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Is it time to consolidate?

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Is it time to consolidate spheres?

Yes. Let Utterby and Vadok Mal go to war to decide which sphere closes via meaningful conflict. Add new roles to the "winning" sphere to help support the type of play that the diaspora of new players will enjoy.
1
2%
Yes. Consolidate to Utterby via admin plot, turn the orcs into an NPC faction, and create criminal support in Utterby.
9
22%
Yes. Consolidate to Vadok Mal via admin plot. Turn Utterby into an NPC faction, and create a human/Easterling camp that allies with the orcs.
7
17%
No. SOI should always be two spheres in conflict with one another.
15
37%
No. Wait until Laketown to consolidate.
5
12%
No. I don't want those players in my sphere.
2
5%
I don't care. I just ignore what's going on in the rest of the gameworld and focus on my safe zone that I roleplay in.
2
5%
 
Total votes : 41

Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby bjg2k1us » Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:50 pm

You know, while the 'underappreciated/just be positive' argument doesn't always resonate (and rightly so, since it rarely addresses the actual problems being discussed), in this case Gobbo was basically saying 'Frigga doesn't do anything', and so it is very much a necessary response. In fact, there's been a few complaints that have taken that tone in the not too distant past, and I'm rather impressed at the way in which staff handles them. Calling staff lazy or useless is not going to foster any kind of decent discussion.

That said...

Frigga's suggestion to play a grey PC doesn't solve the problem, because any good sphere should have some shades of grey in it. Having one sphere that is basically restricted to all black, all the time leaves no room for grey elements, let alone grey elements that can work across sphere lines. I agree that the game would be better if and when the Utterby/Laketown side has more grey in it, but that still fails to address the underlying issues with two spheres that have no reason to interact beyond killing each other.

And I think at this point, I've beaten that horse into the ground far enough, so I'll let the battered equine rest.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby tehkory » Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:53 pm

Rishte wrote:Growth needs space. Always. To diminish is to go backwards when we want to go forward.

Posting promises and platitudes isn't engendering any faith. I've seen grand new promises of amazing new spheres that were more of the same. I had a good friend ask me to wait around 'for just one more RPT, it'll be different!'

It wasn't. Telling us to read a newsletter to be wowed by the game is...well. Why not play the game to be wowed by the game? I've read newsletters before. They're neat fluff, just air in a balloon.

I'll keep logging in, when I've the time. We'll all keep putting hours in to see that this is a better game, because it's cooperative and we work together to do that. Full-steam ahead, do what you want to do. The best MUD is one where Staff stick to their own vision of what they want religiously, and don't dilute it for people bitching. If you've got a vision, follow it. Stay the course.

But I guarantee you staying the course won't fix PvP, or a lack of inter-sphere roleplay. If your vision involves fixing that, you need to change your vision. If you don't care, then it's not a problem, and the players that want it can find another game, or make their own. But they'll also continue to point out that this is a problem(and it is), and that it's not been fixed(it hasn't), and that you're not going to see it fixed down the line as-is(you won't).

Orcs are fundamentally evil and debased to the core, both to Tolkien and all but the most liberal, uncommon interpretation of players and scholars/authors alike( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Last_Ringbearer presents a rare exception to this opinion, but is of course utterly uncanon ). Farms, fish, republics and mayors, and ANYTHING that can be contained within Laketown won't change that. You need Men of Shadow to bridge the gap between Evil and Men of Twilight.

Anyway, Gobbo's being a knob in what otherwise has been an okay thread. Don't be a knobGobbo.

ETA:
Called Laketown Utterby. Fixed that. Close enough, though.
Last edited by tehkory on Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby MrT2G » Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:55 pm

cfelch wrote:Players aren't really in a position to do more then grind or socialize.


This is incredibly wrong from my experience.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby cfelch » Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:57 pm

MrT2G wrote:
cfelch wrote:Players aren't really in a position to do more then grind or socialize.


This is incredibly wrong from my experience.


What can they do that would not also fall under one of those categories?
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Frigga » Fri Jul 17, 2015 1:02 pm

You need Men of Shadow to bridge the gap between Evil and Men of Twilight.


No one disagrees with that, okay, I don't at least. If I did we wouldn't have written in a whole area designed for those people to work and live in.

The disagreement is whether to open an area for them separate
from or instead of the "main human sphere" or instead of the Orcs.

I would also argue, and have that playing the Man of Shadow has it's greatest strength when you have Men of Twilight to play off of, the greatest RP is in the difference. So I'd love to see a good Man of Shadow, indeed, I've seen that transformation with at least one PC and loved it. I'd also love to see more "Men of Twilight" shine on the more white side of the spectrum, just more variance for flavor.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Songweaver » Fri Jul 17, 2015 1:20 pm

We're getting away from the core question of this thread a little, and I'd like to revisit it ...

Would temporarily consolidating the spheres (but still incorporating the types of role play that you can find in both spheres) accomplish the following?

- Let staff RPAs focus on telling a story for one sphere, instead of two separate stories for two separate spheres?
- Increase the likelihood of players to find other players to roleplay with, since it's being said again and again that this has become a very real problem?
- Increase the population of people playing SOI in the short-term?
- Allow for a more successful start to Laketown (due to a higher population of players) in the long-term?

Keep in mind the following.

- The status quo has led to the smallest population for SOI that it has ever seen, in its almost fifteen years of existence.
- Retired characters in the closed sphere can always return to play in Laketown, or elsewhere. No need for any of their stories to permanently end.
- SOI can always re-open a second sphere again, when it is better positioned to do so.
- Consolidating the spheres would only take a couple of days of work, tops, for the staff. We're not talking about creating a whole new sphere, or pushing back the nebulous pipeline for Laketown.
- The majority of players currently playing seem to want this, in one degree or another. Consider that an even greater majority of players who are no longer playing might be drawn back to the game because of this.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Gobbo » Fri Jul 17, 2015 1:42 pm

We got a clear answer, there wont be any chance of new spheres or consolidation.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby MrT2G » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:01 pm

Songweaver wrote:The majority of players currently playing seem to want this, in one degree or another. Consider that an even greater majority of players who are no longer playing might be drawn back to the game because of this.


According to your own poll, it is actually evenly split 13-13 at this moment.

With the single category with the most votes, being in favor of no consolidation.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby cfelch » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:06 pm

I see it as 16:11:2 in favor of [eventual] consolidation.
A 3/5 majority, more or less.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Songweaver » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:18 pm

MrT2G wrote:
Songweaver wrote:The majority of players currently playing seem to want this, in one degree or another. Consider that an even greater majority of players who are no longer playing might be drawn back to the game because of this.


According to your own poll, it is actually evenly split 13-13 at this moment.

With the single category with the most votes, being in favor of no consolidation.


Nooooot quite.

Let's consider the following.

I. Actual Vote Breakdown
- Total Votes to Consolidate: 16
PvP Determines Consolidation (1)
Consolidate to Utterby w/criminal roles (6)
Consolidate to Vadok Mal w/human camp (6)
Consolidate after Laketown opens (3)

- Total Votes to Never Consolidate: 11
SOI Should Always be Two Spheres (9)
I Don't Want THOSE Players in MY Sphere (2)

- Total Votes for Who Cares: 2


II. Did Staff Vote for No Consolidation?

I'd assume so, based on the late spike of the now largest single category. If they did, those votes don't necessarily represent what the players want.


III. Can't Change Votes

Several folks have reached out to me and claimed they want to change from a NO vote to a YES vote, but they can't. That's my fault for not setting up the poll correctly. Fixing it would reset all of the votes, so I haven't. This basically means that voting doesn't take into account peoples' opinions being swayed one way or another.


All-in-all, the results of the poll show the following:

- Players still active here want consolidation with a strong majority, but are split on their preference for how consolidation should happen.

- Staff are strongly opposed to temporary consolidation.

- This poll has generated more forum activity for SOI than it's seen in quite a long time. :p Even having this discussion seems to have (at least temporarily) boosted the active number of players in the game, somewhat.


I'm most interested in the questions I posed in my previous post. Sure, maybe there is zero chance for staff to be swayed towards this idea. That doesn't negate the value of discussing the measure, though. If the staff is wise, it might help them realize what can be done to help improve things, even if consolidation isn't something they pursue.

The idea that players should just log in and play to help the game, if the game isn't working for them, isn't a good idea MrT2G. We need to ask ourselves why the game isn't working.

Like Kory said, Laketown can't be the magic bullet. Laketown needs players. SOI needs players. Players aren't going to come back without something to draw them back. So, how do we make that happen?

For the purposes of this thread, at least, we're discussing whether a simple, temporary consolidation could make that happen.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Nimrod » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:31 pm

Gobbo wrote:Frigga, 'you be the change' 90% of this is a staff issue. What have you been up to in the last..3 months? I thought you had a focus on crafts, whats up with farming after a year of beta?

Staff are volunteers and I have no problem with that you are not obligated to do anything, but you Frigga just come around from time to time and say something condescending and unhelpful. Do you do anything else?


Antagonistic posts do not help, Gobbo. Keep it respectful. It would make me feel a lot better if you would consider just how hurtful these words were and what you might do to make it better.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Nimrod » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:35 pm

Songweaver wrote:- This poll has generated more forum activity for SOI than it's seen in quite a long time. :p Even having this discussion seems to have (at least temporarily) boosted the active number of players in the game, somewhat.


That's hilarious. :lol:
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby cfelch » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:36 pm

Nimrod wrote:
Gobbo wrote:Frigga, 'you be the change' 90% of this is a staff issue. What have you been up to in the last..3 months? I thought you had a focus on crafts, whats up with farming after a year of beta?

Staff are volunteers and I have no problem with that you are not obligated to do anything, but you Frigga just come around from time to time and say something condescending and unhelpful. Do you do anything else?


Antagonistic posts do not help, Gobbo. Keep it respectful. It would make me feel a lot better if you would consider just how hurtful these words were and what you might do to make it better.


Reiterating a point already made by another staffer seems antagonizing in its own right.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby cfelch » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:50 pm

Nimrod wrote:
Songweaver wrote:- This poll has generated more forum activity for SOI than it's seen in quite a long time. :p Even having this discussion seems to have (at least temporarily) boosted the active number of players in the game, somewhat.


That's hilarious. :lol:


Mocking people's opinions is not very respectful.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Rishte » Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:58 pm

This thread is about consolidating the game to one Sphere which Staff have said is not in the works. It is not going to happen in the foreseeable future.

Stay on the topic and stop insulting and trolling each other and staff or this thread will be locked immediately.

Be adults or be quiet. This is no way to act in front of new players.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby cfelch » Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:00 pm

Rishte wrote:This thread is about consolidating the game to one Sphere which Staff have said is not in the works. It is not going to happen in the foreseeable future.

Stay on the topic and stop insulting and trolling each other and staff or this thread will be locked immediately.

Be adults or be quiet. This is no way to act in front of new players.


If staff aren't entertaining the idea, hasn't the thread run it's course?
Hippocracy aside, staff should have the same obligation to be adults as players.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Real » Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:08 pm

Trolling is not being an adult, cfelch.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby cfelch » Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:10 pm

Calling someone a hypocrite seems like whistle-blowing to me.
If i am wrong, please enlighten me.
Why assume that it is trolling anyway?
That does a disservice to the discussion at large.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby tehkory » Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:28 pm

I would also argue, and have that playing the Man of Shadow has it's greatest strength when you have Men of Twilight to play off of, the greatest RP is in the difference. So I'd love to see a good Man of Shadow, indeed, I've seen that transformation with at least one PC and loved it. I'd also love to see more "Men of Twilight" shine on the more white side of the spectrum, just more variance for flavor.

Belatedly, Frigga, but we're using these terms very differently, I'm rather sure, as you can't really 'transform' from one to the other.

Men of Shadow refers to those Races that are directly, generally considered lesser/evil/servants of the Shadow, and were not a part of the Edain, the three tribes of Men most prominent in the Silmarillion. Haradrim, Easterlings, et cetera. It does not refer to Grima Wormtongue, not culturally. It does not refer to any PCs you've allowed in game(I imagine), and a Man of Shadow is not someone who will transition to a Man of Twilight(Rohirrim, Dunlendings), much less a Man of Light(Numenoreans/Gondorians-sorta).

See here:
http://www.glyphweb.com/arda/m/menofthetwilight.html

We're mostly Men of Twilight in this game, at least so far, with a handful of characters professing Gondorian heritage, and whether or not that makes them part/mostly Numenorean or not is up to interpretation.

The disagreement is whether to open an area for them separate
from or instead of the "main human sphere" or instead of the Orcs.

Instead of or in addition to the orcs. It won't do the problem I'm discussing any good if you give Laketown Easterlings, certainly. We need to see playable Men of Shadow at least alongside goblins/orcs, and at best EXCLUSIVELY, if we want to see intersphere conflict go well.
Last edited by tehkory on Fri Jul 17, 2015 4:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby bjg2k1us » Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:51 pm

If we're discussing only the question of "should SOI be reduced to a single sphere", then the answer is no, unless for a very short time while an alternative is being prepared. Telling all the orc players to play in Utterby, or all the human players to play in Vadok Mal, is not likely to solve the problem of low turnout all on its own. Likewise, should Laketown stand alone as the only sphere once it opens? No.

Pure consolidation would solve some of the underlying problems in the way that amputating a leg can treat a blister on your toe, but that doesn't mean it's the best solution.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Matt » Fri Jul 17, 2015 9:50 pm

I jokingly voted for vadok mal knowing this is never going to happen. It would probably help a bit. But there's other things that would help a lot more. Either way if you close the orc sphere what do you accomplish? Making radio roll a human while all the orcs just wait til the new sphere opens and theres a rpt? If you close utterby? Five of us go orc around with radio and a few oldies maaaaybe come back for a bit. Both options I see a lot of negatives.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Rivean » Fri Jul 17, 2015 9:54 pm

cfelch wrote:Hippocracy aside, staff should have the same obligation to be adults as players.

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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Nimrod » Sat Jul 18, 2015 8:25 am

tehkory wrote:I'll keep logging in, when I've the time. We'll all keep putting hours in to see that this is a better game, because it's cooperative and we work together to do that. Full-steam ahead, do what you want to do. The best MUD is one where Staff stick to their own vision of what they want religiously, and don't dilute it for people bitching. If you've got a vision, follow it. Stay the course.


Thank you, Cory. I am a fanatic for following through on 'The Plan'. You can count on us sticking to the vision as long as I'm around.

tehkory wrote:But I guarantee you staying the course won't fix PvP, or a lack of inter-sphere roleplay. If your vision involves fixing that, you need to change your vision. If you don't care, then it's not a problem, and the players that want it can find another game, or make their own. But they'll also continue to point out that this is a problem(and it is), and that it's not been fixed(it hasn't), and that you're not going to see it fixed down the line as-is(you won't).

Orcs are fundamentally evil and debased to the core, both to Tolkien and all but the most liberal, uncommon interpretation of players and scholars/authors alike( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Last_Ringbearer presents a rare exception to this opinion, but is of course utterly uncanon ). Farms, fish, republics and mayors, and ANYTHING that can be contained within Laketown won't change that. You need Men of Shadow to bridge the gap between Evil and Men of Twilight.


I agree with you that PvP does not work well at the moment, Cory. Your post was quite well-written and I appreciate the pithiness and insightful post.

The issue of PvP is on my mind, but has definitely taken a back-seat to Laketown and pounding out the infrastructure for Beta. For those that are PvP addicts, don't worry too much, I'm a huge fan of PvP and I will eventually turn my attention that way. For now though, the PvP fans are basically on their own, though we will support you as best we can during skirmishes.

An excellent post, Cory, thanks.
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby Nimrod » Sat Jul 18, 2015 8:35 am

cfelch wrote:
Nimrod wrote:
Songweaver wrote:- This poll has generated more forum activity for SOI than it's seen in quite a long time. :p Even having this discussion seems to have (at least temporarily) boosted the active number of players in the game, somewhat.


That's hilarious. :lol:


Mocking people's opinions is not very respectful.


I wasn't mocking Songweaver's post, I was laughing at the truth of it, because we did have 20 people online the very day this thread blew up. It was hilarious.

Stop reading cynicism into every thing I write, please. As a young staffer said almost a decade ago:

If what I write can be read in a good way and a bad way, I mean the good way!
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Re: Is it time to consolidate?

Postby cfelch » Sat Jul 18, 2015 8:37 am

My apologies Nimrod, it just seemed the other in light of your immediately preceding post.
Context is everything, no?
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