[Really long post ahead]
Alahmnat has posted some brilliant analyses of Uru on his blog. He also posted about the community. I have a lot to say about the community as well.
Let’s begin with a statement that I see far too often in signatures, but that I’m finally starting to see the necessity of: This post represents my personal views. These are not the views of the Guild of Writers, or the H’uru development team, or any other group which I might be a member of. This is me and my views.
So I posted about how dreadfully disorganized I thought the Guild of Messengers was. I was looking for someone to keep as a contact, since as GoW Councilor of PR, it would be my job to pass newsletters and announcements on to the GoMe. No suck luck. I come to a site that seems horribly disorganized, has no clear information about who can be contacted, has no tutorial for submitting news items, and has an unskinned forum with a history of censorship and highly invasive anti-spam measures. So I make a post that is quite blunt that tells them so. Apparently they weren’t too happy.
Do they think that the GoW didn’t receive criticism? We were told repeatedly by the Maintainers that we needed structure and something so that the GoM could actually start working with us. We implemented that, had elections, and now have a good solid working relationship with the Maintainers. Our structure is admittedly very loose, the elected positions really don’t have much power and aren’t much more than contact personnel. But at least we have a list of who can be contacted. The Maintainers also have such a list, and I’m sure that the GoG has something similar.
So I was yelled at by some angry Messengers. Oh well, not the first time, probably not the last. Ye good ‘ole Bridge Incendiary Device 500 apparently either works really well, or doesn’t work at all. I’m not worried about burning bridges with people, because in situations like these, I can see that the Messengers are going to fail miserably if they don’t get their act together. They are supposed to be the #1 news source for Uru, but if I post something on UO, MC, or even GoW it’ll get more views and more results. The GoMe really need to make themselves invaluable as a system, or they will fall to the way-side.
And back to the community… The lovely Myst and Uru community. Usually, thinking about the community brings on feelings of nausea and disgust. I’ve found my niches, I know where I have friends, and I tend to frequent those places. CyanChat and H’uru often feel like an extended family to me. The issue that is being dragged up is about certain groups.
I’ve seen enough H’uru bashing to have become mostly insensitive to it. If you use the word “hack”, be prepared to get bashed repeatedly.
UU destroyed the community. Let me assure you that UU had its good points, but the bad ones far outweigh the good. The shards spread the community out, and the cohesiveness that had been known was lost.
The AdminKI is an area which isn’t often discussed. It led to the downfall of a lot of potential good that UU had. It was a great idea in concept: a way to edit the Vault without needing to close the game and run the Vault Manager. Then someone decided that it should contain fun code like warping objects around, or changing fog colours. Well, that’s great for Python experience and modding the game, but horrible for any sense of In Character.
Back in Prologue, a lot of stuff was IC. In UU, almost all of the IC was destroyed by the drama between shards, the AdminKI, and (worse) the UserKI. MOUL came around, and there was no IC left. Nobody knew how to play IC, and the storyline became watered down and dead. As surely as UU brought life to MOUL, it also took that life.
I’m very sick of seeing people try to compare MOUL and UU in terms of lifetime. They are completely different entities with no common ground for comparison. UU was essentially free, it required a one-time charge of less than $10, and could run independent of income from players. MOUL on the other hand had a paid staff developing content, and required income to sustain itself. UU could have conceivably lived for another 5 years with no change, MOUL could not.
Alahmnat names the Slackers as a poison to the community. While I agree with many of the policies over at the Slackers forums (such as not ever closing threads and allowing open flaming to occur), since the shutdown of UU they seem to have made it their purpose to act like self-appointed kings of Uru and to smack down all who disagree with them. Did losing UU and the precious AdminKI really make everyone so bitter? I didn’t like MOUL, I thought that the story was lacking, the content was missing that special quality, and the major issues weren’t being deal with. But I recognized that Cyan was (hopefully) doing their best. I wasn’t going to go and bash them, or worse, start a “church of Rand Miller” and play sarcastic homage.
I have no issues with many of the Slackers members, I know many of them on a personal basis and find them to be wonderful people. I fail to see what they consider their purpose to be though. MOUL shuts down and suddenly they take on a “we told you so” attitude that is horribly unneeded.
In fairness, the Slackers aren’t the only problem, but they are the most identifiable of the groups. A look at their forum sees them bashing the Guild of Greeters, Cyan, the opposers of Cyan, and generally everyone else in the community.
It really surprises me sometimes that we still have a community after the continuous arguing and fighting. If you need to find me, I’ll be over at GoW working on some new Ages for Uru…