MMO Plot Running

It's starting to look like I may end up being the plot writer for a roleplaying guild (secondary to our main guilds on Argent Dawn) on the new European World of Warcraft server, Moonglade. I've been thinking a bit about the challenges this presents, and they're, to borrow a term from Marketing, unique.

Essentially, you have to write a series of events (which may or may not turn into a Real Plot) for an arbitrary number of players, very few to none of whom can commit to being present at any given time more than a few days away, and you have no monsters, control over the world, or NPCs - unless, of course, you set in and level new characters to use as NPCs. Neither can you give out rewards unless you got them yourself from somewhere - and the very nature of WoW's reward system means that an awful lot of the things you can get yourself, you can't give away. On top of all this, you have to stay true to the background story of the world, or you'll end up being contradicted by NPCs and other players.

On the other hand, you can expect a bit more cooperation from the players than you normally would in a table-top game, and they'll generally plot and scheme among themselves as they would in a LARP. And, of course, you don't have to deal with the rules.

I've been running more tightly planned and plotted fantasy campaigns of late, but this one looks like it might be more controlled again. It should be interesting, if it goes ahead.

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Posted by Drew Shiel at November 16, 2005 2:08 PM

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