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Ideas board and FOIC
Long time coming.

I want to preface this by saying that I'm not trying to preach or condemn anyone. This is merely an attempt at providing a constructive train on thought to help better play the game.

As I said in a recent post and want to further discuss: A good rule of thumb for any Idea post is "If you can hire another player to do it, it's a bad Idea"

The Ideas board should be saved to add to the dynamics already present in the game and align with higher concepts of creating conflict and RP. Often, when people wag the finger or give a -1 to an Idea, it's because the suggestion presented doesn't progress the game toward the ultimate goal of expanding on cooperative competition, the idea isn't themely, it diminishes risk, etc etc.

Which is where FOIC comes into play. It's been a long running trend on the Ideas board for people to present suggestions for changes that ultimately fit their immediate agenda ICly. This will likely never change.

However, when your Idea gets shot down by vets, generally there's some allusions to things already present within the game to solve the problem that the Idea is hoping to alleviate. But, there's a problem. People, in the understandable natural bias towards themselves, kneejerk to defending their ideas more. Which is why I'm writing this.

I implore any player to come up with creative solutions IC and exhaust virtually all options before posting something related to an immediate IC issue. You'll create more RP for yourself and the people around you by doing this and save the Ideas board from becoming more of a battleground for concepts. This goes back toward that natural bias.

People will entrench themselves to push for something and inadvertently turn Ideas into a toxic wasteland while vets refrain from giving how-to guides or extrapolating on intentionally obfuscated mechanics.

This is my attempt, for everyone's sake, to avoid not only butting heads on the forum, but also to create more RP and showcase why FOIC is not only important but good for the game's health.

A thousand times this.

I'm not telling you FOIC to shut you up. I'm not telling you FOIC to flex on you. I'm telling you FOIC because those are the rules and the spirit of the game. If you post something and the vets unanimously don't like it, consider going IC to learn what they know and then later decide if your idea is still as good as you thought.

+1
I'm just going to comment that I constantly get the impression vets, such as OP and the first two posters to this thread, don't care about very much besides maintaining some theoretical status quo within the game. That might not be the case, but with the constantly consistent remarks to so many idea threads, it always gives at least the vague impression of this. Might not be true, but after being here for two+ years I feel like I can say this.

I am always reluctant to contribute to this community because people who approach it with new ideas or suggestions always in one way or another just get thrashed and trashed by 'the vets.' What I consider to be decent ideas for cutting out huge trivialities and honestly boring things in the game are consistently torn apart under the premise of 'there are reasons its this way, find out.'

Using the most recent 'tire chalk' thread as an example, it makes perfect sense to me in this world that this would be happening all the time for a variety of reasons, at the very least in Red. In a sector that's deprived of the best technology, poor, and riddled with crime... this just makes so much sense. It's a low-tech, simple solution to aiding crime.

So to see it shut down under the premise of hiring someone to stand around and do nothing for an indeterminate amount of hours, possibly days, to confirm something is BETTER THAN doing something super simple, walking away, and getting involved in more interesting things is just mind boggling. It's like setting up RP for a later date instead of just waiting around for it to (hopefully) happen. The owner of the car could wonder, who the fuck put this chalk on my tire? Is someone scoping me out? They could get super paranoid about it and react to it in numerous ways.

Do I even need to go on with this point? I feel like it's super short-sighted to just dismiss something like this. I'm not even going to get into the specifics of how it is far easier for veteran, more experienced and long-lived characters to watch a vehicle. Meanwhile you casually dismiss what I consider to be a novel idea in allowing fresher, not so rooted characters to have an ability to do the same thing.. whilst ALSO giving those vets another tool for their already expansive toolkit. Like, why the fuck not?

Hiring another person to do the most boring shit I can think of isn't generating good RP. Potentially making someone paranoid as fuck about why chalk is on their tire is better IMO. But who cares right? Surely vets would know where to put their cars so this doesn't happen to them, I know I do.

You might feel the reward for investing hours into doing something boring, tedious, and overall uninteresting reaps a much larger benefit for something so trivial. I do not. So just because 'the vets' disagree with something, which more than often ends up sounding more like an echo chamber than anything collaborative-- doesn't mean an idea should inherently be discredited.

I feel like your attitudes towards treating other players and their ideas when they try to contribute to this game, more than often leads them to being pushed away by the community they tried to embrace.

Kinda went on some tangents, but my point remains the same. Hiring other people to do shit is a great way to generate RP for everybody. But it is definitely not the answer for everything. Especially when it comes to extremely tedious and boring tasks that are not fun for anybody.

I absolutely, 100%, categorically agree and support this post, the advice it provides, the cautions it urges, the IC directions it advises -- all of it. I'd love to see it cleared / paraphrased by staff and somehow stickied on the ideas forum and/or included in the @wow tip rotation links.

However.

Speaking as a vet...I think some vets here feel way too entitled to police ideas and suggestions, and are way too quick to just dump on a thread, no matter how many times staff post to say that all posts are valid and deserve discussion, even if suggested and shut down before because the game changes over time, etc.

We vets aren't staff, it's not our place to act like it. If a post is broaching FOIC and someone is just clearly fishing for IC info, or even if they're not doing it intentionally (remember Slither's advice, err on best intentions and good faith when possible) and just don't know what they don't know or might be running around of, you can xhelp or email [email protected] and let staff read the post and take it from there. Getting into it in the thread is just a cascading effect that exacerbates the problem and devolves things.

Vets are a resource of experience and knowledge that absolutely should try to offer their more informed input (without sharing IC info) on suggestions politely and constructively (exactly like this post, which is so excellent!) but we aren't staff, we aren't entitled to dunk on people's threads, regardless of what we think our names and posts don't actually carry more weight than a day one newbie. If an idea in a thread is bad and you're like 'Fuck this is awful, it'd be a bad change, I know for a fact it'd never happen, that person is just super new and knows nothing.' You can just move on with your day. The idea isn't going to get implemented because you didn't VET FLEX on them hard enough and call in the meme squad. Most likely other people will post anyway, vets or not, or a staff member will after the post has marinated a little, explaining courteously why the idea stinks on ice, or the idea will just get no discussion and disappear as other posts bury it, which is feedback of a kind.

I hope it was clear I wasn't saying 'you' to HC or anyone at all specifically, it was a broad you, including to myself, because my forum conduct is obv not flawless.

This is great advice for anyone even thinking of posting on the ideas forum, but no, we don't need people intimidated by this arbitrary 'vet' echelon of players, whether some are admin alts or have been staff at some point in the past (hi).

"Using the most recent 'tire chalk' thread as an example, it makes perfect sense to me in this world that this would be happening all the time for a variety of reasons, at the very least in Red. In a sector that's deprived of the best technology, poor, and riddled with crime... this just makes so much sense. It's a low-tech, simple solution to aiding crime."

"I feel like it's super short-sighted to just dismiss something like this."

Far far from. With the former, it goes hand in hand with why brass knuckles are 26k. Yes, it makes rational sense that a tool like that should be cheaper, but it's artificially inflated to create fabricated nuisances. The same with why you need to go buy a letter instead of jotting a number down on a napkin that would theoretically be readily available in a bar.

There are things that I, and many others, take into account already. This is what we mean by vets. Not that we have a quantifiable amount of time under our belts, but that we understand the thought process going behind decisions.

Try to understand we're not advocating for a status quo. We're advocating for themes that have been laid out for two decades and keeping things on the track that's worked for that long. The root of the game, why we love it, is because of the "due north" that may come across as status quo.

I hope this also alleviates some of the concerns brought up by Jameson.

Entirely agree with Jameson -- sometimes 'veteran' advice is very sound indeed, sometimes it amounts to little more than 'it's always been this way' or 'we did it this way so you have to too' or 'I've got mine'. Institutional inertia is well-documented phenomenon, and it almost always behoves the establishment for the status quo to reign.

An older generation resistant to the ideas and impulses and desires of the new, and a younger generation often unwilling to heed the hard lessons learned by the prior, are both cliches for a reason.

I just like to engage on ideas Relating to things I have experience with on Sindome. Things I do not, I do not even comment on. I sometimes get carried away with jokes but I'm not trying to maintain any status quo. If you've ever heard my rants about some things you would probably know this.

I agree with the OP.

I agree with Jameson.

I think we could all try a little harder to brush up our bgbb behavior. I think a lot of intent and tone is lost in text as opposed to voice.

Trakel I'm afraid you're misinformed. We vets frequently post our own ideas or post in support of existing ones. The recent drug changes for instance came largely from our feedback and input.

There's no desire to cling to this mythical status quo people keep talking about, we just have enough experience to know the difference between a bad idea and a good one.

Thanks for writing this. This is a really good rule of thumb and lense through which to view the game.

I haven't even been playing here for a year yet, but within a couple of months it very quickly became apparent to me that anything "cool" I wanted to do was too big for my character to handle by themself. That dynamic, that "need" to rely on other characters really is where this game thrives. It thrives on relationships and making the game about more than a single character.

It absolutely is human nature to be as self sufficient as possible. That is even more so in an environment like Withmore where paranoia is par for the course. But playing the game in isolation does nothing to make it more engaging and dynamic for other players. This is something I struggle with as a player because I am extremely risk adverse. But I have begun to realize that as I take more risks, calculated risks, that the reward is worth it.

I have zero doubt about where those feelings come from, and I think it's a good place. :)

But my whole point/concern was that...there's a fine line between offering polite feedback on a posted idea, using the benefit of experience, including your personal subjective take on the state of the game, which has changed over 20 years a lot, and rhetorically using the weight of vet-dom to basically bully people, which some vets do, because they feel entitled to do so, even if the reason they do is because they feel a very noble (I'm not using that word sarcastically) desire to safeguard the game's theme. Like anyone else, they can offer feedback that does so without invoking their time in the game or their experience with certain system like clubs. It's incredibly toxic, it makes people defensive, it makes people feel unwelcome, all things SD already battles a troubling reputation for.

The only people who will 'keep it on track', truly, are staff. And even then, I'd argue senior staff. Even then, maybe, just Johnny and Slither. It's their world, the rest of us just play in it.

With all due respect, you have the experience to know what is a good idea from your perspective, and what is a bad idea from your perspective. Not anyone else's.

The vibe I get from MANY ideas replies is 'this would not benefit me in the way that -I- RP, and thus it has no place in this game'.

The perception of 'status quo maintenance' that many players see has root somewhere. Even if it's not wholly supported by your intentions, there is very much a feeling of it.

Sindome has a steep learning curve, and many of the tools that exist in the game to perform certain actions are out of reach for newer players. Why should someone have to 'play' a game for months before they can actually participate in the game? The introduction of cheaper but less effective tools to accomplish tasks that would be performed by 'waiting around' or 'hiring someone with that skill' doesn't hurt the game, it creates variety and includes newer players. Yes, balance must be addressed, but again, these cheaper tools might lack specificity in their abilities, or not perform them as effectively.

At the end of the day, giving players the tools to RP creatively instead of inside of a rigid framework is a desirable goal. But that's just my opinion I guess.

"Sindome has a steep learning curve, and many of the tools that exist in the game to perform certain actions are out of reach for newer players. Why should someone have to 'play' a game for months before they can actually participate in the game? "

SD is categorically a longterm game with longterm goals. If things are out of reach, then it's to give you something to work toward.

To provide you with some advice as well as the previous criticism, work under people who have those resources or work to seek them out so you can learn their application and alternatives, rather than seeing an item you can't get yet as the only solution to your problem.
Try to understand we're not advocating for a status quo. We're advocating for themes that have been laid out for two decades and keeping things on the track that's worked for that long. The root of the game, why we love it, is because of the "due north" that may come across as status quo.

I think it's a little idealistic to suggest there's never self-interested guardedness, or fear of change, or attachment to ideas that may actually be harmful to the game. Players are often just as ignorant as game developers as to the mechanisms of what makes something fun, and there's definitely a strong undercurrent of 'SD is fun because X', for any given value of X, with often little to support it besides 'SD is fun and SD has X, therefore X makes SD fun'.

What one person sees as teaching, another person sees as belittling or patronizing. You have one set of people who aren't receptive because they know the game too well, another set of people who aren't receptive because they don't know the game well enough.

The two things I see that spur conflict:

1. Veterans who come down too hard/dismissively out of frustration or bluntness.

2. Newer players who continue arguing even as the people who disagree enter the double digits.

If you state your point concisely at the outset and are clear about what you want, and no one agrees, all arguing with every person who isn't on board accomplishes is ballooning thread lengths and wearing out people's receptivity.

HolyChrome,

I get what you're saying, but I feel like it is a narrow perspective. You've been here a long time, and have those years of experience to draw on. What I feel like you may have lost sight of is the black hole that exists between two weeks and two months of play time, where you've learned enough about the game to be comfortable trying stuff, but you don't have the actual resources to do anything but log in, run crates, and log out (Hyperbole, sue me).

Low tier tools that can be bought or even disposable GIVEN to new player minions should absolutely exist. Having these available can only expand what new players can do when they haven't had enough of a chance to build their character up to the point that they can even use skills effectively.

You're getting the incorrect read.

Look, I know this game better than you. I just do. I have played balls to the wall for years and done deep dives on every system we have but the Grid. I have held high positions in multiple big time factions. I have stolen millions of chy and snapped dozens and dozens of necks I had no business snapping. I speak from experience and that's not bragging, I've just been here a long time playing big shot characters who make things happen.

Same goes for many of the other vets. I don't always agree with Griz but he knows what he is talking about better than me in most cases. If I post an idea about something and he says his experience tells him it's bad, I don't take that personally or demand that he break the rules to explain why he thinks this. I'm capable of hearing him and extending a measure of trust that he knows what he is about and is speaking in good faith.

So chill out a bit eh?

RSB, I remember, very vividly actually, how utterly clueless and lost I felt, not only trying to grasp things but also facing seemingly insurmountable odds. Also why I try to preach RP/FOIC as I clearly recall instances where things finally clicked through RP, either by having something explained, uncovering a secret, or having ideas link up in my mind to form a creative solution.

I know it sucks. But goddamn, does breaking free of the suck feel good.

HolyChrome,

So why is it so important that cheap but less effective and disposable tools don't exist? Why does the suck have to be so long and arduous that breaking free of it is orgasmic (hyperbole, sorry!)?

Back to what I said about the game being long term.

Sindome thrives on carrots on a stick. Cyberpunk in general does. Whether you're an immy trying to get their kit together or a corpie trying to get a raise.

Things out of reach create struggle, and trying to get there means other people in the way, and that means conflict, which means RP.

Look, I know this game better than you. I just do. I have played balls to the wall for years and done deep dives on every system we have but the Grid. I have held high positions in multiple big time factions. I have stolen millions of chy and snapped dozens and dozens of necks I had no business snapping. I speak from experience and that's not bragging, I've just been here a long time playing big shot characters who make things happen.

Vera, I think this is the attitude that turns new players off.

It turns old players off too.
I think you are confounding 'the grind' with 'enjoyable gameplay'. In order for 'the grind' to be enjoyable, there has to be a candy trail of rewards along the way, but it is my perception that a void exists where there is simply nothing. Cheap disposable tools would do a lot to fill this void and encourage older players to interact with newer ones (GASP!).

You want your rival to know you've found out where they live? Hire an immy, give them a cheap disposable tool, and send them on their way. Etc. etc.

It's just a fact though. I'm explaining that I didn't just sit around for 3 years and decide I knew best, I'm talking about where this experience comes from and how to get it.
Vera,

I'm just gonna be frank with you here. This is my own opinion, but most of the time when I see your posts on the board they're very dismissive and honestly coming across as someone who sits on a pedestal. A lot of the reason why I get these opinions is because of how you communicate on the board. Maybe you're joking? Maybe not? How am I to know?

I'd just ask that when you make a post on the board you do so with more constructive collaboration in mind instead of just dismissing anyone who's idea isn't 'on par with what you think is par.'

You've done the same thing in making assumptions about where I'm coming from and why I'm mashing the FOIC button all the time. I'm not being an elitist, I'm telling people the joy of the game is in getting there.
As a rule, you'll generally rarely find "cheap" tools in the game. I can barely think of any examples myself.

The abilities from things you can buy are carefully priced by staff already.

You've done the same thing in making assumptions about where I'm coming from and why I'm mashing the FOIC button all the time. I'm not being an elitist, I'm telling people the joy of the game is in getting there.
I have played for nearly as long as you, and I understand where you're coming from but I wholly disagree with your approach. I don't think mashing the FOIC button all the time is the right solution to a problem that continually happens.
But it is, because eventually new players grok it and chill out on the bad suggestions as they discover that they are redundant or counter to existing design.
HolyChrome,

I know. And what I am asking for is for those entry level items to be available. I know they aren't right now, but a way for new players to get a call on sic of 'I need a runner', show up at a bar, get handed a one-use item and told to go do a thing.

What's wrong with that? Sure the intel isn't as good, but you're putting a new character out there, getting them involved in major plots from almost the get go. It introduces variety instead of 'bring me a pizza...again.'

Vera do you really think that was a helpful contribution to make to a rather magnanimous and thoughtful post? Argument from authority by way of meta-bragging you've seen and done it all? Like this is something SD is sort of infamous for doing, and I don't think it's helpful to reinforce that. Players are not the guardians of SD's 'essence', and the GMs don't need us to police what people want, or do, or think.
@RSB:

Maybe the real issue is that people aren't hiring runners enough to do things? Maybe that could be solved by the runners in question learning how to play the game and market their services better and more people outsourcing things they need done?

@Vera:

I totally get where you're coming from and I typically agree with your opinions, I'm just saying that to a newbie the tone sounds like exactly what they're complaining about, that their ideas are being automatically invalidated because they're inexperienced.

The from/why doesn't matter if the how makes people feel like garbage, Vera.

When people are made to feel that way, the don't stick around. Even vets with a lot of bravado will kick bricks and take long breaks from the game when someone makes them feel that way, remember?

And almost every post you make on the Ideas forums can be boiled down to 'You haven't been playing SD like a god like me for 3 years so your thoughts don't matter', which is literally what elitist means.

Players and staff who have been here longer / done more / blah blah don't feel the need to do this in that way. Ideas have merits: good, poor, none. They can be discussed on them. If they can't be discussed on them because of their content because of FOIC, that can be said in one polite sentence and the thread is over. It's not difficult.

I don't think you understand that immies/cheap disposable tools aren't there because they go against the game.

When you come to the city you don't have stats skills or connections. As times passes you grow, gain UE, make connections and make chy and get access to tools that you need to do what you need.

Immigrants aren't supposed to occupy the position of an secure tech or electro tech or a decker or a brawler. They're used for jobs that the game NEEDS immigrants for. Crates, running, low level stuff. Players that occupy a big shot role NEED these immigrants for said work.

Immigrants fill a specific niche. They aren't supposed to fill in other niches with disposable tools or cheap shortcuts.

Also, Vera might be blunt but she's not exactly lying. Sure it's blunt and it might offend you but sometimes the truth is harsh.

Players that occupy a big shot role NEED these immigrants for said work.

I'm actually not even sure what this means and it sort of does sound like a status quo defense.

Immigrants just come into the game with nothing and, if they're a new player, knowing nothing. Withmore is a harsh place. Finding ways to make yourself valuable to other people who have more than you without being completely taken advantage for (hopefully) mutual benefit is the purpose of the game. This remains the purpose at basically every level, except that as you gain more, you start outsourcing to other people.

It's supposed to be very hard at the beginning. That's the theme. The way to solve the problem is by RPing with other people, making connections, etc.

@Ranger, Vera,

It takes skill to deliver a harsh truth in a way that does not turn people off.

Sometimes being right does not make a person any less of an abrasive asshole.

Not talking about anyone specifically. Just a general observation on communication styles across the entire spectrum of people.

I'm still working on it myself. I've almost lost a couple of jobs because of the terse, dismissive way that I used to communicate with people. I'm still far from perfect, or even worth modeling when it comes to this most of the time.

@crooknose

I agree it should be ICly hard, but again, there's no reason the actual player of the character should have to suffer through a long slog with no variety. Just a sliver of different things that immy runners can do, yeah?

Crook it's supposed to mean that characters with connections and those that occupy player GM roles need immigrants to operate as they fill a special beginner role in the game. I don't know how that's about anything like a status quo.
Sure it's blunt and it might offend you but sometimes the truth is harsh.

Being right isn't the only thing that matters in terms of attracting and maintaining a healthy and growing player-base. You have to cater to and communicate effectively with an audience beyond the privileged inner cadre at some point otherwise things stagnate and contract to eventual nothingness.

There is absolutely a small group of long-time skilled players who, if they were allowed to, would make the game all but entirely inaccessible to the point that there would no longer be any audience for it, because it's become trivial for them. While I agree with HolyChrome in many respects, I don't think this topic should serve as a platform to talk down to new players from positions of self-assumed authority.

If you're feeling hurt or offended because I said I probably know more about a video game than you then I'm really not sure what to tell you. I am trying to be as patient as possible in explaining that not all opinions are informed by the same level of experience.
I feel like a lot of this perception comes from some people feeling the need to qualify their opinion as superior and informed by opening every post with 'I've been here for three years and played every archetype from beginning to end.' and only then moving on to attempt to shut the idea down by either saying simply '-1' or 'this already exists' or 'this wouldn't work because theme'.

At no point in those types of posts is there anything constructive occuring. If you think it's against theme, suggest a way to make it themely. If it already exists, maybe consider if the suggestion does exactly the same thing, or if it could be made in such a way that it would be distinct.

I am trying to be as patient as possible in explaining that not all opinions are informed by the same level of experience.

Are you really trying to be patient as possible? Because this:

Look, I know this game better than you. I just do. I have played balls to the wall for years and done deep dives on every system we have but the Grid. I have held high positions in multiple big time factions. I have stolen millions of chy and snapped dozens and dozens of necks I had no business snapping. I speak from experience and that's not bragging, I've just been here a long time playing big shot characters who make things happen.

Seems more like side-tracking a thoughtful series of points raised by HolyChrome and Jameson into a recounting of your own IC exploits. If you need to preface your opinions with assurances of how much you know, and how good you are as a player, those arguments may not be as strong on their own merits as they might otherwise be were they not arguing from authority.

But that's insisting that your idea gets some form of support.
At no point in those types of posts is there anything constructive occuring. If you think it's against theme, suggest a way to make it themely. If it already exists, maybe consider if the suggestion does exactly the same thing, or if it could be made in such a way that it would be distinct.

@RSB

If someone likes an idea, they're free to support it, and if they dislike the idea, they're free to say why. I think in some of these threads you see people giving very thorough reasons as to why they're against it, and that's perfectly constructive. I think you might be discounting that because they're naysaying the idea. On the other hand, a +1 or -1 is fine.

It's no one's obligation to figure out how to make your idea work, I see a lot of this thrown around like, "Well I'm just testing the waters to see how other people feel about this," and while that's fine to do, if other people naysay, just repeatedly saying "Well how can we make it work then?" isn't really anyone's responsibility.

You're open to people coming in and saying, it could work like this, but not (apparently) as open to people coming in and saying, it won't work because of xyz. Feedback's feedback, it's part of posting an idea, and it gives you a clearer picture of where other people are at.

Sorry, got lost in the replies:

At no point in those types of posts is there anything constructive occuring. If you think it's against theme, suggest a way to make it themely. If it already exists, maybe consider if the suggestion does exactly the same thing, or if it could be made in such a way that it would be distinct.

See what you're asking here? You're asking that if you post an idea, everyone has to support it or else they're being unconstructive. Sometimes (often) an idea just speaks to poor understanding of mechanics, theme, or design.

Sometimes (often) an idea just speaks to poor understanding of mechanics, theme, or design.

What a number of people are suggesting is that if this is the case then just sit back and do not reply.

Find assurance in the knowledge that the idea is based upon a poor foundation and will not go anywhere.

The staff will nip it in the bud long before it gets anywhere near becoming an IC reality.

You're asking that I...not say that I think an idea is bad, and only post if I support it?
Even expressing dislike and criticism of the idea isn't the problem. It's all the junk around it. It's unintentionally comedic that in this thread and others we've got a lot of people telling people posting unfeasible ideas to listen to the people telling them their ideas aren't going to work, but then people don't listen to a bunch of people telling them that how they're talking to people isn't working.
What Hek said sums up my point quite clearly.

If it's a bad idea, you don't need to weigh in on it, because it won't go anywhere.

At this point I am not convinced that there is a tone that will work.
and lol no I'm not going to be quiet if I think your idea is bad. That's a ridiculous demand.
tl;dr

Everyone could stand to apply a bit more empathy, err on the side of caution, be less of assholes, and understand the positions that everyone is coming from.

That was the entire point of this post and I want to bookend it on that point.

What multiple people have articulated is that you (and anyone) should be able to say you think an idea is a poor one without turning the thread into a cesspool. Whether someone's been playing 20 years or 2 months, their experience and grandiose IC fun isn't leverage, we can all backpat on our own time.

I'm not sure what in the thread, from anyone, would indicate that they don't understand:

"not all opinions are informed by the same level of experience."

Like, I don't know if you're doing this rhetorical thing intentionally or not, but either way I think it's scummy:

Step 1: take it +11, be toxic, bullying, abrasive, bc haha 'I don't have a filter!, I'm just honest! the truth is harsh sometimes! at least I tell it how it is!' which is just what people who don't want to talk like adults say.

Step 2: dial it way back to like +2, 'Heyyy, what's the problem? It's just a GAME, bud, why you haf be mad? I just made simple, reasonable point and you're overreacting all craaazy'

I'm not backpatting, I'm explaining that there's not a conspiracy of oldbies that fear change but rather a cohort of players who know the game better.
I'll weigh in on any idea I want to, thanks, for instance if I don't like the idea of it or I can think of reasons it won't work.

I think asking people to do otherwise isn't very appropriate. Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

I disagree that you shouldn't post if you think it's a bad idea. Freedom of speech. If I don't like it I can express it, even if it's just a -1.
Nobody here is really doing themselves or the community any favors in this post to be honest.

You guys should relax, recoup, and make an effort to be a tad more accommodating/receptive.

At this point I am not convinced that there is a tone that will work.

I think that sums it up very well.

My sense as a third party observer is that people are just about as interested in reading your input about why things won't work, as you are in RPing with someone no-selling a life threatening situation that their character is in.

The BgBB board reminds me a lot of a car forum that I used to participate in. Rarely a day would go by without a new member joining the forum and wanting to talk about something that was covered in the FAQs and Sticky Posts at the top of every forum. The first dozen replies would be some variation of, "Read the FAQ. Stop asking the same question EVERYONE asks."

At a certain point, people either accepted that newbies are going to be newbies. Or they continued to get all angstful and harsh with people who asked the same questions and kept bringing up the same topics that had been previously hashed out "years ago".

It is just human nature and an inescapable dynamic of bringing new people into a community.

For me, I have faith that the admins have a good grasp on changing the game. They are not going to allow any major, game breaking changes without thoughtfully considering them. And they will also communicate their intention to make those changes long before implementing them.

I wonder, would it be helpful if there was a Pending Changes thread? In my mind, the newbies could hash out and have "uninformed discussions" in the Ideas thread all day long. If the admins find something in there that they are considering implementing, they can raise it in Pending Changes. Then the vets and others with a vested interest in the game can chime in there.

Pending Changes would allow newbies to voice their thoughts and not leave vets with the sense that they "have to" stay on top and squash every Idea that they "know" is bad. It would reduce a lot of friction.

For me, I have faith that the admins have a good grasp on changing the game. They are not going to allow any major, game breaking changes without thoughtfully considering them. And they will also communicate their intention to make those changes long before implementing them.

This is a great point Hek. I understand everyone wants their opinion heard and considered, especially on systems that will effect them, but it's not something worth becoming mortal enemies over.

I've seen plenty of cases of these things bleeding over into the IC world and people suddenly turning salty IC over a forum disagreement. It's foolish. Calm down, take a breath, step back if you need to, and be calm. A game breaking idea will not be implemented.

Oof. I'd really feel strongly against that.

It'd only further divide the playerbase. Where do you draw the line at 'vet'? How does staff decide who's fair game to discuss changes in the 'pending changes' forums? When does a newbie 'graduate' to the 'real' ideas forums?

Vets don't need to squash anything. They shouldn't be squashing. New players already find SD insanely intimidating IC, I'm horrified for the ones that find their way to the forums, Anor fucking bless the poor souls that hazard to post an idea, we know how that's going to go.

"Vets don't need to squash anything. They shouldn't be squashing. New players already find SD insanely intimidating IC, I'm horrified for the ones that find their way to the forums, Anor fucking bless the poor souls that hazard to post an idea, we know how that's going to go."

Whenever I approach an idea with a negative response, I try to supply some nugget of wisdom and insight into why. Doesn't work all the time in my haste, but my intention is to teach plays -why- an idea wouldn't work to help guide their thought processes better.

I'm not trying to dictate the way the game is developed. I'm trying to present course correction so players approach the game differently.

I think it would help a lot to elaborate a bit on what makes a good Idea and why an Idea might not be in the spirit of the game as others have a bit earlier in the thread.

I feel a lot of this is dancing around one crucial aspect to the game: a lot of the systems are obfuscated, imperfect, even downright ineffective because they're not meant to create a problem that promotes RP. There are gaps and hurdles that make it so that the thing you want to do is attainable, but it's going to take some effort and roleplay for you to do that. It's easy to look at those gaps as inconveniences and oversights that have yet to be filled in with a good solution and a lot of Ideas posts are that.

This is where the argument on 'status quo' comes in. A lot of Idea posts that face criticism aren't *bad ideas.* They're creative and inventive. The reason that they face criticism is that they're misguidedly seeking to optimize something that was never meant to be optimized- SD thrives on conflict, friction and need that takes involving other players to satisfy. The veterans aren't trying to stop change, they just recognize where a problem is an intentional gap rather than an unintentional one.

I'm going to raise the recent thread on remote bank transfers as a great example of both the point I'm trying to illustrate and where constructive criticism prevails, if we're willing to agree that the community's given it some weighing and seem to be in agreement. Players were quick to point out that while it would be -convenient- it wouldn't necessarily be fun or in the spirit of the game, where that very inconvenience forces you to react to it shape your roleplay. The thread didn't devolve into knifefighting from there and I think everyone's happy.

Ideas should add a feature to the game that expands possibilities but doesn't necessarily just make things easier out of hand where you could be employing other solutions. Optimization should never remove the fun from the game and should never pare away opportunities for conflict and interaction. I'd encourage vets to try to explain this in their feedback to ideas and I'd encourage newer players to stick things out and not feel discouraged. The game gets more fun when you start to realize that what makes the game harder is usually also what makes it fun and worthwhile.

*ARE meant to create a problem that promotes RP. Sorry. Changed direction midsentence and didn't backspace out all the way.
One could reasonably argue anyone presenting themselves as an authority on how to play SD the 'right' way, is ultimately just saying: 'This works okay for me, maybe give it a shot.' No one is an authority on anything except how they've approached things and what they've enjoyed.

I know of no veteran player, including the ones here, that has not had conflicts and struggles over how the game operated and how it ought to be, so I think it's disingenuous for there to be any presentation of an ideal and simpatico in-group to which all others must align themselves.

Oof. I'd really feel strongly against that.

It'd only further divide the playerbase. Where do you draw the line at 'vet'? How does staff decide who's fair game to discuss changes in the 'pending changes' forums? When does a newbie 'graduate' to the 'real' ideas forums?

My perception is that a number of more the veteran players predictably jump into the Ideas threads almost as soon as they come out because they have a concern that if they don't, the Ideas will get implemented and they will be caught unaware of a major game change.

My suggestion for a Pending Changes board or thread is not to create another delineation between players. The suggestion is to give the self proclaimed vets some room to breath. It gives them the ability to ignore Ideas, or at least not take Ideas so seriously to the point where they feel the need to police them. They can rest assured that nothing will be implemented or snuck into the game without first being advertised via Pending Changes.

Yeah, a 'pending changes' board or perhaps more realistically document would probably be a good idea if it could be implemented in a low-maintenance sort of way.

It would also provide players a chance to react to changes before they hit the server, and maybe even stop some ideas posts from going up, because something similar is on the document.

Kiwi nailed it better than I could.

I'm not trying to talk down to people or brag when I explain how I arrived at my opinion, I'm just trying to explain that I and some of the other players here have the benefit of years of insight a newer player might not even know they're lacking.

Newbies post great ideas all the time, but an idea shouldn't be insulated from criticism and posters should respect that an experienced player -1ing an idea isn't throwing their weight around out of a fear of change.

My perception is that a number of more the veteran players predictably jump into the Ideas threads almost as soon as they come out because they have a concern that if they don't, the Ideas will get implemented and they will be caught unaware of a major game change.

Rather a microcosm of human society at large, if one looks at voting demographics. I think it's natural for older players to be guarded about what they've been through and gained along the way, just as I think it's natural for younger players to want to test the prevailing beliefs and to have new ideas be explored.

While there have been occasionally grand meta-altering changes that have more or less come out of nowhere, there is also already an unfortunate state where keeping closely apprised of OOC channels and forums makes one a much, much more effective and prepared character IC, so I'm not sure what a good solution might be in terms of fostering better communication in terms of idea/changes feedback.

Mirroring what Kiwi mentioned...for example, as a newer player a while back I HATED waiting on levs. It chewed through my minimal playtime. It felt like a waste of time. I felt that I couldn't afford alternatives. I wanted to suggest things that would make it less annoying. Eventually though, I found IC means to reduce my reliance on them. I can't go into too much details here. However, once I found this, it was EXTREMELY satisfying.

SD has this weird thing where the things you hate give you satisfaction when you overcome them. The slowness of movement makes moving faster feel more impactful. Earning very little makes snagging that big item or bounty that much more exciting. The "shitty" things about the game (and I say that with a bit of tongue-in-cheek) can make your high moments even higher. Moving out of "nobody immy" into "person ordering immies around" feels like a real benchmark.

Now, I'm not saying that ALL frustrating things have to stay that way, but as Kiwi said, some of this is intentional. Clawing your way out of destitution is so much sweeter when it's harder.

I think a main issue with the ideas board is that there's no clear stopping point. The GM's shouldn't have to moderate every thread (or ideally, any of them) so they can focus on plot. Besides trying to be polite to eachother by both providing polite feedback, and accepting that feedback in stride, perhaps we could try limit responses to a single textual response and a +1/-1 and stop at that? I'm not trying to control the dialogue at all, but the back and forth seems to just get people riled up even when it's clear what both sides think.

Similar to OOC politics, if people are at heated odds, the chances of them swaying eachother is increasingly slim the longer and more intensely they engage. Not every time, but a lot of the time.

When there's no end in sight, and everyone is trying to get in the last word, things are bound to spiral out of control.

Normally I stay out of these conversations but sometimes I feel like we play Sindome in the client window and then we play the worlds best game of Paranoia in the forums.

We older, more experienced players have a higher security clearance. We are indigo and can't tell meaningless yellows about the true nature of Friend Computer!

Ok it was a bad joke don't crucify me.

But in a way it is kind of true. We all have different levels of experience and know different things, but we can't always talk about those different things because of the divide. The challenge I find myself having is how do I say, "Look, your idea has merit, for what you know, but you don't know the whole story, and I can't tell you the whole story. You are going to have to trust me when I say it needs to be this way for a very good reason."

And the deeper problem? I might not even know what I am talking about. Really Glitch, Slither, and Johnny have the final say on if an idea is good or not because they know more than the rest of us combined.

So, chill my dudes. Blues aren't out to kill the Reds, and Reds aren't out to undermine Friend Computer. That would be Traitorous, and Traitors aren't happy. You want to be happy don't you?

(Ok I am done with the Paranoia references now, honest!)

The challenge I find myself having is how do I say, "Look, your idea has merit, for what you know, but you don't know the whole story, and I can't tell you the whole story. You are going to have to trust me when I say it needs to be this way for a very good reason."

I think one of the serious problems that presents with how obfuscated SD systems are, and how restricted OOC communication is, is that while this happens legitimately plenty, it also happens erroneously just as, if not more, often.

Players will pull rank on issues where it's simply unnecessary or irrelevant, or do so when they think they know, but actually are more ignorant than they believe themselves to be and there is, in fact, a problem with the system they're defending they're not aware of. I do find that the 'FOIC' is just issued so, so often it begins to get dismissed, and I think there's examples in this thread of it being used both properly and improperly.

I don't think it's the job of any player, veteran or otherwise, to educate or inform another player about how they believe things are, or how they should be, or anything else, and certainly not within the scope of the forums as long as the ban on OOC communication of IC information applies -- but I'm not like, scratching my head about why people tend to just ignore the 'No, for reasons I can't say' responses when they're trotted out in every thread even when it's totally unnecessary.

I think this is especially unfortunate because in many cases it ends up proliferating erroneous information, like in one thread some time ago there was a player arguing from authority on a subject they were just flat-out wrong about, and presenting information to 'prove' their case that was also wrong. There's no good recourse to refute those sorts of things due to the rules involved, since you end up just explaining mechanics that are, under the rules, not supposed to be explained OOC, so I think players should be very judicious in how often they bring those sorts of appeals to authority to the table.

A few years ago, we had this absolutely toxic environment in Game-Help whereby the cool thing to do at the time was to smack the FOIC macro button as fast and as hard as possible to see who could say it first, Jeopardy! style. The community came together and agreed that it was toxic and awful, and we implemented the Karma system.

Fast forward two years and change, and now we're doing precisely the same thing on the forums. There's a ton of feedback on Ideas threads daily, and very, very little of it is constructive feedback.

We have daily accusations and/or actual occurrences of:

>Fishing for OOC game knowledge

>Implementing ideas purely to benefit a single character

>IC Bleed

>Thinly veiled accusations and/or blatantly calling out player's characters

>OOC metabanding and circling the wagons between cliques

>The list goes on..

My point here, is that very clearly, some people can't conduct civil discourse and discuss ideas instead of the people behind them. And it's a shame.

We as a community of players really need to get our shit together, because this incessant squabbling and bickering on the forum makes the game look bad, and is exactly the kind of thing we should not be doing if we want to retain good, talented roleplayers. Imagine someone logs into the game and all they see is the following in their game client:

[++] New post to topic 'BLAH' in Ideas

[++] New post to topic 'BLAH' in Ideas

[++] New post to topic 'BLAH' in Ideas

They click the link to see what the big deal is, and it's just a bunch of grown adults doing their best Pre-K fight club impressions. Are we going to retain that player?

My suggestion is simple, if we are continually having arguments between the same set of people daily, then clean it up, literally. As members here, we're not entitled to the right to talk OOCly in game or out of game with each other. Start off with some temp bans and take it from there. I'm relatively certain that the problem will correct itself in short order.

I think there have been a lot of good things said in this topic. There is one thing that I want to call out, and it's something I have mentioned before in other topics.

People who have been playing Sindome a long time have gotten a feel for how things are, why they are the way they are, and (regardless of how they feel about a specific feature/issue/request) have a somewhat intangible understanding of if it's an idea the staff are going to be willing to consider.

This is due to hearing admin on the BGBB, or xhelp, or xgame or ooc-chat, explaining the reasoning and thinking behind the choices the staff have made for the game over the years.

The only way to fast track that contextual knowledge and get a true feel for what we as a staff are willing to do / change, is to read every single BGBB post from front to back, probably multiple times.

This is unrealistic and I don't expect anyone to do it. I expect new players to come in with an idea that was brought up 5 years ago, or 5 months ago, and present it, and for their to be discussion on it, or at the very least, for them to be pointed to an older thread where things were discussed, providing them the context they may have been missing, along with an explanation of the search functionality and that it's good form to search for existing BGBB topics before making a new post.

However, just because something wasn't right for the game 5 years or 5 months ago, does not mean that as we have grown, learned, and discussed things, our priorities or understanding of the need for a feature have not changed.

One great example of this is our obfuscation of how stats and skills work. This was a big complaint for two decades. We held fast to our opinion on it, until we didn't, and we decided to level the playing field by expanding our help files to better inform new folks of how the systems worked-- since it was info older players had gathered by playing the game.

That is not to say we are going to change our minds on everything or that you should go necro every thread I've said no to in the past, but it does mean that when people continue to raise an issue, we continue to reevaluate our standing on it based on the new information and new arguments presented, and then make the decision again on if it is a decision we still stand behind.

It has also been rightly pointed out that people do not like change, and that often times, when presented with the option for something to stay the same or to change, many folks will prefer it to simply stay the same. Nothing wrong with that, but it is something we should be cognizant of. Just because something has been one way for a long time does not make it right, or beyond reevaluation. I have definitely seen, in myself, and in others, the knee jerk reaction of 'no it's always been that way'. And it sometimes takes folks saying 'just because it has always been that way, does not mean it should not be reevaluated'.

As a staff member, I have to answer the same questions over and over, year in and year out. Any of you on Game-Help have the same situations crop up and have to render help. It can, if you let it, become annoying. However, it doesn't need to be annoying. It's an opportunity to explain, kindly, why something the way it is, or render a helpful response that answers someones question. Even if it's the fifth time you've had to answer this question for someone.

The same can be applied here, when someone has an idea or creates a post that you just know is going to get shot down or go nowhere. You can choose not to respond and let someone (like me) weigh in politely and constructively, or you can be the constructive polite person that responds and saves me (or another admin) the time. What you shouldn't do is be rude or unhelpful. That doesn't help someone grow and become a better member of our community.

-- S

This post is miscategorized and should have gone in game problems and complaints.

In the future miscategorized posts will be deleted.