Of Roleplay, Metagame, and OOC

SeirSeir Seein' All the ThingsGetting high off your emotionMember Posts: 983 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited April 2017 in Harpy's Head Tavern
Hey all,

Many of you know me as Seir and some of you know me as the player behind Seir, Justin. I'm writing on the forums today to discuss a troubling pattern that I've noticed, something that only struck me very recently as I became slowly cognizant of it. What I speak of is metagaming, the OOC connections that we establish as players with one another, and how detrimental they can be to the game on a whole when left unchecked. In some ways, I feel like this post has been due over the last few weeks; in some other ways, I feel like it is something that should have been said years ago. Regardless of the when, I am taking the time now to post on trends and activities that I, and to my knowledge, other players have noticed as well.

The first thing that some of you may ask is: "Why do you care? Why are you the one making this post?" I'm making this post for a variety of reasons: I'm a long time IRE veteran of 18 (almost 19) years now, I have achieved a fair amount of success in Aetolia having been a notable combatant, role player, order head, Speaker, Benandanti, war leader, and one of the folks that some consider to have had an instrumental hand in improving Duiran back in the day. I believe, perhaps out of hubris, that this may allow me to have more influence by being the one making this post, and as some of you may know, I have a tendency (for better or worse) to speak up when I feel like something is very wrong, even if it may cause me to be outcast as a result.

To start off, I will state that I recently quit the Aetolian Discord. I did not quit the Discord out of any "ragequit" moments, a disagreement with another player, or because I felt like a social pariah there. To the contrary, I felt rather accepted by many of the players in the Discord, but what really began to bug me over the last few weeks was how players were disparaging others, talking about IC things OOCly (and vice versa), and in my opinion: cultivating an atmosphere that made a few others feel like outcasts. Is this unique to the Discord? No, this is a problem that I've seen in the past across IRE in general, be it via Skype groups, in-game OOC clans, and a more infamously and close-to-home example: IRC. This is also not a problem exhibited by all players within the Discord, so I do not want any players to feel like I'm directly targeting them or outright condemning the Discord on a whole. I'm merely outlining some of the behaviors, patterns, and trends demonstrated by a few players in order to raise awareness, hopefully putting a damper on it.

The first I brought up is players disparaging other players. I have seen a disturbing number of folks (myself having even been guilty of it at times) utterly trashing or talking poorly about one another, those outside of the Discord, and even about certain members of the administration. To say that this is toxic is an understatement, because I do not think that some of the people complicit in this realize how much of an adverse effect it can have on that other player's experience when and if they find out. In the case of an administrator, it can cause them to "burn out" because, despite their best efforts and good intentions, some players can just react outright callously towards events or roleplay. While I am all for raising another player's awareness towards negative behavior, all this does is create a paranoid, self-destructive spiral that some of these players can never escape from. In addition, this puts preconceived notions in the minds of other folks who may not even know the player involved; however, because of people discussing this individual, they're making that person a pariah to those who don't even know them and making people less likely to interact with them in-game. In a small roleplay community like Aetolia, this can have a devastating effect. People will end up isolating themselves, lashing out harshly, or even quitting the game because they feel like there's no hope in recovering the image or opinion that other players have of them. This doesn't mean that I think players shouldn't be held accountable by their peers if they act in a manner adverse to the game on a whole... but, a group of players trash talking another routinely is lame, wrong, and deceitful, especially if done behind their back.

The second issue I brought up is metagaming. Yes, metagaming has been a long-standing issue across IRE, but I feel that it always becomes more prolific whenever players come together in large OOC mediums. Whether if it is innocently organizing roleplay with one another, discussing events, etc., this creates a number of issues. For one, it means players start isolating themselves off from one another, not viewing others outside of their circle as worth their time. Now, I know the first response to that is going to be: "Well, I just have people I regularly enjoy interacting with!" Well, I'm not going to say that is wrong. However, think about how you met those people to begin with. At some point, you both were strangers to one another who took a chance, interacted in some shape or form, and established rapport over a period of time. If you applied the mentality you have now, there's a strong chance that you're locking yourself off from people who could also be someone you regularly enjoy interacting with. Additionally, and I cannot say this enough to people who are leaders, you cannot lock yourself off. Obtaining titles in-game like Regent, Speaker, Herald, Orderhead, and even Secretary, means that you have to open yourself up. Titles are not there just to add random lines to your honours that you can circlejerk off to one another privately. They're a bit of a commitment to the organization on a whole, because you're representing that organization as a whole and you owe it to the members of the folks that you're leading to interact with folks outside of your bubble. Case in point, this is what initially made Duiran so great back in the day. We had leaders that strived to become more open, involved, and committed to newbies, oldbies, and everyone in between. What ended up happening, however, was that people quickly isolated themselves into cliques and groups. As a result, players who were isolated ended up leaving Duiran for Spinesreach because, at the time, Moirean was involving everyone and Duiran began to decline. Even now, this is happening, as many Duiran players have left for Enorian and the Illuminai, purely because they've involved one another, there is no perceived elitism/exclusiveness, and people feel motivated to get involved. If you do not feel or want to interact with folks outside of your bubble, that is fine, but you absolutely should not be a leader in that case. Being a leader doesn't mean that you have to sacrifice all of your playing time to new people, but if you're a CL, GM, or Council member and you've only interacted with the same two or three people recently, you should probably have a moment of introspection and try harder to reach out. Otherwise, you might need to ask yourself if you're cut out to be a leader. This also doesn't mean that there is no onus on the other players to reach out to their leaders. If you're shy, that's something you have to get past and you have to put yourself out there if you want people to interact with you. Just sitting in a room somewhere hoping that someone will come interact with you or let you be part of their character's story isn't going to get you anywhere. You need to be the one who initiates, reaches out, and starts that cycle. You get what you give. However, if someone else makes that effort with you, you should at the very least acknowledge it and feel grateful that they want to get involved or know you.

I'm going to conclude this with a personal experience of my own. When I played the game 5-6 years ago, I had a lot that people would've been envious of. I was a semi-decent roleplayer, I was a combatant, a Benandanti, a Secretary, etc.. However, I was a part of the old #NoT IRC chat, which was full of both players and admins both. What ended up happening is that, as a result of incessant teasing and badmouthing, I started lashing out and being paranoid of other players. More over, I began to notice that a lot of the people who I once had very strong friendships with both inside and outside of the game no longer felt I was worth their time. Does this mean I was totally innocent? No, but a lot of my issues could've been salvaged had some of the very similar issues we've having now had been called out. I ended up feeling alone, but I could not quit #NoT out of some feeling of desperation and a desire of being accepted, which is what a lot of us feel, even now. I eventually realized that all the metagaming and negativity in the IRC was affecting me as a player and, for my own health, I had to take a step back and quit from it. I can tell you right now that it was one of the best decisions that I made as a player. The effect of not feeling like I had to make myself appealing to these players who I thought were "elite" was completely gone, like a weight off of my shoulders. Since then, I've firmly believed in establishing my character by my own standards and not others, believing that I'm awesome, and trying to be as inclusive as I can be. Since I've returned to Aetolia, I've applied this mentality and I'm all the more a better player and person for it. However, I quit the Discord because while I may not have been the outcast this time around, I saw others being treated like one and other warning signs that gave me an immense feeling of deja vu.

So, to wrap this up, if I could offer one suggestion to nearly everyone in the game: Stop isolating yourselves to the same people and stop discussing/organziing IC stuff OOCly. You limit yourself and you hinder your ability to meet new people to establish long-term friendships in-game. Not to mention, you end up driving players away who feel like no one cares or wants to give them the time of day. Some of you may disagree with my post, but I know that a lot of people will agree having discussed this very subject with them privately on the Discord, on Skype, and otherwise. If you folks don't want Aetolia's community to die, you should put a little more effort into becoming a greater community rather than little pockets of cliques.
FyrrenNyrusAishiaKarhastKodazaXavinRunasSessizlikJaymiVyxsisKallahAymahDidiTenshyoRhoynnLeana
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Comments

  • FyrrenFyrren Member Posts: 121 ✭✭✭
    This is something I've felt for a while as well. I don't plan to quit Discord though, mostly because I already ignore it as is, heh.
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    Avatar of Fyrren drawn by the amazing Sessizlik.
  • ZailaZaila Pacific TimeMember Posts: 400 ✭✭✭✭
    I've definitely noticed a different trend to my own habits regarding OOC chatting and cliques: the more I interact with someone OOC, often the less I interact IC. The liferier discord is mostly people I rarely RP with. It isn't that I WOULDN'T RP with them, I'm just not as inclined to seek them out.
  • KarhastKarhast EnorianMember Posts: 87 ✭✭✭
    Yeah, I gotta agree that the chat can be pretty nasty. There's a lot of going off about players who aren't in that Discord, and I've occasionally felt that me being in there might be one of the few reasons my character wasn't kicked from some organisations in the first place. I sincerely hope that the people who feel bad or even quit about it know that they're not alone, and that there's people out there who get terribly upset by the idea of that happening; I think people really shouldn't be admonished and talked down to because of what happens IC, and that the Discord can definitely take it too far rather often.
    ZailaSeirAry
  • TozToz Member Posts: 2,393 ✭✭✭✭✭
    It's the same issue as there was with old IRC, as I understand it, and it's why we have a darkie discord too. We're not paragon of chill ourselves but a lot of us felt unwelcome or out of place in the 'main' one, and rather than going it alone we just all chill together. Things get toxic from time to time but I'm a firm believer that venting is needed - and I place the blame for the community fragmenting so badly at least partially on the forums.

    Back in the day if I had an issue with @Daskalos I could post about it in rants and it'd devolve for a day or two of us slinging insults, then it was over. That's not ideal, but both sides were represented. Now, it's 'x is y' and it's behind their back so only one side of the story gets told, feeding into the divide.

    That isn't to say it was perfect before either - in 2010 I had a lot of people in the Duiran leadership clique telling me about how darkies don't RP, how they just grief, how awful they are, etc. And then I joined and...It's the same. Maybe some more pk, but the RP quality and stuff is just as good.

    To close, I tried making things less toxic and it's not a winnable battle. Neither side likes the other, and frankly I'm burned enough I don't care. I'm staying darkie, I'm going to issue if pk rules get broken, and I'm not going out of my way to play civil or nice because trying is a waste of my time for only negative results. I don't think this gets fixed, and I do think this is what winds up killing Aetolia.
    /Doomandgloom

    Arbre-Today at 7:27 PM

    You're a vindictive lil unicorn
    ---------------------------

    Lartus-Today at 7:16 PM

    oh wait, toz is famous
    ---------------------------

    Karhast-Today at 7:01 PM

    You're a singularity of unicorns awfulness Toz
    FyrrenDidi
  • SeirSeir Seein' All the Things Getting high off your emotionMember Posts: 983 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Toz said:

    It's the same issue as there was with old IRC, as I understand it, and it's why we have a darkie discord too. We're not paragon of chill ourselves but a lot of us felt unwelcome or out of place in the 'main' one, and rather than going it alone we just all chill together. Things get toxic from time to time but I'm a firm believer that venting is needed - and I place the blame for the community fragmenting so badly at least partially on the forums.

    Back in the day if I had an issue with @Daskalos I could post about it in rants and it'd devolve for a day or two of us slinging insults, then it was over. That's not ideal, but both sides were represented. Now, it's 'x is y' and it's behind their back so only one side of the story gets told, feeding into the divide.

    That isn't to say it was perfect before either - in 2010 I had a lot of people in the Duiran leadership clique telling me about how darkies don't RP, how they just grief, how awful they are, etc. And then I joined and...It's the same. Maybe some more pk, but the RP quality and stuff is just as good.

    To close, I tried making things less toxic and it's not a winnable battle. Neither side likes the other, and frankly I'm burned enough I don't care. I'm staying darkie, I'm going to issue if pk rules get broken, and I'm not going out of my way to play civil or nice because trying is a waste of my time for only negative results. I don't think this gets fixed, and I do think this is what winds up killing Aetolia.
    /Doomandgloom

    If I'm honest, my best experiences with talking with people outside of the game has been one-on-one with Skype, AIM, or what have you. I feel like when these larger mediums start pooling people together, they inevitably begin the descent into unpleasantness. Whether this is due to a hive mind mentality or something else, I have no idea honestly. I can, and do, talk with a number of Shadow folks via external sources and I've never had an unpleasant convo.
  • TeaniTeani Evening Sky SwedenMember Posts: 1,989 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I think people in general have sort of a responsibility to ensure they learn both sides of a story before passing judgment. If someone is trashing someone else OOCly, don't take it as absolute truth. If you don't care, then don't bother with it, but don't continue spreading one side of a story without checking to see if there's some other reasons behind certain actions.

    Another thing when it comes to that, I'd rather people tell me if I'm a unicorn. It might make me sad/upset/angry/frustrated at first, but how else am I supposed to learn what I'm doing wrong and fix it?

    When it comes to metagaming, I don't know how many times I've been approached OOCly about happenings in the game. Most of the times I'll simply tell them to hold off, so I can experience it ICly, where it belongs. There's been -a lot- of that going on lately, because I've missed a bunch of things in the game because if RL. It's important to remember that your character does not know what you know, and to act accordingly, even if you were told something by a friend 2 minutes ago on Discord. It can be difficult to keep that separation, but it makes for a better gaming experience.



  • XavinXavin Member Posts: 1,448 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I feel like it's the clustering of people in ooc mediums (clans, or out-of-game services) that tends to have a bad effect, since people will build off one-another. So things end up escalating when multiple people are going off on an individual, organization, or event.

  • EliadonEliadon Somewhere Over the RainbowMember Posts: 134 ✭✭✭
    One of the reasons why I argue with people: insulting people behind their back isn't cool and I generally do my best to go 'stop that unicorns' if I'm paying attention. Things like: these players you're insulting are people, too, and probably are generally no worse than you are in a lot of ways.

    Granted, I'm no innocent butterfly: I will discuss what people do in PK (i.e. Corvo just tries to bash you to death, Fezzix does a lot of hit and run to build hypno and it can be annoying, almost every venom user on both sides of the spectrum use static stacks and do not adapt based on what affs are on the target), but that's 99.9% factual on my end. Aside from jokes about @Trikal, but he's there to defend himself. ;)
    SeirCordia
  • LinLin SMASHER/DEVOURER MASCHINEKLASTMember Posts: 1,569 mod
    edited April 2017
    I can't say anything that hasn't been said better, here. As the person who runs the main Discord, I am pretty much constantly paranoid of the old "IRC Mafia" behavior, and I've striven (is that a word?) to avoid that environment. Frequently, usually even daily, I fail on that regard - but then, I'm only one person, and I don't believe in censorship. The most I can do is blow my referee whistle and tell everyone to move on.

    I'm guilty of it, myself. It takes a certain maturity to look at your behavior, go "this is a problem", and put a stop to it. I'm sorry things got out of hand and I'm sorry that it made you feel you should leave, @Seir. And I'm sorry that the shadow-side players didn't feel welcome. It wasn't my intention to make a "spirit" Discord, but I understand how one could feel out of place when every discussion is Duiran this, Enorian that.

    It goes without saying that everyone is welcome on my server. If someone is engaging in toxic behavior, please, for the love of god, call them out on it. Call me out on it. Send me a PM if you don't feel comfortable doing that. I'm not going to get rid of you. And let's all work toward being better friends with one another.
    SeirKodazaRunasAry
  • SeirSeir Seein' All the Things Getting high off your emotionMember Posts: 983 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Lin said:

    I can't say anything that hasn't been said better, here. As the person who runs the main Discord, I am pretty much constantly paranoid of the old "IRC Mafia" behavior, and I've striven (is that a word?) to avoid that environment. Frequently, usually even daily, I fail on that regard - but then, I'm only one person, and I don't believe in censorship. The most I can do is blow my referee whistle and tell everyone to move on.

    I'm guilty of it, myself. It takes a certain maturity to look at your behavior, go "this is a problem", and put a stop to it. I'm sorry things got out of hand and I'm sorry that it made you feel you should leave, @Seir. And I'm sorry that the shadow-side players didn't feel welcome. It wasn't my intention to make a "spirit" Discord, but I understand how one could feel out of place when every discussion is Duiran this, Enorian that.

    It goes without saying that everyone is welcome on my server. If someone is engaging in toxic behavior, please, for the love of god, call them out on it. Call me out on it. Send me a PM if you don't feel comfortable doing that. I'm not going to get rid of you. And let's all work toward being better friends with one another.

    My issue is that I don't want to be "that person" who calls people out for meta. I've done it myself without realizing sometimes too and I don't think it's an issue with the Discord at large, but I see many convos on Aetolia General that drift into this territory. I'm paranoid, just as you are, regarding the IRC Mafia behavior. I still don't have positive opinions on quite a few people involved with it back in the day either.

    I may give the Discord another shot, but I'm hoping it chills a bit in terms of the people bashing and metagame.
    Tenshyo
  • NyrusNyrus Member Posts: 3
    I think one thing to keep in mind here is just how small of a playerbase we're working with. For the most part, everybody knows at least something about a good 90% of active players. In many cases, these folks turn out to be RL friends and whatnot too.

    I've never been in the discord group before, but I've certainly heard about the insults from people within it across various characters I've played.

    It's good to remember that when you're working with such a small group of people, the people that are being talked badly about are more than likely going to hear it at some point. What does it really get you in the end?
    SeirCordia
  • JaymiJaymi Member Posts: 78 ✭✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Seir said:

    If you're shy, that's something you have to get past and you have to put yourself out there if you want people to interact with you. Just sitting in a room somewhere hoping that someone will come interact with you or let you be part of their character's story isn't going to get you anywhere. You need to be the one who initiates, reaches out, and starts that cycle. You get what you give. However, if someone else makes that effort with you, you should at the very least acknowledge it and feel grateful that they want to get involved or know you.

    I play a -super- shy character who is pretty much holding on entirely by willpower. I still love going out and meeting people and even though it stretches the IC character a bit, I love playing with new people! Nearly all of my character is about how she interacts with people and her inability to do so. I can be a bit shy myself, but that's the beauty of MUDs, being shy IRL doesn't mean you can't stumble into people (either by accident or seeing someone interesting on WHO and stalking them as soon as they leave their city... (Hi @Sessizlik!))
    Seir said:

    Even now, this is happening, as many Duiran players have left for Enorian and the Illuminai, purely because they've involved one another, there is no perceived elitism/exclusiveness, and people feel motivated to get involved

    I was one of these people. I left like... 75% because the sentinels were just a bad fit for Jaymi in a lot of ways, though I love that I went there because I met a lot of wonderful people and got totally into exploring (top 15, woot! Not bad for a newbie.) because of the guild and I'll always have fond memories of my time there. That said, the other 25% was because it felt that the guild and city sorta didn't care from both and IC and OOC sense. I'd track down leaders and try and talk to them and either be ignored entirely or people would run off on me as soon as I said hi. I get it, some people are busy, but if every time I walk into someone, say hello, they say hi and leave, and this happens about 10 times, I'm going to get discouraged about whether they want to play with me. If someone doesn't want to play with me, why would I want to keep putting myself out there with them?
    Seir said:

    organziing IC stuff OOCly

    I think, from my experience in other MUDs, this isn't -always- a bad thing. If it's used sparingly, some really great things can be made between people for character growth and to create an interesting spectacle for other players. That said, instead of pairing up with an OOC/IC buddy you already have to do these, find someone IC, play with them a bit, tell them a problem you're having, a thing you want to do, and if they're game, set up a bit of one-on-one OOC to set some details firmly in place so you have a good idea where you both are with it, then execute IC so both parties are surprised with the actual outcome! If used sparingly and done in certain ways, it can be really rewarding for everyone!

    In essence, I agree with everything Seir's said, and I know a lot of these issues are things I've heard in my 2 IC years playing -a lot- from a lot of people. It's nice to hear someone talk about it and I hope it helps everyone realise how this all could be.

    KodazaVyxsis
  • VyxsisVyxsis VyxsisMember Posts: 375 ✭✭✭
    hey seir, i'm glad you're saying this. i won't get into my full spiel as it's likely not helpful and many have heard it already. i'd just like to support some of the above by noting: i'm a first-time mudder - vyx my first character (other than one i only played through the intro and have since deleted) - and there were a bunch of times prior to moving to the illuminai that i very nearly just quit. that would've been a bummer for me, and i like to think there are a few others who'd be sad to see vyx go. so... i hope folks do take this seriously. not for me, really - i'm in a good place now - but for others who might feel pushed out and give up more easily.

    cheers again.
    Indoran'i is back baby. It's good again. Awoouu (wolf Howl)
    An Atzob cultist says, "Is a shamatato as tasty as a potato?"
    (Tells): From afar, Mephistoles hisses harshly to you, "Hey baby, show me your ovipositor?"
    (Research): Cariv says, "Itsa me, Buggio."




    Kodaza
  • KodazaKodaza Los AngelesMember Posts: 112 ✭✭✭
    One further issue that comes up with something like Discord, as an "always on" chat with persistent history and a search feature, is just that different people are on at different times. And even the same people act a little differently depending on the current group. So the Discord community feels one way at 4 am when the only people on are me, @Phoenecia and @Dzekk and then a completely different way at 4pm when it's a different set of folks. No one's toxic 24/7, but certain combinations of circumstances will start drawing out the toxic elements throughout the day.

    I'll share my own experience at the periphery of this: I do feel I've found a modicum more acceptance since joining the Discord, and I like that it's made me feel closer to people I was already roleplaying with like Phoe and @Nola as well as folks I had never met before like @Seir himself. So I guess it's sort of like being in a "club," but I would push back against calling it elite, because I didn't do anything except hitting the "Join Channel" button and saying 'sup. People just accepted me there.

    But recent events have made the whole player base more heated in upheaval, and tempers feel shorter than they used to be. My natural inclination is to believe this is cyclical, though, and that seems verified by the past examples in this thread.

    Not that everything in my experience is the Bloom's fault anyways. Even before that, the Discord can be very harsh to people who aren't there -- and I've heard from quite a few people there, over and over again, "Oh, I thought Kodaza was just some kind of slut, but now that we're talking OOC it turns out that you're actually really cool." Which is a compliment and one I appreciate, but I know the sorts of things I've seen Discord say about people not in the channel. I also know that I've people kind of naturally give extra chances to people they communicate more with, as @Karhast alluded to above -- I don't want this to sound snarky, but I think most of us know that if someone not in the Discord channel had spread the Bloom to every room in Duiran, the punishment from the council would likely have been more severe than it was. Instead it became a meme.

    So with those thoughts in mind, I can't help but wonder: how did people talk about me in Discord before I joined it, before my presence there encouraged them (however subconsciously) not to judge me as fast as they might have? That's a gloomy cloud that kind of hovers over everything there, for me.

    LinDrestyn
  • SeirSeir Seein' All the Things Getting high off your emotionMember Posts: 983 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Jaymi said:


    I think, from my experience in other MUDs, this isn't -always- a bad thing. If it's used sparingly, some really great things can be made between people for character growth and to create an interesting spectacle for other players. That said, instead of pairing up with an OOC/IC buddy you already have to do these, find someone IC, play with them a bit, tell them a problem you're having, a thing you want to do, and if they're game, set up a bit of one-on-one OOC to set some details firmly in place so you have a good idea where you both are with it, then execute IC so both parties are surprised with the actual outcome! If used sparingly and done in certain ways, it can be really rewarding for everyone!

    It's not used sparingly, or wasn't. I've seen instances of people forcing RP, knowing things their character shouldn't know, people talking crap and letting that mentality leak from OOC to IC. The #NoT IRC was fairly notorious for this back in the day, but I'm not going to cite specific incidents and keep it generalized because it would name people (against forum rules, plus a dick thing to do).

    Edit: I will say that there are people from the IRC Mafia that I'm otherwise civil to, but don't really trust and in some cases, never really forgave for the abrasive behavior. That number is very small though. However, that should give you an idea as to how bad it was and why I'm afraid for something like that to happen again, because I'm a very laid back person for the most part.
  • IllidanIllidan Pray AreaMember Posts: 1,000 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I dunno if anyone noticed but I left the Aetolian discord months ago and i'm going to be completely honest as to why. I want to preface this by saying I'm not making any personal attacks towards anyone, it's just genuinely how I feel.

    I feel that a good number of the people that were in the discord were completely fake. I've seen some act one way around one set of people, then act completely different when 1 other person comes around or when they're around different people. I've never been jealous or envious of cliques, if you will, but they have always disturbed me when they were in places of power. Sometimes its subtle, sometimes it's so blatant to the point that when person A becomes a God, they change their tenets to make absolutely no sense just so they can preside over the org in which their buddies are mostly clustered in and causes longstanding members of that order to become disgusted and leave. We've seen cliques of people straight up coup and metagame to take over organizations via rolling characters and playing just to vote and never be seen again.

    But I also have another admission - I at one point was guilty of this. During the era of Sibatti and co running Duiran, I'd rolled an alt to go back to playing in Duiran since Illidan was in Enorian at the time and Duiran was much less rage inducing. The other character I made was approached at that time and was basically told to run for Ben (the last spot) and I'd win because they'd all vote for me and have other people vote for me. The only reason they wanted me is because they felt that I wouldn't go against their wishes and do what I was told. And that's exactly what happened. Now don't get me wrong it wasn't like some dark contract that was like "Do what we say or we'll kick you out. We own you now." sorta thing. Still, now that I think about it, it's extremely scary in retrospect just how much power a clique can have, especially when they run an org. I've never wanted a position of power be it guildmaster, secretary, cityhead, orderhead, anything. I've always let the politicians do the politicking and I just stuck to PK. Still, I can only imagine what it would be like for a person that didn't get along with them - how intimidated they would be and how much the odds would be stacked against them if they even thought about challenging it.

    Outside of that, i've always avoided the cliques. I've never wanted to be part of one, nor will I ever. I just handpick out the Aetolians who I feel are just real unicorns people and just don't bother with the ones that I feel are cliqued up and or just really fake. I have a discord channel in which various people come to play all sorts of games in, some aetolians, plenty of non aetolians, and I go out of my way to make sure nobody feels left out (which isn't really all that hard to do.) When we're playing things like League Guildwars 2, Overwatch, etc. and someone wants to jump in, I'll sit out just to give them a chance to play. It's still fun for me because most of the time it's League and I'm coaching my group on how to climb from bronze to gold. Even then, if that's not the case i'll offer to play a different game or start a separate match with them to make sure they don't feel lonely or left out. There's never any drama. Everyone always has a good time. Even when @Trikal has a 10% skillshot accuracy rate and has the nerve to call me a boosted bonobo.
                                    
                 Faaaaaaaaaaabulous!                                          Adorable!                                                               UHMAYZING!

    Calipso has been slain by the divine might of Razmael, the Synthesist.
    Leana
  • SeirSeir Seein' All the Things Getting high off your emotionMember Posts: 983 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Xenia said:

    I didn't get through the entire post cus it was long and there's no TDR. However, my two cents is a lot of people have a tendency to not handle things IC which should be handled there. Most recently I dealt with this when Iosyne's order had a conflict with Omei's order. My initial contact with this conflict was through information sent to me OOC and I consistently found myself having to preface IC actions by reminding people to handle it IC. It was very annoying.

    Following this, I then had to listen to OOC appeals against IC actions, without any form of IC interaction supporting the OOC requests -- that's kind of unicorns up if you ask me.

    By all means, let's preach against this form of OOC, but let's also be sure to follow through and actually practice it ourselves if it's going to be brought up.

    Given that this was likely directed at me, I agree that entire situation could've been handled better. I was told via messages by another that you wanted to discuss that situation OOCly (as I came into it late), so that's how I initially pursued it. Otherwise, I'm pretty good about IC/OOC separation.
    Post edited by Seir on
  • XeniaXenia Member Posts: 996 ✭✭✭✭✭
    A prime example of the sort of meta-gaming you're talking about in this post. I am glad to hear you think this sort of thing is a problem and won't be participating in it.

  • TenshyoTenshyo Member Posts: 382 ✭✭✭
    I've heard far, far more negative things about what is said in that Discord than I -ever- have heard positive. I can tell you, I've lost count on the amount of negative remarks about it as a whole.

    Such as some rather nasty and untrue rumors about people.

    Is everyone in this thread guilty of some of the OOC things mentioned? Absolutely. None are without casting a stone in their time.

    But a lot of the things I've heard are just... Vile and blatant lies. Part of the reason why I quit playing five or so years ago. In the same format, same style. Things that are said and how they are said, and who they are said to.

    I am both intensely curious to see just how the Discord is, but I am mortified of what I could find. Whether about myself, my friends, and just people in general. So much so that I actively choose to not engage or even want to join said channel.

    SeirSaritaFyrren
  • JensenJensen Corruption's Butcher Member Posts: 1,821 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Toxicity exists at the participation of the user either passively or actively. Actively participating in "office gossip" about other players, passive is seeing it take place and doing nothing about it. If you want to see these sorts of things stop, participate in your own change and remind yourself not to talk about people you have problems with openly, and do your best to stop others from doing the same.

    TLDR: facilitate your own change, dont start no unicorns there wont be no unicorns
    image
    SibattiSeir
  • SatomiSatomi Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭
    I, for one, never even knew there was an Aetolian Discord, or any form of discord related to this mud... but I still wouldn't have joined it. I don't do facebook because I have no interest in devoting my -valuable- gaming/school/work time to maintaining upkeep on some social media thing.

    That, and I get uncomfortable in large groups of people... and I'm prone to extremely negative outbursts when my frustration peaks. (Sorry web people)

    I do agree about the OOC/IC thing, like pretty much everyone in here. I RP almost exclusively with people I've built some sort of foundation with because it's just easier to prod at them (which is also why I stepped down from Secretary in my guild).

    I'm not opposed to RP with other people, but I am just too focused on other games like HotS, Stellaris, or FFXIV (to name a few) to make the effort.. not that it'd take much.

    It's actually very easy. Satomi is random enough that it wouldn't look odd.

    VyxsisFyrren
  • JensenJensen Corruption's Butcher Member Posts: 1,821 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I don't have a Facebook, but I do enjoy telling stupid stories, posting memes, and blasting the channel with hip-hop on occasion.  Not really upkeep, more of a social break while I'm being anti-social
    image
  • TozToz Member Posts: 2,393 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yknow, on further reflection, this issue can't go away until toxic people are mentioned by name, publically, with logs. The situation turns out just like Duiran, where the admin makes a post saying 'people were toxic' and everyone on all the factions goes 'ahah! I knew our enemies were scum' and then goes right back to doing what they were before.

    Granted, call outs and public shaming is a thing I'm not super into on a conceptual level, and I suspect the admin will take a dim view, but short of nailing someone to the door with this, I'm not sure it'll accomplish anything.

    Arbre-Today at 7:27 PM

    You're a vindictive lil unicorn
    ---------------------------

    Lartus-Today at 7:16 PM

    oh wait, toz is famous
    ---------------------------

    Karhast-Today at 7:01 PM

    You're a singularity of unicorns awfulness Toz
    XavinTeani
  • AyegorAyegor Member Posts: 9
    edited April 2017
    I'm more concerned about the fact that I keep joining webs in order to achieve practical in-game tasks, like showing up at lessers and such, and getting to witness respected players such as Fezzix and Zsadist calling other players "faggots" and "shemales". But maybe that's just me. At least you can theoretically avoid the consequences of an Aetolia Discord getting out of hand (pun intended, I guess).
  • SeirSeir Seein' All the Things Getting high off your emotionMember Posts: 983 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Jensen said:

    Toxicity exists at the participation of the user either passively or actively. Actively participating in "office gossip" about other players, passive is seeing it take place and doing nothing about it. If you want to see these sorts of things stop, participate in your own change and remind yourself not to talk about people you have problems with openly, and do your best to stop others from doing the same.

    TLDR: facilitate your own change, dont start no unicorns there wont be no unicorns

    Unfortunately, this isn't always true. There are some folks who are going to say nasty things of you regardless of the actions you do, either due to spite, jealousy, or some other kind of grudge. This is the sort of behaviour that I'm calling out, in addition to the metagaming. There are also some players, even if you tried to speak to them, would be incapable of accepting: "Hey, maybe I am at fault here and there's ways to improve, or maybe I should apologize, or maybe I should find a way to break my habits." This is either because they won't accept it from the person it's coming from, they believe themselves better than the person it's coming from, and/or they just straight up think they're infallible.

    No one is innocent of metagaming, not even me. To some extent, we've all done it at one point or another, and sometimes it's absolutely unavoidable. However, a lot of scenarios I've seen both on webs, Skype, the Discord, and IRC are people who are organizing RP to every last detail, informing people of details that their character should know not (thus creating 'dirty knowledge' scenarios), or enforcing elements of favoritism on certain people because of their OOC friendships, thus creating a clique or a conflict of interest.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: I loathe cliques and I believe that inclusiveness is how Aetolia survives. The IRC Mafia (#NoT) was one of the most toxic/cliquish/metagamey places I've seen in my 18 years of playing IRE, and even I was guilty of some metagame from there as Illidan and others have pointed out. However, I have been capable of acknowledging how toxic my behavior was, how bad the clique was, and I've endeavoured to prevent something like that from happening again, hence the very reason I made this post to begin with.

    It's true that you should be the change you want to see, but sometimes it's not always you that needs to change (or maybe you HAVE changed), but the people around you need to change or haven't.
    Xavin
  • KalakKalak Member Posts: 274 ✭✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Metagaming pervades every inch of every IRE game with no doubt. But here I shall not post examples full of meta-horrors I experienced, but rather tell about the steps I take to minimize that situation:

    - I strictly keep playing to one character per game which has two advantages: One, it will keep the world and interactions mysterious to me which sparks motivation to explore. If I wish to know about another guild/organization I shall make a pro-active attempt to initiate RP/dialogue/conflict etc. Two, it will keep me from learning other organizations'/characters' true feelings about my one character and I will guarantee that I shall not act upon that knowledge consciously or subconsciously. If someone says "But I can separate IC/OOC on billion characters!" that is true, you can juggle them but you will be doing metagaming at some point on subconscious level, for your perception is tainted by the knowledge of billion characters.

    - As long as it serves a purpose I do not reject OOC interaction or clans, with the condition that no IC knowledge is mentioned within them. Though by experience I try to avoid all-encompassing casual OOC groups (which a populated Discord server may fall into that category) because undoubtedly it may contain someone butthurt and wanting to throw a jab at you. And furthermore it is better to avoid these types of channels absolutely, if you intend to play a villain. Of course by villain here I do not refer to RP villain or common griefer, but someone who actually can attract the ire of certain groups without breaking the rules of the game.

    - Avoiding to provide much knowledge on your character OOCly. Of course for some people "planning RP" is an integral part of their gaming style but on the other hand it means initiating OOC interactions with others for an IC matter. It can marginally blur the line as time goes. For that reason, my assessment is that presenting a RP situation thoroughly IC means should be the way to go. When people you RP'ed jab at you on OOC level, because of your well-planned quarter-dragon, quarter-vampire, quarter-fish, quarter-Scottish transcended Godslayer...you are asking for it. So avoid OOC planning for IC events.

    - And finally, it helps much to keep a cool head, at the end of the day. The game designed in such a way no side can do anything unless Developers wills it so. At worst, actions of someone can put you at a disadvantage within the established system and it is better to adapt to that situation instead of lashing out OOCly. Of course not everyone can discipline themselves in such a way...but I hear breathing deeply could help.
    SeirKarhast
  • RhyotRhyot BloodlochMember Posts: 248 ✭✭✭
    Ayegor said:

    I'm more concerned about the fact that I keep joining webs in order to achieve practical in-game tasks, like showing up at lessers and such, and getting to witness respected players such as Fezzix and Zsadist calling other players "faggots" and "shemales". But maybe that's just me. At least you can theoretically avoid the consequences of an Aetolia Discord getting out of hand (pun intended, I guess).

    @Ayegor I'm not going to sugarcoat this, yes I use highly vulgar language. That's just who I am. And more times than not, I use those terms for very specific people because I know it irritates the crap out of them or when I'm one of my pissed off moods. Am I in the right? Absolutely not! Am I sorry? Not really. Is it acceptable? Nope... and people like @Cordia, @Xenia, and @Toz call me out on it every time too. That said, I don't do it as much as I used to. So there is that.

    Also, I agree with @Toz that people should be called out if they're being a dick or whatever... even stuck up social justice warriors who then proceed to curtail an entire group of people to hate on a specific person or another group of people.

    Back to topic though, I brought up the entire point of cliques and the way the game is played by the players in my own thread. However Seir has a much more well thought way with words (a gift I will never have) and I agree with everything he's said. But I don't think metagaming/cliques/ooc communication for IC events/rp is going to change anytime soon. Cliques are here to stay because people ALLOW them to stay. The problem isn't the cliques themselves, its the powers that the cliques eventually control. These powers then control the way the game is played for specific organizations. And the absolutely worst part of it is that once these cliques get their claws into said organization, its hard to break those claws because. And these cliques start forcing players out who even have a remote chance of removing them from power because they don't want to lose said power.

    I could go on and on.... but I feel that's a respectable place to stop.

  • TozToz Member Posts: 2,393 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Maybe we need ourselves a sewer line Achaea has- think Lusternia has it too. In fact we might be the only IRE game without a rants section on our forums, and so our bitching is behind closed doors and tends to build rather than get a reply/solution/counter-argument. Not like it could make things MORE toxic at this point, anyway. Then you neatly sidestep the accusations of people banned from darkie disco cause I hate their hat, or from lifer for trying to test the lang filter of their bot.

    Arbre-Today at 7:27 PM

    You're a vindictive lil unicorn
    ---------------------------

    Lartus-Today at 7:16 PM

    oh wait, toz is famous
    ---------------------------

    Karhast-Today at 7:01 PM

    You're a singularity of unicorns awfulness Toz
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