To avoid running over each other (and the GM) when doing IRC RPs, I propose the Ping System.
How it works
- Instead of simply speaking, one must type and enter a “*” before typing in their character’s response/action.
- If someone types a “*” before you do, you must wait for them to send their message before sending yours. You may type “*” to queue up behind them, however. A queue is built through people typing “*” once they have an idea of how their character would react (if at all significantly).
- You can, of course, type “never mind” if you’d like to cancel your queue.
- If the GM has something to say, he types a “*” himself. This overrides all other queues - they are still queued as given, but everyone, including the first person to have typed a “*”, must wait. When the GM is done sending messages, he types “***” and the first person queued may again speak.
The idea behind this system is to avoid situations where the GM starts typing a response to something he saw in-chat (or the next scene in the RP), and is constantly forced to adjust his message as other, faster-typing players repeatedly input actions and speech. It also prevents situations where players may be caught sending massages that are inappropriate given the now-changed situation. Lastly, this also makes the dialogue flow more naturally, as opposed to several instances where the entirety of the cast spends up to 30 seconds speaking amongst each other every time an NPC says something, or the party enters another room.
Edge Case Handling
- If two people send “*” in close succession to one another, they are expected to clarify who will go first beforehand (through OOC), of course. (IRC does not always transmit the same message order to each client.)