So, Novaro is gone. What next?

Started by Felione, Nov 04, 2023, 07:34 PM

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Felione

It has already been a few good months since the closure, and no one has truly stepped forward to be the replacement. I have yet to see a comparable experience, a bustling community, a thriving market, and a heavily involved staff. I understand this takes years to develop, but it seems every server I look at, is trying to be it's own, but no one is actually working towards a balanced experience, with activities to perform on a daily basis, or something to involve the community on a mass scale. I just see a bunch of restrictions, some strange rates, and nerfs to items, which I assume is to stabilize the zenny value early?

A lot of server owners must've been leeched to the highest level, and hopped servers forever, because their lack in understanding of how to mold a community is deafening. I'm pretty sure we are mostly fully developed adults at this point, but it seems part of the social development was ignored for many of these communities. Why is this so common? and why are all the staff so unaware of how to structure an interactive society? It really does make me believe that all of these other servers were created as an earning device, and simply become rebooted once they fail.

As laughable as it sounds, Talonro, although mismanaged, HAD (not anymore) a handle on their community for a long time. I experienced it myself, and I dedicated time to this community, trying to involve what few I could, because I believed it was worth investing time into that current state of the server. So, how is it, that a P2W server, with literal MVP cards in their shop, succeeded to mold a better community than most of these other servers? Boreas was NOT a kind and forgiving owner, he was quite ignorant, and I'm sure not much has changed, but the community had something to do besides HATE their owner, and I believe this is the biggest problem right now. Servers are appearing, with nothing but basic changes, or some reconstructed settings which offer little to no coordination with anyone. We are being fed nothing but scraps, and are told to live with it, or rather, accept it as it is, because so much work is being put into it. It's such a silly statement to make.

Muhro, as close to Novaro as it is, is actually nothing like it. After much discussion, and having spent months there, I can see that they are least TRYING to keep people interested, and communicating with their community like no other server in our short history. It is probably the most acceptable alternative, and it saddens me to say, because I was excited for the closure of Novaro, I saw it as a new beginning to something greater. It's very hard to down tone their effort, but their staff is very small in comparison, so struggling to put out an update must be stressful on their part, but they are doing it, and along the way, the community is HEAVILY involved in their decisions. Unfortunately, it's still just a shadow of how great it can be, but it's their choice to be this way, and if people are happy there, then I'll be happy for them.

As for the others? I'm dumbfounded and lacking words to describe how my 12 year old self could succeed in what they can barely understand. It is far too shocking to realize that there is nothing better, and no one attempted to claim these players for themselves, KNOWING the server would close immediately after the first claim was revealed. They had months in advance, and it was a late closure for what it should have been originally, and not ONE person thought this was an opportunity to secure probably the most involved community since iro. Truly a disappointing reality.

If I can lend server owners some advice? it is to stop thinking about yourself. YOU, liking your own server will not convince anyone of joining. Talk to your communities, involve them personally, and implement what they desire, while keeping your overall idea of what the server should be. One thing that Nova did right, was actually make changes to content he released, simply to appease his community. He was not happy with the changes, but the reward was praise and loyalty, and most importantly, respect for being capable of toning down an idea for the sake of your community. It doesn't matter how much experience you think you have, or how many years you invested into your product, what matters is the response of your community, and your reaction. Do something great for them, and reconsider your original desire of what the server should be, or you'll just end up playing it alone.

If anyone has any thoughts regarding this, please share them, and pass this on, because the last thing we need is a google shop full of irrelevant and broken products, multiplying and congesting what is supposed to be the primary portal for our childhood activity, which we dearly loved and enjoyed.

Thank you for reading, and have a wonderful night.

Sairek Ceareste

If the solution seems so simple for you, why not try working on your own? Is there something stopping you?


You might end up liking working on one and it could end up being a big success. Or at the very least, grant you some insight on the difficulties behind making and running a server.

2k2

Like many people has said in recent topics here and Reddit: The RO community deserves this sh*tty limbo we're currently in with ZERO decent servers to play. The casuals blindly following or ignoring blatant corruption or toxicity/narcissism from server owners is what caused all this in the first place.

You gave the perfect example of a server with such situation: TalonRO/Talon Tales; where both server owners (Seiren and Boreas) are dirty and corrupt as f***, getting exposed multiple times with their shady activities, protecting big donators, allowing a group to actively RMT, providing @item2 to this same group and trying to shutdown anyone talking or digging anything related to this. And just like you said, they're not good people either, they're both known for their toxicity, arrogance and passive-aggressiveness, all traits of narcissism. You can blame all this on casual players that just blindly ignore all this just to have a server they can call "home", despite knowing a lot of really bad things happens behind the scenes. Even worse when these blind casuals keeps donating to the corrupt narcissists. Seiren openly protected the biggest donator on Talon when he was caught using nodelay and banned dozens of players for exposing the videos and screenshots on discord (after being ignored on report tickets) just to not ban the cheater. The entire Talon community witnessed the drama at the time, the evidences (before their staff team desperately tried to erase everything), and still just shrugged it and continued to play like nothing happened and the staff was a bunch of good people. Threads were created on Reddit at the time exposing all the stuff regarding this and guess what? Seiren contacted the moderators of RO sub asking them to delete the threads to "protect their image" and the moderators obliged. This was when I saw the RO community in general deserves to get sh*tted on because the people in responsible roles are actively defending one another's dirty, also the reason why I never interacted with that sub.

Midgard Legends is another good example of this, where the entire community exposed that server's admin for his lies, previous history of corruption, ties with RMT guilds/schemes, and players still playing there despite all the drama with the ADM and p2w guild exploiting major bugs.

Origins' team is the only and last hope for this game and community.

Find me here:


ADM Ornstein

In my humble opinion, after 20 years of RO, I believe server staff has a good path ahead to properly develop a custom project. I believe this is the path RO should go for.

RO is a great game, but clearly flawed. Everyone knows its flaws and most people don't want to work on these issues. Sometimes the players themselves don't want changes as they are either afraid of whats new and different, or prefer to focus on nostalgia.

I started Return to Morroc with the idea of providing "new blood in an old game", new ideas, good or bad while paying respects for the original and attempting to modernize it. I 100% believe this path could be take by other ADMs/GMs to try and build what Gravity and others did in the past.

NovaRO was a strong server, regardless of issues, in providing high quality content, adaptation and changes. It was very distant from vanilla RO and was special in it's own way.

But maybe it's time for highly customized projects that have a vision and path to shine. For new ideas to be built and to improve/modernize upon the games flaws and respect the player's time (for example, Cards are a key feature of the game...and for some people spending 10+h farming a monster for it means difficulty...for me its a time sink that doesn't respect the player and makes most slotted lower level items/cards useless...while you could provide cards for them to gear up on the way to end game and try stuff out.)

While very few are currently trying to go for it (and only Return to Morroc is currently going for the full remake idea), I hope we can see more, -POLISHED-(Key word) custom projects with a strong sense of progression and ideas, as long as the game has a good vision and quality, it can be the next step in RO privates.

Or we can spend the next 10 years looking for WoE servers while killing thara frogs for 5 days so a card drops and we can actually try to have some semblance of fun.
Working again on cool stuff for people tired of the old stuff.

Luna Obscura:  www.youtube.com/@ProjectWorkshopRO

This time invite only. :P

dahman

#4
Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 04, 2023, 10:34 PMOrigins' team is the only and last hope for this game and community.



"Help us ObiWanKreuzBubi, you are our only hope"

but i guess oRo will not open anytime "soon"  /sob

Playtester

I'm curious what you think it is that NovaRO had that the existing servers are lacking.

You wrote a long post, but the only information I got from it was "NovaRO was good at holding the community together and all other servers are lacking this feat", but this doesn't really tell me what other servers should do that they are currently not doing.

I will also mention a few things to consider here:

1. Even if someone had the abilities to create a server just like NovaRO, they would probably not want to face the same fate, so the motivation to invest effort into this is kinda low. The most talented are almost always also the most hesitant (they know what they don't know), especially since they could just use their talent for something else that doesn't risk them getting sued.

2. People who join low-mid rate servers that are new are mostly people who enjoy the PVP competition to rush to the max. These people are naturally very competitive and are often perceived as toxic and/or rude. And thus the server's community might be perceived as "not holding together" too. And new servers who try hard not to cater to these competitive players exist by the way, it's just that they have only 5-30 active players max and so you probably don't hear much about them.

3. Communities change over time. It's not that now that NovaRO closed there's 2000+ players waiting for a similar server. From all the people I talked to I think that at least 70% quit RO altogether (for now) and a few (like 10-15%?) even felt forced to move to official servers now.

I suffered this realization already years ago when EternityRO closed. As a casual PVM low rate player who just wants to find new people, introduce them into the casual play style, and have some fun killing goblins with a level 40 party together, there was simply not the community for this anymore. Not enough casual players remained, many already saw everything and were not interested in such an experience anymore, and not enough completely new players started playing the game to fill the gap. It's not like no server owner was able to make a server with the structure of EternityRO anymore and more like there was simply not the community anymore to make such a server.

Tokeiburu

Yeah I wouldn't praise NovaRO too much if I were you. No one in the staff had the same vision you're referring to. GMs were fighting over literally everything and disliked one another. All the time was spent on useless suggestions that only catered to a single player and we'd spend several hours discussing it. Nova kept taking bad decisions after being told on multiple occasions it was a bad idea, so much drama could have been prevented.

What custom changes did you like? I recall numerous forum threads complaining about those changes and the staff ignoring them, creating even more drama on top. Thankfully players never saw the first drafts of those custom changes because they're stuff of nightmares.

You mention a bunch of weird restrictions... NovaRO had that too? Every new reward system had a weird gimmick to it. Party share system with drop rates adjusted by party size. A party drop system with a different drop rate system that I can't recall, and I believe there was yet again another party drop system on top. Think about the Shadow Gear system... what a mess. And then there was the infamous Purified Knight Shield system, good lord. It's just as bad as everywhere else, if not worse actually.

Custom content? Well, if you can call Monster Hunter releasing a new boss fight every 2~3 years good custom content, then this is a lost cause. And those bosses weren't even fun, it was just annoying after the first time. The mechanics were being spammed so much that you couldn't even deal damage to the boss.

Custom instances? Those were fun, but *apparently* players preferred field maps instead. So the original plan of releasing a custom instance every one to two months was cancelled in favor of more field maps. Don't worry, this makes as much sense to you as it does to me.

Dedicated staff? Err... maybe in the beginning of the server, but it definitely wasn't the case later on. We had three meetings a week, and everyone would disappear the moment those meetings were over, not to be seen until the next meeting. The Sunday meetings were also dedicated to player suggestions, so in reality we only had two meetings. And for clarity, people rarely worked outside those meetings so that's why everything was moving at a snail's pace. The same behavior happened for the GMs in-game. They had a quota for running events, so once that was done, they couldn't log off any faster. I wouldn't call that very dedicated. Plus, the regular GMs weren't exactly allowed to take part into the real discussions anyway.

The community? Well this one is bitter sweet for me. It's good of you to compare the community with TalonRO because when I was interacting with my GM, I was copying what I liked from my experience on TalonRO after all. I was just goofing around in-game, had fun interacting with players, ran events on the spot and talked with players some more while answering their questions. Honestly, I was just having a good time, I was even actively playing the server with my silly named characters. There were other GMs following this pattern and together, we all had a blast with the players.

But behind the scenes was a different story altogether. We were being told to "be more serious/professional", that our events should be made into bot-like automated events instead, that we shouldn't resize players anymore, that we shouldn't run more than X events per hour, that we shouldn't give too many rewards, etc. Meanwhile, those GMs were being treated poorly (me included) by the other admins in the staff Discord. Most of them left after fighting/arguing with Nova. Those fights were quite ugly too. I still remember consoling and trying to stop them from leaving the team.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg, it's probably best to keep most of it hidden from the players to keep the "good image" of NovaRO. In my opinion, it would be quite easy to make a better server (and I most certainly don't want to take any part in this anymore, never again).

But, I'll give you that, NovaRO was a great server in its first ~5 years.

Blinzer

Quote from: admornstein on Nov 04, 2023, 11:26 PMIn my humble opinion, after 20 years of RO, I believe server staff has a good path ahead to properly develop a custom project. I believe this is the path RO should go for.

RO is a great game, but clearly flawed. Everyone knows its flaws and most people don't want to work on these issues. Sometimes the players themselves don't want changes as they are either afraid of whats new and different, or prefer to focus on nostalgia.

I started Return to Morroc with the idea of providing "new blood in an old game", new ideas, good or bad while paying respects for the original and attempting to modernize it. I 100% believe this path could be take by other ADMs/GMs to try and build what Gravity and others did in the past.

NovaRO was a strong server, regardless of issues, in providing high quality content, adaptation and changes. It was very distant from vanilla RO and was special in it's own way.

But maybe it's time for highly customized projects that have a vision and path to shine. For new ideas to be built and to improve/modernize upon the games flaws and respect the player's time (for example, Cards are a key feature of the game...and for some people spending 10+h farming a monster for it means difficulty...for me its a time sink that doesn't respect the player and makes most slotted lower level items/cards useless...while you could provide cards for them to gear up on the way to end game and try stuff out.)

While very few are currently trying to go for it (and only Return to Morroc is currently going for the full remake idea), I hope we can see more, -POLISHED-(Key word) custom projects with a strong sense of progression and ideas, as long as the game has a good vision and quality, it can be the next step in RO privates.

Or we can spend the next 10 years looking for WoE servers while killing thara frogs for 5 days so a card drops and we can actually try to have some semblance of fun.

it's been 10 years and i still don't think the world is ready

it might never be



charlielovesu

As a server owner who can be fully transparent about some of your complaints about the scene, I'll try to give as much insight and honesty as I can.

The reality is, that running a server's community is the most taxing part of it. 1 to 5 people cannot manage this and its not even remotely possible.

People want the following:

1.) New Content or events pumped out constantly
2.) Bug Fixes promptly since it hampers their experience
3.) Community driven activity and engagement.
4.) Proper moderation of cheating and toxicity both in game AND in discord.
5.) Server stability
6.) Ideally, good server balance in terms of managing the economy and players feeling good about logging in.


And they want you to manage all these things out of the kindness of your heart while you make sure the server isn't P2W in any aspect. You WILL be criticized even for tradeable costumes, and god forbid you even consider anything beyond that.

NovaRO (and TalonRO) are extremely successful because they had predatory financial models and were treated like a business. You can't have your cake and eat it too basically.

In order to do all of the above you need a very large staff of extremely skilled people and you need to know you can trust ALL of them. Because even a single corrupt person and it starts to get dicey. Speaking from experience, any time I even give someone new I don't know that well a chance it never ends well and I end up regretting it.

Finding talented people willing to work for basically nothing or next to nothing who are also trustworthy is essentially impossible to near impossible. Those that ARE trustworthy and extremely talented (they exist) tend to be spread out over their own servers.

The people who are talented in this community are few and far between and tend to (righfully) be invested in their own projects.

This means the people who are left who are talented enough to help you manage the server are likely either not trust worthy or are not going to work for free. (which is absolutely fair, no one should have to if they aren't willing)

NovaRO made a s*** ton of money and Nova could afford talent like Tokei to help run his server for him in a top notch way.


If you aren't willing to have a predatory or p2w model though its extremely difficult to make enough money to really pay everyone. I personally can afford to pay my partner and fund the server myself as a hobby, but expecting much more than that is unlikely. I could probably afford one more top tier dev if I felt it was really worth it, but I would probably be going into the red at that point for the sake of the server. (which isn't a bad thing, it would be worth it for the right dev)

At the end of the day, I think every server admin group really wants to have a bustling community. We'd love it. We all know what it takes, we just don't have the resources without selling out. And many of us just aren't willing to. I'd say our server is actually really successful compared to the vast majority, and even I'd say we don't make that much money at the end of the day. Not to warrant the kind of staff you are talking about that Nova had.


TLDR = to build a great community you need people, people do not often work for free, and servers simply do not make enough money.

  • x 2

Zulf

Quote from: Felione on Nov 04, 2023, 07:34 PMIf I can lend server owners some advice? it is to stop thinking about yourself. YOU, liking your own server will not convince anyone of joining.

Yeah, nah. Motivation is needed to work on server development (unless you treat your server as a business, and that will also burn you out quickly).

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 04, 2023, 10:34 PMOrigins' team is the only and last hope for this game and community.

The amount of hate we get for just existing doesn't show us that.

Seb

#10
Quote from: admornstein on Nov 04, 2023, 11:26 PMIn my humble opinion, after 20 years of RO, I believe server staff has a good path ahead to properly develop a custom project. I believe this is the path RO should go for.

RO is a great game, but clearly flawed. Everyone knows its flaws and most people don't want to work on these issues. Sometimes the players themselves don't want changes as they are either afraid of whats new and different, or prefer to focus on nostalgia.

I started Return to Morroc with the idea of providing "new blood in an old game", new ideas, good or bad while paying respects for the original and attempting to modernize it. I 100% believe this path could be take by other ADMs/GMs to try and build what Gravity and others did in the past.

NovaRO was a strong server, regardless of issues, in providing high quality content, adaptation and changes. It was very distant from vanilla RO and was special in it's own way.

But maybe it's time for highly customized projects that have a vision and path to shine. For new ideas to be built and to improve/modernize upon the games flaws and respect the player's time (for example, Cards are a key feature of the game...and for some people spending 10+h farming a monster for it means difficulty...for me its a time sink that doesn't respect the player and makes most slotted lower level items/cards useless...while you could provide cards for them to gear up on the way to end game and try stuff out.)

While very few are currently trying to go for it (and only Return to Morroc is currently going for the full remake idea), I hope we can see more, -POLISHED-(Key word) custom projects with a strong sense of progression and ideas, as long as the game has a good vision and quality, it can be the next step in RO privates.

Or we can spend the next 10 years looking for WoE servers while killing thara frogs for 5 days so a card drops and we can actually try to have some semblance of fun.

Rtm was definitely fun, but for some players (me included) it strays too much from what ro was, and from what I expect from a mmorpg. There are no real support classes (kingslayer might be the closest to one), so almost every class focuses on dmg, and 95% of content is done with the mindset of it being soloable, trying to emulate darksouls type of games.

While thats the cup of tea of some people, and what seems to be "popular" nowadays, with many games copying dark souls formula, some people still enjoy games with defined classes and strenghts (like vanilla ro,wow,ffxiv) where you have classes centered on support,tanking,debuffing,disruption,etc.

Seb

Quote from: charlielovesu on Nov 06, 2023, 12:07 PMAs a server owner who can be fully transparent about some of your complaints about the scene, I'll try to give as much insight and honesty as I can.

The reality is, that running a server's community is the most taxing part of it. 1 to 5 people cannot manage this and its not even remotely possible.

People want the following:

1.) New Content or events pumped out constantly
2.) Bug Fixes promptly since it hampers their experience
3.) Community driven activity and engagement.
4.) Proper moderation of cheating and toxicity both in game AND in discord.
5.) Server stability
6.) Ideally, good server balance in terms of managing the economy and players feeling good about logging in.


And they want you to manage all these things out of the kindness of your heart while you make sure the server isn't P2W in any aspect. You WILL be criticized even for tradeable costumes, and god forbid you even consider anything beyond that.

NovaRO (and TalonRO) are extremely successful because they had predatory financial models and were treated like a business. You can't have your cake and eat it too basically.

In order to do all of the above you need a very large staff of extremely skilled people and you need to know you can trust ALL of them. Because even a single corrupt person and it starts to get dicey. Speaking from experience, any time I even give someone new I don't know that well a chance it never ends well and I end up regretting it.

Finding talented people willing to work for basically nothing or next to nothing who are also trustworthy is essentially impossible to near impossible. Those that ARE trustworthy and extremely talented (they exist) tend to be spread out over their own servers.

The people who are talented in this community are few and far between and tend to (righfully) be invested in their own projects.

This means the people who are left who are talented enough to help you manage the server are likely either not trust worthy or are not going to work for free. (which is absolutely fair, no one should have to if they aren't willing)

NovaRO made a s*** ton of money and Nova could afford talent like Tokei to help run his server for him in a top notch way.


If you aren't willing to have a predatory or p2w model though its extremely difficult to make enough money to really pay everyone. I personally can afford to pay my partner and fund the server myself as a hobby, but expecting much more than that is unlikely. I could probably afford one more top tier dev if I felt it was really worth it, but I would probably be going into the red at that point for the sake of the server. (which isn't a bad thing, it would be worth it for the right dev)

At the end of the day, I think every server admin group really wants to have a bustling community. We'd love it. We all know what it takes, we just don't have the resources without selling out. And many of us just aren't willing to. I'd say our server is actually really successful compared to the vast majority, and even I'd say we don't make that much money at the end of the day. Not to warrant the kind of staff you are talking about that Nova had.


TLDR = to build a great community you need people, people do not often work for free, and servers simply do not make enough money.



Most of ingame corruption is easily solvable, hell, a server i gm'd for solved it easily. It showed on the control panel, in live time,  every command done by a gm (so it could be audited). Also gm accounts had a restriction (couldnt trade nor drop items).

KickStart

Quote from: Tokeiburu on Nov 05, 2023, 11:25 AMYeah I wouldn't praise NovaRO too much if I were you. No one in the staff had the same vision you're referring to. GMs were fighting over literally everything and disliked one another. All the time was spent on useless suggestions that only catered to a single player and we'd spend several hours discussing it. Nova kept taking bad decisions after being told on multiple occasions it was a bad idea, so much drama could have been prevented.

What custom changes did you like? I recall numerous forum threads complaining about those changes and the staff ignoring them, creating even more drama on top. Thankfully players never saw the first drafts of those custom changes because they're stuff of nightmares.

You mention a bunch of weird restrictions... NovaRO had that too? Every new reward system had a weird gimmick to it. Party share system with drop rates adjusted by party size. A party drop system with a different drop rate system that I can't recall, and I believe there was yet again another party drop system on top. Think about the Shadow Gear system... what a mess. And then there was the infamous Purified Knight Shield system, good lord. It's just as bad as everywhere else, if not worse actually.

Custom content? Well, if you can call Monster Hunter releasing a new boss fight every 2~3 years good custom content, then this is a lost cause. And those bosses weren't even fun, it was just annoying after the first time. The mechanics were being spammed so much that you couldn't even deal damage to the boss.

Custom instances? Those were fun, but *apparently* players preferred field maps instead. So the original plan of releasing a custom instance every one to two months was cancelled in favor of more field maps. Don't worry, this makes as much sense to you as it does to me.

Dedicated staff? Err... maybe in the beginning of the server, but it definitely wasn't the case later on. We had three meetings a week, and everyone would disappear the moment those meetings were over, not to be seen until the next meeting. The Sunday meetings were also dedicated to player suggestions, so in reality we only had two meetings. And for clarity, people rarely worked outside those meetings so that's why everything was moving at a snail's pace. The same behavior happened for the GMs in-game. They had a quota for running events, so once that was done, they couldn't log off any faster. I wouldn't call that very dedicated. Plus, the regular GMs weren't exactly allowed to take part into the real discussions anyway.

The community? Well this one is bitter sweet for me. It's good of you to compare the community with TalonRO because when I was interacting with my GM, I was copying what I liked from my experience on TalonRO after all. I was just goofing around in-game, had fun interacting with players, ran events on the spot and talked with players some more while answering their questions. Honestly, I was just having a good time, I was even actively playing the server with my silly named characters. There were other GMs following this pattern and together, we all had a blast with the players.

But behind the scenes was a different story altogether. We were being told to "be more serious/professional", that our events should be made into bot-like automated events instead, that we shouldn't resize players anymore, that we shouldn't run more than X events per hour, that we shouldn't give too many rewards, etc. Meanwhile, those GMs were being treated poorly (me included) by the other admins in the staff Discord. Most of them left after fighting/arguing with Nova. Those fights were quite ugly too. I still remember consoling and trying to stop them from leaving the team.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg, it's probably best to keep most of it hidden from the players to keep the "good image" of NovaRO. In my opinion, it would be quite easy to make a better server (and I most certainly don't want to take any part in this anymore, never again).

But, I'll give you that, NovaRO was a great server in its first ~5 years.

Tokei knows what he's talking about.
Hi Toks! (Lazarus)

The behind-the-scenes with GM work was a bit of a slog - lots to do with little reward other than donation points (In-game cash shop) as payment.
I got burned out after a few months between 2016-2017 and dropped from being a "Helper" (Sub-GM, basically, forum assistant and in-game helpdesk stuff), then came back and got dragged into being a GM for about three months in 2018 - and again got burned out almost immediately, quitting the game after.
The "Meetings" we were allowed in were few and small-scope, most discussions happened between only the owner, and a few of the admins, Tokei, etc from what I saw. We felt alienated, and when we were "included", it was for the menial tasks, like fixing script translations, NPC text, etc. Nothing we felt involved in.

My best experience on that server was playing, not being on staff - the staff scene was a mess, for sure.
Staff was also allowed to take part in WOE, iirc (Correct me if wrong) - which I was not a huge fan of, regardless of whether or not there was any shady action going on with that. Too much room for corruption and favoritism.

This is easily noted in the actions Nova took as the owner, and the eventual consequences and fallout from those actions.
He developed an all-star team administratively, no lie, but I wouldn't exactly say NovaRO was the pinnacle of private servers...


betwixtbetween

Emulators deserve NOTHING. kRO, jRO, twRO enjoyers eating well.

Xellie

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 04, 2023, 10:34 PMLike many people has said in recent topics here and Reddit: The RO community deserves this sh*tty limbo we're currently in with ZERO decent servers to play. The casuals blindly following or ignoring blatant corruption or toxicity/narcissism from server owners is what caused all this in the first place.

You gave the perfect example of a server with such situation: TalonRO/Talon Tales; where both server owners (Seiren and Boreas) are dirty and corrupt as f***, getting exposed multiple times with their shady activities, protecting big donators, allowing a group to actively RMT, providing @item2 to this same group and trying to shutdown anyone talking or digging anything related to this. And just like you said, they're not good people either, they're both known for their toxicity, arrogance and passive-aggressiveness, all traits of narcissism. You can blame all this on casual players that just blindly ignore all this just to have a server they can call "home", despite knowing a lot of really bad things happens behind the scenes. Even worse when these blind casuals keeps donating to the corrupt narcissists. Seiren openly protected the biggest donator on Talon when he was caught using nodelay and banned dozens of players for exposing the videos and screenshots on discord (after being ignored on report tickets) just to not ban the cheater. The entire Talon community witnessed the drama at the time, the evidences (before their staff team desperately tried to erase everything), and still just shrugged it and continued to play like nothing happened and the staff was a bunch of good people. Threads were created on Reddit at the time exposing all the stuff regarding this and guess what? Seiren contacted the moderators of RO sub asking them to delete the threads to "protect their image" and the moderators obliged. This was when I saw the RO community in general deserves to get sh*tted on because the people in responsible roles are actively defending one another's dirty, also the reason why I never interacted with that sub.

Midgard Legends is another good example of this, where the entire community exposed that server's admin for his lies, previous history of corruption, ties with RMT guilds/schemes, and players still playing there despite all the drama with the ADM and p2w guild exploiting major bugs.

Origins' team is the only and last hope for this game and community.



Small correction - Threads were removed on Reddit because no private servers should have been named while all the legal hoohaa was going on.
Quote from: Aurus on Feb 13, 2024, 07:44 PMp.s. you are such a bad and toxic player I hope to never see you or your guild again


Innomite

#15
Quote from: Tokeiburu on Nov 05, 2023, 11:25 AMYeah I wouldn't praise NovaRO too much if I were you. No one in the staff had the same vision you're referring to. GMs were fighting over literally everything and disliked one another. All the time was spent on useless suggestions that only catered to a single player and we'd spend several hours discussing it. Nova kept taking bad decisions after being told on multiple occasions it was a bad idea, so much drama could have been prevented.

What custom changes did you like? I recall numerous forum threads complaining about those changes and the staff ignoring them, creating even more drama on top. Thankfully players never saw the first drafts of those custom changes because they're stuff of nightmares.

You mention a bunch of weird restrictions... NovaRO had that too? Every new reward system had a weird gimmick to it. Party share system with drop rates adjusted by party size. A party drop system with a different drop rate system that I can't recall, and I believe there was yet again another party drop system on top. Think about the Shadow Gear system... what a mess. And then there was the infamous Purified Knight Shield system, good lord. It's just as bad as everywhere else, if not worse actually.

Custom content? Well, if you can call Monster Hunter releasing a new boss fight every 2~3 years good custom content, then this is a lost cause. And those bosses weren't even fun, it was just annoying after the first time. The mechanics were being spammed so much that you couldn't even deal damage to the boss.

Custom instances? Those were fun, but *apparently* players preferred field maps instead. So the original plan of releasing a custom instance every one to two months was cancelled in favor of more field maps. Don't worry, this makes as much sense to you as it does to me.

Dedicated staff? Err... maybe in the beginning of the server, but it definitely wasn't the case later on. We had three meetings a week, and everyone would disappear the moment those meetings were over, not to be seen until the next meeting. The Sunday meetings were also dedicated to player suggestions, so in reality we only had two meetings. And for clarity, people rarely worked outside those meetings so that's why everything was moving at a snail's pace. The same behavior happened for the GMs in-game. They had a quota for running events, so once that was done, they couldn't log off any faster. I wouldn't call that very dedicated. Plus, the regular GMs weren't exactly allowed to take part into the real discussions anyway.

The community? Well this one is bitter sweet for me. It's good of you to compare the community with TalonRO because when I was interacting with my GM, I was copying what I liked from my experience on TalonRO after all. I was just goofing around in-game, had fun interacting with players, ran events on the spot and talked with players some more while answering their questions. Honestly, I was just having a good time, I was even actively playing the server with my silly named characters. There were other GMs following this pattern and together, we all had a blast with the players.

But behind the scenes was a different story altogether. We were being told to "be more serious/professional", that our events should be made into bot-like automated events instead, that we shouldn't resize players anymore, that we shouldn't run more than X events per hour, that we shouldn't give too many rewards, etc. Meanwhile, those GMs were being treated poorly (me included) by the other admins in the staff Discord. Most of them left after fighting/arguing with Nova. Those fights were quite ugly too. I still remember consoling and trying to stop them from leaving the team.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg, it's probably best to keep most of it hidden from the players to keep the "good image" of NovaRO. In my opinion, it would be quite easy to make a better server (and I most certainly don't want to take any part in this anymore, never again).

But, I'll give you that, NovaRO was a great server in its first ~5 years.

I wanted to talk about Tokei regarding this topic but here I am with the man himself talking about his experience.

You clearly are toning down all the hard work you did for the sinking ship NovaRO had always been. If there's anyone to thank for the success of Nova as a whole it'd be you, bro.

Clear Box here: not the best player community wise, but I was a stubborn one.
I saw countless times how the staff kept making dumb decisions and not a few minutes later, Tokei fixing stuff because he was literally there most of the time to clean the mess everyone else had made. Most of the time we'd just see a circus whenever a new feature of addition got bugged. Remember the Twister Trickster King incident?, Halloween was a ride every new year. The rest has been explained by Tokei already.

As someone who stuck up with the server from its start until 2021-2022, I'd say those claims about the community being "held together" are quite exaggerated. The community was wild and toxic to say the least, and on the final stretch when I wanted to come back, you could almost feel the unwelcoming atmosphere as everyone would just mind their own business. You can blame it on the inminent end that was bestowed upon the server, but it certainly wasn't what it used to be before.

Community interaction with the staff was 50/50; while there were a lot of AMA sessions and a lot of polls regarding new content and a bunch of player suggestions, discussions would begin to create wars in #main with constant namecalling, usually prompting Nova to shut down all interactions until things quieted down. There was also this time when the refiner was "bugged?" And Crimson weapons were also very popular at the time and someone started showing off their +20 weapons (Zia's human nature) which caused a havoc in the community.

Most of the time this "held together" community split apart due to opposing ideals regarding literally every bit of content. The most hilarious one was in the PvP scene regarding MVP cards, and the staff actually tried to balance them out by applying some sort of "banlist" Yu-Gi-Oh style but eventually people managed to basically make a meta deck (kekw, shoutouts to Alliance) and caused people to point fingers at "GM friends".

I could name more and more incidents about how this server wasn't as "peak gameplay" as people made it out to be, but I guess it's the nostalgia of having this "sense of belonging" that no other server has managed to make people feel.

If I could describe NovaRO in one sentence, it'd be: It was just the best of the worst.
For the love of Ragnarok Online!

Metan

Yeah, of all servers I could think of, NovaRO would not be an exemplary one. If anything, what 2k2 said last page, even though it was not aimed at NovaRO (I think), helps to explain why NovaRO lasted so long. It's like x (formerly Twitter, lmao) and Discord: everyone knows the mess they're in and they only expect the worst coming from their staff, but they still won't quit because they don't want to bother looking for a good alternative, or make one themselves; or because doing so would sever ties with people they wouldn't really be able to contact so nicely as they do right now. Sometimes, it goes on indefinitely, like with Talon, and sometimes it gets so bad that everyone agrees it's too much and just move onto somewhere else, as it happened with Skype.

For me, this current scene is a natural thing, and I believe it's a point of no return. As an anecdote, I used to play Mount & Blade Warband a lot, and I have played most of the major mods and some obscure gems, from Floris to Warwolf. I really, really like Warband, but I have played it so much that I have basically exhausted my will to play it anymore; and I have come to realize that modern games being generally s*** is not necessarily an incentivizing fact to keep playing Warband, because if modern games are crap and I'm bored of the old stuff, then I'll just slowly but surely stop playing games.

Likewise, RO is a bit over 21 years old by now. I'm sure more and more servers will come up, but I, and I think a lot of people as well, have had enough. Not necessarily in a bad sense, and more like what I described above. Further, there will come a time when all those players bound to RO by blind nostalgia like a stick in the mud will one day realize at last they're never catching up with the dragon they've been chasing all this time. Hopefully I'm not coming off as dramatic, I just think that's how it is.

2k2

Quote from: Xellie on Nov 08, 2023, 10:42 PMSmall correction - Threads were removed on Reddit because no private servers should have been named while all the legal hoohaa was going on.
False.

People were still discussing and naming private servers all day, including TalonRO/Talon Tales. Before, during and after people were talking about Talon, and specifically during that period, A LOT of people were talking about that server because of the rumours about corruption happening there.

A huge thread was posted exposing a lot of the sh*t that happen in that server and how Seiren, Boreas and the rest of Talon staff tried to cover it over the years, prevented people from talking about it and even threatened or straight banned anyone on discord talking about it or the Reddit post. The thread very quickly got a lot of traction (for obvious reason, just like the RagnaTravels one did or the recent Midgard Tales ones did), people were discussing it in a civil manner yet the moderators still locked it up to protect Talon.

The guy then showed us screenshots of Discord DM conversations with 2 corrupt moderators from Reddit and how they admitted Talon staff reached them out asking them to make everything disappear and they did. People continued to discuss and mention Talon during the day of this thread and after. The thing was, everything neutral or good being talked or discussed about Talon, was allowed to stay up, while any bad talking about the server and especially exposing with evidences the corruption in there, were quickly deleted/censured/users banned. If I remember correctly, Seiren was even using a lot burner reddit accounts to manipulate the upvote/downvotes and talk sh*t to the people bashing his server, just like Lord J did in the RagnarokTravels thread.

There was no thing such as "private servers shouldn't have been named", it was straight censorship from the moderators in order to protect the corruption happening on Talon, as that thread was such a major threat to them, that bans happened on their Discord, and a few weeks later, they even deleted their old Discord server and made a new one as they knew they couldn't erase all the evidences talked about in the big thread.
Find me here:


2k2

@charlielovesu

I agree that running a server is not an easy task at all, and I congratulate anyone trying to do it, but in many cases you guys make it worse for yourselves.

Quote from: charlielovesu on Nov 06, 2023, 12:07 PMPeople want the following:

1.) New Content or events pumped out constantly
2.) Bug Fixes promptly since it hampers their experience
3.) Community driven activity and engagement.
4.) Proper moderation of cheating and toxicity both in game AND in discord.
5.) Server stability
6.) Ideally, good server balance in terms of managing the economy and players feeling good about logging in.
1. Players who want constant content or events are just a portion of the community. We have examples (the biggest, actually) of servers that releases new content EXTREMELY slowly and almost no events at all yet the server was and still is the best RO private server to ever exist, to the point where as soon as it comes back, A LOT of the servers currently online will lose a good portion of their players.

2. Bug fixes are important, but the only kind of bug fixes people urge the staff to fix it as soon as possible are exploitable ones that can ruin things in a really bad way for the present or future.

3. Casuals care about that kind of stuff. That's not on the staff's side to do this. You create and moderate a Discord server and that's all, the community will driven its own activity.

4. Obviously. RO players are old. We have our daily jobs and errands to do. We don't want to get home, sit down to chill playing a bit and then dealing with a bunch of weird neckbeards shouting madsh*t to you for no reason. Moderating cheating and toxicity IS NOT HARD despite of what many server owners claim. OriginsRO is the biggest example of this: they created and enforced their rules in such an iron fist way, that toxicity was almost non-existent there; I know this first-hand because I myself got A LOT of players banned extremely quickly for acting toxic and that really was enough to put a leash on them, especially on some that were on the "red list" of the server's staff and were very close of getting permanently banned. Lazy donkey server owners that like to pat the head of cheaters and toxic players are what makes them ballsy enough to break the rules with no fear of backlash, because they think they're immune to it. Toxic communities are toxic because the server staff allowed it to become toxic.

A pretty good case for this is how in the last 2 months before Origins shut down, p2w guild started playing there, talked a lot of bullsh*t as usual, saying they'd win everything easily and all, how they'd dominate the MvP competition and gear up in a week and then dominate WoE. They didn't do any of this, because in the first week of them competing against me, half their group got banned for days, and after that, they kept getting banned over and over for the next 2 months, and never won a single MvP against any of the EU guilds. They resorted into MvPing only during NA time because they couldn't compete against ANY guild in the server. Needless to say that when they got ready to WoE there, they got smashed by all the guilds in the server as well. So, you see how this guild has an history of being notoriously toxic, yet on OriginsRO they tried to put the same bullsh*t they do in any server and were quickly shutdown, and then started acting like normal human beings, or they would end up getting permanently banned.

5. Not gonna talk much about this, but I do understand it's hard to be stable when you have enemies attacking you nonstop, but I also understand how some players doesn't have the patience or understanding to endure this.

6. Of course they want this. Players want longevity and stability for the future of the server, even for servers they know will implode within months. This balance is not hard at all to achieve in a vanilla server with no pay-to-win cash shop (REMINDER THAT TRADEABLE COSTUMES ARE STILL PAY-TO-WIN), it's just that servers in 2022~2023 want to fancy up too much and change too much the base game to the point you can barely call it RO anymore, so of course things are gonna be harder and weirder to balance.

Quote from: charlielovesu on Nov 06, 2023, 12:07 PMAnd they want you to manage all these things out of the kindness of your heart while you make sure the server isn't P2W in any aspect. You WILL be criticized even for tradeable costumes, and god forbid you even consider anything beyond that.
And you should not only be criticized, but ashamed as well. Trying to make profit out of stolen property is at least laughable. Even more laughable when you try to justify it.

It's pretty simple, if you don't want to run a RO server, then don't run a RO server. If you want money, then go work a regular job. Monetized servers are the worst, what fuels corruption and what's killing this game and community.

Quote from: charlielovesu on Nov 06, 2023, 12:07 PMNovaRO (and TalonRO) are extremely successful because they had predatory financial models and were treated like a business. You can't have your cake and eat it too basically.
NovaRO was indeed extremely successful, but I disagree on Talon. Both servers indeed had predatory models and straight up scams too. Reminder how 2 days after it went public that NovaRO was getting sued by Gravity, TalonRO make a big announcement that they were going to run their biggest cash shop currency promotion in the server's history, and despite people asking if that related to the lawsuit at all, they said no and promised the server would stay up, then 2 weeks later, they announced the closure of their server. Same predatory tact you see in any major publisher when they lose their rights on a game and try to milk out their community one last time (EnMasse & GameForge @ TERA is a good example of this).

Quote from: charlielovesu on Nov 06, 2023, 12:07 PMIn order to do all of the above you need a very large staff of extremely skilled people and you need to know you can trust ALL of them. Because even a single corrupt person and it starts to get dicey. Speaking from experience, any time I even give someone new I don't know that well a chance it never ends well and I end up regretting it.

Finding talented people willing to work for basically nothing or next to nothing who are also trustworthy is essentially impossible to near impossible. Those that ARE trustworthy and extremely talented (they exist) tend to be spread out over their own servers.

The people who are talented in this community are few and far between and tend to (righfully) be invested in their own projects.

This means the people who are left who are talented enough to help you manage the server are likely either not trust worthy or are not going to work for free. (which is absolutely fair, no one should have to if they aren't willing)

NovaRO made a s*** ton of money and Nova could afford talent like Tokei to help run his server for him in a top notch way.
I don't disagree with any of this. It's indeed hard to find talented devs willing to work for free or for a more affordable price. But you need those when you have bold projections for your server, which is not something neccessary at all. RO players still like and love the true vanilla game, and for that, you don't need much or much experience. You can gain experience slowly over time trying to port and rebalance renewal content to pre-renewal as it's something already from the game, fully using the games assets and everything.

Repeating this again: you server owners of recent servers all want to make your server fluffy and exclusive and with cool custom content and such but the reality is that 80% of the players doesn't give a sh*t about it, doesn't interact with these new stuff you all put (and invested, supposedly) a lot of effort on and most of the times it's super buggy or unbalanced. Keep things simples. Be more like OriginsRO perhaps? You know, just the most popular and beloved server in the past 10 years, which happens to be like 98% vanilla content with SUPER SLOW content update? That server is an example of the key to success.

Quote from: charlielovesu on Nov 06, 2023, 12:07 PMIf you aren't willing to have a predatory or p2w model though its extremely difficult to make enough money to really pay everyone. I personally can afford to pay my partner and fund the server myself as a hobby, but expecting much more than that is unlikely. I could probably afford one more top tier dev if I felt it was really worth it, but I would probably be going into the red at that point for the sake of the server. (which isn't a bad thing, it would be worth it for the right dev)
Excuses and more excuses. You want to profit out of stolen property, you just want to save face trying to pass as the victim, lol.

Literally nobody asked you to create any new content, or rebalance the whole RO, or create new mechanics. People just want a stable RAGNAROK ONLINE server, not something so customized it hardly remembers RO. And (again), for that, you don't need to put much effort, let alone pay people for it.

Take Origins's team as an example: very small team of devoted and passionate players that work slowly at their own pace for their game with zero pressure from the community. Yeah, they're solid because they managed to build a team of decent people, but everyone can do that too over time. You can't just meet a random person and in a couple months trust they will have the responsibility to be in a position of importance.

Quote from: charlielovesu on Nov 06, 2023, 12:07 PMTLDR = to build a great community you need people, people do not often work for free, and servers simply do not make enough money.
Wake up. RO is not a job. Stop seeing this game with money eyes. This is the problem with greedy and corrupt admins like you, Seiren, Boreas, [ADM]Loki/GM Cronwell/Rebelo, Lord J, Cookie etc.

To build a great community, you need a set of very good rules and strong, serious, dedicated staff willing to fully enforce those and punish people accordingly with no fear.
Find me here:


2k2

Quote from: Zulf on Nov 06, 2023, 01:16 PMThe amount of hate we get for just existing doesn't show us that.
Of course you'd get a lot of hate, you're doing something right and successful haha. People love to hate on success, and what you guys did has always been amazing.

Gotta think more about the love you guys get instead of the hate. Literally everywhere (servers and communities) you go, people talk good about Origins and how they're "waiting for it to return" to be there playing, some (most, perhaps) even on RO hiatus waiting for your server to return because it's literally the only playable server we've had in the past decade or maybe more.

The few hate I see you guys getting are from trolls or those people on discord who doesn't follow rules and keeps bothering/annoying the staff over trivial things, like when people here and on Reddit talks a lot of trash about skyleo claiming he's "rude" or "toxic" or whatever, when in fact he just doesn't come up with sh*t and people acting in an unnecessary way, which is more than correct and his right. I know I'd do the same or perhaps be even harsher.
Find me here:


Xellie

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 10, 2023, 10:26 PMFalse.

People were still discussing and naming private servers all day, including TalonRO/Talon Tales. Before, during and after people were talking about Talon, and specifically during that period, A LOT of people were talking about that server because of the rumours about corruption happening there.

A huge thread was posted exposing a lot of the sh*t that happen in that server and how Seiren, Boreas and the rest of Talon staff tried to cover it over the years, prevented people from talking about it and even threatened or straight banned anyone on discord talking about it or the Reddit post. The thread very quickly got a lot of traction (for obvious reason, just like the RagnaTravels one did or the recent Midgard Tales ones did), people were discussing it in a civil manner yet the moderators still locked it up to protect Talon.

The guy then showed us screenshots of Discord DM conversations with 2 corrupt moderators from Reddit and how they admitted Talon staff reached them out asking them to make everything disappear and they did. People continued to discuss and mention Talon during the day of this thread and after. The thing was, everything neutral or good being talked or discussed about Talon, was allowed to stay up, while any bad talking about the server and especially exposing with evidences the corruption in there, were quickly deleted/censured/users banned. If I remember correctly, Seiren was even using a lot burner reddit accounts to manipulate the upvote/downvotes and talk sh*t to the people bashing his server, just like Lord J did in the RagnarokTravels thread.

There was no thing such as "private servers shouldn't have been named", it was straight censorship from the moderators in order to protect the corruption happening on Talon, as that thread was such a major threat to them, that bans happened on their Discord, and a few weeks later, they even deleted their old Discord server and made a new one as they knew they couldn't erase all the evidences talked about in the big thread.

Tell me more about moderation policies
Quote from: Aurus on Feb 13, 2024, 07:44 PMp.s. you are such a bad and toxic player I hope to never see you or your guild again


2k2

#21
Quote from: Xellie on Nov 11, 2023, 12:00 AMTell me more about moderation policies
F*ck me, should have read the username before replying so I could just ignore and pass on interacting. Bleh

Very insightful reply. Thank you for adding absolutely nothing to the discussion. Not that I would expect any better from you tho.

@charlieluvsu

Something I should have added in one of the replies but I don't want to edit it now as many people already read it and would lose this:

Many server owners have openly explained the costs of running and upkeeping a server. And they say it's not much (especially when the sum is shared between a few), meaning there's ZERO excuse to run a server for profit.

I bet my life that if a server's staff like from Origins decided to open a way to accept voluntary donations, in their worst month they would make more than your weird server made in your best month. Good work pays high and goodwill goes even far. Working for free doesn't mean you can't get money. A good example of this is the massive success of Adam/RuneLite on Oldschool Runescape, where a random guy with a passion started a little fully-free project out of love, did such an astonishingly good job that people willingly send him so much money monthly that he started paying most of his contributors enough for them to quit their regular jobs and work only on this free project. Take this as an example, drop the greediness, corruption, excuses and become a better person.
Find me here:


Saika911

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 10, 2023, 11:07 PMNeedless to say that when they (p2w) got ready to WoE there, they got smashed by all the guilds in the server as well.

You make some good points, but stating such obvious lies without anything to back it up makes you look very biased. They smashed every other guild and it's easy to verify if you cared. So I don't know if any of your other anecdotes have merit.

QuoteAnd you should not only be criticized, but ashamed as well. Trying to make profit out of stolen property is at least laughable. Even more laughable when you try to justify it.

It's very obvious for anyone with a brain to see that Charlie is not like other owners who are only in it for the money. There's nothing laughable about providing a service that even Gravity is not interested in, and despite appearances doesn't ever bother to sue in almost all cases. Your black and white thinking is what makes you unable to see the reality here.

QuoteRepeating this again: you server owners of recent servers all want to make your server fluffy and exclusive and with cool custom content and such but the reality is that 80% of the players doesn't give a sh*t about it, doesn't interact with these new stuff you all put (and invested, supposedly) a lot of effort on and most of the times it's super buggy or unbalanced. Keep things simples. Be more like OriginsRO perhaps? You know, just the most popular and beloved server in the past 10 years, which happens to be like 98% vanilla content with SUPER SLOW content update? That server is an example of the key to success.

I myself don't like most custom content, but throwing numbers like "80% of the players" out there is laughable. Servers with custom content have thousands of players, so speak for yourself please. OriginsRO was a dead server for most of its lifespan. Maybe you were one of the couple hundred people who joined the first vanilla-like (multi-client, autoloot) server you saw in 2020 during the pandemic, so you wouldn't know. The server lost most of its players when the nostalgia wore off or people realized the server had no future because the staff made it clear that they are not interested in most changes players wanted, which is their right and nobody should blame them.

QuoteLiterally nobody asked you to create any new content, or rebalance the whole RO, or create new mechanics. People just want a stable RAGNAROK ONLINE server, not something so customized it hardly remembers RO. And (again), for that, you don't need to put much effort, let alone pay people for it.

Again you are speaking for everyone, lol. ML and RTM are some of the biggest servers out there right now and ML is objectively trash.

QuoteTake Origins's team as an example: very small team of devoted and passionate players that work slowly at their own pace for their game with zero pressure from the community. Yeah, they're solid because they managed to build a team of decent people, but everyone can do that too over time.

The server had no WoE players left by the end and 300 people online with multi-client allowed. You are taking one moment in time and blowing it out of proportion, and even praising devs for not adding anything to the game, which is really disingenuous.

Metan

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 10, 2023, 11:07 PMa LOT of text and I'm too lazy to select the relevant paragraphs
While I do agree with some things you said, there are a couple things I'd like to point out against your post:

1) to argue that the majority of RO players want vanilla content with little to no modifications is a rather misled point of view. There have been private RO servers with varying degrees of customized content for as long as I can remember, even back when this wouldn't really be an argument due to the sheer size of vanilla RO servers; I saw back then high rates and even ultra high rates with a lot more people than I'd presumed, with hundreds and sometimes even thousands of unique players, as I've played pretty much everything from 1/1/1s to absurdities like 60k (in fact, one of the most memorable servers for me is a long deceased 255/70). Just last year, we had a heavily customized server like OathRO reach a level of popularity that was not expected even by the most optimistic player or staff, and we're arguing in a topic about a deceased server that, given how far ahead it was in terms of Renewal content (and some custom stuff added on top as well), had as much to do with pre-re RO as current DotA is similar to its 6.72 patch forever ago, and it was still widely considered a popular server. Finally, this game is older than a lot of zoomers out there; it may as well be considered a solved game. It's incongruous to sustain such an argument with all of these in mind.

2) What you said about Origins is only accurate in a specific time frame. That server gained a lot of traction during the pandemic; then, a good deal of players quit as lockdowns were slowly lifted off and when they nerfed party exp (aimed especially at Bio3 leveling), and I don't quite remember if they reverted this nerf in part or not, but they never really recovered from this. More players quit over the following months due to a number of things, including dissatisfaction over episode scheduling (lol @ implementing Hugel in parts, it only made people increasingly impatient and worried that they'd do the same come Rachel), WoE stuff (unavoidable in this game), and Kreuzbube. Naming Kreuzbube as a head GM was their worst mistake: he's a good developer, but a terrible, horrendous communicator, and anyone who's shared any level of conversation with him in game, or on Discord, or in their Gitlab suggestion/bug report forum has certainly realized at once that he has zero communication skills. I'm not saying this to throw a quick jab at him, I'm stating a legitimate negative point for someone who's been appointed as a staff leader, which is a decisive factor for anyone who wants play a certain server in the long term. To my knowledge, their population only shrunk and shrunk up until the Gravity v Nova case when they closed doors indefinitely.
It's silly to label all who criticize Origins, or any other server really, as "trolls and toxic people." Of course people who were banned for botting/RMTing, or those who simply envy them, etc. will spout a lot of nonsense, but to think that's all there is to all the criticizing Origins has received across the years is basically pitting the good guys and the bad trolls, us vs them. A reductive, juvenile way to see the world.

Saika911

Quote from: Metan on Nov 11, 2023, 03:06 PM...and Kreuzbube. Naming Kreuzbube as a head GM was their worst mistake: he's a good developer, but a terrible, horrendous communicator, and anyone who's shared any level of conversation with him in game, or on Discord, or in their Gitlab suggestion/bug report forum has certainly realized at once that he has zero communication skills.

You have to keep in mind he did a lot of positive GM work, too. I agree that he has poor social skills and even now probably wouldn't agree to any point of criticism.

His main problem is his unclear stance on server features and priorities. At times he wanted to add things like RWC to the game and even implemented Pre-trans WoE (probably because he wanted to play it himself), a feature that replaces AHK in WoE and a lot of other custom stuff. Then he pretty much nopes out of whatever he's trying to add for years and you never hear about it again. And I totally understand that he never got paid and is working during his free time, so I'm not criticizing him at all. But you have to understand players are dumb and will get all kinds of wrong expectations if you dangle the carrot in front of them all the time.

And this was the main issue with originsRO. People having all kinds of expectations and no devs that have time or the same motivations as the players plus unclear communication.

2k2

@Metan

1. I also played all kinds and rates of servers over the years, going from some really big names back in the day such as XiLeRo, NamelessRO, LaoRO (999/500 pk server lol), many of these servers had their own customizations and they were massively popular at points, to the point of having even thousands of players.

I worded it poorly as I was pretty tired during writing that and the reply was messy and big, but what I meant was that I believe most players value stability over anything else, and custom content tends to be poorly designed, buggy or not even work, thus why it's safer and easier to just go the vanilla route. Using those customizations as an excuse to pay devs to justify monetizing your server (this is aimed towards Charlie's reply) is scummy.

2. It's indeed real that Origins had two big surge of players in the iRO EU players exodus and then again during the pandemic, but the numbers barely changed afterwards, it actually kept pretty much same in the past 18 months or so before it closed.

I don't have any personal negative experience with skyleo/Kreuzbube as every single person I reported there (and it was a huge lot of people) directly to him, he quickly dealt with it and had always been very polite and level-headed with me, even on trivial/casual conversation. I do though understand the hate towards him as he's indeed short tempered and tends to lash people over minor things (very similarly to Boreas from Talon, which led to him getting leashed by Seiren and stopped doing any public statements or even interacting with players regularly), some people are more sensitive about this, but personally I value more professionalism and good work than personality if I'm not gonna be interacting with them all the time. I myself am a person just like him and people also tends to hate me just because I'm quiet, impatient and humorless when not among friends. He and his team does an amazing job though so who cares if he's bad to some people sometimes.
Find me here:


Metan

Quote from: Saika911 on Nov 11, 2023, 03:40 PMYou have to keep in mind he did a lot of positive GM work, too. I agree that he has poor social skills and even now probably wouldn't agree to any point of criticism.
He really did. He would actively investigate things on Aegis as he really sought a server as accurate to the original game as possible, even if some of the proposed changes brought a lot of negative replies (like Cecil Damon's reaction to players hiding behind a corner, and I think something about Charming Wink), and I think respect is due to whoever sticks to his plans in spite of reactions as long as he's not heading straight off a cliff, and I don't think that was the case with his dev stuff. But for me, the real MVP was whoever worked on oRO client: implementing Master Account like they did, all the extra settings on patcher like lowered graphics, seamless .exe that actually allowed me to play with effects on and never face a FPS drop even with 3/4 guilds sandwiching one another, and even a built-in window with extra info and even a targeted @ii/@mi on items/mobs with a simple right click... a shame I forgot his name, but hats off to him.

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 11, 2023, 04:16 PMI worded it poorly as I was pretty tired during writing that and the reply was messy and big, but what I meant was that I believe most players value stability over anything else, and custom content tends to be poorly designed, buggy or not even work, thus why it's safer and easier to just go the vanilla route. Using those customizations as an excuse to pay devs to justify monetizing your server (this is aimed towards Charlie's reply) is scummy.
Ah, I see what you mean! Custom content is indeed hard to balance, you need to understand the game in a way that often escapes the average player's perception or you'll just break things... unless you don't care about that in the first place, and you just want to make bank (releasing broken custom sets in cash shop, for example). The latter is unfortunately more common than the former, and may as well be why a lot of people scowl at the thought of playing in a custom server. I don't know that Charlie guy or his server though, so this is not aimed at him.

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 11, 2023, 04:16 PM2. It's indeed real that Origins had two big surge of players in the iRO EU players exodus and then again during the pandemic, but the numbers barely changed afterwards, it actually kept pretty much same in the past 18 months or so before it closed.
Ehh, not really. They peaked at what, 1.6k concurrent players (no autotraders, but also counting multis) and over 2k unique MAs across the day... I quit back in May 2021, and I think peak pop during EU evening/NA afternoon was like 900. I just checked a Discord server I'm in with a couple friends after old screenshots and videos, and as of 24 Feb 2022 they had 660 players around 3pm in NA East Coast, and 750 on mid April same year (can't really tell what time it was though). So yeah, that's a big drop.

Zulf

Quote from: Metan on Nov 11, 2023, 09:10 PMBut for me, the real MVP was whoever worked on oRO client: implementing Master Account like they did, all the extra settings on patcher like lowered graphics, seamless .exe that actually allowed me to play with effects on and never face a FPS drop even with 3/4 guilds sandwiching one another, and even a built-in window with extra info and even a targeted @ii/@mi on items/mobs with a simple right click... a shame I forgot his name, but hats off to him.
Heka. We all love him.

Quote from: Metan on Nov 11, 2023, 09:10 PM[...] they had 660 players around 3pm in NA East Coast, and 750 on mid April same year (can't really tell what time it was though). So yeah, that's a big drop.
It's OK, we don't care about numbers. We had 20~40 users before iRO refugees joined, and we will continue the server anyway even if population is low.
One of Haru's ideas goes like: "I want to come back to a server years later and still be able to play my characters.", so it's not about numbers; it's about having a place to play and chill.

>About Leo stuff.
He took care of the server when everyone left. He wasn't promoted or anything. If I was around, I would have had to do the same (and I understand when he's angry at people).

wLink

OriginsRO was more bearable for me to play when it had below 1k players anyway. During the early pandemic a lot of maps were overcrowded. I hope the server will be back someday even though I probably won't play it because I prefer servers without multiclient now, it would be sad to see one of the best non p2w servers (if not the best) to be gone forever.

PowRO

As a server owner, it's my experience that p2w quality isn't what's popular. You have lots of experienced administrators speaking here, with some of them being the biggest developers/supporters that rAthena currently has. We tend to see things through rose colored lenses when we're reminiscing, but they tend to not be what we're feeling when we're remembering them. Many of the things you are saying servers aren't doing, are actually being done by many, nobody wants to develop a server to see if fail. In my case, my server is pretty desolate (lol) and I try to follow good principles like 0 p2w and giving ppl a sense of pride for what they hunt, but it's hard to become popular when there's no money involved too, and like Charlie said, everybody wants you to do more and more out of the kindness of your heart and the more you accommodate, the pushier they become.

Sachimi

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 04, 2023, 10:34 PMYou gave the perfect example of a server with such situation: TalonRO/Talon Tales; where both server owners (Seiren and Boreas) are dirty and corrupt as f***, getting exposed multiple times with their shady activities, protecting big donators, allowing a group to actively RMT, providing @item2 to this same group and trying to shutdown anyone talking or digging anything related to this. And just like you said, they're not good people either, they're both known for their toxicity, arrogance and passive-aggressiveness, all traits of narcissism. You can blame all this on casual players that just blindly ignore all this just to have a server they can call "home", despite knowing a lot of really bad things happens behind the scenes. Even worse when these blind casuals keeps donating to the corrupt narcissists. Seiren openly protected the biggest donator on Talon when he was caught using nodelay and banned dozens of players for exposing the videos and screenshots on discord (after being ignored on report tickets) just to not ban the cheater. The entire Talon community witnessed the drama at the time, the evidences (before their staff team desperately tried to erase everything), and still just shrugged it and continued to play like nothing happened and the staff was a bunch of good people. Threads were created on Reddit at the time exposing all the stuff regarding this and guess what? Seiren contacted the moderators of RO sub asking them to delete the threads to "protect their image" and the moderators obliged.

Receipts? I missed this drama.

Quote from: Playtester on Nov 05, 2023, 04:38 AMIt's not like no server owner was able to make a server with the structure of EternityRO anymore and more like there was simply not the community anymore to make such a server.

I'm pretty sure a lot of servers had corrupt owners who stole donations, but okay.

Quote from: 2k2 on Nov 10, 2023, 11:07 PMWake up. RO is not a job. Stop seeing this game with money eyes. This is the problem with greedy and corrupt admins like you, Seiren, Boreas, [ADM]Loki/GM Cronwell/Rebelo, Lord J, Cookie etc.

It takes as much time to do (as an admin or owner) as a real job. Sometimes more, depending on your level of involvement. When I was an admin on Eternity, I would spend an average of about 12-14 hours per day online doing my job. Granted, I was doing admin AND regular GM work due to someonewhoshallnotbenamed causing the staff to leave, but still. I was not paid, and didn't ask to be until the players themselves brought it up.