The Red Quill Myth
It´s funny, that that conversation I had with the clickers of Sleipnir and Michael Aridfox should have such an impact later on. At the time, we didn´t know what we went into. And we didn´t know how much this would change how the game felt either. When I first started playing, roleplaying wasn´t something players did. Mostly because the beta was open to all, and many had a zillion characters, loads of snerts. The environment wasn´t the best. Clanlord also didn´t have so much of a backdrop. There were some tales, legends and myths. I made sure Babajaga heard them all from older players, but there seemed to be a vast hole there. So the idea of RQ took form in our heads. A clan devoted to roleplaying and making and collecting of stories. A creative melting pot if you will.
Neither of the founders had done anything like this before, but we learned on the way. And, for some reason or another, I can´t remember now, RQ became famous over night. And grew quickly. We seemed to have hit the nail on the head, as many roleplayers emerged from their closets wanting to be a part of this new clan. We also attracted many players that wanted someone to interact with, someone that would react in an IC manner when approached. Wearing that quill became synonyme with roleplaying. And we were simply overrun. Sleipnir and Babajaga for example couldn´t leave town, and we had to sneak out sometimes, because there were so many characters that wanted to interact with them. We met a hunger for roleplaying and stories that was quite amazing. What we did, was to create a space where roleplaying was accepted, and even anticipated.
And at one point, we became more visible to those outside than we were to ourself. While most Cl-players see RQ for what it is, some have this skewed perception of it. It´s the classic example of a feather that became to 10 hens. We are the "clan of GMs, favorites, have loads of cool items etc etc etc."
We sometimes have players that have heard all these stories and wants to join RQ because of them. When they find out that we don´t have any cool items, that we have to depart after our hunts as everyone else etc.. they are not so interested anymore. Sleipnir is the only one in RQ with an unique item. He has a shovel, because he lost a bet with Chum. Sleipnir had to shovel dung from the healer temple for weeks, to great amusement for a lot more players than only hwc for Sleipnir. Think a dung-shovel is a "cool item"? That is your problem...
By Sir West´s grave a player is saying: Why do RQ always gets the cool stuff." Errr.. Sir West is the one of the two characters that has DIED ingame, as a result of a long story - and not only hit the library never to be seen again. You do that with one of your main characters that has grown relationships over a long period of time. If Urgelt ever DIES, I bet there will be raised a statue over him, or at least a grave- so with many other characters. As usual, one of the RQ characters was only the first.
So , we don´t have any cool items, we never pray to get rescued after a clanhunt, we don´t get any free favours, and rankwise - RQ is not the strongest clan out there to put it mildly. What RQ is , is a bunch of well build characters with stories, relationships, enemies and friends, with search for knowledge as it´s prime goal, that is IC 99, 99% of the time and with mature players. They entertain themselves, and do not wait to be entertained. Other clans have characters like that, but RQ is pretty homogenic in that respect.
You can put an RQ member in almost any kind of IC situation, and you can be sure the reaction will be IC as well. RQ characters are not interested in the man behind the curtain, and they couldn´t care less about the " XXXXX is a GM !". They react to the IC characters, not the players.
They do their thing, whether a GM is interested or not. Whether it´s all alone, with 1 exile or 50. The goal is not "Look at me" or "I want a cool item", the goal is what the character wants and the many swings the road provides. If any other players (including GMs) wants to play along, that´s cool, If not, that is cool too.
Being in a clan is very much a player choice for me, and not so much a characterchoice. IC there are more than just RQ Baba could be a member of, but I need to feel at home with the players in the clan as well. And that is the most important aspect. There are simply some clans out there that I would never feel comfortable in. RQ is a player haven for me.