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Forums : Information Desk > Raven Guard Culture and History Handbook (aka background and culture)
Levissa (SuperAdmin) 10/30/2007 6:54 AM EST : Raven Guard Culture and History Handbook (aka backgro...
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Previously written by Khord

Preface

Thisis a rather catch-all category that contains several documentsexplaining who we are and what our goals and dreams are.  It contains amixture of IC and OOC information that will helpfully illustrate who weare.  Culture is a very important aspect of Raven Guard, as it gives usa unique identity and allows us to stand out on the server, not onlyfor our great members and reputation, but also as a visable force thatis striving to do something different.  Please take a few moments toreview the below documents, as they are as important if not more so,then our rules and policies.

Thank you,
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Levissa (SuperAdmin) 10/30/2007 7:02 AM EST : RE: Raven Guard Culture and History Handbook (aka bac...
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Mission Statement

RavenGuard was founded to provide a supportive environment for players thatwant to get the best of both worlds; Roleplay & Raiding.  We firmlybelieve that it is entirely possible to be both a roleplayer and araider, and don't believe either term is mutually exclusive.  RavenGuard is committed to giving our membership that opportunity, all thewhile supporting the server community and being respectful, responsibleplayers at all times.

Goals

  • Provide an environment that is supportive of both Roleplay & Raiding without leading to the exclusion of either
  • Foster a NO DRAMA atmosphere where guild mates can be comfortable expressing their creativity and ideas
  • Have fun and enjoy everything our games have to offer, while remaining respectful and forthright members of the server community
  • Createa vibrant community of respectful, creative, players that encourage andsupport each other, both in game and in real life.
  • Establish a reputation on the server of excellence, both in raiding, roleplay and community interaction and involvement.
Core Values

  • NO DRAMA-- We accept mature individuals only, that can accept and giveconstructive criticism, without being hurtful or petty.  Gossip,backstabbing and slander are unacceptable.
  • Excellence -- In everything we do, we will always do our best, be it roleplay or raiding.
  • Respect--  No matter how passionate we might feel about an issue orsituation,  you must always remember there is a person behind thecharacter that is worthy of respect.
  • Fun -- This is a game, it has to be fun.  Even the most serious situation in the game should be enjoyable to all parties involved.
  • Responsibility-- When we say we are going to do something, we follow though.  When wecommit ourselves to an event, we understand that we have to see theevent though to completion, to the best of our abilities.  We takeresponsibility for our actions and the effects they have on others.
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Levissa (SuperAdmin) 10/30/2007 7:06 AM EST : RE: Raven Guard Culture and History Handbook (aka bac...
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Greetings,

This document is a guide to the theme and tone ofRaven Guard.  It discusses things in a frank, OOC matter.  Pleaseremember that anything discussed with in refers to In-Character items,OOC mechanics will be left for other documents.

Theme & Tone


RavenGuard is structured to be a medieval, sword and scorcery type mercenaryguild.  Its ranks and traditions are meant to enforce that theme inpractice and are there to help our members roleplay with in the theme. They are -not- meant to force players into a particular set of actions,as I believe that everyone should have the freedom to play within ourmercenary theme, as long as they are respectful and don't break it.

Weare not, however, a strict military unit.  We do have ranks, but theyare very loose.  We do have a command structure, but you wont be forcedto run laps for making a joke or having a bit of fun at an officersexpense.  Of course, punishments can be dealt out for infractions suchas a dock in IC pay, a few lashes, or some unpleasant duty, likemucking out the stables or emptying latrines.  Generally though, suchthings are -supposed- to be fun for the playersinvolved, even if the character might grumble and shuffle their feet. Its important to remember that rank is NOT meant to be a RP crowbar,forcing scenes to go as you wish.  That wont be tolerated and isgrounds for a discussion and possibly demotion in ooc rank.

TheTone should be well trained mercenaries to the outside world, with agood bit of good natured ribbing and competition amongst members withinthe Guard.  It should feel somewhat relaxed, from a roleplay standpoint, as members are free to cajole and have a good time with theirfellow soldiers.  After all, results and completed "contracts" pay thebills, not social niceties or the ability to stand in formation forhours.

Traditions are an important part of the theme and tone ofRaven Guard, and two of the big ones are saluting, our war cry andmuster, all of which are detailed HERE All three of this are very useful in helping people really get intocharacter and play within the mercenary theme that we are trying toportray here.  That said, it needs to be understood that things likesaluting are not REQUIRED.  Musteralso, on the surface, could look like a very stuffy event, but itsimportant to remember that we want -everyone- to have fun, not just afew select folks that get to talk and parade around. 

Our ideaof muster, the best way to describe it, is like the Scots lining up todo battle in Braveheart.  A rowdy bunch of troops, talking amongstthemselves and  getting excited before going out to war.  We do have asmall bit of structure there, in that we ask folks to line themselvesup long enough to get paid, but that part of muster should be five -ten minutes at most.. the bulk of muster and the real information parthappens after.  The purpose of lining up is to get everyone involved! It lets us handle the rp aspect of paying our troops, and then we allhuddle around the leaders to handle promotions, congrats, to be briefedon the nights contract and other quick official stuff.

We really want muster to be a FUN & INTERACTIVE event!

So, in closing...

You can Expect to See:
  • To have the freedom to play within the theme and tone of Raven Guard
  • A loose rank structure that -does- involve some IC privilege, but isn't oppressive and strict
  • Amuster, salute, and war cry that fosters a feeling of belonging tosomething real, but that doesn't force a particular style of roleplayon you.
  • A fun and supportive environment, with a strong theme to build rp around
What you can Expect NOT to See:
  • Forced compliance to strict IC rules
  • Rank being used to push others around
  • Long, boring, Muster that seems to go on for hours and only involved a couple people talking
  • IC punishments being dangled over your head for minor infractions
  • Strict military discipline.
Ihope this helps clear up some misconceptions and gives everyone abetter idea of our goals with policy.  Sometimes we might not expresslysay something, but please, any policy we release view through the lensof this document.

For the Guard,
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Levissa (SuperAdmin) 10/30/2007 7:06 AM EST : RE: Raven Guard Culture and History Handbook (aka bac...
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Pay Day

Raven Guard Muster

RavenGuard will muster every Saturday at 7 p.m. (CST) at a location to beannounced.  Upon arrival Trooper through Commissar will arrangethemselves in ranks of five (5).  A Captain or Ambassador will beavailable to assist in lining up, but do your best without their help.

Recruitsare NOT to line up with the Troopers, but should form a separate set ofranks off to the right side of the main formation.  Recruits should notface forward, but face the rest of the Guard so that they can see theexample they are expected to live up to.

The Commander and Ambassadors will stand before the company, with the Captains behind them.

Example:

(back)
Mercenaries    R i
Mercenaries    e t
Mercenaries    c s
Mercenaries    r
Mercenaries    u

Command
Officers
(front)


You -must-have your gear in full 100% repair before attending Muster.  Thosefailing to do so will be called out before the Guard.  Be prepared withall potions, repair kits and resist gear you will need for the nightscontract.

Muster will begin with the Captains assigned to Paywalking the ranks and paying the weekly stipend.  All Troopers and upare allowed to speak freely during this time but must hold ranks. Recruits are to remain silent.  Once pay has been distributed a "GatherAround!" command will be given by the Commander or Ambassador and allGuard are to rush forward and form a circle around the Commander andAmbassadors, (this is often called "Flocking" as it gives theappearance of birds rushing to flock).

The details of thenight's contract, as well as any other information and promotions willbe handed out at this time.  All Guard members are expected to remainrespectful of the Command and allow orders and business to be conductedquickly, so that the Guard can move on to more profitable endeavors.

Onceall business is finished, the Command will call out the war cry and theGuard will give the battle-salute, (see below) after which thoseassigned will head to their contract, and others are dismissed to goabout their business or carry out individual or group assignments.

Salute and War Cry

Thetraditional Raven Guard war cry is the simple "For the Guard!"typically coupled with a drawn weapon, either to crush an opponent orto signify the owner's weapon serves the Guard.  It is a shortened formof saying "My weapon for the Guard!"  This call is used in greetings,to end meetings, and also during battle.

The Raven Guard usestwo different salutes.  The first is used exclusively in the guildhalls, or other areas where drawing a weapon might be considered clumsyor a breach of etiquette.  A tight fist is made with the right hand andheld over the heart, closed palm facing toward the chest while standingstraight at attention.  The salute is always coupled with a "For theGuard!"
((/em places fist over heart.
/say For the Guard!))

Thesecond salute is used in the field and during battle, and is refered toas the "battle-salute."  A weapon is drawn and presented forward in anon-threatening, but ready, position.  "For the Guard!" is called outto show the willingness to use the weapon for the Guard's cause.
((/brandish
/say For the Guard!))


Please see our CALENDAR for details on this week's Pay Day time and place.
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Levissa (SuperAdmin) 10/30/2007 7:15 AM EST : RE: Raven Guard Culture and History Handbook (aka bac...
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Preface

This document will seek to clear up the meaning of our rank system,from both an IC and OOC point of view.  Each rank will have its ownbrief write up, explaining the IC significance and purpose, followed bya small ooc section detailing the same.  A core value of our ranksystem is to have as little division as possible.  We want to avoidcreating an "Us vs Them" situation where people of various ranks havean issue with those above or below them.  Another goal was to make aclear, simple, system that allowed members to be rewarded with IC andOOC "perks" for good performance as they move up the ranks, but notcreate a situation where the lowest rank ever felt disrespected on oruninvolved.

Pleasenote that it is EXTREMLY important to understand the difference betweenIC rank and OOC rank.  While it might be acceptable for a Sgt to give aTrooper somewhat of a hard time IC, it is COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE FOR ANYONE TO USE RANK AS A MEANS OF CONTROLLING ANOTHER PERSON OR THEIR ROLEPLAY OOCLY! We really can't stress enough that respect amongst our members isparamount, regardless of rank, and everyone will be treated fairly andwith respect.

Rank and What it Means

Commander

IC

The Commander leads the Guard, and their authority is not to bequestioned.  They negotiate the Guard's contracts, set payscale, andgenerally manage the Raven Guard at the highest level.  The Commander doesnot get a stipend, they dip their hands into the coffers as theyplease.  Its good to be in charge...  The Commander is responsible forall of the hiring and firing of the Guard, and generally rely heavilyon those beneath them to assist in the work load

OOC

The Commander is the guild leader and works with the other officers to set guildpolicy.  They work with other guilds and server leaders to ensure that Raven Guard remains involved and active in the community.  They helpcoordinate the efforts of the other officers, assign work projects, anddo their best to make sure all members feel involved.  It is an almostexclusively administrative position, coupled with some strong areas ofguild wide decision making.  Also note that the Commander absolutely can and should be questioned OOCly, and that no member should be afraid to approach them with questions or comments.

Ambassadors

IC

Ambassadors serveas the highest ranking officer in the Guard, and answer only to theCommander.  They are given authority to lead in the field and atheadquarters, and their word is to be taken as if it was uttered inperson by the Commander.  Their authority is limited in scope only to theCommander's whims, but generally they serve as advisors and fieldgenerals. 

Ambassadors are given a percentage of the Guard's overall profit, afterexpenses, from completed contracts, and work hard to ensure that theGuard is successful.

OOC

Ambassadorsare considered to have the same authority of the Commander when theCommander isn't around, as far as making day to day decisions go. Long term plans should be left to the Commander, but an Ambassador isentrusted to make quick decisions if needed for the health or happinessof the guild.  Ambassadors are expected to work with the other officersonprojects and fill in where needed if not assigned a specific duty.  Inall intensive purposes, Ambassadors are considered the second incommand.

Captain

IC

Captains are the most senior Guard members, having been chosen fortheir extreme loyalty, efficiency, and eye on the bottom line.  Theyunderstand how the Guard works internally, and are well suited toadvise the Ambassadors and Commander on the best course of action. Individually, each Captain is typically given a specific task to oversee, but together they form a powerful band of advisors and seneschal,constantly looking out for the Guard's best interest and their own coinpurses.

Captains are given a large stipend, as set by the Commander, typicallypaid on the first Saturday of the month and presented before the restof the Guard during muster.

OOC

Captains make up the core of the officers, taking on specific duties andadvising the leadership on key issues.  They generally focus on asingle specific area, but each officer is suppose to assist the other,making sure that no one is over burdened or over worked. 

Commissar

IC

Commissar are the most dedicated and hardened troops amongst theGuard.  Their tenacity in battle has been proven time and time again,and they are worth more then their weight in gold.  They serve as thepinnacle of what it means to be a member of the Guard, in some ways evenmore so then the officers... A commissar has earned every scar andblemish on their body and soul, simply through service to the Guard. Commissars are often assigned specific tasks by the Officers, and areparticularly used for leading other groups of troops on contracts.

Commissars are paid in person by the Commander.  Their salary isn't amatter of public discourse, but its universally accepted they are very,very well compensated for their unquestionable loyalty and service.

OOC

Commissaris the highest non-officer rank in the guild.  They are exemplaryguildmates that embody what it means to be a member of the guild.  Theyhave a great attitude, are helpful and kind, and do their best to makesure that everyone around them has a better time in game.  Beingawarded this rank is a real privilege.. it means that you have goneWAY above and beyond what can be expected of a general member, andmeans you aren't only a part of what Raven Guard is, but a strongexample of what we want Raven Guard to be.

Sergeant

IC

Sergeant is a position of prestige in the Guard.  They haveearned the respect of their fellow mercenaries so much that they areaccepted as leaders amongst the typically difficult to manage rabble. They stand out as commanding figures that work to lead and support thegoals of the Guard amongst the general members.  Sergeants are oftentimes given small, short term assignments, and are considered to havethe ability to give orders to Mercenaries and below if the conditionsare warranted.  Abuse of such privilege isn't unheard of, but aSergeant that pushes their powers too far tends to end up a deadSergeant.  After all, respect can only be pushed so far before it breaks.

Sergeants are paid with the rest of the troops, weekly.  Theirstipend is set by the Commanders and is generally a few coins higherthen their Mercenary brethren.

OOC

Sergeantsare the first step up along the reward ladder, as far as rank goes. They are guildmates that have stepped up and shown they are loyal andreally committed to the goals and theme of Raven Guard.  Often times,Sergeants will be given a task or area of importance to oversee, but arealways assigned to a Captain.  They are assistants, not project leads,but very important in seeing that things get done.

Mercenary

IC

Mercenaries make up the core of Raven Guard.  They are paidprofessionals that make contract completion possible.  They are a roughand tumble lot, from various backgrounds and locations, but togetherthey are a powerful force to be reckoned with.  A common saying amongstthe Guard is, "Nothing gets done unless its on the back of a merc," andthe saying holds true.  They are the backbone of the Guard, a skilled,competent fighting force willing to do what it takes to get the jobdone.

Mercenaries are paid weekly, just like Sergeants, but receive slightly less pay.

OOC

The Mercenaryrank is filled with those that are interested in supporting the goalsof the guild and seeing it be successful.  To call them "general"members isn't a fair term, as we expect a lot out of this rank.  Whenall is said and done, the other ranks really exist to support the mercsand make the game more fun for us all.  Mercs are expected toparticipate in guild events, vote on recruits and help out on variousprojects.

Trooper

IC

Troopersare just beginning to get accustomed to life as a real mercenary. Having just been moved up from recruit, they are quickly acclimated tolife amongst the Raven Guard, yet as still unproven on thebattlefield.  Trooper is really the make-or-break point for most peoplewanting to become mercenaries.  Either they adapt and overcome thecajoling and taunts of more senior members, or they wash out and returnto their normal life.

Troopers are paid, although it is barelyenough to cover their living and equipment expenses.  They are giventheir stipend at the same time as the Mercenaries, all though its is aconsiderably smaller coin purse.

OOC

Troopersare recruits that have received enough votes, and put enough time in,to be considered full guild members.  Troopers are expected to live upto the standards of the guild, act with responsibility and honor, andgenerally get friendly with the rest of the guild.  While troopersmight be teased a bit IC, they are never disrespected oocly. 

Trooperis also the rank where we place alts.  All alts are clearly marked inOfficer notes as to avoid confusion as to whom is whom, oocly.

Recruit

IC

Recruitsare fresh faced new soldiers eager to make their living under thesword.  They have a desire to earn their place amongst the Guard, andare expected to work hard.  Punishments are given freely, and praise isfew and far between for a recruit.  Life amongst the Guard can bedifficult, and most members consider it a privilege to kick around therecruits a bit.  If they make it, it will only make them tougher, andtough and mercenary are nearly synonyms.

OOC

Recruitsare interested parties that have passed both their IC and OOC interviews.  They areallowed into the guild and can see guild chat, but have no displayedguild tag.  This is done so that they have EVERY opportunity to meet andinteract with long standing members, but if there is some issue thatarises, they won't embarrass the guild with their behavior.  We WANT ourrecruits to succeed!  So we provide every opportunity and resource forthem to do so.  Again, good natured ribbing and cajoling is restrictedto completely IC.  A recruit can expect to be supported and aided withany ooc issue or concern that might arise.
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