Author Topic: Developing Special Applications  (Read 1392 times)

Archbaron

  • Posts: 1543
Developing Special Applications
« on: July 18, 2009, 03:17:53 PM »
A special application is defined as a role that you start with that cannot be achieved during normal character creation, whether it has to do with a lack of karma on your part, needing to start with special items, or having a skillset not typically defined in the starting guilds (ie. higher starting levels, or extra skills all together). However, those are just a few examples, and a special application can be anything you think of. It is extremely important to note that in Armageddon, achieving things is half the fun, so I discourage people from specially applying for rich or very skilled characters. These characters lack the adventure and fun that is experienced getting there, in my opinion. As players, we are allowed to submit 3 special applications a year through the Request Tool on the main website.

During my time here on Armageddon, I've submitted my share of special applications. Over time, I've devised a template for getting a special application across to the staff member in charge in a very succinct and clear way (at least, I hope). If you are someone submitting a special application for the first time, or just lost as to what kind of format to put it in, the following is always a good model to base your formatting off of:

(1) <Introduction - Why this is a special application>

Name:

Sex:

Race:

Guild/Subguild:

(2) Mdesc:
[---|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----]

(3) Sdesc:

Age:

(4) Background:
[---|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----]

(5) <Summary - Once again, why this is a special application>


What I just posted is my complete template for my special applications, and I also use it for developing normal applications on my hard drive beforehand (a practice that I encourage everyone to us). Feel free to use it. Everything listed is in order for what is prompted during character creation. Obviously a few things, such as height, weight, and stat order are extraneous, so I remove them for the sake of brevity. The more thought-out your application is, without unnecessary rambling (succinctness is key) then the easier it is to judge as a special application. I'm not saying that just because your application looks pretty, it'll get accepted, but it definitely serves as a bonus. If you care for your application, then it makes your idea look more developed. Now I want to bring out a few points that I've numbered in the application itself:

(1) The introduction to your idea is one of the most important parts. You have to be able to explain to the reader exactly what the role is you're desiring, why it is special, why you think you deserve it, and what you want to do with it. But most importantly, you have to be able to grab their attention. The reader has read a lot of special applications, and you have to show them why yours deserves its chance in Zalanthas.

(2) Some may say descriptions are unimportant, but helping the reviewer create a mental image of your character is extremely helpful, and it is required in the process.

(3) Just as the mdesc, the sdesc is very important. When choosing words for your sdesc, choose words that don't require a dictionary to understand. Go for originality, but not something over the top. Use discretion. If the sdesc makes you ponder on what it is describing, then it will make the reader ponder even more.

(4) Arguable the most important part of your application, the background is the bread and butter of your character. Your background should adequately sum up everything your characters has experienced in their life (their milestones, setbacks, traumas, etc). You only have 1800 characters to work with, so save your long-winded rhetoric on the character's entire life and "special-ness" for the next part.

(5) The summary is the part where you can tie up and loose ends and answer any questions that your application may invoke. This is your chance to pour your heart into the character and help the reader understand the direction you want to go with it. Remember that when they judge applications, they want to see roles that keep the gameworld balanced and create unique situations for other players, so think of what your character can do for the world.

I strongly recommend that you save your applications on your hard drive and spend a good few days developing it. Write it all out, leave it alone for a few hours or a day, and then come back to it with a fresh mind. Your application will be much more rounded with this tried-and-true writing technique. Now, here are some things to remember:

  • The karma ladder serves as a guideline. Don't think that you have to play a Desert Elf before playing a Rukkian or even a Mul. However, building yourself up and proving yourself is key to getting roles you want. If you want to play a Drovian, maybe play a long-lived, successful Vivaduan or Rukkian first. Don't have any karma at all? Consider using a low-level karma guild to boost your trustworthiness in the staffs' eyes. However, don't play a role only to get karma. You won't enjoy it, and most likely as a result will not get karma. Karma is not an end in itself. Play for fun.

  • When it all boils down, a special application is a matter of trust.

  • That being said, it is wise that you stay up to date about your account notes. Have a rather vicious-looking scar on your notes for something you did with a certain character? That might affect the judging of your application. For new players, "recent account notes" is anywhere from 6 months to 2 years, so it may take a while for those scars to fade. In the meantime, show them that you're truly as great of a role-player as they want to think they are, and get some good account notes.

  • If there are four hundred Whirans flying around, or even just two or three known sorcerers, then don't apply for another. However, if you have a concept, start fleshing it out. Sitting on an idea and building it over time will allow you to really feel the role and know how to express it to the reviewer

  • Don't ramble in your special application. Rambling can easily be read as "this person is just going to keep talking until they hit a point that I agree with or like." Be short and sweet and win them over with as few words as possible. Remember that you're likely not the first application they've reviewed today, and you won't be the last.

  • Use paragraphs and proper grammar and punctuation.

  • Let the reviewer know what makes your special application, well, special. Sometimes you have to spell this out. Not only tell them why it is special, but tell them what you plan to do with them in the game.

  • That said, do not make your application overly special. Staff have said a few times that the more you ask for, the less likely you are to get accepted. Keep your needs realistically minimal. If you're asking for a role several karma points about your current level, you probably shouldn't include coded mutations that give you some sort of an advantage as well. Basically, as a player with one karma, you are more likely to get a Vivaduan, than a Sorcerer Mul with wings, elf wisdom and steel horns.

  • If all else fails, follow the format provided in the request tool.

Obviously, I'm not on staff or an expert on special applications, but this is just the knowledge I've picked up since I started submitting developing characters -- normal and special. Good luck!

~~~~~

Please feel free to discuss and help me develop this guide.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2009, 07:46:42 PM by Archbaron »
"Never was anything great achieved without danger."
     -Niccolo Machiavelli

Cutthroat

  • Helper
  • Posts: 4372
Re: Article: Developing Special Applications
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2009, 04:10:06 PM »
I would add a point in your bullet-list about asking for too much, or even too little. Here is what I would add, probably in between the current next-to-last and last bullets:

  • That said, do not make your application overly special. Staff have said a few times that the more you ask for, the less likely you are to get accepted. Keep your needs realistically minimal. If you're asking for a role several karma points about your current level, you probably shouldn't include coded mutations that give you some sort of an advantage as well. Basically, as a player with one karma, you are more likely to get a Vivaduan, than a Sorcerer Mul with wings, elf wisdom and steel horns.

Feel free to edit that.

otherwise, it's pretty good.

Archbaron

  • Posts: 1543
Re: Article: Developing Special Applications
« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2009, 04:41:34 PM »
Added. Thank you, that's a good idea. :)
"Never was anything great achieved without danger."
     -Niccolo Machiavelli

MarshallDFX

  • Posts: 1531
Re: Article: Developing Special Applications
« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2009, 04:42:34 PM »
How about a succinct definition of what a special app actually -is-.  Asking for extra skills over the usual, and a few other examples.  

Archbaron

  • Posts: 1543
Re: Article: Developing Special Applications
« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2009, 04:48:55 PM »
How about a succinct definition of what a special app actually -is-.  Asking for extra skills over the usual, and a few other examples.  
Added a definition and a few examples in the beginning, as well as a disclaimer as to different ideas held about specially applying things. Also added a bullet to explain special applications are a matter of trust.
"Never was anything great achieved without danger."
     -Niccolo Machiavelli