The (Arbitrary) Seasons of Settings [Text Wall]

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Shas'Ui, Jan 27, 2016.

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  1. A Western in Winter,
    Fantasy in the Fall.
    A Summer of Sci-Fi,
    Modern works with all.

    (tl;dr at the bottom in bold)
    Because I'm getting back into Argh~Pee, I've been drafting a bunch of different arc ideas recently. I got'sa humans-vs-plague plot, a War of the Roses-esque Game of Thrones inspired politicofuckalo, and some strange conglomeration of a story mimicking current world events through abstract metaphors-- the plot and formation of these is going fine, but there's something nagging on my mind that's been riding my ass since I first realized that people actually have to be attracted my RP's.

    That, problem, of course, being how settings seem to have an "in" season and an "out" season.

    I'm going off of personal experiences, so I'm more than willing to be corrected, but I'm not a person that's loyal to one specific setting or time period. Sometimes I like hunting down heretical xenos in space, but sometimes I like performing a fantasy-bounty hunt for demonic booty that's almost analogous in content. It's kinda like food, in a sense that you can sometimes be hungering for burgers 'cause you've had way too much Panda Express recently. As a licensed Observer of Inconsequential Things (PhD), my theory is that the type of Roleplays we like to involve ourselves in directly correlate to the general mood of society that permeates around us. Let me try to explain through an example.

    Now, imagine dear Montezuma as not a singular person, but an entire crowd. Hundreds of millions went to see the new Star Wars, and many of the more creative of us who've seen it have probably been either consciously or subconsciously influenced by the huge amount of hype permeating it to start wanting to get a piece'a'da action ourselves. To make sure I had at least some backing on this, I searched for Star Wars in the Sci-Fi RP tab from December 18th (release date of The Force Awakens) and found a decided increase in the frequency of in-universe RP after said date. While things like the Shadow of Mordor (fantasy) and Mad Max (post-apoc) are too far in the past for me to get a good source for, I get the hinting feeling that the scenario listed above repeats itself with their respective settings.

    Perhaps I'm just putting too much thought into it, I've just been rubbing bullshit onto a keyboard for this entire post, but I feel as if there's too strong of a correlation between current culture and what people want in an RP setting to ignore when creating something you really want other people to have an interest in and enjoy. Of course, there will always be an arbitrary variable from person to person; some people just outright enjoy Sci-Fi more, yet these would be outliers in comparison to the general public. From your experience in Roleplay and looking over trends, do you think that settings can have "seasons," periods of time wherein they're more popular?

    My second question, to get a feel for what's going on in Iwaku at the moment, is what type of setting you currently believe to be á la mode, or in style. This doesn't necessarily mean "What type of setting have I seen the most recently?" I'm thinkin's more along the lines of "What type of setting do I feel is most attractive right now?"

    tl;dr: Researching the frequency of in-universe RPs before and after a huge hype train (like the recent Star Wars surge) leads me to believe that RP settings are more popular if they follow recent cultural trends, what do you think? What do you feel is the most exciting setting currently?

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  2. First, I think this is more appropriate in Roleplay Discussion.

    Second, it's natural for genre's to spike and unspike at times, especially when the most profitable movie of all times is a new release.

    As for Iwaku's hype's specifically?
    I can't say, I only join RP's friends of mine are hosting.
    So I pay relatively little attention to the Interest Check threads.

    And for personal preferences?
    I'd have to say Sci-Fi for me. Technology is awesome.
    #2 Gwazi Magnum, Jan 27, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2016
  3. ......I thought that "a la mode" meant "there's ice cream on it".

    Ehhh on a more serious note, I don't start/join new RP's often enough to notice this kind of thing. I'm pretty sure that, in the entire amount of time I've been on Iwaku, I've been in a small enough number of roleplays that I could probably count them all on one hand... XD

    At any rate, I guess it's totally plausible that people can feel more inspired for certain genres based on what they're seeing and what they like out in pop culture at large. But ummmm unless it's something really big (like Star Wars), I feel like it would be difficult to really gauge much of a difference in what types of RP's are really "in" following certain things being popular. And I think it's especially true on a site like Iwaku where I don't know if the userbase is really large enough to accurately measure that sort of thing.

    Edit: And I think people's tastes are definitely too fickle to really accurately say that certain genres are regularly more popular during certain seasons.
    #3 Kagayours, Jan 27, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2016
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  4. Yep. This definitely happens, though I don't think it applies to the majority of role players. I think it applies to a few role players, who generally have a larger issue of being unable to remain focused on any particular topic for more than a couple months. You know the type. They flare up with several posts a day for a few days, all excited for a new role play, and then just vanish into thin air without a trace, only to join another role play with the same level of enthusiasm.

    I think for the majority though, they have a set list of preferences they seek out. "I want to do Fantasy," so they do Fantasy, for instance. While pop culture can influence their tastes (ex: The entire fandom section), it's not the sum total of their tastes, nor does it necessarily fade as the popularity of the work in question fades. There's a Naruto RP that's gone on for over four years here, entirely irrelevant as to the rise and fall of Naruto's overall popularity.

    For instance, even with a big Sci-Fi release like Star Wars, you'll still see new role plays popping up for people seeking high school settings, or 1x1's that want to pursue unambiguously carnal and banal content "adult art." Pop culture influences, but does not eradicate, currently existing trends. It will sway those who have no loyalty and no patience, but even without pop culture, they would still have no loyalty and no patience to any particular project, and whimsy would be their guide instead of trends. :ferret:
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