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Messages - s0ulz

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Firstly, Layonara's servers will be renewed again for a year. Yay! So you can rest easy that as long as there are volunteers to keep the cogs greased the world will continue to run.

Secondly, there are about to be some significant changes to the sites. Every Layonara site and feature has been rolled into one all new site. That includes LORE, the forums, the gallery, the calendar, the character pages, the personal messages, the downloads, the devlog etc.

Let me say the new site is awesome. I can't begin to describe how many features exist. I think players will love the ability to tag anything with your character and then your character's page aggregates all this information. Whether it's a forum topic, a gallery image, maybe quest participation each "node" can be associated with as many characters as you wish.

Here's a current screenshot of the front page to give you an idea of the look and feel of the site.

Anyway, it's getting pretty darn close to being ready so I hope you share in my excitement for its new launch. I'm sure some of you will be a bit concerned with transitioning to a new system but we've tried to keep every single feature that exists already into the new site.

I'll be happy to answer any questions about the new site and we'll go through a period of adjustment I'm sure but moving forward to have the entire codebase in one place is a real benefit to everyone's end.

Also as you may already know, the servers are being paid for their annual renewal again and every dollar you can help to donate will ease my expenses. I've included the links to donate once again for your convenience.

Donate to Layonara in AUD

Donate to Layonara in CAD

Donate to Layonara in EUR

Donate to Layonara in USD

Thank you,
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General Discussion / It's a boy!
« on: December 15, 2011, 03:21:32 pm »
At 3:05am, EST on December 13th, 2011, my wife gave birth to a beautiful 7lbs 5oz (3314g) baby boy. We are over the moon, healthy and tired. I hope to see you all soon.

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General Discussion / Happy birthday Layo's hardest working GM
« on: November 28, 2011, 05:03:30 am »
To Dezza,

Old ... but still able to father children. I guess that's something.

Happy Birthday!
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General Discussion / EdTheDad
« on: October 26, 2011, 03:36:32 pm »
Hi all,

in case not yet heard through the proverbial grapevine, I've become a dad of a beautiful little girl!
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Just for Fun / The Problem Is...
« on: September 20, 2011, 01:34:18 am »
... now I'm tempted to make a page for Kell.
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Layonara Server / Character Submission Process Changes - September 2011
« on: September 19, 2011, 10:41:25 pm »
Greetings Layonara,

 I am writing you on behalf of the Character Approvals Team and in conjunction with the changes happening server wide. Over the years we have given little (and not so little) tune-ups to the CA process, trying to find away to make the requirement of pre-approval work for the majority of people. We've taken feedback to heart and attempted to scale back certain obtrusive aspects to the process while balancing overall needs and have only met partial success. Striving to find a better version of policies, we have taken a large step back and looked at things from a different angle entirely.  

 What is outlined below is a result of that different viewpoint. The changes, in some ways aren't much, but in other places they are quite huge. All of these changes, together, are designed to return the world to a policy that promotes the focus on roleplay. While exploration, crafting and accumulation of experience are all part of our experience, the focus is returns more fully to character development through roleplay.  Lore will be the primary focus of the character application process. Rarely will mechanical detail hold up applications, but lore must be compliant. Here is an outline of the changes:
 General procedure goals and statements:

 - The CA Team's main goal will scale back to what is most important for the biographies, and indeed the world: Lore. If something does not fit with current lore, it will be held up until there is an appropriate change (or compromise in a few cases).  
 - CAs will no longer ask for justification of class, development of an alignment nor expansion on a race except for those that are listed as special (Wemic, Brownie, Ghostwise Halflings, Sea Elf, Dark Elf or Goblin). Those biographies that include details that are CONTRARY to alignment, class or race will be held up where lore becomes an issue. (No wizards gaining innate power and lacking the need for study. No humans with elf traits. No Lawful Good characters lopping off heads out of rage.)
 - Resubmissions for basic classes have a new set of rules. Any scrutiny will be lore based but there are level related restrictions (for lore reasons). For clarity, 'basic class' is any of the standard classes except cleric, paladin, druid or monk due to issue of lore or long standing multiclass restrictions.
  • Multiclassing with a basic class at level seven or below will only require a resubmission request. No CDT, no proof of training, supporting documentation. The resubmission will require only an updated biography blurb in the request. (Johanson wants to add rogue levels to his fighter class because he's been studying on how to attack more effectively. The new split will be 5/15.)
  • Multiclassing with a basic class between levels eight and fourteen, will require either a maintained CDT, a PC trainer or a CDQ. This choice is up to the requesting player but they will have to abide by the needs of their choice. If opting for a CDQ, some minimal RP/Lore justification will be needed.
  • Multiclassing for basic class at level fifteen (the last point at which anything can be added before level twenty) will require a CDQ and either a maintained CDT or a PC trainer.
  • Multiclassing after level twenty will begin to require more in depth attention from the CA team as this is much like turning over a new leaf in the life of a person. A maintained CDT or PC trainer are a must.
  • Multiclassing with a basic class from level thirty on will -not- be approved without a supporting WLDQ.
  • PrC multiclasing will remain the same.
Other changes we are making, exclusively geared toward new players/accounts:
  New forum accounts, regardless of if they are simply alternate accounts for current players or whole new people, will be limited to the following for the first approved character:  
  -Races are restricted to basic elf, basic dwarf, basic halfling, human and basic gnome. No subraces.
  -Character class is restricted to Barbarian, Bard, Fighter, Monk, Rogue, Ranger, Sorcerer and Wizard.  
  -The character's alignment is restricted to CG, NG, LG, LN and TN.
  -New players are eligible for resubmission for with the original character or with a new character after two weeks of active game time.
  -The Character Stable will still be an open option to new brand accounts.  

  The intent behind these restrictions has nothing to do with a prejudgment of new player's ability to correctly play a class, alignment or race. What it does is require new players to focus purely on the lore of Layonara, which is vast and unique compared to many places. The limitations placed will hopefully help simplify entrance into the world in effort and gaining expediency. They will hopefully limit the frustration many people have expressed about being required to know lore that they feel they don't have proper access to. Once in the world and experiencing things first hand, the rest of the opportunities open up.  
 Some notes related to these changes:
Gilshem Ironstone is the new CA Team Leader. He, Pibemanden and Geloooo will be working the majority of applications. Ycleption, if she should get a chance to return to us, still holds a spot on the CA team (at least for now).  
 There may be a rare instance here and there where a GM will step in to help out but this will be only under certain circumstances which we will not list. An example of such would be, if two or more CA team members are unable to fulfill their duties for a period of time due to RL obligations and the remaining CA requires assistance.  

 Your GM Team will still be a part of the process on the back end of things. Giving council, clarification and testimony will remain a part of what we do to help. We will be focusing our attention other places instead (elaborated upon in other posts).
 Some upcoming reform and projects for the CA Team/process:

 Our Class and PrC descriptions will be updated on LORE to be Layo-centric. A lot of what is on LORE for descriptions now are stock NWN descriptions of things and long have been out of sync with the server's core lore. This confusing factor will be rectified in the coming weeks (though we do not have an exact ETA.)
 We have some additional avenues for advancement and training coming to the server that will relate back to how the CA Team can work with people to gain desired classes, alignments and deity relationships (among other things) and encourage roleplay.
 Our documentation on the process of submitting a character for approval will be brought up to current both on the forums and in LORE. We do ask that you be patient with us as we go through this adjustment. Please keep in mind that we are working with several people to make this change over with clarity and thoroughness.  
 We hope that all of the changes bring a more meaningful and less stressful experience to the world as a whole.  
 The Character Approvals Team
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Layonara Server / World Policy Update -- Sept. 19, 2011
« on: September 19, 2011, 10:39:48 pm »
Greetings Layonara Community,
As we have done now and then through the years, we are bringing some changes to Layonara.  Some of these are significant. Others are simple clarifications of what already exists.  Regardless of the case, from this point forward, a new set of policies and conventions will be in place for all, from the new player on up to the GM team.  These changes have come after a good deal of consideration, proposal, discussion and refinement over the course of several months.  They take into account those things that we, as a community, do well and those things that we, as a community, could do better.  The full details of all these things are too much to list here, but they will either be covered with some detail elsewhere or be evident in the way things are done by the GM team.  Don't worry; the changes are all aimed at a more positive experience for everyone.
What I will do here is summarize these changes and then offer an agreement between the community-at-large and the GM team. The latter is offered because in order for this all to work, it requires cooperation between everyone, whether one is “just a player” or our most experienced GM. Afterall, we're all working toward the same goal: a rich and enjoyable experience for everyone.  
[SIZE=18]Summary of Changes:[/SIZE]
 As mentioned above, the details of all the changes are too numerous to list here, and much of them get into administrative details.  To list the major changes in summary:
  • We are creating a world lore     publication fork. This is different from diverging NWN lore from MMO     lore, but it will still allow for some greater freedoms for GMs and     players while protecting those players who eventually wish to     achieve World Leader status or undertake a similar effort.  There     will still be opportunities to “change the world”, leave one's     mark and the the like. World lore is still important, but there will     also be flexibility.  This fork is considered to begin with the     conclusion of the last lingering matters after the world plot finale     quests held in May, 2011.  As things stand, this will coincide with     the wrap-up of Briardusk.
  • This publication fork also opens     up possibilities for GMs to run events which may not fit into world     lore.  Such events will be considered “unofficial” and     unsuitable for character development.  They are intended for player     entertainment and education...and perhaps GM entertainment as well.     GMs will clearly state when such an event occurs, so there is no     confusion on the part of players.
  • CDQs (and     GCDQs) are getting a significant change in terms of things like     waiting periods and other policies, with individual GMs being     allowed to set their own policies for the most part. They will also     be the domain of lore-friendliness, meaning a CDQ need not directly     deal with world lore, but neither should it violate it or conflict     with it. Everyone should read the updated CDQ policy, found here.
  • The world plot     will be handled in a different, more “organic” way. With the     wrap-up of Briardusk, we're taking a small break to get organized.     We will put out a “state of the world” description so everyone     knows the setting for moving forward. From that point forward, we     will be operating on a new methodology.  There will be opportunities     for world-level involvement on many levels, even when something     isn't marked as a “plot” event. To a large degree, what happens     moving forward will be up to the community.  More details will come     out over time.
  • The Character     Approval process is undergoing a shift, and we will be clarifying     some things as well. It is important for everyone to read and     understand this new policy, as it will affect all character     submissions from this point forward. Everyone should read the     updated CA policy, found here.
[SIZE=18]Agreement Between Players and GMs:[/SIZE]
  In order for everything to work well, we all need a reminder that there is a need for cooperation between both players and GMs.  Without it, there is nothing but difficulty, and anyone who has been around here long enough has probably witnessed the occasional period of problems and tension.  We recognize these will never be truly eradicated, but we can all take steps to minimize them and work more constructively when problems do arise. In that spirit, I offer the following agreement to be held between players and GMs.
 Players agree to...
  •     ...have fun, but never at someone else's expense.
  •     ...engage in RP as much as possible. Encourage the same in those     around you.
  •     ...keep in mind that GMs are your partners in RP here, not your     enemies.
  •     ...not spread rumors about favoritism or unfair treatment. If     there's a concern, bring it to Leanthar, EdTheKet, Dorganath, Rowana     or a Lead GM.
  •     ...try not to use words like “bother” or “inconvenience” (or     some form thereof) when approaching members of our various teams.      We choose to do this.  It's OK. It's not a bother or an     inconvenience.
  •     ...never be the reason for another player leaving the world or     abandoning a character. This has happened, generally through     behavior that has made a person feel uncomfortable or threatened. We     know it has happened.  It is unacceptable.
  •     ...avoid telling other players how to play their characters,     alignments, classes deity/dogma, race or some other significant     defining characteristic, which also includes concepts like the     Heartsong or the Al'Noth.  If there is a concern, bring it to a GM.     Otherwise, unless a player specifically asks for advice, let it be.
  • toward a better level of communication between everyone     here, whether it is with one of our various teams or with general     members of the community.
  •     ...remember that GMs and especially the lead staff have a lot     invested in Layonara.  We sometimes want to participate in     discussions. Our words, unless specifically stated, are not     generally the end of the conversation.
  •     ...understand that at times, the GM team must say “no” but this     should be respected rather than gossiped about, back-talked or     flamed.  “No” is rarely given without a reason, though if it is     (such as cases where we cannot immediately give one), it is not an     arbitrary decision.
  •     ...join the GM team in our respect for and observance of world lore.     As part of this, keep in mind that if we approach players with     matters or concerns about lore, we are only seeking to encourage and     maintain a consistent environment for everyone here.
  •     ...remember that GMs are players too.  Sometimes we just want to     enjoy ourselves just like everyone else.
  •     ...maintain respect for everyone here, from the newest player on up     to Leanthar.  This applies equally whether in-game, on IRC or on the     forums. We're all people. We're all gamers. We're here for the same     reason. Do not hide behind anonymity.
In return, the GM team will...
  •     ...provide a fair, open and enjoyable experience for everyone.
  •     ...provide a rich and interesting environment to support, encourage,     inspire and reward RP for everyone.
  •     ...attempt to communicate clearly and accurately with the community     on various matters.
  • open and available, as our time permits, for questions,     concerns and ideas. We may not be able to accommodate all requests,     but we will make reasonable efforts where it is appropriate to do     so.
  • as fair as possible. We are still people. We will make     mistakes, but the goal remains.
  •     ...try to communicate as clearly as possible at all times.
  •     ...respect, support and enforce world lore as appropriate. In doing     so, we may bring forward concerns or problems to players that are     intended in the spirit of our established world lore. Please give     these due consideration and respect our comments and the reason     behind them.
  •     ...provide a “clean slate” for all players moving forward from     this point (more on this below).
The above agreement is offered in the spirit that we're all here trying to play the same game.  We're all people. Many of us, whether player or GM, have a lot invested in this game world. Some arguably have much more invested than others, but for the most part we all have a significant emotional attachment to this place.  With such attachments often comes a sense of ownership, and with that sense sometimes there is a sense of entitlement or a way of doing things that is “better”.  It is usually these sorts of things that cause the most problems. We're all different.  We all have different ideas and perspectives.  These things are truly great, but we also need to remember that we're all here trying to get enjoyment from the same place, and this place has its set of rules and guidelines that everyone needs to follow. One person should not take their fun at the expense of another's.
  In understanding our various differences, let us also remember that each of us is only human.  The above agreement is a goal, and regardless of which side we're on, no one expects perfection. We do, however, request that everyone keeps these things in mind when playing here. Most of us here are adults. Let's remember to act like adults.  Speak to other players. Work out differences person-to-person, and ask for help if there are problems doing so.
 [SIZE=18]The “Clean Slate”[/SIZE]
  Under the GM section of the agreement, the concept of a “clean slate” was mentioned.  By way of explaining this, it is necessary to mention the oft-misunderstood “Player Watch List”.  Many players may not know if this list, while others may have the wrong idea of it.  
  The Player Watch list is simply that...a list of players to watch. A player may get onto the list in several ways, which can be summarized as bad or questionable behavior. Such behavior can take many forms, whether it is a complaint by another player, minor rule violations or any matter that seems of concern. We use this as a communication tool between the entire GM team, such that we may all know of issues that may require a closer eye on a player in order that they do not cause problems for others through such behavior as we may document. A player will remain on the watch list for a period of six (6) months, after which time, the thread will be moved to an “inactive” archive, assuming no further issues during that time. If necessary, an archived thread may be made active again if there are repeated issues for a given player. These threads help us determine when administrative action or more direct intervention may be necessary, and they serve as long term documentation.
 It bears stating, unequivocally, that the Player Watch List is not a list of people that the GM team “does not like.” This is actually quite far from the truth. It should also be said that just because someone is on the watch list does not mean the player is in trouble. In order to illustrate a little better what the list is and isn't, here are a few examples of why someone might appear on the list:
  •     Player A is seen repeatedly luring or using terrain features to     trick creature AI or is otherwise abusing creature AI to     disproportionately lower the challenge posed by a creature or set of     creatures.
  •     Player B is observed camping CNR or creatures in excess of what     rules allow.
  •     Player C is reported by Player D for some inter-personal matters     that make Player D uncomfortable or which impact Player D's     enjoyment of the game.  In this case, both players might receive     posts for tracking purposes.
  •     A GM comes across something that brings questions to mind about     Player E.  The player in question is not available at the time to     speak to about the find, and there are no other GMs around who might     be able to offer clarity. The GM posts a thread seeking attention     and comment from other GMs regarding the find. (Note: in such a     case, the post may be removed if it is determined that there is     ultimately nothing wrong or questionable.)
There are surely other reasons for appearing on the watch list, but these are among the most common.  In most cases, a GM should make contact with the player who is being listed to discuss the problem and request an adjustment in behavior.  However, whether due to time constraints, RL obligations or the player logging off of the server before such an opportunity arises, a GM may not be able to do so in a timely way. In such cases, the GM may still post in order to mark the incident for other eyes. A GM may also post to raise a player concern with the rest of the team in the absence of available information. Again, it should be stressed that someone being on this list is not automatically in trouble with the team.
  To enact the “clean slate”, from this point forward, any and all active Player Watch List threads are now archived permanently. Any past incidents or disciplinary actions, except for permanent bannings of course, are hereby forgiven and completely in the past.  If a player who has been the subject of one or more Player Watch List posts in the past has a new incident worthy of the Player Watch List, such incidents will be considered new, and past incidents will not be taken into account.  Repeated incidents after this point will, of course, be handled as we have in the past, with each thread serving as a historical record for future reference.
  This gives everyone who may have come in conflict with server rules in the past or who may have caused difficulties for other players to start fresh and without bias. It is our hope that in this environment, people will seize this opportunity to be better members of the community as a whole and remember that this is not just a single-player game and that our actions affect other players, either directly or indirectly.
 [SIZE=18]So let's get started![/SIZE]
  Without further ceremony or description, let's all start moving forward and continue making Layonara the best environment for RP and enjoyment it can be. For good or ill, we've all contributed to what Layonara is today.  As we go on, we will continue to shape it. Let's make it good!
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Welcome! In this forum you will find both the sticky you are reading now, indicating the process and rules in which the CDQs will be handled, and also a specific thread for each one of our active Gamemasters (GMs). Please read through the following information and guidelines to ensure you understand the rules and expectations before requesting a CDQ.

 Plesae note: The rules below represent the first major shift in CDQ rules in the last several years. Please take a few minutes to read and understand this post. For old players, the changes should be obvious.  For new players, welcome!

[SIZE=18]What [/SIZE][SIZE=18]is[/SIZE][SIZE=18] a CDQ?[/SIZE]

Character Development Quests (CDQs) are especially tailored quests that allow players to further some development of their characters. These quests provide players with extra resources such as GM time and guidance to allow players to affect large-scale character changes and development. CDQs are intended for larger character changes rather than minor things. Groups of players such as guilds, organizations or other groups with some common goal can also request a Group CDQ (GCDQ). If you are not certain whether a CDQ is right for you, read on! If you are still not sure after reading this sticky, the best route is always to ask someone, such as in our Ask A Gamemaster forum.  
[SIZE=18]What are the rules for CDQs?[/SIZE]
 As of this post, each individual GM will set his or her own policies and guidelines on CDQs, including what sorts of CDQs they will run, how often they'll run a CDQ for a given player or group and so forth. This basic idea is prevalent through the following universal rules:[LIST=1]
  • In order to have a CDQ, a player     must request one from a specific GM using that GM's CDQ thread.      Similarly,  a group may request a CDQ from a GM in the same manner.      There is no time limit or waiting period between CDQs in this     policy. Instead, each individual GM will set his or her own limits     on requests and the time between them.
  • As a universal policy, each player     may only have one (1) active CDQ request at a time.  An active CDQ     request is any CDQ that has been requested from a GM that has not     yet been completed. Similarly, a group may only have one (1) active     GCDQ request at a time.
  • A CDQ should have a valid purpose.     This will be enforced by the GM running the quest.
  • It is recommended that a character     exist in-game for at least two (2) weeks before a CDQ is requested     for that character. This includes a CDQ to take a PrC.
  • It is required that a character be     at least level 8 before requesting a CDQ, except for a character who     is approved to take a PrC. A GM may agree to run a CDQ before the     character has reached Level 8 at the GM's discretion.
  • A CDQ should be completed within 6     in-game quest hours.  Additional RP and “wrap  up” sessions may     occasionally be be run at the GM's discretion, assuming the CDQ has     completed (with a pass/fail result, if applicable).  Except in cases     of extenuating circumstances, a CDQ or GCDQ should be completed in a     timely manner.  It is recommended to complete CDQs within three (3)     weeks of the first session, but the GM may set an alternate     completion schedule.
  • Quest XP is never awarded on CDQs     or GCDQs, either to the main participant or any other invited     participants.  CDQs carry an emphasis on RP development rather than     mechanical advancement through accumulation of XP.
[SIZE=18]How do I know if I should take a CDQ?
[/SIZE]CDQs should always begin from a defined objective or goal. Legitimate objectives and goals include (but are not necessarily limited to):
  • Pursuing a secondary (or tertiary)     class
  • Pursuing a prestige class
  • Exploring a deity change
  • Joining, forming or gaining rank     in an organization
  • A cleric or devout character     taking action in their church
  • Obtaining an RP rank or position
  • A mage (or other caster) working     toward a specialization of some kind
  • Investigating family histories,     searching for lost relatives, etc.
  • Furthering some other area of     character development needing GM mediation and attention.
  • Pursuing content from a GM     initiated quest.
There are many goals that can be accomplished by CDQ, but some objectives may be either too big for a CDQ (and belong more to a WLDQ quest) or too small to merit a dedicated CDQ, and can be handled through other forms of GM interaction. If you are unsure whether something is attainable, or if it is too large or small for a CDQ, the best policy is to ask.

We do ask that players request a CDQ only if there is a legitimate character need. Our GM team is very busy running quests and working on projects that benefit the entire community, and regrettably GMs do not have time to run private quests for characters (unless the quest is to achieve a legitimate development goal, as above!), nor would this be fair to other players. Therefore, we ask that players look carefully at the calendar and at the diversity of quests offered by our GMs over many different timezones, and instead join a scheduled quest if they do not truly need a CDQ. Rest assured, there are plenty of opportunities to develop your character(s) in the many quests that are run each month.

If you are still uncertain whether your proposed goal merits a CDQ or Group CDQ or would best be handled in some other way, try answering the following questions:[LIST=1]
  • Is the CDQ based on a specific,     valid development objective, such that the outcome of the quest will     be meaningful?
  • Is the CDQ needed now?
  • Does your goal truly require GM     involvement, and if so could it be accomplished with a few minutes     of in game interaction or through another means?
  • Is your objective of an     appropriate scope (neither too big nor too small) for a CDQ?
As a final check, communicate with your preferred GM to make sure the GM is agreeable to running the requested CDQ. As each GM will set CDQ policies according to his/her own preferences, it is important to work with a compatible GM.
 If after answering these questions you believe you require a Character Development Quest then please continue reading to learn how to request one.  
 [SIZE=18]How can I request a CDQ? [/SIZE]
In this forum you will find a number of stickied GM threads. Each GM thread contains information on the times that those GMs are normally available, and any other pertinent information.

1. Read through the different GM threads, or the introduction threads in the Ask A Gamemaster forum, and select a GM.
 Your choice should be based on a compatibility between you, your character goals and the policies of the selected GM.  Besides these primary factors, keep in mind matters of timezones, GM style and other factors that may interfere with the CDQ process.  Whenever you are in doubt, the best course is to speak directly with the GM before the CDQ is run.
 2. Make a post in the CDQ thread of your selected GM.
 In making your choice of GM, you can request a CDQ by making a post in that GM's stickied thread in this forum. In order to communicate your CDQ goals, you should post or PM the details of your CDQ along with the request itself.  Over the next few days, you and your selected GM should exchange information on availability and scheduling, and you should discuss and clarify the details of the request.  There is a shared responsibility to the exchange of ideas and information.
 3. Communicate with your CDQ GM.
 It is the player's responsibility to communicate as clearly and completely as possible with the CDQ GM and to do so in a timely manner.  This includes conveying any details relevant to the request, resolving any questions of individual GM policy and basically making sure you and your GM are on the same page by the time your CDQ begins. If something changes, communicate this to your GM, even if it includes the need to change GM for your CDQ.
 4. Schedule a date and time to begin your CDQ.
 As soon as it is feasible to do so, you and your GM should work out a schedule for beginning your CDQ. The GM will work with you as much as possible to reach a common and agreeable schedule. A GM may set his/her own time frames and policies regarding scheduling, including the order in which the GM runs your CDQ relative to other CDQs the GM may be running.
 5. Prepare for your CDQ, and invite others if you wish.
 Depending on your goals, the type of CDQ and other factors, you may need to do some preparation before the quest. You may also wish or require the presence of others in order to complete the CDQ.  Be sure to invite any other people in plenty of time for them to be able to fit into the agreed schedule.  Also, be sure to communicate with your GM regarding who else will be attending.  Each GM may have different policies on how many additional people can attend a CDQ, and the GM has the right to deny any additional participants over a given number. Please respect the limits that the GM sets.
 6. Enjoy your CDQ!
 Sign in before your CDQ time and be ready to quest. Have any other participants do the same. Have fun.  Act as your character would. Remember that the purpose of all CDQs is character development.  Do the best you can, and enjoy the ride.
 [SIZE=18]What happens after the CDQ is done? When can I take another one?[/SIZE]
 After the CDQ is done, what happens is partly up to you. As the primary purpose is character development of some sort, even if the stated objective of the CDQ was not met, there was still likely some degree of development.  Whether it was a “pass” or a “fail”, work these results into the RP of your character.  If you did not meet your objective, you may of course try again with another CDQ request, if that same goal is even still valid when the CDQ is over. If you succeeded in meeting your objective, another CDQ may be desired to continue along the same development path.
Whatever the reason for wanting another CDQ, how soon you may have another CDQ will depend upon the policies of GMs who run CDQs. This is especially true if you choose to stay with the same GM for a long-term development path over multiple CDQs. You may, if appropriate, request another CDQ as soon as one is completed, but the GM has full discretion on when that next CDQ will be run.  The GM may wish to impose a waiting period for administrative reasons or for story-related reasons. The GM may also wish to work in someone else's CDQ between your CDQs.  Whatever the case, it is important for players and GMs to work together cooperatively on scheduling matters. As a reminder, a player cannot schedule another CDQ with any GM until a requested CDQ has been completed or canceled.
[SIZE=18]What about CDQs for classes?[/SIZE]
 All multiclass and Prestige Class requests must be approved by the Character Approvers. Depending on the request, the rarity of the class, supporting RP, and the presence and quality of a Character Development Thread, the Character Approvers may approve the class or may ask the player to submit for a CDQ. Players who are approved without the requirement to take a CDQ may still request one for additional RP development if they wish. Some PrCs are only available through multiple CDQs or a WLDQ. You can read more on the requirements for multiclassing and PrCs in the Character Submission Approval Policies thread.

In the case of a CDQ, the outcome of the CDQ will serve as an approval (in the case of success) or denial (in the case of failure). If the character fails his or her CDQ, the character must wait and make another attempt at a CDQ, until a CDQ is passed, or abandon the request. Further attempts are subject to the scheduling preferences of the GM.
[SIZE=18]What about WLDQs?[/SIZE]
 A WLDQ or World Leader Development Quest is a specialized type of CDQ and requires a formal application and extra approval. WLDQs are requested when a player wants to try to make their character a World Leader. Only one successful WLDQ will be run during a character's lifetime. All subsequent development quests will be CDQs.

If a character is denied for a WLDQ or fails their WLDQ, they must wait two months before requesting another attempt. Except under exceptional circumstances which will be considered on a case-by-case basis, a character may not request or take a CDQ after being approved for a WLDQ until the WLDQ is completed, and the player must until the end of the WLDQ to request a CDQ.  
More information on WLDQs, World Leaders, and requirements for both can be found in the World Leader Development Quests forum.
 What are the GM's responsibilities for CDQs?
 Besides the obvious role of running the CDQ, the GM's responsibilities touch all parts of the process. As insight into the GM side of things, here are some of the things that GMs do and consider during the CDQ process.
 A GM generally puts a good amount of thought and effort into planning the CDQ.  Rather than pull some standard off-the-shelf quest to run, a GM usually plans out a CDQ that is uniquely tailored to a single character. Often, there may be things that need approval as well.  Sometimes, the GM also takes other participants into account, including relationships between characters, abilities, influences and the like.  This is generally a lot to consider, and it only grows when more people are invited to a CDQ.  This is one of the main reasons why the player requesting a CDQ needs to be open and communicative with the GM running the quest.
 Of course another significant task that a GM must complete before the CDQ is run is setting up a mutually agreeable schedule.  This of course is a shared responsibility between GM and player, and often enough the GM is not only juggling one player's schedule but that of multiple players and perhaps multiple quests in addition to the GM's own schedule.
 A GM has a very strong responsibility to world lore when running a CDQ.  This responsibility is even greater than the responsibility to a player's stated wishes.  The GM's job is to make sure that the goals and the manner in which these goals are reached (or not, as the case may be) are in agreement with world lore.  This is really of benefit to the player, ultimately, because should the player wish to submit the character in question for World Leader down the road, events and development that do not mesh well with lore can cause problems in such situations.  
 Many people believe that a CDQ is just a formality and that one will show up, RP for a few hours and succeed in the end.  While this may happen, in truth a CDQ should be one of many paths of development for a character, and as such there is usually an element of challenge.  A GM is responsible for presenting circumstances on the CDQ whereby it is possible to successfully complete the stated goal(s).  The rest is up to the player and any other participants.  
When the goals of a character are longer-term in scope, or if there are failures along the way, multiple CDQs will often occur or even be required. Similar to planning a single CDQ, the GM also needs to chart a long-term progression in a way that makes sense in all ways and also in a way that has a schedule that makes sense.
 As should be apparent, there's a lot more at work for a GM than just running a quest. In the eyes of most GMs, there is a desire to provide an interesting and challenging experience for the player, and to do that requires a good deal of work.  Keep this in mind when working with your GM.
 What's all this about GM discretion? Why are there no more waiting periods?
 A few years ago, the community was different. It was growing rapidly, and the number of GMs available was insufficient to service an ever-increasing number of CDQ requests. The calendar became packed with more CDQs than open quests, much to the frustration of many. Sensible limits were put in place to combat this and throttle the flow of CDQ requests, requiring people to give some thought to them rather than just requesting a CDQ to get some GM time.
 Today, the community has shifted.  It is smaller and maintaining itself at a fairly stable level overall.  The sum of limits we imposed don't have the same benefit as they did, and the need for them has largely passed.  However, rather than return to a sort of free-for-all model for CDQs, we are taking a hybrid approach.  
 We are breaking from the “one size fits all” concept for CDQ timing, GM acceptance and the like in order to take a more collaborative approach.  This approach allows GMs to declare their own limits as to what sorts of CDQs they'll run and so forth.  The result, we hope, will enable a better match between players and GMs along a variety of factors.
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General Discussion / Apologies
« on: September 18, 2011, 05:52:26 am »
Hey everyone,

I want to apologise for my relative inactivity on the quest calendar. I see my role as GM as 99.9% as that of quest provider and I have been below par in this role for the last few weeks.

Want to hear my excuse? Probably not, it's nothing too exciting anyway. Just work, work and more work. If people would just stop assaulting each other, selling drugs, stealing things and generally treat others as they themselves would want to be treated, I would have heaps more time to run quests!!

That said, I have one more week of work craziness before things return to normal and I hope I shall be able to run a scheduled open-to-all quest every week.


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Introduce Yourself / *Bounces around*
« on: September 08, 2011, 09:46:21 pm »
[SIZE=13]Ello! My name is Jennifer but I go by Jen or Jenny usually. I live in an EST time zone though I was born in Scotland and I'm now in my early 20s. I'm a little hyper so ignore the title, it seemed appropriate at the time and I couldn't think of anything better.

Last night about this time I was sitting around on a different Neverwinter Night's RP server that my boyfriend and I had discovered only 3 days ago. Despite the fact it hadn't been long enough for the feeling of novelty to wear off we were already growing tired of it. Not because we disliked the people or the setup and I wont name the server for posterity sake. Lets just that they are very grind heavy and we don't have the time to dedicate to grinds which keep us from role playing anywhere but 1-2 low level zones.

So I started googling other possibilities using my amazingly awesome google skills!... he did most of the searching. :p  

Eventually we found the main page for this community, Lyonara, which roped us in almost immediately. The further we dug the more excited we became over Layonara and the prospect of the role play that could await us here. About 2 hours into our informative research frenzy (which consisted of one of us going to the other every 2-5 minutes and exclaiming "Look at this!" or "Oh wow they have ---- here!" sometimes "dcbhd,mv,.ifdf" but that only happened when the cat walked over my keyboard) my boyfriend discovered you had an IRC chat.

He then proceeded to join it without telling me and started magically answering all the questions we had not been able to find direct answers to or at all. Of course I refused to be out-done and nearly sent myself into a tizzy trying to find answers before he could spout them to me. That is until he casually informed me he was asking people in a Layonara IRC chat all his questions.

She was not amused. >:/

So we both spent the next 15 minutes getting me set up and connected to the IRC chat where upon joining I had the delight of meeting several Layonara members. I have to say thus far you all seem like a very friendly and welcoming group. Further more I think the world you have created with meticulous detail and care is simply exquisite and I cannot wait to join it as soon as possible with boyfriend in tow.

I'm pretty sociable on most days so feel free to ask me any questions and just poke me to chat if the mood strikes you. :D [/SIZE]
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Just for Fun / If you ever wondered where orth is hiding in RL...
« on: September 06, 2011, 09:01:40 am »
So if you ever wondered where orth is hiding in RL and what he is doing... Yeah, he's living around me in Germany ... in a truck ;)  Thought you'd be interested in this little fact ^^
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Layonara Server / Announcement: Please Welcome...
« on: August 10, 2011, 02:35:04 pm »
.... Pibemanden and Geloooooo to the Character Approvers Team. They will be working with us to start moving the process along more quickly. Thanks to them for stepping into this position to help keep Layonara running as smoothly as possible.

~row (and the CA team)
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Introduce Yourself -- Game Masters / Lonnarin/Brewmaster Bob
« on: September 13, 2013, 10:21:20 pm »
GM Name: Brewmaster Forum Name: lonnarin (with an L) Bioware Name: karma_virus Time Zone: EST Availability: 7pm-11pm EST Weekdays, 10am-11pm Weekends About myself: Howdy Folks! Good to be back in action. Currently getting my bearings here, relearning how to slip back into the groove of things from the other end of the table and learning how to use all these nifty new wands and GM tools. In another week or two I'm hoping to bring back the age of the impromptus, as well as light up that calendar with a quest or two on a regular basis. I'm currently part-time, thanks to working full time, but hopefully as I become more used to the scheduling and tasks, perhaps that role may grow as well. About myself, I have been playing various RPGs in computer form since I was a wee tyke back in 1986, and D&D in pen and paper form since around 1994 onward. GMing tabletop D&D for about as long as well, and Shadowrun since about year 2000. I have played on this server since October 2004, making me semi-ancient. Not quite a Lich compared to some, but more than a whelp. My GMing style is typically less hack n slash and more social-based, though there will be plenty of both, no doubt. I try to be very malleable about how my players approach things, as there are never simply one path to take to achieve a goal. If an enemy seems too strong, try to outwit or hoodwink them, perhaps even befriend them. If a task seems too daunting, try to find a way around it. I am very open to attempting other solutions, so never feel that there is only one way to achieve your goals on my quests. Moral ambiguity is just as treasured to me as ethical extremism, there is no right or wrong way to act, as long as it falls within the server rules. I may be a bit more forthcoming with alignment adjustments than many of you may be used to, but please, never feel that these are a punishment by any means! Good people can have bad days at times, and even the most despicable of villains may feel a twang of mercy or pity once in awhile. If at any time you feel slighted by any alignment changes, please let me know! The GMs are not all knowing, telepathic bastions of omniscience, so the more input we get from you about your intentions or ambitions, the easier we can understand your own perspective of how you see your character's thought process. Also, if you are leaning towards an alignment goal, please let me know that as well and I'll try to work with you on my quests and impromptus. While it is important to play the alignment a character is approved for upon creation, it is just as much so that all of us understand that character development and enjoyment must take precedence over stagnation. That is not to say that I want to see any of you LG paladins out there suddenly slay a baby out of the blue and shout "wooot, unholy champion here I come!" because that would be a strange case to make. But if you want that neutral character to make a few steps towards the path you see your character taking, by all means send me a tell and I will offer my feedback on how they have been performing thus far and some ideas on how to accomplish this at a reasonable pace I mention these alignment note specifically because far too often I see people take the alignment adjustment as a devastating thing, or the lack thereof as a stifling speedbump in their development. Roleplay, breathe, adapt, adjust, live & learn! It's those conflicted, complex and interesting characters that make it all worthwhile. For you "action" gamers out there who are drawn to this server for its utterly awesome area design and game balance, know this; I do not consider "action" to be a dirty word on RP servers! I myself have played rather bloodthirsty and overly excitable gems in my past & present (Earl & Kurn come to mind) and by no means is Action exclusive from RP or visa versa. Some advice on filling that roll? Know your one-liners! Live the role! Your character enjoys running around and killing 200 orcs before down every day before breakfast? Have them talk it up! Be boastful, act obsessed with the idea. Those kinds of character might draw some strange glances from the folks who prefer chatting in town and discussing more interpersonal matters, but ultimately this server is here for all of us, many different character types and gaming styles. Think about how your actions fit your character's psyche and play on it. I only ask that you not camp in the same area over and over, particularly for CNR items. Try to spread out a little, test your limits and find allies to take along with you to try new areas outside of your "sweet spot" for challenge vs. XP. Exploration over grinding, what's the point of hitting lvl 20 in a month when you've only seen 1/10 of what the world has to offer? On the note subject of camping, please be respectful to others and those who run this server. This means not sticking to the same area for more than half an hour, resting, waiting for the respawn, rinsing, repeating. Instead, try adding some variety, branching out to a north path here for quick break, doubling back and trying a different form of CNR, THEN returning. It gets really boring for the other players who have to sit through long smoke breaks, 20 minute bios, staying in the same area and fighting the same circuit over and over. Also, please don't be afraid to ask me to spice things up a little if you grow bored on your trips, and likewise, to tell me if you have limited playtime and would rather spend it gathering CNR and crafting vs. having an impromptu. I totally understand the limited playtime that many of us have, and I don't want anybody ever to feel that I am derailing them from their planned schedules! Feedback is a two-way street, so I'll give you a heads up if I see you in an area too long well before any "stern warnings" or reports. The GMs are not here to punish, but to enhance the gameplay. Never assume that any spawn is there to deter you or drive you out! That is not the purpose of a spawn, but rather to add to to excitement and stem the monotony of clockwork repetition. Above all else, we GMs are also players of this world. There is no Us. vs. Them here. If you ever have an issue with any of us for any reason, please let us know via PM or tells immediately. If you feel that talking with any of us has reached a dead end or you feel uncomfortable with it, we can mediate any issues out with a meeting facilitated by Dorg, Ed, Rowanna or Leanthar, or any other GM on the team for that matter. Don't ever take things too personally, if you need to log to cool off a bit we understand. Above all, rumors, bad blood and interpersonal conflict are not worth the effort. This is a game, and games are meant to be fun. If at any time it ceases being fun for you for any reason, let us know so that we can make amends as amicably as possible. Rules for my Quests: -Please announce aloud what rolls you wish to make and send me a tell on the GM channel before you make them. Many times there will be so much chatter that they can get lost in the shuffle! We appreciate a good hearty heads-up so that we can have the NPCs react properly to your actions. -If you see my avatar appear, please hold action! It either means I need to brief you on something that has occurred OOC, or fix some great blunder on my part to prevent somebody from dying horribly. Or that there's an emergency that you need to be aware of. -I do not mind looting of gold at all on my quests. For items too, within reason. Please notify me immediately if you notice something drop that shouldn't be there, and hold onto any iffy items that might need approval for the end of a quest. Try to use common sense and not grab anything way too high level. Don't try to hide it if you find an emerald in a 10th lvl goblin cave either; between the pickup item script and our mystical GM powers we usually will know. -Please try to be respectful to you fellow players and give them a chance to speak on quests, no matter their level. And don't feel shy when you're a tiny lvl 2 on a quest of Epics to speak up and take charge! Remember the tale of the Fellowship of the Ring, where the godling wizard, the human nobles and the gruff burly dwarves all shouted and argued over the meek little hobbit on his first adventure ever? Who was it who wound op driving that tale most? Level, class and self-importance is all irrelevant compared to the will to RP, get involved and make a difference. -If you feel upset with another player over the actions of their character, take a deep breath, cool down a little and send tells about the issue with them first before getting angry. If through the tells the issue is not resolved or you feel like they are being disrespectful of you as a player, please notify us. Don't let this bad blood broil within you. Don't go to the rumor mill. Deal with the issues at the source of the interpersonal conflict and find a mediator if need be. I know this from experience! -Please keep the OOC chatter to a minimum on the party channels. This does not include however, personal emergencies, afk announcements or needing to hash something out. If at all possible however, try to keep OOC in regular "talk" mode when addressing multiple people who are present. The OOC chatter is distracting to players and GMs alike. -If the challenge rating feels too high, please let me know! I'll try to keep the mass deaths to a minimum and will adjust the situations if need be. Unless of course you're trying to do something unreasonable, then I may remind you to try a different approach. -Don't let the game interfere with your RL duties as a human being! Don't miss any work that you can get fired over, pay attention to you kids, don't be afraid to drop a quest and leave early if a baby is being fussy or your kitchen is on fire. *study for your finals* It's just a game, and no game is worth sacrificing your life over. -an in the words of Bill & Ted, "Be excellent to eachother"
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Layonara Server / Annoucement: Please Welcome...
« on: July 25, 2011, 10:35:20 pm »
... Our newest GMs to the world.





They are going to be jumping in very soon and learning their tools and tricks. In the next few months they'll be getting their feet wet in the world of running quests for you all.

Thanks again to everyone who applied and interviewed or even entertained the idea of applying for the position.


The GM Team

[SIZE=10]p.s. Please do not haze the new GMs until they have been in their new bunks for at least three weeks. Thank you.[/SIZE]
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General Discussion / Happy Birthday Lonnarin!
« on: July 08, 2011, 04:16:47 am »
Happy Birthday Lonn!

A day of excess, drinking, wild revelry and general no-goodedness.

In other words, a typical Friday except, this time, you have an excuse!!


[SIZE=10]PS. I made the text orange colour, not to offend the eye, but cos it kinda looked beer-ish.[/SIZE]
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General Discussion / Happy Birthday S0ulz
« on: July 04, 2011, 12:16:02 pm »
Hope you have a great one!
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General Discussion / LFG - You're invited!
« on: June 16, 2011, 04:11:27 am »
It's one of those rare nights. Not working, Mrs Pseudo is out and little Pseudo-ettes into bed on time.

Arkolio (and I believe Alandric) will be around on central at about 8.00pm AEST (2 hours from this post). What will happen depends on the strength of the party gathered (Arkolio's meagre combat skills will not, of course, be factored into this reckoning).

[SIZE=10]NB. Any characters attending should be prepared to be belittled and ridiculed and have Ark take credit for any good work they do and be prepared to take the blame for anything that may go wrong. Likewise, characters should be prepared to hear Ark boast endlessly when he happens to wipe off the final 5 HPs of the enemy despite the fact that you accounted for the other 995 HPs. Also, characters attending might reasonably expect to have their names purposefully mispronounced, their manhood questioned (both versions of the noun) and their partners propositioned.

Female PCs will probably reasonably think the males got off easy.
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Layonara Server / Version 3.30.5 is online!
« on: June 08, 2011, 11:29:11 am »
[SIZE=32]Version 3.30.5 is online![/SIZE]
  • Adjustments to Kuhl areas and Fort of Last Hope to reflect plot/finale events
  • Adjustments to Audira and a few nearby areas to reflect plot/finale events
  • Adjustments to Parched Hills cave to reflect plot/finale events
  • Adjustments to Mount Thil and Voltrex to reflect volcanic activity
  • Added Siphe Garra
  • Fixed Titanium Enchancement II and III to have correct tagging
That's it!

Oh and in case no one has noticed, there should now (as of the prior reset) be a recipe for Ancient Dire Bear slings.

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Wait what? A submission for something other than a Soulstrand Reimbursement? O.o

WLCDQ Application: Hardragh
Character Name: Hardragh
Current Level: 35

Original Submission
Skald Prc Submission

Chaotic Tides
Backroom Chatter
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General Discussion / Resigning as GM
« on: May 31, 2011, 04:40:17 am »
It is time for me to hand my GM batch to another.

The plot is nearing its end and the remaining parts are in very capable hands. ;)

So, after more years than I care to count I am resigning from my position as GM in Layonara's amazing Team of GMs.

Before I move on to being 'just' a player I have one thing I would like to ask all you players out there:

At times on quests where you feel wronged or feel that the outcome was not fair, please try to remember why the GMs are here. They are here to make this world around your characters a living and breathing entity that provides you with entertainment and fun. That is the basic idea.

So, instead of taking the fight to the GM and/or the Team, try to consider whether the incident in question is one that your character might deal with in an IC fashion - perhaps that was the intent of the GM in the first place.

Like you, GMs are people and people will walk away if you rattle them enough. After all, they are not acting GMs for their own sake, but for the sake of others.

This was not based on a recent episode or a current situation in game. Please consider this a plea that you might consider in the future. I have seen it happen too many times over the years and it simply burns people out, which ends up making this place less colourful and alive.

Finally, I wish you all the very best of luck and hope that many of you will continue to contribute to this magical place that is Layonara. For me the time has come to move on, although I will probably be around with Kobal now and then.

Kind regards,

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