Metagaming (role-playing games)
Not to be confused with Metagaming Concepts.
Metagaming is a term used in role-playing games, which describes a player's use of real-life knowledge concerning the state of the game to determine their character's actions, when said character has no relevant knowledge or awareness under the circumstances. This can refer to plot information in the game such as secrets or events occurring away from the character, as well as facets of the game's mechanics such as abstract statistics or the precise limits of abilities. Metagaming is an example of "breaking character", as the character is making decisions based on information they could not know and thus would not make in reality.
Metagaming is considered unsporting or cheating in a competitive gaming context, and is generally poorly received as it subverts the emphasis of accurate character depiction based on in-game experiences and back-story that defines role-playing games. Outside of role-playing, metagaming simply refers to players using knowledge or understanding of external factors (such as community trends or coincidental events) to gain an advantage in competition.
More broadly, metagaming can refer any or all aspects of play that occur outside of a given game's fictional setting. This most prominently includes any discussion among players and/or the game's master about the game's events and contents. The practice metagaming is often frowned upon in many role-playing communities, as it upsets the suspension of disbelief and affects game balance. However, some narrativistindie role-playing games deliberately support metagaming and encourage shared storytelling among players. It can be contrasted with live action roleplaying games with a more cinematic style, where the use of metagame references to specific books and films, either before the game or during play, prompts the players as to the atmosphere the organisers are aiming to create.
- Any action that is based upon the real-life knowledge that one is playing a game.
- Gaining knowledge from Out-Of-Character (such as pre-reading adventure guides or watching others play through the same game or pre-prepared campaign).
- Using in-world knowledge from a previously played or dead character.
- In split-screen games, using another player's viewpoint to gather information that one's own character does not know and could not access.
Bending the rules:
- Adjusting a character's actions based on foreknowledge of the long-term intentions of the gamemaster.
- Basing a character's decision on knowledge of the game's mechanics to gain an advantage, when the resulting action goes against that character's personality, history or motives.
- As a form of powergaming during character creation, when a player takes flaws or liabilities that they know the gamemaster is unlikely to fully exploit, thereby acquiring extra creation options without paying a corresponding penalty.
- Using certain types of attack or defense based on the strengths and weaknesses of an opponent of which the player's character has no knowledge.
- Acting on any knowledge that the character does not know and could not learn - for example, applying real-life chemistry to create gunpowder in a pre-firearms setting, without said character having any foreknowledge or interest in chemistry or any precedence for its development.
- Adjusting a character's behavior towards other player characters based on real-life relationships with other players. This extends to and includes attempts to engender friendships or relationships, and manipulate those of others, via favoritism in-game.
- Deciding on a character's course of action based on how the game's abstract mechanics will affect the outcome.
- Assuming that something that appears to be wrong or unlikely in the game world is a mistake of the game's master rather than something that could be investigated. (There are incidences where a game's master's depiction of the world is genuinely at fault, causing players to gain knowledge their characters should not know - however, it is incumbent on players to not utilize that knowledge for their character's future decisions.)
- Assuming that if an item (such as a chest, desk, or book-case) is mentioned by the gamemaster during the initial description of an area, it must have some relevance to the storyline, and immediately searching or examining it. (while ignoring other furnishings or objects that are most likely there as well).
5 important terms GTA 5 RP fans should know
GTA RP is a whole new approach to GTA Online and it has its own set of nuances. Like a lot of other games that have a large and strong community, GTA RP players have created certain terms that mean things that are specific to the game.
For players new to the game, these terms can be confusing and in some cases not knowing what these terms mean can lead to players being kicked out of servers.
Here is a list of 5 terms that are often used in GTA RP and what they mean.
GTA 5 RP TERM #5 - VDM
VDM stands for "Vehicle Deathmatch", and this is when a player goes around the map ramming their car into other players or their cars for no apparent reason. This is something that is considered quite a serious offense on most servers and can amount to the player being kicked out of the server.
Most RP servers expect their players to role play out their differences rather than resort to childish behavior which ruins the gaming experience for someone else.
If they're playing the role of a ruthless killer or somebody who is out for revenge, then VDM can be acceptable. However, it doesn't work if the player isn't playing a character that has a reason to do so.
GTA 5 RP TERM #4 - RDM
RDM stands for "Random Deathmatch", this is when a player on the RP server decides to start a killing spree for no good reason. RDM is a punishable offense on GTA 5 RP servers where players take roleplaying very seriously, as these servers try to mimic real life as closely as possible.
As one might notice, San Andreas is based on California. While crime does take place in it, it's by no means a lawless land where random civilians are getting blown up by RPG rounds or having their vehicles shot at randomly.
Likewise, some GTA 5 RP servers want their server to be more peaceful unless it makes sense otherwise. If players wish to duke it out with other players, then choosing a lax GTA 5 RP server or even GTA Online is a much better option.
GTA 5 RP TERM #3 - Powergaming
Not everybody can be at the top. Unfortunately, some players on GTA 5 RP play the game as if they are the kings of the server. While some players have to be at the top, it's crucial to understand that not everybody can. If everybody tries to do that, then the roleplaying aspect just fails spectacularly.
Powergaming is essentially when players try to maximize progress toward whatever goal they set for themselves, usually in a roleplaying scenario. If a GTA 5 RP player tries to powergame another, it often means that they are trying to forcefully drive the story in a way that favors their character at the expense of others.
Predictably, big streamers often powergame as it entertains their followers. It's difficult to enforce at times, but it's still frowned upon by the GTA 5 RP community.
GTA 5 RP TERM #2 - Metagaming
Everybody metagames at some point when they're roleplaying. Oftentimes, it's unintentional, but it's when players do it intentionally that it becomes a problem. Metagaming is when a player uses real-life knowledge that their character wouldn't realistically have.
For example, a GTA 5 RP character who got shot in the head cannot realistically have a coherent discussion for five minutes with one of their buddies, telling them who shot them, where they went, etc. This is because although the player can see where their assailant went, the character they're playing wouldn't be able to.
A player's character shouldn't know everything that the player knows. The video listed above goes into great detail on why players shouldn't metagame.
GTA 5 RP TERM #1 - OOC
OOC stands for 'out of character'. Not everybody is a perfect roleplayer, but there are obvious moments when a player shouldn't go out of character. Unfortunately, sometimes a player takes offense to an action taken toward their character as they're unable to differentiate between themselves and the character they're roleplaying as.
There are moments when OOC can make roleplaying quite awkward. After all, how is a character supposed to react to another if one of them is constantly changing their personalities, sometimes even taking events personally?
OOC isn't the strictest thing to violate in GTA 5 RP, but it's brought up enough that players should know what it means.
Note: This article reflects the writer's personal views.
Metagaming is using OOC knowledge in roleplay thoughts, actions, or behavior. Metagaming is a frequent issue in forum roleplaying games. It often occurs with new players who do not know to keep player knowledge out of IC interactions. However, seasoned players do sometimes intentionally use OOC information to give their character an advantage. When intentional, metagaming is definitely bad roleplay.
- Metagaming (verb)
- The use of out of character knowledge in character.
- Metagamer (noun)
- One who has metagamed or metagames.
Metagaming is a form of bad roleplay that can be quite difficult to police. This is especially true if the metagamer is smart and stubborn. They can argue about how a character obtained information, how sensible it is for them to act one way or the other, and so forth — and sometimes, they’re quite right! Metagaming is rarely so cut-and-dry as the examples provided herein. See Wikipedia’s metagaming article for a wider array of examples.
Types of Metagaming
The OOC knowledge in Forum Metagaming is obtained by reading forum names, profiles, announcements, and other information.
Examples of Forum Metagaming
WRONG: Azazel is brand new to the city. In an RPG post, Azazel identifies Baphomet as a member of the local vampire clan. Azazel also verbally states the clan’s name.
WHY: There is no way Azazel can know the vampire clan’s name or that Baphomet is a member.
WRONG: The RPG admins announce an upcoming plot to flood part of the valley. The River Wolves live in this part of the valley, and have done so for hundreds of years. Territory and culture are important to the pack. The leader abruptly removes the pack from this vicinity, offering a weak IC reason of “explorative leadership.”
WHY: The leader has used their OOC knowledge of the upcoming plot to move their pack out of danger.
Avoiding Forum Metagaming
- What you read on the forum is not what your character knows. Forum markers such as group membership, area names, and other information that pertains to the IC world exists for organizational purposes only. Your newcomer character will still need to learn his or her way around.
The OOC knowledge in Roleplayer Metagaming is information the roleplayer has, but the character does not have. This is very similar to skill-based godmodding, but specificially deals with information that could not exist in the RPG’s setting.
Examples of Roleplayer Metagaming
WRONG: Alice knows electricity. Her Ancient Greek character corrects another character, using an advanced electricity theory.
WHY: Alice’s character has no way of knowing electricity. It hasn’t been invented yet and is nonsensical in the time setting.
Avoiding Roleplayer Metagaming
- Remember what your character knows is separate from your knowledge.
- Pay close attention to your game’s setting to determine the appropriate knowledge level.
This is a more active form of metagaming. The OOC knowledge in this case is not merely written into roleplay passively, but impacts decisions the character makes. The essential element is that the character makes a decision they would not normally make due to the roleplayer’s information.
Examples of Decision Metagaming
WRONG: Azazel and Baphomet get into a fight. Baphomet’s player, Alice, reads in Azazel’s forum profile that Azazel is a very brute-force fighter. Prior to this, Baphomet’s style was similar. For this fight, however, Alice immediately roleplays Baphomet as a highly defensive fighter.
WHY: This is metagaming because the change in Azazel’s fighting style takes without apparent IC reason. If Baphomet and Azazel were already fighting and Azazel’s tactic changed, or if Azazel and Baphomet fought before — Alice may not be metagaming.
Avoiding Decision Metagaming
- Re-read your own character profile and adhere to its information.
Post Metagaming would literally require mind reading. This is the most obvious type of metagaming and is severe bad roleplay; there is no reasonable explanation for this in most roleplaying games (excepting RPGs where mind-reading is allowed).
Examples of Post Metagaming
Azazel: Azazel really disliked Baphomet already. But — the wolf was alpha, and Azazel was required to show respect. The pale wolf could only smile and nod his head as the darker canine prattled about how awesome he was. There was nothing in Azazel demeanor to suggest he wanted to go home and sleep. For his duty of appearing a respectful subject, he played the part excellently.
Baphomet:“Well, jeez, what crawled up your ass? You know what, just get the hell out of my pack,” Baphomet growled. He stamped his foot petulantly at the other wolf. Baphomet could have handled being told to just shut up. He knew he tended to go on and on about how awesome the pack was, but he didn’t like Azazel’s attitude. As far as he was concerned, newcomers who were that full of themselves could die as loners.
WHY: Baphomet has no way of knowing Azazel’s feelings. Baphomet’s player is using their knowledge, gained by reading Azazel’s post, to influence Baphomet’s actions.
Avoiding Post Metagaming
- Pay careful attention to instances where the character’s stated appearance differs from their inner feelings. These may be instances where the thought is vastly different from the presentation.
Popular Twitch streamer Trainwreckstv is under fire after being accused of metagaming during a recent stream.
In an exchange on the GTA V RP server NoPixel 3.0, Train appeared to have knowledge from other players on the server that he had not directly been a part of.
Some of the knowledge that Train gathered had taken other players on the server weeks to learn for themselves. The incident occurred as part of the meth lab story currently unfolding on the server in which a rival gang had located a lab key and discovered how to correctly manufacture the product through research and development.
If found by admins to be metagaming Train could potentially face a ban from the server as this would be directly breaking the rules.
On top of this, other streamers participating in the server have not been impressed. In the case of UberHaxorNova, who had been one of the players to sink hours of research into the meth storyline on the server, he believes admins should be bought in to handle the situation.
Train is not the first streamer to be accused of metagaming on the server. xQc was also caught using similar tactics, however, his ban was lifted following conversations with the server admins.
If the accusations are correct, Train may have hindered other players’ ability to complete their RP on the server and in turn cause rippling effects through other storylines.
5 rp gta metagaming
The boy watched nervously at his uncle's reaction. He grinned: Nothing, anything can happen. '' Uncle patted his nephew on the segment, grabbing the testicles, he ran his fingers between the buttocks, he did it a little longer and Kolya felt a pleasant languor in.Great Role Player - What is Metagaming and is it bad? - RPG Game Master Tips
The eyes were hot. But the smell and even the taste were pleasant to me. Soon the door slammed and closed.
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Why. - They are taken when they want to give a man a break. For example, when the pace was too high and he could not finish.