Roleplay Guide 2009

The last major edit of my popular eWrestling roleplaying guide was in 2006. Well, times have changed and so has ewrestling in many ways.


This column is designed for a beginner, or as well call them ‘rookie’. Someone who is new to eWrestling and doesn’t know where to start and how to write a decent roleplay.

Let’s go over some basics:Lucha Libre

Roleplay: A roleplay, sometimes known as a “flash” is playing the role of a pro-wrestler in written form and sometimes through other media. Roleplaying is writing out your character’s actions which could range anywhere from a backstage interview to an elaborate story arch. Traditionally, roleplays are judged in a writing contest against another roleplay in order to achive higher rankings in an efed setting.

Roleplaying in ewrestling is a form of fictional vignettes and many times short story writing. With this in mind, I recommend using short story writing guidelines to maintain some sense of continuity in the ewrestling community.

There are 3 styles of roleplaying that sometimes branch out into others.

1. In-Ring: This is basically what we call a “trash talk” RP. Much like the real pro-wrestling world, you have your character standing inside a wrestling ring and putting himself over in order to win his match against his opponent. This doesn’t necessarily have to be negative commentary, especially if your opponent is a babyface character.

2. Interview/Promo: Much like an in-ring RP, your character is putting himself over, usually in a backstage or outside of the ring setting. You may literally have your character being interviewed by someone, however it’s not always manditory to be considered an interview or promo as these terms have been used interchangeably.

3. Character-Development: Also shortened to C-Dev or abbreviated to CD. This style has become more of a standard currently, and has replaced ‘in-ring’ style RPs as the main style of delivering a roleplay. It’s also the hardest to explain. Basically, your character can be doing anything, anywhere and many times the roleplay has very little to do with your opponent or the match. Many efedders have chosen this style in order to develop the persona and breathe life into their character, giving them a past, a family, a life outside of the ring, basically. There really are no boundries to what people have and can do with this style, but some still frown on this fact because they prefer the traditional methods of keeping roleplaying more like what you would find on TV.

There are also different types of roleplays that sometimes may not be in texual form. Some have done video roleplays, some have done audio roleplays and some have done graphical roleplays. It is up to the fed-head how they want to approach these styles.

Once you choose a style, or a mixture of styles that is comfortable, you might ask yourself a few questions;

1. How long should my RP be?

That depends on you and the fed-head. If your fed-head enjoys reading, he might not give you any limits at all. If your fed-head wants to mitigate his burden, he might give you a limit and it’s totally up to that individual.

I recommend using the “flash fiction” guidelines to give order to this chaos. For more information about flash fiction, go here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flash_fiction

However, there are some roleplays that go well beyond 3000 words. I also recommend using words as the form of measurement. It becomes too confusing to use any other method in my experience such as “page scrolls”, “letters” and some have even used the kilobytes of the page. Using words is also the traditional method for professional writers.

2. How many rps should I write?

That’s one of the guidelines given by your fed-head. You might feel like writing 12, but your opponent only wants to write 1. That would be unfair. So the fed-head is your source for this one.

3. How do I write a roleplay?

I can only give you what has been done traditionally.

Opening

Most RPs that I’ve read begin with something like “The scene opens”, “The scene fades in” and then a description of the area and the character follows. Personally, I like to open with an action or a scene description.

[This is an example of a C-Dev style rp]

Boom!

An explosion rocks the gym as HardKore sits up on his bench wondering what the hell just happened. He stands, cautiously to investigate. “Is everybody ok?” he yells.

You can say a lot and engage your audience without giving a ton of “narrative” and description. However, many people still prefer opening with a more traditional approach.

The scene opens with HardKore sitting on a black bench press as the camera pans around and we find that he is in a powerhouse gym, surrounded by people and equipment. HardKore is wearing a gray pair of jogging pants and a black tanktop and he is covered in sweat.

While HardKore is lifting the weight, there is a loud explosion and he wonders to himself

HK: “What’s going on?”

He then stands up to investigate and see if anyone is hurt.

Now, I just gave you an example that you are likely to find in an efed. You have the scene opening, which I feel is unnecessary to say but is still used alot. You have a detailed description of the surroundings. You have a detailed description of your character and then whatever hijinks follow.

Usually the ‘narrative’ or descriptive words are italicized or colored differently from the character’s speaking to let the audience know that he’s talking. I think this is also unnecessary, however it’s traditional. Coloring or html is many times used to seperate the differing characters speaking in a RP as well.

How you open is up to you. I believe that your opening can make or break your entire roleplay. I think it’s important to engage your audience from the very first word: “BOOM!” would generally make someone wonder what is going on. Explaining in detail how a scene looks can quickly get boring if done incorrectly.

Body

This is basically what happens in your rp. Whatever story or whatever your character is doing.

You might want to include photos, or HTML or some people even include music into their rps. As I said, it’s common for people to seperate the different characters and narrative from action by using colors/HTML.

Some experienced ewrestlers will use roleplay themes, which are basically fancy containers designed to make their rps stand out. There have been some resource sites that offer free roleplay themes, but it seems like a passing fad, especially since forums are the predominant area for roleplaying these days.

Your fed-head will provide a place for you to roleplay and he may or may not archive them, so it’s up to you to save your work.

Finish

How you end your roleplay also varies. Much like using “The scene fades in”. Many have used “the scene fades out”. I like to just wrap things up, myself. I also see no real need to write that the scene is fading. People should know when your story is done.

There’s no official way to do this. It can be part of a series, a cliffhanger or just basically a bunch of trash talk that ends with the mic being thrown on the mat.

Here are some unofficial rules that most traditional roleplayers follow:

1. If you don’t see it on TV, you don’t do it. As foul as Austin was, you didn’t see him spouting off with the “f” bomb or throwing out racial epithets.

2. Don’t break the “fourth wall”. Don’t mention that you are an ewrestler, or you are writing a roleplay. This is the same as breaking kayfabe in pro-wrestling. You are a wrestler when you write a roleplay.

3. Proofread your work. It’s become less of an issue to have perfect spelling and grammar, but this is a writing contest for the most part and your work should be legible. Some judges are very picky about this even still.

4. Do not use your opponent. You don’t know what your opponent would do, so don’t make them do anything. You wouldn’t want to see your self kissing someone’s converse and getting trashed, would you?

5. Stay within the realms of reality. This has been stretched, but you are not a super hero. You are not an unbeatable badass. Don’t have your character getting shot 20 times and walking to the match, only to win.

That’s all for the time being, this article will be updated as needed, unlike the old version which will never be updated.

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