You don't need to know a lot about either systems or lore to dive right in and play the game. What you do need to know, however, is that Song of Avaria is a game about stories. Actions will lead to consequences, and relationships with other characters will develop and evolve -- and sometimes that involves conflict. Characters may be at odds with each other sometimes, and use many different methods to influence one other's stories. Physical conflict may be a part of this, but there are many other forms of conflict that may be more complex and subtle, and which can flavor interactions between hostile characters in interesting ways.
Even in-character conflict can be off-putting to some people sometimes, but it's useful to remember that conflict can drive interesting stories for your character and give them opportunities to develop in ways they might not otherwise. Here are some other things it's helpful for you to know:
- Conflict in Avaria should ALWAYS be CvC, or character-versus-character, rather than true PvP, or player-versus-player. Please remember that you are storycrafting with fellow roleplayers, and definitely not trying to damage the enjoyment of others. Our characters might hate each other to death, but we are still enjoying a hobby together.
- You will not generally die in Avaria unless you as a player decide that this is a suitable end to your character's story. Death is consensual. There are very rare exceptions, but we are looking to pursue long and deep character stories here and because of that we don't want character death to occur for trivial reasons. Character death is largely permanent as we are striving for relatively meaningful and at least somewhat realistic narrative, but we don't want people to feel they need to shy away from conflict and risk because they might permanently lose their character.
- While death is consensual, conflict is not. Characters are expected to come into conflict sometimes, in ways both big and small, and we don't consider it necessary to OOCly ask permission before initiating some kind of argument, plot, or altercation. If one character starts a conflict with yours, don't take it personally or consider it a personal attack.
- There are many interesting consequences for conflicting characters besides death. If your character is injured badly, they could end up permanently handicapped, and wound recovery can take a relatively long time. Your character may lose titles and prestige due to political maneuvering, or lose economic advantages due to banditry and theft. Untrue rumors may be spread, your character may be lied to or betrayed, and all manner of realistic conflict may happen. These may just as well be consequences for the character discovered initiating the conflict -- not everybody likes a schemer or a thief, and in the process of trying to bring others down they may get on the bad side of influential persons!
- Gossiping about in-game events and the actions of other characters should be something that your character does (in-character), not something that you do (out-of-character). Metagaming in terms of coordinating action over an out-of-character medium is absolutely not all right. Speculating together OOCly about the motives of other players is unnecessary and damaging to immersion. Spreading rumors and lying about other players is not part of the game at all.
- "Winning" should be judged by having successfully created an interesting story for all characters involved, rather than "my character beat yours in a fight." Stories can be boring without conflict, but conflict sours quickly when it spills over into real life. Please assume the best of your fellow players.. or preferably don't assume anything at all and simply roleplay your character while keeping focus on the story as it unpredictably unfolds!
- If you are worried about something, report it. You can use the REPORT command from in-game, and even make anonymous reports.
But remember: always keep character conflict in-character, and have fun! We all win when we play together, enjoy dynamic and exciting stories, and don't take conflict personally.