Rules are the not-fun part of everything, but they exist for a reason. In the Time Served community, we want to maximize fun for the largest number of people. That often means making some personal sacrifices "for the greater good". That being said, a well-designed game shouldn't require a lot of explicit rules that aren't automatically enforced by the game world. Whenever possible, we will try to keep this list short in favor of creating the proper boundaries within the world itself.
Violation of these rules may result in disciplinary behavior up to and including permanent banning from the community and server. You are not expected to memorize every word on this page, but you are expected to exercise common sense.
IC (In Character) refers to knowledge or information that your character knows. OOC (Out Of Character) refers to things that you the player know. As a player, you will inevitably know more information than your character. Maintaining a separation between the concepts of IC and OOC is a fundamental part of roleplaying. If you are deemed incapable of keeping OOC separate from IC, you may be asked to leave the community.
Using "/me" is a way to show physical reactions/descriptions for your character that can't otherwise be shown using current game mechanics. For example, if one broke their arm in the day, you could use "/me Bob has a cast on his arm" or if one fell off their motorcycle and had their face dragged across the asphault, you could use "/me has bad road rash on their face." It is also heavily used in medical RP and encouraged between medical interactions.
Abusing /me is a form of FailRP and is not permitted on this server. Examples of this are as follows:
Using /me to show thoughts. If your character is thinking something, no one else would hear it unless it was spoken by your character. You can't use /me to say "/me thinks Burger Bob is a dumbass" but you could use it to show frustration, "/me looks frustrated at Burger Bob." RP is always king, though, so if you could express your frustration through your dialogue, that is preferred.
Using /me for OOC communication is not allowed UNLESS you are having microphone/audio issues and need to quickly alert those in your scene so you can fix it. You can say "/me has to adjust his earbuds" but you shouldn't continue to communicate OOC in this manner. Please take it to Discord, instead.
We strictly enforce /me rules. Abide by "serious RP" and remember RPing is always preferred, but /me is a great tool to add to RP if used correctly.
The question often arises as to whether stream/VOD footage may be used for IC purposes. We do allow recordings to be used ICly in certain scenarios under specific criteria:
The question of whether or not something is "reasonable" will be decided by the courts. Video may be submitted as evidence and a judge (or GM) will rule on whether it's usable/admissable based on the circumstances. Here is a non-exhaustive list of factors that are considered to determine whether or not the expectation of being recorded is reasonable:
The ruling on whether the submitted video can be used may also come with caveats. For example, a judge/GM may rule that a convenience store has cameras, but the audio may not be used because convenience store security systems typically do not record audio.
In summary, in order for "video footage" to be used for any IC purposes, you must have two things: 1) Actual footage from a stream or VOD, and 2) A ruling from a judge or GM that use of the video falls within the expectations of "reasonable".
Each time your character "dies", they start a new life - all their previous memories are lost. You may not immediately return to the place where your character died, pursue revenge on the person(s) who killed your character, or recall any (IC) information about the events leading up to your character's death. If you have a question about whether something is permissible or not under NLR, consult with a moderator.
We (the administrators) are here to provide and maintain a virtual world that serves as the backdrop for creative storytelling. Every story has protagonists and antagonists. Every character has a story where they are (usually) the protagonist. It's natural to want your character to "win" in various conflict-based situations, but it's important to understand that you cannot always be the victor in a virtual world where every character is the protagonist of their own story. It is impossible to have an explicit rule against "wanting to win", but be mindful of your actions and whether or not you're creating an environment that other people want to roleplay in.
Police officers are ambassadors of roleplay in our community. They have significant IC and OOC responsibilities that reflect the immense power that real police officers have. The power to deprive someone of their rights should not be taken lightly. In a video game setting, improper use of police powers drains the fun from an otherwise interesting IC conflict. This is a delicate balance, and as game designers we are always mindful of tipping the scales too far one way or the other when it comes to police versus crime.
That being said, everybody makes mistakes, and police officers are no exception. When an officer screws up in the real world, the consequences can be severe. That's why they go through months of training to get their badge followed by years of ongoing education. Our RP cops don't have the benefit of that training, but they're asked to make those same decisions and split second judgment calls (albeit in a game world). If something goes down in a way that seems improper, remember: Roleplay over rule play. Finish the interaction, don't break character, and consider bringing any concerns to a moderator after the fact.
It is important to note that there is not a server rule against police corruption within the LSPD and BCSO. However, just like every other character, the police will be held accountible for their IC actions. Corruption (if it's caught) may lead to disciplinary action, firing, or criminal charges. The SASP are the one police agency explicitly tasked with rooting out corruption within the other departments. All of this to say that if you have a problem with a cop, your recourse should be In-Character if the offense was In-Character. Some asshole cop giving your character a hard time is not against the rules. Go file a complaint with their supervisor.
If every character is the protagonist of their own story, that means our police officer characters often become the antagonists. Keep that in mind. Playing the "bad guy" can get exhausting, but the core of any good story is conflict. Also try to remember that there's a real person behind every character. Regardless of what goes down in the IC world, treat everyone with common OOC courtesy.
Occasionally, a criminal will rise to a level of notoriety which ICly garners the attention of the federal authorities. There are no exact criteria for when this happens, but repeatedly and blatantly committing violent felonies with no regard for anything is a great way to get noticed. When this happens, the character's name will be placed on the FIB's Most Wanted list. When a character who is on the Most Wanted list is finally caught and arrested for any crime, they will be sentenced to life in federal prison. This is effectively a forced perma-death for the character depending on other circumstances.
A character may be removed from the FIB's Most Wanted list if they start tempering their behavior and acting less conspicuous. In other words, fly under the radar for a while and the FIB will move on to other more important things.
When you play on our server, you implicitly agree to abide by a common understanding of the world. Our characters live in a modern, industrialized world with a technology level equal to early 21st century Earth. There are no dragons. Magic is not real. Aliens are a conspiracy theory. People who think otherwise are probably viewed as "eccentric" or just downright crazy. This common understanding of the world is our shared immersion as players.
You are signing an implicit contract to abide by the rules of our shared immersion. You cannot be otherworldly. You are not a time traveler. You do not have superpowers. You can act like you do, but you should expect that most people will view you as eccentric or downright crazy. This is necessary in order to maintain our shared immersion.
The community and server are both sandboxes for roleplaying. You are encouraged to create your own stories. You are free to be as creative, elaborate, and inventive as you want within the context of your own stories, even if that doesn't necessarily mesh well with our shared immersion. Other players are free to go along with your story if they so choose. However, they are also free to "opt out" if they do not want to break the rules of shared immersion. They can wave your story off as "nonsense" or "crazy" or "a conspiracy theory" if that would be an appropriate reaction for someone with our common understanding of the world. That is their perogative, and as a story creator you should respect that. The only time this does not apply is if the roleplay was initiated by a Game Master.
If this entire section seems confusing, then you probably don't need to worry about it.
We use a progressive discipline system that typically begins at the lowest level and goes up one step with each subsequent infraction. The disciplinary levels are (in order):
Administrators may use discretion when moving up to the next level of discipline depending on the player's history within the community. Once someone has been premanently banned, their only recourse is to send an appeal via email to firstname.lastname@example.org no sooner than 30 days after the ban begins.
Prior rule infractions are expunged after six months. In other words, if you get a warning and then keep your nose clean for 6 months before screwing up again, you'll get another warning instead of a 3-day ban.