Frequently Asked Questions
From Kushiel's Debut Wiki
This page is dedicated to some questions the staff get asked frequently about the game, and to a few other things that we think would be helpful to know for both new players and old.
Q: What are the Kushiel books about? I heard they are BDSM Erotica. Is Kushiel's Debut an erotica/BDSM focused game?
A: There is information all over our wiki describing and explaining the themes of the Kushiel’s Lecagy books. (References here). They are considered fantasy novels, (sometimes ‘Erotic Fantasy’ by some booksellers) but that is just one aspect of the setting. KD is not an Erotica/BDSM game, though there are certainly players who TS and that kind of rp is available. It is mostly a game about intrigue, politics, and the occasional religious/supernatural element. There is no more TS focus here than on any other game that allows it at all.
Q: Is this a PvE, PvP or PvW game? How do the systems support that?
A: Kushiel’s debut is all of those things at once, though PvW (Player(s) vs World) and PvP (Player vs Player) are more commonly found. It is a noble setting that is rife with ‘frock drama’ and intrigue, with powerful noble families competing with one another for title, position, influence and more. There are also larger stories (sometimes referred to as meta-plot though the definition of what is meta-plot can vary from game to game. These are storylines that unite most player characters against a common enemy, (usually designed and sometimes even played by Staff members). For the most part players can choose which of these aspects they want to get involved in, and find other players and staff who can help them hook up with the kind of stories they are looking for. Keep in mind there is also ‘downtime’ where staff have paused in running major plots and players create their own stories either by just acting on the aspects of ‘frock drama’ or in creating and participating in PrPs.
Q: What kind of PvP is present in this game? Do I have to fear getting killed off for looking the wrong person in the eye?
A; Much of the PvP in Kushiel’s debut is the subtle stuff of a royal court. Rumors, spying, lying, betrayal, acting as a double agent between two enemy groups, etc. The ‘penalties’ for failing this kind of PvP is usually losing face and reputation, but can sometimes be harsher. Ducs can banish nobles from their lands, the royal family can strip nobles of their titles, there are even trials for issues dubbed as crimes, such as spying, treason, and even attempted murder.
This is not to say that physical consequences (such as fights, kidnappings, even murder) do not -ever- happen in this setting. It is possible to lose your character’s life in the course of play. Generally however this is not a random occurrence, nor something that happens for something as simple as giving a powerful warrior the stink eye, or another PC playing a notorious murderer and picking your PC as a victim randomly.
Q: What if I am paranoid regarding PvP in general? Do I have to engage in it?
A: Don’t be paranoid! Player competition (character competition really) can be fun. What would the story of Anne Boleyn be without her triumph over Katherine of Aragon and usurping of her title. What would it be without her eventual falling from grace and losing King Henry’s support as well as that of her entire family! A yawnfest!
We don’t -require- players to seek out and participate in PvP style roleplay, though we also cannot promise that it won’t find them depending on what they do on the game. It is however certainly possible to play a sweet noblewoman with no ambition who never wishes anyone harm, or a courtesan or priest so devoted to the service of the Angels that political and conflict plots never seem to touch them. If you are creating a character and still wondering about this, talk to people on Newbie or to staff and we will do what we can to set you up with potential for lots of PvP competition or for as little as possible!
Q: How does the Night Court work in the game? What do courtesan characters get to do and what are they restricted from?
A: The Night Court (link to info here) is more than just the sum of its parts. Particular houses, or several houses when banded together, can have a marked effect on the religion, politics, and cultural life of the City of Elua. Many players who roll up courtesans or adepts prefer social rp and that is perfectly fine. It is not a restriction however...there have been courtesans who spied on their patrons and sold information, courtesans who assisted favorite patrons in political schemes of various kinds, there are an endless array of possibilities. Do keep in mind that fully marqued courtesans have the most freedom, they can come and go as they please and live their lives generally as they’d prefer to, provided they do not disgrace the House they still serve. Adepts have a more limited amount of freedom, they still owe a debt to their house and thus have to answer to their Dowaynes. Novices have the least amount of freedom at all...typically they are not allowed off of the Mont without an escort and can not always participate in every story. We also want it understood that playing a courtesan is not necessarily starting with a novice, having a debut party, earning their way up from adept to courtesan and then enjoying being fully marqued. Making one’s marque should take IC years, and characters who roll up novices or adepts who have just begun working towards their marque should not expect it to be completed quickly. It may be that such characters will spend their time on the game as an adept, and that exploring other stages of life will be for alts.
Q: Can I play a merchant or a commoner? What can I expect if I do?
A: Yes you can! We generally advise new players to start with a noble or a courtesan because it is easier to get connections that way and to slip right into play. However it is certainly possible to have fun as a merchant or commoner, because we have people who do it and enjoy it. A merchant who sells things to the upper classes could start getting hooked into rp that way. Commoners could be members of things like the Thieves Guild, or be artists or actors or other types that would have reason to mingle with the nobles and the Mont. Just be creative and be prepared to work a little more at getting into things!
Q: What do I do to get engaged in storylines? I want more than just social plot.
A: There’s lots of different ways to get involved in storylines. It’s easier for the pro-active player but not impossible for anyone. One way to begin is by paying attention to the boards, not just the ‘general gossip board but the politics board and those for different provinces (Give yourself some Status in these areas to make sure you have access) Often there will be hints by staff or by other players running storyline that show up there. There are lots of different kinds of storylines and sometimes there will be many of one (say, political maneuvers) and a dry area in another spot (not much happening for the occult people, or for a particular secret society). If what you want to engage in doesn’t seem to be there for you, then start something! We are highly interested in players running PrPs and welcome all to do so.
If there IS a larger scale storyline that you are having trouble getting access to, if your investigation +jobs are getting you nowhere and you can’t seem to figure out what to do next...ask! Staff want people to have fun and be involved in what they want to be involved in, so a simple @mail Asherat(Yeshua, Skaldia, Kushiel etc) with ‘Hey I am really interested in this current storyline about the ghost jewel thieves but I can’t seem to catch a hook, can you help me out?’ Unless there is a serious reason not to oblige, we will help you out!
Q: What are the staff here like? (I've heard things...)
A; For about four years and change KD was run by a two staff team, myself (Asherat) and Skaldia (our headwiz). The game was small enough that two people could easily handle the demand, and keeping it streamlined assured that we were always on the same page aiming towards the same thing. Early in 2016 a surge of very enthusiastic and active new players made the staff team of two much more challenging. Now our staff is a team of 4-5 people given the day and the staffers commitments elsewhere.
Different members of our staff have different communication styles. I tend to be perky and chattery and most of the time pretty patient (unless I’m super stressed out from life and would do better off the game for a bit). Other staff members are more blunt and to the point, they’ll answer a question directly and it can appear that they are being ‘short’ or are annoyed with the player that asked, when really its a function of just trying to address things efficiently.
In general however, the KD staff are pretty laid back. There is not a lot of lecturing or punishing, and our players don’t routinely get disciplined or banned. Rules violations are more likely to get a reminder unless the rule violated is something that is damaging or harmful to another player (harassment, etc). We do have high expectations for courtesy during interactions, but know that our players do as well, so it’s tit for tat.
Q: What should I do if I have a complaint...about a storyline or scene, about game mechanics in general, or about a fellow player?
A: You should not delay in making staff aware of the issue with as much detail as possible. Remember that we are not in the business of punishing players much, so you do not need to be afraid that fellow players will suffer some dire consequence and hate you for being a tattletale (unless they did something awful in which case they might deserve it). We are happy to help mediate issues when it is possible. If the problem you have is with the way a staffer themselves handled a storyline or scene, you can bring that to us too. We understand that we are not perfect and not everyone will love the way we do every thing. That does not mean we offer up a guarantee that we will fix any complaint you have to your exact satisfaction, we have to consider lots of factors. But we want to know what is frustrating you so we can try.
Venting is super common, its a normal way that people get things off of their chest and sometimes provides a nice healthy dopamine burst as we bond with someone who shares our similar opinion. Be careful though when venting turns to gossip, or gets to a place where it can be hurtful to people. We’re not here to police how players communicate with one another, but we will try to protect our staff and our players from rumor mongering. We want the community to feel safe and fun and drama free for everyone.
Q: What behaviors will lead to difficulties with other players and staff? What should I avoid in order to enjoy my experience here?
A: First off, make sure you are familiar with the rules (link). It is expected that all of our players will follow them for the good of the group. Next you want to become familiar with general MUX Etiquette (link here). These are norms that most of our players expect and understanding them will lead to a better experience overall. That said, there’s a couple additions that I think will help anyone enjoy KD more.
Be careful with gossiping about players, staff, etc. I can’t even count how many times something nasty that was said about me or another staff member or about a player that was offered up as “Susie told me Leslie said XYZ about Staff Member Bob and player Angela...Leslie made her promise not to tell anyone but she just felt like people should know. It’s just too likely that the person you are speaking ill of will hear about it, and it isn’t going to be fun for you or for them. Be cool, be kind, treat people the way you’d like them to treat you and if you have an issue try to address it in a functional way.
Ask for what you need. Whether it is some guidance with the theme for a character’s background, or advice about how to handle a sticky IC situation, or support in handling an uncomfortable ooc one...ask. We are all here working towards the same ends, playing on a text-based fantasy game that lets us escape the dramas and burdens of everyday life. None of us want the fantasy to be filled with even more drama and burden, so work together with staff and your fellow players to keep it from being that.
Q: Hey whatever happened to that whole thing where former players were showing up on other games and pretending to be other KD players, using snip and paste of the backgrounds of players here without their permission and spreading crazy stories around? How do you guys handle that sort of thing?
A: Asherat did not appreciate having a stranger copy her information in order to convince people OOC that the stranger was Ash herself, it was creepy and weird. That said, it was the impersonation that was the super creepy part, the cut-and-paste backgrounds and descriptions were just aiding in the impersonation effort. In general, the staff on KD are not terribly territorial. We know that there is a growing interest in playing in this setting in a different way than KD offers up, and willingly share what we are able to so that people can make that happen. Anyone interested in potentially using some of the thematic information written on the wiki, or bits and pieces of system code, is completely welcome to do so. Just please be courteous and ask us first, the staff are more than willing to contribute what we've created to other game designers, but are less comfortable making that call for sections of the game itself or the wiki page that we don't consider 'our' creations but joint efforts with people who are no longer around to offer their permission for use of their work. In general, we are happy to share the love with anyone setting up something new in the Kushiel's Legacy setting. Simply hit up @Asherat or @Skaldia regarding what you are interested in using and we'll do what we can to assist you. Thanks!