This site is a game. A Role-Playing Game. We play it out in literary form (as opposed to post-per-move style) but even so we do have some rules on how to play. First some terms:
Character: This is the persona of the player in the game. They are developed by the player with certain story ideas in mind. While your character may interact with another character in the game (usually in the form of a "collab") nobody besides the creating player controls the actions of any character.
Supporting Character: Supporting characters are the bit-players of any given storyline. They populatre the world in a way that makes it more believable. They do not, however, carry storylines (unless they are villains). Most supporting players are created to supplement a given character's background or story. It is considered polite to ask permission before doing anything particularly drastic to a given supporting character from the person who created it, but it isn't really a rule.
Storyline: This is any given character's journey. Storylines may be something very personal or something that affects all of the character's lives. But it is generally not something that involves all of the other characters in its resolution. As a general rule unless all of the characters in the game aren't involved in the storyline it isn't a season plot.
Season Plot (aka Big Bad): This is a storyline that directly affects every character in the game. These plotlines are used as a time-keeping device that drives towards a logical conclusion. once the Season plot is resolved then all the individual storylines are encouraged (but not required) either end on a cliffhanger or resolve logically.
"Collab" aka Collaboration: When two or more players pool to write a story page involving their characters it is called a collab. Generally a chat is used to do this although it can be done through email, PMs or other means. Both players agree on a time and a place for the encounter. We use a modified "semaphore" system to signal starts and stops. See the Collaboration page for more information.
The Rules Themselves
- A Character is only controlled by a single player. No other player can write actions for a player without their permission. If a player leaves the game then their character is considered "Supporting" and becomes communally controlled.
- Players are expected to write and write frequently. As a general rule you are expected to post some story elements at least once every two weeks. This isn't a hard and fast rule, but if you are AWOL for an extended period without some sort of communication (say to tell us you are traveling for instance) then you may get dropped from the game.
- Storylines wrap up with the Season Plot. You can end your storylines in one of two ways: Resolve the storyline by bringing it to a logical conclusion. or Leave the storyline on a cliffhanger (a dramatic and tense end that leaves the reader waiting for the outcome). Please don't just leave storylines hanging. If you introduce some sort of dramatic conflict to your character please have a plan in mind to bring it to a close by the end of a season.
- Season Plots should be decided in advance by the collective group. Everyone is expected to contribute to the Season plot in some way (either in a collab or solo post). Ideally we should have all of the wrinkles ironed out as to how a plot can be resolved but we can leave the particulars of who and when vague. Season plots are generally designed to run for less than a month of game time.
- Don't steal outright. Borrowing plot elements, ideas, and set-dressing is fine. Most of the mythology of this game is lifted from Buffy and Angel. But we have changed it so that it isn't identical and it isn't word-for-word copied from the source. If you want to borrow something from another source then do so in a way that it either isn't immediately identifiable or can't be considered plagerism.
- Don't cross fandoms. I love White Wolf games as a much as the next guy but Buffy and Angel vampires aren't the same as the ones in the World of Darkness. They also don't sparkle and they don't all have souls (although some of them do). Werewolves, Demons, Magic and Ghosts were all covered in the source series and so should be used according to that model as much as possible. If you create something new then post how it works so we all can see if it fits. We will make suggestions as a group to prevent mary-suism from taking over.
- Be respectful as you can of other people's creations. That applies to things we create ourselves. If you don't like a particular player's style then don't collab with them. But don't sabotage them in the game either. If a particular player becomes a problem they will be dealt with collectively and not by any one player (or moderator).
- Have fun! We want everyone to enjoy this game either as a reader or as a player. Let's enjoy creating the world together!