Two frequent commenters and contributors–Rhoelyn and Kyraine–brought up to common hurdles to RP in an MMO: Scheduling and Burnout. While solutions for these common complaints have already been discussed, it’s worth discussing them here to figure out how to Problem Solve after one Identifies a hurdle.
Getting everyone together for an RP night isn’t easy. People have a number of obligations–family, friend, work, school, raiding–that take up a fair amount of time. But if people want to RP, they will find a way to make the RP happen. In regards to scheduling, two solutions come to mind: Find a day and stick with it or Add RP to a regular event in game. Before we can implement either solution, we have to determine which is feasible.
The first step is finding who is interested and when they are available. Both of these issues can be addressed with the following question, “Are you interested in RP and when are you free?” Once people announce their intent to RP and they share their schedule–either via email or a forum–than a day and time can be scheduled to conduct all the RP business you want.
Where this can become problematic is having two clusters of free time with little overlap between groups. If the interest is strong, one could have two groups of people running RP. This would allow for parallel stories and create some interesting dynamics when schedules (inevitably) change. One should not start working on the complicated parallel/multiple group story until the schedules are established and RP is occurring regularly.
Solving the schedule problem is relatively simple: Find a time and get people to stick with it. Burnout is more insidious, and it can take a bit of creativity to reignite RP once everyone feels crispy.
At this point in WoW’s history, we’ve been playing for around 7 years. Some people have played their characters to death. Other have just lost interest in the RP they have participated in. Some people may not even know why they’re burned out. In short, this particular hurdle needs to be examined further.
If you’re feeling “meh” about RP these days, you’re going to have to spend some time navel gazing and thinking why this isn’t working for you. Is it the expansion? Is it the people? Is it a lack of follow through from other stories? Is it just time to move on? Is it something else entirely? IF you can’t find the answer on your own, then bring it to the people in your circle. Talk to people about your feelings of burnout. They may have noticed the burnout long before you have.
A few methods to correct the burnout are as follows:
Try a different method to RP
Take a break from WoW
Try and Run and RP event
Let someone else run an RP event.
Once someone Identifies the hurdles, the next step is to figure out the possible solutions. Some of the solutions will work, others, upon review, will only serve to make our lives more difficult. But the pattern remains: Identify the issue, identify solutions to the issue. The next step? Implement.
Questions,comments, vague misgivings? Any specific methods you want to discuss in the comments?