Personal Preference: Location Descriptions?

Discussion in 'ROLEPLAY HELP' started by Absyinthe, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. Hello folks, I hope you're having a good day. I have a question for any of you.

    How much detail, would you want to know with a world's location and it's descriptions? What are your preferences, I would love to hear about them. ^.^

    Do you want every detail about the roleplay locations? Or do you prefer to be surprised in the IC?

    Let me know! ^.^
  2. If the world is significantly huge, I'd prefer to learn the basic descriptions and information about a location, such as average population, popular spots, and if needed, type of government and economy, as well as the name of the leader and a brief description about them. If the world is simply a city or small town, I prefer to learn about popular spots, as well as locations in general, such as the main school. A brief description is my main thing; I don't want to be told every single thing about a particular location. I enjoy exploring, but I also like having a bit of basis.
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  3. The level of detail depends on a lot on the scale of the world, as espoir mentioned above. The relation between the player characters and the particular areas of the setting is also important.

    If it's all taking place in a single city, then plenty of detail is needed up front. If the player characters are from that city, or have lived there for a long time, then they need a lot of info to be able to accurately portray a character familiar with the place.

    If it's a world with many locations, then just some broad brush strokes about the places can be fine. Basically anything that someone who has never visited a particular place ought to have heard of its reputation should be the base level for how much information you give up front. If any character is from that place or somewhere nearby, then maybe give a bit extra that you note is stuff only that character ought to know, or just straight up PM it to the player as secret info for them to know as extra for them to build into their history or just for them to know in case it becomes relevant later.

    Regardless of the scale you should definitely make sure there are surprises in store for the players. It's no fun if you know absolutely everything going into a place. There's no reason to explore, no reason to feel excited about finding some place, and it just kind of takes away a lot of the fun for people like myself who enjoy good worldbuilding.
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  4. The answer for me is: it varies. I like to know everything my character would know about the world, and nothing about what he didn't know and that I wouldn't need to know to realistically portray my character in the setting. For example, I'd like a lot of details about my character's city or region, about the customs and superstitions of said city, a little about its history, the descriptions of its places, etc. When the world isn't really that developed to have these informations, then I'd feel free to create some of those things as I go along. At the same time, I like the feeling of discovery, of surprise and of the unexpected. I try not to bother with things my character doesn't know, because when they discover it, then I'll be surprised as well.

    So I guess it varies on how much creative freedom you want to give your players - are they allowed to create customs and places of their city, maybe even an entire city? They need less details. Are they supposed to portray their characters realistic in an already developed world? They need more detail.

    When someone is describing a room/place our characters are in, I automatically allow myself to fill in any details not described (unless the game has a DM/Storyteller/GM, of course, then I'll only ask what my character can see or sense). So the amount of details also depends on how you want the scene to go.

    Summing it up: I love details, as they give flavor to the world and how I create/play my character. However, too much detail (every single plant described, even if they are the same as our own plants, every color of every furniture in a room, etc) can get bothersome and tiresome. Too little (saying the character are in a room, but not describing at least what kind of furniture is in there), and, unless you give people the freedom to create details as they go along, the ability to realistically RP becomes hindered.

    I think you should first think what kind of details are important for your players to know so they can realistically interact with the environment they are in and describe those things only. If something is missing, someone will surely ask. Never, however, reveal something the characters cannot see/hear/smell/know.

    Just my thoughts on the matter. :)
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