% you'd have just rerolling in terms of UE. This can be a detriment because if you're wanting to do it to experience a whole new system or try something else out with a different character, it can take a long time to get into that swing, and if you're doing things for that reason, but intend on going back to your OG character because you have other things to finish on them, then you're effectively setting a brief to mid time limit for yourself.

What I'd suggest is giving Vacation characters a similar amount of UE to what a reroll would have. Perhaps not the full 10% UE, but split it in half. 5% (Or the classic 6) of your accumulated UE, calculated and transferred to your vacation bit before you set yourself up. That way, you'll have a head start and not spend X amount of time getting involved with the new systems you're trying (Some of which may take a genuine amount of time and, while UE =/= RP, it is still a necessity for performing some mechanics)

That's my 2c's worth. I find vacations incredibly lacking in incentive over a straight flush reroll because of this reason.

Bouncing off of Floki's idea, I think it would be neat to have the option to apply to have a vacation character be someone involved in an ongoing storyline. Maybe have that person fulltime-RP a character that would normally be puppeted for a long, ongoing story. And yes, this is me subtly promoting my idea to have foreigners come to Withmore for plotlines and require translator positions in corps. Make sure they know exactly what they need to do, and fully understand the character they would be playing. I think it would not only help free up the overworked staff, but make storylines potentially more interesting and interactable.
I have been in spots where I have considered vacation characters. Every time, the prospect of being sidelined for a couple of months while you get some basics to interact with the world is a prospect that is just hard to swallow. Add too it, when you get to a point that you are good at a thing, or maybe two, you are about done with the character and retiring them.

I would think that vacation characters are the perfect way for people to spice up the world and the power dynamics. Let them start with a substantial amount of UE, more than their 10% (although I don't have an idea what would be a good number, perhaps it's just a set amount, 500? 750?) so that they can hit the ground running and work on plot and not just do a couple of months of social RP while they get decent at something.

Yes, I've seen one, maybe two, vacation character have a viable impact out of the gate. They are the exception and not the norm and usually piloted by very skilled players. Most vacation characters seem to do very little in their first couple months, have a small splash and fade away.

Personally, I would think they are both an opportunity to shake things up and an opportunity to teach players the behavior that GMs would like to see.

We have been told that the player base is often too Risk Adverse. There are plenty of reasons to do so and I won't go into it here. However, letting people step into a character that has some capabilities and limited shelf life would give that player a chance to play differently without the fear of losing years of work. I can only see that as a positive to player perception and behavior.

Secondly, often times players, because of their nature, are loathe to shake things up. There are a number of reasons for this, but time to recovery is a big one. Regardless, a vacation character who starts with enough to make them competent at something would allow players to really come into the gates swinging to try an stir the pot and play conflict between factions who might otherwise be content to mostly ignore each other.

So I can see nothing but good for giving Vacation characters enough UE to make them effective and something to be accounted for.

It's funny that this topic came up because myself and the senior staff were just discussing updates to our vacation policy. There have been some great ideas in this thread, though I don't know that we are ready (or willing in some cases) to action on them at this point.

A few things from posts that I will address:

1. Playing an NPC as a vacation character

This is not going to happen. I think it's a cool idea, and one we've toyed with in other circumstances and may still move forward, but in a very tactical way. The counterpoints to this idea have already been made in the thread and are, I think, very valid.

2. Getting 10% of your characters UE

This is something I will bring up, but we've had this conversation in the past and actively made the choice not to give the 6% UE (back when it was 6%). We will take another look at this and determine if this is something we want to do.

However, given the policy change I'm outlining below, this would be a path to abuse and a way to maximize UE gain if we made it a blanket amount for vacations. So I think it would always have to be tied to the UE someone has earned personally (if we ever decided to do it).

The change we will be implementing is as follows:

You may make a case for extending your characters vacation in 6 month intervals but it remains at the discretion of the GMs to approve this. Should it be denied you have the choice of perming your vacation character and returning to your primary, or converting your vacation character to your primary at the cost of the former primary character which will be reaped.

This is an update from how we previously dealt with situations like this, where after 6 months or so (there was always wiggle room to wrap up plots, etc) you had to make a choice between staying on the vacation forever, or going back to your original character.

The reason we are limiting this to both 6 month intervals and GM discretion is to avoid snap decisions around returning from a vacation character due to IC events, and to ensure people are wrapping up whatever RP they are involved in before returning.

The GM discretion bit is to make sure there is some GM oversight on the process of extending a vacation, and ensure we are having conversations with the player about their vacation / extension / main character and to ensure that players are not 'hiding out' on a vacation character to avoid IC consequences for their primary character. I expect more requests for extensions will be approved without much issue, but it's important that the GMs have some oversight here.