Life seems to take strange turns, as they can cause a humble writer to be incognito for a good month. But typically when those people come back, big things come with it, and that is exactly the case for today’s War Stories entry. We’ve got not one, not two, but three sub-sections to cover today. In Stat Management, we talk about Guild RP, and Guild Events, which are the cornerstones to a successful RP guild. This should be a fun ride, so hit the jump to get the inside scoop!
RP stories, ideas and tips all after the Jump…
–The Front Lines–
A great Jedi Master was lost last weekend. Knights of Peace Councilor Shy’riah, is a devoted defender of the Republic and mother to a young Jedi and cousin of Grandmaster Zaii’gal of the Knights of Peace, was slain by a powerful Sith lord. Enrdelor was the name of the Sith lord and had been a rival to the organization since their inception.
Master Shy’riah had been hiding out on Tatooine to conceal her supposed newborn child from the dark lord. Having discovered her whereabouts, the Imperials moved in to capture her. However the plan to capture Shy’riah was interrupted by over a dozen members of the Knights of Peace. Soldiers and Jedi alike, rushed in to secure her rescue from the Imperial forces. The battle seemed to be in the Republic’s favor that day, but nothing prepared them for the appearance of dark lord Enrdelor and his new apprentice, Nomund’dras; now a fallen Jedi who had been consumed by the dark side.
A fierce battle broke out between the juggernaut Enrdelor and the sentinel Shy’riah, but she was no match for his overwhelming power. Disarmed and brought to her knees, Enrdelor prepared to take the final blow when he turned to his puppet; his apprentice, Nomund’dras. With a wry and sickening grin, Enrdelor gave the fallen Jedi the order to execute the former friend and Master. Nomund’dras held his sabers at her throat, but he hesitated. The true Jedi resurfaced, only to be presented with an impossible choice; kill Shy’riah in order to gain Enrdelor’s confidence, or throw away every effort he made to stop the dark lord’s plans by turning on him.
Nomund’dras looked into the eyes of his friend, who looked back at him. There was no other option, with a heavy heart, he struck down Master Shy’riah, before the Sith lord. Enrdelor and his apprentice soon after departed, as the Knights of Peace mourned the loss of their ally.
A funeral ceremony was held in Shy’riah’s honor on Tython. Amid the sadness and loss, the Council sought to regroup in order to find justice for their former friend and ally, somehow…some way. One thing is for sure; they would not let this death be in vain, and neither would Nomund’dras.
The grey Jedi has suffered a lot of hardship since his ship was attacked so many years ago, and all in his consistent endeavor of protecting the Republic from the Empire. However, it may perhaps be too much for him. Since we’ve last seen Nomund in his interview in Entry #0001, he’s been enduring emotional and mental struggles just as much as his physical struggles.
Nomund’dras spent a great deal of time fighting the Empire out of the Ilum system, and supposedly succeeded. However, this was when the Empire deployed their devastating new “Blackout Device” prototype on the unsuspecting planet, and destroyed most of, if not all of, the Republic soldiers stationed in the system. Nomund came back without his padawan with a plethora of war wounds only to be approached by Strategic Intelligence Service, or the Republic SIS. They knew of Nomund’s activity outside of the Senate’s sanction and wanted to put his skills to use in a most impossible mission.
They wanted Nomund to “turn” to the dark side, uncover the mystery of the Blackout Device, destroy it, and if possible, destroy the mastermind behind it. What made it worse, Nomund has to turn on his own friends, the Councilors of the Knights of Peace, in order to secure trust with the Empire. At first, he vocally and aggressively declined the order. After a lot more convincing, Nomund realized he might be the only person who could tackle this task. He begrudgingly accepted, knowing full well the many consequences that would most likely come to pass. Although, he never would have imagined just how much it would weigh on his young Jedi’s heart.
Even before he could begin his defection, Nomund had the cruel task of assassinating his close friend, Grandmaster Zaii’gal. Before he did so, he spoke with one of the few people he could trust; Master Shy’riah, and told her of his confidential plan and made her swear to keep his secret in order to successfully infiltrate the Empire. She agreed, but this only made it even harder for Nomund, as he still had the torturous task ahead of him.
A few days later at one of the Knights of Peace’ regular meetings, Nomund walked into the room and in front of all of his friends, colleagues, allies, padawans and councilors, he struck out at Zaii’gal. The battle between the two began. It was one Nomund knew he couldn’t win. However, after several critical wounds on the grandmaster, he fled the scene to begin his integration into the Sith Academy, starting with exile. He spent years undercover and staying low; something that would hopefully convince the Sith, until they eventually found him, just as he planned.
What happened afterward were endless amounts of torture, pain, and suffering all to test Nomund’s defection, and ultimately convert him to the dark side. The Jedi was brainwashed, robbed of his emotion, his beliefs, and his own sanity. It was in this state he remained until the fateful moment he had his lightsabers at the throat at his confident, friend, and fellow Jedi Master, Shy’riah. The order came from the very Sith Lord behind the attacks of the Blackout Device and now ordering Nomund to finish her.
Nomund finished the deed and fled with Enrdelor, having successfully won the dark lord’s trust. But it came at a great cost to Nomund. It was perhaps this guilt and regret that caused him to contact the Council almost immediately after the skirmish on Tatooine to tell them of his true intentions and what had really been going on all this time, knowing full well they might not even believe him. He had little to nothing left, and telling them was perhaps the only justice he could give Shy’riah after he trusted her with his secret. Once he told them of the plan, he made a short, painful farewell to his fellow councilors, and his former friend he tried to murder, Zaii’gal, in order to continue with his mission. Time will tell if he can or even will be able to stop the Blackout Device, and its master, Enrdelor, but he knew this would only be the beginning of a path he couldn’t turn back on now.
Today’s stat management is about the importance of RP in guilds, and the even greater importance of guild events. But before we can break these elements down, we must first ask ourselves this; “What defines an RP Guild?”
RP guilds differ greatly from your typical PvE or PvP guilds because they are far more focused on socializing rather than cooperating or competing. While these types of guilds can do PvE or PvP, these only supplement the RP experience they present, such as a duel between two main characters in a guild storyline, or using a Flashpoint or Operation as a “backdrop” for another RP. Of course, you could just do PvE or PvP just for the sake of PvE or PvP within guilds as well, but it’s the guilds that go the extra mile to make these tools for their roleplay that make them highly successful. The key to a successful RP guild is the ability to socialize and roleplay as a member of a whole, grand story arc.
To actually get one of these guilds rolling, you have to treat a guild as another character with a clearly defined goal and characteristics, perhaps even flaws as well, with a spark of originality. They could also benefit from your study of the Star Wars: The Old Republic lore, as you could have your guild related to certain factions or events within the timeline. Even your generic side quest you may encounter could spark an organization your guild members could be a part of. One such example is a former guild I ran called the “True Republic,” which was inspired from one of the Coruscant side quests. Another guild from the same server became a group of soldiers who defended House Organa on Alderaan. You could even have a guild play as a section of the Jedi Order, or even the Order itself. There’s a limitless freedom to what your guild’s goal or focus could be, but the only caveat is that typically these will need to stay within their own guild. It shows lack of originality, restraint, discipline, and even creativity if you began boasting to everyone on the server that your guild was the entire Jedi Order. So treat your guild as a character, figure out a purpose to why that faction exists within the canon of Star Wars, and then run with it.
The next step is inviting likeminded players. You’ll want to look for players whose character aligns with the goals your guild has in mind; such as the protection of a certain character or organization to name one example. Another could just be as simple as a mega corporation. Certain characters may fit easily into these roles depending on how open-ended they are (such as any guild that has the express goal of protecting the Republic or fighting the Sith), which can make it easy for most players to fit in. However, the narrower your guild’s focus, the more limited your optimal recruits would be. The former is beneficial for guilds intending to go large, while the latter is for smaller, more focused guilds. Neither necessarily trumps the other; they just welcome different audiences but also require different rules in order to succeed. Either scenario you choose, both of them require a fundamental necessity for success, and that’s Guild Events.
You know when BioWare releases a big new event for the game such as the Rakghoul event, the Gree event, or the Bounty Week events that give players a story element with the game’s universe to play with? Guild events have a similar impact toward its members. They become large, major events which members get a chance to have their storylines progress either by the guild or for the guild. Character progression is very important, and the same rule applies to guild storylines. When members can help forge events for other members to participate in or observe, they’ll feel like they’re part of a grand story. These are highly rewarding to members and can potentially be extremely fun. This is why in the outset of your guild’s creation, there has to be chances for conflict or change, and the more control that’s given to certain members, the better the chance of those changes happening and thus progression. Some of these conflicts could be pre-planned battles with a guild on the opposite faction, or a guild you partner up with to stage RP events with.
The final key to success is open-mindedness. Players should always have a chance to impact a guild’s story or even motives. This should even be encouraged. Any one member or officer should have the power to have something big and game-changing happen within the guild. These could always potentially spiral off into new and interesting directions or storylines the guild could participate in, and is also fun for everyone involved. Think of this as playing a game with a friend, and one of you rolls a Light Side character, the other a Dark Side characters. When one of these characters wins a roll for a lightside/darkside option, this can potentially be frustrating for the player who lost the roll, but this then can create a possible conflict to RP off of or derive into a whole story arc, not to mention it makes things much more dynamic in general. Similar cases happen in duels with other players; you may fight to win but still end up losing the fight. This is why the skill of adapting to new situations is critical to roleplaying, and roleplaying with a guild. Occasionally an opportunity will present itself for your character and other times it might not, and sometimes you can be put into a situation that may not be your preference, but these very things could be the seed to some interesting stories just waiting to happen. Always keep that in mind.