World Alliances and Rivalries

A Geopolitical Role Playing Game

Rules of WAR

General rules

  1. If you have been told by a Game Master (GM) not to do something related to the game, don't do it. If you have been told by a GM to do something related to the game, and there is no specific rule against it, do it. This is a general, catch-all rule - when it comes to situations relating to the game, the GMs have final authority. Period. If they must enforce a certain degree of method acting in a situation, there is always going to be a reason behind that, and sometimes that reason can't be immediately disclosed.
  2. Don't be a jerk. This, again, is a catch-all rule. In Character, this game can get rough and frankly even a bit brutal. Out of Character, it should not. It must not. In Character, say what you will, have your character think what they will, so be it. Out of Character, remember at all times that your fellow players, and the GMs, are as human as you are. Foul language may be used, but use it wisely. OOC taunting happens, but we know, and you know, that some forms of taunting will get you evicted from the game. Don't cross that line, it's bright and shiny and beyond it there is no coming back.
  3. Check your OOC drama with other players at the door. This game is competitive enough IC and OOC without adding more fuel to it. We know tensions will get high out of character - version 1 of WAR certainly had its moments - but the objective here is that no matter how rough it gets in game, everybody is at least civil outside of the game. If you’re having major problems with a player, bring it up to the GMs.
  4. The game's working language, in all respects, is English. We welcome those for whom English is a second, or greater, language - but we ask that all communication regarding the game be kept to English where at all possible

Research and "Showing your work"

  1. Ironclad rule: No citing sources in your posts unless you *somehow* manage to do so smoothly within the context of the post. We want to focus on writing posts, not tons of footnotes. For GM and player ease of reading, please don’t add footnotes, except for translations of non-English where needed (common phrases don't need it - common defined by an ordinary English speaker) or in very rare circumstances which have been discussed with a GM prior to posting.
  2. That said, research is good. Where you think a post might need OOC research, do the research. The GMs reserve the right to ask you to show your research off-list when the plausibility or practicality of something is at issue. Rule 4 never says don't do the research, just don't *show* the research directly. Let the fact that you did the legwork become clear through the writing. 
  3. Equality of sources: The GMs will, where they can, donate research sources for the entire game - such as subscriptions to newspaper websites. Any other player may do the same. However, the rule that must be maintained is that if it is used in WAR in any manner, it must be available (or made available) to *all* players and GMs, equally, without exception. Within that, free sources are decidedly favored over sources for which money must be paid at any point. Hardcopy books are something of an exception - Good books on our topics are hard to find, but we can't share them over the internet. Please don't use them if you can find an electronic source, even just ebook versions of the same text. Please do not use Wikileaks at all as a source, due to the possibly classified information on it.


  1. Each player plays ONE primary character, the Head of Government or Head of State of ONE country. Subordinates may be freely used as NPCs. If it isn't clear from custom or circumstance what position the Player Character would hold, the GMs decide. Spouses and family are viewed as NPCs of a different stripe.
  2. At a minimum, players are expected to post at least once every two weeks, RL time. Exceptions will be gladly given for RL issues (or to accommodate Joint Posts in progress, or so forth), but you need to advise the GMs *before* the turn report goes out. At a minimum, we need to hear something. Disappearing without a word is not particularly seen as OK if there is not a reason for it.
  3. Turn reports (otherwise known as World Reports) will ideally be published once every two weeks. They *may* be published more often at the GMs' discretion, covering shorter periods of high activity, or less often if events (RL or IC) dictate that slowing down may be a good idea. A World Report will cover from 0000 US Eastern Time (the time in New York City) on Sunday of week one to 2359 US Eastern Time on Saturday of week two (with weeks added on if we slow down), and *ideally* will be published within 48 hours of the end of the relevant two week period.
  4. Research and development: Building new technology is a fun part of WAR, and can lead to great ideas and great stories. For research, the best rule of thumb is post quality + plausibility = success, though success may take time. Don’t just list what you’re doing, but tell us how you got there; with the right post quality, many things are possible, but you need to tell us what steps are taken, how they are taken, and do OOC research if needed to figure out if it’s at all plausible.
  5. Secret actions: In running a country, sometimes you have to do secret things. To send secret actions, send your post to the list with the phrase Secret Action in front of the title, then a descriptive title, GM’s will rule and email back to let you know for success or failure, this will use the same post quality + plausibility = success.  There is a chance of a secret action getting exposed through leaks, or just bad planning (happens to all of us); However, exposure is determined by the GM’s using the same post quality + plausibility = success strategy.   Secret actions are not to be considered in-character knowledge unless decided by GM’s, who will inform you if you know of another player’s actions and what exactly you know.
  6. WAR uses two email lists, both hosted at Google Groups. WAR-IC is for In Character matters and is where most gameplay happens. WAR-OOC is for out of character matters (particularly “administrative” things such as rules changes, introducing new players, etc.). Players must be subscribed to both lists.
  7. You are expected to read every post that crosses the IC list. Skimming posts happens, but outright not reading a post is not an excuse. Pay particular attention to posts labeled with [ADMIN] in the subject line – those are GM posts where the GMs are notifying of rules changes, for instance.

Genocide rule

  1. Just to say this: Any person simulating organized genocide will be summarily banned. The GMs will decide what counts and if there is even the slightest chance for an excuse that makes it not genocide. Period.

Discord server

  1. WAR has a Discord server for chatting, OOC discussions about the game, etc. Joining it is not mandatory, but is very highly advised. Download Discord at
  2. #general is the channel for all players, GMs, prospective players, and so forth. It’s meant for general chatter. It is completely and entirely OOC. Rules 0 through 2 of this rules listing apply, however, particularly rule 1.
  3. Each player will have a channel, distinctively named, for conversations between them and the GMs. This channel is also OOC, but is kept private (and unseen by those not on the channel) to enable discussions about IC matters, particularly where the GMs or you need to “deconflict” potential plots. (IE, make sure that your proposed plot doesn’t break something, or the GMs’ proposed plot doesn’t break something.) Rules 0 through 2 apply, but with less force – for instance, if you need to vent to someone about another player, it’s OK! Just, do it on your private channel, where only the GMs and you see it.
  1. Please remember that Discord can be used both on the desktop and from mobile devices – and it makes noises on those mobile devices, too. As a result, for everybody’s sanity, try to avoid spamming the #general channel in particular.
  2. Political discussions are a natural offshoot of games like this. However, if you do discuss real world politics, please remember to be respectful of your fellow players, per rules 1 and 2. Also, please keep the memes, etc. semi work safe.

Version 2.1, September 30 2018