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  • Eggshells and Enjoyment

    Tactical Gamer are my favorite servers in NS2 and for the most part they really foster and encourage what makes the game enjoyable to a degree that other servers to do not. Namely, Communication, respect, and a mature attitude.
    For that reason alone I feel compelled to start a discussion on a matter that I feel strongly about to the point that it is actually effecting my desire to frequent there. I am going to try my best to keep this short, but it is by nature a very detailed and involved subject, so I apologize in advance. Please remember when reading the following that I know that this is your playground, and that I am not telling you how to run it, but rather I am sharing with you a perspective I have arrived at based on experiences of others shared with me, as well as my own.



    Over the course of months I have heard through the grapevine certain users I know of being banned, temporarily or not, for reasons that I didn't really care to investigate into because I was sure that there was two sides to the story, and some of these users DO have a history of being a little ball of personality at times / quite silly.
    But as time has progressed and as more "behavioral standards" have developed within the culture of TG, and subsequently the invisible list of potential offenses has grown, I have become increasingly concerned and unfortunately disenchanted with my favorite servers.

    Let me preface by saying I have 5 years under my belt of being a licensed "behavioral therapist", and am no stranger to "Bmod", conditioning, Lovaas and expected outcomes from such behavioral plans.
    Fostering an environment which is conducive to "advancing the enjoyment" of NS2 (as the primer outlines) should apply, with serious consideration, to *all* types of individuals and not just the few / admins / owners.
    Am I suggesting that the individual who wants to come in and spam obscenities should not have his particular brand of enjoyment ruined for the sake of the remainder? No.
    I am suggesting that there is a balance here, a spectrum and a line to be crossed, if you will.. that may not be apparent to those involved in this community who wish to shape group and individual behavior while they attend the server, and may not realize that they are not always advancing enjoyment for the whole. There is a large spectrum here to consider and I am concerned that it is increasingly moving to one end - the overly regulated and micromanaged end.

    "Great, thanks, so what are you suggesting exactly, Iron?"
    This line in the sand is very clear to me, personally, as it is based on my own reasons why I enjoy TG :
    ---If it infringes on any individual's freedom of actions and behavior that do not fall outside the basic principles of being mature, respectful, and communicative - then you are creating eggshells to walk on, and thus an unpleasant experience---

    If I want to jump at that Onos with my axe because I felt the glory of the moment and wanted to recreate the end scene from Reign of Fire, then that's what I enjoy! It isn't truly ruining anyone else's enjoyment of the game. I may not be the best teamplayer in that moment and one might even argue I was being selfish - well, that's not only real life but specifically that's called the freedom of choice, and in this case freedom to harmlessly enjoy yourself - not everything has to be purely altruistic in a team game. You can't tell me you have never baited a teammate or not enjoyed being that one who gets the last shot on the lifeform / hive.
    That Axe / Onos was just a silly example I made up but the same applies to a multitude of behaviors, from discussion on conceding, post mordem tactics, going for the powernode or the RT first, expressing demoralization, or even disagreeing with a commander's call - which btw is an INTENTIONAL design decision that was made for this game, in order to encourage a healthy relationship of trust and respect from the commanders who have earned it.

    In regards to that last example: For a real life example of why such a rule is poor, I am a former infanty Marine and while rank and billet is paramount and supersedes all, ("Instant obedience to orders without question") there are plenty of personal examples I can recall from myself and others who have sacrificed getting into serious trouble (NJP etc) for saving a whole platoon's worth of lives. Yes I realize that NS2 isn't real life.. but I just wanted to suggest that the Commander does not always know what's best, and if someone on the ground KNOWS BETTER and has UPDATED INFORMATION (as they often do) then they really should be entrusted to act on it individually just as the commander is entrusted to be in that chair...
    Also, last I checked the primer states "4) Focus on the intentions of the game design inside the boundaries of strategy and tactics that define Tactical Gamer as opposed to the crutches leveraged by some flaws in game mechanics."
    Which makes that commander rule just seem misinterpreted and even more poorly decided, representing the trend of leaning towards that side of the micromanaging spectrum.

    What's worse about all these behavioral expectations, is that this culture and where the line is exactly drawn is not clear to users OR your regulars OR your admins whom are kicking said users. They are frequently not clearly communicated to those who join the server. The TG culture is drifting towards one that still says it requires communication and seemingly encourages friendly discourse and tactical suggestion, but at the same time requires you to restrain yourself from non-communicated rule sets that are naturally occurring behavior, which are not only culturally typical within this game but also within that aforementioned framework and atmosphere which is encouraged!
    For example: "create a cohesive gaming community that consistently uses teamwork, communication, strategy and tactics" .. "But do not do so here, here, and there - or else"

    In short : If you truly wish to foster an enjoyable environment (I am assuming this is the primary reason behind discouraging demoralizing discourse) *then keep it simple*..

    There really is no need for causing confusion amongst your community and admins regarding this hidden subculture and the expectations behind them when it can be surmised in those 3 principles I mentioned in the first sentence of this post.
    Stick to the main principles and attempt not to end up at one end of the spectrum where you risk making attendees feel suffocated, anxiety ridden, and micromanaged to the point that they feel as if they are your own personal play things instead of having the freedom of choice and breadth in which to naturally enjoy themselves.


    "Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one's own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others."
    -John F. Kennedy



    Take care, and thank you for your time and consideration on the matter :)

  • #2
    Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

    We've too long tolerated too much. We've recently already begun tolerating less. The confusion will slowly subside as we establish our new norm.

    The net result will be eggshells for some and welcome respite for others.
    Steam Community? Add me. | Free Remote, Encrypted Backup

    Darkilla: In short, NS is pretty much really fast chess. With guns. Apophis: I haven't seen anyone say that SM's are better than non-SMs. Nordbomber: This is THE first server I've seen where either side can comeback from out of seemingly nowhere with the right teamwork. en4rcment: I have NEVER experienced the type of gameplay that I have found here. Nightly I am amazed at the personalities and gaming talent. Zephyr: Apophis is clearly a highly sophisticated self-aware AI construct that runs on a highly modified toaster oven in Wyzcrak's basement.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

      Well I guess a highly micromanaged atmosphere with conflicting messages about when to contribute to tactical decisions and generally restricting mature and well reasoned discourse that applies to the round is just not worth the upsides of a communicating and skilled playerbase, to me.
      It says a lot that I rather have frustratingly sloppy, uncoordinated games with varied skill levels and zero comms, if it means I don't have to step around dozens of authoritatively enforced, unintuitive soft rules. Hidden rules in a subculture which interfere with the natural culture of the game and the community itself, and really don't enhance everyone's enjoyment anymore than cameras on every corner of a town enhance a sense of privacy.

      No offense, but this all comes off as an obtuse and misguided path that started as a means to make the server a "better place" only because a few individuals could not handle what occurs naturally in human behavior and this game. It's not as though anyone is expecting you to tolerate rampant racism or bigotry or even badgering / poor behavior. The degree of behavior that has become unacceptable to you is anything that isn't innately positive - essentially creating a highly unnatural and contrived atmosphere where silence will begin to become the safe norm, because personalities are not just thrown away by individuals so easily, they often hold onto them just as strongly as you do. And silence is exactly the opposite of why people typically enjoy TG

      The UWE forums have been accused of being so overbearing that they are rivaled by no one in their censorship and moderation... yet not even we, despite our distaste for negativity, expect nor enforce such a policy of forced smiles.

      I can't bring myself to support such an overbearing direction, as it is against what I believe in, and more importantly when you have to remember to behave so starkly in contrast to typical and universally acceptable human behavior it really soils the "fun" that comes from playing even the most serious of games.

      So I guess this is so long, GGs and thanks for all the fish! :)
      Drop me a line if this is ever reconsidered

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

        No offense taken. Here's to your returning if and when your grapevine suggests it's a good idea.
        Steam Community? Add me. | Free Remote, Encrypted Backup

        Darkilla: In short, NS is pretty much really fast chess. With guns. Apophis: I haven't seen anyone say that SM's are better than non-SMs. Nordbomber: This is THE first server I've seen where either side can comeback from out of seemingly nowhere with the right teamwork. en4rcment: I have NEVER experienced the type of gameplay that I have found here. Nightly I am amazed at the personalities and gaming talent. Zephyr: Apophis is clearly a highly sophisticated self-aware AI construct that runs on a highly modified toaster oven in Wyzcrak's basement.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

          Originally posted by IronHorse View Post
          No offense, but this all comes off as an obtuse and misguided path that started as a means to make the server a "better place" only because a few individuals could not handle what occurs naturally in human behavior and this game. It's not as though anyone is expecting you to tolerate rampant racism or bigotry or even badgering / poor behavior. The degree of behavior that has become unacceptable to you is anything that isn't innately positive - essentially creating a highly unnatural and contrived atmosphere where silence will begin to become the safe norm, because personalities are not just thrown away by individuals so easily, they often hold onto them just as strongly as you do. And silence is exactly the opposite of why people typically enjoy TG
          I think one of the key problems with your assertion is that your definition of "fun" is required to be represented for the whole to be "fun" at all, or that expression that "doesn't hurt" is to be encouraged. I don't mean to be contrarian for its own sake here, but this is flat out wrong. Measurably, empirically, demonstrably wrong. This is not a public park. To use your own example, when I go at an onos or a fade with a battle axe, that DOES cost the team, even if I somehow win (and I do this occasionally, and often don't win). This isn't a bannable offense, mind you, which is an important take-away here. Nor is the team telling me just how intelligent my manoeuvre was. Keep in mind they typically won't care in all circumstances, so even this is "nuanced" as opposed to egg shells. I'm not afraid to act. I might be if I wanted to act like this was XBox Live and I was 14.

          The primary take-away from TGNS in the NS2 world for me has always been this: TGNS is committed to a group having fun playing the game. This doesn't mean everyone gets to have fun in their own way. Far from it. It means there are avenues to have fun that benefit the gameplay of all. Note that the things that clearly take away from that experience are heavily enforced, and the things that aren't clear are discussed, varyingly handled according to group policy and social dynamics, and with very little authority most of the time. That's actually huge for me, as I really don't even have to take note of who an admin is or isn't, they aren't speaking as an admin most of the time, they're speaking as a member of a community inviting compliance with the social expectations of the group, hoping to continue enhancing rather than punish.

          There are many examples of things that I find incredibly annoying that aren't enforced, for instance. Things aren't always "eggshells." An example: names. I can't even tell you how quick I would ground my kid if they pulled the name-switching some people do even on TGNS. In my house, you do NOT impersonate another person by their screen name, and you don't change your name to some random nonsense along with every other idiot you can convince to. What is TGNS' response to this? Tools to evaluate on your own, and encouragement to maintain community benefits in this regard. Anywhere else I've been, those players would have had authority handed to them, saying, "conform or be banned." I've played in a lot of communities on a lot of games. I'm not kidding here when I say every single one of them would have banned them for trolling. The harm is worse than taking an axe to an Onos. I can't communicate to 4 people named the same thing. Yet the response is metered, mature, and lacking in "authority."

          Hell, I just got a nice talking to about my own approach to a thing that went on today. There was no "hey, you're a bad person and you should feel bad." Like an adult, I was addressed saying there was a thing, getting clarification, agreeing on how to proceed in the future, clarification on the state of things I may not have been aware of, and everyone was happy. I DO feel bad, but that's not the intent and I don't have to worry about admins thinking terrible things about me. If they do, they will keep that to themselves and deal professionally with everyone else.

          Keep on carrying on, TGNS. You're doing good things.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

            Tod +1.

            If you only read one sentence, read this one. One thing that you are not considering is that any of the decisions/rules/changes, etc that bother you can be talked about and thoroughly discussed... even voted on in these forums. It is a point of profound sadness to me that we do not take more full advantage of these forums. Considering that this is about the second time I've seen your name in these forums, I'd be more than willing to bet on the idea that the frustrations that you have have not been discussed in length here.

            For as long as I've been with TGNS, the attitude and behavior has been unprecedented in the online community. Regardless of where I carry myself, one hundred and thirty five thousand percent of the time the TGNS atmosphere is a winner over all others. If I'm on Xbox Live, I'm dealing with 12 year olds yelling obscenities at me like they have no parents. If I'm on Battlefield on PC (outside of TG), I'm dealing with admin who do not care one way or another how I feel about their server... and 12 year olds yelling obscenities. If I'm on any other platform or even on PC and I'm on any other environment other than TG, I'm dealing with idiocy and abuse of power... this is easily true 90% of the time, globally.

            The one thing that TGNS brings to the table speaks volumes about the culture. Respect. It's not really that much to ask for from adults. We do it daily at work or at schools or at stores, etc. More often than not, I find that the people who have the most trouble with TGNS remind me of the people who would likely be getting kicked out of Walmart for crashing buggies into each other or hiding in coat racks. It's all innocent fun, in most cases, but once that fun is stomped on and tried to control, most people who are engaging in that behavior have a tendency to get upset. That's not to say that this is who you are, Iron.

            It is my opinion that you are looking at the package the wrong way. You seem to be so focused on the wrapping that you're not seeing the gift. TGNS fosters an environment where you CAN take an axe to that onos. The only stipulation there is that you damn sure had best used all your ammo and tried your best to use your body as a wall for the other team mates with ammo remaining. It's not a rule that we enforce on a regular basis. Wyz is right. If you think THIS is bad, you would have never been able to even come close to tolerating our TGNS1 community. It's literally like comparing High School to Prison.

            Personally, I'm not seeing the "forced smiles". I can kind of understand the sentiment when it comes to things like not talking about conceding or things like that. Kind of. But, I certainly do not, nor have I ever, felt like I am forced to be positive at all times. Maybe I'm doing it wrong, who knows. But, I think if the atmosphere were truly as forceful as being projected here, we certainly would not be one of, if not the, most popular Friday night spots... ESPECIALLY with Mirage at the helm. That's not to say he's not a great admin, it's more to say that he seems to be the quicker of them to enforce rules, especially on Capt night.

            We foster an environment where Bob can join a server, connect with a group of people, and play the game without worrying about TKing or insults or screaming children or etc etc etc. The shield is there for you as much as it is for me. Because we want to play an intense game that draws you in and immerses you in the thrill of the game while being able to rely on your team mates to do as they are expected. The vast majority of us comply to these standards, and that is why:

            Originally posted by IronHorse
            Tactical Gamer are my favorite servers in NS2 and for the most part they really foster and encourage what makes the game enjoyable to a degree that other servers to do not. Namely, Communication, respect, and a mature attitude.
            because if we didn't comply to those standards, you would be playing at Gorge4Back2SchoolLolTimeWithBob.

            All that said, I'm about 100% sure that anyone garnering a ban from a TG admin is likely the same guy hiding in the coat rack at Walmart. Don't get me wrong. I understand the enjoyment of that coat rack. But, this isn't Walmart.

            And with that said, I'm also about 100% sure that those bans are not permabans. It is important to note that our guardians are capable of banning someone if that someone is kicked enough (or such is my understanding). These bans are 24 hour bans. I highly, highly, /HIGHLY/ doubt anyone got banned for something as minor as taking an axe to an onos. More often than not, assuming all of our guardians and admin are acting within their guidelines, a ban is only garnered by someone who consistently persists to produce the same behavior over and over again. I have complete faith in the true admin of our server and I fully believe that if anyone was banned, they deserved it. At any time, either way, the person with the ban has the right to appeal it in the CAA section of the TGNS forums here.


            Originally posted by IronHorse
            even disagreeing with a commander's call - which btw is an INTENTIONAL design decision that was made for this game, in order to encourage a healthy relationship of trust and respect from the commanders who have earned it.
            It is important to understand that, whenever present, a TG environment, more often than not, does not comply to standards of play that are true for most other servers. The reason for this is the atmosphere we foster. In most cases, the above quote would make a lot of sense. It doesn't make a lot of sense in TGNS2. Because we know our commanders. We know the names of the people in the chair. And even if we don't, it's more than likely that the name in the chair is a name you recognize and trust. That trust is a product of the environment. That environment, which has largely been lax until lately, is a product of kicks/bans and the social engineering efforts of our admin. So, we stand above statements like this.

            Ask yourself this before you go forward, if you even read this thread anymore. When you go to a pub server and a commander gets in the chair and he doesn't immediately drop something at the start of the game, how many eject votes do you see followed by possible vulgarities and general rage? Put yourself in the same situation in TGNS. What do the vast majority of us do in this situation? I can't even remember the last time I've even seen the first eject vote, even for people we don't know. We try to teach people who are trying to Comm, at the sacrifice of our own enjoyment. Those people would never be banned like they likely would be in another server. It's sometimes funny to watch people come in and Comm. They get all antsy like they're ready to scream at people not listening to them. And the surprise and calm they feel when they realize that the vast majority of their team is listening and following orders is satisfying to see.

            With ALL of that said... [MENTION=38]Wyzcrak[/MENTION] has been the main force behind trying to foster this atmosphere we so thoroughly enjoy for as long as I've known TGNS. I'll stand behind him and any decisions he makes, even if I question them, 100%. The man knows what he is doing when it comes to building the atmosphere we all enjoy. I can't say the same for his ability to /PLAY/ the game, however.

            It may not be the environment for you. I've enjoyed playing with you, and I'm sure most others agree.

            Mom
            Last edited by YerMom; 12-21-2014, 11:09 AM.
            Games lubricate the body and the mind. - Benjamin Franklin
            Ever since the beginning, to keep the world spinning, it takes all kinds of kinds. -Miranda Lambert

            You're a 34, Mom. Thirty. Four.
            Forever Perplexed

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

              Truth is, IronHorse is right in his concerns. We debate this crap to death, and it's not a logical conclusion, it's human nature. No one discusses it because the counter argument comes so high and mighty it's not worth the discussion. Look above. No concern for the sentiment, no understanding, just a very abrupt answer that sounds extremely condescending. I've seen many names no longer on TG, and it's always the similar reason. It's getting to be so constricted that the fun is removed.

              Heck, it's known I think the whole idea OF an argument about whether to discuss conceding is an exact proof of IH's argument, and I know I change my behavior when certain players are on because their admin reaction will kill the atmosphere, although not always the server.

              I will continue to play almost exclusively on TG, it's skill and fun are second to no other community for me right now. As others leave and find new or existing communities, I miss them, and will visit them. That's the joy of an open world. However, to basically take a very well thought out post the address the very issues many people in and out of this community feel, and attack it, well, it's justifying the "grapevine" that you are so wilingly mocking.

              TG isn't a popularity contest, and it's not Wyz's, or anyone else's place to make everyone happy. However, the response here is saddening. The focus on keeping a "good atmosphere" is killing social communication. I just wish more of our regulars, who I know are on this forum reading this, would stand up and say what I've heard said in IMs and chats...

              Iron, I apologize and honestly thank you for your desire to bring to light an issue with, what I think is, one of the better NS2 communities. I think it is well reasoned, and respectful. I am sorry that it isn't so eloquently returned.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                There's more than one truth, more than one fun, and more than one grapevine.

                I'm not big on promises and/or threats. I'm more of a /deliver/ type of guy. My comment about IH's grapevine wasn't a mock, but a commitment: I wouldn't ask him to return based on "improvement" I /promise/, but rather on what I've /delivered/ (indeed, that others are /talking/ about having seen for themselves).

                When I say we've "tolerated too much", I mean we've tolerated too many funs. That is, we've tried to please too many. The net result is confusion, frustration, and stagnated growth. By accommodating fewer funs, those which we continue to promote will be enjoyed to a richer degree by those well-aligned with them.
                Steam Community? Add me. | Free Remote, Encrypted Backup

                Darkilla: In short, NS is pretty much really fast chess. With guns. Apophis: I haven't seen anyone say that SM's are better than non-SMs. Nordbomber: This is THE first server I've seen where either side can comeback from out of seemingly nowhere with the right teamwork. en4rcment: I have NEVER experienced the type of gameplay that I have found here. Nightly I am amazed at the personalities and gaming talent. Zephyr: Apophis is clearly a highly sophisticated self-aware AI construct that runs on a highly modified toaster oven in Wyzcrak's basement.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                  I sincerely hope that Rad nor Iron think I'm mocking or attacking the comments here in any way.

                  I think that two things are true about TGNS above all else, and maybe I'm wrong.. but it's my opinion:

                  #1 - it can be expected that you will be treated fairly.
                  #2 - it can be expected that we expect you to treat others fairly.

                  That said, this quote is the most profound and troublesome issue at hand:

                  Originally posted by Rad
                  TG isn't a popularity contest, and it's not Wyz's, or anyone else's place to make everyone happy. However, the response here is saddening. The focus on keeping a "good atmosphere" is killing social communication. I just wish more of our regulars, who I know are on this forum reading this, would stand up and say what I've heard said in IMs and chats...
                  My question to you, and anyone who may be reading this...

                  If there is such a huge issue with the social engineering structure introduced into the server, why are there only 6 users in this thread while we have at least 700 signatures on the Primer thread?

                  One of the most profound things Tanith has taught me is that.. more often than not... people cannot be bothered to try and affect change. I mean... Tanith's thread is 30 pages long.. and the /VAST/ majority of those comments are from, roughly, the same people that are talking in this thread. Very, very, very few others are included. It's not because they aren't welcome. It's not because they "don't have time". More often than not, it's because they don't WANT to or can't be bothered to come and try to affect change for something that we are trying to build for the community. So now a project that I have put 12 months in to, and that people have become attached to because they have put time and effort in to it... is being looked at by others as a server killer or a bad map because they couldn't be bothered to come and put their thoughts into text so that I can try to find a way to balance their concerns with those of other people.

                  At one point, a regular in the server, when asked by Wyz if he could come and post his thoughts he was expressing in voice in the server on Tanith, replied "no". That's it.

                  You're not going to get banned for saying what you think about something in the forums. Look at Iron's post. It would be very, very easy for Wyz (the person who spends the most of his time on social engineering) to be offended or put off by that post. But, he isn't. He's not insulting or dismissive. He takes it with a grain of salt and moves on. He would VERY likely consider major changes to the social engineering structure in place if a majority of people came to this thread and said they have a problem with it. But, they don't.

                  If it were up to me, I'd say the same thing we all hear people say about voting... "If you can't be bothered to vote, then you can't complain about the government."

                  How can anyone expect someone to know there is a social issue if the only negative response we see to a social issue is one or two guys posting a few paragraphs about it?

                  I think we'd get a lot closer to a more comfortable social structure if this proverbial grapevine were talking here rather than whispering to each other behind closed doors.

                  Mom
                  Games lubricate the body and the mind. - Benjamin Franklin
                  Ever since the beginning, to keep the world spinning, it takes all kinds of kinds. -Miranda Lambert

                  You're a 34, Mom. Thirty. Four.
                  Forever Perplexed

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                    Thanks for the replies from Todd, Mom, and Rad - I very much appreciate you taking time to engage in the discussion as well as provide counter points but most of all demonstrating an approach-able nature.

                    Just wanted to start with something I feel I should have cleared up before my original post: I wrote this thread after reading through the recent topics here.
                    While I have had the negative (ironic, right?) experience of "mood killing" reactions in the server before - and like I mentioned have been contacted from other users about their own experiences - it was reading these recent topics that *really* made me realize the degree in which the atmosphere and culture was shifting. It is true that I don't typically contribute in here, and mostly just lerk (heh), but the recent discussions just hit such a chord in me.. and apparently others as well*

                    Yermom and Todd: I am in agreement with both of you in regards to name changing and what is generally considered unacceptable behavior, but I feel neither of you are grasping the part where I attempted to describe the spectrum at hand, and where TG is currently sitting on that spectrum. (i'd include a picture but the forums won't let me)
                    Todd, (not to pick on you) you in particular might be unaware of the current 3 strikes rule in place when you mentioned "axing a fade is not a ban-able offense".. it certainly could be if this was your 3rd strike.
                    But I think what's more important is what you consider to be flat out wrong : There are a million ways how to not play optimally, a million ways that negatively impact your team, from what to build first, to the path you walked down, to attacking a cyst, to to you not purchasing mines. You can't start broadly forbidding non altruistic actions and expect all players to adhere to them *if* you are going to justify it by explaining how they all negatively impact your team, simply because, again... there is a spectrum here! Dropping all your weapons and sprinting through the map uselessly on every respawn has a much greater negative impact on your team than just axing an Onos when you know you are dead already... but attacking a cyst in the wrong moment could cost your team the round - making it wayyyy more negatively impacting than being a clown with no weapons!
                    But nobody will be kicked for attacking a cyst i am betting..

                    The spectrum is important to consider because it's a means in which to accurately assess the current situation, and because it negates any extreme examples as being a valid arguing point.
                    I am not saying people who smurf (name change) should be allowed to.
                    I am not saying people who act like a jack a** should be allowed to.
                    Hell, I am not even saying people should be allowed to curse (even though I personally support such a thing).

                    I am saying that where TG sits on this spectrum is much further than the examples you have both (Yermom and Todd) have provided in your counter points.
                    For example:

                    I cannot say "GG" before the round has actually ended
                    I cannot say anything that discusses where our strategy or implementation failed that round before it has actually ended
                    I cannot say "Hold X to concede" to remind the blind
                    I cannot say "We only have 1 RT and our Hail Mary Pass of JPs failed"
                    I cannot say "End it aliens" to shorten the time to the next round
                    I cannot say anything in a voice that is not naturally my own
                    I cannot say anything which might be (accurately or inaccurately) remotely construed as demoralizing in general, without an admin correcting me..

                    This is unprecedented in my entire gaming experience, and (should the "Tactical / Mature" atmosphere be the reason given) even my Marine Corps experience lol...
                    That is where I see the "forced smiles", Yermom, and that is the chord that struck me to take the time to write here.





                    *A potentially inflammatory side note :
                    Since I no longer have my favorite server to play on, I decided making a new one would be best since I did not enjoy most others, and to sort of test my own theory on what could be accomplished / whether the direction that TG has taken is *really* necessary, without relying on forum feedback which has poor participation. (taking a new/ fresh approach to managing can be difficult if you have been staring at the project for so long)

                    It is potentially inflammatory because the name chosen is "Tactical Freedom".... I hope this does not upset TG owners and admins, as I named it lovingly so. It is the tactical focus and communication which first drew me to it.. I wish to carry on that flame elsewhere, in an environment where I feel more comfortable. Hopefully others will be able to relate. Anyone can ask and receive a reserved slot, communication is highly encouraged, and the only rule is "Don't be a D**k". So far many of the TG regulars have been popping in and enjoying themselves and the server has been well populated - some actually display bitterness towards TG - and while I will not censor them for doing so, I want you all to know that it is most definitely not my focus and purpose of the server whatsoever.

                    I genuinely hope this doesn't ruffle feathers or create bad blood, but rather invites the space and air in which to have a progressive discussion with actual evidence to support it, instead of the stifling replies that Rad pointed out.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                      As has been made apparent (publicly) elsewhere at this point, this whole "when can I talk" backlash was misdirected to say the least -- it's already peaked. Between my poor initial delivery (which, to support Mom's point, was resolved with public discussion) and the rampant misinformation that's spread elsewhere in the meantime, a lot of people picked up pitchforks unnecessarily. Most have since put them down (silently, if you'll pardon the pun).

                      The regular who smurfs one week, gets warned for acting like an ass the next week, gets kicked for spamming the voicecomm the next week, and then ANOTHER week pursues his own novelty at the cost of his team (axe or not) will report that he got "banned for [axing an Onos|welding a skulk|whatever]", and he'll (I'm convinced, sometimes) have genuinely no idea what justifies his being treated that way unless you spell it out for him IN DETAIL at EVERY step, despite every education we've given him along with his peers, who aren't acting that way. And spelling it out for him in detail at every step is what's necessary if your first priority is /perpetually/ tolerating an ever-changing portfolio of unhelpful and selfish behavior, as you'll /next/ week, with that /same/ regular, be "censoring" ANOTHER nuanced nonsense that no one thought to put in writing before (despite existing community documentation that's "too much to read lol"). That has never been TG's modus operandi, it is not TGNS' priority, and it certainly is not my personal wont.

                      Meanwhile, 15 other players on the server are operating within expectations without incident.

                      Even STILL, to "protect" players who habitually offer these misaligned choices, we recently instituted a controlled, three-strike ban system. At each strike, you get explicit education about the letter AND SPIRIT of TGNS. If, in addition to a PLETHORA of /public/ instruction, this /private/, personalized instruction results in your /continuing/ to act as so few others do, the admins will enforce a realization the player arguably should have acted on alone: the player (who is, after all, the net result of his many behaviors) is misaligned with TGNS.

                      If enough habitual carriers of such behaviors exist so as to effectively enable another community, then -- and I promise I really mean this, FWIW -- eureka and best of luck.
                      Steam Community? Add me. | Free Remote, Encrypted Backup

                      Darkilla: In short, NS is pretty much really fast chess. With guns. Apophis: I haven't seen anyone say that SM's are better than non-SMs. Nordbomber: This is THE first server I've seen where either side can comeback from out of seemingly nowhere with the right teamwork. en4rcment: I have NEVER experienced the type of gameplay that I have found here. Nightly I am amazed at the personalities and gaming talent. Zephyr: Apophis is clearly a highly sophisticated self-aware AI construct that runs on a highly modified toaster oven in Wyzcrak's basement.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                        Originally posted by YerMom View Post
                        My question to you, and anyone who may be reading this...

                        If there is such a huge issue with the social engineering structure introduced into the server, why are there only 6 users in this thread while we have at least 700 signatures on the Primer thread?
                        We have 6 people in conversation, and 240+ views. People are watching. But most people play games to enjoy them, not engage in social debates. Those who are passionate about this community speak up, and there are many others passionate who will remain silent. Way it works.

                        I'm not interested in entering into a public debate anyway, I think administration has set the expectation of open dialog and response. It'd be simply unhealthy for this spill into the servers, the atmosphere, according to some, has already been affected by other factors.

                        People will remain silent because we use NS2 and this community as a form of escape and entertainment, and don't want real world problems to enter our sanctuary. A good server administration team does well to protect the sanctity of that realm, and this issue aside, it's imperative to say that this community's administration needs to be commended greatly. Heck, it doesn't feel like NS2 without the TGNS mod to me. So @Wyzcrack, it can't be said enough how appreciate we are for your efforts and contributions.

                        Thing is, you either acquiesce to the rules and let it go wherever it leads, or you leave and find greener (to you) pastures. IH, and many others before him, have found the more recent changes to be different than what they expected from TG. I personally lean toward their assessment, but I still hold hope the spirit of TG may swing back around in due time.

                        If there's one thing I've learned in my short life, everything is a cycle, and for everyone who doesn't like some of the current directions, others will hold to them as what makes them feel at home. -----

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                          I'd like to remind everyone involved of a few things before we go any further with this topic. Not to stifle, but only to consider:

                          banned <-- there are always 3 sides to every story. Only one of them is the truth. This is also a good example of rules that should be and are in place. We have even discussed name changing in this thread.

                          Is no more <--
                          Originally posted by rad
                          Look above. No concern for the sentiment, no understanding, just a very abrupt answer that sounds extremely condescending.
                          Wyz has been like that about comments for a LONG, LONG time. Please note the date stamps on these threads. It's not condescending. It's not "high and mighty". TGNS operates in a lot of ways like a business. We appreciate your business, we reserve the right to refuse you business, and, if you don't like our business, then we need to move on. There are no hard feelings. There is no insult or anger or injustice. We hate to see you go, but we have a business to run.

                          Why the Marines dont need the extra man. <-- What I find very, very, very interesting is evolution of concept in gaming. In TGNS today, I, more often than not, see the extra man go spectate. There is no rule for this. As far as the vast majority of us know, there is no precedent for this. But, as it turns out, there was a /HUGE/ debate about this back in the day in NS1. The concept that "I don't want to unbalance the game" is, by far, more evolved today than it was a long time ago. The correlation for this to the current thread is that... some of the things we do, and some of the things you are leaving because of, are things I would expect to become second nature to any TGNS regular. That's not to say it's right or wrong, but to say that you expect of me, and I expect of you, to act in respect to the entertainment of the people playing with you. That's to say that you /shouldn't/ be running at that Onos with an axe if you have other people near you who actually /want/ to fight that fight, regardless of chance of outcome. I think that, should you actually continue with your endeavor to create a more lax, yet relatively identical, replication of TGNS, you'll find that micromanaging things like this is going to become a necessity. Either way, you're going to have someone complain on one end of the spectrum or the other.

                          Er. Anyone know why I got banned today? <-- Imagine a TGNS that banned people for 24 hours for f-bombs. This used to be the case. I think it still should be, but that's personal opinion. This is also a good example of how a ban happens and is communicated about in a perfect world.

                          Rad --> Natural Selection - General Discussion - Page 96 <-- Page 96 of the TGNS General Discussion Forums dating back to 2004 (TEN YEARS AGO). Go, please. Everyone. These discussions happened even before I had found TGNS. Jack^ was there. Wyz was there. And there were a /LOT/ of people communicating there. This doesn't happen anymore. And I think that that is the reason why we have these frustrations. TGNS1, when it died, had the most enjoyable experience possible in FPS MP gaming at the time, imho. That was the culmination of years and years of social engineering and things like what is happening in this thread. The unfortunate part about NS1 was that that culmination only had about .... 6 months of practice? It took SO long to condition a group of people to the idea of respect in the heat of the moment (among other social concepts) that the real peak of performance was only truly met for what was likely 1/8th of the actual time of collective play. My efforts in this thread and others are to try to diminish that same effect on NS2.

                          The point to all of that ^ is to try and drive home the idea that without participation in this forum, we will have no consensus on rules. It's the same idea the government in the US runs on today. We, the people, submit our feelings. Those feelings are eaten by the giant corporate monster and ultimately ignored taken to our leaders and the solution is then decided based on the majority. Again, that's the idea. Without that vote, we can have no government. The voting booths are all sitting here, ready for you to strike that ticket.

                          Originally posted by Rad
                          Thing is, you either acquiesce to the rules and let it go wherever it leads, or you leave and find greener (to you) pastures. IH, and many others before him, have found the more recent changes to be different than what they expected from TG. I personally lean toward their assessment, but I still hold hope the spirit of TG may swing back around in due time.
                          ^This couldn't be /farther/ from the truth. The idea is that this forum, which is paid for by supporting members and maintained by what I'll assume is volunteers, is here for YOU and people like you to come and discuss these changes so that we can find a balance to the environment quoted here:

                          Originally posted by Primer
                          1) Create an environment conducive for mature gamers to enjoy the games they play without the everyday interference from the less-than-mature gamers.
                          That attempt has not been made here, which is evidenced here:

                          http://www.tacticalgamer.com/search....archid=5949169

                          I don't want to put anyone off, but a regular came to the forums with a problem, posted 3 times about it, and has since given up to go and create his own community. Again, good on him (in the most sincere way possible), but no one can be expected to find a working solution to a social engineering problem in 3 posts worth of content. There was no genuine effort to reinforce his enjoyment of the environment.

                          But... /BUT/... if we have to get down to it:

                          Originally posted by Primer
                          1) Create an environment conducive for mature gamers to enjoy the games they play without the everyday interference from the less-than-mature gamers.
                          Originally posted by Primer
                          2) Create an environment where there was mutual respect for your fellow gamers and where all members would be working together to advance the enjoyment of their hobby.
                          If your team is behind you, and they are shooting the Onos and communicating "chase the Onos" and you have an ax in your hand while you should be reloading, you crossed the line.. twice.

                          Originally posted by Iron
                          For example: "create a cohesive gaming community that consistently uses teamwork, communication, strategy and tactics" .. "But do not do so here, here, and there - or else"
                          Unfortunately, you got the wrong quote from the Primer.

                          Originally posted by Iron
                          I cannot say "GG" before the round has actually ended
                          I cannot say anything that discusses where our strategy or implementation failed that round before it has actually ended
                          I cannot say "Hold X to concede" to remind the blind
                          I cannot say "We only have 1 RT and our Hail Mary Pass of JPs failed"
                          I cannot say "End it aliens" to shorten the time to the next round
                          Any of these things, in the wrong context and said for the wrong reasons, can be considered in violation of:

                          Originally posted by Primer
                          1) Create an environment conducive for mature gamers to enjoy the games they play without the everyday interference from the less-than-mature gamers.
                          What you took out of context actually says,

                          Originally posted by Primer
                          3) Within the framework of the above two items, create a cohesive gaming community that consistently uses teamwork, communication, strategy and tactics to enhance everyone's enjoyment of Natural Selection.
                          Mom
                          Games lubricate the body and the mind. - Benjamin Franklin
                          Ever since the beginning, to keep the world spinning, it takes all kinds of kinds. -Miranda Lambert

                          You're a 34, Mom. Thirty. Four.
                          Forever Perplexed

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                            Originally posted by YerMom View Post
                            More often than not, I find that the people who have the most trouble with TGNS remind me of the people who would likely be getting kicked out of Walmart for crashing buggies into each other or hiding in coat racks.
                            Originally posted by Wyz
                            If enough habitual carriers of such behaviors (as he stated above, and almost all bad) exist so as to effectively enable another community, then -- and I promise I really mean this, FWIW -- eureka and best of luck.
                            This is why Mom. Disagree? I'm a coat rack kid or a troll. People can't speak up without being associated with extremes.

                            You can't have healthy dialogue if you use extremes as basis for discussion or belittle the other side.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Eggshells and Enjoyment

                              Holy wall of text.

                              I must be missing something here, so I'm going to ask point blank: Can anyone point to an example of a "fun destroying" problem that is NOT concede discussion (which has already been discussed as being an example of dialog and communication where mistakes have been made, and positive communication worked that out)?

                              Can anyone point to an example of a ban that was made publicly and is viewed as a result of this totalitarianism I am somehow blind to?

                              Comment

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