Lines in the Sand
Conduct and Policies
The Golden Rule: Treat others how you wish to be treated.
Everyone on this server is here to have a good time. We're all here to tell some stories, roll some virtual dice, and make friends along the way. In general, we expect both players and staff to be nice, to be cooperative, to be open to others' viewpoints and senses of humor, and to be mature. This doesn't mean that conflicts won't happen. Opinions may differ and conflicts may arise, and that's both fine and to be expected. When in doubt, refer to the golden rule above. Should even that fail, not to worry! Below are some guidelines for diffusing conflict and for resolving any issues that might be more complex than the rules account for. As we expect conflict to occur, we don't shy away from it or punish people simply for experiencing it or bringing it to the staff's attention. After all, proper conflict resolution requires proper acknowledgement to begin with, and so any player should always feel comfortable pursuing the resolution of a given conflict.
These are general behavioral guidelines for general chatrooms and otherwise OOC behavior.
- Do not engage in racist, sexist, or hateful or otherwise xenophobic discussion on the chat (not even ironically).
- Do not insult other players or staff.
- If somebody is made uncomfortable by your behavior and says so, the behavior must stop, even if it's good-intentioned.
- Respect each other.
- Keep IC (in-character) drama and OOC (out-of-character) drama separate.
- Do not edit, create, or delete Categories.
- All players must be 18+ years old to play in this game.
Breaking the above rules is grounds for a ban within staff discretion. Should a matter arise that is more complex than the above guidelines can handle on their own, the following policy will be applied.
If hostility arises between yourself and another member and there doesn't seem to be an easy means of diffusing or resolving the matter, it might be best to exit that interaction and contact an administrator or mediator. Do not contact a Storyteller, even though they are staff. Their focus is the health of the game and story. Administrators and mediators are there, in part, to handle interpersonal conflict and to try to reach understanding between parties. If the conflict is with a staff member, feel free to bring it up with another one. Administrative or game-running duty does not put anyone above or below anyone else.
The steps to take are as follows:
- Send a DM to an administrator or mediator. Be clear about the nature of the situation. Identify why you feel the need for mediation and who is involved as well as you can. If you can provide screenshots of the relevant interactions, do so.
- Await Staff Response. We will read over your DM and likely contact any relevant parties. Expect us to speak further with you about the issue, and eventually to sit down and speak with both us and whomever else is involved to resolve the issue. If we can resolve it without that, we will, but honest and open communication is generally best.
- Feedback. Expect that we will touch base with you later, after mediation, see if the issues that were brought up have been satisfyingly resolved or not. We'll give it some time, as some adjustments take time to integrate. But if you feel that the issue hasn't been resolved or otherwise want to reach out to us again before we reach out to you, feel free.
Chronicles of Darkness is, appropriately, a dark and mature setting, featuring dark and mature stories. This doesn't mean we plan on everything being edgy all the time, but it means that we're not going to shy away from dark or mature content. This includes violence, profanity, sexuality, and so on. It is a forthright concession of the Chronicles of Darkness game system that it is an adult game, and we have no intention of changing that. Even so, a safe and supportive game environment is one of the core philosophies holding up Lines in the Sand. Players and staff should always be checking in with one another regarding comfort level and content. Another one of the core philosophies with which we are approaching this game is narrative permissiveness: we want to work with players to tell the stories they want to tell. RPGs of any kind that involve more than one person will always involve collaboration and compromise, and game cohesion remains important even still, as does player comfort and, of course, fun.
Below are rules for IC conduct regarding sensitive story/writing content:
- Do not rape anyone. CofD chronicles will often involve abuse, often tinged with sexuality (hard not to when Vampire is one of the involved game lines) but it's a subject to be treated delicately nonetheless. If you want to tell a story IC that involves sexual abuse, or especially sexual assault, and you can't accomplish that off-screen, then everyone involved must know what they're playing and give their explicit consent beforehand. If the scene occurs and people find that they're no longer comfortable, their consent is revokable, up to and including total retcon of the scene.
- Do not brutally murder children. In general, shy away from placing children in danger. Sometimes it can be a fun angle (IT, Stranger Things, etc) but those are usually stories that feature the children as protagonists, not pawns or plot devices, and this isn't a game where people will be playing children.
- No ERP in public channels. We have nothing against sexuality or stories that involve it – it is as valid a topic as any. But if the scene is just two characters doing their thing – on discord, we don't have private rooms. It's best to keep explicit ERP completely off the server. Also, this should be obvious, ERP requires consent. Pressuring somebody OOC for ERP is an immediately ban-able offense, under staff discretion.
- No Metagaming. Metagaming is the practice of using out-of-character information that your character would not have to inform in-character action. Your PC can't get revenge for a murder they don't know about. This is considered a form of cheating.
- PvP is allowed. Conflict between PCs is expected and allowed. But PvP should not happen "to win;" it should always be for the sake of the story. In general, we trust everyone here to have their conflicts as they want, but if somebody wants an ST to mediate, the scene is on-hold until that can
We keep a public list of those banned from the server for the sake of transparency. This is not meant as public shaming — we are not happy to have any bans and do not want to parade it around. But Lines in the Sand is meant as a cooperative space to enjoy a hobby, and we believe honesty is important. This will also help to avoid anyone who may try to circumvent a ban in the future.
Under staff discretion, bans can be lifted, should the inciting problem be resolveable and the banned users agree to our conduct policies moving forward.