Search: An Overview

In the World

As we see in the books, after a gold dragon has clutched her eggs the other dragons of that Weyr go out about Pern to find suitable candidates to stand at the Hatching. The dragons sense some innate potential in certain people, and they ask them to come back to the Weyr and stand.

In the Game

Unfortunately, we do not actually get psychic dragons, so we can't rely on their innate ability to detect potential. Despite that, it's still important to us that we choose candidates with good potential - not necessarily as a dragonrider, but as a roleplayer who will make the game more fun for everyone around them. To do that, we have a process with OOC and IC parts, designed to create an experience as close to the books as possible, within the limitations of our non-Pern universe.

Who is eligible?

Briefly, characters in good physical and mental health, between the ages of 12 and 25 for males, or 14 to 30 for females, who have no attachment so strong it would compete with a dragon for their attention. (That is, no married characters or masters of a craft). Characters who have committed serious crimes are also ineligible - whether it's because the dragons don't want that, or the Weyr doesn't!

The Process

  1. Players apply to have their character Searched. There is a brief on-game application available for a period before the IC search begins, with basic information about what a player is looking for from the experience of being a candidate. At this point, players are only applying to be candidates, and may apply even if they OOCly want their character to be stand-only: to be part of all the candidate roleplaying, but not be considered for a dragon. Any interested player on the game may start this process by typing SEARCH ME during the OOC Search period to be taken to the application.
  2. Search Riders go out and Search the characters. Once OOC applications are closed, over the next few days riders will find candidates who have been accepted, and Search them in public scenes.
  3. The candidacy period. Over a period of 3-4 OOC weeks, the candidates are encouraged to be active in public RP, and the SearchCo provides some additional inspiration and guidance to help them along. This is a great opportunity for character development through active RP, and for SearchCo to get a good sense of how the different characters interact with one another and the rest of the Weyr. During this period, a few other things occur:
    • Searched characters provide additional detail. All candidates are asked to fill out an additional OOC questionnaire, providing more detail on what they hope for in a dragon and in weyrlinghood, should they be selected. Members of the SearchCo may also interview candidates OOCly to go into more detail and make sure they understand.
    • Touchings of the eggs are held. A set of public scenes are held for candidates to touch some set of the eggs, and read and roleplay their responses to pre-written prompts from each egg that reveal some aspects of that egg's personality.
    • Decisions are made and dragons are written. Partway through the candidacy period, once all the characters have provided additional detail and have had some time for group roleplaying, the actual decisions of which candidates will impress, and what colors of dragons they will impress to, are secretly made by SearchCo. Then, each dragon is written by some portion of SearchCo, combining aspects from the egg with additional elements from that player's requests to create a dragon character particular to them.
  4. The Hatching. In a pre-scheduled scene, all of the candidates roleplay the experience of standing on the sands as the eggs hatch, and the new dragons find their lifemates. This is also when players find out whether their character Impressed, and dragons are revealed.
  5. Aftermath.
    • Characters who Impressed are now Weyrlings, and move on to Weyrlinghood, which is another structured period of roleplaying as their dragon grows up.
    • Characters who did not Impress remain Searched! They may try again in a future cycle at Xanadu or any other weyr, or grow in a different direction afterward.
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