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Reasons Why RP sims fail.


Borelek
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  • 2 weeks later...

You have to keep it interesting enough to keep people coming back time after time.  Look how many Modern Urban roleplay sims I have seen start up and fail after 6 months.  A dozen.  They get boring,  there too much focus on slsex,  there is no one ever around or  you have a stupid hud  There is crack den if you can break into roleplay.  

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 8/12/2019 at 1:55 AM, Borelek said:

a former RP sim owner and experienced role player, race leader, and RP business owner, here are my conclusions about why so many RP sims on second life fail

1. Owner/Admin attitudes

  • "My way or the highway" will drive people away. You do not have to accommodate every opinion, but you need to listen and show respect.
  • "The guests owe us." No. guests do not owe you anything. They are your customers and if you want them to role play and possibly donate or rent from you, then you have to give them a superb experience. Developing a resentful attitude toward non-paying customers will eventually kill your sim.
  • "As an owner, I am an SL aristrocrat." No, you are not. Anyone can be a sim owner, regardless of SL experience. As far as social rank, you are like a shop owner and your guests are the customers, not the other way around.
  • Hostile or competitive attitudes toward guests are uncalled for and will end the sim in short order. Once a sim and its owner get a reputation for nastiness, it is almost impossible to start over. If you want a fresh start after being a nasty owner or admin and losing your sim, you will have to create an alt and keep your other identity a secret.

2. Owner/Admin expectations

  • Do NOT expect Sim guests to pay for any part of the tier. If you cannot cover 100% of the tier yourself, plus all costs of purchasing products for the sim, then do not own one. Guests sometimes donate, but consider that icing on the cake, not the meal.
  • It will take a year or more to get your sim off the ground and self sustaining in terms of participation. Impatience will kill the sim early.
  • You must be on your own sim as a player 2-3 hours a day when starting out. You must always be RP ready. Owners and admins who park themselves OOC or AFK display a lackadaisical attitude about their own sim and guests will pick up on that and fall away. Parking OOC or IC with a tiny group of besties and refusing to RP with others will drive the sim into the ground.
  • Rent should never be more than 2-2.5 times the prim limit offered the renter. Sims that charge a high rent for low prims will not attract renters.
  • Never assume an officer or business owner has fully read or comprehended online info or a notecard about his or her job. You must explain it in person.
  • If guests, officers or business owners are let go after only one mistake (happened to me), the sim is headed down a slope to shut down.
  • Having a one-program fits all approach to RP, such as requiring everyone to take all the same classes, regardless of prior knowledge or experience will drive people away.
  • Hire admins or officers only based on verifiable experience. A single draconian officer can destroy a sim's popularity.
  • Be wary of admins forming coalitions to overthrow the owners. This happened on one sim. The owner was persuaded to sell the sim after a coalition of admins ganged up on him and ran popularity into the ground in order to force a coup. of course their arrogance made them think the sim would bounce back under their ownership, but it died in short order. Never hesitate to oust or ban someone who refuses to play nice.

3. RP structure

  • lots of required classes kill morale
  • required mentoring is similarly a morale killer. People want to play, not endlessly prepare to play.
  •  Too much structure makes people feel gagged and bound.
  • Too little structure makes people feel lost.
  • I recommend a lore that is sufficiently general to allow for guest creativity within reasonable parameters.
  • A few characters will get into using fictional race languages, but not a lot. Do not expect huge interest in learning to speak elvish, dwarvish or other race languages. Allow characters within a race to have their own language or dialect.
  • Allow diversity in beliefs. a state-endorsed religious cult tends to drive away all but the power-hungry.
  • Keep the allowed race list at 15 or less. A circus of one-of-a-kind races is silly and annoying to those who want to be part of a one-race community.
  • Rules should be simple and ethical. Show everyone respect and good manners OOC. Excessive IC nastiness should be good cause for a character withdrawing ICly from an interchange and avoiding that character. IC nastiness about beliefs or LGBTQ issues can go bad and OOC very fast. Sometimes people play a hateful character because that is how they really feel in RL and use the character as a vent for RL hatred. Be very wary of IC nastiness that becomes a sort of persecution. This also applies to nastiness toward IC conservative religious beliefs. a Character who is Christian may fall under the same IC fire from someone who dislikes that faith, the same as a gay character may fall under fire IC from someone who RL dislikes LGBT. If you see a pattern of persecution or hostility based on any aspect of identity, then investigate it.
  • Make character IC actions have IC consequences. If I am mean or haughty toward everyone, then no one will like me or talk to me even IC. natural consequence of my IC attitude.
  • Experiencing leveling often rewards people with increased battle ability for RP that has nothing to do with battle. Any sense that people get of unfairness will drive them away.
  • Factions need to represent a range of ethical perspectives. Two egotistical royal *****s fighting it out with no other factions to choose from will drive away everyone who does not wish to play blind loyalty to a ***** royal. Have at least one faction that is pacifist and neutral.
  • Races to have equal powers and huge discrepancies in power based on XP can cause discouragement and inactivity among guests. If I can never get caught up in battle level to those who have been on a while, then I will get discouraged and possibly leave. I recommend 5 experience levels, with 5 representing the highest level of mastery and no further progress beyond it. That way a newcomer can eventually rise to equal footing with old-timers.

4. Building Mistakes

  • Poorly or non-artistically built sims are a sore thumb in the eyes of potential RP guests. Get or hire an SL building artist to evaluate your sim and advise you
  • Using up most of your prim allowance for the sim will lag the sim down and prevent people from being able to rent personal prim allowances.
  • Excessive scripts in objects will lag the sim down horrendously. Once objects are sized and textured or colored right, remove the scripts for altering those things. If the object is not copy perm, then save the scripts in a folder so you can return them to object's contents at any time.
  • High Avatar complexity and scripts will lag a sim down. Make sure guests are told to remove sizing texturing and coloring scripts from clothing or objects they wear. If I carry a mage staff around in an inactive form, have that copy of the staff also be relatively script free. Only switch to my fully magic-capable staff when I am going to use the magic.
  • Use phantom objects when possible. Too many non-phantom objects on a sim lags it down.
  • Some mesh or sculpt objects that are set to non-phantom have an extended region of exclusion way beyond the visible surface of the object. If this happens, make the object phantoms and then create an invisiprim surface to stand on.
  •  

Borelek Khurin

I sure wish I could name names on #1. The new ones owned by corporations are the worst (space.) Western second worst.

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my main peeve is the lack of anime avatars being allowed. RP sims always are "Anime not allowed. Period." or "If its anime its a child." bull*****. Like seriously I've seen ALOT of very good anime fantasy avi's with adult porportions and still are denied, why you ask.....because of the "genre hate". I personally prefer an anime avi over a "realistic" avi. Like im already realistic in real life, I want to be creative and use second life for its purpose, having a SECOND LIFE.

I await your hate.

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On 7/14/2020 at 11:29 PM, chaosninja7 said:

my main peeve is the lack of anime avatars being allowed. RP sims always are "Anime not allowed. Period." or "If its anime its a child." bull*****. Like seriously I've seen ALOT of very good anime fantasy avi's with adult porportions and still are denied, why you ask.....because of the "genre hate". I personally prefer an anime avi over a "realistic" avi. Like im already realistic in real life, I want to be creative and use second life for its purpose, having a SECOND LIFE.

I await your hate.

Question: Will every argument be considered genre hate or are you actually open for discussion?

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2 hours ago, Sukubia Scarmon said:

Question: Will every argument be considered genre hate or are you actually open for discussion?

10 bucks that they are not. I mean, you are talking to someone equalizing the use of an anime avatar with being creative.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 8/15/2019 at 5:56 PM, Selene Gregoire said:

In a nutshell, RP sims fail because people are @$$holes.

Some are, I agree, but it depends the owners. OP has a point when she talks about owners having a 'My way or the highway' mentality. I've come across sims where they ignore RPers when they try to get involved with an RP, or have their RP voided by higher ups because they didn't "fit " into whatever story the owners or mods had. I've even come across RP sims where there is a visible hierarchy. Jobs given to friends and family of the sim owner, or a mod, and no visible way for RPers to climb any progression ladder. 

On 8/24/2019 at 3:17 PM, Alyona Su said:

Most role-players do it part-time and rarely require a rental home. I ran a successful role-play region for three years (then passed it off to a friend) - the moment we added rental homes role-play went down to half as those people would camp in their homes and cuddle-bunny their partners, rarely coming out to actually role-play. There's nothing wrong with having a *few* themed rental properties in the role-play, but if anyone demands such before they'll role-play, my answer is simply "Whether you are missed or not, it's your loss".

I've said it before and I'll say it again: A good region design with regard to role-play is to have a central area where people will congregate. In my case it was a tavern in the town center; the rest of the area was specifically-designed to discourage camping there (though sometimes people did it anyway.)

Oh, and rules? That's the first reason many place die. Drop the walls-o-text and keep it simple. One notecard the *briefly* explains the theme of the role-play, no need to novels of back-story. Sheesh. Another notecard for rules. If your rules (role-play AND region) are longer than two notecard pages then you're already doing it wrong. Stop trying to educate people and just explain two things: Remember that people are actors on a stage so never take anything personally and Moderator decisions are always final. Done.

This is also another brilliant point, I've seen sims where people do just camp out in their homes and don't bother interacting with anyone outside of that. One of my favourite sims went down because of the lack of Rp because of this very fact. It's kind of destructive cycle. People come to an RP spot to live and get involved, but after a while, laziness sets in and they stay in their homes, or don't bother getting involved. Players who take on police roles are often ones who are just the worst. Not everyone who plays as police officers will do this mind you, but there are some who just want to drive around in a police car and have no interest in creating Role-plays that involve investigation. 

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1 hour ago, spincity said:

Some are, I agree, but it depends the owners. OP has a point when she talks about owners having a 'My way or the highway' mentality. I've come across sims where they ignore RPers when they try to get involved with an RP, or have their RP voided by higher ups because they didn't "fit " into whatever story the owners or mods had. I've even come across RP sims where there is a visible hierarchy. Jobs given to friends and family of the sim owner, or a mod, and no visible way for RPers to climb any progression ladder. 

Owners are people are they not? My statement wasn't just about the roleplayers. It included everyone involved in RP regardless of any position in any "hierarchy". To clarify, no, not everyone is an @$$hole. Just most of them seem to find their way to SL and many of those find their way into RP, regardless of position or role. I am speaking from many years of RP and not just in SL. SL seems to attract more of them. Note I say "seem(s)". I am not stating it as a fact. Just my opinion based on my experiences in SL and beyond.

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33 minutes ago, Selene Gregoire said:

Owners are people are they not? My statement wasn't just about the roleplayers. It included everyone involved in RP regardless of any position in any "hierarchy". To clarify, no, not everyone is an @$$hole. Just most of them seem to find their way to SL and many of those find their way into RP, regardless of position or role. I am speaking from many years of RP and not just in SL. SL seems to attract more of them. Note I say "seem(s)". I am not stating it as a fact. Just my opinion based on my experiences in SL and beyond.

Yes, they are people too, not saying all sim owners are like that. Like I said, it depends on the owner. I've found RP sim owners who are great people. There are a lot of different ones around,  I was just agreeing with what you said and putting my own experiences down. RPing in SL seems to be fundamentally different from anything I've encountered before. No matter where you go, you will find people who are just interested in their own experience and to hell with everyone else.  

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On 7/15/2020 at 7:52 PM, PlayfulOmega said:

having power hungry mods too

 

Just don't have staff 

This is profoundly ass-backwards, in my experience. RP sims die because roleplay hinges on there being actual roles to play in a game with active storytelling/dungeon mastering. And people lose enthusiasm for a slew of out of theme characters trying to interact with their canon compliant ones. There was a webcomic back in the day called Elf Only Inn, about a chat room that was SUPPOSED to be a high fantasy roleplay chat. Except, the regulars were a guy with a Goku avatar, a vulcan pretending to be an elf, a Duke Nukem ripoff just making the elves lives nonsense. It was very funny, but also very true. 

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On 7/26/2020 at 8:17 PM, Esme Arrowmint said:

This is profoundly ass-backwards, in my experience. RP sims die because roleplay hinges on there being actual roles to play in a game with active storytelling/dungeon mastering. And people lose enthusiasm for a slew of out of theme characters trying to interact with their canon compliant ones. There was a webcomic back in the day called Elf Only Inn, about a chat room that was SUPPOSED to be a high fantasy roleplay chat. Except, the regulars were a guy with a Goku avatar, a vulcan pretending to be an elf, a Duke Nukem ripoff just making the elves lives nonsense. It was very funny, but also very true. 

God, I haven't heard Elf Only Inn in ages and I forgot just how perfectly it encapsulated online roleplay at the time. I wonder if it's still online. 

I think there's some truth to most of the things posted here. There are a lot of flaws that can ultimately sink a sim. I know a lot of people point to the 'my way or the highway' approach to admin / staff control, but the other extreme is an admin that lets people get away with everything and finds themselves paying for a sim filled with stories or roleplay they don't enjoy... And that's when it tends to get shut down. 

There's a much softer middle ground there, to establishing a community with a community culture. Every single rule or admin action shapes sim culture, and I think a lot of new sim owners don't consider that. If they have a massive set of hoops everyone must jump through to progress in rank or story, those need to be consistent for everyone or you see frustrations and upset players over special treatment. If you have factions where only one faction gets a lot of attention/stories then you're gonna see that faction thrive and others atrophy. If you allow a freeform of avatars you're gonna get that mixed elf only inn style feel, which is going to attract people who want that but not folks looking for a more cohesive experience. If you have a novel of rules you might deal with players getting real rules-lawyery on each other. If you have no rules or rules too lenient you might see someone pushing their luck to the detriment of other players. 

It's really all about finding the balance that the sim owner wants, and finding other people who want the same. Anyone who makes a sim trying to appeal to everyone will find themselves appealing to no one. Better to carve out a niche that you enjoy and find others who want it. 

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I've been walking through New Babbage recently, taking pictures. So few people are there. It's a whole city, 14 sims, so well built and maintained, and nobody home. Many available rentals, too; I've never seen so many "For Rent" carts before. If you want to live in the mists of Quarry Hill and have a big house, you can.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Expect to spoon feed RP for as long as you want RP to happen. Hire others to help drive it, but if somebody isn't directing a story or plot, people just won't RP on their own for very long. At least not until the sim is well established and few last long enough for that. Be careful whom you hire as mods and barring a major screw up, back up their decisions. Make it clear that you are the ultimate authority and if you feel you have to override something one of them does, it's not personal. If any mods or players try a power play to force you to grant special privileges,  or take actions against the vision you had, boot them, ban them, and block them ASAP regardless of who they are or how many rentals they have. This is something you can not allow to grow. There may be some short term drama, but the sim will be better without that sort of bully.

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On 7/30/2020 at 8:27 PM, animats said:

I've been walking through New Babbage recently, taking pictures. So few people are there. It's a whole city, 14 sims, so well built and maintained, and nobody home. Many available rentals, too; I've never seen so many "For Rent" carts before. If you want to live in the mists of Quarry Hill and have a big house, you can.

Yes, I've noticed a decline on the few occasions I've visited over recent years.  It's the same story in Caledon, and possibly elsewhere though there really isn't much actual steampunk around, despite the latest LL Blog.  The Contraption group has more action than those regions.  Steampunk has had its day and probably won't revive for another 5 years.  Hollywood does its best but that's the movies, not inworld rp (of which there's precious little).  A place to live?  Fine.  A story?  Good luck.

Edited by Garnet Psaltery
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