dnd 3.5e – As a girl how can I roleplay a male character better?

The answer to this would be heavily dependent on the culture and time period involved. Expectations of nobility and controls imposed on younger people vary heavily on those two factors.

That said, let me offer some advice here.

Being with other men in game isn’t a problem but interacting with women is. Savoir-vivre helps but I still find myself never too pleased with what I say or do.

Yeah, that’s pretty much how your character should feel when interacting with women too. I mean, most people have self-confidence problems, and men are certainly no exception to that. Self-criticism and doubt can factor heavily into a believable character. Especially as a teenaged character. Even though societies gave more responsibilities to people at a younger age in the past, biology hasn’t changed that much.

Keep in mind that depending on the culture and time period, nobility might well have a highly distorted view of commoners. Maybe your character was told all sorts of horror stories about common people–not even just by adults above them, but by their peers who didn’t know any better than they did. If your character spent their whole life stuffed away in a manor by over-protective noble parents dealing with other nobles and a combination of soldiers and courtiers in service of their father… well that’s bound to leave someone fairly ill-prepared to deal with life outside of those confines.

Certainly such a character probably shouldn’t view the commoners he’s likely to encounter as an adventurer as equal or worthy of respect beyond that required to achieve his immediate ends–even if, in fact, they are equivalently valuable human beings. This tension could create a lot of resentment towards your character by the women he interacts with, and by others in the party who might not be from a noble origin.

And it really shouldn’t be relegated to women–if the character takes the presumably common class-oriented view on nobility/commoners, then it would be applied to everyone he meets. Everyone he meets would have to be viewed through the lens of class. Including other members of the party. While that doesn’t have to be represented as condescension, it can easily be represented as resentment towards PCs and NPCs whom your character recognizes as more skilled or powerful than their station ought to allow them (in the noble world-view).

Status, image, and power tended to be important to nobility. While it may not be critical to your character (after all, people who would choose the adventuring life of a d&d Player Character would not be your typical person at all), it would certainly be important to the people who raised him and to the subset of society with whom he interacted with for the first 16 years of life before going adventuring. That’s bound to have an effect of some sort. Maybe it only tinges his views, or maybe it is a deeply ingrained set of responses. Maybe your character accepts that view, maybe he rejects it. But that sort of thing is bound to have a serious influence on everything from his relations with other party members to his interactions with women.

Another thing to consider might also be his family’s reaction to his decision to head off adventuring rather than focusing on his duties.

roleplaying – As a man, how can I roleplay a woman better?

I play female characters in campaigns about 25% of the time (and about 100% of the time as a GM), so this is something I’ve worked on/thought about over my gaming career.

First, there’s the general “How do I depict anything different from myself at the gaming table?” This is often a problem not just with crossgender play. I remember an activity I did for one long term campaign, I had the players draw the other characters as they saw them. One player, Laura, drew Dave’s character as a scrawny little guy. In reality he was a huge buff bodybuilder type. His “big fighter” character had converted and become a cleric before Laura joined the group, and so all she knew was how he presented himself now, which seemed bookish to her. He had established his look with the original players but was failing to carry it through in-game such that a new player (not that new, she had been in the game like a year by this point) didn’t have an accurate mental picture of him. He was miffed, but I reminded him that people only know what they see, and in an RPG they only “see” what comes out of your mouth.

So the advice I gave to him is equally applicable to crossgender play. Use opportunities to lift weights/flirt with boys/show off whatever is distinct about your character. Describe yourself from time to time in the third person – “I flex my pecs to show off” or “I toss my long hair and sniff at him.” Make sure and reflect your physical form, gender, dress, and demeanor to the rest of the group enough that they keep it in mind. Props can help, sometimes players choose character portraits and make standees or whatnot so people can “see” them (I’ve used this specifically with crossgender play). Similarly, as a GM I often make character portraits to clip to my screen of NPCs, it reinforces their presence as well as physical details about them including gender. I think 9/10 of the issues with crossgender play in practice aren’t “I’m failing to precisely emulate the female mind,” but are “Frank looks over at me, sees a guy, and just up and forgets the character I’m depicting is a woman.”

The GM can help players with this by “reflecting” the world/NPCs’ views of the PCs back to them, which helps cross-emphasize identity across the group. This helps with a lot more than gender; I’ve lost count the number of times a PC who looks like a glowing gnome with ioun stones whizzing around his head and massive gaping wounds riding a magical beast just wanders up to some peasant and starts chatting them up. It takes them a minute to realize why the peasant shrieks “DEAR CUTHBERT NO” and flees, but then they realize it’s because they’re so badass looking and they tend to like it. There’s right and wrong ways to do this, you don’t want to have every night in an inn be “and here’s the list of dudes that hit on Georgina.” Talk to your GM and say “Hey, using narration and NPCs to reinforce my gender (or whatever!) with the other players would help.” In Dave’s case above I made a note to refer to his huge frame and muscles more often to reinforce it especially since his chosen role was less martial, and that worked out well.

Now on to the deeper stuff. It can be hard to RP someone different, especially a woman, because a lot of folks are quick to criticize. Some people think crossgender play is “wrong” or “weird” in the first place somehow – I take a dim view of the hangups such people must have, but you have to take it into account. But when you do, you can get a lot of criticism that you’re playing wrong or making the character a stereotype.

Now, depicting a stereotype isn’t always bad, depending on your game style – heck, if you’re playing Feng Shui, for example, all the characters are MEANT to be stereotypes you see in action movies. And if everyone’s basically playing characters no deeper than the usual SyFy special starring Eric Roberts, then IMO you’re fine to go “hooker with a heart of gold” or “killer vixen” or whatever stock personality the latest Hollywood blockbuster contains. In these cases, you are making female characters (usually) “more different” because stock characters are all about overemphasizing whatever their distinctive points are (think a lineup of anime characters, the “big guy” is always unrealistically like 2x everyone else’s size, etc.) “I’m the dark and brooding loner!” Stereotypes are often in scope in gaming.

But let’s say you’re playing a more “realistic” (for a variant definition of realistic that includes dragon turtles, of course) game and you want to play a person, not a stock character. There, you don’t want to “different them up” as much. My primary technique is “observe the women in your life, and respond as they would.” (I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve done this and been accused, by a man, of course, of acting out a stereotype, even though I am drawing from an exact real-life situation where the woman I knew did X… But I digress.)

In this way you get away from playing women all the same, based on whatever your preconceptions of “what IS a woman” in some strange abstract sense. I tend to say “Hmm, I want this cybered up space spy to be about 70% my friend Laura, maybe 10% my ex-wife, and 20% Angelina Jolie from that one movie.” Just like with any character, sometimes you have an internalized understanding of their motivations, and sometimes you just have them do things that seem like it’s what someone would do, even if you don’t “get it.”

In the end trying to play women, or any kind of character, in an “agenda-driven” way isn’t good. Every real person in the real world shares some aspects of stereotypes and differences that are “cross type” and then just have miscellaneous things about them that don’t fit or contradict any “type.” Trying to play female characters exactly like they’re male is unsatisfying and a missed opportunity. If the real world was full of one homogeneous gender, it would probably be quite different. Gender and the tensions surrounding it are what generate a lot of the drama in epics, novels, movies, and every other form of art slash entertainment in the world and RPGs are no different.

Our current Pathfinder PC group has a female NPC along who is kinda-but-it’s-not-real-defined the girlfriend of a PC. She’s half-elf, he’s a human. So they were in a town where there were a lot of cross-race couples and she used the opportunity for a “DTR” talk. I as the GM had to depict her well as a woman so that the relationship could develop in a realistic and satisfying way. “So, what do you think about mixed-race relationships?” “Gulp!” Or when they found out she’d been carrying a pair of designer shoes in her adventuring pack “just in case.” Little bits like this, they don’t have to be pervasive, but all the PCs think of her as both female and realistically complex and realized – even with her name being “Sam” and me not doing funny voices, I don’t get any “tell him to magic missile the wraith…”

One of my favorite characters I played was a female, a cleric in the Curse of the Crimson Throne adventure series from Paizo. Sometimes she worried about boys, sometimes she took care of business. Sometimes she was kind and empathetic, and sometimes she was hard. She wasn’t a stock stereotype, but none of the other players ever got confused that I was playing a man either, except once or twice, which to me is the sweet spot between acting too different and acting too not different. She ended up becoming Queen once we deposed the current crazy killy one, so I like to think she had a lot going for her.

My previous female character had been a hard-bitten cybered up con woman in a Silhouette game – they really didn’t have much in common at all. I was drawing on different personality sources of course.

Also, gender isn’t the single biggest issue, being a cyborg or alien or elf or lost race or wildebeest is also a large component of your personality, don’t make it all about gender. But the question’s about gender so I’m focusing on that.

PixelTown – Roleplay Server | Forum Promotion

PixelTown.jpg

https://www.guilded.gg/r/zzDRnvJBzR?i=rdOrzD34

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The king welcomes you to join the amazing new town known as PixelTown! After the Sir Wellington and Sir Xy escaped from a tyrant ruler of their last city they set out to create a town ran by the people, for the people! Start off as one of 4 roles Guard, Scout, Combat Mage, Support Mage, or Ranger as well as chose a job that is available in the town! Gather resources, make unique items, as well as save the town from all threats foreign and domestic!
This server brings some of the best features from your favorite role playing games and combines them into one singular, easy to learn game play! Do daily activities, role play in the live chat, or go on expeditions in our expedition forums! What you do is entirely up to you!

Some threats, and monsters you may face are

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phoenix.png
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Ghosts, Mimics, Phoenixes (legendary rare birds), and vampires of all varieties. There’s a ton of other mobs, but these are just a few you can find when playing!

 

How can I role-play schizophrenia?

I’m currently playing a character in a med-fan setting (Pathfinder for the record), and have recently become schizophrenic. Schizophrenia is the mental disorder characterized by abnormal social behavior, failure to understand what is real and sometimes event hallucinations.

I am quite used to role-play psychotic characters, but I have no idea how to play this one without falling in a ridiculous stereotype.

Please note that schizophrenia is not characterized by multiple personalities. That is a separate (much rarer and more controversial) disorder, known as dissociative identity disorder. Media sometimes confused the two (probably since schizophrenia means “split mind” in Greek), but this question is using the proper meaning of the word.

dnd 5e – How to describe & roleplay past torture, prejudice and gender discrimination without upsetting fellow players too much?

Bring that up on session 0

If you are aware that those themes may upset your fellow players then the best is to handle that before the campaign even starts. Ask them if that’s ok!

If it is not ok, be ready to play another character (you can always save this one for another campaign with different players)

You don’t need to tell them your whole backstory

Your fellow players don’t have to validate your backstory: you only need to know if they are ready to have these themes brought up in their game. “Are you okay with the themes of torture, sexism, …?” There may be some lines (“Absolutely not. I don’t want sexism to be a thing in my games.”), and/or some veils (“I don’t mind if it is implied torture happened somehow, but no description of it, please.”) and you will have to decide whether you try to fit your character within those constraints or simply play something else.

X-card does not work well in your case

X-card does not require preparation and thus works well as a safety net for problematic topic you didn’t anticipate. Still, if you build a character around the concept of “being traumatized by torture” and this is vetoed when it comes up after one session, what are you going to do?

I recently had a similar issue with a character of mine in a one-shot session whose main personality trait was to be flirtatious. Sadly the first interaction I had was with a fellow PC and the player immediately vetoed it. As this trait was basically the whole character’s personality it quickly became boring. On a one-shot it is not that big of an issue, but on a long campaign you don’t want to be stuck with an empty character.

gm techniques – How do I roleplay Prejudice/Xism?

The world is not always nice place, and typically neither are our pretend ones. There are plenty of times in games where Characters may come across others who are prejudiced in some form. Perhaps mechanically, with Shadowrun’s Prejudiced Disadvantage, traditionally, like how Elves and Dwarves tend to dislike each other, or how all Tieflings seem to get disliked on principle.

Now, I’m lucky enough to have a fairly privileged upbringing, so I’ve not had to live through much, if any, prejudice. This does however mean I don’t know how to properly roleplay it, either as with a single character or as a GM showing entrenched prejudive in a society.

Obviously, I would need to make sure anyone I’m plying with is willing to deal with Prejudice before I put it in my game, but I believe defeating it would give them much the same satisfaction as saving the puppy orphanage from destruction, so it’s something I want to include. How then, as a GM, would I present subtle/overt prejudice from individuals or a society in a believable way?

gm techniques – Need some help handling backstories and getting players into roleplay

Step 1 is usually to get feedback.

People play RPGs for different reasons. Some like to RP (at varying depths and styles). Some like to roll dice and knock heads. Some like to sit around with a group of friends and the game is just a vehicle.

What is it they enjoy about the game? What are they — as their characters or as the player — interested in doing? If you’re running a campaign, you probably have some overarching plot, or at least some ideas — find a way to make that coincide with what they already would like to do.

On a more advanced level, setting story hooks is the gift that keeps on giving.

Giving the party a quest to overthrow the evil Duke for a reward? Yeah, they’ll probably do it, reluctantly, if nothing else because they might not have anything else interesting going on.

Introducing them to the evil Duke (or his minions) and making the PCs/players hate them, so that they WANT to go kick his ass? That’s where things get fun.

Go all Game of Thrones on their favorite NPC (cliche but effective) or tie in the backstory of one of the players that is providing them, just to show how it can work. For the Chaotic Greedy PCs (if your group is new, there’s at least one) dangle stories of legendary magic or riches that could be theirs…heck, maybe it’s even true.

Don’t have things just happening around them, make them part of the world.

There’s tons of guides and videos and resources out there for how to engage your players, but generally — especially to those new to the game — you need to, as GM, be setting hooks and providing motivation for the table. A more experienced player might try to help the GM out by grasping at threads or coming up with their own agendas or subplots, but that can take a long time before a player is ready to do that (if ever).

tools – How do you optimise a session-summary workflow for roleplay sessions on Discord?

To create session summaries, I prefer using congregated individual session data. The data I focus on is the number of events, their corresponding dice-rolls, and chat messages to the next event. This workflow enables me to work faster and more conveniently than having all sessions’ data in one place.

I currently export Discords channel-chat-logs from the beginning to the end of a session via the Discord History Tracker. Unfortunately, the output comes in a format that isn’t easy for transferring the data to an .ods sheet, so I end up copying many things manually, which is more work than I can reasonably afford to put in.

So with “the number of events, their corresponding dice-rolls, and chat messages to the next event.” on your mind: How do you optimise a session-summary workflow for roleplay sessions on Discord?

dnd 5e – How do DMs roleplay the shamans in “Danger at Dunwater” from the Ghosts of Saltmarsh adventure book?

I just finished running this section a few weeks ago.

First it helps of you read the whole entry, and remember the entries cannot cover every possible contingency, this section is too dynamic.

A lizardfolk shaman is leading two disciples (lizardfolk) in a short prayer to Semuanya.

If the party arrives here accompanied by friendly lizardfolk, the
shaman initially urges the guards to attack. A successful DC 15
Charisma (Persuasion) check by a character prevents a fight, and
instead the lizardfolk take the characters in custody and take them to
meet the queen.

Next consider there are many ways the characters can reach this area, including ways that do not involve meeting the queen. They could even fight their way here. If the party comes in through the correct entrance and someone in the party speaks draconic, and they think up a good story, they can enter the village normally (read communications and disposition), so there are several ways the can interact with lizardfolk without having talked to the queen.

Also consider lizardfolk are not psychic, it is entirely possible for the party to have spoke to the queen and yet for many lizardfolk to not know that. Even if they have met the queen there is no reason to believe shamans were present.

Next remember from the entry on politics of the lizardfolk,

Opposing that group (mostly covertly, for the rule of the queen
remains absolute) are the traditionalists, led by the shamans. The
shamans believe that allying and intermingling with other races is
contrary to the divine will of their god, Semuanya, and that no good
can come of it.
Consequently, the shamans hate and distrust the
minister, Sauriv, whom they consider to be the prime instigator of
these efforts that go against nature. They dare not move openly
against him, however, since he enjoys the trust and favor of the
queen.

Also notice the DC for getting the shamans to trust the party is higher than any other group or individual.

From this we can conclude that the shamans want to start a fight or at least an incident. They don’t want the party in the village. They see the very presence of the party as an affront to their religion, they dislike lizardfolk who even cooperate with humans. So even if the party arrives with friendly lizardfolk, the shaman tries to create an incident, knowing if the party harms any lizardfolk it will help sway the queen against them. The shaman wants to start trouble and the party has to act to convince the guards not to fight. Remember the guards will not speak common

Personally I love this part because you can use it to show the party how they can easily be tricked into undermining their own goals, if they just react to everything knee jerk.

Remember the entries cannot cover every possible contingency. The village is meant to be a dynamic place with dispositions being changed by the players. Which is why politics and communications is discussed first. Covering every contingency would fill a book just for this one single chapter. If the entry does not fit based on what has already occurred, ignore it, but chances are if the party is in that spot, it is a ploy by the shamans that could work.

dnd 5e – How do people roleplay the shamans in “Danger at Dunwater” from the Ghosts of Saltmarsh adventure book?

I just finished running this section a few weeks ago.

First it helps of you read the whole entry, and remember the entries cannot cover every possible contingency, this section is too dynamic.

A lizardfolk shaman is leading two disciples (lizardfolk) in a short prayer to Semuanya.

If the party arrives here accompanied by friendly lizardfolk, the
shaman initially urges the guards to attack. A successful DC 15
Charisma (Persuasion) check by a character prevents a fight, and
instead the lizardfolk take the characters in custody and take them to
meet the queen.

Next consider there are many ways the characters can reach this area, including ways that do not involve meeting the queen. They could even fight their way here. If the party comes in through the correct entrance and someone in the party speaks draconic, and they think up a good story, they can enter the village normally (read communications and disposition), so there are several ways the can interact with lizardfolk without having talked to the queen.

Also consider lizardfolk are not psychic, it is entirely possible for the party to have spoke to the queen and yet for many lizardfolk to not know that. Even if they have met the queen there is no reason to believe shamans were present.

Next remember from the entry on politics of the lizardfolk,

Opposing that group (mostly covertly, for the rule of the queen
remains absolute) are the traditionalists, led by the shamans. The
shamans believe that allying and intermingling with other races is
contrary to the divine will of their god, Semuanya, and that no good
can come of it.
Consequently, the shamans hate and distrust the
minister, Sauriv, whom they consider to be the prime instigator of
these efforts that go against nature. They dare not move openly
against him, however, since he enjoys the trust and favor of the
queen.

Also notice the DC for getting the shamans to trust the party is higher than any other group or individual.

From this we can conclude that the shamans want to start a fight or at least an incident. They don’t want the party in the village. They see the very presence of the party as an affront to their religion, they dislike lizardfolk who even cooperate with humans. So even if the party arrives with friendly lizardfolk, the shaman tries to create an incident, knowing if the party harms any lizardfolk it will help sway the queen against them. The shaman wants to start trouble and the party has to act to convince the guards not to fight. Remember the guards will not speak common

Personally I love this part because you can use it to show the party how they can easily be tricked into undermining their own goals, if they just react to everything knee jerk.

Remember the entries cannot cover every possible contingency. The village is meant to be a dynamic place with dispositions being changed by the players. Which is why politics and communications is discussed first. Covering every contingency would fill a book just for this one single chapter. If the entry does not fit based on what has already occurred, ignore it, but chances are if the party is in that spot, it is a ploy by the shamans that could work.