Help Topic: Parenthesis
All the things that your character does, from picking up a cup from a table to punching an opponent in a fight to clutching their pearls in horror, is all roleplay. Some of your roleplay will be written out in an emote (example: emote staring at ~aleph in shock, @ clutches her pearls close to her bosom. "Oh nooo!" she wails in horror) and some of it will be in a command (example: get cup from table).
You're able to perfectly customize the expression of a freeform emote, but sometimes it might feel as though "get cup from table" can't possible compare in terms of creative writing. With parenthesis, however, "get cup from table" can be perfectly expressive.
> get cup from table (with a snide sideways glance at ~aleph)
You get an etched glass cup from a low corner table, with a snide sideways glance at a monstrous chimaera.
This allows you to be very expressive even when it comes to mechanical actions. Most commands can be used with parenthesis in order to add an emote. Further, combat commands (such as punch, kick, slash, etc) and interaction commands (stand, sit at table, etc) can be entirely replaced by emotes if 'emote' is appended on the end, followed by the emote written how an emote would normally be written. Feel free to read HELP COMBAT or HELP INTERACTION for more information on that.
Not all commands can be replaced by emotes, because mechanical actions should stay clear to readers for the most part. Combat and interaction are exceptions because they are so commonly used and it can feel clumsy in roleplay to write an elaborate emote about an action and then just tag on a mechanical command. Although other commands don't tend to support complete rewrites, most commands should support the use of parenthesis.
Since these commands will send you second-person messages, you may optionally use these conventions in parenthesis to refer to yourself by pronouns: /me, /my, /mine, /I
> drop note (glancing around surreptitiously as it slips from /my hand)
Others see: Donna drops a note, glancing around surreptitiously as it slips from her hand.
You see: You drop a note, glancing around surreptitiously as it slips from your hand.
Note that this will not conjugate verbs or do anything else, and you're not required to use it -- you're free to just write "drop note (glancing around surreptitiously as it slips from her hand)". This convention is just available if you prefer to see consistent pronouns in your roleplay logs. The syntax will support any of the varied symbols you might be familiar with when using emotes, so $my, ~my, and /my will all work equally well.
Non-exhaustive list of parenthesis commands: get, drop, eat, drink, lock, unlock, open, close, say, sing, talk, whisper, shout, ring, strum, pound, stand, sit, lie, sleep, wake, lean, crouch, kneel, push, pull, use, turn, touch, move, go, wear, remove, think, feel, remember, movement commands, & combat commands
If you have a command that you would like to work with parenthesis and it does not currently, please suggest it either on the forums or by reporting an IDEA.
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