Role Play: Roleplaying on non-roleplay realms
Last week we addressed the topic of non-roleplayers that make the move to roleplaying realms. But what if the switch is flipped – what if you’re someone who wants to roleplay, but you’re not on a realm designated for RP? Sure, you’re creative and you enjoy roleplaying, but you’re also really involved in competitive raiding or PVP as well. The good news is that it isn’t impossible. There aren’t any rules against RP on realms that aren’t designated for it. Despite this, however, it’s a lot more difficult to make it happen.
Your biggest hurdle right off the bat is finding other roleplayers. And that may be an insurmountable mountain to climb. People that join PVE or PVP servers are there for a particular type of play, whether it’s raiding or competitive PVP. It’s exceptionally rare to find people that want to RP – and asking in chat or on the forums is just going to result in a lot of people telling you to go to an RP server.
One probable solution to what may be a fruitless search is to install an RP profile addon. If you’re lucky, you might spot some people who also have the addon installed. If you see someone with an RP profile on a non-roleplaying server, it’s worth it to at least ask about it. Worst case scenario, the character in question is an alt of someone whose main character is on an RP server.
The better option is to simply take advantage of cross-realm grouping to “visit” an RP server. It’s easy enough these days to create a custom group for just about anything under the sun – and that includes RP. The one downside to this is that RP addons don’t typically work across servers. You’re not going to be able to see anyone’s profiles or character descriptions with this method.
Keep it quiet
If you’ve found some friends who want to roleplay, keep in mind that on your server, RP isn’t a promoted activity. The rules that apply to RP realms don’t apply to you. Although people tend to be pretty polite and friendly on RP realms, that’s not necessarily the case for PVP or PVE realms. You’re the odd one out in this instance, and people may – at the very least – look at you a little funny for trying to RP on a realm not intended for that purpose.
Because roleplaying isn’t an intended activity on these kinds of realms, I recommend just keeping it quiet. If you’re going to roleplay, keep it in whispers, party, or raid chat. Try and avoid areas teeming with players. Those players may interrupt your roleplay, and there’s not much you can do about it. Avoid talking in /say or emotes, otherwise you may open yourself up to trolling.
Remember that you’re on a PVE or PVP server, not an RP server. You can’t really get away with asking people to vacate an area so you can roleplay in peace. Other players are under no obligation to accommodate you. You’re the odd one out in this situation.
Make an alt
Of course the easiest possible solution to this scenario is to roll an alt on an RP server. Leveling is pretty painless these days, and there are plenty of catch-up mechanisms in place once you hit max level. As an added bonus, you can roleplay your way through the leveling experience, and get a good look at what kinds of open-world roleplay are prevalent on the server you choose. You don’t have to abandon your main at all – you’re simply creating a second character specifically for RP.
While this particular solution means you’d be splitting your time between your main and an alt, your time is still better spent in the long run. You’re more apt to find RP when you do go looking for it, instead of spending hours searching for another rare roleplayer on the server you call home. You won’t run into potential trolling, and you won’t have to keep quiet about it.
If you do choose this method, you’ll want to let any potential roleplay partners know what’s going on. You’re playing an alt, which means your time is going to be a little more limited when it comes to roleplay. Players looking for hours and hours of interaction in highly involved storylines may not find that with you. You’ll need to schedule your roleplay not just around your work hours, but also your raid or PVP schedule as well.
An uphill battle
It’s hard to balance a full-time gaming schedule with the desire to roleplay, but it’s not an impossible task. Being a dedicated raider or a competitive PVP all-star doesn’t automatically lock you out of any roleplaying opportunities. It just requires a little more effort – both in finding the roleplay, and in keeping it. Scheduling might be a little tricky, but if you really want to indulge your creative side, you can make it work.
Trying to roleplay on a non-roleplaying realm can be a lonely road. Even if you find another roleplayer or two, you’re still not going to find big crowds of open-world RP. Large-scale RP events just don’t happen on non-roleplaying servers. Walk up RP isn’t really going to be prevalent, either. But you don’t need those big group events to enjoy roleplay – all you need is one other creative soul. Keep your eyes peeled, consider your options carefully, and decide for yourself just how much roleplay you need to satisfy that creative itch.
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