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Role-Play Award: February 2008

Piper Tippet

How long have you been Roleplaying?
Well, I stumbled on to AOL back in 1996. It wasn't until I actually got bold enough to venture out away from that front opening page in January of 1997 that I actually found RDI and the Medieval Tavern. Wow. Ten years this month. Go figure!

But, I don't think you would actually call it roleplaying. Not what I was doing, anyway. Thinking back on it now, I can still feel my cheeks flush red. I was the true definition of a newbie. I talked out of character, called other characters by the wrong character names, and didn't have a clue what the acronyms stood for. (All those applications for guilds: Define SM, DM, Define Honor, What does loyalty mean to you? Sign your life away on the dotted line and forever are you a member of the Order of the Crimson Star, DoG, etc.) And don't even get me started on the dice aspect of the game. Talk about a cluster fluck. Though they do come in handy for a game of Strip poker!!

I had never played the tabletop games, so I was truly lost. Some kind soul yanked me aside in IM's and gave me the low down on the dos and don't. I am sure he was having a good laugh at my expense, but we remain good friends to this day and still play occasionally on AOL when he isn't off fighting the real bad guys.

Honestly, I am still learning. I don't think I will ever know everything. But I watch others. A lot. And I learn from their play. Both the do's and the do not do that ever again!

Tell us about your character
Piper comes to Rhydin from Warpara, New Zealand, by way of her father who was a cartographer. When he went home, she stayed and set up shop. (After one minor set back when she accidentally burned her home down.) She has seven siblings, all girls. They drove their parents crazy. She has no tragic stories, no torrid past, no dead or undead husbands. No children searching for her high and low to collect back pay. She is circa 1800's, so some things still boggle the mind for her.

Piper is an enigma, even to me to this day. I had no clear course designed for her when I started out. I just had a name. After that, I sat back for days trying to figure out what exactly I was going to do with her now that I had her. This is where my sister comes in.

My sister is the true artist. She throws pots for a living. So, I stole her mind. J Actually, I went to her studio after work everyday for a few weeks and just watched her and leeched from her brain anything and everything she could teach me. I still have to call her occasionally. She's my hero.

After that, it was just a matter of getting Piper fleshed out and into some trouble and out again before I finally got a feel for her. After that, I just let her go. She can be a true pain in the buttocks at times, but I am starting to like her more and more everyday.

What inspires you?
People. And the people that really inspire me are those who are open and friendly and willing to teach and extend their time and knowledge to others. Without them, I'd still be back on AOL, pouring over the opening page and reading the days events about Britney and Lindsey Lohan. How sad is that?

But, I think the one thing that inspires me most, is the ability to laugh and have fun with others. If I find myself unable to type because I am laughing too hard about a scene, that makes me want to come back over and over again. It's addictive. Of course, there have been those few times when a scene just had me crying as I typed. I know. Lame! But it has happened.

Above all, I have been blessed with being able to play with some awesome characters since I arrived. And those are the ones that truly inspire me to be better at this game, even if I don't get to do it as much as I'd like.

Any advice for newer players?
If you are unsure, ask. And Watch! It is the best way to learn, but by far not the only way.

I know I spent days at a time just watching others play before I was ready to give it a go again. Even now, there are characters I watch. In fact, I have to just watch and not even try to play, because I am either too engrossed to type, or laughing my fool head off.

If you aren't having fun, you aren't doing it right. Backtrack, reassess and start again. But always come back!

A few words from Piper:
"A few words? I don't really talk too much," shamefaced grin slowly tugging her lips upward before she was waving it aside, "All right, all right. I know that be a fib. But mine words are usually reserved for those that throw mine perfectly nice mugs in the Inn. That's just rude and most uncomely. Mister Panther had to pay a lot of coins for mine mugs, too!"


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