Proper nutrition is essential for a healthy body and mind. More and more, we are discovering that there are guidelines to eating right, and that these also vary to a certain degree from person to person. Not everyone has the same body chemistry or metabolism. Still, it is important to get all of one’s basic food groups to stay healthy. The same is true for roleplay. No, I don’t mean corn is essential to RP. Just as with food groups, there are essential RP nutritional groups. I’m going to talk to you about the six RP food groups and why each is important to your roleplay. From this, you should be able to devise an RP diet that will not only help you see just what you like and what makes your RP healthy, but may also help you find other people who are on the same nutritional plan as you are. The six RP food groups are: Communication Plotting Action Relationships Development Plot Candies Communication: The Grains of Roleplay Communication is essential for sustaining RP. It can lead to creativity, friendship, and give energy for great plotting. However, much like many carbs, it is easy to go overboard. Communicating too much can lead to a bloated RP that is no fun. The best way to handle conversation is just to do what feels right. Talk about things like comfort levels, impending battles, what you want to have happen in a general sense. This isn’t plotting, this is more about just knowing what the other person or people want. Don’t try to cut this out completely. Doing so can lead to a jarring RP experience where neither person knows what the other wants. Plotting: The Veggies of Roleplay Plotting is fun, it is good for you, and, as with OOC communication, it lends itself to RPs running the way you want them to go. Again, having too much can lead to a roleplay that has too much of a planned out feeling and slips away. Not having enough can lead to a shaky RP that has no direction and quickly peters out. For the best results, find a comfort level for plotting during your communication portion of your RP meal. Stick with that, and plot with your group based upon people’s needs. The guideline for veggies is to have five colors of veggies a day. Try to plot at least five different aspects a week, not just what is happening, but why, to whom, how, and future impacts. Action- The Fruit of Roleplay Roleplays need action, whether it be physical, mental, or emotional. Action gives that surge of adrenaline that keeps the game fresh and exciting, and balances the feeling of already knowing what has been plotted. Like fruit, too much can cause your roleplay a feeling of being off balance. It can also cause RP tummy aches, where there just isn’t enough time to recover between action events. Too little, however, will cause a boring RP that feels overplanned and underenthusiastic. Try to find a nice balance. Don’t go overboard here. You don’t need as much action as plotting, though the two go hand in hand. Relationships- The Dairy of Roleplay Relationships are an essential and often forgotten aspect of roleplay. While greatly embraced for onexones, many roleplayers forget to have their characters even talk with one another, let alone try to befriend one another. It is incredibly important for there to be relationships, be they romantic, adversarial, mentoring, or any other sort. Without them, the characters do not gain inner strength and cannot develop as they should. On the other hand, focusing solely on relationships can cause an RP to grind to a boring halt. Try to get at least a small amount of relationship building in your RP. Character Development- The Meat of RP With the other requirements met, we now have character development. While not essential for some people, most people love their character development. Like meat, some like it more raw and rugged while some people like it well done. Some don’t like it at all, preferring their characters to remain the same throughout the RP. Some have to have it and have cravings that can cause them to throw dramatic events at their character. Character development is a personal preference. If you don’t like it, it is important to take steps to still make your roleplay fun while dealing with a flat character. If your character is, however, too dynamic, you may find that your RP becomes one big tragedy and everyone around you suffers for it. Know your preference and what your RP can withstand on this one. Plot Candies: The Sweets of RP Sweets and fats are not an essential food group. However, a little bit of chocolate can help the body, a bit of fat is okay, and as long as you don’t go overboard and throw every single plot candy ever in the same RP, it is alright to indulge yourself. Too much indulgence, however, can lead to addictive, destructive RPs that verge on becoming self insert fodder. Too little leads to an unsatisfied roleplayer who is not getting what they want. Choose a couple plot candies for each RP. Don’t go overboard, unless you know you can handle it and work it off with diligent RPing and use of the other RP food groups. That’s it for our RP food pyramid. So, tell me, what’s on your RP plate?