Sharpening my scythe

We’ve got a lot of characters that have been inactive for 90 days or longer.

As of June 1, they’ll become potential targets for a new round of “narrative landscaping.” I’ll start writing them out of the OtherSpace story in episodes of death and destruction that’ll put a close on the character’s story and perhaps generate RP hooks for the friends and enemies they leave behind.

Idle characters may have automatically changed passwords over the months. If you want to log in to save your character but cannot seem to connect to that character, please notify me at jointhesaga@gmail.com and I’ll change the password for you.


8 thoughts on “Sharpening my scythe

  • Alhambra

    I’ve thought about this. Then, I slept on it. Then, I thought about it some more. Then, I slept on it again. Then, I thought about it some more. I still have misgivings, and am expressing them here.

    The actual canon killing of idle PCs will have an effect on three demographics:

    1) People who can not be here: These are people who have been prevented, by lack of internet access, computer problems, health concerns, school, raising children, work responsibilities, familial responsibilities, etc, from coming to play. They may want to return someday, and instead of being welcomed back, they will discover that they have been killed off.

    2) People who can be here, but for whatever reasons won’t: These people will likely hear about what’s happening, time-stamp their characters, and continue to not play.

    3) People who are still here: We, the people who remain, will be given the consequences of the unavoidable deaths of people we’d really like to see again, or people we neither know nor care about. In addition, we will suffer the nagging discomfort that should something happen to us personally and we are unable to play regularly, we, too, will be discarded.

    This is not my yard. I am not staff, I do not own this game. These are my personal misgivings, not demands. But, given the choice…

    I’d rather you didn’t.

    • Brody Post author

      1) Being a father myself, I have some sympathy for this demographic. That said: If I cannot at the very least log on once every 90 days, I just don’t want to be involved. It may matter to *you*, as someone who plays with them, but it doesn’t matter nearly as much to them. Otherwise, seriously, all they have to do is log on once every three months. Even people in prison can log on once in a while.

      2) This happens anyway.

      3) I don’t see it as discarding. I see it as tying up loose ends and allowing people to let go and move on.

    • Colchek

      In regards to #3, this is in regards to people who up and disappear for long periods of time with no warning or saying that they have some issue that requires a long absence. We had a policy like this in the early days of OS and back then it was an even shorter time limit, at one time only 30 days. If a player does have to take a long break from the game all that is required is a heads up to us via +str saying so and an in-game reason for their absence can be written in. Long backwater station assignment for military types, research mission to the Congo, family leave, etc. There’s lots of ways to handle it but the written out by death is reserved for players who disappear without a trace and show no sign of returning. If a player gives us a heads up then they’ll have an IC reason to suddenly re-appear and get back into the mix.

      • Brody Post author

        Yes. It is definitely worth noting that if a player knows they’re going to be out of commission, they can effectively write their own explanation for departing – temporarily or permanently – in advance of the deadline.

        I’d really just be targeting characters gathering dust with no explanation.

  • James Sterling

    –> Brody:

    –3) I don’t see it as discarding. I see it as tying up loose ends and allowing people to let go and move on.–

    You may not see it as discarding, but some of the players do and will. It’s not the people left behind that are being discarded: it’s the players who may’ve been away without realising they’d be ICly destroyed if they didn’t stop in now and again (and any of the rest of us if something unexpected happened to keep us from OS). Idle-purging is one thing, but writing characters out of canon locks the doors on their players pretty effectively, and for good. Why do you believe it’s necessary to take that extra step?

    –> Col:

    — We had a policy like this in the early days of OS and back then it was an even shorter time limit, at one time only 30 days. If a player does have to take a long break from the game all that is required is a heads up to us via +str saying so and an in-game reason for their absence can be written in.–

    Is this policy still in effect? I wasn’t aware of it, but I might have missed it.

    –There’s lots of ways to handle it but the written out by death is reserved for players who disappear without a trace and show no sign of returning. If a player gives us a heads up then they’ll have an IC reason to suddenly re-appear and get back into the mix.–

    How can a player who’s been written out get back into the mix if their character has been ICly killed? If they’re simply idle-purged, they can come back and re-create their character if they choose, come up with a reason they were ICly out of touch, and go from there. But if someone tries to log in and discovers that not only have they been idle-purged but they’ve been killed in their absence, they’re blocked from playing with a character they may have cared for, due perhaps to circumstances beyond their control, and they’re likely to be unhappy about the entire affair and choose not to make a new character at all.

    • Brody Post author

      Actually, I don’t plan to nuke any character objects. This won’t be a physical purge. Instead, it’s narrative – like a character leaving a TV show. And, along those same lines, I would leave open the option for a player to try to write their character back into the mix somehow. I won’t guarantee it’ll always work out, but I’m open to the possibility.

  • Alhambra

    “I would leave open the option for a player to try to write their character back into the mix somehow. I won’t guarantee it’ll always work out, but I’m open to the possibility.”

    Wonderful – Fabulous – Excellent.

    The initial concept had a note of -finality- about it, which struck an uneasy, reverberating chord.

    In essence, if I’m reading this right, it is just a more complex, narrative-based version of Limbo. If I’m reading this right, that is not as guillotine-dropping frightening as first impressions.

    I only ask, and again, not a demand, just a request, that (and this can really apply to anyone planning plot for anything) we be mindful of character links: sometimes consequences affect more than the initial target, and “survivor’s guilt” is not (for most? mileage may vary) fun RP.

    Many thanks for the open discussion,
    Al.

    • Brody Post author

      A little unease about the potential for losing one’s character to the imaginings of Yours Truly can be a healthy thing. If it reminds people to log on once every 90 days to avoid becoming grist for my mill, that’s a good thing.

Leave a Reply