Game Policies

As these are the rules, this is the area where we (the Staff) may come across as an ass so we don’t have to at game. Please do not just glance over all of these, but spend time reading them. If you have any questions, ask. You have been warned.

The Rules

RULE ONE: Enjoy yourself!

Seriously, if you’re not having fun, why are you here?

RULE TWO: Allow others to have fun.

Also known as the corollary to Rule One. This is supposed to be a fun experience for more people than just yourself. Please maintain an environment that allows others to enjoy the same amount of fun that you would like to have. While conflict (both in and out of character) is an inevitability, please maintain a sense of civility. Deciding to torpedo an entire game just for a few laughs is not something conducive to the type of game we are running. While character integrity and motivations are very important, please do not use this as a shield to ruin other people’s fun.

RULE THREE: Don’t Cheat.

This will be kept simple to avoid any confusion. Cheating includes, but is not limited to: Metagaming, using abilities/powers not on your sheet, using counterfeit character sheets, lying to staff (this includes Mommy/Daddying the STs), and lying to other players about staff decisions.

RULE FOUR: Respect the Venue.

Balboa Park is a public space the gaming community has been using for years. Please don’t cause us to lose it. We ask that you clean up after yourself if you bring/create trash on the site. This includes things as small as cigarette butts. If staff has to clean up after a mess left by anyone, or if we get complaints about the mess left behind, NO EXPERIENCE WILL BE GIVEN FOR THAT SESSION. We are neither your mother nor your maid.

RULE FIVE: Have faith in the STs.

Integrity is paramount in this game, and we will be striving to make sure that every call is fair and impartial. If you think a situation is unfair, bring it to the Staff’s attention. Many times, we will rectify the situation as you are completely right. However, if we inform you that there is nothing unfair going on, please believe us. Many times we are partial to information that you are not. The atmosphere of suspense and drama requires at times that we not tell you everything. Please be assured that we aim to give you the same enjoyable gaming experience as everyone else. If you do not believe this, please refer to rule one. If you cannot follow both of these rules, please leave.

RULE SIX: Do not argue with the STs.

We, the Staff, are not paid to run this game. We do it because it is fun. One of the things that ruins that fun is having to argue with players (or oversee arguments between players). Staff has a straightforward policy to rules disputes. If a rules call is questioned, staff will make their decision. If you contest it, they will check the resource (this wiki or the source books, usually). If you contest their interpretation, they will make a staff decision. THAT IS FINAL. Continuing to argue the point will result in you being docked your Participation XP (see XP Policies) or possibly being asked to leave the scene or game. The proper way to handle an issue with a scene is to go along with your ST’s call and discuss the issue after the scene (or preferably, after the game).

The Consequences

Reactions to Violating the Rules

  • Warning: We understand that game can at times be a stressful and emotional environment. As such, if you break the rules we may just give you a warning. Staff will pull your aside to let you calm down from the situation and warn you to be more careful in your scenes.
  • Desanctioning of your character: We may withdraw your character from play entirely if the offense is seen as an appropriate resolution of Rules Violations. If you have a character that does unnecessary things to ruin the fun of other players (not characters) we may ask you to create a different character as this breaks Rule Two.
  • Asked to Leave: If the offense is grave enough, we may ask for you to leave the game until we as a unanimous staff issue you an invitation to return. Please note: This might not happen. However, it is also likely it may be a situation where you are allowed to return after five minutes after all parties have calmed down. Please contact the staff if you have questions about this.

Other Consequences

  • Rage Quitting: We all know what it is, call it what you will. Making a dramatic exit. Calling a rules call horrible and making a grand display in front of everyone. Yelling and insulting staff and storming off. The point is, we don’t want it. Period. If you Rage-Quit, you will not be allowed to return until you are extended an invitation from the Staff. You make the dramatic exit, stay off-stage until you are called back on.
  • Dropping a character with no staff communication: Life happens. We understand that real life takes priority. But please keep in mind that this game is not just about you. If you want to bow out, we won’t hold it against you. But please tell staff so we can work to the resolution of your stories and ties to other characters. Everyone deserves closure and it is unfair to deny other players theirs. If you feel like bailing and leaving both players and Staff frustrating with keeping continuity in your absence, please wait for an invitation from Staff before coming back to game. Missing three consecutive games without informing the staff of your absence will move your character to Inactive status and put it in the hands of the storytellers.
  • Avoiding Character Consequences: While similar to the above situation, this one varies in that you show back up. Characters lose their appeal. That’s understandable. Having a backup concept is a great idea too. The problem lies in players not willing to accept the consequences for the actions undertaken. If you come into game, kill an esteemed character or in some way ‘Rock the Boat’, and then want to create a new character to avoid dealing with the vengeance/justice coming your way, we will not allow your new character into play until you finish the story arc with your old character. We will endeavor to make it a meaningful ending for you, but we do require an ending. If you are uncomfortable with the repercussions for your actions, then you should not have taken them. Reap what you sow.

Game Policies

PCs Outside of San Diego

This game is set in San Diego County. A character who moves to another county, gets a job out of the area, etc., graduates into NPC status and will be taken over by the STs and/or retired entirely, depending on the preference of the player.

Deadlines on Submissions

Downtime Actions must be submitted by the Wednesday before game (at the latest) to give our staff adequate time to process and consolidate actions. Please don’t barrage us with last minute “OMG-DID-YOU-GET-X,Y,Z” while we’re trying to get ready for game on Saturday. Experience Point spends must be in by the Wednesday deadline, or done on site before pregame. We won’t be approving XP spends or anything like that once game has started. We encourage spending your XP on your sheet when you turn it in at the end of the night.

Character Creation At Game

We will not be handling Character Creation at game. We would prefer to make your character before game with you to go over our setting, and will happily make it with you in downtime leading up to game, or approve your character on site. Anything that is Restricted will not be approved on a walk-up character. However, if you are unsure what to play, or approvals for your sheet were too complicated before game, we will have pregenerated characters (pregens) available for you to choose from to get a feel for the setting.

How do I declare downtime information/experience?

We will do our best to handle all your downtime and experience needs in a timely process. To aid with this, we have provided three options for you to make such declarations.

  1. You may message the staff member relevant to the declaration. They will record the action and let you know what happens. Do NOT do this with experience spends.
  2. You may email the game’s email account ( shadowsoversandiego@gmail.com ) with your actions. Make sure the phrase ‘EXPERIENCE’ or ‘DOWNTIME’ is in the subject line, or it may not be logged.
  3. You may declare downtime declarations at game, after we call game, but before Staff leaves for the night. Forms will be provided. Please make sure your name is on the form and it is placed with the character sheets. Experience spends may be done the same way, or done before Pregame.

Game Policies

Shadows Over San Diego ValtielVex