Shadow Actions & Metagaming

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Shadow Actions & Metagaming

Post by GreenKnight1294 on Sun Jul 05, 2015 5:02 am

Shadow Actions

Shadow Actions are a tool used to avoid unintentional metagaming amongst a player group. They are designed to facilitate clandestine activities that other characters would not logically be aware of in the context of a scene. A character quietly swiping a piece of loot from a room that other members of their party have not visited yet is an example of a Shadow Action.

To initiate a Shadow Action, your character must first be in a position where they cannot be observed by any other character in the immediate vicinity. You may then write down the actions your character takes in secret and then send them privately to a member of the staff, who will take them into account when determining how the situation progresses. A staff member is under no obligation to approve a Shadow Action if they judge it to be insufficiently stealthy, and may request that you edit or adjust your actions as they see fit. An element of random chance may be present in some Shadow Actions, and you may be required to pass a die roll in order to succeed at some of them. Quietly drawing a gun from a holster behind a person who is distracted is a good example of a Shadow Action that would necessitate such a roll to accomplish.


In roleplaying games, metagaming can be defined as any out of character action made by a player's character which makes use of knowledge that the character is not meant to be aware of. This should be avoided as it breaks the immersion. The following is a list of examples of what can be considered metagaming:

  • Adjusting a character's actions based on foreknowledge of the long-term intentions of the gamemaster.
  • Using knowledge from a previously played or dead character.
  • Adjusting a character's behavior towards other player characters based on real-life relationships with other players and not how compatible their personalities actually are.
  • Using knowledge of the game's mechanics to gain an advantage in the game by having a character do something incompatible with their personality without a good reason.
  • Assuming that something that appears to be wrong or unlikely in the game world is a mistake of the gamemaster rather than something that could be investigated.
  • Any action that is based upon the knowledge that one is playing a game.

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