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-Whaat- do you all want

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-Whaat- do you all want

Postby Smooly » Wed Sep 17, 2014 2:53 pm

Since there is a thread full of complaints on nearly every forum. >edited< What seems to be the problem? Personally all I hear is "He's getting plot, I'm not!", "They're getting this, I'm not!". Worded differently so it doesn't come out as straight up >edited<

Edit: Sorry if I just made your lives a thousand times harder imms, can delete it if you want
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby krelm » Wed Sep 17, 2014 2:54 pm

Man, all I want to do is RP.

Nothing so far has hindered that.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Smooly » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:07 pm

krelm wrote:Man, all I want to do is RP.

Nothing so far has hindered that.


I know right? Just because custom-tailored plots are being thrown at you the moment you log on doesn't make the game awful. I think the imms have been pretty fair for the most part on everything. Try being associated with Krelm on old SoI for awhile. You'll see what I mean :lol:
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Sabrelon » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:08 pm

krelm wrote:Man, all I want to do is RP.

Nothing so far has hindered that.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby EltanimRas » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:10 pm

This is an interesting question, but I'm sleepy. Y'all try not to get it locked before my tomorrow morning, okay?
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby krelm » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:10 pm

Considering all the >stuff< I had to wade through in old SoI, or Atonement BETA, or Haven, just to RP, I honestly feel that this incarnation of SoI is probably the second or third-best MUD I've played.

It's not perfect, and I've had to put up with a small amount of shit, but compared to the oceans of >doo-doo< of the aforementioned, I'd say it's pretty damn good. I don't know why everyone else has a problem with it, especially considering it's in ALPHA.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby tehkory » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:10 pm

Smooly wrote:Since there is a thread full of complaints on nearly every forum. Can we just all QQ into one if we have to? What seems to be the problem? Personally all I hear is "mass marine ball too stronk", "omg nerf mutalisk rush". Worded differently so it doesn't come out as straight up bitching

Edit: Sorry if I just made your lives a thousand times harder imms, can delete it if you want

You'll find a post or two like this in any game's beta. I changed it to Starcraft 2, but it's all the same.

It's an alpha. That means it needs feedback. It needs balanced. It doesn't need a slew of players insulting eachother and getting away with it.

Learn to either read or ignore it. Half reading does you no credit.
Last edited by tehkory on Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:14 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Tiamat » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:11 pm

I think it's human nature to complain about all the things you don't have, and be silently appreciative (or take it for granted) on the things you do have. After Staffing on many games, I've learned to take complaints with a grain of salt. I don't particularly mind feedback when it's given, so long as it's done in a constructive way. I think there's a lot to be learned from each other, and there will be inevitably times when we don't see eye to eye.

In a way, negative constructive feedback is a compliment as a developer. It means that someone cares enough to tell you what they think is wrong with the game, and what direction you can go to fix it. I think the forums become a much more endurable and enjoyable experience if you see it from that perspective.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Smooly » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:23 pm

tehkory wrote:It's an alpha. That means it needs feedback. It needs balanced.


Well feedback doesn't have to include one mentioning how they quit with every post too :(. >edited<
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Fulgrim » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:53 pm

As an example of how little I want to lock and obfuscate players and their general concerns, I'll leave this thread and a user's grievance filled farewell open to discussion.

As always, if you cannot abide by the posted policies, expect moderation. You needn't expect to have your thread locked every time it is far out the left field.

Though I might post a pithy comment or two on why something happened, occasionally. Or I might not.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby MrDvAnt » Wed Sep 17, 2014 4:37 pm

I, for one, support the new hardline approach to moderation. I stopped commenting completely on the forums for some time due to the outright hostility of other players. As far as what I want, I've got it. You guys are doing a great job. The only thing I could ask for is for people to chill out a bit enjoy the game as the creators mean it to be instead of trying to force their own expectations and desires onto it.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby tehkory » Wed Sep 17, 2014 4:44 pm

MrDvAnt wrote:I, for one, support the new hardline approach to moderation. I stopped commenting completely on the forums for some time due to the outright hostility of other players. As far as what I want, I've got it. You guys are doing a great job. The only thing I could ask for is for people to chill out a bit enjoy the game as the creators mean it to be instead of trying to force their own expectations and desires onto it.


Yup. Agree fully. What I've said multiple times(what I want) is a clarity of vision/fullness of concept, whether or not it matches the 'original' vision for the game. As long as I'm pre-aware what I'm going to be playing in, awesome.

The policy is meant to be a policy in place of where we were before, with no policy, no intent to moderate the boards, and no ability to point players to an obvious subset of decided upon rules.

This is great, wonderful, amazing news. Speaking of things we -want-, you'll find this is what I was asking for all along. Standards.

The logic of these changes is due to the fact that we've received an alarming number of forward notices from different players that they have quit not because of events occuring in game, not because of the inability to develop and progress the MUD, and not because, surprisingly, "I hate X player group!"

But because the boards are toxic, and it drove them away.

No more.


I'm just...not entirely certain where the toxic posts are. Hopefully you've already issued warnings to the players you view as toxic. I don't think Rivean's one. But we can take a look!

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1702

Over here, Songweaver brought up some legitimate concerns about gear. Staff noted they were talking about it, and everything went swimmingly. Except...

Edited post.


Right. Well, I'm sure it's only one thread.

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1347

Here's another one. Raukran gives a legitimate complaint. Some changes were even implemented in-game! And nobody insulted anybody else. A++.

viewtopic.php?f=25&t=1659

Here people posted some legitimate concerns about how RPTs were publicized, announced, and able to be interacted with. It was locked without any real toxicity on either side, only to be continued...

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1700

Here. With a bit more ugliness, yet again.

Edited post.

Name-calling. Joy.

Luckily Admins were pretty positive, so all-in-all it was a success.

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1715&p=21664

And now we got this. Admin responses are a little byzantine for my tastes, but oh well. Players are pretty positive, and able to discuss things without resorting to toxicit--
edited

Well, it's only one problem-player.
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I'm sure none of these players has posted in any complaint/concerns threads, or in fact created a complaint thread of their own.
Taurgalas wrote:the negativity on the forums...vitriol.

Aye-yai-yai, I'm beginning to see your point.

Fulgrim wrote:From here on out, there is going to be a lot less "light-touch" to the toxic forum problem, and there'll be few if's, and's and buts about it. We respect people's opinions and value people having the ability to broach a variety of subjects, but we will be watching for instances in which we feel a post provides more negativity than tangible feedback, and cut it down to the important, finite details and (politely supplied) opinions of that user.

Those who can't uphold a baseline degree of decorum on the boards won't be ignored.

Awesome. I've been seeing a lot of it lately, and--
Smooly wrote:Edited post.

Oh, hey there! Another thread.
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1717
Oh, right. It's this very thread. I'm sure Admins will--
Smooly wrote:Edited post.

Like I said, I'm sure Admins will deal with the toxic, problem players before too long. After all...that's the reason for the policy, isn't it?

As-is, looking back I can't imagine that you're sending any notice to Rivean/EltanimRas/Songweaver for their waves of toxic negativity, so I can't see why threads were getting locked, rather than asshole posts just deleted.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Fulgrim » Wed Sep 17, 2014 4:56 pm

Every time I see something that could be inflammatory, or receive a report about something, you can rest assured I'll answer to it.

Songweaver, Rivean and EltanimRas haven't been issued any warnings or told they're responsible for a wave of toxicity yadayada whatever what-have-you. If you think her thread was locked because she's a problem player, that's completely unrelated to the reason therein.

Rivean went to the board and aired out his various grievances. I've said this before, but oh well. Work on the game is ongoing. To say (user's) grievances are negligible is inaccurate, but to say all of them will be answered would be disingenuous of me. So I'm not going to say that, I'm going to say he's said why he's leaving, and that's too bad, because I feel staff already has a good idea of where we're heading with the game and we hope the players will enjoy the ride.

That's not to say discussion, suggestions and feedback aren't welcome, or haven't been taken into account. I've pushed forward several things based on player feedback. Some of it in one form or another, maybe not the ones players imagined.

If you've noticed instances of excessive swearing that hasn't been edited, or obviously mean, inflammatory languages, I just/other staff haven't gotten to editing it yet, we'll try to be as rapid as possible with that.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Cola » Wed Sep 17, 2014 5:04 pm

I would say staff are between a rock and a hard place.

An RPI mud is kind of multi-authored novel, but also kind of an ad-lib theatre project. In any case, mystery and suspense are an important aspect to story-telling, and staff control many of the important plot secrets, whether through coded means or by intervening outside of raw code. Along with that secrecy comes the possibility of favoritism. That is so much of a problem that hardly any RPI muds avoid it.

Staff just can't say "trust us" and expose nothing. Previous experience has shown that never works out well; not just for MUDs but for larger, more professional institutions like the American NSA. So, how might staff cultivate player trust? There are a number of possible solutions, but one I'd suggest is much more openness and accountability.

I would suggest that staff be required to keep a log of when they make any substantial intervention in the coded world: distributing items that cannot be crafted (objects like weapons and keys to secret rooms, etc.); PKs or resurrections; interventions to give/deprive players skills/abilities beyond what the code automates, or giving characters/players non-public dream or eureka-moment 'hints' about something. (This kind of record should already be a required internal process.)

After a few month's delay the record gets posted in the forums. (Enough time for players to still remember the events, but also for the plot to move on and the secrets to be 'old' and excitement to cool.) It would include a brief description of the intervention, the staff member(s) behind it, and the username of the player(s) who received the benefit or detriment. That way while we don't have the ability to monitor staff in real-time, we can retro-actively get a whole new level of insight into what they have been up to, and with whom. If they are doing their jobs right, this can reassure all of us, and disable many of the accusations that are being posted now, which are often based as much on suspicion and hearsay as on reliable facts. If staff are tempted to cut a corner-- help out a buddy-- etc. they'll think twice knowing they'll have to answer to the entire community eventually. (I think we all know how fickle some friendships can be, and interventions that they avoid recording have a good chance of coming out anyway.)

I think we all realize the people tend to behave better when they believe they are being monitored. I believe staff WANT to behave the best they can, but a process like this would make it a little easier for them to resist temptation or think twice about how an action might appear to others. Sometimes we apply an ethical process internally, and we convince ourselves it is right and proper, but when we imagine justifying our actions to others, we quickly realize that we on very thin ice. It won't completely frustrate a malicious staff member, but it would make their maliciousness more difficult.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Matt » Wed Sep 17, 2014 5:40 pm

I completely trust the current staff when it comes to being honest and well meaning. It's really one of the best staffs in RPI history no joke.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Cola » Wed Sep 17, 2014 5:43 pm

Matt wrote:I completely trust the current staff when it comes to being honest and well meaning. It's really one of the best staffs in RPI history no joke.


Then the process I propose would provide no significant burden.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Rivean » Wed Sep 17, 2014 5:44 pm

Matt wrote:I completely trust the current staff when it comes to being honest and well meaning. It's really one of the best staffs in RPI history no joke.


I'd like to reiterate this, despite the fact that my current levels of frustration with this moderation thing (which, despite my best efforts, has after all turned into another debate) have reached epic levels.

I have my complaints, and some of them are pretty serious but I do not believe we have ever had as honest a staff as this, ever.

That said, honesty isn't everything, which is why that other thread.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Smooly » Wed Sep 17, 2014 5:45 pm

It be for everyone. I got <3's for you Tehkory, no </3
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Hawkwind » Wed Sep 17, 2014 6:29 pm

krelm wrote:Man, all I want to do is RP.

Nothing so far has hindered that.


Simple and straight forward. I would like to see people give both experienced and green staff a lot more breathing room.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Alcarin » Wed Sep 17, 2014 6:49 pm

Man, all I want to do is kill you all with spiders.

I mean, uh.

All I want to do is keep making the game happen. Yeah. That last one. The spiders are just a bonus. Er. I mean, uh.. A side effect.

Yeah...
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby MrDvAnt » Wed Sep 17, 2014 7:25 pm

Alcarin wrote:Man, all I want to do is kill you all with spiders.

I mean, uh.

All I want to do is keep making the game happen. Yeah. That last one. The spiders are just a bonus. Er. I mean, uh.. A side effect.

Yeah...


Alcarin's Publicist: Rumors of spiders are grossly exaggerated and without merit. Any instances of spiders killing someone and snacking on their bodily fluids are purely coincidental and have no bearing whatsoever on my client's policies.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Alcarin » Wed Sep 17, 2014 7:35 pm

MrDvAnt wrote:
Alcarin wrote:Man, all I want to do is kill you all with spiders.

I mean, uh.

All I want to do is keep making the game happen. Yeah. That last one. The spiders are just a bonus. Er. I mean, uh.. A side effect.

Yeah...


Alcarin's Publicist: Rumors of spiders are grossly exaggerated and without merit. Any instances of spiders killing someone and snacking on their bodily fluids are purely coincidental and have no bearing whatsoever on my client's policies.


My name is Alcarin and I endorse this message!
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Songweaver » Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:32 pm

I do my best to be supportive of the staff publicly, and helpful to the staff privately. Few instances of my public complaints are due to not feeling heard privately about specific issues, and I've attempted to present those cases in a logical and helpful way with the inclusion of suggestions and examples.

One recent post may have been reactionary on my part, and I always encourage both staff and players and myself to avoid being reactionary whenever possible. A lot of the conversation of the past 24 hours, after having read it when I got home tonight and not having partaken in any of it, seems like it might be tending towards being reactionary in essence to me.

But, staff and players are human beings, and when anyone puts this much time and effort into a community/game/project/art-form (man, aren't RPIs demanding?) ... it's bound to happen.


What do I want, Smooly?

I want an epic story that ties into The Hobbit. I want Utterby and Vadok Mal to have an impact and correlation with the eventual story that will take place in Laketown. I want the sub-plots and meta-plots and character-driven stories of ALPHA to explore the untouched aspects of Mirkwood and Middle-Earth in this very awesome era of its canon. I want the Necromancer to succeed (or be foiled) in a plot driven against Utterby in a way that explains why it took him so long (or didn't take him as long as it could have) to return to his full strength by the War of the Rings.

I want all of the plots to tie together in a way to tease and answer some greater story or mystery. I want SOI's "ALPHA" to be a "Prologue" to whatever is to come next.

I want adventure. I want more PC turnover (especially in the "safe" roles, because without any turnover, RPIs always grow stagnant). I want more options for players in regards to the backgrounds of their characters, and I want actions in-game to have tangible consequences.

ETA: I think that RPIs need to be set during "the time that something important happened." With Tolkien and this setting, relatively untouched by canon but leading to a well-documented time and place in canon, SOI has the opportunity to tell an Untold Story through its own vision. There's no reason that Utterby should just be a little logging town. There's no reason that Utterby and Vadok Mal shouldn't be an unknown story as epic and important to the timeline of Middle-Earth as any of the books. Is this the story about how Sauron got his groove back? Is this the story about how unsung heroes gave Bilbo/Gandalf a chance against Smaug and the forces of Sauron at the end of The Hobbit? That's something that the players can effect, guided by the plots generated by RPAs, and that's what I would love to see during ALPHA.

Most of all, I just want to tell a good story, and despite any issues that have turned up (whether brought to light by other folks or myself or by staff themselves), I do not feel that I've been unable to achieve this so far.

Thank you to the good players who've stuck around, and to the RPAs, for helping me feel that way.
Last edited by Songweaver on Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Fulgrim » Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:49 pm

Primarily, our job is that of storytelling, as RPAs. We do hope to spin many a yarn, and bring scariness and creepiness but also mystery, adventure and even a little comedy to the playerbase through our plots.

But...we've taken on MANY responsibilities past storytelling, in order to progress the game's design and implementation. It is proceeding in tandem with that overall story. Where we go from here...it could have a scale like you'd imagined out of a novel, sure, but we'll have to be patient, first.

A thing to keep in mind is that the general goal is for SoI to remain a constant on your MUD client, over the years. It's not a story with a beginning and end like Atonement RPI. We are a different staff and we have different goals in mind while creating for our playerbase.
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Re: -Whaat- do you all want

Postby Songweaver » Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:59 pm

Fulgrim wrote:Primarily, our job is that of storytelling, as RPAs. We do hope to spin many a yarn, and bring scariness and creepiness but also mystery, adventure and even a little comedy to the playerbase through our plots.

But...we've taken on MANY responsibilities past storytelling, in order to progress the game's design and implementation. It is proceeding in tandem with that overall story. Where we go from here...it could have a scale like you'd imagined out of a novel, sure, but we'll have to be patient, first.

A thing to keep in mind is that the general goal is for SoI to remain a constant on your MUD client, over the years. It's not a story with a beginning and end like Atonement RPI. We are a different staff and we have different goals in mind while creating for our playerbase.


Absolutely. I think that's why I described wanting to see SOI's ALPHA be a Prologue to Laketown RPI, which I would like to see be a Prologue to The Hobbit, which in turn is a Prologue to The Lord of the Rings. I think there's rich opportunity to tie all of these things together. I'm not saying I haven't seen that so far, but in answering Smooly's question, I wanted to provide an honest answer of what I hope for out of SOI.
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