Rules and Advice
Gaming - In General
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April 10, 2011, 10:45 pm

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30 Ways To Be A Good Strolenite


If you follow this advice you will be able to get the best out of this site that it can offer you and you might make some new friends too.

1-Make newcomers welcome

When a new person enters the site, remember that you were once a total newbie and be nice to them. Being snarky and nasty about their first submission could end up driving them away, never to return. Of course there are trolls out  there of the Internet variety and being nice has limits but unless they start trouble, be nice. That newbie could easily become your next friend.

2--Don't put submissions down

More so in the case of newcomers (see #1) don't vote down a submission just because it's not like something you yourself would vote, or because others have voted it down before you get there if you really think you can see something good in it. Following the herd blindly is not always a good idea. Most people put a lot of effort into their first submission.

3-But don't vote them high just to be nice.

Just because most people take a lot of time and trouble over their submissions it does not mean that all will, and from time to time you may come across submissions that are clearly a Bad Example . One of my own submissions is there *blushes* Don't be afraid to vote to give it a 1 if that is what it really deserves, but make sure if you give it a low vote you say why you voted it so low so that lessons can be learnt from it.

4-Quality matters far more then Quantity

One really good five star submission is better then a hundred one and two star submissions in the minds of your fellow Strolenites. What matters is the effort you put into what you submit here, not the sheer number of your submissions.

5-Be original

If it has not been done before or has a radical new twist, then it is very welcome here on Such submissions have a bigger chance of a high vote then the latest version of a magic sword or a dark elf. Not that swords and elves should not be submitted here but the best things are brand new.

6-Avoid things like D6

It won't by itself ruin a good submission if you mention gaming terms like D6 in it, but it can make a submission jar and jolt the readers out of the fantasy that you are creating for them. So do your readers a favor and leave such things for the gaming forum.

7-Take part in gaming

Taking of gaming, try and join a new game on this site's gaming board. Do it the right way-don't barge into an ongoing game but try and start a new one or join a game that is just starting with the consent of the others. You might really enjoy it and it will help you find new friends on this website.

8-Hang out in the chatroom

Now I am the first person to admit that the chatroom in this site is left empty for long periods of time. But it is well worth waiting in there whilst you work on a submission. Sooner or later someone will come and chat to you and others will often follow and that way you can really get to know people here and make friends with them.

9-Rework failed Submissions

If one of your submissions turns out to be badly done and gets low marks, you can always put it back in work and rework it, like a blacksmith forging a masterwork sword. I made a sub that got very low marks and reworked it here 3840 and it got five votes and a 4.5. Even bad examples have been reworked into submissions of genius, from the unpromising Arrkrash rose the Ghost of Arrkrash which was far better, proof that even the worst of submissions can become something worth reading.

10-Give others ideas

If you have ideas but don't have the time to write them down or don't think you could write them well enough, share them with others. This whole submission is somebody else's idea, done with their permission. Someone else might make really good submissions using your ideas.

11-But don't steal

It's one thing to take ideas willingly given, it's another thing to steal someone's ideas that they are working on, and worse still to copy and paste someone's ideas from the Internet and post them on other sites as your own. It's not clever and it may result in you being declared persona not grata and bring The Banhammer crashing down upon you,casting you into the outer darkness of the gaming community in general.

12-Create a whole new imaginary world

If you have not done so already, create an imaginary world of your own. Start small and build it up over time. It will provide many submissions for this site, is something to do when you are bored, and however lowly you might be in real life, it is somewhere you can be powerful and whatever you say is obeyed. You are the God or Goddess of your imaginary world.

13-Map that world

Once it has been created, get some paper and a pencil and map that world of yours both for your own fun and self esteem and to use if you decide to set a game in that world so that you know where your PCs are going. Some people just make rough maps, others take a lot of time and end up hung on their owner's walls as works of art in their own right.

14-Try and Start a game based in that world

Once you have your world properly formed, try and get a role-playing game set up in it for your fellow members of to enjoy with you.

15-A world can never be detailed enough when building it

When you're building it for yourself, feel free to put everything you want in it, to dot the i's and cross the t's and create everything of any interest, even things that would never be gamed at all. It can take years to fully develop a world and even then there are often little things to add in like what kind of halberds the royal guards use and the color of the princess's underpants.

16-Create stories based on your worlds

When there are enough of your submissions you can create a complex imaginary world with them. When  that happens it is possible to write stories based in that world. My only 5/5 on this site so far at the time of writing is one of those stories. At best you might be able to publish one of these stories for money;not many can but it is possible. At the least it is something to work on if you are bored and the others here will like reading it.

17-But don't as a GM bog down your RP with unneeded stuff

There is world building  and there is roleplaying and it is important not to let the two get mixed up. World building is when you are making it for yourself, with roleplaying other people are involved and so it is important not to bog it down too much or your PCs will get bored and the roleplay will collapse in ignominy and rancor.

18-Don't rush things

Just as your PCs don't want to be bored with petty details they don't want to be rushed through it either. They want enough description to be able to *see* the world that their game is based in within their mind's eye for the maximum amount of enjoyment.

19-Don't god mod

God-modding is not when the GM plays the part within the rp of a God or a Goddess, which can be interesting, but when he or she puts words into the mouths of the PCs or preforms actions of theirs as if they were NPCs, which PCs find hugely annoying. "I  throw an apple pie at you" is not god modding as the PC can try to dodge or deflect the flying pie heading for their face. "I throw an apple pie at you and it splats in your face" is god modding as the PC has no chance to try and avoid the unwanted pie.Avoid   god-modding as much as you can or noone will want to roleplay with you.

20-The more you put in the more you will get out of it 

That goes for anything be it right or wrong. The more effort you put into this site, the more people will vote highly on your submissions and want to roleplay with you and the more you can get new friends.

21-Put effort into what you write 

Take the advice of Moonhunter, one of the best members on this site. Put real effort into what you create and at the very least it will get you an extra half mark and your submission will avoid only earning a one or a two. At best you might end up creating a masterpiece Golden Submission.

22-Practice makes Perfect 

The more you practice at something the better you will get at it, be it singing, martial arts, or creating articles. So even if your first submission fails, don't be put off by it, keep calm and carry on. And sooner or later you will start to create some really good submissions that you can justifiably feel proud of.

23-Don't flame or spam 

Spam is bad and a breach of nettiqutte and everyone hates it, although moderate advertising in the right place or a link in your sig is not spam. Flaming is worse then spam. Flaming annoys other members, causes trouble on the site and can lead to the mods or admin cracking down on the firestarter.

 24-Write a 30

Make one of your submission a 30. You will get a lot of fun out of it and it will help you hone your creation skills, as it is quite hard to create thirty different types of thing and make them original.

25-Learn from the works of others

Find the Golden Submissions on this site, the best of the best, and you will find out what people here really like in a submission. Then with enough time and trouble taken (see #22) you too might be able to some make a submission that becomes Golden in it's own right.

26-Stay at com as long as you can

The longer you stay, the more submissions you will both make and vote on and the more Experience Points (XP) you will earn. The more XP you earn the more votes and privileges on the site you will have. Each vote earns you XP and a really good submission can earn you 40XP or more. The more you take part the better the site will become for you.

27-Make the occasional gift sub for others

Making an occasional gift sub once in a while will be a quick way to make friends, and if you are lucky you might have a gift sub made for you in return.

28-But remember you come first

Whilst it is nice to help others with ideas, collaboration and even perhaps gift submissions remember that you are ultimately here to please yourself and to create your own submissions and worlds.

29-Fight Mathom

Mathom, the God of Delays is an immensely powerful god, weakened only by his inability to turn his powers of procrastination to his own advantage. Given the chance he will make you miss Quest deadlines, jam your submissions firmly In Work and even try and stop you voting on the submissions of others. He is angry at his inability to get anything purposeful done and jealous of those who can, so he uses his power to try and stop them succeeding in all manner of ways, from real life distractions, to sending your completed submission flying off into the ether instead of showing up on, to making you doubt your submissions will be liked by other people. He would paralyze the whole world if he could in a miasma of sloth and laziness and has to be fought at all costs.

30-Have fun

Last but certainly not least, have fun. Enjoy the submissions of others. Take pride in your own submissions as they grow in both quantity and quality. Make new friends here. Take part in Quests and roleplays. Keep the baleful influence of Mathom at bay. Write stories. And take advantage of everything that this site has to offer you.

















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Comments ( 17 )
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Voted Mourngrymn
April 10, 2011, 22:59

I was hoping for a tad more from this when I first saw the title, and seeing that I tend to not enjoy most 30 subs I began reading this with trepidation. However, with a few events happening lately this sort of hit home so I read it regardless and find it rather helpful. Someone should have put this up long ago.

I applaud you Cheka for writing this, as only a few of the original hard core Strolenties will appreciate this for what it really is. Kudos.

Black Jack Rackham
April 11, 2011, 8:07

Another "thank you" for the submission.  I've been lurking for years now (occasionally poking my head out like this) and keep meaning to add something but never seeming to find the time (mostly rl writing keeps me away).

Right now, however, I'm working on a series of Champions adventures (set in the Golden Age) which I think just might be perfect for what you've described (and it's about time that I moved beyond first level here).

Thank you again for your post.


Cheka Man
April 11, 2011, 9:01

Black Jack, it appears you forgot to vote on it. :(

Voted Black Jack Rackham
April 11, 2011, 10:59

Fixed that for you.


Voted Scrasamax
April 11, 2011, 16:46
I am impressed Cheka, well done sir
Voted axlerowes
April 11, 2011, 16:57
Normally I hate meta-subs (aka subs about writing submissions, subs about about writing submissions about writing submissions subs about stubs and so on) but this one is really helpful. Perhaps because I am only an on again/off again strolenite, I have had some trouble in expressing to others how the site should work. Expressing what it means to "play right" or "play write" for that matter...this says just that clearly and completely. Thankyou Checka 5/5
April 11, 2011, 17:28

What is a gift sub (#27)?

Voted Pieh
April 11, 2011, 18:38

Good work, Cheka. A few very nice examples. Though, I have to wonder about #4 as it is written. I don't think you should hold back on submitting just because an idea might not be a perfect 5., I happen to prefer reading 3s or 4s, but can agree that a mass of 2s is a bad idea. If you post something and it flops big time, take a look at it, see why, and readjust/reevaluate your writing and content.

Again, good work, Cheka.

Voted valadaar
April 11, 2011, 19:31

Indeed - this is a good 30 to have here. I'd echo Pieh on #4, as sometimes perfect is the enemy of good, and tends to allow Mathon to triumph.

Voted Ramhir
April 11, 2011, 21:39

Well done, Cheka (5/5). Something like this has been needed for a long time.

I agree with the others on #4. Making something perfect usually means that it never sees the light of day. Aim for it, but submit the 3s and 4s that are the best you can do at that time, and then learn from the crits.

I've been Getting Away From It All (working in the garden, getting River Marked by Patricia Briggs (great author of urban fantasy) and working frantically on a big scenario that began last week) and your sub reminded me that I needed to get back here. Thanks.

Voted Old Dreamer
April 11, 2011, 22:06

Thank you for clarifying much of the mysteries of the citadel. Greatly appreciated. Although I too wonder what a "gift-sub" is...

Voted EchoMirage
April 12, 2011, 3:44

Thank you Cheka for summing up so many important aspects so concisely.

I just read this, and will read it a few times more.

As for the gift sub - methinks it may be something taking place in another player's setting, a story involving another's submitted NPC, or ...?

Cheka Man
April 12, 2011, 11:01

A gift sub is writing something for someone else.

Voted Silveressa
July 18, 2011, 22:05

Useful and pertinant, the tips here can help make everyones time spent within the Citadel memorable; thanks for writing this up Cheka.

Voted Dossta
June 27, 2012, 15:44
I come back to this occasionally, and it is still sound advice. Have an HoH, and my patented "Smashing Sub of the Day" award.
Voted OmegaDraco
June 27, 2012, 16:16
Wow! The HoH brought this to my attention, and this is really useful! I'm still fairly new to Strolen's, but I an unexplainable desire to be a good Strolenite.

In addition to being a good and useful sub, you threw in bits of humor that kept reading enjoyable. I didn't even notice how far I had gotten until I was done. Much appreciated!
Voted EmilioV
July 28, 2012, 10:14
An article I will be taking note of.


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