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Wish list for The Refuge!


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#1
Ignatius

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With the new forums on the way, we have a great opportunity to change things up so that the forums and community are able to better provide what we all want. Share and discuss what you'd like to see, whether it's getting rid of or tweaking something that's existed on GSAR, or adding something new!

Suggestions can be made, for instance, with a mind towards improving functionality, layout, the clan system, the general way things get done, or anything else. Major changes as well as minor ones are welcome!




A personal wish is for an expandable (or at least larger) text box for forum posts. I've found the GSAR one restrictive when making longer posts, making it hard to see much text at once and forcing a decent bit of scrolling.

A few others I've seen from #forum_reboot are:
  • Naming the GS subforum GSAR
  • Bringing back the Clubs section
  • Putting a focus on JRPGs

View PostGalactaRay, on 13 August 2015 - 08:43 PM, said:

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Ryu Gaia

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View PostIgnatius, on 20 May 2018 - 03:26 AM, said:

Naming the GS subforum GSAR

Yep, definitely want this!
In space, the stars are paved with gold.

No, really, who is Ryu Gaia?

Will anybody tell me?

Does anybody know?


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#3
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Less Wrrrtws.

They practically ruined the last forum.

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#4
Kirigishi

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While I am 100% behind bringing back the four-clan system, I am going to suggest leaving out the associated clan points system. I have observed during our time on this forum that the points system hasn't really done anything to substantially boost activity. In fact, to the opposite effect, it has sometimes become divisive and unnecessarily complicated, such as during the Expedition Into the Mist campaign and when awarding contest prizes.

In my opinion, the clan system is enough of an asset to our community by itself, as it allows members to develop small-group identities/dynamics, as well as engage in a collective world-building project.

Tawny779 said:

you come for the Golden Sun. You stay for the crazy <3

Misery said:

Common sense is the most uncommon of the senses.

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#5
Ignatius

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View PostKirigishi, on 24 May 2018 - 01:37 AM, said:

While I am 100% behind bringing back the four-clan system, I am going to suggest leaving out the associated clan points system. I have observed during our time on this forum that the points system hasn't really done anything to substantially boost activity. In fact, to the opposite effect, it has sometimes become divisive and unnecessarily complicated, such as during the Expedition Into the Mist campaign and when awarding contest prizes.

Clan Points were not awarded for the Expedition into the Mists game, so I don't think that system can be blamed for how that played out. I think these are two issues distinct enough that they can be addressed separately (although, with both being clan-centric at their core, there is necessarily a transferable effect in how they're perceived). For EitM, the problem was in the nature of how the competition was designed compared to what people wanted - the 'direct' competition where groups have incentives to improve their standing in such a way that directly, negatively impacts other groups, did not play out well due to varying assumptions as to how the game should be played. My suggestion for future improvement there would be to be more cautious in the future when considering such 'direct' competition between the groups, and to make sure everyone's on the same page if we do venture in that direction.

The Clan Point system we developed did have its issues, but I'm not convinced those issues are enough to warrant jumping right to getting rid of a similar system entirely. I think we should still have some sort of 'reward' system for activity, and I can still see group points being a part of that, but we'd have to improve the system.

The reward system of Clan Points seemed to have some positive effects, in my eyes, for the first era or two, until the novelty wore off. It was too easy for activity (and thus the rewards) to become imbalanced between clans, to the point where it would soon seem that certain clans were out of contention for any 'rewards' apart from the Clan Points themselves. And those Clan Points didn’t translate very well into clan pride, bragging rights or other benefits unless you finished in first place, a spot primarily taken up by the same two clans over all four eras.  Possible improvements that come to mind:
  • A system that better rewards activity for groups or individuals who won't end up at the top of a leaderboard. Maybe provide some sort of bonus once certain thresholds are reached, in the form of group points, medals (see below), coins if we still have a worthwhile coin system, perks in other ongoing activities, etc.
  • Reducing the number of total groups from our standard four, to try and keep the groups more balanced and to keep each one more active - we are obviously looking to grow our community through this migration, but it's hard to develop and maintain small-group identities and pride with just a couple of active members per group. Although four does seem to be some sort of magic number in JRPGs...
  • Nerfing amounts of points awarded for pure posting, instead giving more emphasis to participation in activities and events
Part of such a redesigned system could maybe include a more extensive medal area? I really like the aesthetics of the banners/drapey cloth things we have here, but they only hold 4 medals, which has restricted how often they're awarded. I think it could be nice if we gave them out a bit more liberally, for participating in/winning certain events or activities - BGO, Mafia, CAH, roleplays/worldbuilding - and/or for reaching milestones like hitting a certain post count during a post bomb, creating X number of topics, etc. This would have an added bonus of giving newcomers a quick idea of what kinds of activities the community hosts and values, just by looking at someone's list of medals.

As the one who probably awarded most of the Clan Points, I also disagree that it was overly complicated. We set up a standard table to refer to, and then made things up on the fly for special events that weren't in the table. It wasn't perfect, and it required some tweaking as we went along, but I didn't find the logistics of the system too difficult (says the guy who didn't have to come up with the balancing formulae). So, although I wouldn't wholly object to doing away with group points, at least to start, I don't think we necessarily have to strike a group point-like system off our list of possibilities - and I do think that we should keep some sort of reward system for activity.

View PostGalactaRay, on 13 August 2015 - 08:43 PM, said:

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#6
Ryu Gaia

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Maybe we could do user-defined groups instead of clans. The 2004-2005 GSAR RP forum did this with middling success (it became overly-competitive, my bad), but I think done correctly (ie by adults and not 13-year-olds) it will go fine.
In space, the stars are paved with gold.

No, really, who is Ryu Gaia?

Will anybody tell me?

Does anybody know?


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#7
Ignatius

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What do you mean by "user-defined groups"?

View PostGalactaRay, on 13 August 2015 - 08:43 PM, said:

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#8
Ryu Gaia

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Clubs with their own subforums / permission masks to see their subforums. Anyone can start one and set their own rules for joining / what the group activities are.
In space, the stars are paved with gold.

No, really, who is Ryu Gaia?

Will anybody tell me?

Does anybody know?


Signature from when I was in Mercury below:
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#9
Kirigishi

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 Ignatius, on 24 May 2018 - 05:55 AM, said:

  • A system that better rewards activity for groups or individuals who won't end up at the top of a leaderboard. Maybe provide some sort of bonus once certain thresholds are reached, in the form of group points, medals (see below), coins if we still have a worthwhile coin system, perks in other ongoing activities, etc.
  • Nerfing amounts of points awarded for pure posting, instead giving more emphasis to participation in activities and events

Okay, I'm down for these.

As for the number of groups-- Maybe three, then? This will somewhat reduce the possibilities for inter-clan dynamics during worldbuilding, but I see your point about trying to keep all the groups active. From my experience, a core of three or four active members per group is enough to really drive group identity, and by my estimate we have about the right amount to make three groups solidly happen. We just need to be careful about the balancing. (Also keep in mind that we are hoping to build our member base, if only slightly.)

@Ryu: Members will definitely be able to set up clubs for various activities non-specific to the Refuge, but I do feel pretty strongly about us maintaining a forum-wide system. Of course, members won't be required to join a clan, but I think such a system is important for our larger community identity.

Tawny779 said:

you come for the Golden Sun. You stay for the crazy <3

Misery said:

Common sense is the most uncommon of the senses.

Quote

Dave: I'm becoming a doctor.
Dave: I like people
Dave: ...when they're unconscious

#10
Ignatius

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View PostKirigishi, on 24 May 2018 - 01:47 PM, said:

but I do feel pretty strongly about us maintaining a forum-wide system.
What meaning are you attributing to "forum-wide system" that would include our current clans but exclude these clubs? My understanding of the suggestion is that they would fill a very similar niche, but with clubs being more chaotic, haha.

View PostRyu Gaia, on 24 May 2018 - 07:24 AM, said:

Clubs with their own subforums / permission masks to see their subforums. Anyone can start one and set their own rules for joining / what the group activities are.
Hmmmm. I'm definitely down for clubs, but I'm not sure about them existing on the same level as our current clan system. It's an intriguing idea that could give rise to interesting intergroup dynamics. But I would be concerned about fluctuating numbers of groups with non-equivalent scopes making competitions even more lopsided, which would be a problem if competitions were to continue. Another possible problem is that if these clubs were centered around certain shared interests and activities, they could limit inter-club interaction and exclude others from stuff they'd be interested in, especially if private forums are involved. For example, if there's a Gaming Club - everyone here likes gaming in some form or another. How much gaming-related stuff are non-members not going to see/get to participate in/feel like an outsider while participating in? Can you give examples of the scopes of clubs you have in mind/what clubs people came up with before?

View PostGalactaRay, on 13 August 2015 - 08:43 PM, said:

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#11
Ryu Gaia

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Ah, I see that in retrospect, "club" was the wrong word for it.

On the GSAR RP forums, the "clans" were made up by the users. I ran the Sol Army; Tinder ran The Four Realms; someone else ran the Shinobi Clan, etc. There were maybe a dozen "clans," and anyone could start one (although I think you might have needed a certain number of posts or to meet some other condition before you could). They weren't clubs in the sense of being focused on a narrow interest, but they weren't clans in the sense of necessarily belonging to a shared mythos (or to the elemental clan structure of Golden Sun---in fact, there weren't any elemental clans at all). People would have the freedom to instantiate mythology as they pleased in RP, of course.
In space, the stars are paved with gold.

No, really, who is Ryu Gaia?

Will anybody tell me?

Does anybody know?


Signature from when I was in Mercury below:
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#12
Kirigishi

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@Ryu: Would members be allowed to join more than one group at a time? I can't help but imagine a bunch of groups cropping up because their founders get inspired one day, only for the group to never grow beyond one or two members, and then to die out within two or three weeks. Seems a bit "chaotic", as Ig put it.

View PostIgnatius, on 28 May 2018 - 09:21 PM, said:

What meaning are you attributing to "forum-wide system" that would include our current clans but exclude these clubs? My understanding of the suggestion is that they would fill a very similar niche, but with clubs being more chaotic, haha.

"Forum-wide" probably wasn't the best word for what I was going for either. But basically a system where certain overarching parameters are already put into place before members start to explore and develop their groups. On this current forum, for example, the clan system was pre-defined as having four clans, all set in a fictional world governed by Golden Sun physics. A common world map was applied to all groups for world-building purposes, and we even launched forum-wide world-building campaigns. These kinds of activities, as well as the basic level of organization overseen by the staff, are elements I feel we should keep.

Tawny779 said:

you come for the Golden Sun. You stay for the crazy <3

Misery said:

Common sense is the most uncommon of the senses.

Quote

Dave: I'm becoming a doctor.
Dave: I like people
Dave: ...when they're unconscious

#13
Ryu Gaia

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View PostKirigishi, on 29 May 2018 - 02:07 PM, said:

@Ryu: Would members be allowed to join more than one group at a time? I can't help but imagine a bunch of groups cropping up because their founders get inspired one day, only for the group to never grow beyond one or two members, and then to die out within two or three weeks. Seems a bit "chaotic", as Ig put it.

No, each member could only join one. There was a little chaos because clan membership was pretty flexible overall, but it could also be up to each clan to decide conditions of joining.
In space, the stars are paved with gold.

No, really, who is Ryu Gaia?

Will anybody tell me?

Does anybody know?


Signature from when I was in Mercury below:
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#14
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