Getting Started !

Discussion in 'NEW ARRIVALS & DEPARTURES' started by Sir Basil, Sep 5, 2016.

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    Iwaku is a diverse roleplaying community of artists and writers. We believe that everybody has the potential to become a great writer and roleplayer, and strive to create a welcoming, friendly environment to facilitate roleplay in. To support this goal, we host challenges, showcases, guides, and workshops in addition to the roleplays that you'll find on our site. This guide will provide a little rundown on how to get started roleplaying on Iwaku, and how to be a good member in our little family. We're so glad that you found us ! This guide is by no means comprehensive. It will simply give you a starting point for your Iwaku experience. There are many options for roleplay other than the ones I've listed, including Chat RP, and our newest feature; Iwaku Clans. There are also other fancy features for building your roleplay portfolio, such as Characters, and Blogs. This is only intended to introduce you to the basic aspects of roleplaying on Iwaku, and get you familiarized with the basic principles of Iwaku. Take the chance to explore the site after reading this guide, and feel free to message a staff member if you ever have a question.


    You've just arrived at Iwaku, and you might not know anyone. That can be very overwhelming and scary, so the first thing you should do is introduce yourself! The "New Arrivals & Departures" section is a great way to establish yourself. Make a new thread, and post a little bit about you - names , age, non-roleplay interests are all good places to start ! If you post about what kinds of roleplay you're interested in, or what goals you have for your roleplaying future, other members can direct you towards RPs that suit your interests. Don't be shy! The community on Iwaku is very friendly and welcoming, and posting in the New Arrivals board is a good way to experience that first hand.

    You can also dip into the ChatBox and introduce yourself. This is the best place to get quick answers to questions from staff and other members, as well as just a fun place to spend time with your fellow writers outside of the context of roleplay. It's a fun, casual place to relax inbetween posts. You'll often meet new people here, and every once in a while you'll see people who are looking around for new players for their roleplays. People will also link their ideas, and occasionally pitch their concepts here as well. We also have a Discord, which fulfills a similar function. Within the General Chatting section of the forums, you can also take the time to socialize with the community about all manner of media, as well as play silly forum-based games. Remember, the General Chatting section shouldn’t be used for roleplay!

    If you haven't done it yet, you should fill out your Roleplayer's Resume, under the "Personal Details" tab on the drop down from your username. There, you can specify what kinds of preferences you have for RP, as well as "Star" RP. It's a good idea to fill this out, because it lets other people know what you're interested in, before they agree to RP with you. I know that my "slow, lengthy poster" choices in my roleplayer resume either make people very interested in RPing with me -- or very not. It's a good way to make sure that you and your RP partner(s) are compatible!


    Roleplaying on Iwaku comes in two distinct flavors; all ages RP and "Star" RP. All ages RP is roleplay that doesn't have sexual content as a primary component of it. Adults and teens generally play alongside one another in these roleplays without any problems. "Red Star" and "Blue Star" RP are roleplays that have sexual content as a large component of the roleplay. Blue Star RP is for teen members under the age of 18 only, while Red Star RP is for adult members above the age of 18. And never shall the two meet ! Both all ages RP and "star" are further broken down into group and one on one components.


    Joining a group roleplay can start in two boards, Interest Checking & Creation or Group OOC and Sign-Up. Interest Checking is where a GM will post their ideas for a roleplay, and see if there is any interest in their idea. Commenting that you like the idea is a good way to express that you would be interested in playing in the game. Sometimes the GM will already have world details or character ideas listed if it's an original universe. This is a good opportunity to ask questions about the world, and get ideas for your character.

    Another option is to explore the Group OOC and Signups board. Unlike Interest Checking & Creation, many of the threads in this section are OOC threads for roleplays that have already been established. You should always look at the "prefix" of the thread. These are the coloured icons before the name of the thread that say whether or not there are "Open Signups" or "Closed Signups." Obviously you're going to want to go to the threads that have "Open Signups!" I would recommend sorting the thread by "date created", as that will show which OOC threads and roleplays are newest, and most likely need players !

    You'll also see from time to time "By Invitation Only". This generally means that the cast of characters and players was established in the Interest Check. However , if you really like the idea, it never hurts to start a Conversation with the GM and ask if there's any possibility that you could participate. If they say no, you absolutely need to respect that, and realize that the chances of your acceptance into an "Invitation Only" RP were not strong to begin with. For that reason, frequently checking the Interest Check & Creation is a good idea !


    One on one roleplays take place between you and one other person. These roleplays either take place in the appropriately named "one x one" sections of the forums or within private conversations. Because these roleplays can take place in private conversations, it's important to always note the star by your partner's username. It is against site policy to roleplay sexual content with anything other than the appropriate star for your age group. If your one X one isn't sexual, you have nothing to worry about, and can enjoy a mixture of red and blue stars.

    If you want a partner for a One X One, the best way to do it is by posting in the Seeking One X One section. Take note of “first response” within One X One requests — this generally means that the first person to respond to the request, is the lucky winner of a new RP partner. Essentially, its first come first serve. You basically put what amounts to a personal ad in a new thread within this board. It's a good idea to let people know what kind of roleplays you like, what kind of characters you're interested in playing, if you have any plot ideas, and what kind of posts you expect from another person. Remember, Iwaku is a welcoming, learning environment, so we try to stay away from language like "Literate" RP! I've included an example of what this would look like here.

    Hi there! My name is <Name>. I'm <age>, and I would love to have a longtime partner for some RPs! I'm online around these times <12:00am-12:00pm>, and I'd like the following <post expectations> from my partner. I have an interest in these ideas, such as <monsters, demons, devils, what not> and would like to play characters who are <knightly, virtuous, medieval, unrepentant>. I expect that my roleplay will be <Star / or Not Star RP> so please keep that in mind when you reply to my request! I would prefer to roleplay in <Conversations or Forum thread?> Please let me know if any of these ideas appeal to you!


    Iwaku is somewhat unique in that we have a Roleplay Help & Discussion section, in addition to our Refining Writing section. In these two boards, you will find guides, workshops, and a place to post questions about roleplay in general. This is a good place to get inspiration and ideas, as well as a great place to ask about problems you've had in the past with RP. There's always interesting discussions happening in that board, ranging from discussion of which magic systems people like, to more technical questions about how to avoid certain RP pitfalls. It is important to note though, that if you're having problems with one of your current RPs, don't name specific members or specific roleplays. That's just asking for drama, and results in a messy, nasty situation all around! Don't do it!

    Our content staff are dedicated to posting new guides and workshops to help people with questions they've had historically about genres, characters, and settings. Browsing through the Refining Writing section can give you a good idea of how to further improve your writing, and maybe think about things in a new way. If you want to request a guide or a workshop, you can always post in the "Workshop Requests and Suggestions.' It's more than likely that a content development staff member will see it, and add it to their to-do list. Many of us, behind the scenes, are working on new content on a daily basis!


    Remember, Iwaku is a community, and your roleplays and actions don't exist within a vacuum. It's important to be a positive contributor to that community! Do everything you can to maintain a pleasant and upbeat attitude in your OOC interactions on the site, and try to keep an open mind. Iwaku doesn't tolerate behaviour that compromises our Terms of Service, plagiarism, or bigotry. Our biggest rule though is; Don't be an asshole, and have a lot of fun. Our staff are here to help you, and your fellow members will be more than happy to collaborate with you on telling some great stories!


    A list of terms that I’ve lovingly lifted from our friends at FYeahRoleplayAdvice! You’ll be seeing these often around the site. There are many other words you'll see flying around, but these are some of the most basic.

    Show Spoiler
    Activity — On roleplay applications, this is to let the people know how active you will be on the website posting.
    Admin — The ‘manager’ or person in charge of the roleplay, group, blog, etc.
    No Bios Required — A roleplay that does not require you to submit an app (application) to join the roleplay.
    AU — Alternate Universe. The world that strays from the canon either slightly or entirely.
    Canon — The original source information (TV show, book, etc.) that the characters came from.
    Closed Roleplay — The thread/roleplay is closed off to outsiders and is only welcome to those that are mentioned and already involved.
    Crossover — Where two or more fandoms overlap/intertwine in a roleplay.
    Doubling — When you and your partner both multiple characters.
    Drabble — A written piece related to developing the character in some way.
    Face Claim — The “face” of your character. The celebrity, actor, anime character that is used to portray the appearance of your character.
    Fade To Black — Often used within sexual scenes where the players end/skip a scene, though the actions are thought to be played out despite not being typed, and the scene picks back up after the skipped scene would have ended.
    Fan Character — An original character created in a canon world.
    Fluff — 1. Fluff is when you add additional, though probably unnecessary, information in a post to make it longer/match a partner’s post length. 2. Fluff in romance roleplays/shipping is when there are scenes that probably do not progress the plot forward in any way, and are more or less there for the two characters to interact in a lovey-dovey manner/do cute, sweet things together.
    Godmodding — A character whose abilities are limitless. Often acts of forcibly causing something to happen, i.e. making someone else’s character move without consent, is godmodding.
    Headcanon — Something that the individual or fandom believes to be true in the story, show, etc. and it generally makes sense, but hasn’t been confirmed by the creators of the media. More or less, a ‘personal’ canon.
    Hiatus — Where someone is taking an indefinite break (sometimes the length of time is stated) and activity on the blog ceases, meaning there are no posts/updates.
    IC — In character. That relating to what occurs in game/post by the characters.
    NPC — Non-playable character. This is when the player controls the actions of a character that may not be tied to the story permanently, such as pedestrains, waiters, office workers, etc. These may also be side characters that are tied to the story, though only played and controlled by one player.
    OOC — Out of Character. Discussions that are done between the players and do not directly consist of the actions happening in the game.

    #1 Sir Basil, Sep 5, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2016
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