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Multiple Caste Characters {a guide to successful applications}

xx Multiple Caste Characters {a guide to successful applications}
Aug 24, 12, 03:27:33 PM by Jamie

One of the toughest type of applications to pass through the Review Council are those what incorporate multiple castes into a single character.

Dual Caste Females

Dual caste females ought to have a level of complexity that supports their status and castes. The bar on these applications has been set high and the expectations are that the character and application should clearly represent the two castes throughout the application and concept.

Elements of a Successful Dual Caste Female Petition:
  • The blending of the 2 castes should be unique and impactful to the character.
  • The entire application should support the need and existence of the two castes.
  • Clear indication, in the application, if the castes are natural or trained.
  • The minimum won’t cut it; we expect these applications to be of a higher quality and caliber so trying to scrape by with the minimum amount of words or elements will not get your character accepted.
Leveraging the Application to Make your Case...
One element that we look for in each multiple caste application is to see if all castes are represented throughout the application. Many times the writer focuses too heavily on the Personality as the best way to showcase the castes; but this leaves the rest of the application without the necessary caste elements.
  • Personality: Each caste in the realm of the Blood has certain personality traits associated with it or that are natural to the caste. It is key to identify how those traits shape the character, even if they do not possess them, and how they blend with other personality traits to make the character unique. The Personality section is one of the strongest sections in which to showcase the castes.
  • Likes/Dislikes/Fears: These sections should always enhance the character and provide further depth to the character. Reflecting the castes in this section is key to providing further insight into the impact of the castes upon the character and application; be careful not to overwhelm this section and focus too heavily on the castes. They should be reflected but not dominant.
  • History: Often times we see applications where the strength of the castes is reflected heavily within the personality and throughout the other elements of the application but it is missing very the very key element that defines the character; their History. Given the impact of multiple castes in this alternate universe of the Realms of the Blood it is key to include a strong reference to the multiple castes and how they’ve impacted the character’s life and growth.
  • Sample: The sample can often be overlooked when it comes to these applications but by showcasing the impact of the multiple castes in this setting it can give the Review Council insight into the impact of the castes outside of the application.
Dual Caste Males & Triple Caste Females

The application process for dual caste males and triple caste females is explicitly difficult and involves elevated expectations of the characters. Because of the requirements and restrictions around the application the HBC and Review Council are extraordinarily hard on these reviews and they are subject to difficulty high standards.

The restrictions around these petitions include:
  • Writer must have 4 characters with 10 posts a piece.
  • Active community member for no less than 2 months.
  • Requires 2 HBC Approvals.

It should be noted that in game Dual Caste males are far more common than a Triple Caste female due to Territory requirements and the availability of training in several of the Territories.

Elements of a Successful Dual Caste Male or Triple Caste Female Application:
  • All of the elements from a Dual Caste Female.. plus more.
  • These characters should have significant plot concepts already planned. This means we are looking to see what large plot opportunities they will be involved with outside of their own personal plots and personal character development.
  • The characters should also have signfificant plot influence; the ability to create plots, connect plots and drive plots.
  • The petition is absolutely key to the success of the application! This is a chance for you to explain the impacts and importance of the castes outside of the application and with an out of character understanding. A poorly presented petition will have heavy impact on the review process.
Advice from Review Council & HBC

Given the level of difficulty with these applications I asked several questions of the Review Council (and HBC) on advice they would give to players who are looking to complete a multiple caste character for application.

Below are the questions that were asked to the Council members; and their responses. Some even included examples of their own application work and what they did to incorporate the castes. I’m hoping that this really detailed feedback will help inspire the next generation of fantastically blended multiple caste characters.

What do you look for in the application that is definitive of a multi caste character?
Clear indication of both castes on their own as well as a unique melding of the castes together. Really there needs to essentially be three castes present, caste A, caste B, and caste AB (or A, B, C, and ABC for triple). I want to see the way this affects them in their daily lives and in their upbringing, as well as their Craft. If the second caste is trained, how did the addition of the new caste alter or affect their personality? Has that stabilized out or are the changes ongoing?
The biggest things I look for is that the character supports the caste. Many times we see multiple caste applications with a pure lack of ambition. The plot and history of the character should also support the caste. It should be well rounded and encompassed through every element of the application.

What advice do you give to players who are taking on a multi caste character?
Things to consider:
Where do the castes merge together in harmony? Where do they sharply contrast?
How do they make your character stronger at either or both of their castes? How
do they weaken your character at either of both of their castes? If you are
thinking that having multiple castes means they are now MORE AWESOME at
everything, try again. We need to see flaws to balance those strengths.
Vet your idea with another seasoned player. If you want to write a Healer who learned to be a Black Widow because her mother forced her... that may be a little weak.
Find a compelling story for ANY dual caste is defined by their castes. They won't be carpenters, painters, or weavers, they will be the embodiment of their castes. By the very nature of being dual casted you will be focused upon, not forgotten and overall, wildly important no matter your Jewels. You are blessed by the very duality you hold, even more so for triple castes. Don't underplay it! Unless you’re hiding it, then play up HOW AND WHY its hidden.

What are the most frequent mistakes you see in multi caste applications?
Too much emphasis on one caste
and little to none on the other. Reading all one caste. Too many ways in which
the character is now REALLY amazing but not enough ways in which carrying the
weight of the extra castes also hampers them. There is a price that comes with
the extra castes. I want to see what it is.
A conceptual character that has no tie ins with existing plot. A multiple caste character carries weight with it and expectations that they will drive plot beyond their own bubble. These characters should be significant contributors to plots and driving activity in a Territory.
General advice from an HBC & Review Councilor
First, make sure you really want to write the character with multiple castes. Do you really LOVE the concept? I have two dual caste males (one still in review but still) and both of them were concepts that I fell in love with.
>> For Dayaal, I really wanted to do a character where there is a definitive split in the personality. I chose the two castes accordingly, but more than that I fit him into an overarching plot that would support what was going on in the Territory. I was able to show what growing into the natural caste of the healer as well as the Warlord Prince would do to a man, especially one who valued compassion over strength. And I like to think the result was pretty successful. He got passed through the review process with very relatively few edits and able to get into play pretty quickly.

>>For Aksel, I looked at the culture he was set it. His castes had already been determined by Dani in the storyline, but even so I had to fall in love with the idea before I could REALLY write him. I played around with different ideas based on Glacia's, and decided I wanted to tell the story of what happens when the caste manifests, especially for a grown male. More than that, I really liked the idea of being an example of what happens to a male when he tries to force something that is strictly forbidden in their society. Since I wanted to explore the alteration of his personality, I made him only half trained. It leaves me lots of space to RP with people that I wouldn't have otherwise. Now he fits what is necessary for the story, but also lives and breathes as a character that I want to write. It's not all about him either. His story encompasses Kaija, Markus, Yrian, Matias, Lilja, Elisif. He is a character that is now necessary for this story.
The next bit of advice I would give to someone wanting to petition a multi caste (whether it be male or female) is to write. Write a lot. You are not going to scrape by with a 250 word personality, and not putting in craft strengths and weaknesses. Go above and beyond. With history, make sure you show what these castes did to the character - especially if they are natural. For the sample choose something that REALLY draws out the castes, or shows a conflict in them. More than any other application, it is necessary to really shine in the RP sample of a dual caste.
Third - be prepared to rewrite. I have yet to see a multi-casted character simply be accepted. There is a process to this. It is one of the most difficult things to get passed through on review, especially if they hold a Dark Jewel. Not only should you write a lot, but you should be prepared to rewrite. Review council always tries to make suggestions that will help you, but there are times you just have to go back in and rework something. For Aksel, Phe had me go back in and rewrite some more Prince into his personality. She felt that the Black Widow overpowered, which while necessary in RP at times, was too much in an application. Don't get upset that review is sending you back - don't think that you're going to just slide through without a process to it. This is not a light jeweled hearth witch that we will overlook weak parts for a strong sample or history.
If you're uncertain, talk to someone who has been through the process. Each of us who has written a multi caste understands the process. We know how difficult it is, and we also know what notes that we were given. Reach out to someone who wrote one that you really like. If I absolutely adore how Yrian was written, I'm going to contact Dani and be all "Hey Dani! I am wanting to petition a dual caste male, and I love how you write Yrian. Do you think you can help me out?" And Dani will either say "Yes of course! I'd love to!" or... "I don't really have a lot of time right now because of school and work. In my free time I'd love to help you out, or you can talk to Blue. She wrote a pretty awesome dual caste male too and was there to help when I wrote Yrian!" We're a community. We are not going to leave you high and dry on this sort of petition

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