An Elf was riding swiftly through the plain on his faithful horse, eagerly trying to reach his destination. He had a very important message for his master and he knew the foes were closing in on him. He turned around and noticed the warg riders. His face became pale with comprehension and he urged his animal forward. Soon they were close enough for the Elf to hear the foul breaths of the beasts. He looked around once more and realized they were about to throw a spear at him. He maneuvered sideways and the weapon hit the ground inches away. You grab for your bow and…

A phone rings and you look up from the computer screen. You mumble something underneath your breath about inconsiderate people that disturb you during writing and you go to pick it up. After few moments on the phone with your mother and explaining to her that you are extremely busy, you hang up and you go back to writing your next post for this wonderful thread in RPG Forum on CoE you are involved in. You faintly recognize that you may be a little addicted to the whole thing but you just continue.

Yes, RPG forum is one of the most popular on the Council of Elrond and draws a great number of people daily. There are three sub-forums where everybody can find something for themselves. In Totally Tolkien, more widely known as TT, consist of all the stories that are based strictly on J.R.R. Tolkien’s works. There are to be no dragons, vampires, werewolves and other magical mambo-jumbo. All the places that are mentioned need to be correct with the Middle-earth locations. Another sub-forum that we have is Tolkien Related, known as TR. This is where you can have Middle-earth locations and people, but enhance the powers a little. Do not go overboard with it though, as there are limits to how far you can go. If you think you have something that won’t fit in either of these sub-forums, there is always Non-Tolkien sub-forum, known as NT. Here you can find Harry Potter hanging around with his classmates, Final Fantasy characters, Yu-Gi-Oh and many others. There is no limit to what you can play here, as long as you stick to the rules.

What is RPG to begin with? It stands for Role-Playing Games, an activity that has been going on way before the Internet itself. It’s normally played with dice, pencil and paper, but with the coming of the computers, many had switched to the new medium. The RPG as we know on CoE is pretty much story telling from few different points of view. Each person involved in a thread/story takes on a character and guides him/her through the adventures that people involved create. There is also an unspoken rule that you do not take other person’s character without permission.

There are also different ways of role-playing: scripted and unscripted. The first one usually includes a certain level of planning and if you want to join such thread, you need to contact the originator about how you could fit in. The latter kind is a lot more lenient about things and most of the time you can just jump in as long you make yourself fit in with the situation at hand. Both types are equally fun, but sometimes it takes a lot more guts and deduction when you have a planned story and you still want to have your own input into the plot.

Now, as I am a RPG Moderator, I could probably share a few insights into the job from a point of view many may not know of. A lot of people see staff of that forum as bossing around and forbidding a good fun. Let me just say that it is not true, as we all work tirelessly to make this place as pleasant as possible. Each and every RPG moderator has to read through a lot of threads each day, making sure that all participants are abiding the rules. We do that objectively, trying not to judge anybody. Even if we notice some minor rule breaking, we will first nudge the person in the right direction before we go into any more drastic measures.

When I check the forums that are assigned to me, I usually start with the ones that have very short posts. They go by much quicker and I can move on to the threads that have a lot more evolved posts. That way I can just kick back and enjoy usually a good piece of writing that takes me to an enchanted place of Tolkien-like magic. At the moments like that I am actually grateful I am RPG moderator and have an opportunity to look over such great threads.

No matter in how much detail I try to describe to you the wonders and drawbacks of role-playing, there is nothing better than actually experiencing. Even if you are not a great writer, it may be great to go and check out the forum. You may find yourself drawn into a world you never knew existed. And when you join in and start roaming the plains of Middle-earth yourself you will realize that you don’t really need to be a literature major to create a world that will take your breath away. I hope to see you around!

by Abraon

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