To Forum or Not to Forum

I always get questions about what the forum is for or if we’re moving everything to the forum. So this post is intended to outline what the forum is for and when it might be useful to use.

Scheduling Conflicts

Live chat RP is best when people can be on at the same time, this is difficult in the modern world of not only work and school restrictions but also difficulties of time zones. The forum should be used for those people that have scheduling conflicts with people they’d like to play with and thus who are not online at the same time. The configuration of chat is, shall we say, temporary, it isn’t really designed to be persistent long term. Sure a person can search for something but that gets cumbersome as well. There are also issues in live chat of, what if someone wants to use a channel where people have paused a session for several days?

That is where the forum comes in handy. Since it is designed for extended time between postings, it works well to start a thread for a particular scene and then one can move on from that thread as they want to, when each has time, always able to pick up where they left off.

Long vs Short Form

The other major advantage of the forum is that it lends itself well to long form role playing, that is play where people type in full paragraphs, or several paragraphs, at a time. It takes a lot longer to read and takes longer to compose. This goes back to the problem of scheduling conflicts as well, because people generally need more time to digest and process a long form role play post in order to create one themselves.

Conclusion

Thus the forum is a tool, designed to allow people to connect to role play in different ways than live chat provides and is meant to work in conjunction with live chat. Since a topic contains its own encapsulated setting, it can be used to explore different ideas that would be difficult in live chat. One should consider using the forum if the parties involved are seldom online at the same time or if one or more parties in the role play would like to do longer posts.