Storyboard Missions Criteria

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May 28, 2014
Trait Points
Ninja World Storyboard Mission Criteria
The One Year Anniversary Revival

Foreword: Storyboard Missions are such an important part of the Ninja World experience and one's own experience in the roleplay. Missions today have existed for nearly one year, since the Ninja World's Warring States release on April 21st, 2018. Since then, hundreds of missions have been submitted, with many passed and some failed. In order to help people create and submit missions, we have helped create a set of criteria that we look for in each mission rank, as well as an explanation of many aspects of the storyboard to help completely unfamiliar individuals get into the system and participate. Huge credit to Howard for creating the basis for this guide, as well as the many other people who have put tons of work into missions before the creation of this guide. With Arc 8 and Tobusekai on the horizon, there is no better time than the present to start clarifying rules and explaining missions. This guide assumes you have basic knowledge of the Storyboard. If you do not you should take a look at The Storyboard itself before diving into this thread. And so, without wasting any more of your time, let's get into the guide.

Archetypes of Missions: Storyboard Missions come in four major variations: those with single elements and those with multiple elements, Group Missions and Village Missions. A story element, in the context of the roleplay, is a guiding aspect of your story. For example, if you choose the element explore a landmark (D-Rank), then at some point in your mission you should have explored a landmark and used the details of that exploration as part of your story. There are certain key differences, which confer their own benefits and drawbacks, on the author's story depending on if one chooses to write a mission using a single element or multiple. Additionally, group missions are tasks or objectives handled in a group-based setting and Village Missions are Storyboard Missions given directly by the ruling power of a village to their subordinates or their villagers.

Single Element Missions: Choosing to use a single element requires that seventy-five percent of the mission and the narrative of the story be directly placed upon that element. This means that most, if not all of your mission will need to be about how you complete the element and achieve your ultimate goal. Think of your element as a guidepost, a set in stone goal you need to reach to the highest degree to pass your mission. This process can include what your character does, how it does it, why it does those specific things at that moment when it does them, and the overarching narrative it creates by doing it. It doesn't include things like a climate, the weather, or setup/outro roleplay that doesn't build toward the completion of the storyboard element. There is little room for off-topic work in single element missions. This means that writing more does not mean you're writing things that matter or count toward the mission. You can write a very long mission but if 50% of the mission is off topic toward the guiding element then it won't count toward passing the mission, leading to failure.

Using the above example of exploring a landmark (D-Rank). In the case an author wishes to use this element as their exclusive element, making this a single element story mission, then nearly the entirety of their mission should be dedicated toward exploring a landmark. This means that the details of this exploration should be fairly extensive. Saying that you explore an open field, examine the blades of grass, and look toward the horizon does not fulfill the necessary level of detail needed to adequately explore a landmark in the case of a single element mission. While no specific word count is required in mission submissions, a single element mission should use at least 75% of the mission's text in order to do exactly that: explore the landmark. Even in landmarks that are simple open fields, you can create your own detail in that location as long as it does not contradict what is in that landmark. For instance, you are in an open field and you choose to explore. To the east of you, there is a village. You can travel there, explore the village, go into the tavern, look through the shops, and talk to residents. The village does not explicitly exist in that landmark's description, but by adding it to it you do not contradict the overall Ninja World story.

Multiple Element Missions: There is no formal limit to how many story elements that you can pack into a single mission, but it is recommended you pick between 2 to 3 diverse elements. Having more than a single element allows you to build outward and focus on different aspects of your roleplay and narrative. You are able to jump from one aspect to another while building a more comprehensive story arc, opening up more opportunities for slightly off-topic scenarios than a single element mission. Work doesn't need to be split in half, or in thirds, depending on the number of elements chosen; but each element needs to be performed, worked on, and completed in its own viewable way having a definitive place in the story. Doubling up in similar elements doesn't mean you have this artistic freedom. For instance, if you pick the elements build a camp and build a secure camp unless you separate these two elements into clearly defined aspects of the story, then it would ultimately count toward the same and likely result in a mission that doesn't have sufficient detail.

Using the earlier example, you create a story mission using the elements explore a landmark, run an errand, and finish a chore using Ninjutsu. Your original mission in your open field landmark, which was supposed to simply explore the landmark, has now diversified. The result is that your mission has actually become easier to complete because each individual story element, while it aggregates into the same amount of detail as the single element mission from before, requires less detail. Rather than explaining every detail of the village, like its stores, taverns, etc, one could simply talk about the village in more general terms. Then they could run an errand for a villager, explaining that process, and complete a chore using their Ninjutsu. More elements means less detail per element, and for some authors, this makes the mission easier to actually accomplish.

Group Missions: For group missions, the objective is usually the same, you still need to use the same amount of detail and effort you would use for a normal Single or a normal Multiple Element Mission but you have the luxury of working with someone else. This gives authors the chance to bounce back and forth, give part of the story and take another part of the story building something cohesive and less structured with their friends, clanmates, village mates, or even their enemies. The work isn't split between the two, so both must do their part to the fullest capacity, meaning a group mission could, in fact, fail when one player commits completely and totally if the second or third participants give up halfway, stop being active and productive or just give less than what is required.

Not all roleplay done with other members must be submitted as group missions, this decision rests squarely on the shoulders of the roleplayers. Consent and agreeance must be reached by both parties. You are completely able to do things together while creating your own solo, Single or Multiple Element Missions, the choice is ultimately up to you and the other participants. So be careful, if you work with individuals who do not live up to their end of the bargain, just like group projects in school, or college you can fail even if you did everything you needed to and correctly.

Village Missions: These types of missions are special tasks given only to those individuals who find themselves inside of a village. They are written by the council, the officials, or the Kage themselves and given to their villagers. The summary of the Village Mission should give the roleplayer completing it a total, and comprehensive guide with what they must do, how they must do it and what they will be paid if they are able to pass their Village Mission. These are to be more fleshed out than basic Storyboard Elements and extremely user-friendly.

The whole responsibility of creating the scenario rests directly upon the Kage or their council, the only thing the roleplayer should be expected to handle is the roleplay their character performs as a reaction to the tasks, and scenario set before them. They are a guided method of Storyboard Mission, with a much more "hands-on" approach from the Villages. Village Missions are special because Colonial Income can be used to bolster their payout up to an amount of a 20% bonus. This is extra paid via Village Kumi on to whatever the member gets from passing their mission. A village mission should be structured similarly to the following.
Golden Sabbath: War Were Declared
Description: You are tasked with occupying a landmark in Shimogakure. This can be done with your main biography or a clone as a representative. You are tasked with either destroying and causing problems in Shimogakure or convincing those in the LM to switch sides or leave the village. You do not have to minimize casualties though if you wish to completely eradicate a land you may do that.


Golden Sabbath: War Were Declared
Player's Involved: Vegeta
Description: You are tasked with occupying a landmark in Shimogakure. This can be done with your main biography or a clone as a representative. You are tasked with either destroying and causing problems in Shimogakure or convincing those in the LM to switch sides or leave the village. You do not have to minimize casualties though if you wish to completely eradicate a land you may do that.
Either of the above examples are valid. Posting Village Missions as long as Howard is the Head of the NW needs to be done in the Storyboard Mission Submission Thread. These submissions should be formatted as followed with the Village Mission name cited as the "Storyboard Element" and the entire Village Mission quoted in the "Additional Information" tab.
Players involved: Vegeta
Story elements chosen: Golden Sabbath: War Were Declared
Date of beginning & date of conclusion: 02/16/2020
Relevant mission links:
Additional information:
Golden Sabbath: War Were Declared
Rank: S
Description: You are tasked with occupying a landmark in Shimogakure. This can be done with your main biography or a clone as a representative. You are tasked with either destroying and causing problems in Shimogakure or convincing those in the LM to switch sides or leave the village. You do not have to minimize casualties though if you wish to completely eradicate a land you may do that.
Mission Ranks: The calculated rank of the mission is what decides how difficult the mission will ultimately be and how closely it will be graded. As you progress through the ranks and reach closer to an S-Rank mission difficulty, you will find yourself forced into greater descriptive writing. This is because, naturally, as missions increase in length they will get longer. This is most noticeable when you reach an S-Rank mission; these can be hard to pass even for experienced roleplayers due to the level of detail they require.

Important Tip: Story missions are as the name suggests: they are stories. When writing a story you should try to follow the guidelines established by the five story elements: character, setting, plot, conflict, and resolution. These five elements become more defined as the story difficulty increases in rank. Your stories will, usually, include characters. These characters may be limited to only your own in the case of exploration or meditation missions. They will take place in a setting; this setting is the landmark and usually does not require significant description. However, should the mission take place in a building inside that landmark, for example, then you should describe that building to establish a setting. Plot, conflict, and resolution all refer to the story arc progression of your mission. Every mission, no matter how simple, has some kind of conflict. This conflict, by the end of the mission, should see some form of resolution.

D-Rank: The easiest missions to pass and usually only require a fraction of the work put into a higher ranked mission. The established story elements on the Storyboard Elements list shows the types of tasks that qualify as a D-Rank mission. These are minor tasks like meditating, exploration, trivial errands, and training. These are tasks that have been seen done by Genin Ninja in the Naruto series, like finding a lost cat or helping a child. It is very difficult to fail a D-Rank mission as long as minimal work and effort is put into it. In the case of D-Rank missions, the usual suspect for failure is that most of the mission was dedicated toward information outside of the element(s) themselves that encompassed it.

C-Rank: Elements that have increased in difficulty from the D-Rank. For example, defend yourself from wild beasts or capture an exotic or rare animal. C-Rank missions take more effort than a D-Rank mission but are still very easy to pass. C-Rank missions, unlike the D-Rank, usually begin to have some elements of danger included in the narrative.

B-Rank: The middle of the road mission in terms of difficulty. B-Rank missions typically hold elements of danger, and require better descriptive writing and allocation of details per element than C-Rank missions. These are not necessarily life-threatening missions, but they shouldn't be simple tasks either. For example, if you use a custom story element to defeat a group of ninja, then you should go into detail on how you defeat those ninja and the process of the fight. The fight itself could be a breeze for your biography, and you can use this time to show off your biography's skills if you so wish. But the fight itself is central to the story and should be treated as such. The buildup to this point should only be used to establish the setting of your story.

A-Rank: These missions are considered to be within the high tier of mission difficulty and represent a level of difficulty to your biography that cannot be easily resolved. For example, the story element fight an enemy stronger than yourself (A-Rank) has significant aspects of danger within it. You place your biography in some tangible danger that is actually difficult for your biography to resolve easily. This aspect of resolution, part of the plot and conflict, should come with some form of climax within the mission itself. A-Rank missions are essentially standard short stories; your character(s) will face against some adversity and be forced to find a resolution. Seeking out that resolution, be it defeating an enemy or peace negotiations, should be difficult. Important to note is that difficulty and conflict is not necessarily violence. You do not have to fight in these missions. At times this can represent diplomatic negotiations, where tensions rise and words are used to come to some sort of resolution after a heated debate.

S-Rank: This is the highest tier of mission and represent, typically, life-threatening and dangerous objectives that are supposed to be extremely rare and difficult events. For example, win a fight without your ninjutsu or save a large community from danger show this mentality. Not only do you need to focus heavily on your objectives, but you also need to make sure your biography is placed in some form of conflict where the odds are quite obviously stacked against you. In the case of winning a fight without the use of ninjutsu; this mission element represents a significant difficulty for many as we are in a roleplay where nearly every fight is described using ninjutsu. In this case, descriptive details of nearly an entire fight must be dedicated to that fight and how your biography wins it without using a single ninjutsu. In the case of saving a large community from danger; this mission element represents a large community that is placed in mortal danger and that you must save them. An impending army collapsing on a village could suit this mission element, for example. In this case hundreds of ninja would outnumber your biography and you would need to struggle to cut through them to protect the village. It is very easy to fail an S-Rank mission; typically failures stem from lack of effort in the struggle itself, or that no threat was faced by your biography. For example, if you face this army in the earlier example and easily cut through them with a series of techniques then that would be more akin to a B or maybe A-Rank mission. But in the case of an S-Rank mission, your character(s) should struggle against the onslaught of your enemies.

Tips for Passing Missions:

Focus on each story element. Story elements should be treated akin to a checklist. As you write your story you should be mentally checking off as you complete each story element with satisfactory detail. This requirement increases as you increase the overall difficulty of the mission.

Don't worry about a word count. Missions that are longer are not necessarily predetermined to pass. The level of detail and how it increases with higher-ranked missions will naturally increase the word count; this means that an S-Rank mission will not typically be shorter than an A-Rank mission. But there is no concrete word count for missions, and this is not looked at when we grade them.

Don't get sidetracked. One of the biggest culprits in failing missions is that the author was sidetracked or distracted by establishing setting or off-topic roleplay. For example, if you spend 80% of your mission writing about the appearance of the field you're going to meditate in, and 20% of your mission actually meditating, then you are going to fail. The correct way to do this would be to use 25% of your story to establish the setting. The remainder should be dedicated to conflict, plot, and resolution. While a mission that is meditative is not necessarily laden with conflict, you should go into detail about what your character is meditating on, why it is important, and how it influences them. These auxiliary details provide the descriptive support needed to pass your mission.

Use detail. This sounds simple, but it is where almost all missions fail. If a D-Rank mission involves killing someone, then it can be passed by simply saying your biography kills them. But that is a low level of detail that is reflected by that simple mission. In the case of a B, A, or even S-Rank mission, then the level of detail naturally will increase to the point where "I kill X character" is no longer sufficient. This should then transform into "I kill X character by cutting his throat" or "I strangle him." This explains the means by which your character accomplishes this goal in order to move toward the resolution of the mission.

Use of Non-Player Characters: An NPC can perform certain tasks within the mission that can play a role in how you complete your mission. But ultimately a mission should be about what your biography does and how it completes the mission itself. Examples of NPCs being used in missions are enemies, allies, villagers, etc. In the case of allies, these NPCs can fight alongside your biography but cannot shoulder the entire workload. For example, if your mission is to defeat an enemy much stronger than you are, then your biography needs to shoulder that burden, not an NPC you create. Summoning Animals, Creation of All Things, Puppets, or Edo Tensei excluding Paths directly and completely controlled by the creator's biography, such as the Six Paths of Pain count as NPCs not counting toward mission completion. Shadow Clones as they are complete copies of the creator's own biography do count toward missions, can be used to perform missions on their own, but cannot claim bounties without their creator taking place in the bounty itself.
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