User:Lord lut/Roleplay market
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Roleplay Market (RPM) is an online roleplaying community centering on play-by-post (PbP). Rather than simply being a forum, the website is custom-suited for roleplaying games and integrates a host of advanced features specifically designed with roleplaying in mind.
While Dungeons & Dragons is one of the more common gaming systems on RPM-—with several games from every edition being hosted—-there many games with other systems, just a few of which include: D20 Modern, A song of Ice and Fire RPG, Abberant, Anima, Worlds of Wonder, Call of Cthulhu, Classic Marvel Superheroes, and Champions.
The site is 100% free, supported through unobtrusive ads and donations from players.
RPM offers a host of features, many of which are custom designed for PbP gameplay.
IScript the scripting agent built into RPM; it is loosely based upon LISP and its variants. Iscript is usable in any post on RPM. The most common uses for IScript are text formatting and making posts that are only viewable by certain players/characters, however there are more advanced functions such as table making and data-calculation.
- Text formatting
- IScript allows a users to format text within their posts. Text can be bolded, italicized, underlined, and struck-out; also, the color can be changed.
- “Spoiler tags”, buttons that hide information in a drop-down box, are often used for space conservation—such as holding a large picture that would make a post bulky—or holding information that someone may not want to read yet.
- IScript allows users to incorporate hyperlinks into posts.
- IScript also allows people to send private messages to the Gamemaster (GM) or other players within a post (GMs see all messages sent in this way within a game they are running). This is useful for if a character whispers to another character, or if only certain characters speak another language. GMs can use this to discuss information that only one character knows.
Each game on RPM is located in its own private thread. Here, the GM can create several different kinds of threads, sub-folders, and documents to organize and play the game as they see fit.
Some of the folders and documents possible include:
- Similar to the way they work on a computer, sub-folders house threads and documents, allowing more organization.
- Character threads
- RPM members can create a “character” thread, which is usually used as a character sheet.
- Players may create as many characters as the GM permits, and each character has its own avatar.
- It is possible for the GM or the controlling player to transfer a character to another player.
- In-character thread
- An in-character thread is a thread where every post a player makes uses his or her character’s name and avatar instead of the members’. A player with multiple characters is able to choose which of his or her characters a post is attributed to.
- The in-character thread also has a map function, which allows the GM to present a grid-based game map on-site. These maps can be associated and disassociated with a thread as needed. This map can have character and monster avatars placed like tokens on it, which can be moved to match the activity in the game. The background of the map is created and edited in the “map” feature.
- At the moment this function does not work most of the time. “BobTHQ,” the site’s owner and creator, has been working on coding a new, “better, more versatile, mapping system”.
- The character tracker is a drop-down table that GMs can use to arrange battles. The primary use is tracking hit points, character and monster statistics, and status effects.
- Both in and out of character threads have a “Secure Die Roller.” This is essentially a random number generator (RNG) for players to use in-lieu of dice. The die roller’s results can be visible to everyone, or “hidden” so that only the GM and the player that made the roll can see. However, in order to prevent cheating, rolls cannot be deleted in any manner. If a post with rolls attached to it is deleted, those rolls are applied to the next post by that character.
- Out-of-character thread
- Out of character threads work like a normal forum thread; every post is designated as being written the player, rather than the character like in-character threads.
- The only special feature included in out-of-character threads are the secure die roller.
- Documents are editable threads where the original post always appears at the top of the page, even on subsequent pages of a multi-page thread.
- Links directly connect to another page (on or off of RPM). Rather than being located in a document, they appear in a sub-folder like a thread.
- Maps are the editable versions of the battle-maps used in in-character threads.
In addition to these, every game has a “game panel” anchored to the left side of every page within that game. The game panel is a static side-bar that the GM can edit to include information, links to other threads or sites, and anything else the GM decides to put in it.
The GM toolbox
Some tools and features are only available to the GMs. This section will discuss some of the more prominent of these features
- Thread permissions
- GMs are able to limit who is able to view or post in any given thread, as well as who is able to create new threads/documents.
- This is useful for creating a GM planning area, which would likely hold information that the GM would prefer the players not gain in advance. It is also useful for times when a party splits, and some characters are unaware of what the others are doing.
- Limited permissions can be assigned to individual players/characters, as well as groups.
- Character grouping
- This function allows a GM to group certain characters.
- Character grouping makes it possible for players and GMs to send messages through IScript to multiple players or characters at the same time, rather than having to make a separate message for each.
- It also allows the GM to limit view/post permissions to that group, instead of using the “custom” permissions.
RPM has a friendly community of users that welcomes new additions.
- In addition to the game forums, RPM has a community forum. Within these are several sub-folders including:
- The Game Ads sub-folder is a place for GMs to advertise their game and try and find players, as well as for players to request new games.
- The GM Discussions sub-folder is a place for GMs to bounce ideas off of each other and discuss nuances of GMing
- The General Discussion
- The Site Questions, Suggestions, and Admin Requests
- Message system
- RPM has a private messaging system that allows players to send messages back-and-forth, similar to other forums and social-networking sites.
- FAQ (frequently asked questions)
- RPM has a thorough FAQ which is mostly focused on site mechanics.
- Questions about gaming systems are usually discussed in the forums.
- Roleplay Market FAQ: IScript: http://www.roleplaymarket.com/faq.aspx?faq=12