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How The System Works
Topic Started: Mar 28 2010, 10:47 AM (3,043 Views)
Namira
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The process of adoption works as follows:

* The character will be named in this area as eligible.
* Handlers submit 'bids' for the character for up to a week afterwards. (Post indicating their interest)
* If there are no 'bids', the character is killed off in an inactive death.
* If there is one bid, the character goes to that handler.
* If there are multiple bids, the handler which gets the character is determined by the priority list. (more on this later)
* Exception: The staff team reserve the right to ask every person who submits a 'bid' to go through a 'screening', whereupon they must PM a member of staff a sample post with the character they are adopting.


There are a number of conditions a character must meet to be available for adoption, these are the following:

* The character has not been posted with for two weeks.
* The handler of said character has not posted in 'away' or otherwise indicated they are going to be unable to post.
* The character in question has not been significantly involved in the game (i.e. has only had one thread, didn't debut, had limited to no interaction)
* The character has not been previously adopted.
* It is not late on in the game (i.e. beyond the first couple of days)


The Priority list. Those making 'bids' for a character will be ranked in a hierarchy determined by this list.

1. Returning members who did not submit any characters for the current version and would like to participate.
2. Newbies who didn't get a chance to take part - but have at least been around for a bit, for example on the non-RPing boards or chatzy, who pass a screening test.
3. Handlers who were in the game, but all of their characters are dead.
4. Newbies who didn't get a chance to take part but are brand spanking new and pass a screening test.
5. Handlers who are currently in the game, with one character.
6. * " " with two characters.
7. * " " with three characters.
8. Previously inactivity warned handlers, with no characters.

Note that having ALWAYS had three characters is considered higher priority than somebody who previously had four and has subsequently had one die.


There are certain circumstances under which handlers will be ineligible for adopting, these are as follows:

* If they have had a character go inactive in the current version.
* If they have ever had a character be put up for adoption.
* If they have adopted a character in the version already.
* If they have adopted a character in the past and treated them badly (using them as fodder, not attempting to play them properly, etc).


Exceptions
* If a handler wishes to pass a character to their friend, this will be allowed in any circumstances other than if it would take the beneficiary over their personal character limit. They will NOT be prevented for this type of adoption if they have adopted previously. However, if they have adopted through this method, they are NOT allowed to then proceed to adopt another character through the system.
* If a pregame character is 'donated' before the beginning of the actual game, this neither disqualifies the giver from adopting, or prevents the recipient using the system, as it has taken place before the game was in progress.
* Similarly, 'donations' of characters do not disqualify the givers from adopting through the system, as this indicates that they are responsible enough to ensure their characters are not merely going inactive.
* If a handler has previously been inactivity warned in a version, but had only that singular lapse and now has no characters remaining, they will be considered eligible to submit bids, albeit at lowest priority.
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MurderWeasel
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Alright guys. I'm making a clarification here, that will serve as policy unless an Admin or Senior Mod overrules it.

You are allowed four characters at a time. If one of yours dies, you may replace it through adoption. Note that, by the adoption rules, you may only adopt one character per version.

The reason we capped registrations and banned submitting to replace was that we were still getting new people and submissions from folks with one or two characters, so killing characters and then replacing them was burning through slots that, by rights, should have gone to those who hadn't already had a shot. With adoptions, that's not the case; these are already approved characters, and those who have less characters get priority, so the only way someone with three characters gets to adopt is if nobody with less wants one. This actually saves characters and saves the staff the trouble of inactive killing.

Make sense?

Feel free to bug me with any questions.

Cheers!
V7:
Juliette Sargent
Alton Gerow
Lavender Ripley
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Namira
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Take note of a small change regarding adoption eligibility.
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MurderWeasel
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The following serves as an addendum to and modification of the adoption rules premiered in V4. These rules supersede the old rules in any cases of conflict. The rationale for the changes will be given, so as to give insight into the thought process of the staff.

First off, we are adjusting the adoption eligibility process. Previously, handlers who had a character killed or given up due to terminal inactivity were permanently disallowed from adopting characters through the official system. The staff found this to be needlessly harsh, and have amended it.

From now on, a handler who loses a character to terminal inactivity will be disallowed from adopting only in the next numerical version. In other words, rather than being permanently barred from adopting, anyone who lost a character to inactivity in V4 is merely barred from adopting through the official system in V5. More than that, this restriction does not apply if a handler has no remaining characters. At that point, they become eligible in the same fashion as a handler who has received a warning during the version and then run out of characters.

Starting in V5, threads in the adoption section may only be started by staffers. All adoptions in the section will be handled through the official system. This is to prevent a practice common in V4: the total circumvention of the adoption limits by handlers handing off characters to anyone, regardless of eligibility. You may still give your characters to whoever you want, but arrangements should be handled through chat and PMs. If you wish to officially list characters for adoption by anyone, that should be done through discussion with the staff, who will start a thread which will follow the typical adoption guidelines.

Inactives will be offered for adoption only for the first third of the game. Some inactives may not be placed for adoption and may instead be killed, at the sole discretion of the staff. No character who has been in over four threads will be given up for adoption due to inactivity.

Newly adopted characters will be ineligible to be Swapped or Heroed out for the space of three rolls, regardless of whether they are adopted through the official system or are handed off by another handler, and regardless of whether that handler gives permission. This is to prevent handlers from adopting characters solely to bolster their original characters' chances of surviving. You may still Swap or Hero to save newly adopted characters. After three rolls, adopted characters will be treated as any other characters, and may be Swapped or Heroed normally. Note that this rule applies even if you adopt back a character you originally created and handled.

Finally, and most dramatically, there is a major change to how adopted characters interact with rolls.

Any character adopted after the 33% mark, or any character adopted by a handler who has already adopted a character during the version, will not be considered as belonging to their new handler for the purposes of protection against double rolls. These characters will be considered unattached, and may be rolled regardless of whether one of their handler's other characters is rolled in a given month.

This change represents a serious shift in the SOTF paradigm, which has until now not allowed a handler to lose multiple characters in a roll before the pre-Endgame rolls. We have decided on this change to mitigate the severe mathematical advantage having extra characters has provided to handlers in past versions. In effect, adopted characters beyond the first and/or after the 33% dead mark will not provide any sort of roll buffer to a handler's other characters. This change has been made to allow handlers to pass off their characters to whoever they want without punishing those who do not adopt. We believe that it goes a good way towards leveling out several of the less-than-fair eccentricities of the V4 rules.

We understand that this may prove inconvenient if a handler has to write multiple deaths during one roll period, and we encourage all handlers adopting characters affected by this rule to be cognizant of the possibility and ensure that they are able to handle that potential outcome before finalizing the adoption.

Also, note that if handlers pass their characters around a lot, this may end up with them all being eligible for simultaneous rolls even if they eventually revert to their original handler. We urge handlers to be aware of this fact when deciding whether or not they will pass their characters off.
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Juliette Sargent
Alton Gerow
Lavender Ripley
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MurderWeasel
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Hey, everyone! A few points of clarification due to some recent confusion on the adoption process.

First off, the staff would like to note that staff are handling only official adoptions. If you want an official adoption of your characters to take place, you need to do that through the staff. This is for situations where you are leaving the site, or don't care who gets your characters, or something of that sort. Official adoptions are the only things which may be posted in the adoption forum.

Unofficial handoffs are, as always, allowed. They simply may no longer be posted to the official adoption forum. You are still allowed to set them up through PMs, through chat, through the RP Discussion forum, etc. They are just disallowed in one specific forum. This is because official adoptions function differently within the inactivity system, and are tracked differently by the staff. This is really a very minor change that only truly affects bookkeeping.

As noted elsewhere, if you hand a character off, you should send a PM to the staff about it. Ideally, I'd prefer you send the PM to me, as I will likely be the one maintaining the activity list again for V5.

Next up, the rolls: The staff would like to remind handlers that this only applies to characters adopted after the first third of the game and/or after a handler's first adoption. Both of these instances may only occur through unofficial handoffs or due to a handler willingly posting a character for adoption through the official system after the first third of the game (as at that point inactives are killed rather than placed for adoption). The rule affects a very small portion of adoptions and handlers. It exists to level the playing field between handlers who choose to adopt and those who do not, by removing the benefit of late-game or repeat adoptions.

The purpose of adoptions has always been, first and foremost, to allow newbies to join the game after the cap has been reached and to allow handlers who have been rolled out early to remain in play. In either of these situations, having an adopted character be listed separately from a handler's other characters will present no disadvantage, as the handler will have no other characters. In effect, that sort of adoption will have zero mathematical impact on a handler's chances.

The other reason for adoptions actually applies more to hand-offs. That is to allow characters' stories to continue, to spare them inactive killing or to allow plans to continue. Recognizing the importance of these things, the staff allows exceptions to the one-adoption cap, but also does not wish to make taking characters an effective ploy for providing a buffer for a flagship character or something of the sort. The purpose of these hand-offs is to continue a character's story, which can be done, but by leaving them as separate for the purposes of rolls, the staff ensures that no undo advantage is gained through this allowance.

Finally, much has been said about the rule barring handlers who go terminal from adopting through the official system in the next version. Though a harsher variant of this rule has been publicly posted for two years, the staff realizes that it may have escaped the notice of many handlers. Taking this into account, we will not be changing the rule, but we will declare a general amnesty for terminal activity over the course of V4. In short, the V4 record has been wiped clean. Everyone can adopt.

That said, if you go terminal in V5, you cannot officially adopt in V6. Let this warning be very public and very clear, and provide an incentive to not go inactive.

Thank you for your attention.
-The SOTF Staff
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Juliette Sargent
Alton Gerow
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MurderWeasel
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MurderWeasel
Sep 21 2012, 10:16 PM
As noted elsewhere, if you hand a character off, you should send a PM to the staff about it. Ideally, I'd prefer you send the PM to me, as I will likely be the one maintaining the activity list again for V5.
I am no longer the proper recipient for these PMs! From my totally unofficial standpoint, I recommend just picking an active staffer but not sending stuff to Help as that gets checked less often and hand-offs are of course somewhat time sensitive.
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Juliette Sargent
Alton Gerow
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