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Being Successful on Sindome
What the GMs pay attention to

This is another recap of some things I said on OOC-Chat that I think are important for discussion with everyone.

For simplicity sake, let's put every player in one of three groups.

Group A: The Takers AKA The MeMeMe's

This player signs in and treats the game like it's single player. Everyone is here to entertain them, especially the GMs. They do little to give back to the game ICly, and their RP is usually pretty selfish. They don't create RP so much as are a void for it. RP goes in, but nothing every comes out. The more you give, the more they want.

Group B: The Uninitiated / The Part-timer

This player is new to the game or only plays part time. They get involved with some plots and generate some RP but more often than not there are big gaps in their play schedule so their RP stays close to the surface. That's OK, they play when they can and do what they can to contribute to the community.

Group C: The Giver AKA The Lifer

Role play circles around this player like a gathering storm. They always have some plot they are involved in, machination they are working on or job that needs doing. You might call them a player GM-- if you're in their RP circle you're flush with things to do and have a great mentor to model your RP after. They know how to scale the difficulty level of the situation to the characters involved. They know that they could do most things themselves, but asking others to do those things generates more RP. They strive to move higher, get others under them, continue creating RP, and over all, entertainment for the community.

---

So, those are the three groups, again, for the sake of simplicity. There are many more nuances to all of you, but it's too much to try to discuss every possible combination.

Group A is a time sink. They take take take and never give anything back. They are a net negative for the game. They are not part of our community so much as taking advantage of it.

Group B needs GM attention, and should get it. They are important.

Group C-- well, I actively believe that the GMs should spend more time empowering and propping up Group C, than any other group. This group of players is the most focused on creating RP for other characters.

If you spend your time entertaining other players, creating RP, doing cyberpunk stuff, and have RP circling around you at all times, the GMs are going to notice. They are going to think 'shit, here is a player who is doing as good a job creating RP as I am' and then they are going to think 'I should devote some time to making sure this player has what they need to continue making RP happen'.

That doesn't translate to 'getting all the things'. Don't get it twisted. However, it does translate to a higher degree of trust, and more attention from GMs, because they are going to recognize that giving you a touch of RP is going to snowball into a ton of RP for a multitude of other players.

Looking at the alternative. That same GM could spend 5 hours RPing with someone from Group A and have entertained one single player. No snowball.

Which players do you think the GMs should spend their time focusing on? The ones that are going to create RP for other members of the community? Or the ones that selfishly sign in to treat Sindome like a jRPG on playstation?

If someone from Group A applies for a management role at NLM and someone from Group C applies for a management role at NLM-- who would you want to see in the position? Someone from Group A that is going to collect the paycheck and hangout in their limo at their donation pad on Blue? Or Someone from Group C that is going to actively hire, fire, plot, plan, train, give jobs...

I know who I'd pick. Also, sorry Group B-- you lack the experience in the game to have one of these roles. If you are experienced and don't have a lot of time, well, that's the other problem right there. You lack the time to effectively handle a role with actual in game responsibility.

I won't fault anyone for playing Sindome that doesn't cause a problem or break the rules. However, it is up to each and every one of you to recognize that your IC actions as much as your OOC actions and availability, play into your ability to get certain roles in the game. It's just a fact.

We can't have gang leaders that sign into the game twice a month. We can't have management level employees that never do their job. It's bad for the game. It's bad for the community.

There are plenty of roles out there for part timers that can only play a few hours a week.There are plenty of roles out there for the handful of Group A folks that just want to play this like a single player game and not generate any RP.

What are your thoughts on this as a player? Do you understand why it's important that the limited GM resources be directed, in larger amounts, to the players that are going to snowball those efforts the most? It's not favoritism. It's pragmatism. We have a limited amount of time available to us. We want to touch the most players possible. This means minimizing interactions with Group A. It means maximizing interactions with Group C. And it means Group B gets touches from GMs and the Player GMs that lead the way on the player side.

Again, we aren't leaving anymore out. We don't ignore people just because they haven't had a chance to show us how great they are at RPing. You all know that. But if you want to succeed. If you want to rise up and have your name be known. If you want the GMs to trust you to run big plots, to fill big positions...

Strive to be Giver. Be a creator. Be a player GM. Be a role model. Be an example. Be a storm of RP that is constantly swirling, sweeping up everyone in it's path, newbie and oldbie alike.

-- S

I guess I see "The Uninitiated" as a group that needs fostering. This could probably be done by someone in Group C or in the form of GM interaction. Regardless, I think it is important that GMs and Group C players do their best to help these players move forward. Up their game. Might be as simple as the GM finding a way to help them get into some Group C player's orbit. Might be in the form of hints/tips/suggestions from GMs. I'm not sure. But I think they do need some love.

I'm firmly in Group B simply because my RL schedule doesn't allow me to play more(if only Sindome worked on Navy computers at sea).

However, I understand that my time limits at my current duty station limit what I can do in-game effectively, and also limits how far my character can go because Slither's right, it's not fair for a part-timer to be in a position where other characters might have to wait on them for a couple weeks or more to get an answer or something.

That being said, I think there's room for such players(experience pending of course) at semi-senior / middle management positions, or to hold a position of seniority that can be fulfilled when the player has a stretch they can play. Ideally, this is coordinated with @notes so the GMs know the schedule and when the player has time to have things on their plate, and when they won't.

In addition to the points mentioned above, I feel like there's a group between B and C:

Players who have the time to become part of Group C, but doesn't know how to step up a level.

Perhaps, like Barrien mentioned, tips and suggestions to Group B can help them step up their game.

I occasionally get motivated enough to try to be a C person. It's hard trying to drag RP out of A and B people, and getting/staying in C circles can be difficult, especially topside where the RP required is more complex.

I occasionally get motivated enough to try to be a C person. It's hard trying to drag RP out of A and B people, and getting/staying in C circles can be difficult, especially topside where the RP required is more complex.

I wouldn't say topside RP is more complex. More underhanded or duplicitous, perhaps, but interpersonal relationships in the Mix can be just as mind numbingly twisting -- with more immediate consequences for your actions.

I feel like you absolutely hit the nail on the head, Slither.

As a player I don't really notice the type A's as much as a GM would, but I ten million thousand percent notice the type C's. There are players that I interact with who manage to form hurricanes of plots around them, and it never fails to amaze me. Like, the reason I play the game is because of players like that. I try to learn from them and emulate what they're doing because it's next level stuff.

To the suggestion that there's a group between B and C of players who want to be Givers but don't know how, I'm right there with you. I think experience and knowing what's possible have a lot to do with being able to generate plots, but I think the best thing would be to find a type-C player and try to get involved with what they're up to, or at least get close enough to see how they're doing it and try to incorporate those methods.

Getting a little power or authority can really help, because that opens possibilities of trading influence for favors, testing your subordinates, creating enmity. In fact, I feel like that's almost Slither's point--having power and authority help you to generate plots for other players, so why should you have power and authority if you're going to waste that?

A few points from OOC chat earlier that I'm going to stuff in here--

1) Nothing comes to those who wait

You might be playing a nice guy. Someone who isn't all about that CP life. Someone innocent. And you might be waiting for the bad evil wicked people to hurt them, or to rope them into something they might not do otherwise. You might be waiting for their circumstances to organically put them in a corner they have to fight out of.

It might happen, but it probably isn't going to happen quickly. The players out there looking for people to pull into their schemes, people to abuse, or people to make enemies out of are not generally looking at the barsitters. At best, a barsitter is someone to murder and steal from--but they often don't -do- anything to even open themselves up to that kind of conflict. Passive players give active players very little to work with and it's a lot of effort to tease it out of them. Most of us would much rather grab someone who's already doing something and engage with them there.

2) Use the setting

The material reality of the game, per mechanics, is that every player pretty much has access to a steady, stable job with a guaranteed income and enough in the way of automated mechanical income that they don't ever have to worry about rent. No one needs to eat, but if they want to, they can afford food. Their rent may even be free thanks to a donation pad. They can easily save up to afford any high end item in the game by sitting on paychecks for a few weeks.

There aren't always players running around mugging and murdering the unsuspecting and weak, and staff rarely has time. So the terrifying predatory scumbags that populate the Mix can sometimes become background noise, and you can forget where your character is supposed to be. They have nice clothes, a pretty girlfriend, a warm bed, cool gear, lots of pizza.

Eff that. Mix lyfe is meant to be lived close to the bone. You should absolutely be acting as if you are destitute and eager for a way to get a handful of flash and some breathing room, even if mechanically you're doing OK.. You should be taking cues from the room descriptions and NPCs around you - Life is hard and there's often no way to be comfortable unless you're doing something your gut tells you you shouldn't be. Worse than that, other people are doing awful things and getting ahead in life while your baka ass is sitting at home. It sucks and it isn't fair because they don't deserve it. So go be bad because you deserve to have what they have.

In the absence of precipitating IC events, you can still use the atmosphere of the dome to seed these motivations. It might at first feel like you're sabotaging yourself, but in reality the best experiences you're going to have are going to be the days when you go all in not knowing whether you'll win or lose, and these events will in and of themselves give you the motivation to take your next step--if you fail and you're out a bunch of money, then you need to get it back. If you succeed and pull off some major shit, you're going to have people nipping at your heels.

3) It's OK to be a dick

My favorite characters are my character's enemies. I know I can't speak for everyone, but in my year here I've noticed that the biggest bastards are the most popular characters, the ones who become kind of legendary, even if people gripe about them IC. So start identifying allegiances, selling data, picking sides, fucking people over, and engaging in the occasional bit of ultraviolence. I promise you that you can get away with it and people will love you (OOC) when you don't.

4) UE is not the problem

Without getting into a discussion about mechanics, it's always possible to catch up to the big badasses eventually, and there are ways to give yourself an edge even if you're weaker, but if you're just sitting on your butt waiting to be strong enough, you're doing it wrong. You're always going to be weaker than someone, and there's always going to be some stuff you just can't do.

This whole game is about pulling in outside help for stuff, or being the person who gets pulled in. Sitting around waiting to be a badass is not going to go your way because the situations you're waiting to come in and win at are going to change or go away. Work with what your character is now, not what you think they'll be in a month.

So if someone says go be CP and you don't know what that means, start with this stuff. This all applies to topsiders, too, but of course they've got to be a little more sophisticated about it.

Commit more assault. The Mix is a dire place, it looks like shit and nearly the entire spectrum of violence is occurring everywhere all the time, even if it's just the room descriptions you've come to expect and filter out.

Just go out and put your bat through some teeth, it's some of the most fun I've had with this game. You don't have to stomp them out, you don't have to take everything they own, and you don't even have to be quiet about it. Pick the moments when you do make those discretions and they'll stand out even more. When those choices matter and carry a sharper point, there's less of a threat of extreme retaliation and you're more open to do cool stuff. An eye for an eye in a beat-down isn't a bullet through your brain.

The assault thing is tricky, just yesterday there was a situation and again it resulted in the Mix grabbing pitchforks. It made for some hysterics and a lot of people getting pulled into RP/action, so that's worth it.

Violence happens all around in the Mix, but when PCs do it a lot of other PCs get heavily involved even though they probably wouldn't in CP reality. But, at least it generated RP and fun. That's what counts. This post began as bitchy but turned into "this is fine".

+1 Vera

@ExMachinae Don't you think a lot of people got involved because it's such a rarity? Do you think it would be the same reaction if it was happening 3 times a day? The fact that everyone is getting involved is due to two things:

1. People OOCly like RP

2. People are unused to seeing this kind of thing FOR REAL, they are only used to it in ambient population messages and when GMs puppet gangers.