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Arashin Kujqai

Would you be willing to RP using alternative platforms?

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So I was curious with the coming of technology bringing us VR and all that(I'm sure you know where this is going already) of how likely people are to RP using other platforms like VRchat or whatever else comes out in the years to come that break the barriers of just text/chat RP.

 

I know people play DnD and RP in that sense or use other formats to RP with, but I was curious how willing you would be to be able to feel as if you are your character in a virtual plane. Being able to talk as if you're the character, wave a weapon around like your character does(if they even do), interacting with others in the same vein without it coming off as just a meme or out of irony. I figure the initial reaction is some would cringe at the idea or just off the bat decline ever doing anything outside a chatbox, or that they'd only do it in an ironic sense. Part of me sees that and part of me sees actors who do this as if it's normal or I think back to when I'd pretend to be a DBZ character(when I was little of course) and have fun in an actual sense instead of an ironic one.

 

I think if I was comfortable enough with the people I talk to, have RP'd with them before, or was introduced to an open enough environment/community that welcomes the concept, I'd be able to RP in VR or on a mic or through an alternative besides just text/chat. If it was LARP'ing, I think I'd draw the line there just because I wouldn't even be able to persuade myself that I'm RP'ing well enough to be convincing. Even if I had all the materials, outfitting, and knew all of my lore without any sources, I still feel like I wouldn't be very outgoing or try to do anything. At most, I'd prolly stay quiet while wearing a bunch of armor that'd cover my face because I'd be too shy to initiate or have any fun and would be too scared of screwing up lmao. I guess I'd be a lurker if I tried LARP'ing.

 

How about you? Would you be willing to go into character if it was outside of a chatbox, specifically as an FFXIV character? To what extent if at all?

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I attempt to RP outside of the game as often as I can and I play D&D/Pathfinder weekly so to answer the title alone: yes. VRchat specifically though? I think that's a level I couldn't handle. I struggle with D&D because I'm often afraid to give voice to my character. VRchat would be like a step above that and a step below LARPing.

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For tabletop, perhaps, since tabletop has 2 intertwined facets: roleplay AND gameplay.

 

But then we get to the problem I'm already facing with a purely roleplay medium like FF14 ingame: the limitations and rather serious constraints it introduces over roleplay. If you're after gameplay, then it's absolutely not suited to it since it lacks all tools you could find on platforms like Roll20, or just around your physical tabletop meeting. If you're after scenes more complex than a simple meeting or sitting staying in a quiet corner, FF14 is absolutely shit at making that possible without heavy limitations: it is definitely not suited to most simple actions, and I'm not even speaking about complex stuff like combat, adventure, etc. The realistic and real time side of ingame animations/idle, accurate representation of the environment in real time too, tends to break suspension of disbelief and you just end up with characters all hanging or standing, staring at each other while everyone painfully writes their piece of text. This is what makes me think that FFXIV as a medium for roleplay is only fine for static scenes, like purely social/character development RP. And even then, you're limited to the place actually modeled ingame.

 

So as soon as you introduce something in the vein, VR or not VR, it tends to break everything to my opinion. Roleplay is before anything telling a story, and for that, you need as little constraints as possible.

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IMHO, VR may be too much detail.   The closer you get to a representation of reality the less imagination / creative thought there is for the players to experience.   Even in D&D, miniatures and landscapes can be overdone / detailed to the point where it disengages the player's mental imagery of the scenario.

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I've done plenty of D&D and such games over the years. Nothing like getting a bunch of friends around a table, breaking out the snacks and dice, and going for it.

 

As for VR, the tech has a long way to go before I'll jump on that bandwagon. I can't move like my characters do, so the theoretical game will have to give me ways to compensate for that. I don't sound like my characters, so again the game would need to give me a way to compensate (I can RP a bard in a text based environment, but in real life you really don't want to hear me sing). There are people who have severe mobility issues, or are hard of hearing, or have speech impediments, how will the VR game allow them to join in the fun?  Maybe someday VR become compelling, but for now I'm giving it a pass.

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On 3/27/2018 at 4:44 PM, maoilmhin said:

IMHO, VR may be too much detail.   The closer you get to a representation of reality the less imagination / creative thought there is for the players to experience.   Even in D&D, miniatures and landscapes can be overdone / detailed to the point where it disengages the player's mental imagery of the scenario.

I can kinda see that, I think that also just comes down to each their own too. Some may prefer something more vivid they can actually imagine and some prefer the freedom to assume what it looks like themselves sorta thing. Kinda like if someone prefers books or movies etc.

23 hours ago, Tregarde said:

I've done plenty of D&D and such games over the years. Nothing like getting a bunch of friends around a table, breaking out the snacks and dice, and going for it.

 

As for VR, the tech has a long way to go before I'll jump on that bandwagon. I can't move like my characters do, so the theoretical game will have to give me ways to compensate for that. I don't sound like my characters, so again the game would need to give me a way to compensate (I can RP a bard in a text based environment, but in real life you really don't want to hear me sing). There are people who have severe mobility issues, or are hard of hearing, or have speech impediments, how will the VR game allow them to join in the fun?  Maybe someday VR become compelling, but for now I'm giving it a pass.

Well we do have voice modifiers at this point that could help for that. And for singing, there's always autotune LOL. Technology is releasing more and more to the world to either put what you are IRL to a move-able thing in a game or at the very least control something you can't be in such an environment. I figure the gap closes in more and more every day until we'll finally get to a point where we'll be able to process movement/actions through thought into a computer system(which oddly enough is something that's working at this point in time now too).

 

As far as disabilities come, there's always something in the works to work around whatever obstacle stops you. Mute people use text to speech programs mixed with voice changers to seem as if they're not even mute at all. Those in wheel chairs or crutches have controls that can take over your legs/feet through different control functions. The list goes on with how technology is overcoming life's obstacles but at some point in time, we'll be capable of the kinda fantasy/sci fi you find in SAO or Ready Player One.

 

Overall I would give it about a couple years until the average consumer owns VR tech with the bare minimum of being able to pretend they're something they're not IRL and having fun with it to their liking. I've actually seen some people do DnD in VRchat and tbh, it got me thinking about how many issues that can solve alone. Like having a more malleable environment to keep track of scores, having the option to not leave the house to participate, and of course you can paint yourself to be as realistic to your scenes in DnD as much as you want. I get what you mean though, there's still a ways to go before it'd be good enough to serve as an option that could be seen as globally acceptable. It's definitely easier to use a simple text platform or just a simple table/mat as it stands. Does make me wish LARP'ing was easier for the common person to pick up an outfit as defined as they'd like and just have fun but that's where my head goes when I think of VR.

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Another issue that I have with VR is the increased level of awkwardness. I roleplay as a writer, not an actor. I'm a puppet master kind of RPer, I speak about my characters at the third person (yes, even in tabletop sessions), and consider them another entity, like a writer does. I don't impersonate them. I totally understand that it's not stupid to act them out like an actors does, to the contrary. It's just not my thing. 

 

VR tends to go a little against that.

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I think personally that VR in time will go a long way to accustom to the roleplay community in a better way of making the player more accustomed to the character, and when that happens I can definitely it bringing in a audience of roleplayers when VR in itself gets a bit more improved than what we are currently seeing and is a bit more commonplace I would say, I see VRChat and all that and despite the vast array of memes that I see coming out of it , it seems to be the only VR game I can see that could host roleplay at the minute!

 

As I said though as time goes along and VR games improve a bit I can certainly see it being a thing, of course only to a specific crowd I would imagine because as said above, most of us RPers are writers, not actors so it would be a very different sort of state to get into.

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