This one I see quite often. People, please be considerate to others and refrain from foul and crude language. It's something that I'm sure many people (including me) do not want to see when they are playing to relax and have fun. If you wouldn't say it in front of your kids, don't say it here. Also, if you have a dispute with another player, cursing at him is NOT the solution. It will only make matters worse.
It should be generally known that weapons should not be drawn at all times. This especially applies to cities and settlements, and also the farmlands, where it is generally peaceful. If there is some hostility going on, then it's permissable, of course, to defend oneself, but overall, please keep them sheathed. Remember also that the Flaming Fist HAS the authority to request that your weapons be put away, so please don't be all offended (whether IC or OOC) if that is asked of you.
- Others Do Exist
Remember that even though you cannot see them, other people besides PCs do exist. For this reason, it may not be wise to speak of secret plans within a city without whispering. As a DM, if I catch this, it is possible I may have an "person" overhear. Also, in regard to others being about, one should not stop to speak in the middle of roads and force others to walk around through the grass to get by. The roads are meant for traveling, so those who wish to idle should be the ones that step off to the side. This applies to both cities and roadways.
- Animal Companions
Animal companions, though they may be valuable to one's existence out in the wild, are entirely inappropriate in cities. Imagine what the commoner would think when he sees a person walking about in Baldur's Gate with a wolf or boar at his heels. Along the roads it would be more understandable, but do remember that it is not just adventurers who have seen these things before that travel. Keep in mind that many people would feel very uncomfortable, if not frightened, when having to be next to one. Good rangers, don't scare your neighbors! Evil ones would be more inclined to do so, and if it's within the personal RP of that one PC, then fine.
In my opinion, this one is much worse than animal companions. I dread seeing trees, elementals, and other such things scooting down the road. Druids, are nature people, and thus out in the woods, that is fine, but there it is expected. To walk around in shapechanged form along the roads is to ask for people to run away, the Flaming Fist to attack, etc. Again, I wouldn't expect someone of a good or neutral nature to exhibit this behavior in front of everyone.
As for non-druids shapeshifting, this would be even worse. Shapeshifting into devil or gargoyle form and walking down the road is asking for trouble. There have been people who have done this, then complained when the Flaming Fist attacked. The simple answer is, don't do it! If I see this along the main road, I just may have the Flaming Fist attack (and overwhelm) the offending party.
Much of what was said above applies to this, but even more so. Balors, Undead, and such cannot be brought along without attracting notice. I made mention of the Flaming Fist above. I want to remind people that even if a DM is not about, or PCs members are not online, the Flaming Fist still DO patrol the roads. For sake of RP, please do not wander the cities and the tradeway with a balor or such at your heels.
Much as weapons should be sheathed in the city, spellcasting should not be done in such areas. Simple ones, such as light are permissible but please do not buff your character inside Baldur's Gate or while standing next to Jorn and his chickens. Obviously such places (as right next to the transition) would be appropriate to do so. In Beregost, for example, the exit is a little ways out of town and it is a good idea to prepare before exiting as one can be ambushed immediately, but don't turn yourself into a Christmas tree in the market square.
- Wal-Mart Employees Have Name Tags - PCs Do Not
Too often players go entirely by the name tag above a character's head to determine who it is. While it may be handy to know, remember that people change clothing, wear helmets/masks, or are just plain UNKNOWN to you. Automatically using the name without thinking of any of the above mentioned reason why NOT to can sometimes spoil RP. Obviously everyone will make mistakes every now and again, but to help minimize this, try using the in game journal [ J ]to keep track of who you character knows, especially if you play more than one.
- Outta My Way! Coming Through!
Sometimes I think of other players as the road-runner. They come out of nowhere running full-tilt down the road. Of course, that is where the resemblance ends. Nobody honks a horn in this game, but many sure do fly right by. Now, this isn't so much the problem, because people are free to run until they drop. The problem lies in the fact that people are in such a hurry to get where they are going (probably grinding kobolds) that they will plow right through a group of people as if they do not exist. No "excuse me" beforehand. No "pardon me" afterwards. Though not major, this does become annoying. Make the effort to click the mouse a couple extra times to navigate around people instead of playing Faerunian Bumper Cars.
Sneaking can be very useful and good for RP if done properly. A ranger blending in with the wilderness, or a thief silently slipping into the shadows of a dark alley all work well. But do not extend this to unreasonable locations. For instance, do not try to sneak into the Flaming Fist Garrison or a Temple and assume nobody sees you because they are all NPCs. In all likelihood, even the best of stalkers could not go unnoticed in such places as these, and as such, it is bad RP to attempt something of the sort.
- Avoid Ninja-Looting
Now what is ninja looting? It can be done a variety of ways, but it's basically taking loot that is not yours without even RPing it, or snatching up as much of the goodies from a DM event rather than taking one apiece or rolling a sleight of hand vs. spot checks to see if one can actually do it beneath all those watching eyes. In other words, it is called taking the rewards of another's work and it should not be done.
- Stealing Kills
This is walking up to a person who is battling a monster and killing it without any other reason than to just get the XP. There are plenty of spawns elsewhere. Of course there are RP situations in which helping another defeat something can be done, but those situations should be apparent at the time.
- Common Sense
As in everything else, common sense should rule the day for RP. If I failed to mention anything important here, that doesn't mean that it's necessarily perfectly acceptable to do it. Just think before you take action. I don't try to force others to RP if they do not want to, but I do ask that these points are taken into consideration for the benefit of those of us who do RP. It takes little to no effort to regard them and it really helps the gaming experience of others.
Thanks for reading. If you have good suggestions to add, I would be happy to put them in the master list.
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