You might ﬁnd that your players don’t have much to say on the topic of objectionable content, and just assume that general societal mores will keep the most uncomfortable topics out of the game. That’s not always enough, as that approach relies on shared assumptions that aren’t always accurate. The following is a set of basic assumptions that works for many groups, which you can modify to ﬁt your preferences and those of the other players.
- Bloodshed, injuries, and even dismemberment might be described. However, excessive descriptions of gore and cruelty should be avoided.
- Romantic and sexual relationships can happen in the game, but players should avoid being overly suggestive. Sex always happens “oﬀ-screen.” Because attempts at initiating a relationship between player characters can be uncomfortably similar to one player hitting on another, this should generally be avoided (and is entirely inappropriate when playing with strangers).
- Avoid excessively gross or scatological descriptions.
The following acts should never be performed by player characters:
- Rape, nonconsensual sexual contact, or sexual threats
- Harm to children, including sexual abuse
- Owning slaves or proﬁting from the slave trade
- Reprehensible uses of mind-control magic
Villains might engage in such acts, but they won’t happen “on-screen” or won’t be described in detail. Many groups choose to not have villains engage in these activities at all, keeping these reprehensible acts out of mind entirely.