…Failure to Communicate!

Okay, I’m going to upset a lot of people here, so brace yourselves…

Ready?

ROLEPLAYERS ANNOY THE HELL OUT OF ME. (Not just the idiots that appealed Bottom, I mean.)

Okay, okay, not every roleplayer. You want to roleplay that you’re Duncan McDoofus of the Wanker line of wizardry, hey, more power to you! I like playing with normal roleplayers. But the people that really, really annoy me are the SUPER roleplayers. Know these guys? They’re the ones that are SO into their character, they have to type in an accent. And not just any accent, either!

A SUPER UNINTELLIGIBLE ACCENT THAT WOULD MAKE MICKEY O’ NEIL CONFUSED!

Look, I’m all for throwing in some accent to ‘get into the mood.’ Saying things like “Aye, lass” and “I canna’ imagine such a thang” are fine. Even “She canna take much more o’ this, cap’n!” That’s understandable, not confusing, and pretty clear what you’re communicating. Let’s take a look at an example, shall we?

“Blast! I’m afraid we canna get ta tha keep in time, lad. Ye’ll have ta hold ’em off yerselves!”

Now, from this statement, we can understand the following:

  1. The speaker is speaking with what appears to be a Scottish accent.
  2. She is telling us her party cannot get to the keep to help with the defense in a timely fashion.
  3. The defense of said keep will fall upon those of us that are there.

Not too confusing, right?

Now let’s take a look at some… accented… speaking I heard tonite:

“Ach! Dis n gun do. Sure n us’n keen fin a wey tru dem devendurs. Ye’s gun haf ta hol dem walls yeself.”

From this statement, we can understand the following:

  1. Jack
  2. Shit

And I’m not so sure I understood the Jack part.

Hey, you want to roleplay the part of a barbaric… brain-damaged… um… confused… did I say brain-damaged?… stupid… umm… (some nationality that probably perished when one of their members tried to tell the others that his feet hurt and resulted in the rest of them thinking he said the Lord told him they should all throw themselves off of a cliff)… person. That is your right. Feel free!

However, you need to understand that everyone around you does not speak Idiot. Some of us are barely fluent in English, and although they may share the same linguistic origins, I assure you, the two have parted long, long ago (except for “inflammable” – that word’s still left over from Idiot). So if you begin to ask everyone around you for help speaking Idiot, or attempt to organize a raid speaking Idiot, or even mention to someone in Idiot that you are currently on fire, and would they, if they could, be so kind as to put you out? – don’t be surprised if everyone ignores you. Or simply piles kindling on the flames.

I mean, come on – back in the real world where your mother’s basement is your Lair of Doom and you routinely post to message boards that the correct pronunciation is “KEL-tic, not SEL-tic,” surely some part of you must be aware that the natural reaction of humans when faced with someone speaking a foreign tongue is to a) see if you can trick them into saying dirty words in your language, or b) see if they’ll teach you dirty words in their language. An interesting footnote here: I once had the ambition to learn how to say, “I didn’t do it!” in as many languages as possible. So far, I can only manage to say it in English and Klingon. Honest.

I appreciate your character was raised by wolves and barely grasped the concept of walking upright, let alone doing this crazy thing called “cooking your food” and not urinating on your bed to mark your territory. That’s swell. I admire your creativity. Hell, I applaud your dedication. But you have to keep in mind that part of role-playing is the PLAYING part. You have to give some leeway to the people around you – if it’s that important to you, hey, speak however you want. Grunt and thump your chest for all I care. But if you’re trying to tell someone something important, like “Hey, there’s 500 Mids over the next hill asking to borrow a cup of sugar,” a smart idea would be to suspend the heavy accent, communicate your message in clear, concise tones, and then get back to your picking flees from your pelt or rolling in the mud or humping a tree or whatever is important to your character.

Everyone around you will be very grateful to you. They might even take pity on you and role-play the part of the benevolent master that takes you under their wing to teach you the finer skills like bathing, walking upright and why fire bad!

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