Introduction - Freshers, Read This First!

Hello, and welcome to the website for Classified, the Roleplaying Games Society freeform game for Michelmas '09 and Hilary '10. If you've never played any sort of roleplaying game before, never fear! Here's a quick introduction. If you're a seasoned roleplayer, feel free to skip to the sections below!

One important thing to be aware of first:

You don't need to read this entire website!

There's a lot of material here, and you certainly don't need to know all of it to start playing. Read only what interests you and what's relevant to a character you might like to play! Good places to start are:

  • This Page - contains a quick-start guide to what you need to know about roleplaying!
  • The Quickstart page - gives you a quick run-through of the important things you need to know about the Classified game world and setting, and how to generate a character.

What Does It All Mean?

There are a few acronyms used throughout the website which might be a little confusing if you've never played before. Never fear - help is at hand! And if you're confused by anything, feel free to email us to ask questions!

  • OOC or OC - Out of Character. Events and circumstances in the real world. For example, Classified sessions take place OOC at Worcester College every Tuesday in term.
  • IC - In Character. Events and people in the Classified gameworld. For example, Classified sessions take place IC on the #CLASSIFIED# VR chatroom every month.
  • GM - Game Master or Game Moderator. Us! The team of people who write, run and maintain the game for your playing pleasure. The first place to turn if you have a question.
  • PC - Player Character. You! The characters that Classified players create and represent in the fictional world. You will usually play the same PC every week through the course of the game, though you may switch or retire a character if you get bored.
  • NPC - Non-Player Character. Us again! Other characters, either part of one of the seven Organisations or unaffiliated, who are present on #CLASSIFIED# but played by a GM. NPCs will usually vary week-to-week, and GMs will often play several NPCs during a game session.

What's a Roleplaying Game?

A Roleplaying game is somewhere between amateur dramatics and collaborative storytelling. You turn up, create a character to play, and play them! There are no scripts or lines, no set outcomes to what will happen - just a setting, a bunch of other characters to interact with, and some GMs to make sure it all runs smoothly.

Classified is specifically a freeform roleplaying game, which means that instead of narrating your character's actions during game sessions, you actually perform them; you turn up each week, walk around and talk to other characters, make deals, trade news, gossip, make contacts, eavesdrop and orate. This doesn't mean you need to be a great public speaker - just be able to speak as your character would!

Combat and other harmful activities aren't possible during Classified game sessions - if anything unusual has to happen which can't be acted out, the GMs will freeze the scene and describe what occurs.

Most importantly - Roleplaying is about having fun and creating stories with other players. Absolutely no experience is required to play the Society Game (indeed, it's designed to offer an easy route in for new roleplayers!), and there will be plenty of supportive people on-hand to help you out if you're confused about any aspect of the game. Turn up and enjoy yourself!

What's Classified?

Every Tuesday, players meet in the Morley Fletcher room of Worcester College . These meetings represent the monthly meetings of like-minded conspiracy theorists on the Virtual Reality #CLASSIFIED# chatroom; players represent a small group of people who have gained access to #CLASSIFIED# either via contacts or via their Organisation. It's definitely not the real world, but it's close enough that you should have no trouble recognizing it.

During these meetings, players meet with other conspiracy theorists from around the world, exchange news, discuss current events and make alliances, hoping that the people they trust are not lying or worse.. The GMs will be on hand, usually playing NPCs, to offer help, advice, information and to keep the game running smoothly.

Each week between games represents one month of IC time - and that's the period during which your character has the most freedom to act; you can use your contacts to find out more about what's going on, feed misinformation to other players or NPCs, or even risk life and liberty trying to discover information yourself! Each week, we ask that players send in a summary of what they want their character to be doing during that month; the GMs will then judge the results of your actions and report back to you on how everything went.

There is a system for these Downtime actions, detailed here - but don't feel you need to memorise it all; we won't be accepting downtime actions for the first week (which is purely devoted to Character Generation!), and we're more than happy to help you out if you're having trouble working out what you want to do in the early weeks!

What Should I Play?

Having a good concept for your character - including some character goals - is the most important part Classified. There is a system of Backgrounds to help get an idea of who and what your character knows - but this is merely a way of representing your ideas. The important thing is to know who your character is and what they want!

If you're stuck for ideas, try checking out the Organisations page, or seeing if any of the Backgrounds take your fancy. Are you a freelance journalist, who has turned up hints of a shady government conspiracy? Have you been working as a network security specialist, and seen strange traffic patterns in the Internet at the dead of night?

Alternatively, turning to fiction is often a good idea. If you’re trying to think of ideas you might like to play with, it often helps to check out books and movies based conspiracy theories and near-future dystopias – though factual knowledge is by no means a necessity; most of what you already know about the real world can be warped and twisted to seem like a conspiracy, or you can pick take inspiration from the conspiracies listed on this site!

If you’re still having trouble, please do ask the GM team or other players for help or inspiration – we almost always have ideas for organisations which need extra players, and there’s almost always a veteran gamer or two looking for an in-game friend, colleague or deadly enemy to play alongside!

The first session on Tuesday 13th October will be for character generation only. Come along, talk to the GMs about your character concept and meet the other players!

introduction.txt · Last modified: 2009/10/09 15:41 by gareth
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