Hard Light Productions Forums

Announcements => Announcements => Topic started by: Axem on February 05, 2017, 12:19:52 pm

Title: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 05, 2017, 12:19:52 pm
Hello everyone! If you have some time, let's talk about HLP and what we can do to make it pretty awesome.

At some point in the near future, HLP will be switching to a new server. Now this probably doesn't mean a lot to you, we're not changing forums or anything. One thing that is going to change though is the front page. We're planning on making it a lot more welcoming and glitzy so people know exactly what HLP and FreeSpace Open are all about.

On a somewhat related note, I began a discussion with the staff, which later moved to the hosted project board, about HLP's future and ways to revitalize slower parts, making the forums easier to use, making content easier to find and play. A big problem HLP has is you really need to know what you're looking for, and where it is exactly. Its hard to come across something by chance.

Here is a list of changes (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1TnKVc94Vto0XXYbfGFtAi8bNrYCn73QDMtQJ2XYoDk0/edit) that have been proposed by me and other people in the first rounds of feedback solicitation. The intents of the changes are basically to 1) make content easier to find, 2) give the forum a bit of a spit-shine, and 3) develop ways to get people more involved and engaged.

So I'd ask you to give your best constructive feedback for these measures. Nothing is set in stone yet, and nothing is immediate yet. Let me know what you like, what you don't like, what's missing, your genius new forum layout structure, any questions, concerns, areas that need clarifying, or your experiences with how other communities have handled these things. I'd only ask everyone to be positive and build up ideas.

I'd also like to hear how much concrete interest there is in people joining the HLP Aide teams that are proposed. The idea behind the aide teams is to let people who don't have the time or patience to learn to mod or make campaigns to still contribute in someway to the community.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: LaineyBugsDaddy on February 05, 2017, 12:37:13 pm
I would like to add a suggestion. Could some effort PLEASE be made in fixing the built in search to the forum. If that isn't doable, how about a custom Google search targeted at this site in place of the current nearly useless search box. I'm not even sure that the advanced search works better than the quick search. I may do some testing and see if there are any differences.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 05, 2017, 12:49:40 pm
That is an amazing suggestion and I am embarrassed that I didn't take note of that before (mostly because it so bad that I forgot it had even existed). Hopefully we can do... something... about it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Droid803 on February 05, 2017, 12:53:36 pm
There was a good search function at one point.
And then it got replaced by google custom search or something, and it was bad.
And then it was replaced by something else, and it was worse.
Or maybe this is just nostalgia talking.
I was able to find stuff using search once upon a time. It hasn't been that way for ages.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on February 05, 2017, 01:26:33 pm
I agree 100% on the search.  I usually use a custom Google search; e.g. "wxlauncher site:hard-light.net".

Another thing that has been discussed before that i would like to see better implemented is better integration of "getting started" information for new players.  This was discussed a lot when Freespace came out on Steam, and improvements were made then, but I still see posts from brand-new players who are lost in the process.  The community is great about helping people through technical issues, but sometimes the first responses assume that the player knows something that they don't.  Goober's installer helps immensely with initial setup, and I know there are other installers in the works, but there are still questions about which executable to use, which launcher (or which version of wxlauncher), how to install mods not on the installer, how to play certain mods (select from the launcher? select from the campaign room? select individual missions from the tech room?), and other things.  Most of these topics are covered somewhere in the forums, but even with improved search they are difficult to find, and it is hard to know if you are using the most up-to-date information.

edit: corrected typo
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Novachen on February 05, 2017, 02:14:34 pm
Actually i would like to see overview page that show up with Mobile devices, and so that this one is much better useable than the current one.

And the forum itself lacks also some comfort for mobile use (too much scrolling, current discussions at the end of the page, no subscribing of topics etc.).
I do not think that anyone stays long on HLP with such devices.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: LaineyBugsDaddy on February 05, 2017, 05:09:52 pm
There was a good search function at one point.
And then it got replaced by google custom search or something, and it was bad.
And then it was replaced by something else, and it was worse.
Or maybe this is just nostalgia talking.
I was able to find stuff using search once upon a time. It hasn't been that way for ages.

I'm betting that the good search function was probably part of a different version of forum software. I'm not even sure what the HLP forums are powered by, but I know that the phpBB software has an excellent built in search, or at least there was a good one on a number of placed I used to frequent that used phpBB, such as the long defunct evula.org, which was the personal website of a guy who was a big fan of the Escape Velocity games. IIRC, the forum software was replaced at some point when I was still going by the screen name of CaptJosh.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JGZinv on February 05, 2017, 05:36:44 pm
HLP's on top of Simple Machines Forum 2.0.13 *points to the bottom right*
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 06, 2017, 03:38:55 pm
I like the helpful auto-save on the UWE forums (https://forums.unknownworlds.com/) (Natural Selection 2 / Subnautica) -- accidentally hitting back or crashing doesn't nuke your post.

I also like their Disagree / Agree / Awesome votes for each post, so you can respond to posts without just posting "Agreed" or "Amazing!" (it puts a small icon with your avatar on it at the bottom):  Example (https://forums.unknownworlds.com/discussion/147971/found-this-streamer-neebs-he-roleplays-also-talks-with-hq-actually-quite-entertaining/p1)

EDIT: Another feature I like is the ability to @mention a user (with an auto-complete pop-in).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 06, 2017, 08:17:49 pm
At the moment everyone seems to mostly be talking about forum features they'd like to have (which is fine) but we'd also like to discuss bigger changes. What can we do to attract more people? How can we make modding easier?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 06, 2017, 09:17:23 pm
but we'd also like to discuss bigger changes. What can we do to attract more people? How can we make modding easier?

Agreed, that should be priority.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Trivial Psychic on February 06, 2017, 09:48:30 pm
Just a thought, not necessarily on making modding easier, but making FREDding easier.  Obviously adapting the existing FRED for this purpose would be quite difficult, but with the possibility of wxFRED, perhaps it could  be done.  I know that advanced FREDders have developed some techniques to get the game to perform some interesting functions.  These functions may require some event arrangements that except for mission-specific data such as ship names, times, waypoints, etc. are always the same.  Perhaps wxFRED could be pre-loaded with something like event subroutines.  Someone needing said functions for their mission, would have an option within the right-click menu to call on these pre-made event templates, just like there is an option for different conditionals.  All they have to do is plug their own data into the default fields and suddenly a sequence it might take an experienced FREDder 20 min to set up, and a learning FREDder 2h to figure out how to assemble, can be done a like 2min.

Perhaps there could be a way to customize these.  Lets say that you use a specific type of event frequently in your missions, but it takes a while to set up.  You could create your own template, save it, name it, and call on it whenever you need it.
I know you could simply create a mission with your own templates in it, save it, and call it up whenever you want to create a mission with these functions in it, but this way you can combine as many or as few functions as you want without having to delete what you don't want to keep.  HLP could even keep an online repository of commonly used event templates, as decided by popular vote, and accept submissions for further event templates for later inclusion.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 06, 2017, 10:15:49 pm
No sense repeating two other threads' worth of posts at this point, but what I think bears repeating is that we could really use some community members who have a decent handle on the social media stuff that all the hip kids are using these days, because most of the staff are apparently old farts who are behind the times.  HLP does have a Facebook group and Twitter account, but they're definitely not being used to their full potential, and something like Instagram seems tailor-made for grabbing people's eyeballs.  So if you have any free time and would be willing to hit up some sort of daily social media barrage, please let us know!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: niffiwan on February 06, 2017, 11:01:04 pm
Just a thought, not necessarily on making modding easier, but making FREDding easier.  Obviously adapting the existing FRED for this purpose would be quite difficult, but with the possibility of wxFRED, perhaps it could  be done.  I know that advanced FREDders have developed some techniques to get the game to perform some interesting functions.  These functions may require some event arrangements that except for mission-specific data such as ship names, times, waypoints, etc. are always the same.  Perhaps wxFRED could be pre-loaded with something like event subroutines.  Someone needing said functions for their mission, would have an option within the right-click menu to call on these pre-made event templates, just like there is an option for different conditionals.  All they have to do is plug their own data into the default fields and suddenly a sequence it might take an experienced FREDder 20 min to set up, and a learning FREDder 2h to figure out how to assemble, can be done a like 2min.

Perhaps there could be a way to customize these.  Lets say that you use a specific type of event frequently in your missions, but it takes a while to set up.  You could create your own template, save it, name it, and call on it whenever you need it.
I know you could simply create a mission with your own templates in it, save it, and call it up whenever you want to create a mission with these functions in it, but this way you can combine as many or as few functions as you want without having to delete what you don't want to keep.  HLP could even keep an online repository of commonly used event templates, as decided by popular vote, and accept submissions for further event templates for later inclusion.

+1 for this - I really like this idea (even if it's probably longer term aspirational given wxFREDs current state).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 08, 2017, 09:06:59 am
So the global moderators talk about HLP's future and we get 59 replies on the topic and some good ideas. We ask the project heads and get 62 replies on that thread and even more positive ideas.

We ask the whole board - 13 replies. Seriously? No one has any other ideas how we can make this place better or attract more people?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 08, 2017, 09:36:32 am
Man I don't think it's ever going to be a good idea to shame board members into contributing
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 09:37:48 am
What would be the point in giving them to you, since you haven't delivered the last two times?

http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=90699.0

http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=92265.0

The avatar thread ended in August.

And as soon as in the thread the other day Flipside arrived to drop some truth, the panic button was hit and the thread locked. You are not interested in what we want.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 08, 2017, 09:56:03 am
Lorric, if you had read the google doc axem linked, you might have realized that Avatars are on the to-do list for the coming server move.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 08, 2017, 10:01:22 am
If you don't wish to be part of the process, no one is forcing you Lorric. Just don't complain later that no one asked you, or that we should have done something differently.

Man I don't think it's ever going to be a good idea to shame board members into contributing

I'm really not shaming anyone. I'm just honestly surprised that the response has been so low. The main reason we asked the other two groups first was to avoid getting swamped. I was expecting this thread to have far more replies than the other two put together cause if there is one thing I would have thought we could count on HLP to be good at is to have people tell the moderation staff where we're going wrong! :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 10:14:22 am
Would it do any good anyway? You already gave all the people that actually matter to you first dibs and made your plans before throwing us this bone.

And we can't complain if we don't like the changes after they've been implemented and we have experienced them? Nice.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Admiral Nelson on February 08, 2017, 10:15:24 am
Well, logically the project heads are the most committed people....

One thing I'd like to add is to make the General Discussion board visible only to logged in users.  I don't think HLP looks like a great place to talk about modding when all one sees in the recent threads list is political stuff.  There was some step I took to suppress General Discussion from showing up in my recent posts list -- perhaps this can be inverted such that one needs to "opt in" to this board instead.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 08, 2017, 10:19:09 am
No plans have been made. Nothing is set in concrete. No one says nothing can be changed later only that you can't complain that we should have done it the way you wanted when you didn't bother to tell us you wanted it that way.

Lorric, you're being given an opportunity here to make valid suggestions about HLP's future but you seem to want to waste it on forum drama that I doubt anyone else cares about.

One thing I'd like to add is to make the General Discussion board visible only to logged in users.

Can we instead hook it up to a peripheral that allows you to punch people in the face over the internet? :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 10:32:08 am
Like the "opportunity" you personally extended to me and several others in the first of the links on the other page? The one where you in the end actually gave us what we wanted then later stealthily took it away and locked the thread?

About forum drama, Flipside cared enough to return from his exile to speak, and was immediately locked down. I spoke with him afterwards and that basically pounded the final nail in the coffin of him returning here.

You already showed how much you care about our opinions on the running of this place with that :p in your earlier post.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: LaineyBugsDaddy on February 08, 2017, 10:50:39 am
Lorric, you have been a registered user for not even five years. Yes, you're on some projects, and that's great. But unless you've been around longer than that and this is not your first account, as is the case with me, you don't know half what goes on and you damn sure don't know what's what about the people who run this place. I think you should step back, take a deep breath, and think before you post again. I suspect they're getting tired of your attitude and attempts at bullying and it wouldn't surprise me one bit if you end up in the monkey cage for a while if you continue on your currently chosen path. Also, vague jabs about giving what was wanted and then quietly taking it away and locking the thread? Whatever dude. Quotes and links, or it didn't happen.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 10:56:53 am
Lorric, you have been a registered user for not even five years. Yes, you're on some projects, and that's great. But unless you've been around longer than that and this is not your first account, as is the case with me, you don't know half what goes on and you damn sure don't know what's what about the people who run this place. I think you should step back, take a deep breath, and think before you post again. I suspect they're getting tired of your attitude and attempts at bullying and it wouldn't surprise me one bit if you end up in the monkey cage for a while if you continue on your currently chosen path. Also, vague jabs about giving what was wanted and then quietly taking it away and locking the thread? Whatever dude. Quotes and links, or it didn't happen.
Bullying? ME? :lol:

THIS that I quoted earlier:

http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=90699.0
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 08, 2017, 10:58:43 am
So the global moderators talk about HLP's future and we get 59 replies on the topic and some good ideas. We ask the project heads and get 62 replies on that thread and even more positive ideas.

We ask the whole board - 13 replies. Seriously? No one has any other ideas how we can make this place better or attract more people?

I don't think I can add anything to the conversation that project heads or global moderators haven't already brought up. I would actually consider this a good thing!

Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 08, 2017, 11:03:25 am
Like the "opportunity" you personally extended to me and several others in the first of the links on the other page? The one where you in the end actually gave us what we wanted then later stealthily took it away and locked the thread?

About forum drama, Flipside cared enough to return from his exile to speak, and was immediately locked down. I spoke with him afterwards and that basically pounded the final nail in the coffin of him returning here.

You already showed how much you care about our opinions on the running of this place with that :p in your earlier post.

Ugh. Dammit Lorric. Not here. If you don't have anything useful to add, go away. I'm genuinely interested to see what people have to say about making HLP more accessible to new players/modders and your drama **** is actively deterring people. If you want to make a statement, go make a complaint thread in Site Feedback or quit some other projects like last time. This thread is not the place.

Surely a better forum search is not the only idea people have! What do people think about new ways to highlight content that Axem wrote in his document? Thoughts, opinions on ways that might work well? What about the HLP aid teams?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 11:11:02 am
...Fine.

Unless others talk about it. But if no one does, I won't pursue this any further here.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 08, 2017, 11:13:37 am
What do people think about new ways to highlight content that Axem wrote in his document? Thoughts, opinions on ways that might work well? What about the HLP aid teams?

Or how to do better promotion of the stuff we have here on Facebook / Twitter / Instagram etc.

Personally I know next to nothing about any of those. Certainly not what kind of things we'd have to do in order to get noticed. Does anyone here know?


On the other thread I suggested pushing harder on sites like 9Gag. Just opening up the gaming section I saw these (http://9gag.com/gag/a6byXQm?sc=gaming) two posts (http://9gag.com/gag/az8E5Am?sc=gaming) in the first five and I frequently see similar posts about Star Citizen or E:D. I can't see any good reason why we couldn't do the same with our games as long as we had a few people standing by to upvote.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Nyctaeus on February 08, 2017, 11:36:33 am
Well, logically the project heads are the most committed people....

One thing I'd like to add is to make the General Discussion board visible only to logged in users.  I don't think HLP looks like a great place to talk about modding when all one sees in the recent threads list is political stuff.  There was some step I took to suppress General Discussion from showing up in my recent posts list -- perhaps this can be inverted such that one needs to "opt in" to this board instead.
Maybe a new feature, configurable in profile settings and during registration? A big "What are you interested in?" section where members can mark what about they do want to be informed in "recent posts" section.

I don't use whole "recent post" thing at all currently. If there are any options to configure this, I would like to know where. I would also make it smaller and move the it under highlights. Maybe change title to "What's new?" or something like that.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 08, 2017, 11:57:24 am
Rock Paper Shotgun has written about FS2 before (https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/tag/Freespace-2/).  Getting more mods as free standalones and getting them plugged on the big websites (And making sure that your servers can handle the potential hits) would be a priority.  Websites don't usually mind writing things about free stuff. With that comes a caveat: Kotaku writing about fan made projects has gotten those projects C&Ds before, so you have to be carefull that your mod isn't suspectible to that. Social media is great for keeping in touch with people, but it won't mean anything if people don't know where to look to begin with. That's what the big websites are for. Also, try to see if you can't get yourself plugged on the Elite: Dangerous social media channels! You're not direct competitors, yet your biggest audience is there.

This is out-of-scope for this thread, but:

The second thing that springs to mind is accessibility. House of the Dying Sun did an excellent job with making a fairly complex game work with an XBOX pad. having a slick HotDS style pad control for FS2 is a feature that could ensure a lot of player intention. That or absolutely making sure that yes you can play with keyboard and mouse. Also, try to see if you can't get yourself plugged on *their* social media channels!

---

Look, if a significant portion of the website dislikes GenDisc (or rather, the political discussion on GenDisc), just shut down that thing outright. Gendisc is not neccesary for the operation of this website. If it actively hampers the goal of ensuring that HLP is a friendly and inclusive community (which it invariably is considering that it is a website that celebrates people that contribute to the creation of art), shut it down.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 12:16:42 pm
I've been perusing the 2017 HLP Proposals Page.

I don't agree with everything on there, but if it all got implemented I'd see it as a strong overall package that I think would be a real shot in the arm for this place.

Quote
Automatic generation of randomly taken topics taken from releases forums to make a (or several) 'campaign/ship/mod of the week' mini-highlight (Unsure of actual feasibility at the moment)

This made me think of something. Anyone who has installed a GOG game will know what happens in that process. As the installation takes place, it flashes up images of games with a punchy sentence or two summing up what the game is. I always thought that was really effective advertisement. They're not random either, like if you get a strategy title, there'll be many strategy titles pop up.

So if something similar could be implemented on HLP, with cycling images from various campaigns with punchy one or two line sum ups of what they are with clicking those images taking you to the release page... :pimp:
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 08, 2017, 12:32:39 pm
Yeah, one of the biggest problems HLP has is its so hard to find content. I think some form of intra-site advertising would help in that regard.

And which ideas do you not agree with? Do you think they are stinker ideas that need to be dropped or is there something that could be tweaked to be "good enough"?

The only idea I got any pushback on so far is consolidating some of the forums. I'm not too strongly tied to the idea, but its an idea that I was interested in hearing what people have to say.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on February 08, 2017, 12:45:05 pm
More potholes. Things like userpages having links to all releases that user is associated with. Some people put releases in their sigs but some don't. Every time I want to link BirdofPrey's radaricons beacuse they're a high-quality set of icons it's a massive PITA to find them. The wiki needs more potholes too, make wiki-walks much easier to do by just clicking on things. The ship and weapon pages are mostly fine but walk-through pages could use more potholes.

Also when fighters have stat sheets or tech descriptions from user-made campaigns that should be a link that takes you to that campaign's wiki page. They should also have links to release threads for those assets.


As for social media, maybe push on PCMR a bit? Old games modded to do things they were never supposed to often get on the frontpage there.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 08, 2017, 12:45:56 pm
I am absolutely in favour of consolidating the forums, to the point that I question the notion of giving the hosted mods their own subboards for public discussions. Why seperate all the activity and smear it out over dozens of boards? Have BP discussion threads sit alongside BTA discussion threads in the Freespace discussion forum, rather then giving them seperate fora that only have a few threads running active. Stuff like that makes this place look less active then it actually is, and it doesn't give new users the view of "What is hot these days?"
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 12:47:23 pm
Yeah, one of the biggest problems HLP has is its so hard to find content. I think some form of intra-site advertising would help in that regard.

And which ideas do you not agree with? Do you think they are stinker ideas that need to be dropped or is there something that could be tweaked to be "good enough"?

The only idea I got any pushback on so far is consolidating some of the forums. I'm not too strongly tied to the idea, but its an idea that I was interested in hearing what people have to say.
Nothing major. The consolidate part I have mixed feelings, but nothing there I think NO. I would have to see how it went, but overall I feel positive about it.

I don't like the name Arts and Talents. I think something less formal and more descriptive would be better for the name. But I do like the spirit of what the board is supposed to be going to be, if I understand it right. It seems like it would be somewhere for people to express themselves freely (with writing and other talents), but I worry that wouldn't be the case with the culture around here. If I think of something I'll post.

I think it would be good if anyone could do interviews and anyone could be interviewed.

Let's Play forum, hell yes.

It's funny, I bring up the avatars, but I almost certainly won't use one myself. I never have anywhere else. How "for everyone" will they be? It's amazing how often I see an avatar and think I bet that wouldn't be allowed on HLP.

Why lose the post count? It's not a big deal, but what was the reasoning for that?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 08, 2017, 01:01:30 pm
I am absolutely in favour of consolidating the forums, to the point that I question the notion of giving the hosted mods their own subboards for public discussions. Why seperate all the activity and smear it out over dozens of boards? Have BP discussion threads sit alongside BTA discussion threads in the Freespace discussion forum, rather then giving them seperate fora that only have a few threads running active. Stuff like that makes this place look less active then it actually is, and it doesn't give new users the view of "What is hot these days?"

This is a pretty radical idea... and I can see a lot of positives to this. Although private dev and testing forums should remain for those mods regardless.

This biggest downside here is release posts... all the major campaigns have a stickied release post (perhaps that's something that would be solved in tandem with the other ideas posted about making releases more visible). The big release thread in Missions & Campaigns doesn't give much info in the way of release year, mod size, and overall reception and/or quality... I don't find it terribly useful because it's too big and unwieldy. I suspect new users aren't going to jump in here and be looking for mods made in 2004. So some differentiation between New Releases, Highly Reviewed, and Past Gems would be helpful. There's also the sticking point of various levels of continuity in mods. Some players often make posts about which mods to play in which order for continuity/story and we have a few threads they could follow.. which isn't always clear unless you stumble upon the right page on the Wiki.

I will say a major positive is that, as a dev, if public discussions of my mod were expected to be in the general FS forum, I would be way more active on those boards. It would pull me out of my own BtA bubble more easily. Dunno if other devs have this problem, though. I also know that the hosted general boards have, for some, become a point of pride.. so I imagine that would also be a sticking point.

I'm not saying this idea is perfect, but it does have merit worth thinking about. Do new players look at the board list to figure out what mods are available anyway?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 01:05:33 pm
Quote
Automatic generation of randomly taken topics taken from releases forums to make a (or several) 'campaign/ship/mod of the week' mini-highlight (Unsure of actual feasibility at the moment)

This made me think of something. Anyone who has installed a GOG game will know what happens in that process. As the installation takes place, it flashes up images of games with a punchy sentence or two summing up what the game is. I always thought that was really effective advertisement. They're not random either, like if you get a strategy title, there'll be many strategy titles pop up.

So if something similar could be implemented on HLP, with cycling images from various campaigns with punchy one or two line sum ups of what they are with clicking those images taking you to the release page... :pimp:
For anyone unfamiliar with the GOG installer, this is what it looks like:

https://youtu.be/jCbR8NVYq64?t=28

You wouldn't necessarilly need to put a hosted project up there when they have their own boards. This feature would be to bring those other campaigns into the light. Digging them out of obscurity and putting them onto the dedicated releases board may well be the single greatest thing on the list, but this would help even more, while the people already here would gravitate into the releases board when they desire to play Freespace, that will catch outside eyes as well as the eyes of people already here. So there could be some merit to putting the big fish up there as well, but it wasn't what I originally had in mind. Maybe everything should just go on there, have like 50+ campaigns on there if possible.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 01:11:19 pm
I am absolutely in favour of consolidating the forums, to the point that I question the notion of giving the hosted mods their own subboards for public discussions. Why seperate all the activity and smear it out over dozens of boards? Have BP discussion threads sit alongside BTA discussion threads in the Freespace discussion forum, rather then giving them seperate fora that only have a few threads running active. Stuff like that makes this place look less active then it actually is, and it doesn't give new users the view of "What is hot these days?"

This is a pretty radical idea... and I can see a lot of positives to this. Although private dev and testing forums should remain for those mods regardless.

This biggest downside here is release posts... all the major campaigns have a stickied release post (perhaps that's something that would be solved in tandem with the other ideas posted about making releases more visible). The big release thread in Missions & Campaigns doesn't give much info in the way of release year, mod size, and overall reception and/or quality... I don't find it terribly useful because it's too big and unwieldy. I suspect new users aren't going to jump in here and be looking for mods made in 2004. So some differentiation between New Releases, Highly Reviewed, and Past Gems would be helpful. There's also the sticking point of various levels of continuity in mods. Some players often make posts about which mods to play in which order for continuity/story and we have a few threads they could follow.. which isn't always clear unless you stumble upon the right page on the Wiki.

I will say a major positive is that, as a dev, if public discussions of my mod were expected to be in the general FS forum, I would be way more active on those boards. It would pull me out of my own BtA bubble more easily. Dunno if other devs have this problem, though. I also know that the hosted general boards have, for some, become a point of pride.. so I imagine that would also be a sticking point.

I'm not saying this idea is perfect, but it does have merit worth thinking about. Do new players look at the board list to figure out what mods are available anyway?
Yes, it is interesting. I'm thinking a middle ground option would be best though. Have lots of subforums. So they're all there in one place under the Freespace Discussion banner, but not all mashed in together in one board. Because then lots of mods could get pushed out and be in a worse position than on their own boards. And we certainly don't want mods jockeying with each other for real estate in there.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 08, 2017, 01:20:38 pm
I am absolutely in favour of consolidating the forums, to the point that I question the notion of giving the hosted mods their own subboards for public discussions. Why seperate all the activity and smear it out over dozens of boards? Have BP discussion threads sit alongside BTA discussion threads in the Freespace discussion forum, rather then giving them seperate fora that only have a few threads running active. Stuff like that makes this place look less active then it actually is, and it doesn't give new users the view of "What is hot these days?"

This is a pretty radical idea... and I can see a lot of positives to this. Although private dev and testing forums should remain for those mods regardless.

This biggest downside here is release posts... all the major campaigns have a stickied release post (perhaps that's something that would be solved in tandem with the other ideas posted about making releases more visible). The big release thread in Missions & Campaigns doesn't give much info in the way of release year, mod size, and overall reception and/or quality... I don't find it terribly useful because it's too big and unwieldy. I suspect new users aren't going to jump in here and be looking for mods made in 2004. So some differentiation between New Releases, Highly Reviewed, and Past Gems would be helpful. There's also the sticking point of various levels of continuity in mods. Some players often make posts about which mods to play in which order for continuity/story and we have a few threads they could follow.. which isn't always clear unless you stumble upon the right page on the Wiki.

I will say a major positive is that, as a dev, if public discussions of my mod were expected to be in the general FS forum, I would be way more active on those boards. It would pull me out of my own BtA bubble more easily. Dunno if other devs have this problem, though. I also know that the hosted general boards have, for some, become a point of pride.. so I imagine that would also be a sticking point.

I'm not saying this idea is perfect, but it does have merit worth thinking about. Do new players look at the board list to figure out what mods are available anyway?

Hosted general boards are a point of pride but there's so many of them now that their value feels diminshed. I don't doubt that badges in some form should stay (because they are a nice way of linking to other mods!) and still can be a point of pride, but if you want a standalone board you should have a standalone install, like Diaspora has.

Yes, it is interesting. I'm thinking a middle ground option would be best though. Have lots of subforums. So they're all there in one place under the Freespace Discussion banner, but not all mashed in together in one board. Because then lots of mods could get pushed out and be in a worse position than on their own boards. And we certainly don't want mods jockeying with each other for real estate in there.

No, I don't think having lots of subforums does anything except move the problem. If you click on "Freespace discussion" and then are met with lots of subboards, you'll still have a segregrated community, but only one that looks slightly less segregrated from a distance.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 08, 2017, 01:24:48 pm
**** no don't consolidate mod boards. Imagine trying to tend your one-page release thread among 450 posts of JAD comics, complaints that Inferno isn't out yet, and a zillion threads from some BP ARG.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 08, 2017, 01:28:28 pm
**** no don't consolidate mod boards. Imagine trying to tend your one-page release thread among 450 posts of JAD comics, complaints that Inferno isn't out yet, and a zillion threads from some BP ARG.
Well the release thread would go into the releases board, but I agree with the overall sentiment. It would be a mess, and I could see people fighting with each other over the top of the page and raving about threads they don't like taking up valuable space.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 08, 2017, 01:37:04 pm
**** no don't consolidate mod boards. Imagine trying to tend your one-page release thread among 450 posts of JAD comics, complaints that Inferno isn't out yet, and a zillion threads from some BP ARG.

Imagine that kind of activity on the forum!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 08, 2017, 02:12:41 pm
But it's the same amount of activity either way. You click 'show unread posts' and you've got a list of topics. It doesn't matter how many subforums they're organized into.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 08, 2017, 03:36:11 pm
Developing on posts made on Spoon's BtA thread, I think FSO more than anything needs to break free of its moribund installation system. Inevitably this will mean wrangling with questions of intellectual property and risk management, but the fact that the vast majority of FSO content can't be obtained with a single, free download hurts adoption more, I think, than any other factor.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Buff Skeleton on February 08, 2017, 03:44:36 pm
Well, logically the project heads are the most committed people....

One thing I'd like to add is to make the General Discussion board visible only to logged in users.  I don't think HLP looks like a great place to talk about modding when all one sees in the recent threads list is political stuff.  There was some step I took to suppress General Discussion from showing up in my recent posts list -- perhaps this can be inverted such that one needs to "opt in" to this board instead.

Oh, NICE, thanks for pointing this out! Doing the same thing for my own sanity's sake.

For anyone else wondering, it's the Ignored Boards option under your Profile > Account Settings page. It filters boards out of the Show Unread Posts display but still leaves the board accessible otherwise.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 08, 2017, 04:23:40 pm
Hosted project forums is a tricky deal. Some projects benefit by having them (BP, WoD, Diaspora to name a few) and some not as much. What exactly is the point when a project or campaign needs one?

I think for the convenience of the user and the project staff you need around 4 'permanent' threads. A release thread, a troubleshooting thread, a discussion thread, and a media thread. All of these could be compressed into one (and they are in non-hosted releases), but it makes things more overwhelming once they get to a critical mass.

In my proposals I listed a ModDB style page for any hosted project (and maybe even just any campaign that wants one). I'm not sure just how doable that is though with SMF (there are portal plugins but are they nimble enough to do that?) or through the main site's CMS (which is being upgraded with the new server). If that's possible, do you all think that's an acceptable compromise of sorts? I mean I'm not sure myself. Does that really change anything in the grand scheme of things? You want to let active projects be noticed but not too fast moving for a gem to fall through.

It feels like our forum-centric foundation is quite the anchor in this dilemma.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: niffiwan on February 08, 2017, 05:32:23 pm
Developing on posts made on Spoon's BtA thread, I think FSO more than anything needs to break free of its moribund installation system. Inevitably this will mean wrangling with questions of intellectual property and risk management, but the fact that the vast majority of FSO content can't be obtained with a single, free download hurts adoption more, I think, than any other factor.

This may be true; but can we point to TC's (which lack that issue) as always being more widely downloaded & played? I also think that skirting with IP law is about the only way to truly sink HLP. How could we defend ourselves against a C&D from Interplay?

I think making the purchase & install of the GoG version of FS2 within the "installer" is the best way to continue here. Make it as simple as possible by linking to the website; and automatically installing (if possibly) from the downloaded .exe.

I am also... skeptical of the long term value of attracting people who can't be bothered to make a simple purchase, are we trying to compete with the simple games that tend to infest the app/play store? FSO gameplay is complex and unless we're thinking of super simplifying that I don't think we should try to compete.

Having said all that, one potential option for Freespace universe mods would be to base their data on the DEMO version of FS2. There's already work being on on making FSO compatible with the demo data. This could be used as a teaser into the rest of Freespace; i.e. an upgraded media demo with a small number of polished, short mods (or campaigns). Once you can show that off, those interested in the genre would surely not mind missing the cost of two-three coffees to buy retail FS2 and the gateway to much more content.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 08, 2017, 05:34:15 pm
There's already work being on on making FSO compatible with the demo data.
That work is done and has been in nightlies for, like, a week now.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: niffiwan on February 08, 2017, 05:52:14 pm
Sweet  :yes:  I just wasn't sure if that was the all the effort required.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 08, 2017, 06:28:40 pm
This gets into monetary territory, but would it be worth having regular contests for new comers to win a full copy of FS2? I'd be willing to donate $10 a month for that. It's not an idea that scales up well, but we don't get that many newcomers right now, so it might be easy to pull off in the short term.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on February 08, 2017, 07:24:59 pm
AFAIK trademark is more of a problem than copyright. You can make a campaign with MediaVPs and community assets only, none of which were made by Volition. But they could still claim IP if you tried to release it as a standalone.

But if WCS, TBP, and Diaspora could get away with it, a MediaVPs FSmod probably can too.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 08, 2017, 07:28:09 pm
If you want to attract more people to HLP, how about we make a list of what attracted each of us to it when we joined?

What I saw when I landed on HLP while looking for FreeSpace 2 mods was an amazingly supportive, friendly community dedicated to an awesome game, with continual releases of awesome new mods, complete with new storylines, models, game mechanics, and effects.  That, and the opportunity to be a part of helping others in this community, even if only in a small way.

Now, to bring that to the forefront -- what are the chances of convincing some popular YouTube and / or Twitch streamers that do let's plays to do a playthrough of the best we have to offer?  List of possible YT streamers to catch the eye of:

IGP (IndieGamePromoter)
{{High view count, Rebel Galaxy}}
TheXPGamers (Captain Shack)
SplatterCatGaming
SnillumMeister
{{High view count, Osiris: New Dawn}}
jacksepticeye
Markiplier

Now those last two are more of survival let's players. They seem to have a soft spot for sci-fi mixed with a little horror, though.  So if we can give them something that scratches that itch, they'll be all over it (and I do remember when I first got into FreeSpace, horror was never far from me when I was playing).

What would be the best completed, polished campaign to offer?  This might vary with each YouTuber, but you can probably get a feel for their tastes by looking at their playlists.

TL;DR: jr2 throws some random ideas around hoping they're actually good enough to make a difference.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 09, 2017, 07:44:48 am
My suggestion was(and is) an aggressive push on places like Reddit, Facebook, etc. Images and videos of campaigns and other things FreeSpace related.

The modding  community is great but it's only part of a greater community of FreeSpace (or any game).

It's going to take people to get out there and post and do videos, make comics and memes to push it out there. If those people don't exist in any great numbers, then we just toil away here making campaigns until there is no one left.

Redoing FRED and other things is great but there are SO many other games out there. Check Steam and elsewhere and see the glut of games. We need to get eyeballs here otherwise the work is just moving deck chairs.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 09, 2017, 08:03:38 am
I agree with the idea, but how? How do we push the game on Facebook, etc and get it attention?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 09, 2017, 10:13:23 am
Have a Facebook page running, have an HLP YouTube channel, have an HLP twitch channel. Link videos on reddit gaming sections. Go to other gaming sections (forums. reddits whatever) and have a FreeSpace question. I'm still amazed at how many people played a game that supposedly sold so poorly.

I and other people here have said they can do it.

Start a twitter hashtag if there isn't one for us already.

I run several Facebook pages and YouTube videos for small local NGOs. Reddit and twitch are places I've done stuff on, it's not hard to find people with these skills.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on February 09, 2017, 09:13:12 pm
A lot of companies have a Communications Director or a Brand Manager or a Social Media Representative.  The closest thing we have to that among the staff members is Axem who manages the HLP Newsletter.  Are there any HLP members who have social media brand experience?

Headdie is the member who set up the Reddit and Facebook groups, but he hasn't been too active on HLP recently.  Galemp also moderates the Reddit group, but he likewise has been pretty busy in RL.

I should probably take this question to Discord as well.  I got a few good leads there when looking for web-savvy people to assist Sandwich with the new main page.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 10, 2017, 09:18:06 am
Rock Paper Shotgun has written about FS2 before (https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/tag/Freespace-2/).  Getting more mods as free standalones and getting them plugged on the big websites (And making sure that your servers can handle the potential hits) would be a priority.  Websites don't usually mind writing things about free stuff. With that comes a caveat: Kotaku writing about fan made projects has gotten those projects C&Ds before, so you have to be carefull that your mod isn't suspectible to that. Social media is great for keeping in touch with people, but it won't mean anything if people don't know where to look to begin with. That's what the big websites are for. Also, try to see if you can't get yourself plugged on the Elite: Dangerous social media channels! You're not direct competitors, yet your biggest audience is there.

AFAIK trademark is more of a problem than copyright. You can make a campaign with MediaVPs and community assets only, none of which were made by Volition. But they could still claim IP if you tried to release it as a standalone.

But if WCS, TBP, and Diaspora could get away with it, a MediaVPs FSmod probably can too.

To my knowledge, the problem is the interface. We're still relying on the original interface art and game sounds, which means any mod that wants to be truly standalone has to redo them all - the MediaVPs won't help you.

However, I've always said that a problem is an opportunity in disguise. The community has already redone the entire fleet (okay, save a couple outliers like the Boadicea, blah). If we want more standalone mods - which I agree would be a great way to generate interest - why not start up a community-driven interface in the same spirit as the MediaVPs? Call it a "standalone mod starter kit" or something.

At that point, anyone could create a mod using only the FSO engine, which is clearly legal, and community assets, which are also clearly legal. IANAL, but that seems like a pretty safe way to get free FSO stuff out there. (I'm not sure what the legal status of community assets obviously based on retail assets are, however.)






At the moment everyone seems to mostly be talking about forum features they'd like to have (which is fine) but we'd also like to discuss bigger changes. What can we do to attract more people? How can we make modding easier?
Emphasis mine. A'ight, my perspective as a new user is that FSO is really not that well documented - or that the documentation is so difficult to track down as to achieve the same result. Digging through BP and BtA's tables has been a thousand times more helpful to me than the wiki. It's also made me aware that there are a bunch of options and flags that aren't documented anywhere - I can't remember them off the top of my head, but I can find them again if desired. It seems that there's no single authoritative reference, and the workaround is a variety of ad hoc forum threads that are impossible to find after the fact; an alternative statement is that the wiki is written more in the style of a man page than a learning tool, which wouldn't be so bad if there was a convenient replacement.

Or maybe there is and I'm just not finding it, blah.







Okay, and another thing. Barring a thread about mod policy or extremely unusual circumstances, admins and regular users should never argue about moderation policy in a public thread. Users get away with a lot of public JADE (http://outofthefog.website/what-not-to-do-1/2015/12/3/jade-dont-justify-argue-defend-explain)ing about moderation actions, and to an outsider, that makes the forum look dysfunctional and hostile. If you're trying to attract users, you don't want to give that impression. Maybe this doesn't seem like a problem to established forum vets who know the people in question, but to a newcomer, it's scary.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on February 10, 2017, 11:33:22 am
AFAIK the MediaVPs use remade interface art aside from the mainhalls. Medals, buttons, briefing icons, and logos are all custom. The HUD is stock but there are a few community-made HUDs out there, either as HD upgrades based on the retail HUD or new designs. Almost every big mod has its own mainhalls too so there's almost nothing retail about them. The few ships that haven't been upgraded yet like the Demon are retail assets but in all likelyhood nobody will notice.

As for the sounds.... yeah, they're completely retail. But really, this isn't about making standalone mods legal, whether they're legal or not is irrelevant since no mod teams can actually afford a lawyer. What's important is not getting sued and since free releases based on someone else's IP seem to be doing just fine on the "not getting sued" front I think free releases based on Freespace should be fine too.

And I think there are Freespace mods for other games like Homeworld that use those very same retail sounds and MediaVPs assets, and nobody's issuing C&Ds for those.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 10, 2017, 11:35:06 am
A lot of companies have a Communications Director or a Brand Manager or a Social Media Representative.  The closest thing we have to that among the staff members is Axem who manages the HLP Newsletter.  Are there any HLP members who have social media brand experience?

Headdie is the member who set up the Reddit and Facebook groups, but he hasn't been too active on HLP recently.  Galemp also moderates the Reddit group, but he likewise has been pretty busy in RL.

I should probably take this question to Discord as well.  I got a few good leads there when looking for web-savvy people to assist Sandwich with the new main page.

I would say a Communications Director or brand person but I would first start with the HLP Facebook and Youtube and twitch page, find some people to admin them and start figuring out what kind of content to post. The rest is just linking it in places like reddit and on facebook and members here helping drive it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 10, 2017, 12:32:54 pm
Do you remember the pre millennial layout? With a well organised download section?  I kinda miss that.
I refer you to my social media comments regarding fan base attraction and maybe a pic of the day on instagram or twitter?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on February 10, 2017, 01:17:15 pm
I posted this in the past:

Quote
Previous main pages:

HLP 1.0 (https://web.archive.org/web/20010813040435/http://www.3dap.com/hlp/)

HLP 2.0 (https://web.archive.org/web/20060601224226/http://www.hard-light.net/)

HLP 3.0 (https://web.archive.org/web/20090520074404/http://www.hard-light.net/)

The current main page is HLP 4.0.

Yeah, the HLP 1.0 site did have a pretty nice Downloads section.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 10, 2017, 01:21:38 pm
AFAIK the MediaVPs use remade interface art aside from the mainhalls. Medals, buttons, briefing icons, and logos are all custom. The HUD is stock but there are a few community-made HUDs out there, either as HD upgrades based on the retail HUD or new designs. Almost every big mod has its own mainhalls too so there's almost nothing retail about them. The few ships that haven't been upgraded yet like the Demon are retail assets but in all likelyhood nobody will notice.

As for the sounds.... yeah, they're completely retail. But really, this isn't about making standalone mods legal, whether they're legal or not is irrelevant since no mod teams can actually afford a lawyer. What's important is not getting sued and since free releases based on someone else's IP seem to be doing just fine on the "not getting sued" front I think free releases based on Freespace should be fine too.

And I think there are Freespace mods for other games like Homeworld that use those very same retail sounds and MediaVPs assets, and nobody's issuing C&Ds for those.[/quote]

Huh, alright.






I refer you to my social media comments regarding fan base attraction and maybe a pic of the day on instagram or twitter?
I'd like to throw Imgur onto that pile. It's certainly not as big as the two you mentioned, but it does have a front page that's seen by the vast majority of users, and it's relatively easy to get on (a well-curated album about an indie video game should have no problem).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 10, 2017, 02:09:27 pm
I think we need to pimp  :pimp:  big SCP projects not dependant on retail assets (wings of dawn, diaspora etc) blatantly at our target audience,  elite dangerous and star citizen players.  We need to find out where they congregate on social media and hammer that particular corner of the net.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 10, 2017, 02:53:53 pm
Section 2i: This, totally this.  I usually don't have to ask people where to find stuff after trying to use the search bar, unless it doesn't exist or exists on a totally different and unrelated site.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 11, 2017, 01:20:32 am
I would say a Communications Director or brand person but I would first start with the HLP Facebook and Youtube and twitch page, find some people to admin them and start figuring out what kind of content to post. The rest is just linking it in places like reddit and on facebook and members here helping drive it.

Well I set up a Diaspora Twitter account (https://twitter.com/DiasporaBSG) and right now I've got no one following who isn't on the team. So how to change that? I'm going to see about getting twitter links on the website in a little bit. But apart from that, any ideas?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 11, 2017, 04:21:22 am
Post at similar. Fire it at bsg boards, pages, feeds and groups. Here's a thought, is it able to be promoted on steam?

As before, ED and SC are the two big main players at the moment, jump on it and spread the love.   They'll eat all this delicious FREE content up, they just don't know it's there.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Black Wolf on February 11, 2017, 08:03:23 am
I am absolutely in favour of consolidating the forums, to the point that I question the notion of giving the hosted mods their own subboards for public discussions. Why seperate all the activity and smear it out over dozens of boards? Have BP discussion threads sit alongside BTA discussion threads in the Freespace discussion forum, rather then giving them seperate fora that only have a few threads running active. Stuff like that makes this place look less active then it actually is, and it doesn't give new users the view of "What is hot these days?"

This is a pretty radical idea... and I can see a lot of positives to this. Although private dev and testing forums should remain for those mods regardless.

This biggest downside here is release posts... all the major campaigns have a stickied release post (perhaps that's something that would be solved in tandem with the other ideas posted about making releases more visible). The big release thread in Missions & Campaigns doesn't give much info in the way of release year, mod size, and overall reception and/or quality... I don't find it terribly useful because it's too big and unwieldy. I suspect new users aren't going to jump in here and be looking for mods made in 2004. So some differentiation between New Releases, Highly Reviewed, and Past Gems would be helpful. There's also the sticking point of various levels of continuity in mods. Some players often make posts about which mods to play in which order for continuity/story and we have a few threads they could follow.. which isn't always clear unless you stumble upon the right page on the Wiki.

I will say a major positive is that, as a dev, if public discussions of my mod were expected to be in the general FS forum, I would be way more active on those boards. It would pull me out of my own BtA bubble more easily. Dunno if other devs have this problem, though. I also know that the hosted general boards have, for some, become a point of pride.. so I imagine that would also be a sticking point.

I'm not saying this idea is perfect, but it does have merit worth thinking about. Do new players look at the board list to figure out what mods are available anyway?

I know I'm coming to this late, but this is the post I made on the GM's thread on this topic:

This isn’t all I want to talk about on this thread, it’s just a case of not really having the time to sit down and type out a proper reply to a thread like this, so while I do have more thoughts, I feel like this (the hosted project forums) is an area where we can make a real change. In fact, I think we need to change what we mean by “hosting” a project entirely.

In the past, hosting was de facto necessary for making a good campaign. You needed the exposure through avatars and a website to attract talented people to your campaign to help you. You needed a forum to post things where people could comment to keep that interest maintained, and keep your own motivation up. And you needed a private forum to actually coordinate making the mod. Those basic requirements haven’t changed, but how we get/deliver them really has.

Everyone knew about Betrayal’s “Mystery Project” long before Exile got hosted, and there are lots of unhosted projects I’m following that just have a thread or two in various places. The trend away from exclusive models has really cut away the one of the big reasons for public forums for uncompleted projects (I actually think that that trend has been a bit of a two edged sword – yes, public models have made some amazing things possible, but it’s also harder to generate interest in your mod if you’re just throwing together a bunch of public ships).

Axem is right that most of the public forums don’t see much activity. My proposal is pretty radical, but I think it might be a good one: get rid of them. Archive the current ones, create a new “Released Campaign Discussion” forum, move any legitimately active threads into that forum (with an appropriate name change so they’re tagged for the correct campaign). There’s an argument to be made for keeping things like Diaspora and FotG separate, but at least all the ones for projects that take place in the FS universe can probably exist together.

This does several things.

1. Replaces a tonne of dead boards with one active board. That makes the index easier to navigate, and keeps HLP looking more active.

2. Promotes “splashover” from really active mods (basically BP, but to a lesser extent things like Inferno) to others. Currently, people following one mod may well never check the forums for others. A lot of people simply won’t see mods, screenshots, patches, even releases in one mods public forum unless they actively check it. They might not play a potentially cool campaign because they’ve not noticed the kinds of discussion it’s generating. Yes, with one merged forum it’s possible that really active mods (again, mostly BP) to crowd out others, but right now the benefits will outweigh the costs (and the risk of getting crowded out might convince mod makers to be slightly more active ensuring they have enough to post to prevent that from happening).

3. Potentially helps coordination between mods. If I’m looking for Frontlines related activity and I see a screenshot from Inferno with a ship I really like, I can ask to use it, or trade for it or something.
If we do that, though, I think we also need to reconsider what we mean by hosting a mod, and who we offer it to.

The most important thing that HLP hosting offers in 2017 is a private forum. When I first got the FL forum, it was immensely useful for coordinating with beta testers and helpers. It made an enormous difference, and unquestionably meant that the mod came out faster. Yes, there are alternative ways of doing that, but none so neat as HLP – I’ve been asked to join a Discord chat for a project I’m doing a little work on, and that doesn't seem as efficient as a forum, for one because real time chat is a terrible way to coordinate people across multiple timezones, and for another because accessing it on my phone is much less practical than a simple forum.

I think we should open up “hosting” in the form of private forums to just about anyone who wants it. Once they release they can have a project badge that links to wherever they want – a campaign website, facebook group, wiki page, youtube page, imgur gallery, big release thread… anything they want. If a project fails, big whoop - there’s a private forum with a few dozen posts that nobody can access instead of a dead public forum and badge pointing to a website that hasn’t been updated in three years, serving as a constant public reminder of the failed project.

It’ll be a tough sell, especially since not every thread will be able to be moved to the new forum, and it’ll take a bit of active moderation to ensure we maintain that distinction between released and unreleased content. For the record, I’m imagining three forums:

Unreleased campaign discussion: Basically the current campaigns forum.

Campaign Releases: A highlight style board, each thread has a picture (possibly using that mod that was linked earlier to show that picture on the forum index) and a link to the main release/discussion thread. These would just list the campaigns (I’d also like the opportunity for a visible rating system or upvote system to ensure the highest quality campaigns were the easiest to find, but that discussion was had a while ago and my opinion was in the minority there), replies could even be disallowed and a cap placed on the number of characters to ensure people kept the discussions where they belong.

Released Campaign discussion: This would be where you post the campaign release threads, where you could discuss released campaigns etc. The result of merging all the hosted project forums.

Complexity and potential issues aside, I think there are lots of benefits, not the least being the end of any kind of two-tier system for hosted and unhosted projects – the only thing that will matter is released and unreleased, and the quality of what you produce.

Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Black Wolf on February 11, 2017, 08:13:43 am
I think we need to pimp  :pimp:  big SCP projects not dependant on retail assets (wings of dawn, diaspora etc) blatantly at our target audience,  elite dangerous and star citizen players.  We need to find out where they congregate on social media and hammer that particular corner of the net.

I agree, to a point. ED and SC are a target audienbce, but I also think we need to consider everyone who might be a potential player. Places like these:

https://www.reddit.com/r/spacesimgames/
http://spacesimcentral.com/forum/
https://www.spacegamejunkie.com/forums/

Are all kind of like HLP in that they're active...ish. Probably less active, on average, than HLP, or roughly the same. But they do serve a slightly different, overlapping community. I think we should consider sites like this, not just for a quick "Hey, look at how cool FSO is!", topic. We should be posting campaign release topics at sites like this as well - a regular reminder that Freespace Open exists, there's a vast library of content, with more being created all the time, and it's probably one of the most actively modded space sim in the world right now.

Might not bring in a tonne of people, but I think it's a place to start.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 11, 2017, 09:26:48 am
I would say a Communications Director or brand person but I would first start with the HLP Facebook and Youtube and twitch page, find some people to admin them and start figuring out what kind of content to post. The rest is just linking it in places like reddit and on facebook and members here helping drive it.

Well I set up a Diaspora Twitter account (https://twitter.com/DiasporaBSG) and right now I've got no one following who isn't on the team. So how to change that? I'm going to see about getting twitter links on the website in a little bit. But apart from that, any ideas?

Well you start using hastags that are vague in terms of gaming, space sims, mods and that stuff but also specific ones to your group (#freespace). Tweet your game or videos or whatever at people who do game reviews, lets plays whatever. The more people are talking to each other with and about the game, it increases the people who can see it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 11, 2017, 12:10:49 pm
From little acorns do mighty oaks sprout.
The hard light Facebook page could use a bit of a pimp too...
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 11, 2017, 01:39:54 pm
Well hell find however runs it and make me an editor and we can spruce it up a bit. I literally did not know we had one.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 11, 2017, 01:45:36 pm
Unrelated note, who runs the HLP twitter? It's active but isn't using hashtags
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on February 11, 2017, 02:04:58 pm
Well hell find however runs it and make me an editor and we can spruce it up a bit. I literally did not know we had one.

I've PMmed headdie.

Unrelated note, who runs the HLP twitter? It's active but isn't using hashtags

It's set up to automatically broadcast news and highlights.  I'll ask Sandwich; he might be the one that created it.  Looks like it was MjnMixael.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 11, 2017, 02:43:08 pm
I don't know how the twitter bot works but hopefully we can get some extra tweets in there to push our work because it's not going anywhere as is.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 11, 2017, 04:03:18 pm
The Facebook pagewas set up by me, Headdie (i think?) Does a sterling job of posting monthly newsletters and updates.It's got a fair few people on it, only no discussions.


Edit-

Well I've only gone and had my status revoked somehow :wtf:



Double edit-
https://m.facebook.com/groups/8990888471?view=info


Here's the group, not the page which had more members and been going longer.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: DahBlount on February 11, 2017, 04:42:56 pm
Anyone remember this?
'

The good:
Shows off lots of assets and features.

The bad:
Has several sound and visual issues that have been fixed in recent builds.
(not that big of an issue really)

The ugly:
It's a fustercluck which doesn't do anything to actually exemplify the action players would encounter under typical conditions.

An official trailer which gives viewers an actual idea of what they may typically encounter when playing FSO would be an excellent way to get the game out there. However, trying to create a trailer by committee or group opinion will end up going nowhere because people are going to argue about what should and shouldn't be in it.

It'd be a fairly sizable undertaking, but I think we could do it IF we could come to some sort of consensus on what we as a community want to portray ourselves and the game as in an orderly, meaningful manner.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: niffiwan on February 11, 2017, 07:26:06 pm
Anyone remember this?

Yep; love it!

The ugly:
It's a fustercluck which doesn't do anything to actually exemplify the action players would encounter under typical conditions.

I think that's by design, it fills an need and fills it superbly. However, there is more than one need so....

An official trailer which gives viewers an actual idea of what they may typically encounter when playing FSO would be an excellent way to get the game out there. However, trying to create a trailer by committee or group opinion will end up going nowhere because people are going to argue about what should and shouldn't be in it.

It'd be a fairly sizable undertaking, but I think we could do it IF we could come to some sort of consensus on what we as a community want to portray ourselves and the game as in an orderly, meaningful manner.

Yep; I recall Droid (iirc) bringing this vid to my attention (the last time we were all discussing better marketing for HLP  :lol:)


And I think this is probably hits the 2nd need you're talking about square in the face, ~show the gameplay~. The downside is that the current trailer is a mission, just play & record it and it's up to date with the latest eye-candy. This sort of trailer requires a lot more work each time it's created to splice together video, sync it with a song, etc. Maybe this is a proposed-aide-team kinda project, a small team could agree on a set of visual settings to use; then all record clips of the main FS2 campaign, and then (probably one video editing lead) puts it all together. To make it simple you could try reusing the same music record similar clips, or you could try scripting a new set of clips. Maybe there's enough footage on youtube already from LPs, etc? Maybe add gameplay from different mods... although we also don't want arguments about which mods get included & which not.

My only another comment is that it's perhaps a little long for a gameplay trailer. But meh, even having the original updated with the latest eye-candy would be great.

edit:

Huh, well look at what the bots of Google found for me just after looking at both trailers again; a new gameplay trailer from 2016.  German language version, and a bit dark IMO, but still!

Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 12, 2017, 12:13:57 am
I am absolutely in favour of consolidating the forums, to the point that I question the notion of giving the hosted mods their own subboards for public discussions. Why seperate all the activity and smear it out over dozens of boards? Have BP discussion threads sit alongside BTA discussion threads in the Freespace discussion forum, rather then giving them seperate fora that only have a few threads running active. Stuff like that makes this place look less active then it actually is, and it doesn't give new users the view of "What is hot these days?"

This is a pretty radical idea... and I can see a lot of positives to this. Although private dev and testing forums should remain for those mods regardless.

This biggest downside here is release posts... all the major campaigns have a stickied release post (perhaps that's something that would be solved in tandem with the other ideas posted about making releases more visible). The big release thread in Missions & Campaigns doesn't give much info in the way of release year, mod size, and overall reception and/or quality... I don't find it terribly useful because it's too big and unwieldy. I suspect new users aren't going to jump in here and be looking for mods made in 2004. So some differentiation between New Releases, Highly Reviewed, and Past Gems would be helpful. There's also the sticking point of various levels of continuity in mods. Some players often make posts about which mods to play in which order for continuity/story and we have a few threads they could follow.. which isn't always clear unless you stumble upon the right page on the Wiki.

I will say a major positive is that, as a dev, if public discussions of my mod were expected to be in the general FS forum, I would be way more active on those boards. It would pull me out of my own BtA bubble more easily. Dunno if other devs have this problem, though. I also know that the hosted general boards have, for some, become a point of pride.. so I imagine that would also be a sticking point.

I'm not saying this idea is perfect, but it does have merit worth thinking about. Do new players look at the board list to figure out what mods are available anyway?

I know I'm coming to this late, but this is the post I made on the GM's thread on this topic:

This isn’t all I want to talk about on this thread, it’s just a case of not really having the time to sit down and type out a proper reply to a thread like this, so while I do have more thoughts, I feel like this (the hosted project forums) is an area where we can make a real change. In fact, I think we need to change what we mean by “hosting” a project entirely.

In the past, hosting was de facto necessary for making a good campaign. You needed the exposure through avatars and a website to attract talented people to your campaign to help you. You needed a forum to post things where people could comment to keep that interest maintained, and keep your own motivation up. And you needed a private forum to actually coordinate making the mod. Those basic requirements haven’t changed, but how we get/deliver them really has.

Everyone knew about Betrayal’s “Mystery Project” long before Exile got hosted, and there are lots of unhosted projects I’m following that just have a thread or two in various places. The trend away from exclusive models has really cut away the one of the big reasons for public forums for uncompleted projects (I actually think that that trend has been a bit of a two edged sword – yes, public models have made some amazing things possible, but it’s also harder to generate interest in your mod if you’re just throwing together a bunch of public ships).

Axem is right that most of the public forums don’t see much activity. My proposal is pretty radical, but I think it might be a good one: get rid of them. Archive the current ones, create a new “Released Campaign Discussion” forum, move any legitimately active threads into that forum (with an appropriate name change so they’re tagged for the correct campaign). There’s an argument to be made for keeping things like Diaspora and FotG separate, but at least all the ones for projects that take place in the FS universe can probably exist together.

This does several things.

1. Replaces a tonne of dead boards with one active board. That makes the index easier to navigate, and keeps HLP looking more active.

2. Promotes “splashover” from really active mods (basically BP, but to a lesser extent things like Inferno) to others. Currently, people following one mod may well never check the forums for others. A lot of people simply won’t see mods, screenshots, patches, even releases in one mods public forum unless they actively check it. They might not play a potentially cool campaign because they’ve not noticed the kinds of discussion it’s generating. Yes, with one merged forum it’s possible that really active mods (again, mostly BP) to crowd out others, but right now the benefits will outweigh the costs (and the risk of getting crowded out might convince mod makers to be slightly more active ensuring they have enough to post to prevent that from happening).

3. Potentially helps coordination between mods. If I’m looking for Frontlines related activity and I see a screenshot from Inferno with a ship I really like, I can ask to use it, or trade for it or something.
If we do that, though, I think we also need to reconsider what we mean by hosting a mod, and who we offer it to.

The most important thing that HLP hosting offers in 2017 is a private forum. When I first got the FL forum, it was immensely useful for coordinating with beta testers and helpers. It made an enormous difference, and unquestionably meant that the mod came out faster. Yes, there are alternative ways of doing that, but none so neat as HLP – I’ve been asked to join a Discord chat for a project I’m doing a little work on, and that doesn't seem as efficient as a forum, for one because real time chat is a terrible way to coordinate people across multiple timezones, and for another because accessing it on my phone is much less practical than a simple forum.

I think we should open up “hosting” in the form of private forums to just about anyone who wants it. Once they release they can have a project badge that links to wherever they want – a campaign website, facebook group, wiki page, youtube page, imgur gallery, big release thread… anything they want. If a project fails, big whoop - there’s a private forum with a few dozen posts that nobody can access instead of a dead public forum and badge pointing to a website that hasn’t been updated in three years, serving as a constant public reminder of the failed project.

It’ll be a tough sell, especially since not every thread will be able to be moved to the new forum, and it’ll take a bit of active moderation to ensure we maintain that distinction between released and unreleased content. For the record, I’m imagining three forums:

Unreleased campaign discussion: Basically the current campaigns forum.

Campaign Releases: A highlight style board, each thread has a picture (possibly using that mod that was linked earlier to show that picture on the forum index) and a link to the main release/discussion thread. These would just list the campaigns (I’d also like the opportunity for a visible rating system or upvote system to ensure the highest quality campaigns were the easiest to find, but that discussion was had a while ago and my opinion was in the minority there), replies could even be disallowed and a cap placed on the number of characters to ensure people kept the discussions where they belong.

Released Campaign discussion: This would be where you post the campaign release threads, where you could discuss released campaigns etc. The result of merging all the hosted project forums.

Complexity and potential issues aside, I think there are lots of benefits, not the least being the end of any kind of two-tier system for hosted and unhosted projects – the only thing that will matter is released and unreleased, and the quality of what you produce.


I somehow doubt this will actually go anywhere and I do not think it's THE solution. But I am so for this. There are so many benefits.. and if anything has helped SCP become sort of a "closed family" it's our adherence to internet forum traditions from the early 2000s.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 12, 2017, 12:15:00 am
Oh, and yes. I run the Twitter account. I'll see about posting more and/or giving Axem/the future social team access to post stuff.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 12, 2017, 12:34:43 am
You'll never take me alive! I'll never talk! NEVER!

Also HI I'm a solo mod developer so basically just FREDer. One problem I have is that I want to have a dev blog for my thing, which would be cool considering the sort of hacks I have to do to get these missions working, but I also already have an announcement thread that also doubles as a demo release thread, and I worry that it would kinda get cluttered if I posted it there, but then if I make a new thread I'm littering the forums and argh. Maybe in the FREDding section? I dunno I think a in-development-mods section would be kinda neat.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 10:18:51 am
I somehow doubt this will actually go anywhere and I do not think it's THE solution. But I am so for this. There are so many benefits.. and if anything has helped SCP become sort of a "closed family" it's our adherence to internet forum traditions from the early 2000s.

Please god no.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 12, 2017, 10:33:02 am
I too do not think that consolidating the public mod boards into one giant megaboard will help matters.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 11:41:19 am
There's a great way to see all cool posts in all cool forums already! Everyone should use it! Click 'show unread posts since last visit'!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 12, 2017, 11:58:28 am
I'm not going to harp on the unpopular idea.. but there isn't a way to "show unread mod/campaign posts from all mod teams & general forum". It's all or nothing. (with the exception of ignoring specific boards I'm uninterested in.)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 12:07:32 pm
Delete gendisc imo.

I would not want to lose project-specific boards because they produce some of the best threads I've read on this forum.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 12, 2017, 12:34:10 pm
Delete gendisc imo.

I would not want to lose project-specific boards because they produce some of the best threads I've read on this forum.
Agreed
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 12, 2017, 01:19:19 pm
While that is true, they also create their own little closed ecosystems that a new member, or even an established community member, could easily overlook entirely.  If I'm a newbie scrolling through the forum index, how is a folder named "Blue Planet" or "Wings of Dawn" going to jump out at me in any way without external prodding?  Unless I happen to see some sort of external post or highlight, I'll never think to look there.  Or as a personal example, I (very ashamedly) haven't yet played either WoD or the latest portion of BP, so I pretty much avoid those folders entirely for the sake of not being spoiled by a bunch of people talking about things I haven't experienced yet.   (Plus the War in Heaven discussion thread is an over 250-page threadnaught that's essentially impenetrable to new readers.)  As a result I know I've missed out on learning about really cool new features that both of your projects have introduced.  The Unread Posts listing isn't a great answer either, since then you're getting a huge unsorted list of everything that goes on, so a bunch of threads are going to slip through the cracks there too.  (It's also incompatible with how I tend to browse forums myself, but that's beside the point.)

Honestly, if we do need to keep the hosted folders (or at least a few of the more active ones), I would still highly suggest that we keep the idea of an All Releases folder that's a home for everything the community produces, coupled with a tagging mod to make it easy to sort by category.  And even if your project has its own individual folder, you'd still be highly encouraged to post a thread there if you released new content.  Even if it's a locked thread with a single-line blurb and a redirect to your own folder's thread, at least it means that someone can conceivably just follow that one folder and still keep on top of everything that's going on.  Think of it like a Highlights folder, only open to every content creator to post.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 12, 2017, 01:31:57 pm
If you delete Gen Disc then where would the trumps and "celebrity X is dead" posts live?

Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 01:34:49 pm
There are no closed ecosystems created. You click on them to see what they're about. That's open.

If you're worried about impenetrably huge threadnaughts, then don't shove every hosted project into one forum where you'd need to have "BP Main Thread" "JAD Main Thread" and constantly bump topics like the BP Library instead of just leaving them pinned.

I really don't think this forum has any problem with mod discovery. The problem is getting people installed and playing.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 12, 2017, 01:37:13 pm
Figured this was worth a separate post: whatever we do, we DESPERATELY need a way to consolidate and standardize FSO installation instructions.  This thread (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93163.msg1841611#msg1841611) is the most recent example of a new user managing to find an outdated wiki page or thread that mentions long-obsolete FSO versions.  I changed the link there (and added a bit about the old Launcher not working post-Windows 7), but I know I'm not going to remember that particular page when the next version is released, and that goes for any other threads that link to 3.7.4 too.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 12, 2017, 01:48:41 pm
There are no closed ecosystems created. You click on them to see what they're about. That's open.
But why would I bother clicking on the BP folder in the first place if I don't know anything about it?  What's going to draw me down there?  The people who post in any hosted project folder are going to be almost exclusively people who have already played or are playing that project, not necessarily new players.  The main point of this initiative is to improve the site so that content is far easier to discover and access and play.  And yes, the new front page design will hopefully go a long way towards accomplishing that, and an increased social media presence will be big, but even within the context of the forum itself we should be able to direct people to one place to keep up with major updates and new content.  I understand and agree with your point that dumping every single BP thread in amongst every other project's threads isn't a good way to go, but there's definitely a happy medium that can be found there.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 01:52:31 pm
People discover new mods by using the FSO Installer.

You might click on the Blue Planet subforum because you're scrolling through a list of hosted projects and clicking on what looks interesting. Or maybe you read Battuta's Guide to Finding Your Next Campaign in general FS.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 12, 2017, 02:19:38 pm
People discover new mods by using the FSO Installer.

You might click on the Blue Planet subforum because you're scrolling through a list of hosted projects and clicking on what looks interesting. Or maybe you read Battuta's Guide to Finding Your Next Campaign in general FS.

Psssshh

That guide was written by some yahoo and hasn't been updated in forever.   :p

(not-so-subtle-poke)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 12, 2017, 02:27:25 pm
Right now the Installer provides a largely context-free lengthy checklist of download options which may or may not have a plaintext More Info description.  If you're installing them manually, there's little to sell one set of downloads over another, and if you install everything automatically, there's nothing prompting you to actually select and play one over the other.  This isn't to disparage what Goober has done with the Installer in any way, because it's a fantastic tool, but right now it's simply not designed with marketing purposes in mind.  When you look at something like Steam, there are all sorts of automatic recommendations generated based on games similar to those you've played recently, or games your friends have played recently, or highly-reviewed titles, or lists that certain personalities have curated, or so on.  Perhaps eventually the Installer or the Knossos project or both can incorporate some sort of ratings or recommendations system, but for right now we need to rely on external means to get people to play content.

As for your (excellent) thread, sadly we know how often people actually read stickies. :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 02:29:29 pm
Personally I think a more comprehensive search feature is the most important, my first experience here:

Quote
Hmm, having an issue with X and questions about Y ... oh look a forum ... wow that's big, better use the search.

*does a few varied and quite unsuccessful searches*

Really?  I find it hard to believe that no one has asked about or looked for what I'm looking for, maybe it doesn't exist, but I'm persistent so ...

*creates account and asks questions, getting a link to what I was looking for*

And the problem here is, your more casual or less directly interested initial players are going to go "tch, they don't have any info for me and I can't figure out how to get this working, guess I'll play something else..."

EDIT: Also ... why can't you have both the project subforums and an auto-aggregation feature that populates a pinned main thread from each project into a master project release and info forum?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 12, 2017, 02:38:16 pm
So I'm about to run out.. but I had sort of a random thought that may or may not go anywhere...

Is the Steam Workship not an option for us in terms of mods? Obviously there's some issues with the Steam version of FS, but is there nothing we can do there? Or is it even worth it to try and use Steam when it's flooded with thousands and thousands of games?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 02:39:48 pm
People discover new mods by using the FSO Installer.

You might click on the Blue Planet subforum because you're scrolling through a list of hosted projects and clicking on what looks interesting. Or maybe you read Battuta's Guide to Finding Your Next Campaign in general FS.

Psssshh

That guide was written by some yahoo and hasn't been updated in forever.   :p

(not-so-subtle-poke)

Write a blurb, I'll stick it in.

Right now the Installer provides a largely context-free lengthy checklist of download options which may or may not have a plaintext More Info description.  If you're installing them manually, there's little to sell one set of downloads over another, and if you install everything automatically, there's nothing prompting you to actually select and play one over the other.  This isn't to disparage what Goober has done with the Installer in any way, because it's a fantastic tool, but right now it's simply not designed with marketing purposes in mind.  When you look at something like Steam, there are all sorts of automatic recommendations generated based on games similar to those you've played recently, or games your friends have played recently, or highly-reviewed titles, or lists that certain personalities have curated, or so on.  Perhaps eventually the Installer or the Knossos project or both can incorporate some sort of ratings or recommendations system, but for right now we need to rely on external means to get people to play content.

As for your (excellent) thread, sadly we know how often people actually read stickies. :p

How would a giant mishmash forum with topics for each release be different from a list of forums for each release.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 02:47:18 pm
How would a giant mishmash forum with topics for each release be different from a list of forums for each release.

Because then they've got a (hopefully) up to date list of what has been worked on, starting with the most recent releases and therefore what people in this day and age would likely consider the most active project.

Personally, I think the best approach would be to customize the forum system so each major project board admin can mark or otherwise categorize the release thread, then just make a sort of "virtual" releases board that aggregates all these.  Fewer changes, less work, stick it at the top and we all win. ;)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 12, 2017, 02:49:40 pm
I think merging the mod boards would be idiotic but it is true that the default presentation of all the different boards, 90% of which are dead, is really bad and ruins accessibility for new users who likely aren't logged in and don't know to use 'unread posts' anyway.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 12, 2017, 02:57:16 pm
So I'm about to run out.. but I had sort of a random thought that may or may not go anywhere...

Is the Steam Workship not an option for us in terms of mods? Obviously there's some issues with the Steam version of FS, but is there nothing we can do there? Or is it even worth it to try and use Steam when it's flooded with thousands and thousands of games?
AFAIK the only FSO-related things we could potentially put on Steam would be standalone TCs containing no IP from another company, and it would have to be freeware. If I were Valve, I would not exactly be jumping at the chance to include that in their library.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 12, 2017, 03:01:12 pm
Can I just interject something which just crossed my mind?

My primary (almost exclusive save for highlights) way of discovering new topics is to click "Show unread posts since your last visit"

And the new replies is my second click,   those two rule the roost.

Can anyone think of a reason or logical positive reason to add another one that says new/latest releases or some such?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 12, 2017, 03:01:43 pm
So I'm about to run out.. but I had sort of a random thought that may or may not go anywhere...

Is the Steam Workship not an option for us in terms of mods? Obviously there's some issues with the Steam version of FS, but is there nothing we can do there? Or is it even worth it to try and use Steam when it's flooded with thousands and thousands of games?

I don't know enough about Steam's installation procedures to be sure about this, but I am very certain that there are strict rules for not being able to interfere with files that you do not own.

That being said, with Steam Greenlight going away and Valve opening the platform for more or less everyone, I think it would be worthwhile to investigate whether or not we can get FSO on there (that's assuming that the initial fee for registration isn't too high for us). That way, we'd have a standardized platform we could use to distribute FSO, wxLauncher, and all the mod content we can produce, all that would be required of the user would be to copy over FS2 retail content from an existing install.

I am not entirely sure about the legality of this, but at this point, I am rather inclined to just go ahead with something like that and see if we can get some sort of reaction out of Interplay or whoever holds the rights now.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 12, 2017, 03:08:59 pm
How would a giant mishmash forum with topics for each release be different from a list of forums for each release.
Like hack-wizard said, it provides one-stop shopping for pretty much everything the community is working on, whether it be entire campaigns/mods or single missions or models or scripts or whatever, and it doesn't involve having to hop between a half-dozen individual project or FREDding or whatever subfolders in order to find what's been released.  This would absolutely be contingent on installing an SMF tagging mod, so if someone was interested in just full campaign releases, they could click on the "Campaigns" tag and see everything listed there conveniently. (If you haven't seen it before, the Minecraft forum (http://www.minecraftforum.net/forums/mapping-and-modding/maps) provides a good example of what it looks like in practice.)  It would be super-ideal to have every hosted project's release threads auto-aggregated into a folder like this, but barring that, a simple crosspost would work just fine too.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 03:22:47 pm
Okay, tagging aisde, how is that different from the Highlights forum?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 03:24:08 pm
Okay, tagging aisde, how is that different from the Highlights forum?

People don't usually know to look directly in a specifically named subforum
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 03:38:23 pm
For sure, I'm happy to see Highlights made more visible! But that's a matter of placement, not content.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 12, 2017, 04:44:47 pm
The problem that people seem to be trying to solve is 'how can we design the site so that new users are naturally funnelled towards active discussions in the community'. The current site layout is incredibly bad at this. Merging all the boards would be a significant improvement but in almost every other way it'd be disastrously terrible.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 04:47:38 pm
Perhaps you could create a "veiw" of sorts that displays select threads or thread sets without removing them from their actual locations?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 04:48:54 pm
Delete gendisc, 'show unread posts'
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 12, 2017, 04:49:18 pm
How about a preview of new posts scrolling by?  Sort of like we have on the bottom of the main forum site, but scrolling, and floating at the bottom?  (In other words, it stays fixed, scrolling new posts inside itself, while you scroll through the forums, until you pick a sub-forum, at which point it limits itself to new posts from that sub-forum).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 04:51:04 pm
Delete gendisc, 'show unread posts'

Perhaps showing recent posts as well?

How about a preview of new posts scrolling by?  Sort of like we have on the bottom of the main forum site, but scrolling, and floating at the bottom?  (In other words, it stays fixed, scrolling new posts inside itself, while you scroll through the forums, until you pick a sub-forum, at which point it limits itself to new posts from that sub-forum).

I like this idea.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Black Wolf on February 12, 2017, 05:11:09 pm
Delete gendisc, 'show unread posts'

Show unread doesn't work for people who aren't logged in, and we don't know how much of our traffic that accounts for.

Also, merging project forums wouldn't remove the functionality of Show Unread Posts - that would work just the same as it does now. All that would change would be a bunch of minimally active forums would be replaced with a smaller number of more active forums. Combine that with a tagging system (which I hadn't thought of, but that's a great idea) and the ability to filter by tag, and you have the best of both worlds.

And Gen Disc. (or something like it) should, and almost certainly is, staying. We're trying to grow HLP's userbase, not drive people away.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 05:20:27 pm
I am sure Gendisc attracts a lot of users for its many fruitful and fascinating discussions of non-FreeSpace related topics. Wait hang on

Project forums go over my dead rancid pale wormlike body.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 12, 2017, 05:23:20 pm
And Gen Disc. (or something like it) should, and almost certainly is, staying. We're trying to grow HLP's userbase, not drive people away.
You say that like Gen Disc. doesn't actively drive people away (and if you were planning on saying it does not, there are people who only use IRC and stay off the forums specifically because Gen Disc. is a ****hole who would disagree with you).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 12, 2017, 05:27:09 pm
Hmm yes deleting practically the only forum anyone even goes to anymore in HLP: A good idea that will bring more activity and people to HLP
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 05:33:42 pm
Hmm yes deleting practically the only forum anyone even goes to anymore in HLP: A good idea that will bring more activity and people to HLP

This, but unironically. GD contributes nothing you can't get at higher quality elsewhere. And it produces a lot of stupid drama.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 05:36:14 pm
Wow, I can't believe my favorite game is still alive? What's hot? What's everyone talking about? Donald Trump and someone concern trolling about the gays. Oh.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 12, 2017, 05:36:31 pm
Even if Gen Disc is eliminated, it shouldn't be DELETED. It should remain what was posted there even if no further posting will be happening.

I have really mixed feelings about removing access to gen disc. Part of me thinks as long as even just two people want it to stay, it should stay. Part of me thinks there should be a vote on it and if ending gen disc comes out on top, it should be locked for a period to let people see how they feel about the absence of it, then have another vote to decide if that becomes permanent or if it gets opened back up.

Normally it would be an easy decision, don't take away something from someone else just because you don't like it, but that place is toxic and could be actively harming HLP keeping it going...

And as for "Arts and Talents", I might not like that name, but **** me, I can't come up with a better one.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 12, 2017, 05:42:08 pm
the problem is if you remove gendisc you substitue "donald trump and concern trolling the gays" with "maybe a couple lets plays, and a single mod"

which honestly will probably be a significant improvement but /shrug

if we kill donald trump and concern trolling the gays we should probably let the fun threads stay though, HLP threat down is cool, there's probably 1 or 2 other good threads in gendisc. maybe a no politics rule would be cool
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 05:43:25 pm
Gaming discussion is good.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Admiral Nelson on February 12, 2017, 05:48:26 pm
Wow, I can't believe my favorite game is still alive? What's hot? What's everyone talking about? Donald Trump and someone concern trolling about the gays. Oh.

I actually laughed out loud upon reading this as it describes me, basically, during most of my recent absence.  Whenever I did check on the board I saw exactly that, and quickly closed it again.  I'm sure new people looking at the site would do the same -- what good is a freespace board in which nobody talks about freespace? :)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 05:50:11 pm
Better dead than ged
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 12, 2017, 05:51:10 pm
Gaming discussion is good.
not empty quoting this
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 12, 2017, 06:00:24 pm
I am sure Gendisc attracts a lot of users for its many fruitful and fascinating discussions of non-FreeSpace related topics. Wait hang on

Project forums go over my dead rancid pale wormlike body.
And Gen Disc. (or something like it) should, and almost certainly is, staying. We're trying to grow HLP's userbase, not drive people away.
You say that like Gen Disc. doesn't actively drive people away (and if you were planning on saying it does not, there are people who only use IRC and stay off the forums specifically because Gen Disc. is a ****hole who would disagree with you).

Gen Disc is what you make of it.  So if you don't like it, stop.  When someone posts something that grinds your gears, either politely disagree, politely inform them they aren't being polite, or stay off the air.  "If you can't say nothin' good, don't say nothin' at all!"  You guys are acting like Gen Disc is this alien entity, when it is quite literally what all of you have to offer that's not on-topic, be that for better or worse.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 06:01:51 pm
It's actually alien ****.

When was the last time you played a new release!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 12, 2017, 06:02:55 pm
And we are judged by the face we show newcomers.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Thisisaverylongusername on February 12, 2017, 06:11:45 pm
I mostly agree with eliminating gendisc, however I am concerned that if you do delete gendisc, discussions that used to go in gendisc would find places elsewhere on the forums.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 12, 2017, 06:25:16 pm
I can understand the concerns with gendisc - especially given the anecdotes concerning Admiral Nelson et al. - but I don't think simply excising it is the way to go, either. In this day and age, it's fairly expected that some sort of off-topic section will exist. What I'd suggest is, rather than deleting it, fragmenting it. Have a "casual discussion" section for not-FS funtimes, an a "serious discussion" section for more serious topics. There are two advantages here. First, it makes expectations clear - you don't go into the casual section for a political debate. Second, if there's concern about existing politics threads turning off new users, the serious section can simply be hidden from the activity list. If someone asks why, we just tell them it's known to get heated. There'd probably be some way to opt-in to seeing it, perhaps automatically once you've posted there or something, but that's the idea.





Come to think of it, just hiding gendesc from the activity list might be a better idea. Either way, this also addresses verylong's concern.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 12, 2017, 06:30:46 pm
It's actually alien ****.

When was the last time you played a new release!

The last time I had a rig that wasn't a) a laptop and / or b) using Intelgrated graphics.  So, five years? Six?  I've got a new rig now, but the R9 280X I bought still under warranty with a "bad BIOS flash" actually had a bad BIOS flash + the user replaced the old thermal paste with a bucketload of thermal past and shorted the board out, which I found out when I sent it in for an RMA after flashing the correct BIOS didn't fix it.  And my laptop heats up to the point that I worry it's going to eventually damage something, and until I got this new desktop, that was my only computer.

So, yeah, not fiddling around with attempting to get FSO working on Intel.  Plan on getting a new card in a month or two.

And we are judged by the face we show newcomers.


... That's literally what I just said.  You get a sampling of what HLP is by looking at Gen Disc.  Stop being so grumpy, it's not necessary to allow that side through even when vehemently disagreeing with someone.  There's this attitude of "you can't tell me what to do, it's the Internet and you can't make me I work on important **** here".   It's the same issue you run into with all-volunteer emergency agencies like fire departments and EMS squads.  They don't show up for a scheduled shift, what are you going to do, take them off the schedule?  Those places also feature high turnover and a lot of politics that frankly doesn't belong in a professional force, which is what they are supposed to be.

The solution is simple: enforce the rules, even when it hurts.  The "I work on important mods / I fix the FSO engine" is no excuse for being rude.  The #1 rule on the discussion boards should simply be "be nice".  You probably couldn't even put "treat others the way you'd want to be treated" because then you'd get "well if I was a pile of loser shiyt I'd hope someone would kick me in the teeth!"

The other problem is dogpiling.  This is hard to quantify, but... opposing views that are in the minority have a tendency to accrue about ten responses from the defending 'team' for every point they make, and the 'offense' guy (or maybe two) is expected to answer every single objection point by point, and then they are met with another onslaught.


"But that's because they're wrong, and we're right!"  You don't have to dogpile to prove that.  Just state "I see how you could think that because z, y, and x, but because of c, b, and a, I disagree"

I mean, you can do what you want, but a lot of times it feels like /r/politics in Gen Disc.  Free example: Dragon.  You can disagree with his ideas about Monarchies being a superior form of government without thinking he's dense for believing that, just because he didn't melt before your awesome display of reason and intelligence.  To be frank, he's treated quite rudely.  And you think he deserves it, so therefore you're in the right.  Which, I'm afraid, as far as your public and inter-personal relations goes, makes you wrong.

If you can't get a handle on this problem ▲ then, in fact, Battuta may be right, you may have to no longer allow for any discussion about non-gaming related topics, and you may even have to muzzle that, see the Gamergate discussion.  The only topics allowed are strictly mod-related, because HLP does not play well with others.  (I'm speaking in terms of the possible future here; I personally think it's ridiculous that the whole talented lot of you aren't more laid back, I mean, it's the Internet, amirite?!)

Or maybe I'm just crazy.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Nyctaeus on February 12, 2017, 06:56:49 pm
C'mon! Lots of people come here for general discussion, especially to flame others and hate their beliefs [so called cultural exchange of views]. That's the best way to rid off your frustration :D! If gendisc is deleted, lots of people will loose sense of life! Besides, it's a true mine of laugh. All these people talking about muslim migrants and gay rights... They are not discussing to share beliefs. They all do this to prove other side they are right. Only them! Never the other side.

Legendary quote from polish comedy comes to my mind: My reason is the most mine, and yours is less your than mine is mine.

Enough irony. TLDR: leave our /b as it is. Lots of discussion here, especially political and religion-related are a mess, but if we take people their /b, they will make /b somewhere else. The only thing it needs is more rigorous moderation, more warns and other pleasures. Sooo... My two cents. You may continue, guys.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 12, 2017, 07:01:55 pm
Relevant: http://lifehacker.com/the-importance-of-empathy-in-everyday-life-1791961488
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 12, 2017, 07:07:10 pm
The problem with setting a groundwork for honest political debate is that this groundwork is in itself political, as is this discussion. Having a groundwork that operates on the notion that people are respected equally means that you have immeaditely shut down all the political discussion that revolves around not respecting people equally, which as it turns out is an awfull lot of politics (the being empathic about the unempathic problem). The political discussions on Gendisc have a tendency to be rather US centric, but the rhetorics used in the US in itself are completely antithetical to having a positive, friendly and constructive community. Hostile views towards LGBT are part of some political and/or religious leanings, but espousing those views means espousing that hostility, either directly or indirectly, towards the forum members who those views happen to be about.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 12, 2017, 07:09:47 pm
You're not crazy, jr2. It's just that this isn't a vision shared by the majority of people here unfortunately.

I would be interested to know if anyone who participates in gen disc feels they get a return on their investment of time and energy, and crucially, for a reason other than "pwning" or hurting people, or feeling they need to go to battle for their beliefs, etc.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 12, 2017, 07:11:13 pm
The absurd degree to which the Twenty Questions thread took off is IMO a good case for the argument that HLP still has the userbase and interest to talk about Freespace plenty.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 07:15:24 pm
I would say no non-Freespace or FSMod related politics ... one could argue that there are plenty of politics in Freespace and the mods here, just not the stupid drama kind.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 12, 2017, 07:23:02 pm
Guaranteed unpopular idea... Specific, moderately high post count and/or account age to even see GD...
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 12, 2017, 07:26:03 pm
if we take people their /b, they will make /b somewhere else
One, that's not how human psychology works (if you take away their /b/ people may just stop posting /b/-grade content), and two, as long as "somewhere else" is someplace other than HLP, then HLP is still better off.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 07:27:58 pm
Guaranteed unpopular idea... Specific, moderately high post count and/or account age to even see GD...

Not sure about that on its own, but if it were merely that you could not post to GD or create a thread without moderator review until you're past the mandatory period ... that might just be ok.  I've seen sites that do this, very good at keeping trolls at bay, since they are usually looking to provoke people from the start and in most cases do not have the patience or drive to create enough legit, non-troll posts to get in.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 12, 2017, 07:30:05 pm
 
Guaranteed unpopular idea... Specific, moderately high post count and/or account age to even see GD...

I disagree with that, as it doesn't fix the fundamental conflict with having a free-speech-based board on what is otherwise a safe space for freespace gaming, modding and critique of all of those.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 12, 2017, 07:34:18 pm
I get the arguments for and against gen disc. Personally I don't use it and I try to concentrate my time more on the FreeSpace specific boards. But I know there are people who don't play anymore and they still have a connection to this site and still like to chat or discuss politics. I know its been suggested in the past, but I really think we should have a "politics/current events" board that's viewable and postable by invite only. And by invite I just mean "apply for politics board access" and unless your name was TrollyMcTrollerson, you'd get access right away. So newcomers and guests wouldn't see the intense possibly off-putting discussions.

Regarding merging of projects boards:
Half of respondents seem to like it, the other half don't (but at least everyone agrees HLP is a mess, so that's cool). Personally, I don't think that merging every project board would help.   There's just too much content to either archive or move or merge. I think we'd need a near unanimous agreement by the active project leads to get merge and get rid of their boards.

And with everyone posting here, is there anyone interested in joining an HLP Aide team that I suggested? Because we can talk all day about reorganizing the forum, but if we actually want to get people to play and to mod, we need to make the game and mods easier to install and have references easier to find. In a perfect world, you wouldn't need the forum to find new content. It'd be on the installer or on the wiki. The forums should be for discussion or engagement with modders and other like-minded players.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on February 12, 2017, 07:40:57 pm

Come to think of it, just hiding gendesc from the activity list might be a better idea. Either way, this also addresses verylong's concern.

Or maybe making gendisc a members-only area that you need to opt-in to access?  Like Battuta, I use the "show unread posts from last visit" (it is actually one of my browser home tabs).  I generally enjoy the gendisc board, but yes, it can be an ugly place at times.  This is a passionate community with some incredibly brilliant people, and while some may go too far at times, even the heated discussions are fascinating.  I tend to be more conservative than is the norm here, and i disagree with a lot of what i see and get offended by some, but i still learn from it.  I don't want to do away with it, but i can see the arguments for not taking tourists to that part of town.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 07:42:43 pm
Unfortunately, though having to request access to politics may help, it may not be enough.  I doubt a troll would be like, "Hi, I'm BiggestTrollInTheGTVA and I wanna access the politics board!"  More likely they'd just open an account with in innocuous username, request access, then troll the place in.

Like I said, I've seen sites that require moderator approval for new users for so many posts and/or a certain period, that usually works rather well, though not making it initially visible or as visible might also help
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 12, 2017, 07:56:17 pm
Trolls aren't a problem anyway. Next to no one shows up here just to troll.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 12, 2017, 08:15:54 pm
WHIYL and HLP threat down are good threads that should not be deleted or locked away

Trumpety nuttery trumpety trumps and The Gays are
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: hack-wizard on February 12, 2017, 08:17:56 pm
WHIYL and HLP threat down are good threads that should not be deleted or locked away

Trumpety nuttery trumpety trumps and The Gays are

Oh come on, don't you like trumpet players?  :P

Wait, I know what you're getting at ...  :lol:
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 12, 2017, 08:34:43 pm
Okay, tagging aisde, how is that different from the Highlights forum?
The massive difference is that the Highlights forum is just a bizarre read-only link depository made to tie into a site display.  The idea being floated here is that this FS Releases (or whatever you want to call it) would essentially replace a few separate folders: Missions and Campaigns, Modding, Scripting, possibly even the FRED folder.  The point has been raised repeatedly that even some long-term contributors have missed out on what other contributors are working on, so putting any actual content creation under one roof will help raise visibility across the board.  If someone's working on a new campaign and sees a sweet new model release in the thread right below theirs, maybe they'll find a place for it, you know?

And personally I don't think completely ditching project folders would work out very well, at least not those that garner enough activity on their own.  But I do feel like cross-linking with any sort of generalized release folder would only be a good thing.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 12, 2017, 09:07:18 pm
One solution might be to simply make it option. Projects that want their own board can have one, projects that would prefer a communal one go that way. After six months we can take a look and see if things worked.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jg18 on February 12, 2017, 10:04:28 pm
I admit I would be a little sad to see GenDisc go (I look at it when really bored :nervous: ) but I agree it shouldn't be effectively the first thing visitors see. I like the idea of making it forum members-only. In the interest of not clogging up new users' view of the forums, I also like the idea of having it in users' ignored boards by default, effectively making it opt-in. (It's in my ignored boards, for example.) Requiring a minimum post count and/or moderator approval to post in GenDisc sounds reasonable or at least worth trying.

Not sure on keeping/removing mod-specific boards, although agreed that having a lot of inactive public boards doesn't look good. It does sound potentially useful to have at least links to campaign release threads, if not the actual threads themselves, all in one place. By links it could be something akind to the "Moved" marker thread that gets added when a moderator moves a thread to another board. Maybe a read-only list of threads, with each thread linking to a campaign's release thread. Perhaps "released campaigns" and "released content" (assets etc.) should be in two separate lists (separate read-only boards?).

ANyway my $0.02.


EDIT: Or since sifting through a board can be a pain, maybe two release threads where each release campaign/content gets its own postlink  in the corresponding thread? Another thought. EDIT 2: Or maybe that would actually be more annoying than one thread for each campaign/content item?

EDIT 3: Or maybe two threads where each thread is one big post full of release thread links?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 13, 2017, 12:21:15 am
If we want to shape what new intakes are guided towards we need to shape how they're greeted when they enter the forum as a new user. Is there a way to have a wiki "welcome page" pop up for unregistered users?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 13, 2017, 08:16:21 am
Well if we're directing people at specific projects or mods, do we want to take them directly to that mod or whatever or bring them to a home page/splash page.

I may be the only one who thinks this way and that's fine for me, but getting people to sign up on the forums is the last great step for all this. People should be able to come here, find out about the game, where to get it, download mods or whatever and peace out without signing up. That way the people who do sign up are at least partway committed to leaving comments or working on their own projects.

In my opinion the less hoops we make people jump through, the better it is for getting eyes on pages. So as little effort in them getting what they want after they see it ~somewhere~ is best I think.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 13, 2017, 09:02:22 am
Well getting the websites sorted out is probably a good idea. At the moment the forums are used for things that the website should be handling. If you don't want to sign up, you shouldn't have to. You should be able to say thanks via facebook or Twitter or any of those avanues. You should be able to download the game either from the HLP website itself (or an easily understandable release thread if for some reason you can't do that).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on February 13, 2017, 09:06:14 am
Figured this was worth a separate post: whatever we do, we DESPERATELY need a way to consolidate and standardize FSO installation instructions.  This thread (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93163.msg1841611#msg1841611) is the most recent example of a new user managing to find an outdated wiki page or thread that mentions long-obsolete FSO versions.  I changed the link there (and added a bit about the old Launcher not working post-Windows 7), but I know I'm not going to remember that particular page when the next version is released, and that goes for any other threads that link to 3.7.4 too.

Here is another example - while helping someone out, I accidentally screenshotted my own mistakes, and i've been around for a while!
http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93159.msg1841780#msg1841780

In a perfect world, you wouldn't need the forum to find new content. It'd be on the installer or on the wiki. The forums should be for discussion or engagement with modders and other like-minded players.   

While the forums are a great place to introduce, discuss, and support new content, I agree they are not the best place to find it.  Sorry if I am repeating ideas presented elsewhere, but maybe instead of looking thru multiple forums for release threads, have a release list in the wiki.  Each wiki entry then should have the latest download files and instructions on how/where to install, how to launch (e.g. Does clicking “Play” launch the mod directly, or do you need to select a campaign? Is it only playable as a mission in the tech room simulator, and if so how do you get to that?), and links to the release thread and/or any support/discussion threads created for that mod.


Well getting the websites sorted out is probably a good idea. At the moment the forums are used for things that the website should be handling. If you don't want to sign up, you shouldn't have to. You should be able to say thanks via facebook or Twitter or any of those avanues. You should be able to download the game either from the HLP website itself (or an easily understandable release thread if for some reason you can't do that).

I hadn't thought about it before, but I almost never use the website. I just use the forums, and sometimes the wiki.  But someone new coming in is likely going to be seeing the website first, and maybe the forums later.  The options across the top are useful, but not very prominent.  I think i am conditioned to ignore the top of a web page, since it is often an ad or the banner for the site.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 13, 2017, 09:11:47 am
HLP Greenlight?

Sorry, had to. But maybe not a bad idea.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on February 13, 2017, 09:19:25 am
HLP Greenlight?

Sorry, had to. But maybe not a bad idea.

Greenlight is being killed. (http://steamed.kotaku.com/valve-kills-steam-greenlight-1792225494)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 13, 2017, 09:51:09 am
Accidentally removed my post.

Gendisc should be merged with Art and Gaming. Art is almost dead, so it might bring some life back to that forum. Gaming is active enough where it will provide some non-politics discussion in Gendisc. Win win for everyone.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 13, 2017, 10:20:22 am
It should not be.
I check the gaming part on a semi regular basis, I avoid gendisc at all times. Merging them just throws something decent in a cesspool.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 13, 2017, 10:26:25 am
Yeah, whether you go there or not, I doubt that mixing any forum with gen disc will improve either forum.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 13, 2017, 02:36:56 pm
HLP Greenlight?

Sorry, had to. But maybe not a bad idea.

Greenlight is being killed. (http://steamed.kotaku.com/valve-kills-steam-greenlight-1792225494)

Yes, that was the joke, as they say. Allowing users to put projects on Wikis means they can flood it or otherwise game the system. A moderated page requires, well, moderation. And that may be a job not too many people want.

Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on February 13, 2017, 03:25:10 pm
HLP Greenlight?

Sorry, had to. But maybe not a bad idea.

Greenlight is being killed. (http://steamed.kotaku.com/valve-kills-steam-greenlight-1792225494)

Yes, that was the joke, as they say. Allowing users to put projects on Wikis means they can flood it or otherwise game the system. A moderated page requires, well, moderation. And that may be a job not too many people want.



I hadn't had enough coffee yet to get that it was a joke :)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on February 13, 2017, 03:47:45 pm
I've added General Discussion to the list of boards excluded from Show Unread Posts.  Currently, that is the only public board that is excluded.

The thread tagging feature was previously mentioned in the staff discussions.  There is an SMF mod that enables tagging, and that's something I can install even before the move to the new server.  Do we want to go ahead and try that out?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AndrewofDoom on February 13, 2017, 06:29:31 pm
I would like to see that, Goober. It would be nice to add. Is it possible to have it be retroactively added to existing threads?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Black Wolf on February 13, 2017, 07:47:04 pm
I am sure Gendisc attracts a lot of users for its many fruitful and fascinating discussions of non-FreeSpace related topics. Wait hang on

Project forums go over my dead rancid pale wormlike body.

Thank you for this useful and constructive post. :rolleyes:

One solution might be to simply make it option. Projects that want their own board can have one, projects that would prefer a communal one go that way. After six months we can take a look and see if things worked.

Optional is... less than ideal. The plan more or less relies on the idea that all Freespace related campaign discussion is together, to concentrate activity and promote spillover of interest and activity between projects. If made optional, the most likely outcome would be the most active projects maintain their own forums because they think they need/deserve it, and the least active maintain their own because nobody bothers to merge them.

That way you get neither the spillover benefits nor the cleaner main index benefits (I.e. Fewer dead forums).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 13, 2017, 08:42:33 pm
Make it opt out. i.e your forums get merged unless you say not to. It might be worth just asking the project heads to report in with their points of view to see now who would be up for it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 13, 2017, 09:03:18 pm
But what's the point then? It still leaves the boards in pretty much the same position. Some mods are discussed and released in the general board and others have their own board because reasons. It's not any more or less intuitive for new people.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 13, 2017, 09:23:15 pm
Yeah, but we can't force people to integrate their boards who don't want to, can we? That's why I'm asking the project heads. Is Blue Planet the only mod that isn't willing to try this out?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 12:38:24 am
I am sure Gendisc attracts a lot of users for its many fruitful and fascinating discussions of non-FreeSpace related topics. Wait hang on

Project forums go over my dead rancid pale wormlike body.

Thank you for this useful and constructive post. :rolleyes:

I presume you actually read the thread and considered the arguments already presented before posting. Right? You were taking care to be useful and constructive?

Yeah, but we can't force people to integrate their boards who don't want to, can we? That's why I'm asking the project heads. Is Blue Planet the only mod that isn't willing to try this out?

I mean, I assume Diaspora, TBP, Wing Commander Saga, and probably Wings of Dawn aren't going to want to either.

The Blue Planet board alone is bigger than Missions and Campaigns or the MediaVPs forum, and about the same size as every single standalone board combined. The pinned library thread (a masterpiece of efficiency!) links 23 separate fiction items, including material that you'll never find by searching HLP (such as 'Morrigan in the Sunglare', Year's Best Military Science Fiction 2014, and 'Morrigan in Shadow', Year's Best Military Science Fiction 2015)! During the voice acting effort, the pinned voice acting thread helped unite people coming in from all across the Internet and keep them up to date on what had been done, what needed to be done, and what still seemed out of reach. During the GRANITE HUNTER alternate reality game, the forum and the IRC channel were flooded with people trying to interact with the game's characters and figure out the mechanics of the game. During release seasons, the forum helped keep threads for individual bugfixings cleanly separated from the campaign discussion. All of these are great reasons to have a specific subforum.

Maybe most importantly, reams and reams of carefully thought out speculation have been written on everything from Ubuntu socioeconomics to the subspace mechanics of post-Zuse rechnender raum to the dialogue between Blue Planet's notions of simulationism and the real challenges of AI development. It would be a ****ing crime to dump all that hard work by users like Phantom Hoover, Luis Dias, Buckshee Rounds, Scotty, Leeko, and more into a homogenous pot.

The same goes for the Wings of Dawn forum and its long-running strategy game. Or the Diaspora forum and its very user-specific support requests.

And the opposite case is what? That by removing a series of clearly marked project boards with cool little blurbs, and replacing this with a single forum of project threads mixed in with general discussion and asset discussion and all the rest, we could improve visibility for new users? As if they'll have an easier time figuring out what to play from a constantly shifting list of threads than plainly separate project forums?

That is, with all due respect, dumb as ****. Nothing has ever suggested, at any point in HLP's history, that users are stuck in mod specific bubbles — with the exception of users very loyal to an IP-based TC. The problem is not helping people choose between FSO content.

The whole ****ing problem, which no amount of forum reorganization will do anything about, is attracting people to FSO, getting it installed and running on their computers, and getting them in-game. The second biggest problem is getting people to register their enjoyment.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 12:44:37 am
Empirical endnote: when we tried to salvage the launch debacle on Steam (big shoutout to everyone who pitched in over there!) we sent nobody to the HLP forums. We sent them to the FSO Installer. Straight to the source. If any of them then registered for HLP, they could check out the mods the installer was already trying to sell them on.

Here's what would work, outside the context of a forum entirely: a clearly organized, graphically simple presentation of mods with a striking screenshot and a couple lines of text each, like Apple's cover flow or Netflix's streaming presentation.

YouTube. Let's Plays. Striking clips and screenshots for Reddit, GAF, SA, whatever. That will get you users. Swirling various levels of forum around ain't ****.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 14, 2017, 01:02:47 am
The Blue Planet board alone is bigger than Missions and Campaigns or the MediaVPs forum, and about the same size as every single standalone board combined. The pinned library thread (a masterpiece of efficiency!) links 23 separate fiction items, including material that you'll never find by searching HLP (such as 'Morrigan in the Sunglare', Year's Best Military Science Fiction 2014, and 'Morrigan in Shadow', Year's Best Military Science Fiction 2015)! During the voice acting effort, the pinned voice acting thread helped unite people coming in from all across the Internet and keep them up to date on what had been done, what needed to be done, and what still seemed out of reach. During the GRANITE HUNTER alternate reality game, the forum and the IRC channel were flooded with people trying to interact with the game's characters and figure out the mechanics of the game.

...

That is, with all due respect, dumb as ****. Nothing has ever suggested, at any point in HLP's history, that users are stuck in mod specific bubbles

uh dude if bubbles weren't a thing maybe all of every non-hosted mission and campaign ever posted about would not be smaller than blue planet??? just a thought~~~
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 14, 2017, 01:04:37 am
uh dude if bubbles weren't a thing maybe all of every non-hosted mission and campaign ever posted about would not be smaller than blue planet??? just a thought~~~
...Okay, I honestly can't tell if this is sarcastic or not. Like, I'm pretty sure it is, but I'm not 100% sure it is.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 14, 2017, 01:06:43 am
unfortunately it was not.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 14, 2017, 01:32:58 am
unfortunately it was not.
you literally released one mission and took over conversation in #bp; how does that suggest people being stuck in a bubble?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 02:31:32 am
unfortunately it was not.

You dumbass (and I mean that in the most loving way cause we're buds), do you understand that people posting in one forum doesn't prevent them from posting in another? :p I guarantee you that nigh on everyone who's ever played Blue Planet has also played other campaigns. They can make thirty posts about Admiral Steele's manscaping tactics and three "loved this campaign, especially XYZ" posts in missions and campaigns and that's still four campaigns played.

This just highlights how incomprehensibly dumb a unified FS forum would be! Who wants to read thirty posts about the importance of crime as an alternative method of legal protection in Reconstruction-era Antares for every one post in your capship mission thread? This is moon logic to me.

It's figuratively literally incomprehensible to me that anyone can see people playing campaigns as zero-sum resources. Everybody who loves BtA or WoD or JaD or BP is going to want more! Good campaigns pull players in and get them involved! I am ****ing thrilled that BtA is amazing because it means people are actually playing the goddamn game instead of World of Tanks.

There is basically only one bubble of exclusive participation on HLP and that's the gendisc crew that doesn't play anything new.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 02:36:29 am
I mean I'd ****ing love to read those thirty posts, but I don't think they'd make me feel that the forum was effectively highlighting my single mission release.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 14, 2017, 03:29:57 am
The whole ****ing problem, which no amount of forum reorganization will do anything about, is attracting people to FSO, getting it installed and running on their computers, and getting them in-game. The second biggest problem is getting people to register their enjoyment.

I tend to agree with this. Our biggest issue at the moment is getting new people to play.

Here's what would work, outside the context of a forum entirely: a clearly organized, graphically simple presentation of mods with a striking screenshot and a couple lines of text each, like Apple's cover flow or Netflix's streaming presentation.

Yep. Strongly agree. This is exactly the sort of thing that should be on the new HLP website.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: tomimaki on February 14, 2017, 03:33:54 am
In my opinion merged hosted projects won't bring activity to less (active?) popular campaigns. More likely it will be grave for them. If new users don't scroll down to check hosted mods, they won't click on 2. page in Missions and Campaigns to check what campaign is there.
For example Frontlines. Right now it's visible on first page forum, after change it could be flooded by posts: I can't install fso, broken joystick etc and be very fast on 2. page.

offtopic
Btw why frontlines release topic is not pinned and why FL team never brought this campaign to the installer?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 14, 2017, 05:01:33 am
I had an idea when it comes to the Aide teams actually. I think it would be a great idea to have one in charge of website design (with cross over the the PR team). Most of the hosted projects look shockingly dated. If we can't do something like the ModDB does and help everyone make their own pages that way, we really should get someone to look at those pages and get them looking a bit more professional.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 14, 2017, 06:16:25 am
Yeah absolutely. When you google 'blue planet freespace' the top result is the old, unloved webpage rather than the actually useful release posts.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Sandwich on February 14, 2017, 07:17:12 am
Sorry I'm late to the thread, but I only just saw it now. I'll be picking some bits to respond to as I encounter them. Sorry it's a bit long; I'll try to keep my replies terse and to the point.

This gets into monetary territory, but would it be worth having regular contests for new comers to win a full copy of FS2? I'd be willing to donate $10 a month for that. It's not an idea that scales up well, but we don't get that many newcomers right now, so it might be easy to pull off in the short term.

That could potentially lead to a rash of new registrations of people that don't contribute. It might work better if it was tied to something like a new (past year or so?) user getting X upvotes on a thread or post—if we had a thread/post upvoting feature. I would like to see that happen TBH—yes, even though I occasionally post those oh-so-controversial threads in GenDisc. :p

My suggestion was(and is) an aggressive push on places like Reddit, Facebook, etc. Images and videos of campaigns and other things FreeSpace related.

This. But it needs to come from the community at large, not just admins or mods or even project heads.

I'd like to figure out some way to make it basically one-click easy to share a thread, post, image on the forums, website page, or whatever on the various social media platforms. I'm thinking of something like you hover over an amazing FS2 image in a thread, and little InstaFaceTwitPin icons appear.

Now don't go barraging me with links on how to do social share buttons; I know all that—I wasn't born yesterday, and I work professionally in the web development field. ;) It's more a matter of getting the chance to do it.

Do you remember the pre millennial layout? With a well organised download section?  I kinda miss that.

I've been wanting to have a downloads section on the website for years. Ideally torrent-based, with an Amazon S3 account acting as the seedbox (it supports torrenting files natively). IIRC, the financial cost of operating an S3 account were the main reason why we never went ahead with it. We can handle a ~$10 monthly S3 cost, maybe $20, but if it ballooned beyond that, we'd have to shut it down. :-/

I refer you to my social media comments regarding fan base attraction and maybe a pic of the day on instagram or twitter?
I'd like to throw Imgur onto that pile. It's certainly not as big as the two you mentioned, but it does have a front page that's seen by the vast majority of users, and it's relatively easy to get on (a well-curated album about an indie video game should have no problem).

Don't forget to include a banana for scale in the Colossus glamor pics. :p

Well you start using hastags that are vague in terms of gaming, space sims, mods and that stuff but also specific ones to your group (#freespace). Tweet your game or videos or whatever at people who do game reviews, lets plays whatever. The more people are talking to each other with and about the game, it increases the people who can see it.

This. #sim #space #spacesim #spacefighter #xwing #fighter, etc. Those are the kinds of generic or semi-generic hashtags that will expand the reach of our posts. Space sim junkies would certainly set up watchlists for at least one of those.

An official trailer which gives viewers an actual idea of what they may typically encounter when playing FSO would be an excellent way to get the game out there. However, trying to create a trailer by committee or group opinion will end up going nowhere because people are going to argue about what should and shouldn't be in it.

I still wanna see a trailer done to Hall of the Mountain King... (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=36921.0) ;)

I want to have a dev blog for my thing, which would be cool considering the sort of hacks I have to do to get these missions working...

Noted. I'd love to see this as well, and I have some premature ideas... :)


Figured this was worth a separate post: whatever we do, we DESPERATELY need a way to consolidate and standardize FSO installation instructions.

This is one of the main things the new website will launch with.


...
Really?  I find it hard to believe that no one has asked about or looked for what I'm looking for, maybe it doesn't exist, but I'm persistent so ...
...

One of the first things I'd like to add to the website after it launches is an official FAQ section, with standing instructions to the community to submit entries there if anyone ever asks a question which is already answered somewhere (i.e. it gets asked more than once, into the FAQ it goes).


How about a preview of new posts scrolling by?  Sort of like we have on the bottom of the main forum site, but scrolling, and floating at the bottom?  (In other words, it stays fixed, scrolling new posts inside itself, while you scroll through the forums, until you pick a sub-forum, at which point it limits itself to new posts from that sub-forum).

Noted.


I may be the only one who thinks this way and that's fine for me, but getting people to sign up on the forums is the last great step for all this. People should be able to come here, find out about the game, where to get it, download mods or whatever and peace out without signing up. That way the people who do sign up are at least partway committed to leaving comments or working on their own projects.

In my opinion the less hoops we make people jump through, the better it is for getting eyes on pages. So as little effort in them getting what they want after they see it ~somewhere~ is best I think.

QFT. This is the overarching goal I have with the website.


I've added General Discussion to the list of boards excluded from Show Unread Posts.  Currently, that is the only public board that is excluded.

Good solution IMO. Time will tell if it's sufficient. BTW, to all y'all complaining about how GenDisc shouldn't be the first thing newcomers see... is nobody old enough to remember when GenDisc was at the top of the forums? We moved it to (nearly) the very bottom years ago, for the very reason that it was indeed off-topic from HLP's purpose de existance (fake French alert).

The thread tagging feature was previously mentioned in the staff discussions.  There is an SMF mod that enables tagging, and that's something I can install even before the move to the new server.  Do we want to go ahead and try that out?

Yes, but is there a way for tags to be community-moderated? We don't need trolls tagging something maliciously and it having the same level of legitimacy as an accurate tag. Community moderation would be good, or perhaps something where any given tag doesn't show on a thread until X number of people have suggested it?

Here's what would work, outside the context of a forum entirely: a clearly organized, graphically simple presentation of mods with a striking screenshot and a couple lines of text each, like Apple's cover flow or Netflix's streaming presentation.

Come up with a mockup of this and I'll see about getting it into the website; while reading this thread I've been wondering how to present the various projects on the website, and this sounds at least as good as anything I came up with. :)

If we can't do something like the ModDB does and help everyone make their own pages that way, we really should get someone to look at those pages and get them looking a bit more professional.

We can, and it's part of what we can call Phase 2 for the website (Phase 1 being the absolute essentials to launch with, which are basically anything related to getting newbies started with playing FS2+).


Finally, I'd strongly advise against merging public project boards. As things stand now, each project is fairly treated and has effectively equal exposure on the forums (disregarding the sorting order of the projects). Merge them all together and you're left with a forum that will have 99% of the first page be BP posts (or whatever's the most popular—I'm woefully out of date!), effectively giving all the smaller projects the shaft, exposure-wise.

Keep things separated, and figure out ways to improve exposure of smaller projects. Personally I feel the website, post Phase 2, will go a long way to achieving this goal.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 14, 2017, 09:31:08 am
[Long Battuta post]
I agree.

There is basically only one bubble of exclusive participation on HLP and that's the gendisc crew that doesn't play anything new.
Delete gendisc, nothing of value will be lost.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 14, 2017, 09:44:53 am
Don't delete it. Even if for no other reason than to be able to show those who question that decision why. But it's not all bad anyway. The reading material threads for instance.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 14, 2017, 09:58:07 am
That's true actually, there's nothing particularly wrong with GamDisc and it'd be a bit drastic to nuke the analogous film/TV/book threads.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 14, 2017, 10:03:38 am
Do we have anyone with webdev experience who would be happy to volunteer their time to make a glossed-up brochure for FSO mods as a whole, anyway?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 14, 2017, 10:03:57 am
Gamdisc had some of the best threads of the past couple years, I'd be very much against losing it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 14, 2017, 10:08:51 am
Do we have anyone with webdev experience who would be happy to volunteer their time to make a glossed-up brochure for FSO mods as a whole, anyway?

I currently have a job making webapps/websites for SSA but I'm still new and would like to see what's being used here as a base. I would not mind helping to build some functionality or design to a site.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 14, 2017, 10:15:29 am
Gamdisc had some of the best threads of the past couple years, I'd be very much against losing it.

Nobody's proposing that we delete GamDisc, to be clear, what I'm saying is that there are similar good threads about media in GenDisc which are getting caught up in a quarantine for political ****posts.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 14, 2017, 10:19:36 am
Do we have anyone with webdev experience who would be happy to volunteer their time to make a glossed-up brochure for FSO mods as a whole, anyway?

I currently have a job making webapps/websites for SSA but I'm still new and would like to see what's being used here as a base. I would not mind helping to build some functionality or design to a site.

I'm a terribly non-visual person, but if there's anything I can do on the technical side, I'd be glad to.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 14, 2017, 10:29:49 am
uh dude if bubbles weren't a thing maybe all of every non-hosted mission and campaign ever posted about would not be smaller than blue planet??? just a thought~~~
Here's a thought~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
BP is the most popular and inspires the most discussion because of its own merits. It takes the Freespace universe that people are heavily invested in, and adds a complex, compelling, well written story with multiple layers, that gives as much answers as it raises questions. This sparks discussion and speculation amongst the players, which creates forum activity.
In addition to the story, it also takes the freespace gameplay and makes it make sense in a consistent inuniverse way, and expands a lot of the military feeling in a natural and logical way.
It's ****ing catnip for Freespace players.

The simple truth is that no other project has accomplished the same things BP has in this regard.
Diaspora: Captures the BSG feel perfectly, but the campaign is a self-contained short story that doesn't inspire any debate. It is exactly what it is, what is there to talk about outside of telling the devs how neat the models, music and BSG atmosphere is?

JAD: Funny, witty, incredible polished and technically accomplished. Comedy and lightheartedness makes people laugh and smile, but it often doesn't invoke questions and serious forum discussions. And there are probably also a lot of player that will scoff at the notion of playing a campaign that isn't full of grim and dark and deep war despair. Gotta have big blocky grey capitalships in a post-capella setting or no go.

OldWoD: Another case of a self-contained story with few open ends to talk about. Aliens show up, you kill the flagship and win the war against aliens. Hurrah.
NuWoD: With the first episode release, the story hasn't really taken off yet, Dawn hangs around with Justice and Tempest and does mercenary things. There isn't too much to talk about here yet. I'm not that suprised there aren't 50 pages of discussion there. Of course it also has that 'oh so very icky anime influence' that seems to disgust the grimdark crowd so much. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ 

What you preceive as a 'bubble' is really just that easily explained. Posting in one forum doesn't prevent you from posting in another. There is not some kind of tribal war going on where you pick a side and then only ever be involved with that. Some campaigns and stories just invite more activity than others.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: 666maslo666 on February 14, 2017, 10:41:35 am
HLP needs an unified installer+updater+launcher, simple to use, kept up-to-date and with built-in advertising for mods. Think Steam, but for HLP content. It should handle both mods based on FS and standalone mods. This is the standard in this day and age, anything less means potential players will be scared off. Nobody but a small fraction of hardcore users is going to browse forums to find content to play. So it does not really matter how forum topics are organized.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 10:51:05 am
That's basically the FSO installer, which is pretty good. Its biggest issue is that people don't understand how to launch it and have to be told to execute it as a Java thing.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 14, 2017, 10:57:44 am
That's pretty silly, surely it can be bundled into a Windows binary?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Nyctaeus on February 14, 2017, 11:04:43 am
HLP needs an unified installer+updater+launcher, simple to use, kept up-to-date and with built-in advertising for mods. Think Steam, but for HLP content. It should handle both mods based on FS and standalone mods. This is the standard in this day and age, anything less means potential players will be scared off. Nobody but a small fraction of hardcore users is going to browse forums to find content to play. So it does not really matter how forum topics are organized.
Think BattleNET!

Maybe attach it to some special SVN with access for only project heads and only to their folders? No more redownloading gigs of files just to have new, patched version? I used to release pathes to SG as separate modfolders, but this sucked. Anyway probably less, than rereleases of whole mods like BP used to do.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 14, 2017, 12:13:11 pm
That's basically the FSO installer, which is pretty good. Its biggest issue is that people don't understand how to launch it and have to be told to execute it as a Java thing.

Ugh.. I have always hated that the installer was a Java thing. From the get-go, it's already not an easy-to-run program like any other installer I download off the internet. And it has that tainted Java name to it, accurate or not. I know there's a difference between the various kinds and uses of Java.. but I'm a tech nerd. Not everyone knows it... Java, you say? Isn't that not safe?

*google's "Is Java Safe"*

First result: Using Java is an unnecessary security risk.... blahblah the rest of the paragraph doesn't matter, the damage is done.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 14, 2017, 12:22:47 pm
Quote from: Spoon
[BP is awesome and mystical and people like to talk about it]

I wonder if there's a marketing opportunity here. BP would make an excellent ARG, and those have been shown effective at generating public interest. Think GRANITE HUNTER, but public and designed to not require FS-specific knowledge.

Frankly, this is where I thought you were going to go with that post, Spoon.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 14, 2017, 12:43:12 pm
Except for the fact that BP requires a lot of Freespace knowledge.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 01:07:23 pm
Yeah, BP is pretty heavily invested in the canon. Although the Morrigan stories show it can be made, uh, narratively standalone: even so I don't think a deep fictional dive is necessarily gonna attract anyone.

Unless it's as awesome as motherhorseeyes!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 14, 2017, 01:19:16 pm
Except for the fact that BP requires a lot of Freespace knowledge.

Does it, though? Certainly there are a lot of FS terms that are assumed knowledge (Shivans, ETAK, GTVA, ship classes...), but ARGs tend to throw around clearly-significant-but-undefined terms for people to figure out. A BP ARG could therefore operate as an introduction to FS in general.

I also once used BP-with-the-serial-numbers-filed-off as a setting for a Mafia game, and even in that context people did a pretty good job of figuring out what was going on.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 14, 2017, 01:58:54 pm
I'm (completely impartially) against gendisc being removed,  but I would endorse a clean slate policy aside from a few key long running posts.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 14, 2017, 02:47:09 pm
No, just deleting or locking all the current threads and starting anew will not help, because it's not the individual threads that are the problem, but the people in them (and I will include myself in there).

Off the top of my head, GD has exactly three good threads: WHIYL, Book Club and Music. That's it. Everything else, all the political bull****, should go.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 14, 2017, 03:45:00 pm
Well if it's the people therein, how do we prevent simular "outbreaks once there's not a place to vent?

Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 04:02:34 pm
Presumably the same way we prevent extensive arguments about Magic the Gathering card prices. This just won't be a place for those discussions.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 14, 2017, 04:03:36 pm
Well if it's the people therein, how do we prevent simular "outbreaks once there's not a place to vent?
with the report button, obviously

historically, people getting Political Prisoner'd has not usually resulted in them ****posting all over the rest of the forums
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 14, 2017, 06:06:33 pm
Is Scotty not a moderator anymore? His name is not blue and his badge is gone.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 14, 2017, 07:44:04 pm
BTW, to all y'all complaining about how GenDisc shouldn't be the first thing newcomers see... is nobody old enough to remember when GenDisc was at the top of the forums? We moved it to (nearly) the very bottom years ago, for the very reason that it was indeed off-topic from HLP's purpose de existance (fake French alert).

Yeah, the memory of this had me chuckling at those posts too.  Hell, one or two prominent individuals were angered enough by that change to flat-out quit visiting the site.

Quote
Yes, but is there a way for tags to be community-moderated? We don't need trolls tagging something maliciously and it having the same level of legitimacy as an accurate tag. Community moderation would be good, or perhaps something where any given tag doesn't show on a thread until X number of people have suggested it?

I'm fairly sure (though not 100% certain) that the tagging mod involves choosing from a list of pre-defined tags to label a thread.  So we'd have built-in tags like "Campaign" or "Model" or "MIssion," as well as for FSO versions like "3.7.4" to filter things.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 14, 2017, 08:04:33 pm
Hell, one or two prominent individuals were angered enough by that change to flat-out quit visiting the site.

bomber harris do it again
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Sandwich on February 14, 2017, 08:45:53 pm
HLP's purpose is to "bring modders together". So once we're together and we form friendships and relationships, are we forbidden from discussing things of importance to us as people, which may not have any relevance to the original reason we formed a bond (FS2)? I'm fine with excluding GenDisc from being counted in the recent replies list, and posts therein haven't counted for a forumite's postcount for years, but I don't think shutting it down entirely is the right step.

For one, if you don't like it, nobody's holding a gun to your head and forcing you to go there.

Secondly, if you're worried about newcomers being turned off by passionate discussion, please go turn off the internet and read a book under a tree or something equally pastoral. HLP is not liberal American college campus 101, and we don't need to create "safe spaces" for people who get offended by every little thing... besides, I think it's actually heartwarming how we can debate and bicker in one thread, and then trade modding tips or whatever in the next.

Finally, I'll be the first to admit that I've actually had a change of mind, fairly recently too, as a result of a GenDisc thread—the gay parents thread. I hadn't considered that the parents in question were—regardless of whatever else they were—simply bad parents. Someone posted that possibility, and it seems to be quite the reasonable explanation for the horrible experiences I posted about.

Anyway, all that to say that GenDisc isn't bad at all. It's passionate, raw, and real. I vote it stays—de-emphasized in whatever means we see fit, but I believe it should remain open for discussion for the more daring among us. ;)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 14, 2017, 08:56:35 pm
HLP's purpose is to "bring modders together".
[...]
we don't need to create "safe spaces"
Pick one.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 14, 2017, 09:08:32 pm
HLP's purpose is to "bring modders together".
[...]
we don't need to create "safe spaces"
Pick one.

I don't get it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 14, 2017, 09:23:37 pm
Re: GenDisc specifically, some time ago a suggestion was proposed (and eventually shot down) to separate out political/religious/whatever discussions into their own folder.  What about actually doing that this time, but taking things a step further: make that folder only visible to an opt-in usergroup.  That way those people who enjoy that sort of discussion, or at least who get some lulz from reading it, are free to partake as they please, and all newbies have to see is the fun mundane stuff like WHIYL.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 14, 2017, 09:24:42 pm
I'd be on board with that.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 14, 2017, 09:44:27 pm
I could live with that. As long as making it opt in didn't result in it becoming worse. i.e it would become opt-in but the level of moderation wouldn't be reduced (in fact I'd suggest bringing back the old zero tolerance on flaming rules). Basically the political discussions sub-forum would become a place where if you asked to be in it, you're expected to show a higher level of maturity that we've had on GD, not a lower one. No soapboxing, belittling other users, etc.

People who can't show that level of maturity, would swiftly be kicked out of the forum.

The main reason we haven't in fact split off political discussions is because there was a good likelihood of it turning into a flame pit that would drag the rest of the board down with it. If people are happy with accepting that they will have to be on their best behaviour in the political forum and that things that would be tolerated in the other forums won't be on that board, I'd be happy with splitting it off right now. Then we can leave Gen Disc as the place to talk about funny stories you saw on the news, what books / films you like, etc.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 14, 2017, 09:49:39 pm
HLP's purpose is to "bring modders together".
[...]
we don't need to create "safe spaces"
Pick one.

I don't get it.
Either your goal is to be a haven for modders (in which case things unwelcoming to modders need to be minimized), or your goal is to be an unregulated free speech zone (in which case you just have to accept that some conversations being allowed is going to drive potential modders away). Trying to be all things to everyone is physically impossible.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 14, 2017, 10:24:14 pm
I believe it should remain open for discussion for the more daring among us. ;)

Maybe you should dare to play some FreeSpace
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 14, 2017, 11:27:18 pm
I believe it should remain open for discussion for the more daring among us. ;)

Maybe you should dare to play some FreeSpace
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 15, 2017, 12:22:37 am
Let's keep this thread free from the usual petty sniping, shall we?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 15, 2017, 01:06:04 am
How many people (not big players) use GD over a dedicated chat forum because they LIKE hard light?
I do and have since 90-whenever it opened.  I chose it over VBB as it was MORE sensible. I may not post as much but it still is a good read.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 15, 2017, 04:17:28 am
HLP is not liberal American college campus 101, and we don't need to create "safe spaces" for people who get offended by every little thing...

Safe spaces were brought to life in a country were bigoted views on people with non-default sexualities are common, and where those bigoted views are often expressed trough harassment and bullying and other ways that only shut people up. They aren't for people who get offended by every little thing, they are against them.

I'd argue that that is a point you're missing here: By having guidelines for forum conduct, one that specifically mentions that "racism, homophobic language, sexism, personal attacks, and harassment" are not permitted, HLP already is a safe space. By arguing against safe spaces you're also arguing against the forum policies that you've been enacting and the forum policies that created the enviroment that you just praised. The point that a lot of people are making in this thread, even if they don't agree to a solution, has been that they don't feel that this policy has been enforced consistently.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 15, 2017, 04:41:45 am
+1 for gen disc split, I've advocated for it before. I didn't mention it here before because I thought it was very much off the table.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Sandwich on February 15, 2017, 05:27:25 am
Either your goal is to be a haven for modders (in which case things unwelcoming to modders need to be minimized), or your goal is to be an unregulated free speech zone (in which case you just have to accept that some conversations being allowed is going to drive potential modders away). Trying to be all things to everyone is physically impossible.

Evidently I should have been more specific, or perhaps I mislabeled the term—apologies all around if so. I was intending to refer to those instances where students were so bothered by the result of the election that "safe spaces"—or whatever the proper term—were created for students who couldn't handle their normal routine immediately thereafter (eg. http://college.usatoday.com/2016/11/15/heres-how-universities-are-offering-support-to-students-after-trumps-election/).

I'm not referring to safe spaces created for other reasons, (primarily) prior to the election results. The difference being that a safe space against an actual threat of violence or in-your-face expressions of hatred is eminently reasonable, while a safe space against an outcome you don't like of a democratic election is a bit ridiculous. Basically... protect, don't pamper.

Anyway, I'm not getting into any further political discussion in this thread, of all places. My point is that yes, HLP should be a protected place for modders to do their thing, but since we have a dedicated forum for non-modding-related discussion—GenDisc—I  don't believe there's any need for actual pampering. Completely removing the off-topic discussions from the public eye to prevent exposure to passionate discussion and occasional vitriol seems to me to fit firmly in the "pampering" category.

I believe it should remain open for discussion for the more daring among us. ;)

Maybe you should dare to play some FreeSpace


Hush, you. I told you not to bring that up. :p

Re: GenDisc specifically, some time ago a suggestion was proposed (and eventually shot down) to separate out political/religious/whatever discussions into their own folder.  What about actually doing that this time, but taking things a step further: make that folder only visible to an opt-in usergroup.  That way those people who enjoy that sort of discussion, or at least who get some lulz from reading it, are free to partake as they please, and all newbies have to see is the fun mundane stuff like WHIYL.

I'd be okay with a split into a subforum, but why hide it? Label it appropriately, perhaps "Controversial Topics", and explain in the description that this is an area for often-heated debates about the more divisive topics of life, politics, religion, morality, etc, and that people who are bothered by such topics need not partake. Nothing more than that needs to be done (IMO).

<3 y'all!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 15, 2017, 05:33:21 am
Actually I quite like the idea of making it opt-in. Anyone who doesn't like it can opt back out again. But I'd suggest making it visible at first but with the kind of heavier moderation I mentioned before, if that can stop it being such a problem on its own, there wouldn't be any need to make it opt-in. If after say 3-4 months we've not had any major issues cause of it we leave it as is. If it's caused problems at the same level as the current gen disc we make it opt-in. If it has caused more problems, we burn it to the ground and then salt the ashes with plutonium so nothing can ever grow there again. :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Sandwich on February 15, 2017, 05:50:25 am
Actually I quite like the idea of making it opt-in. Anyone who doesn't like it can opt back out again. But I'd suggest making it visible at first but with the kind of heavier moderation I mentioned before, if that can stop it being such a problem on its own, there wouldn't be any need to make it opt-in. If after say 3-4 months we've not had any major issues cause of it we leave it as is. If it's caused problems at the same level as the current gen disc we make it opt-in. If it has caused more problems, we burn it to the ground and then salt the ashes with plutonium so nothing can ever grow there again. :p

Two questions arise:

First, labelling it "Controversial Topics" and giving it a proper scary description is sufficient warning. Having it be a subforum that people have to click thru in order to view is the best kind of opt-in—the kind that doesn't increase the workload on moderators. We already have the ability to ban problematic users from participation in specific forums. Why is there a need/desire for participation therein—or even the ability to view the forum—to have to be manually approved? I don't get that part.

Second, how do you define the "problems" you mentioned? I'm guessing you're referring to those situations where a disagreement devolves into a flame war, or into responses that are sufficiently harshly-worded that the recipient or others file a complaint?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 15, 2017, 06:45:37 am
I'll just say that the idea of hiding gen disc from the view of members is a bad idea. Putting it behind a wall requiring membership to climb is one thing, but if there's a hidden forum that people can opt into, everyone will want to opt into it just in order to see what they're missing.

I think it's better to take away all that kind of "mystique" if you like of hiding it or requiring an opt in, and just let opting in require entering the forum and posting.

Oh and a little something for you Sandwich, talking about bravery, you're protected because you're an admin (although Phantom Hoover still comes after you despite that, I know.) Things would be very different for you if you weren't an admin, you'd feel the full weight of the persecution that comes with holding opinions that run contrary to the favored group. So a piece of advice when analysing the gen disc situation, your own personal experiences within that forum should not be used as a guide in that analysis.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Black Wolf on February 15, 2017, 07:20:23 am
I am sure Gendisc attracts a lot of users for its many fruitful and fascinating discussions of non-FreeSpace related topics. Wait hang on

Project forums go over my dead rancid pale wormlike body.

Thank you for this useful and constructive post. :rolleyes:

I presume you actually read the thread and considered the arguments already presented before posting. Right? You were taking care to be useful and constructive?

I would have liked to extend the same presumption to you, but as the rest of your post makes clear, you obviously didn't bother to read the thread, or the original post I made, or you would have seen this part:

Quote
There’s an argument to be made for keeping things like Diaspora and FotG separate, but at least all the ones for projects that take place in the FS universe can probably exist together.

Which directly addresses one of your major points:


Yeah, but we can't force people to integrate their boards who don't want to, can we? That's why I'm asking the project heads. Is Blue Planet the only mod that isn't willing to try this out?

I mean, I assume Diaspora, TBP, Wing Commander Saga, and probably Wings of Dawn aren't going to want to either.

Since you're clearly not reading my posts, I wont bother going point by point on yours. However, I do agree with this part of what you said:

The whole ****ing problem, which no amount of forum reorganization will do anything about, is attracting people to FSO, getting it installed and running on their computers, and getting them in-game. The second biggest problem is getting people to register their enjoyment.

The vast bulk of the issues HLP faces come down to a shrinking player pool. My position remains that concentrating that player pool is a positive thing, and I've read no good arguments against that. But, as Kara says, forcing people to merge who don't want to is definitely not the right course of action. I really don't like the optics of having some FS campaigns out of the larger campaign grouping, but I think the advantages of having such a groupingoutweigh the negatives. Once we get a tagging system in place, I'm happy to volunteer Frontlines as a project willing to start the bigger forum.

On that note:




Now, all that aside, on the original point, growing the player/modder pool is the only long term solution. I think we do that in a couple of ways.

Sodial media has been mentioned plenty of times, and it's a good call. I'm not the most active social media user, but I have a pretty good handle on at least the basic techniques for making stuff more visible - appropriate use of hashtags, following and interacting with the right accounts, quality over quantity content etc. Instagram seems like a system tailor made for what we produce, with the monthly screenshot competitions and such, but it's giving me errors trying to sign up. I'll try again soon. If anyone already actively uses instagram, and can suggest some particularly good hashtags

Second, as described in a previous post, we content creators have to be better at cross posting release threads to other space sim communities. Places like Reddit seem like a good place to start, but that is on the individual content creators far more than on the site as a whole. What we can do though is maintain a list of sites content creators can consider posting their new campaigns and other material to.

Beyond that, I'm not sure what else we can do. I do think that the next major release for a TC or something with an existing IP (I'm mainly thinking Diaspora or FOTG) will be something we can make massive use of - the opportunity to draw in fans of another property is a rare one, and we should definitely make use of that when it comes.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 15, 2017, 07:21:17 am
I wouldn't worry about any preferential treatment for mods and admits.   I'm pretty sure that I get treated as fair as anyone else.  It's not prejudice, it's just not preferential.  As it should be.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 15, 2017, 09:30:27 am
I wouldn't worry about any preferential treatment for mods and admits.   I'm pretty sure that I get treated as fair as anyone else.  It's not prejudice, it's just not preferential.  As it should be.
You don't count Dekker. At least, I don't think you do. I've never seen you do any moderating. Do you? Are you ever part of the discussion when it comes to the moderating of this place? When opinions are to be taken on how to deal with someone?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Black Wolf on February 15, 2017, 10:27:29 am
This really isn't what this thread is for, Lorric. I don't want to have to split it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 15, 2017, 10:29:55 am
If y'all want to fix up the impression you give to new members you can start by laying off the needless sarcasm and personal attacks. As Arris Gavel once put it, "seriously".
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 15, 2017, 10:47:04 am
Who's being needlessly personal?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 15, 2017, 10:49:33 am
The vast bulk of the issues HLP faces come down to a shrinking player pool. My position remains that concentrating that player pool is a positive thing, and I've read no good arguments against that.

You have, you just don't agree with them.

A forum just for release threads is one thing. I think that something like that would actually be a good idea. But consolidating all discussions, no matter which mod they belong to, is stupid, especially when HLP's largest success stories have all been mods that tell stories conducive to lots of discussions that shouldn't have to happen in a single thread.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 15, 2017, 11:00:53 am
We got a report about a post in this thread.

Guys you know this game is 20 years old and we're all talking through computer screens from god knows where, right? It's not that big of a deal, tone it down. This is supposed to be fun, not a crusade.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 15, 2017, 11:05:03 am
Who's being needlessly personal?

I frankly feel odd naming names for fear of causing further drama - maybe that makes me hopelessly naive, I dunno. I'm also something of an outsider and am aware that that skews my perspective.

However, outsiders are exactly the sort of person you're interested in attracting, no? After all, people already part of your community can hardly join it. And, when I - as an outsider - see people associated with big-name projects with a gazillion badges under their names getting into spats about who may or may not have skipped over some forum post or other, or moderators belittling each other's moderation abilities, it makes me quite profoundly worried about my decision to register here, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

But I don't want to cause a fuss, and I've said what I wanted to say.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 11:40:07 am
We got a report about a post in this thread.

Guys you know this game is 20 years old and we're all talking through computer screens from god knows where, right? It's not that big of a deal, tone it down. This is supposed to be fun, not a crusade.

Consider crusading for fun by playing the game for once

Who's being needlessly personal?

I frankly feel odd naming names for fear of causing further drama - maybe that makes me hopelessly naive, I dunno. I'm also something of an outsider and am aware that that skews my perspective.

However, outsiders are exactly the sort of person you're interested in attracting, no? After all, people already part of your community can hardly join it. And, when I - as an outsider - see people associated with big-name projects with a gazillion badges under their names getting into spats about who may or may not have skipped over some forum post or other, or moderators belittling each other's moderation abilities, it makes me quite profoundly worried about my decision to register here, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

But I don't want to cause a fuss, and I've said what I wanted to say.

You have correctly diagnosed the problem that this forum has been toxic and the moderation somewhat nebbish for years. A while ago a bunch of us tried to explain that hands-off and cautious moderation leaves project members dependent on their own snark to fend off persistent trolls (sup DarthWang) and promotes bickering and personal attacks. Similarly, low-standards everything-goes discussion in which an uninformed opinion stands on the same ground as an expert means that experts have to spend most of their time trying to get idiots to shut up. Forums with reasonable, proactive moderation had good posting! The others...well, it was open season.

I've been reading a great book which basically describes grudging and interpersonal dominance as rational responses to a system without a Leviathan; if there's no trustably impartial enforcer, everyone has to watch out for themselves.

The BP board has been very lucky to exist under Darius who's an incredibly decent and decisive guy, so it's been easy to focus on what's good. But you get something like TBP with IPAndrews popping up, or Diaspora before Möbius and Ironforge got banned, or WoD before DarthWang got outed, and the only thing to do is talk them out before they drag more people into it.

Good moderation focuses the forum on producing and enabling content. To the extent that GD has content it's smart people saying things about their expertise. People get very upset when confronted with the fact that their opinions are wrong, and that upset becomes the focus of discussion.

Modding is good. The modding community is friendly and helpful. Axem owns and works hard for the site.

The site's biggest challenge (as opposed to FSO's biggest challenge) is that it seems to get the most activity for:

1. A small group of people having discussions they could have anywhere

2. People complaining about the site and how it treated them

And not 3: FreeSpace mods.

Last night I prototyped an entire working 'mechlab' for FreeSpace warships! You could design and outfit your own capship. Unfortunately it sucked and wasn't fun, but I'll probably start a thread about the next take. I fully expect the next split derail about someone's grudge against someone else to get more replies.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 11:42:51 am
Tl;dr this is a small social circle and small groups of people inevitably develop grudges and hierarchies.

I can go elsewhere on the internet to have smart discussions with well-informed people; HLP is mediocre at that because I have to waste time addressing bad faith or bad info posters. HLP is the only place I can go for my love of cool FS mods and it should focus on that competence: bringing modders together, not providing a sewing circle for repeating the same fixed opinions and having the same arguments over and over.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 11:56:13 am
Also as a point of interest actual dev studios work the same way! Petty grudges and power plays dominate the conversation, and the actual work is often sacrificed in the name of ****ing one's rival. PolItical and moral disagreements drive people out of totally apolitical projects.

The nice thing about HLP is that there's no real money at stake and the community's a lot better at pooling knowledge and assets. Also it's a less toxic environment than an actual studio.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 15, 2017, 12:05:23 pm
Tl;dr this is a small social circle and small groups of people inevitably develop grudges and hierarchies.

I can go elsewhere on the internet to have smart discussions with well-informed people; HLP is mediocre at that because I have to waste time addressing bad faith or bad info posters. HLP is the only place I can go for my love of cool FS mods and it should focus on that competence: bringing modders together, not providing a sewing circle for repeating the same fixed opinions and having the same arguments over and over.

+1
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 15, 2017, 12:14:44 pm
We got a report about a post in this thread.

Guys you know this game is 20 years old and we're all talking through computer screens from god knows where, right? It's not that big of a deal, tone it down. This is supposed to be fun, not a crusade.

Consider crusading for fun by playing the game for once

Who's being needlessly personal?

I frankly feel odd naming names for fear of causing further drama - maybe that makes me hopelessly naive, I dunno. I'm also something of an outsider and am aware that that skews my perspective.

However, outsiders are exactly the sort of person you're interested in attracting, no? After all, people already part of your community can hardly join it. And, when I - as an outsider - see people associated with big-name projects with a gazillion badges under their names getting into spats about who may or may not have skipped over some forum post or other, or moderators belittling each other's moderation abilities, it makes me quite profoundly worried about my decision to register here, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

But I don't want to cause a fuss, and I've said what I wanted to say.

You have correctly diagnosed the problem that this forum has been toxic and the moderation somewhat nebbish for years. A while ago a bunch of us tried to explain that hands-off and cautious moderation leaves project members dependent on their own snark to fend off persistent trolls (sup DarthWang) and promotes bickering and personal attacks. Similarly, low-standards everything-goes discussion in which an uninformed opinion stands on the same ground as an expert means that experts have to spend most of their time trying to get idiots to shut up. Forums with reasonable, proactive moderation had good posting! The others...well, it was open season.

I've been reading a great book which basically describes grudging and interpersonal dominance as rational responses to a system without a Leviathan; if there's no trustably impartial enforcer, everyone has to watch out for themselves.

The BP board has been very lucky to exist under Darius who's an incredibly decent and decisive guy, so it's been easy to focus on what's good. But you get something like TBP with IPAndrews popping up, or Diaspora before Möbius and Ironforge got banned, or WoD before DarthWang got outed, and the only thing to do is talk them out before they drag more people into it.

Good moderation focuses the forum on producing and enabling content. To the extent that GD has content it's smart people saying things about their expertise. People get very upset when confronted with the fact that their opinions are wrong, and that upset becomes the focus of discussion.

Modding is good. The modding community is friendly and helpful. Axem owns and works hard for the site.

The site's biggest challenge (as opposed to FSO's biggest challenge) is that it seems to get the most activity for:

1. A small group of people having discussions they could have anywhere

2. People complaining about the site and how it treated them

And not 3: FreeSpace mods.

Last night I prototyped an entire working 'mechlab' for FreeSpace warships! You could design and outfit your own capship. Unfortunately it sucked and wasn't fun, but I'll probably start a thread about the next take. I fully expect the next split derail about someone's grudge against someone else to get more replies.
You see this is where you and the people that think as you do go profoundly wrong.

You feel that people need to be silenced. No, the way to deal with people you don't want to interact with is not to interact with them. You ignore their posts and continue the conversation without them. Let it happen organically, not be enforced and determined by moderators. Ignore what threads they make that are of no interest or distatseful to you and just post around them if they appear in threads that do interest you.

So you take matters into your own hands and go on your crusades to beat down on people you don't want here until they despise you and this place, backed up implicitly and sometimes explicitly by the staff here. And so some leave and some resist you. And then, you act all concerned about people not coming here or leaving when you are the biggest creators of people leaving and not coming. People can see that you're actively driving people out and what a hostile place this is. This behaviour is the biggest problem as it tells large swathes of people they're not welcome here.

You've been doing it for years and years. At what point do you decide this isn't working? That this course is the wrong one?

I take it you mean Axem owns as in Axem is cool, not he owns HLP itself.

You are correct about modding being good.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 12:24:00 pm
No, lol. You've been treated fairly - extra generously in fact - by the standards of conduct and by discussion.

When you enter a discussion, you invite response. If you're driven away by the crushing correction of your ignorance, that's on you. Discussion is about engaging with others. You can't beg to be left alone while also engaging in discussion.

Your bans and exclusions are due to your behavior; not your opinions. You can see the same for anon, a super liberal dude who's not exactly welcome here!

You have a silly idea that people are driven away from this forum by the same things that have happened to you. Buddy, you're a special case.

This forum's declining population has little to do with politics and everything to do with people not playing the game. Killing Gendisc will be a good step because it removes a source of drama and focuses the site.

Let me say it again plainly: you want this to be about you. You want your experience to be the biggest problem on HLP. You are our own problem. But you've been doing a lot better. Keep it up!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 12:29:46 pm
Here, I thought of a golden rule for you, it's foolproof:

Just talk about topics. Never discuss people. Never give in the urge to talk about a specific moderator or poster or whoever's keeping you down. Stick 100% to the substance and you will be fine. You'll get brutally owned but it'll be on grounds of substance, that's fine.

Magic! No more derails. No more grudges. Contentment from content!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 15, 2017, 12:30:59 pm
Who's being needlessly personal?

I frankly feel odd naming names for fear of causing further drama - maybe that makes me hopelessly naive, I dunno. I'm also something of an outsider and am aware that that skews my perspective.

However, outsiders are exactly the sort of person you're interested in attracting, no? After all, people already part of your community can hardly join it. And, when I - as an outsider - see people associated with big-name projects with a gazillion badges under their names getting into spats about who may or may not have skipped over some forum post or other, or moderators belittling each other's moderation abilities, it makes me quite profoundly worried about my decision to register here, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

But I don't want to cause a fuss, and I've said what I wanted to say.


You see this is where you and the people that think as you do go profoundly wrong.

You feel that people need to be silenced. No, the way to deal with people you don't want to interact with is not to interact with them. You ignore their posts and continue the conversation without them. Let it happen organically, not be enforced and determined by moderators. Ignore what threads they make that are of no interest or distatseful to you and just post around them if they appear in threads that do interest you.

So you take matters into your own hands and go on your crusades to beat down on people you don't want here until they despise you and this place, backed up implicitly and sometimes explicitly by the staff here. And so some leave and some resist you. And then, you act all concerned about people not coming here or leaving when you are the biggest creators of people leaving and not coming. People can see that you're actively driving people out and what a hostile place this is. This behaviour is the biggest problem as it tells large swathes of people they're not welcome here.

You've been doing it for years and years. At what point do you decide this isn't working? That this course is the wrong one?

I take it you mean Axem owns as in Axem is cool, not he owns HLP itself.

You are correct about modding being good.

xenocartographer is right, a lot of posts have just shown us moderators and admin staff fighting with each other, and it looks very bad. I don't want to continue this trend. I think that both of you have valid points, and I hope you keep it up.

There's two choices available to HLP:

1) Open up, try some new things, maybe add some new moderators, shift the focus to a more general modding platform (take a look at our brother site, moddb.com, as an example of what we could become, albeit with a more narrow focus on supporting the Freespace engine and scifi-related games).

2) Cut out everything except modding Freespace Open. Close off anything that's not directly related to playing and modding Freespace 2.

That's the dialogue I'm seeing here.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 12:36:52 pm
This site already hosts mods for Homeworld, MechCommander 2 and Sins of a Solar Empire. Which you'd know if you ever participated!

You take it personally when you're called out on not understanding the work being done — but you have no idea how frustrating it is for people actually making mods to deal with the opinions of those who have no stake in the process. It's cool if you don't have time or attention or whatever. Just leave it to those who do.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 12:38:56 pm
Here's a great example: "Oh, moderators shouldn't fight, it looks bad! Stop telling me to get involved, that's fighting, it's bad." That's pretty frustrating.

Here is something you could do that would be a big help, a huge help to this community:

Play a mod. Go play BtA. Post your thoughts.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 15, 2017, 12:42:21 pm
HLP should be a FreeSpace focussed, but by no means a FreeSpace exclusive site.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 15, 2017, 12:46:00 pm
So we've talked to death about GD and the *ahem* things that happen there. Ok, cool. Opinions made known.

Who's up for some Social Media discussion again? Anyone chomping at the bit to basically make their role here about playing mods, taking screenshots, and posting them on an HLP Instagram?

I run the HLP Twitter account (which mostly means that I let IFTTT and RSS post to it when there's Announcements or Highlights). But I'm going to try and post more often and also want to get a few others the ability to post to it.

How about Facebook? I don't use Facebook. What do people post there these days? Anyone up for posting fake news articles that only reinforce their opinion on HLP's status interesting tidbits about FSO, it's upgrades, and campaigns?

/obviousattemptatrefocusingthethread
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 15, 2017, 01:04:50 pm
I've said I'm willing to help with Facebook and Youtube/Twitch stuff but it's not my call
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 01:08:04 pm
I've said I'm willing to help with Facebook and Youtube/Twitch stuff but it's not my call

Sure it is! Take it away.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on February 15, 2017, 01:10:23 pm
There are years of great screenies from the monthly screenshot competitions. Add some tags and context and you can use those for quite a while before you need new material.

As for Let's Plays there are some good ones for most popular big campaigns like BP, Diaspora, nuWoD, oldJAD, Retail with MediaVPs. Contact whoever made them and ask if it's alright to post them on your social media. No need to reupload anything, just link to them. I doubt anyone would refuse free promotion so it should work.

AFAIK there's no LP for BtA or JAD 2.21 which is a bit of a shame but you can always ask one of your testers to make one or something.

Twitch would require much more regular investment and is imo not really worth doing. Unless you can provide new interesting content on a good schedule it's better to just upload anything you've got on youtube. You can have promo streams or podcasts(if you can get some people to agree to do it) but otherwise I think gameplay should be VOD focused rather than live.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 01:13:44 pm
If we got someone really hot to stream it'd be great.

I volunteer Darius
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 15, 2017, 01:15:37 pm
Alright mjn, then I'll just keep this very short. No Battuta. It's not just about me. And you know this too. I'm far from the only one talking here, and I could reel off a list of names of targetted people, and I'm sure others could too.

On social media pushing of Freespace, what I think is really important is to go into it with a mindset of doing it for others, not for us. Not forcing it, not trying to get people in, trying to help people find something they are unaware of and will really like. What can we do for them, not what can they do for us.

We musn't be desperate or look desperate. Take time and pleasure in speaking of what floats your boat here.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 01:17:24 pm
Making a list of people who had to be moderated proves one thing: moderation works!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 01:18:39 pm
How lost we are without High Max. How deprived of DarthWang! How cruelly we persecuted Nakura, who only wanted to post the same threads on every forum on the internet.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 15, 2017, 01:21:11 pm
Alright mjn, then I'll just keep this very short. No Battuta. It's not just about me. And you know this too. I'm far from the only one talking here, and I could reel off a list of names of targetted people, and I'm sure others could too.

On social media pushing of Freespace, what I think is really important is to go into it with a mindset of doing it for others, not for us. Not forcing it, not trying to get people in, trying to help people find something they are unaware of and will really like. What can we do for them, not what can they do for us.

We musn't be desperate or look desperate. Take time and pleasure in speaking of what floats your boat here.

Do NOT, I repeat, NOT continue this line of posting in this thread. If you have issues with the moderation staff, bring them up in the appropriate forums, not here.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 15, 2017, 01:22:58 pm
So we've talked to death about GD and the *ahem* things that happen there. Ok, cool. Opinions made known.

Who's up for some Social Media discussion again? Anyone chomping at the bit to basically make their role here about playing mods, taking screenshots, and posting them on an HLP Instagram?

I run the HLP Twitter account (which mostly means that I let IFTTT and RSS post to it when there's Announcements or Highlights). But I'm going to try and post more often and also want to get a few others the ability to post to it.

How about Facebook? I don't use Facebook. What do people post there these days? Anyone up for posting fake news articles that only reinforce their opinion on HLP's status interesting tidbits about FSO, it's upgrades, and campaigns?

/obviousattemptatrefocusingthethread

Hit me up on IRC later, I got some ideas I want to bounce off of you. :)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 01:23:40 pm
Los Mèmes: Men Persecuted by Moderators of Evi

I'm sorry it was so good I had to post it
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 15, 2017, 01:33:51 pm
I've said I'm willing to help with Facebook and Youtube/Twitch stuff but it's not my call

Sure it is! Take it away.

Not really, there needs to be talk about who owns what in terms of running facebooks pages, twitch streams and other things. Also a lot of these things already exist so it would require getting access to these things to do posts.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on February 15, 2017, 02:10:13 pm
I would like to see that, Goober. It would be nice to add. Is it possible to have it be retroactively added to existing threads?

I don't understand the question.  You can add tags to whatever threads you want, whether the threads are old or new.

If you mean retroactively generated tags, none of the tags are generated.  They are all assigned by human forum members.


offtopic
Btw why frontlines release topic is not pinned and why FL team never brought this campaign to the installer?

I've repeatedly prodded them to add it to the installer; in fact I offered both Lorric and Black Wolf help with creating an installer text file.  Neither took me up on it.


Yes, but is there a way for tags to be community-moderated? We don't need trolls tagging something maliciously and it having the same level of legitimacy as an accurate tag. Community moderation would be good, or perhaps something where any given tag doesn't show on a thread until X number of people have suggested it?

The mod would only allow people with tag permissions to tag and untag threads.


That's pretty silly, surely it can be bundled into a Windows binary?

Easier said than done, but there is actually a way to do this if one jumps through some hoops.  I'll see if I can dig it up.


Maybe attach it to some special SVN with access for only project heads and only to their folders? No more redownloading gigs of files just to have new, patched version? I used to release pathes to SG as separate modfolders, but this sucked. Anyway probably less, than rereleases of whole mods like BP used to do.

I'm almost finished a feature for the FSO Installer that will allow modders to specify patches in addition to full downloads.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 15, 2017, 03:03:43 pm
I don't remember the use-case, but I'm working on a Netflix style mod selection mock-up. Would be handy to use the an installer/launcher combo.. nebula maybe?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 15, 2017, 03:08:12 pm
Battuta is ****ing owning this thread. +1 for all his posts in here.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 15, 2017, 03:14:38 pm
+1 for Spoon's post

This post gains +1 from Spoon's post, causing it to grant +2 to Spoon's post, causing Spoon's post to grant +3 to this post, infinite loop established, Spoonttuta becomes admin
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 15, 2017, 03:16:33 pm
There are two active hard-light facebook entities at this time......one page, one group.

Which has more functionality?  Also there is www.facebook.com/buntuscum
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 15, 2017, 04:25:03 pm
+1 for Spoon's post

This post gains +1 from Spoon's post, causing it to grant +2 to Spoon's post, causing Spoon's post to grant +3 to this post, infinite loop established, Spoonttuta becomes admin
Unlimited powerrrr
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 15, 2017, 04:48:17 pm
Cheers.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 15, 2017, 05:35:31 pm
And with everyone posting here, is there anyone interested in joining an HLP Aide team that I suggested? Because we can talk all day about reorganizing the forum, but if we actually want to get people to play and to mod, we need to make the game and mods easier to install and have references easier to find. In a perfect world, you wouldn't need the forum to find new content. It'd be on the installer or on the wiki. The forums should be for discussion or engagement with modders and other like-minded players.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 15, 2017, 05:56:09 pm
I'm totally up for making the tools I already use to play things a better way for me to play things, so I'd be up for both the installer and releases team. Is there a sign up process? Or will me signing up actually mean that I have some role in defining what these teams actually do because y'all haven't defined that yet?

I'm also really insecure and terrified that I will break everything. Is that a problem?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 15, 2017, 06:16:07 pm
I'm also really insecure and terrified that I will break everything. Is that a problem?

Saaaaaame D:
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 15, 2017, 06:24:11 pm
Well I'm just curious about interest at the moment. I don't think we need a lot of aides, maybe 2 or 3 per group? I listed in the google doc what I feel the roles and actions they would take are, but if you've (or anyone) got some other ideas, I'm all ears.

Also no one worry about breaking stuff. I mean I've lasted 2 years here as admin and haven't broken anything... yeeeeeet...

EDIT: As proof of this, I'd like to point out that when modifying boards, the Modify Board and Delete Board buttons are RIGHT next to each other. Have you seen any boards suddenly go missing yet? QED Don't worry. :cool:
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 15, 2017, 06:33:29 pm
It can't be as bad as me accidently pointing the spam shredder on an innocent user. Does SMF allow for soft-deletions?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on February 15, 2017, 07:22:16 pm
Of course 5 minutes after posting my last post, HLP does down. I am literally the best admin ever.

Again, don't worry about breaking stuff.

If anyone is interested or has ideas or questions relating to the aides, post a quip here or PM me. I'm all caught up in getting something released in a week so I don't think we'd start much until like March or something.

Anyway, I just started an HLP Youtube page. (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxKkd609hDtY6yNetR1iT4w) So subscribe to it, we'll subscribe back to you and we'll... think of things to do with it. (Mjn, make some pretty channel art for it!!) If we get 100 subscribers (and after 30 days) we can apply for a human readable URL, which I think would be pretty cool.

EDIT: Also whoever has like owner access to the facebook or reddit stuff could get in contact with me, that'd be cool.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: DahBlount on February 15, 2017, 08:20:14 pm
I can do work with either the wiki or installer aide teams. Additionally, because I am a "cool" and "hip" youngster, I can give assistance to the marketing team if need be.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 15, 2017, 09:16:42 pm
Also there is www.facebook.com/buntuscum

"Sorry, this content isn't available right now

The link you followed may have expired, or the page may only be visible to an audience you're not in."

FYI
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on February 15, 2017, 10:34:40 pm
I can do work with either the wiki or installer aide teams. Additionally, because I am a "cool" and "hip" youngster, I can give assistance to the marketing team if need be.

I'll send you a PM.  I've got some ideas about both the wiki and the installer.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 15, 2017, 11:19:21 pm
Interviews were super cool! But the last one was done literally 3 years ago. Let's do them again!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on February 15, 2017, 11:33:41 pm
We used to have a group of Interviewers; it could be thought of as a forerunner of one of the HLP Aide groups.  Feel like interviewing someone, JSRNerdo?  Pick a topic, pick a person, and do the interview, and I'll give you an Interviewers badge.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 16, 2017, 12:39:05 am
Also there is www.facebook.com/buntuscum

"Sorry, this content isn't available right now

The link you followed may have expired, or the page may only be visible to an audience you're not in."

FYI


Do a search for UEF.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 16, 2017, 09:42:05 am
Of course 5 minutes after posting my last post, HLP does down. I am literally the best admin ever.

Again, don't worry about breaking stuff.

If anyone is interested or has ideas or questions relating to the aides, post a quip here or PM me. I'm all caught up in getting something released in a week so I don't think we'd start much until like March or something.

Anyway, I just started an HLP Youtube page. (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxKkd609hDtY6yNetR1iT4w) So subscribe to it, we'll subscribe back to you and we'll... think of things to do with it. (Mjn, make some pretty channel art for it!!) If we get 100 subscribers (and after 30 days) we can apply for a human readable URL, which I think would be pretty cool.

EDIT: Also whoever has like owner access to the facebook or reddit stuff could get in contact with me, that'd be cool.

Subbed.

Idea:  Pinned thread with a list of all HLP social media accounts.  Then everyone can get their fix the way they want to get it.  We've already got most of them in the HLP drop-down menu (speaking of which, add YT to that list?)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 11:06:08 am
Idea: you play a campaign and post your thoughts!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 16, 2017, 11:14:50 am
OK, so I posted a fun thing on Twitter today and was surprised by one of the responses and thought it was relevant to our push into Social Media. One guy knows about HLP enough to follow the Twitter account, but had no idea we had a new HTL Apollo. I feel like that says something significant.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 16, 2017, 11:41:24 am
Idea: you play a campaign and post your thoughts!

`Oi! You could also be ensuring that Blue Planet gets Knossos support (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0). You could download and try Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) so that you can better help in ensuring that our community in general gets Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) support because Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) is a beautifull installer that just lets you click on a campaign, and then it sorts out all the dependencies for you! Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) is the future of the FS2 community and you could be preparing BP for that and help ngld make it happen! You could post your thoughts on how Knossos can be better then the FSO installer we have now! Which in turn helps other people play your campaigns and let's them post their thoughts!

--

That goes for everybody, actually. I do think Knossos has the potential to open up FS2 to a larger audience by virtue of it being this "install and launch" program. Mod makers in this thread: Help make that happen!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 16, 2017, 11:52:41 am
`Oi! You could also be ensuring that Blue Planet gets Knossos support (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0). You could download and try Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) so that you can better help in ensuring that our community in general gets Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) support because Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) is a beautifull installer that just lets you click on a campaign, and then it sorts out all the dependencies for you! Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) is the future of the FS2 community and you could be preparing BP for that and help ngld make it happen! You could post your thoughts on how Knossos can be better then the FSO installer we have now! Which in turn helps other people play your campaigns and let's them post their thoughts!

--

That goes for everybody, actually. I do think Knossos has the potential to open up FS2 to a larger audience by virtue of it being this "install and launch" program. Mod makers in this thread: Help make that happen!
The existence of Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) has eluded me up until this post. So I am glad that you pointed out that Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) is a thing. I shall make some time to look at Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) this week and will provide my thoughts about Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) in the Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) thread. At brief glance Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0) seems very promising  :yes:
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 16, 2017, 12:37:20 pm
Idea: you play a campaign and post your thoughts!

With all due respect, I don't think sniping at people like this is in anyone's interest.



Dekker, maybe I'm dense, but I'm not finding anything. :(
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 16, 2017, 12:44:04 pm
Try the link again. I'll check the privacy settings on the page.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 16, 2017, 12:45:39 pm
I need to also get BtA on Knossos....
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 12:47:17 pm
Idea: you play a campaign and post your thoughts!

With all due respect, I don't think sniping at people like this is in anyone's interest.

I am the Lorax and I speak for the mods. Getting people to play FSO is in everyone's interest here.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 12:48:26 pm
Knossos looks dope.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 16, 2017, 12:49:21 pm
No: You don't speak for the mods.

Yes: Getting people to play FSO is in everyone's interest.

xeno's right. Please stop sniping at people and inciting ill-will.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 12:58:34 pm
I speak for the mods because I actually play the damn things.

Get involved. Play. Talk about what you've played. That'll help more than any amount of posting here.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 16, 2017, 01:00:49 pm
You speak for yourself Battuta - remember that.

Any more blatant disregard for forum policy (attacking other members, inciting conflict) will result in warnings and moderation action. People, including myself, are tired of you acting like you're better than everyone else. Be a decent human being and respect others.

This is a thread for bettering HLP, not steamrolling everyone you disagree with.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 01:10:19 pm
Lol, 'moderation action'. I speak for the people who make stuff here. We get our work done on IRC, SVN, private forums, whatever. We're used to being randomly banned or monkeyed because Being Mean On A Forum is more important than actually making mods. It doesn't matter.

You are here to serve a community as a moderator. For some reason being asked to do this makes you feel like you're being attacked. Being told that you should play a game makes you feel like you're being told you're inferior. You need to get over this.

Let me be even clearer!

What incites the most ill will among HLP's modders is being adminned and moderated and 'helped' by people who don't seem to care or even want to be involved.

The E rules cause he works on SCP. Axem rules cause he's the world's best fredder. Kara's busy but still tries to push ahead on Diaspora. Goob does stuff like the installer. Zacam runs SVNs, so does Rev. BW makes tons of models.

Get back in the game.

If you think it's indecent or disrespectful to be asked to earn the leadership position you've been given, you can get mad about it! But I ask you instead to better HLP.

Is it steamrolling those I disagree when I tell you to play FS? Awesome. I hope I'm steamrolling you into playing some great mods.

You are not Joe Player. You're a global moderator. You need to show the flag.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 01:12:52 pm
The simplest I can make it:

Why does being asked to play FSO and post about it make you feel like you're being personally attacked?

What else are we here for?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 01:14:04 pm
Are you - and I mean this for all of HLP - here to help people make and enjoy mods, or to...I don't know, collect badges and win arguments?

Play a damn mod!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 16, 2017, 01:15:34 pm
I agree with Battuta on this. Play mods, comment on them.
I honestly never understood why we've got 'HLP staff' that refuses to actually be involved with the primary thing HLP is about. It just sets a bad example imo, fostering this continued atmosphere that its okay for HLP 'figureheads' to be uncaring.

Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 16, 2017, 01:18:30 pm
Nonetheless, a proposal about HLP presence on social media should not be met with criticism over how many mods the proposer has played.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 01:24:48 pm
Nonetheless, a proposal about HLP presence on social media should not be met with criticism over how many mods the proposer has played.

A pattern of 'helpful ideas' without taking the time to play the game and post a post should be met with criticism. Yes; real life gets in the way. Money's tight. Life sucks. But at some point it becomes clear you're not even trying.

Again, this is not a critique I'd level at Joe Player. But if you're going to talk about FSO, then walk the FSO.

If you want to punish me for saying "please play FSO", that's cool. It's happened before, it'll happen again. Still worth saying.

But like Spoon says, this is what we've been complaining about in dev circles for years. Mods and admins show up to make decisions about stuff they've never paid any attention to until they got a report email. Mods and admins don't care about cool work, they care about hurt feelings in a site feedback thread. And when it's time to Talk About HLP, people will talk and talk -

But they won't open the damn game and play BtA!

I want to be crucified on two huge molybdenum beams tile mapped with the words PLAY A MOD.

Knossos looks dope af, will be testing that out tonight.

Battuta out for now
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 01:26:37 pm
Wait Battuta not out!

Imagine if every post in this thread were matched by one post about FS.

I challenge you all to meet this goal. Before your next post here, play a mod and post just once. Or watch a trailer. Or view a p3d.

Myself included!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 16, 2017, 01:29:04 pm
This thread has almost 300 replies
That is more than BtA and JAD's discussion threads combined.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 16, 2017, 01:33:22 pm
This whole thing dips into a "no true Scotsman" argument, where the badge of how many mods you've played is held above your head constantly. If you haven't played then you're not good enough to comment on forum matters? That's the gist.

HLP is about modding Freespace, but it's also a community. I don't play a 20 year old game, but I do peruse HLP's gaming, GD, art, etc. forums. I also look at the art.

But the way you keep phrasing it Battuta, the only way anyone's opinion matters on HLP is if they actually play the game. I played BtA...and then stopped because Freespace kept crashing. But hey, I played it - so by your own metric, you should listen to what I have to say.

You're leading people on a red herring by playing the victim - I'm not bringing this up because you're saying people should play FSO. If that's all you said, well...I doubt you would post so many times in a row at least. I'm bringing it up because there's already a moderator report for one of your posts, with supporting evidence of your mean-spirited ways in other threads as well. You've got an ego, man, and it makes you treat people in a really ****ty way. Check it at the door and remember that you're part of a larger community.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 16, 2017, 01:33:50 pm
I will say that Battuta has my full backing in this. We cannot be advocates for this site and its games if we don't play them. HLP is at its strongest when it does cool things or talks about cool things or gets hyped about whatever comes out of Spoon's brain next, not when we're Talking About Serious Political Things or Serious Forum Politics.

So yes. Be involved. Don't be random moderator guy swooping in to wag your finger.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 16, 2017, 01:37:09 pm
HLP is about modding Freespace, but it's also a community. I don't play a 20 year old game, but I do peruse HLP's gaming, GD, art, etc. forums. I also look at the art.

Is HLP about Bringing Modders Together, or is it about Bringing People Who Were Modders 12 Years Ago Together?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 16, 2017, 01:37:45 pm
So if you're not a modder you should leave - is that what you're saying Phantom Hoover? :)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 16, 2017, 01:40:17 pm
When I got bored of Bionicle, I left the Bionicle forums and moved on to other things. I didn't hang around their boards to ****post about politics and forum drama. 12-year-old me did a lot of stupid **** but I think he had the right idea there.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Unknown Target on February 16, 2017, 01:42:42 pm
You didn't answer my question. If you believe HLP should only be for modders, fine - then that cuts out anyone who just plays the game. If you believe that it should only be for modders and players, then fine - that cuts out everyone who's just here for the community/art/etc. But what do you believe?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on February 16, 2017, 01:44:11 pm
Hoover is a fan. He plays things. He gets involved with the community. That's all we can expect from a normal member of the community. He's the guy the actual creators on this site make **** for. His presence on the board is its whole point, in a sense.

Yes, HLP values creators highly. That's as it should be. But at the same time, we must also value the fans, the people who actually play the **** we make. In the hierarchy of users here, those are the only two that matter.

People who come here just for the politics? They're .... less important (sorry, GD peeps).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 01:48:36 pm
You didn't answer my question. If you believe HLP should only be for modders, fine - then that cuts out anyone who just plays the game. If you believe that it should only be for modders and players, then fine - that cuts out everyone who's just here for the community/art/etc. But what do you believe?

Got rolling with Knossos! (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.msg1842281#new) to match this post.

HLP is for modders and players. That doesn't cut out people who are just here for the community/art - those things will continue to exist.

But when you're talking about how to make HLP more active, but not working to make HLP more active, you're just contributing to the problem.

And when you're a global moderator (!) - notice that word, Global, all of HLP! - you better fish or cut bait. Your flag says I'm about what this site is about. You've gotta carry that flag.

Come on. How is this discussion harder than just opening the game? Did you have crash problems with BtA? Post a debug log, let's get to fixing them! Have you tried The Antagonist? Short campaign, completely fantastic.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 16, 2017, 02:11:08 pm
HLP is for everyone.

What would steak say.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 16, 2017, 02:31:16 pm
Battuta, I can see the issue you're bringing up, but shutting down an uncontroversial suggestion regarding advertising HLP is not the way to raise it. I agree with many of your points, but the way you're raising them is a problem. Stop sniping at people. You're not going to accomplish anything.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 02:43:19 pm
Did you match that post with a contribution to an FS-related topic? (I matched this one!) No backseat moderating, brutha!

Stop posting about posting. Play! Post about playing! I'm accomplishing the only thing that matters. Join me! ****ing play a modddd
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 16, 2017, 02:53:17 pm
Redacted.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on February 16, 2017, 02:56:33 pm
Arguments will always have larger postcounts than campaign discussion threads. But if every person who posted here actually played and posted some feedback(either on the forums or IRC) on a mod in the last month HLP would seem a lot more active.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 02:57:38 pm
No, mate, I'm saying what had to be said after years of frustration and deadlock. The last couple pages (and the accompanying IRC conversation) made that very plain. If you want to poke at it further, take it to PM; if not, let's keep focused on the thread topic of how to make HLP better. Tone policing is a waste of time.

Now I owe one FS post, I am a sinner.

Arguments will always have larger postcounts than campaign discussion threads. But if every person who posted here actually played and posted some feedback(either on the forums or IRC) on a mod in the last month HLP would seem a lot more active.

Beautifully put.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AndrewofDoom on February 16, 2017, 03:18:36 pm
In regards to new people who want to get in, it's a reaaaaaaallly hard thing to start a project on your own and complete it. But, here's the problem. Making things easier would be joining a currently existing project. There's just one problem I've seen since 2011, there is absolutely no open recruitment for any project. I got involved in modding back in 2010, and as a new guy way back, I used to be very intimidated on working on any sort of project by myself so I joined Stellar Assault who was openly recruiting. And then it died a year and a half later, but either way it let me learn so many things. I want to do the same thing and start a project which openly recruits with a low barrier to entry, but I'm entirely sure how to go about that since I'm absolutely garbage at the charisma game.

I want to ask those newer at modding of any sort in FSO how do you feel about being (from what I see) alone for the most part?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 16, 2017, 03:21:18 pm
It's very disheartening, especially with the docs being so poor-to-nonexistent. Knowing that I have a story to tell is basically the only motivation I can find, and at the same time I'm aware that that's dangerously close to megaproject syndrome.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 16, 2017, 03:24:12 pm
Hi I guess I'm a quarter of the eligible userbase of which can answer that. I honestly abandoned a good 80% of my projects because they were too overdone or conventional or just didn't interest me. I guess the trick is to just find a niche you'll start off good at and interested in, start small (both my releases are single missions) and build up from there!

Also joining a project from my current experience trying to join inferno is as simple as post you want to help, have a Polish dude direct you to contact the project lead then fire off a one-liner to the project lead. Admittedly a lot easier with just a pinned topic on how to apply or volunteer.

Will second the poor docs, though. I think basically the only thing that lead to the actual release of Last Stand being decent at all was me hanging out in IRC all the time and constantly bugging Axem for help.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 03:24:52 pm
Inferno wants FREDders real bad, so does BWO, and learning Inferno-level (i.e. retail plus a few tricks) FREDding is very simple and just a matter of practicing a few missions and dissecting a few more. Reliable FREDders are always in demand.

JSRN has been doing a good job posting single missions and getting some play and feedback. If you can do that you have a portfolio to show to a project. Lepanto got recruited by Inferno and BP on the strength of his own missions, but then dumped everything to go work on his own game.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 16, 2017, 03:44:30 pm
BWO is completely dead though, don't bother with that one.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AndrewofDoom on February 16, 2017, 03:59:17 pm
Okay, so Inferno is recruiting. But I don't see them openly recruiting with a thread saying "I NEED X,Y,Z". Which I think is the problem. New people don't see anywhere they can help, and that's part of my point.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 16, 2017, 04:03:11 pm
I wonder if there'd be some worth in having like a bulletin board sort of sticky thread, where the OP gets updated with the list of projects looking for people and what kind of people they want and people post into it about positions opening up, being filled, and asking questions about positions.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 16, 2017, 04:07:52 pm
Arguments will always have larger postcounts than campaign discussion threads. But if every person who posted here actually played and posted some feedback(either on the forums or IRC) on a mod in the last month HLP would seem a lot more active.

I actually didn't know the value of this (it probably helps that I only once created a thing and that it was a table mod). I'm often late to the party when it comes to playing campaigns so when it's all over I don't feel like I can say something that other people haven't already said.

... Does this mean I have a backlog of praise for campaigns alongside the backlog of campaigns?  :shaking:
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 16, 2017, 04:50:42 pm
I wonder if there'd be some worth in having like a bulletin board sort of sticky thread, where the OP gets updated with the list of projects looking for people and what kind of people they want and people post into it about positions opening up, being filled, and asking questions about positions.

!!! Throwing my support behind this, for whatever it's worth!



Joshua: Speaking as a creative type here, I doubt you can ever go wrong praising someone's work :) Besides, if we're gonna try to attract people, there should be more people playing through older mods, so it'd be great to get that precedent out there!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 16, 2017, 05:21:59 pm
I'd just like to chime in that I also agree that we need more people playing and talking about mods (I myself have a sizeable backlog of FSO mods to play that I'm kinda hoping to start tackling once 3.8 is out) and do not understand why asking people to play FSO on HLP is seen as "sniping"... but I digress. I actually want to talk about something specific that might have gotten buried by the new page.

I played BtA...and then stopped because Freespace kept crashing.
I couldn't find any posts by you since BtA's release talking about a crash (except this one); if I missed it, feel free to link it to me. However, this brings me to another point of Battuta's I want to reinforce (and this is for everyone, not just Unknown Target in particular):
Did you have crash problems with BtA? Post a debug log, let's get to fixing them!
If we don't hear about crash problems, we can't fix them! Did FSO crash for you? Did it just do something weird? Was it frustrating? Was it just annoying? Well, if you don't post about it, I can virtually guarantee that nothing will change. If you're lucky, though, it might be a known problem and somebody can fix it for you, or point you to the fix! It might be a known bug that was already fixed (and maybe the fix will even be in the next nightly build), or it might be a completely unknown problem that we wouldn't have known needed fixed if not for you. So post your debug logs!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 16, 2017, 08:28:56 pm
Re: Sniping. Yes, people need to play more. But getting more people into the forum is important too and shutting down people's ideas just because you feel they haven't played enough just makes this place look bad to anyone who is new here. When you're shouting at someone with only around 100 posts that they need to play FS2 in order to be allowed an opinion, it's not the most welcoming thing you could do.

There are ways to get people to play more. And shaming them into doing it isn't a good one. I mean I could point out that neither Battuta nor any of the people who agreed with his posts (except for Ralwood) have actually posted on the What Freespace are you (Re)Playing Now? (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93066.0) thread and tried to act like that made them bad people. But that's not productive. I'd just rather ask nicely for people to post on there a bit more.



I wonder if there'd be some worth in having like a bulletin board sort of sticky thread, where the OP gets updated with the list of projects looking for people and what kind of people they want and people post into it about positions opening up, being filled, and asking questions about positions.


That's actually a very good idea. It used to be that any promising modeller or FREDder would get bombarded with "join my mod!!!1111" posts cause everyone was desperate for new team members. At some point it seems that we decided that was gauche and stopped doing it. But since it was never replaced with anything a lot of teams have ended up not hiring new blood to replace those lost to attrition.

Anyway, I like the idea and if no one has any issues I'll make a new board along those lines tomorrow.

It's very disheartening, especially with the docs being so poor-to-nonexistent. Knowing that I have a story to tell is basically the only motivation I can find, and at the same time I'm aware that that's dangerously close to megaproject syndrome.

What are you having problems finding the documentation for?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 16, 2017, 09:03:39 pm
There are ways to get people to play more. And shaming them into doing it isn't a good one. I mean I could point out that neither Battuta nor any of the people who agreed with his posts (except for Ralwood) have actually posted on the What Freespace are you (Re)Playing Now? (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93066.0) thread and tried to act like that made them bad people. But that's not productive. I'd just rather ask nicely for people to post on there a bit more.
It wouldn't be very effective shaming method either, because Battuta has been making posts in the BtA discussion thread (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=92712.msg1841650#msg1841650) recently. It's not like he isn't putting into practice what he is preaching.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 16, 2017, 09:33:35 pm
That was 4 days ago. What has he done for me lately? :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 16, 2017, 10:02:43 pm
When you're shouting at someone with only around 100 posts that they need to play FS2 in order to be allowed an opinion, it's not the most welcoming thing you could do.
...and if anyone had actually done that, then you might have a point.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 16, 2017, 10:45:51 pm
Really? (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93134.msg1842291#msg1842291)

Now get back on topic instead of arguing about forum drama. Or take Battuta's advice and play something!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 16, 2017, 11:02:28 pm
Really? (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93134.msg1842291#msg1842291)
Now point to where Battuta "shouted" that
they need to play FS2 in order to be allowed an opinion
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 16, 2017, 11:24:09 pm
Seriously, get off this topic.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 16, 2017, 11:28:18 pm
[shamelessselfplug]I recommend playing The Last Stand and posting your thoughts about it in the release thread instead of arguing about this ****[/shamelessselfplug]
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 16, 2017, 11:34:23 pm
Re: Sniping. Yes, people need to play more. But getting more people into the forum is important too and shutting down people's ideas just because you feel they haven't played enough just makes this place look bad to anyone who is new here. When you're shouting at someone with only around 100 posts that they need to play FS2 in order to be allowed an opinion, it's not the most welcoming thing you could do.

Never did, mate. He was confused as to why I was begging UT/JR2/etc to play more: I told him. At no point did he and I discuss whether he was allowed to have an opinion: the topic at hand was the people who I actually told to play some damn FSO!

If you're going to be a global mod or a long-time vet, then yeah, you better play some FS2 if you want to be involved in a conversation. Shame 'em if they don't. We've had years of the polite method. If long-time members are offended that they're being asked to play FSO, there's an easy fun fix.

I've successfully installed Knossos! Hopefully my vote for 'its not a virus' will make some difference.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 16, 2017, 11:46:04 pm
Never did, mate.

Actually there were reports that you did. So even if you didn't mean it to come off that way, that's how it sounded to quite a few other people.

Quote
If you're going to be a global mod or a long-time vet, then yeah, you better play some FS2 if you want to be involved in a conversation.

Now I tend to agree with that to some extent. If people are going to recommend things, they should know what they are talking about. But that doesn't mean that you should be telling people to play more FS2 on this thread as if that is the only thing that matters. If someone hasn't played FS2 for ten years, perhaps it might be worth finding out why they haven't played for that long instead of trying to bully them into playing more and then saying they shouldn't be offended by it. Someone who hasn't played FS2 in a long time sounds a hell of lot like one of our target audiences.


Anyway, can we get back on topic now, please? If you want to talk more about the issue, PM me.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 17, 2017, 12:05:08 am
This is the topic. You yourself said:
When you're shouting at someone with only around 100 posts that they need to play FS2 in order to be allowed an opinion, it's not the most welcoming thing you could do.
(Emphasis mine.)

This whole thread is about how we can improve the community, is it not? How is this not on-topic?

Personally, I think a mod saying "you're being mean, but I'm not going to specifically point out how, and when you ask for clarification I'll tell you to drop it" is more unwelcoming than one long-time member of HLP telling another long-time member of HLP that they should play more FSO, but that's just me.

Also:
trying to bully them into playing more
"Bully them into playing more"? What does that even mean? It's not like he threatened to ban them if they didn't play more FSO because, and I don't know how you forgot, but the one with the power in the conversation isn't Battuta.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 17, 2017, 12:06:08 am
Sure. The only thing I want to say in direct response is also productive — we should be finding out why they're not playing, which is why Ralwood and I hope UT will post the debug log from the BtA crashes!

Ralwood, it's cool, I appreciate it but let's move on.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 17, 2017, 12:12:57 am
Ugh, seriously guys?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 17, 2017, 12:32:32 am
So, what about this idea of having a Help Wanted board?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AndrewofDoom on February 17, 2017, 01:06:09 am
So, what about this idea of having a Help Wanted board?

I'm struggling to articulate why I don't really like the idea. I don't know, my gut feeling is I'm not sure if that's a good idea. Yeah, it aggregates all the possible help that currently existing projects need, but... I don't know, it draws away the attention from the project board (at least if it has one)? I guess it would be viable if project boards are removed or ones that don't have one can make a thread there.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 17, 2017, 01:18:21 am
There's no reason you couldn't advertise for help on both. I wasn't planning on taking the Diaspora one down even if I did put a new one up.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 17, 2017, 02:21:32 am
There's no reason why help recruitment isn't handled on a different platform like Facebook?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AndrewofDoom on February 17, 2017, 02:22:06 am
I rather not touch Facebook.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on February 17, 2017, 02:22:34 am
There's no reason why help recruitment isn't handled on a different platform like Facebook?

Well, I don't use facebook, I use HLP. :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 17, 2017, 02:44:12 am
There's no reason why help recruitment isn't handled on a different platform like Facebook?

Well we're certainly going to have to expand to using Facebook and other social media for recruiting but in the end we're going to have to get them to join the forum if they want to join any team.

I rather not touch Facebook.

Most of us wouldn't. That's why the userbase here has shrunk and why we're nowhere near as well known as other modding projects which haven't achieved halfway near as much as we have. It's unfortunate but we have to change.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 17, 2017, 03:46:22 am
Well I've already posted a link to here in an elite dangerous page with 1.4k likes.  That can only be positive.  Oh wait.....I'm backing it up with a freespace post.

I like windmills.  We need more campaigns by that guy.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Lorric on February 17, 2017, 04:12:35 am
There's no reason you couldn't advertise for help on both.
Exactly. This isn't a one or the other thing. Indeed, if it was me, and I had my own board, or even just my own campaign development thread, I'd advertise in both. I would recommend advertising in both.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Black Wolf on February 17, 2017, 07:33:24 am
Took some initiative and set this up:

https://www.instagram.com/freespacehlp/

I'll be adding more on a regular basis and experienting with various hashtags, for now.

If anyone who should have them wants the login details I'm more than happy to share.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on February 17, 2017, 08:01:50 am
Took some initiative and set this up:

https://www.instagram.com/freespacehlp/

I'll be adding more on a regular basis and experienting with various hashtags, for now.

If anyone who should have them wants the login details I'm more than happy to share.

Ah, this is a super good idea! Instagram is where it's at
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 17, 2017, 10:48:36 am
On a few rare occasions, I've seen posts of animated gifs of indie devs move to the front page of Imgur. Which is needless to say, a lot of free exposure.
So following Black Wolf's example of taking some initiative, I created a HLP imgur account: http://imgur.com/user/Freespace2HLP
I'll create some public galleries filled with Freespace related screenshots and gifv's soonish. What I'll need some help with though, is for someone to write a compelling public profile blurb. (Currently it's just a link to the forums, I'd link the front page but its absolutely ****ing dreadful in its current state) Additionally, this imgur account won't really add any extra value unless the posts created with it get a bunch of upvotes to kickstart it into visibility.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 17, 2017, 11:33:28 am
That'd be a good one to upload the finer shots from a celebration of free space to. 

Instagram more for the screen shot thread winners and "glamorous" stills.  :pimp:  :yes:


Edit--shared both groups on facebook. Cross "platform" support is key! :) tweets may be required.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Sandwich on February 17, 2017, 03:28:50 pm
If someone hasn't played FS2 for ten years, perhaps it might be worth finding out why they haven't played for that long instead of trying to bully them into playing more and then saying they shouldn't be offended by it. Someone who hasn't played FS2 in a long time sounds a hell of lot like one of our target audiences.

*sheepishly waves*

I, uhh... I fit into that category. :o

The main reason I stopped playing FreeSpace was because way back at the beginning, I had a joystick button config meticulously set up for FS2, and a few years later the joystick died. It took me ages until I could find another joystick that could emulate the most valued feature of the dead joystick—the shift button (i.e. main trigger was fire current primary weapons, whereas shift+main trigger would cycle through the selected primary weapons).

Anyway, all that to say, my muscle memory of the old joystick's button mappings made anything less comprehensive frusting, and by the time I got a worthy joystick with shift key functionality, well—I had both forgotten the old mappings and become busy with RL™ stuff.

So yeah, that's my story of why I haven't FS2'd in years. On the other hand, I've had it in the back of my mind that while building out the frontpage and the mandatory installation guide that would go along with it, I'd try it out step-by-step to get screenshots and the like, and perhaps end up—*gasp!*—actually playing a mod! I hear BP's pretty good... ;)

So, what about this idea of having a Help Wanted board?

I'm struggling to articulate why I don't really like the idea. I don't know, my gut feeling is I'm not sure if that's a good idea. Yeah, it aggregates all the possible help that currently existing projects need, but... I don't know, it draws away the attention from the project board (at least if it has one)? I guess it would be viable if project boards are removed or ones that don't have one can make a thread there.

Noted. I think for Phase 2 of the website (which includes Project Hub pages on the site), I'll include checkboxes for the various types of talents needed by projects—modellers, texture artists, FREDders, etc—so a project can tick whatever box they have need for. :)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: -Joshua- on February 18, 2017, 02:45:20 am
FS2 plays just as well with a mouse, Sandwich! :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 18, 2017, 03:33:41 am
FS2 plays just as well with a mouse, Sandwich! :p

I'm a keyboard purist.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AndrewofDoom on February 18, 2017, 07:59:24 am
Just as a note, Karajorma has made the Help Wanted (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?board=262.0) board. I've made my post on help wanted for a noobs2pro project.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 18, 2017, 03:46:54 pm
You know what really might get me back into FSO, once I get a good graphics card?  The ability to play multi that isn't a lag-fest.  When you need playtesters for ironing out multi, I'll try to help with that.  But yeah, I'll play some new FSO stuff once I get the new card.  I actually quit playing Subnautica for the most part for the same reason (hard playing at 20FPS dipping to 8FPS occasionally).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 18, 2017, 03:51:22 pm
Multi is not going to happen. FSO is a single-player project now. We don't have the resources to fix it or the playerbase to make it worthwhile.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 18, 2017, 03:56:21 pm
Multi is not going to happen. FSO is a single-player project now. We don't have the resources to fix it or the playerbase to make it worthwhile.

I thought karajorma had it on the backburner?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 18, 2017, 04:06:53 pm
With the best will in the world, Karajorma presumably has the next release of Diaspora higher on his list of priorities, and look how long that's taking. Multi, if it ever happens, will take several years. I think we can probably get promising results from a more proactive marketing strategy and a better installer within the year, so it's worth focusing our attention on that rather than multi.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 18, 2017, 05:07:47 pm
Multi is not going to happen. FSO is a single-player project now. We don't have the resources to fix it or the playerbase to make it worthwhile.

I thought karajorma had it on the backburner?
Multi has been "on the backburner" for, like, a decade (if not longer). Without a coder that knows netcode, someone would have to basically learn how it works from scratch to be able to perform even marginal improvements, and nobody has that kind of time for something that our active playerbase does not use (of course, improved netcode would increase our potential playerbase significantly... but the people who currently use FSO obviously don't use it for multiplayer).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 18, 2017, 05:15:27 pm
I know it's a massive codebase, but I've been looking for a project and wouldn't mind taking a look. At the very least, I can get a sense of how quickly I should run away :P
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jg18 on February 18, 2017, 06:40:19 pm
[Cross-thread quoting FTW]

As some people know, I'm interested in improving the playability of Internet multiplayer, starting with FS2 retail and eventually branching out to mods/TCs. If you're interested in helping me test some things out once I'm ready for that, let me know by PM and I'll PM you when I have something ready to test. Be advised though that between RL and my other SCP tasks, it could be at least a few months before I can really look into it. EDIT: Also if you PM me, please let me know what time zone you're in. I'm in US Pacific Time (GMT-8).

PH: I don't think it'll take years of work to make multi playable, more like several months to a year (famous last words?) once I'm able to focus exclusively on the FSO netcode (there are a couple of other SCP tasks  that have to take higher priority for various reasons).

We've spent some time discussing the netcode in the SCP internal board  and at least some of us (namely taylor, chief, and I) think that the existing netcode might be able to be fixed up rather than our having to replace the netcode and rewrite it from scratch. I'm not 100% sure it'll work but I think it's definitely worth a shot.

We already have one piece of evidence that the netcode might be fixable: the high server pings that were being reported in game turned out to be the result of bad calculations (https://github.com/scp-fs2open/fs2open.github.com/pull/609) rather than actual lag.

AR: I've studied a fair bit of multi network programming in general  (although I still have quite a bit to learn) and have made significant progrress on understanding several components of the existing FSO netcode. I've done some work documenting what I've learned and have a fair bit more that I could write about what I've found. IF I ever find someone who's seriously interested in helping with the netcode, I can give them a brain dump of everything I've learned about the existing netcode  to help them get up to speed.

xenocartographer: if you're really interested in working on the netcode, PM  me and we can talk about it. You wouldn't need a strong knowledge of network programming or game network programming to start, although of course you'd need to learn it (I can point you to resources) but you would need reasonably strong C/C++ skills at the outset for it to be feasible. The netcode is admittedly not the easiest code to understand, but once you have some background in both general network programming and also multiplayer programming, the netcoe should start to click. But it does take some commitment. I don't want to scare you off but I want to give you realistic expectations for what it'd take.

It's true that the multi player base doesn't really exist anymore. I'm hoping that it'll be a case of "if you build it, they will come" but of course I don't know that'll happen :nervous: if a TC with a strong multi component releases, that'd help with attracting players who are interested in multi, although getting non-retail features working with the existing netcode is a considerably taller order than getting FS2 retail multi working.. By "several months to a year" that I mentioned above I was thinking FS2 retail multi only, with no support for mods/TCs multi or other non-retail features  yet. That'd come later.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 18, 2017, 06:51:56 pm
I started making a post http://imgur.com/a/lgu8K (as far as I understand Imgur, it isn't made public to usersub yet)
Turns out making actions gifs and gathering some screenshots is easy enough. But writing words isn't really my forte, kind of struggling to write a good short summary of FS2 and FSO.

Someone help me out here please.
Also feel free to write up some summary of the mods in there (I just took the descriptions of the mod.ini's for now).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 18, 2017, 06:59:24 pm
PH: I don't think it'll take years of work to make multi playable, more like several months to a year (famous last words?) once I'm able to focus exclusively on the FSO netcode (there are a couple of other SCP tasks  that have to take higher priority for various reasons).

I don't disagree, but in terms of practical real-world results? Who knows how long it'll be until you have several months to a year to focus exclusively on netcode. Blue Planet has, as I understand it, been 'several months of focused work' from a complete release for the better part of a decade now. Real lives get in the way of volunteer modding, and there's nothing wrong with that, but don't let's get distracted by stuff that could easily stay just around the corner for years.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 18, 2017, 07:23:40 pm
I started making a post http://imgur.com/a/lgu8K (as far as I understand Imgur, it isn't made public to usersub yet)
Turns out making actions gifs and gathering some screenshots is easy enough. But writing words isn't really my forte, kind of struggling to write a good short summary of FS2 and FSO.

Someone help me out here please.
Also feel free to write up some summary of the mods in there (I just took the descriptions of the mod.ini's for now).


Needs more hashtag. 
Words are perfunctory.  Hashtags get stuff noticed.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 18, 2017, 08:22:18 pm
Hashtags don't do much of anything on Imgur. Your post is gonna get seen no matter what; what matters is appealing to usersub, who will (hopefully!) upvote it to the front page.  To that end, I'd suggest more GIFs than still images, because frankly they're more eye-catching. Your opening GIF is also something of an odd choice because it doesn't really transition well at either end and also gives people the idea that the Infyrno is a good weeapon. If I were putting this together, I'd look into staging something that tells a little story - show a transport get blown up with the player coming in guns blazing a second too late, or something like The Little GVB Bakha That Couldn't from 4:44 in QD's Rebels and Renegades playthrough (https://youtu.be/tYXvQhL0Xfw), or... you get the idea. More images in general are also good, because Imgur's gonna want a lot of details, and textwalls don't go over so well on an image-sharing site.

The UEF orbital could also benefit a lot from being a GIF; things drifting stately looks really nice, especially when they look as good as Fed hardware does.



...anyway, I can help with writeups and so on.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 18, 2017, 09:01:02 pm
Imgur's video to gif converter only allows for an amazing 15 seconds. Imgur also doesn't allow direct uploading of mp4's or webm's.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: AdmiralRalwood on February 18, 2017, 09:28:25 pm
http://imgur.com/a/lgu8K
That is a damned beautiful opening video.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 20, 2017, 12:45:21 am
Multi is not going to happen. FSO is a single-player project now. We don't have the resources to fix it or the playerbase to make it worthwhile.

I thought karajorma had it on the backburner?
Multi has been "on the backburner" for, like, a decade (if not longer). Without a coder that knows netcode, someone would have to basically learn how it works from scratch to be able to perform even marginal improvements, and nobody has that kind of time for something that our active playerbase does not use (of course, improved netcode would increase our potential playerbase significantly... but the people who currently use FSO obviously don't use it for multiplayer).

...and the ultimate goal of this topic was to increase our playerbase, not just make things better for the current playerbase (although it is also that).  However, still no netcode guru, so moot point.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 20, 2017, 12:50:27 am
... why are the URLs split in that video?  Currently it has a hypertext link to "http://www" and then " . fsoinstaller . com"
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 20, 2017, 04:54:58 am
It's some kind of anti spam protection or something, it keeps breaking up the link after I edit it. Yet oddly enough the mixtape link doesn't suffer that fate, the links also seem unbroken in the public profile
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on February 20, 2017, 10:44:22 am
I don't think that's supposed to happen; file a support ticket to get a definitive answer.



Unrelated: "Show unread posts" has become actually useful since the gendisc blacklist. Much appreciated.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on February 20, 2017, 11:10:46 am

Unrelated: "Show unread posts" has become actually useful since the gendisc blacklist. Much appreciated.

I hate that change.  (I know; strong language for me!)  I think it killed gendisc, which may have been the intent,  since there have been very few new posts there since the switch.  I was one of the apparent few who enjoyed that board, but it's a PITA now to have to manually go to the board and look for stuff I haven't already seen. 

What really irritates me i guess is that there already was a way for people to opt out of seeing it on the "unread posts" link, but now the option to see it for those of us who liked it has been taken away.  Can't it be added back, maybe defaulted to "don't show", so those of us who like it can choose to turn it back on?

(http://i.imgur.com/7Ke464z.png)

Edit: toned down 2nd paragraph, originally written before i had enough coffee to be civilized
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on February 20, 2017, 06:42:50 pm
I must be the only person who opens every subfolder I'm reading in like 20 different tabs instead of using that link. :P
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on February 20, 2017, 07:39:49 pm
I even do that on my phone!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on February 20, 2017, 08:02:14 pm
I even do that on my phone!

I don't think I've ever even tried getting to HLP on my phone.  :)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 21, 2017, 01:37:22 am
I've been hard lighting on my phone for ten years this year.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on February 21, 2017, 02:16:48 pm
Ya'll should make sure to give @HardLightPro a follow on Twitter. I've been posting regularly. Re-tweet the stuff you find interesting and help get the word out!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 21, 2017, 03:35:13 pm
Shared on the facebook.  (at least one of them ;) )
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: niffiwan on February 21, 2017, 05:02:31 pm
I'm going to have to create a twitter account...  :nervous:
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on February 21, 2017, 07:07:37 pm
Ya'll should make sure to give @HardLightPro a follow on Twitter. I've been posting regularly. Re-tweet the stuff you find interesting and help get the word out!

Went to go follow, apparently already did (yeah I don't use Twitter much lol).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Blue Lion on February 22, 2017, 01:47:39 pm
Do we know who runs the facebook page for HLP, not the group? I'd like to get in contact with someone who runs the page (which is basically empty)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on February 22, 2017, 03:50:50 pm
Message sent, will find out for you.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: chief1983 on February 28, 2017, 09:40:32 pm
Multi is not going to happen. FSO is a single-player project now. We don't have the resources to fix it or the playerbase to make it worthwhile.

I thought karajorma had it on the backburner?
Multi has been "on the backburner" for, like, a decade (if not longer). Without a coder that knows netcode, someone would have to basically learn how it works from scratch to be able to perform even marginal improvements, and nobody has that kind of time for something that our active playerbase does not use (of course, improved netcode would increase our potential playerbase significantly... but the people who currently use FSO obviously don't use it for multiplayer).

...and the ultimate goal of this topic was to increase our playerbase, not just make things better for the current playerbase (although it is also that).  However, still no netcode guru, so moot point.

Are people just conceding that multiplayer is completely dead?  That's sad.  I now have four VPS servers running, currently still for testing, but which could be running full time release standalones of any combination of mods.  That's up to 48 multiplayer slots running simultaneously without anyone having to forward ports.  Probably the best workaround we have for the confusing NAT setup until someone figures out punch-thru.  Also jg18 plans on running a series of experiments on the netcode to see if we can find some gains, and has even had users volunteering to help him out yet.  So there is still some interest, and sometimes a small, but dedicated grass roots team is all you need to make things happen.  I have personally been trying to ensure the WebUI-based standalones remain stable for a couple years now I think, because I think that a few dedicated hosting machines are our best bet for any multiplayer viability in the near term.  I'm really happy with how stable they're running now and think that I could set up a couple retail, a MediaVPs, and maybe another mod once 3.8 is released.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on February 28, 2017, 10:45:40 pm
Quote
Are people just conceding that multiplayer is completely dead? 
Uuuuh, it has been completely dead for years now.

Quote
That's sad.
It's called looking at reality.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 01, 2017, 01:19:52 am
It's also rather premature. Multi isn't very healthy but the quickest way to actually kill it is to discourage the coders who want to work on it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jg18 on March 01, 2017, 01:38:27 am
Seemed apropos. :nervous:

EDIT: I may be kidding myself, but I do think that multi is as Miracle Max says, slightly alive. We do get people from time to time who are interested in multi, and if Internet multi were playable -- or even fun! -- maybe it'd spark something. :)



Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 01, 2017, 03:23:39 am
There was actually a lot of interest in Diaspora multiplayer when the game was release. The problem was the code wasn't up to it.

I can't imagine there won't be people who want to play FotG online either.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: chief1983 on March 01, 2017, 05:46:45 am
It was the main reason I rebooted the project :p
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on March 01, 2017, 06:43:28 am
Multi is not going to happen. FSO is a single-player project now. We don't have the resources to fix it or the playerbase to make it worthwhile.

I thought karajorma had it on the backburner?
Multi has been "on the backburner" for, like, a decade (if not longer). Without a coder that knows netcode, someone would have to basically learn how it works from scratch to be able to perform even marginal improvements, and nobody has that kind of time for something that our active playerbase does not use (of course, improved netcode would increase our potential playerbase significantly... but the people who currently use FSO obviously don't use it for multiplayer).

...and the ultimate goal of this topic was to increase our playerbase, not just make things better for the current playerbase (although it is also that).  However, still no netcode guru, so moot point.

Are people just conceding that multiplayer is completely dead?  That's sad.  I now have four VPS servers running, currently still for testing, but which could be running full time release standalones of any combination of mods.  That's up to 48 multiplayer slots running simultaneously without anyone having to forward ports.  Probably the best workaround we have for the confusing NAT setup until someone figures out punch-thru.  Also jg18 plans on running a series of experiments on the netcode to see if we can find some gains, and has even had users volunteering to help him out yet.  So there is still some interest, and sometimes a small, but dedicated grass roots team is all you need to make things happen.  I have personally been trying to ensure the WebUI-based standalones remain stable for a couple years now I think, because I think that a few dedicated hosting machines are our best bet for any multiplayer viability in the near term.  I'm really happy with how stable they're running now and think that I could set up a couple retail, a MediaVPs, and maybe another mod once 3.8 is released.

I'm sure it's not dead, it's just effectively dead until someone uses a defibrillator on it.  The heart's doing all sorts of funny motions, but the blood isn't going anywhere.  Unfortunately.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on March 01, 2017, 07:53:11 am
It's also rather premature. Multi isn't very healthy but the quickest way to actually kill it is to discourage the coders who want to work on it.
"Isn't very healthy" Oh come on. It's deader than dead, and has been for a long long time. Where are these delusions coming from?
I'd rather that coding time and effort be spend on other parts of SCP, things that are not a waste of time.
There is simply no playerbase left.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on March 01, 2017, 07:56:19 am
@^:

There was actually a lot of interest in Diaspora multiplayer when the game was release. The problem was the code wasn't up to it.

I can't imagine there won't be people who want to play FotG online either.

Please to read to learn.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 01, 2017, 09:00:36 am
Apart from anything else, a major reason to get multiplayer up and running again (even if it was dead) is that multiplayer is much better than single at getting people to stick around.

Players of the SP game tend to come, play the game and then leave. But if you can get people to play a MP game regularly they'll stick around for years.

And there's no doubt in my mind that FotG or Diaspora R2 could build up their own MP communities if the game is working well enough to do so.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: chief1983 on March 01, 2017, 09:08:10 am
Or even TBP 3.5.  Especially since this time, they could have SquadWar v2 behind them.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on March 01, 2017, 10:08:31 am
I understand I am saying unpopular things that you guys would rather not hear and thus do the old "lalala not true at all" fingers in your ears thing that you have all become so adapt at doing, whenever I point out the reality of HLP/Freespace/MP being dead or dying. But holy **** I thought we were finally past that stage.
Multiplayer is never ever going to get revived. The playerbase will never get large enough for any investment in the code to be worth it. There are far more developed and better multiplayer only games on steam, that completely fail at even keeping a bare minimum sustainable player base going. Like say, Interplanetary, invisigun heroes etc. And these are games that all benefit from being on steam and have network code that doesn't suck and have a matchmaking system of sorts.
I don't mean to rag on Diaspora, but this idea that it would have had a healthy and active multiplayer community, if it just had netcode thats not straight out of 1999 is just a fantasy.

And each time someone brings up the fabled and legendary 'SquadWar v2' up as if that would be the savior of it all. Yeah okay, I've been seeing these posts for yeeeaaars now. Sorry if I am being a bit skeptical here, but I sooner expect Starcitizen release with all of its features than FS2 MP. Because it's nothing but empty words for a empty playerbase for years now.

A waste of coding time.

But hey, feel free to proof me wrong.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: chief1983 on March 01, 2017, 10:19:45 am
Except the port of Squadwar from the old Coldfusion code to PHP on the FS2NetD server is already done (https://fs2netd.game-warden.com/squadwar/).  It could be completely usable right now, if multiplayer were considered playable.  The only feature missing is the direct integration with FSO and that is nearly complete.  I mean, that's as much as X-wing vs TIE Fighter has and all it's taking is a GOG release to get people playing it on Game Ranger again.

And you seem to be ignoring the fact that we are talking about not one, not even two, but three total conversions with entirely different bases of interest, that could be released in the near future.  Diaspora also suffered from a limited ship set in its initial launch.  So it wasn't just the netcode, but it was a good chunk of it.  TBP and FotG have much more options for campaign and mission designers, and FotG is part of a franchise with current real world interest.  Getting multiplayer on that, making a viable replacement for the old Totally Games series, and giving players another reason to pick up TBP, are all worthwhile endeavors in my opinion.  All of which would benefit from any kind of functional multiplayer system.  I don't even mind throwing money at standalones to make it easier to host games.  I mean I can almost always find a discounted one for about $1 a month on lowendbox.com.  So you're right, I don't want to hear what you're saying, because while some of it is based on truth, the conclusions being drawn from it just aren't correct.

This is also a volunteer project, so devs are free to work on whatever things interest them, to a point.  You can persuade and discourage all you want, but your tools of persuasion could use some work if your end goal is to prevent any further effort ever being spent on multiplayer.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on March 01, 2017, 10:40:00 am
Its your time and effort, you do whatever you feel like spending your time on. If you think spending your time on dead MP is a worthwhile endeavor, please, by all means. Don't let grumpy me discourage you.
I think you are all being completely delusional about this though. The reality is that MP has been dead for years now and improving netcode at this point is going to do absolutely nothing to get a healthy playerbase in. It's 2017, and the vast majority of players nowadays is not going to want to come to IRC to try and find 2-3 other people in different time zones to play a multiplayer game with. My conclusions are very correct though. I've got the past several years as evidence to back me up about everything I've been saying. We can barely get people to play hot new singleplayer releases or to upvote a imgur post. All of this work you are doing or plan on doing is going to be for a nonexisting amount of players.

It just boggles my mind that you guys are still clinging to this fantasy. Always repeating the same nonsense that MP's revival is juuuust around the corner! The revival of the glory squadwars days is at hand guys! Any moment now! I liked how this thread was grounded in the reality of the present for a while, but it seems we're back at choosing to ignore it instead again.

But hey good luck! I'll step out of this thread now.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 01, 2017, 11:13:19 am
Quarter of a million Diaspora downloads and we're supposed to believe that only 10 or 20 of them wanted to play multiplayer?

If only 1% had stuck around to play multi that would be a couple of thousand extra players.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on March 01, 2017, 12:45:32 pm
If you look at some really dead MP games on steam... 1% is really optimistic.

Look at say, Strike vector. It was an FPS-y 6 DOF space combat MP game from 2014. According to steamspy it had 204 thousand owners. That means 204 thousand people bought it using money.

As of now it gets 814 players per 2 weeks, which is under 0.5% of the total playerbase. Its peak playerbase for the last 30 days was 6(six).
And that game has pretty good stable multiplayer and it was some 12$ compared to Diaspora's low low price of FREE.
Looking at how much better MP games died I'd say that even 20 or 30 dedicated players for Diaspora would be quite an achievement.

And that's just a random game from my library, you don't have to look far to see games with a quarter million owners that are completely dead.

So I really wouldn't look to multi as this thing that will bring in "a thousand players" or anything. If it works it will probably be nice for those of us already here and might be a fun thing to do between singleplayer releases. I'm all for trying to improve the multi netcode but I think you guys need to be a bit more realistic about how much it would actually do for the FSO playerbase.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on March 01, 2017, 12:57:32 pm
If this game had smooth netcode instead of "shoot thirty feet in front of the target" I think I'd be down for co-op campaigns and puzzle missions, it'd be neat.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: chief1983 on March 01, 2017, 01:17:34 pm
It's not so much about increasing it by itself as giving people a reason to stick around longer.  And we do have a Discord server now too, which is much more game oriented I believe, especially with its voice channels, etc.  I know of numerous players who would go to great lengths to attempt to help revive the multi community, if we could make it more usable.  Strike Vector is probably a bad example, many games come and go without leaving much of an imprint on your psyche.  People still play Quake 1, Descent, etc.  People like to be able to fire up old games on new machines at retro-gaming LAN parties, etc.  Being a game with a nostalgic feeling but also being able to provide fresh content is something that FSO is in a unique position to do with our community's talent pool.  I can see not only the TC releases but also Knossos's ability to make the installation process even more error prone allowing us to reach a larger user base than we could previously.  So forgive me for being optimistic with the belief that every time we have a spotlight shone on the community, that a certain percentage of those seeing us for the first time might be interested in the multiplayer component.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on March 01, 2017, 01:28:53 pm
Quake sold some 1.1 million copies.
Descent sold some ~200k copies, really hard to find precise numbers for Descent.

Freespace 2 sold less than 30k copies.

The "nostalgia market" for Freespace is simply much smaller than it is for Quake or Descent or DooM or Half Life.

I don't want to be all doom and gloom here but I think a thousand people for singleplayer and maybe 50-60 playing multiplayer at least once a week is an optimistic expectation. A thousand players staying around for multi is just completely unrealistic.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on March 01, 2017, 01:34:55 pm
The idea that competitive multiplayer could ever kick off again is an absolute joke. I don't think Elite's arena mode manages 30 regular players and it's easily the most successful space game right now.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on March 01, 2017, 04:38:43 pm
Squad war was epic over fifteen years ago. I've been in 12 player brawls and 12 is plenty.
Also rebel intercept.

I miss rebel intercept.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on March 04, 2017, 07:22:10 pm
Its your time and effort, you do whatever you feel like spending your time on. If you think spending your time on dead MP is a worthwhile endeavor, please, by all means. Don't let grumpy me discourage you.
I think you are all being completely delusional about this though. The reality is that MP has been dead for years now and improving netcode at this point is going to do absolutely nothing to get a healthy playerbase in. It's 2017, and the vast majority of players nowadays is not going to want to come to IRC to try and find 2-3 other people in different time zones to play a multiplayer game with. My conclusions are very correct though. I've got the past several years as evidence to back me up about everything I've been saying. We can barely get people to play hot new singleplayer releases or to upvote a imgur post. All of this work you are doing or plan on doing is going to be for a nonexisting amount of players.

It just boggles my mind that you guys are still clinging to this fantasy. Always repeating the same nonsense that MP's revival is juuuust around the corner! The revival of the glory squadwars days is at hand guys! Any moment now! I liked how this thread was grounded in the reality of the present for a while, but it seems we're back at choosing to ignore it instead again.

But hey good luck! I'll step out of this thread now.

A lot of that could be rectified with a good lobby, as well as a server browser that allows you to jump right in whenever there's enough people on etc... There was one developed, I can find it I think but it was very old and it would take forever to find.  Might have it in my downloads on my hard disk though.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on March 04, 2017, 07:24:38 pm
you're just going to ignore everyone who points out that the multiplayer has totally died out for games which are literally orders of magnitude more popular than FSO, then, i guess, and keep pretending that the real cause is the SCP team not spending enough time on your favourite feature of a game that you don't even ****ing play any more
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on March 04, 2017, 07:27:25 pm
You seem to be forgetting the reason multi died out: it sucks!

Anyways, I think I found the tool:

http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=49012.msg994240#msg994240

http://www.anetchat.prv.pl/freespace  <- dead by now, of course.  Used to be handy to keep it open to join up, though (unless that was another tool).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on March 04, 2017, 07:53:19 pm
You seem to be forgetting the reason multi died out: it sucks!

Yes definitely. FSO multi died out solely due to bad netcode. Let's ignore the fact that niche games with good netcode also saw their multi die out due to declining interest and the network effect.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on March 04, 2017, 08:06:41 pm
You seem to be forgetting the reason multi died out: it sucks!

Yes definitely. FSO multi died out solely due to bad netcode. Let's ignore the fact that niche games with good netcode also saw their multi die out due to declining interest and the network effect.

How many posts did we get in the BtRL threads alone asking for assistance in multiplayer?  How about on moddb?  Now consider the average user, if they stuck around long enough to manage to download from over-crowded servers (or knew how to torrent) would simply drop the game and move on, unless they were really persistent, with a generous helping of patience.  Typical gamers aren't, that I've seen, hence the console: boop the power button, click two buttons, drop into Halo 14, and charge the enemy team with guns blazing (or camp out and snipe, whatever fits the bill).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on March 04, 2017, 08:08:56 pm
How many posts did we get in the BtRL threads alone asking for assistance in multiplayer?

do you understand how ironic it is, given the themes of this thread, that you are giving us advice on how to attract new users to FSO based on a mod release from a decade ago?
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Kobrar44 on March 04, 2017, 08:55:50 pm
Barely anyone ever would play multiplayer, that is true. But it is also true that barely anyone ever plays the campaigns that are released these days. That is because, the only thing FSO can ever be at this point, is a very niche project, for a very small but dedicated community and barely anyone ever is going to play it. Even with big releases like Diaspora or FotG, the multiplayer would maybe be played for a couple weeks before becoming mostly dead again. That is the reality. If you think that's not worth being passionate about, what are you even doing here. Because if multiplayer becomes viable, and once a year someone shows up on discord saying hey lets play freespace today, I would be all for that. I plan on playing BtA before death, too.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on March 04, 2017, 09:38:55 pm
How many posts did we get in the BtRL threads alone asking for assistance in multiplayer?

do you understand how ironic it is, given the themes of this thread, that you are giving us advice on how to attract new users to FSO based on a mod release from a decade ago?

*sigh* because nothing has changed since then.  We still have awesome mods, TCs, upgraded FS2 assets, the whole shebang, always being updated, etc, every once in a while we get a burst of new users from a really popular mod, and then it fizzles out.  Multi gives people something to do with the FSO engine while they're waiting for the next release of Diaspora, for example.  Otherwise, they play the release a lot, and then eventually move on.  The other answer to the problem would be a bunch of mid-to-high quality campaigns / mods for a popular release, but that only lasts as long as the replay value of the user-made campaigns.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 04, 2017, 09:55:33 pm
In the end this is pointless.

Whether or not work on multiplayer results in an active multiplayer community the fact remains that there are some of us who want to actually PLAY the game in multiplayer mode. And at the moment we can't. So even if work on multiplayer results in only one or two games a week, at least those people are happy. If the coders involved are happy with that being the conclusion of any work they do on multiplayer (and I know I am) then it really doesn't matter whether this will result in a massive multiplayer community since that is a bonus objective anyway!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Colonol Dekker on March 05, 2017, 04:44:54 am
The Internet certainly wasn't standard issue amongst my social circle when fs2 multi player was ongoing,  that's another factor.  Think back 20 years or so. 

But now,  if fs2 was a working thing,  I'd certainly be more inclined to try a quick fs2 brawl than wait ten minutes for ed arena to work.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: LaineyBugsDaddy on March 07, 2017, 11:37:31 am
I would LOVE to do FSO multi. I haven't tried because I don't know anyone to do a LAN party with and I know that internet multi is garbage right now. Just because some people here don't say much about multi doesn't mean there's no desire. I just don't want to sound like I'm whining about it, especially since I am a novice coder at best and wouldn't have the foggiest idea of how to optimize or replace current net code. I keep quiet because there's nothing I can do about it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on March 07, 2017, 10:49:01 pm
LAN is garbage too. Played the entire FS2 campaign on 5 player LAN, nonhosts were lucky to get two kills a mission.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 07, 2017, 11:38:31 pm
Yep. There isn't really any difference between the code used for LAN and online games. LAN games obviously have a lower ping but the problem isn't just that.

But whenever I try to read the netcode (especially the rate stuff) my brain dribbles out of my ears.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on March 08, 2017, 09:52:58 am
In the end this is pointless.

Whether or not work on multiplayer results in an active multiplayer community the fact remains that there are some of us who want to actually PLAY the game in multiplayer mode. And at the moment we can't. So even if work on multiplayer results in only one or two games a week, at least those people are happy. If the coders involved are happy with that being the conclusion of any work they do on multiplayer (and I know I am) then it really doesn't matter whether this will result in a massive multiplayer community since that is a bonus objective anyway!

I don't think anyone here would deny that there are people who enjoy multi and it would be good to get it working for their sake alone. But this is a thread asking "how do we get FSO to thrive again" and there are people pushing "fixing multi" as the answer to that almost to the point of it being concern trolling. FSO thrived just fine around 2010 or so on the strength of its single-player content alone, and that's what we want to get back to.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 08, 2017, 08:02:12 pm
Let's just look at the numbers.

FS2 had a fairly loyal, long-running multiplayer community after release. FS2 sold only 30,000 copies in the first 6 months.
Diaspora and BtRL both managed to get around quarter of a million confirmed downloads each in the same sort of timespan (we have absolutely no idea how many people downloaded the torrents).

Now is the multiplayer community you could get as a result of that going to be the saviour of HLP? Probably not. Unless we somehow manage to satisfy an itch that can't be scratch by other space games, we're not going to become massively famous off the back of multiplayer. But even building a community equal to the original retail FS2 one is worthy. And I find it very hard to believe that is not an achievable goal if the netcode was fixed.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: chief1983 on March 08, 2017, 08:11:57 pm
I think considering how long XvT lived, and the fact that Star Wars has almost always had new media in one form or another keeping people interest in the universe, FotG could be distinct from TBP, WCS, and Diaspora in that regard.  It was why I revived FotG in the first place, the XvT community was dying as the game got old.  It wasn't until I was too far in to realize that the game's multiplayer engine itself wasn't up to what I had hoped it could do.  But I'd love to do whatever I could to help make that change.  No offense to any other projects but I really think FotG has the biggest change at bringing constant multiplayer interest to the platform, just because of the constant interest in the IP it is based on.  Although that's also the most likely reason for it to get a C&D, so...we'll see what happens there.

And TBP and Diaspora are both very good games.  If multiplayer had been better, I wouldn't be surprised if people would still be playing them both now.  Yes, many games die, but I think that's more on the publishers than their community.  If they stop releasing new content, or encouraging the community and interacting with it, it will often die, with exceptions for hugely popular and competitive games.  But mods in this community can be added on to by anyone.  Anyone can create their own content, including multiplayer missions, etc.  Many games that have died have no such mechanism for involvement like that.  The sandbox can often keep people coming back.

We could all be wrong though, in that people just don't want a multiplayer experience like we could ever offer.  People seem to be getting used to just dropping into random battles at the click of a button.  Or joining ongoing games that never really end.  Lobbying up to start a game and sitting there waiting to start may be beyond people's threshold for the most part these days.  But some aspects of that are still things that could be helped technologically.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 08, 2017, 09:11:14 pm
I think considering how long XvT lived, and the fact that Star Wars has almost always had new media in one form or another keeping people interest in the universe, FotG could be distinct from TBP, WCS, and Diaspora in that regard.  It was why I revived FotG in the first place, the XvT community was dying as the game got old.  It wasn't until I was too far in to realize that the game's multiplayer engine itself wasn't up to what I had hoped it could do.  But I'd love to do whatever I could to help make that change.  No offense to any other projects but I really think FotG has the biggest change at bringing constant multiplayer interest to the platform, just because of the constant interest in the IP it is based on.

I'm not going to disagree with you on that score. Interest in Diaspora is nowhere near as high today as it was ten years ago simply because BSG is no longer on TV.

That said, Knossos means that interest in any IP will have much more bleed over to other projects than ever before. When Diaspora launched, the only way we could get people to play the other FS2_Open games is if they came back to the forums after playing and looked for them. Now we'll have them sitting there every time you play the game, waiting for you to try them out.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: PIe on March 09, 2017, 12:18:29 am
I discovered FreeSpace relatively recently, and I have a few observations.  I found this place because of Diaspora, I think from a Kotaku article on BSG games.  I discovered Wing Commander Saga and the Babylon Project from http://diaspora.hard-light.net/links.html.  I say this because links to other FS2 based projects are quite valuable, just not if half of them are dead.  This leads to:
1. The projects tab on the home page really needs to be cleaned up.  There are a ton of dead projects there.
2. Since much, if not most, of info on getting started is in the forums, it's really hard to find.  Plus, even when you do find it, it's more often then not completely outdated.  For instance, to download Diaspora, you have to wade through a long post by Karajorma, when I just want to download the thing and play it.  Even once you get to the download links, if you don't scroll further, you won't discover that there are some necessary patches.  No offense to Karajorma, but for me, and I think many others just joining, it would be much better to have links directly on diaspora.hard-light.net.  Also, moving the essential threads to the wiki would help a lot.
3. The wxLauncher or equivalent needs to be much more prominent.
As far as the OP goes, I have some interest in joining an Aide team.  Also, replacing the current Captcha with Google's reCaptcha would be nice.
Overall, my main beef is that a lot of HLP seems deserted and in serious need to updating.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on March 09, 2017, 01:04:44 am
It's pretty nice to hear from our target audience. :yes:

1) Yeah. the Diaspora website is in dire need of an update. In fact most of the project websites could use an update. The problem is that very few of us actually have the skills to do anything serious in the way of an update (and those that do are busy). That said, cleaning up links isn't a particularly big problem so I'll look into that now.

2) & 3) Both of those two problems should hopefully go away once we switch over to Knossos (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93144.0). For those who haven't been paying attention to that thread, Knossos is a Steam / GoG Galaxy style combined launcher and installed for FS2_Open games. The idea is that users will be provided with an interface that looks like this

(http://i282.photobucket.com/albums/kk264/mjnmixael/Private/Knossos%20Home%20Update_zpsucyrufsh.jpg~original)
(http://i282.photobucket.com/albums/kk264/mjnmixael/Private/Knossos%20Nebula_zpsytg1mlys.jpg~original)
(http://i282.photobucket.com/albums/kk264/mjnmixael/Private/Knossos%20Details%20Update_zps5br2zb4z.jpg~original)

Knossos should provide access to all our FS2_Open mods and games in one place. So instead of that release thread all new players need to do is be told to download Knossos and click on Diaspora to install it. Since Knossos will be able to detect that upgrades are available there is no need to manually find and download patches.

Diaspora is actually already available via the Knossos beta version but I don't think that's something that we should be pointing first time users at yet. In the meanwhile, I'll have a look at the release thread and see if I can clean it up a little. 
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: PIe on March 09, 2017, 09:01:51 am
That looks quite nice, functional as well as good-looking.  I'll look at the thread.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on March 10, 2017, 02:07:00 pm
I'd probably play multi but I'm garbage at the actual dogfighting playing of FS2 which is why I usually play on medium and not insane but I'd still be down to play a round or two of multi. Agree that singleplayer's more important though.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Snail on March 10, 2017, 09:11:50 pm
Umm... Hi. It's Snail. I'm hoping a few people remember me. It's been a while. About once every year I decide to have a look at that one website I used to visit literally every day and... Man, it's always weird. My life has changed so damn much since I stopped coming, but this place is always still here (with the exact same front page and forum interface). It seems like nothing at all has changed, everything's just gotten slower. Which I guess is the issue being addressed in this thread. The new home page looks great and I really hope the social media stuff gains some traction. I'll add that I think Reddit's a good place to start if we want to draw new people in. And that standalone things like Wings of Dawn or TCs based on existing IPs like Fate of the Galaxy seem like a great way to gain some mass appeal for exposure.

Honestly, I don't really have much input other than that, and I don't want to derail the thread with my nostalgia or anything, so I'll just add some general positivity and good vibes: I'm really ****ing glad you guys are still here. This game and these forums were such a huge part of my life and some of my best memories are of me in my bedroom or at my grandma's house playing Inferno and Blue Planet and of course ****posting on these forums (or embarrassing myself on IRC). It seems like a different world to me now, but as long as HLP is around it's never really gone. I hope that's always the case. While I'm saddened to see that things have slowed down significantly compared to the scene 4-6 years ago, I'm really glad that you guys are actively working on it. I've always been in total awe of how uniquely intelligent and hardworking the community here has been, and based on that alone I'm confident there's a way to breathe some life back into this place. I'm not sure if I'm in a position to contribute to the great FreeSpace resurgence of 2017 myself, but I'll just say I wish you all the best. Love you guys. :D
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: mjn.mixael on March 10, 2017, 11:00:57 pm
Holy **** it's Snail.

Ok, now I can read your post.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Spoon on March 11, 2017, 06:32:52 am
Woah, hi Snail
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Torchwood on March 11, 2017, 06:52:43 am
Welcome back Snail, glad I'm not to only one who decided to come back.

I'll be sure to do my part for the Freespace 2 resurgence. Expect some new content soon.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on March 11, 2017, 09:31:41 am
Love you guys. :D

Hi cutie. ;)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on March 11, 2017, 10:38:27 am
Umm... Hi. It's Snail. I'm hoping a few people remember me. It's been a while. About once every year I decide to have a look at that one website I used to visit literally every day and... Man, it's always weird. My life has changed so damn much since I stopped coming, but this place is always still here (with the exact same front page and forum interface). It seems like nothing at all has changed, everything's just gotten slower. Which I guess is the issue being addressed in this thread. The new home page looks great and I really hope the social media stuff gains some traction. I'll add that I think Reddit's a good place to start if we want to draw new people in. And that standalone things like Wings of Dawn or TCs based on existing IPs like Fate of the Galaxy seem like a great way to gain some mass appeal for exposure.

Honestly, I don't really have much input other than that, and I don't want to derail the thread with my nostalgia or anything, so I'll just add some general positivity and good vibes: I'm really ****ing glad you guys are still here. This game and these forums were such a huge part of my life and some of my best memories are of me in my bedroom or at my grandma's house playing Inferno and Blue Planet and of course ****posting on these forums (or embarrassing myself on IRC). It seems like a different world to me now, but as long as HLP is around it's never really gone. I hope that's always the case. While I'm saddened to see that things have slowed down significantly compared to the scene 4-6 years ago, I'm really glad that you guys are actively working on it. I've always been in total awe of how uniquely intelligent and hardworking the community here has been, and based on that alone I'm confident there's a way to breathe some life back into this place. I'm not sure if I'm in a position to contribute to the great FreeSpace resurgence of 2017 myself, but I'll just say I wish you all the best. Love you guys. :D

Holy **** you're alive
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on March 12, 2017, 07:01:45 am
Snail!  Hi!  I've always wondered if / when you'd come back.  :)  Great to see you!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Snail on March 13, 2017, 09:03:29 pm
Yes, I am alive. It's good to see all of you too. :P
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Gregster2k on March 22, 2017, 09:02:23 pm
Knossos is a Steam / GoG Galaxy style combined launcher... [snip]

I don't post on the forums much, but I come here for the Highlights, to see what has been released. THIS IS AWESOME. DO IT.  I urge that HLP runs with this, feature a "web version" of this on the HLP front page, similar to that seen at https://www.technicpack.net/modpacks if you need a case example, integrate Knossos and your HLP Forum Account. But don't require people make accounts to download. I try to get my friends to get something and they're often like "oh god another launcher **** this" or "I don't want to make an account **** this".

In short, HLP: Mods, Assets, Music, etc, all tabbed, with nice images, a working search, hash tags to categorize by type (Serious, Humor, Anime, etc), all with download buttons, description of license type / credit requirements, etc. Then have a Community section with links to the Forums, Discord, etc etc. Put the Content up front, community second.

I should caution that if you all succeed in getting HLP more "visible," HLP will have an increased chance of getting hit by a Lawsuit/C&DGreen#Home for some of its hosted mods' use of copyrighted or trademarked material; e.g. BP's use of copyrighted commercial music (Origa comes to mind) and the Starfox mods/content assets. Nintendo in particular is extremely aggressive about nuking fangames (Metroid AM2R comes to mind). Hell, even Doom the Roguelike was smashed down by Bethesda recently; they had to rename themselves to "DRL".

My biggest problem with getting new people (OR MYSELF) to play FreeSpace is the annoyance of setting it up. Gamers these days are lazy, I myself am spoiled rotten by how easy it is to set up more modern games. Especially in multiplayer (which, after fixing netcode, could really benefit from the ability for dedicated servers to change maps on the fly, run with AI bots as "players" when none are available, and other modern features).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mika on April 14, 2017, 01:58:14 pm
Alright, so this is the thread were the plans for the new forums were released. Next time I'd really consider putting it to GenDisc, but then again I don't have the thread reading statistics.

Along the 22 page discussion came up the question why isn't the game played?

Some people have already given feedback on how outdated installation instructions are. With a launcher, this point would become considerably easier. Eagerly waiting for that.

And now about why I haven't played the game for 10 years as of now: I played the main campaign through thrice with varying difficulty levels. Then I played Blaise Russell's Derelict and a couple of other vanilla game add-in campaigns (Boomerang, something starting with A too). All good back then. Unfortunately what happened next was a long hiatus of campaigns that were just around the corner (Inferno, Diaspora, Blackwater Operations), but did not get released, or have been recently released. A number of total conversions did happen, but I'm not particularly interested playing those (never watched Babylon) without knowing the source material, or that I feel I played the originals already (Star Wars X-Wings and TIEs). Conversion to Wing Commander could be interesting, but I also played the hell out of WCII at the time it was released.

I did learn FREDding back then, and created several missions. I actually still have the campaign structure A4 yellowing on my desk. But what happened was Microsoft. My Windows XP license somehow reset itself necessitating a complete re-install of the operating system. And I thought I had made back ups of the FRED missions, but unfortunately I was mistaken. It was all lost with that formatting. With no interesting campaigns in sight and getting depressed by losing a couple of good missions, I shifted towards other games. But I never picked up the releases as my go to HLP address refers to the forums as it was done back then, and not to the main page.

But tell you what: if you get that launcher running, I might actually pick up the game again. And if I get inspired, actually finish the plot for my own campaign and start FREDding when my business allows it. Remaking those missions could actually be interesting, if I recall playtesters (Mongoose and someone else?) were having fun with them.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on April 14, 2017, 11:04:15 pm
Lol you skipped the entire golden age of FS2 campaigns. Well played.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on April 15, 2017, 12:01:46 am
I mean, the installer really isn't that bad if you're willing to put some time in. Don't let it stop you from enjoying the best user-made content for FSO.
If you previously went through installing FSO by hand then the installer will only make things easier for you. It's only too complex to attract people not familiar with freespace who might give up or not know where to start.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on April 15, 2017, 01:54:56 am
But tell you what: if you get that launcher running, I might actually pick up the game again. And if I get inspired, actually finish the plot for my own campaign and start FREDding when my business allows it. Remaking those missions could actually be interesting, if I recall playtesters (Mongoose and someone else?) were having fun with them.

The launcher is running. Ball's in your court.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mika on April 15, 2017, 06:48:59 am
I have never actually installed FSO. It's the vanilla game sitting on my hard disk.

So let's see:
From FS2 Open Coding thread, 3.8.0-RC1 release

Quote
All platforms:  wxLauncher (ongoing project for a unified launcher)

Now what's that launcher? I thought I saw a launcher with a different name in this thread?

What's the difference between x64 and x86 builds? I'm really not interested in MS-DOSesque battles of getting something or keeping something running, had enough of those that I could probably quote the entries in CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT from the heart up to this day. The way it's written there it looks as if I should go with x86 build with x64 Windows.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on April 15, 2017, 01:39:32 pm
Just run the FSO installer. fsoinstaller.com
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mika on April 15, 2017, 02:26:49 pm
FSOpen installer works.

I can't believe that my Freespace CDs still work, but the vanilla game won't actually run on my computer any more. 16Gb of RAM is apparently too much.

Should the main menu screen be changed? I didn't expect you guys would have kept the original, but it does state FSOpen version something in the left bottom corner. I suppose the original start up video also is as it is?

There's an issue with the wxLauncher with respect to screen size. It does not scale properly for 4K resolution (I use 4K desktop resolution, but typically game at 1080p). Does not stop me from playing, but makes it difficult to see what graphic options actually do. Pictures available upon request.

Since the installation was way larger than I expected (like 21 Gb) and it's a street dance jam today I'm participating, I'll check the campaign tomorrow.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: General Battuta on April 15, 2017, 04:46:12 pm
Play with MediaVPs enabled for enhanced graphics, play the Blue Planet mod and select 'FreeSpace Blue' to play with lightly remastered missions/rebalanced weapons and functioning TAG.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: SypheDMar on April 16, 2017, 01:28:30 am
And Gen Disc. (or something like it) should, and almost certainly is, staying. We're trying to grow HLP's userbase, not drive people away.
You say that like Gen Disc. doesn't actively drive people away (and if you were planning on saying it does not, there are people who only use IRC and stay off the forums specifically because Gen Disc. is a ****hole who would disagree with you).
I got on IRC one day just to complain about  Gen Disc after lurking, so yeah, this is real.

e: Now that I've read through the entire thread since that post, here's a few things of note:


I think I'm a target audience who hasn't played FSO in a while. The initial thing that got me interested in FreeSpace was that it was listed as an open source game on Wikipedia before they cleaned up the page (a bit). This was of course before GoG was a thing and FreeSpace was essentially abandonware. And also when Ubuntu was cool and almost becoming a thing.

So first, I think another avenue to market FreeSpace is actually the open source gaming community. FSO is not an open source game engine, but FreeSpace 2 with MediaVPs looks and plays better than most open source games, and there are Linux gamers who just want to run a "AAA"game on their computers. That's not to mention the promotion with actual free TCs.

I'm currently in the process of using the 2016 FSO installer and updating everything, including downloading a few mods that I've never played/used before. Thinking about it, I might have to replay the retail campaign just to feel comfortable with everything. That's not a good feeling for me since I updated the files to play the mods, not retail.

As for why I've not been playing FreeSpace recently (nearly a year but before I replayed it was almost another year too): A lot of my issues come from my favorite mods that I've played are ones that are still WIP -  BP being the standout. I want to play FS more, but not all campaigns are created equal, and my taste is sometimes selective. There's a not a draw for me to open up FSO when other games are more complete and frankly more accessible.

I hope I gave some insight as to why I'm not here frequently.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on April 16, 2017, 04:50:05 am
BtA is more polished and much more modern than BP in terms of both mission design and all the little extras like the system map. Whether it's "better" is up to you to decide but it's definitely worth a playthrough for anyone who cares about FSO. JAD 2.22 was released 2 months ago and it was... more JAD. It's got cool VN segments and big bossfights so if you enjoyed previous JADs you'll probably enjoy this one too.

If you're getting back into FSO after a year you should definitely play those 2.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: karajorma on April 16, 2017, 06:09:01 am
We need to axe the **** of of GD. Barring that, it needs to be an opt-in. Sure keep the three good threads, but burn everything else. Also, admins and mods cannot have privileges that regular members don't have. If an admin is an ass or ignorant, ban said admin from GD as well. I'm still not touching GD with a 10-foot pole.

All the political stuff is now in it's own separate forum. So Gen Dis should be perfectly safe to visit now.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: SypheDMar on April 16, 2017, 07:11:08 pm
BtA is more polished and much more modern than BP in terms of both mission design and all the little extras like the system map. Whether it's "better" is up to you to decide but it's definitely worth a playthrough for anyone who cares about FSO.
That's actually one of the campaigns I've downloaded! I'm very excited for it.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on April 29, 2017, 11:38:54 am
First off; thank you for allowing Gen Disc to appear again in my unread topics!!

Second, has any more thought been given to a "general tech discussion" forum, like suggested by JR2?  http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93249.0

I agree that it would be a way to possibly be seen by those who actively avoid Gen Disc.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Axem on April 29, 2017, 11:54:20 am
Well political discussions have been moved out of Gen Disc, so if that's why people were avoiding Gen Disc, then they no longer have any reason to. I don't think its a good idea to divide up too finely off topic discussions areas. If tech discussion threads began to overwhelm Gen Disc then perhaps it might be an idea, but at the present time I think they could fit in with General Discussion. In fact, it might be a good way to draw people back.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Mongoose on April 29, 2017, 11:56:22 am
Given that all of the political commentary has been moved out of GenDisc to its own folder, there's not really any reason for anyone to actively avoid it anymore.  Plus I don't think we get enough specifically tech-related topics to warrant their own exclusive folder.  Hell, as it stands, the Programming folder could be folded back into GenDisc without anyone noticing the difference.

(Sniper no sniping!)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on April 29, 2017, 12:01:27 pm
Well political discussions have been moved out of Gen Disc, so if that's why people were avoiding Gen Disc, then they no longer have any reason to. I don't think its a good idea to divide up too finely off topic discussions areas. If tech discussion threads began to overwhelm Gen Disc then perhaps it might be an idea, but at the present time I think they could fit in with General Discussion. In fact, it might be a good way to draw people back.
Given that all of the political commentary has been moved out of GenDisc to its own folder, there's not really any reason for anyone to actively avoid it anymore.  Plus I don't think we get enough specifically tech-related topics to warrant their own exclusive folder.  Hell, as it stands, the Programming folder could be folded back into GenDisc without anyone noticing the difference.

(Sniper no sniping!)

I'm cool with that; thanks for considering and responding.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Wet Orange Ostrich Toilet on May 02, 2017, 01:10:20 am
While I am not familiar with the social media crowd of today, I am trying to pull attention on a site I am far more familiar with...


...that site being /v/....
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Goober5000 on May 02, 2017, 11:00:25 pm
:v: on /v/.  I like it. :)
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Wet Orange Ostrich Toilet on May 05, 2017, 04:33:53 am
Alright. I did a bit of research, not sure if it will be useful or not.
Here's what I found out about the interest in space games

-People are indeed regaining interest for space games

-People are NOT interested in arcade based shooters.

-The most popular tags within space games are 'MMO' 'Open-World' 'Strategy' and 'Sandbox'

So I concluded that, under the assumption that such a thing is possible, a viable strategy would be to scramble every skilled coder and modder and have them create some sort of 'Open World RPG' version of either original Freespace or one of the full conversions. Have someone gather attention to it on Steam Greenlight and the hype should be coming by itself.

Please keep in mind, I have no idea about the extent to which the source code can be modified, nor do I know if something like that is possible. It's just a small idea really.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on May 05, 2017, 04:39:17 am
The engine could be capable of doing Open-world right now and it still wouldn't make sense to chase that goal. An open world only makes sense if its populated enough to be interesting, and nothing short of a medium-large game studio has the resources to produce that much content.

No matter what you do to the engine Freespace won't become a better open-world space sim than Elite: Dangerous. There's just no reason to compete for that market. Both the engine and the people making content for Freespace are much better suited for finely crafted mission-based SP campaigns than open worlds and FSO might still be the best mission-based space shooter.

You can make non-linear campaigns with JAD's campaign map and BtA's system viewer, essentially letting the player jump anywhere in the system to take on missions but that's not really 'open world', that's just some very elaborate masking of a 'choose mission' menu. You wouldn't really call MW4: Mercenaries an open-world game just because you can go to multiple systems and take on missions, it's still a mission-based game that just lets you play missions in any order you like.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on May 05, 2017, 07:23:58 am

-People are NOT interested in arcade based shooters.

-The most popular tags within space games are 'MMO' 'Open-World' 'Strategy' and 'Sandbox'



I'm in trouble; i avoid 3 of those 4 tags!  I don't do well when games are too open - i need more structure.  Even when there is a mission path, I get too bogged down in side quests and never get to "the good parts."  Mass Effect, Fallout 3, GTA: San Andreas are a few that I looked forward to and started multiple times but never go far into them.  For sim aspects, I like a little complexity, but I don't want running my ship to get in the way of having fun blowing things up.

I keep looking at Elite: Dangerous whenever it's on sale, but then I remind myself that I won't actually play it much, and I go back to FreeSpace or a mod or some other mission-based, arcade-oriented action game (or C&C3: Kane's Wrath skirmishes).
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: Phantom Hoover on May 05, 2017, 08:04:19 am
get house of the dying sun! play it! it's fantastic and structured!
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: xenocartographer on May 05, 2017, 08:31:24 am
Quote
You can make non-linear campaigns with JAD's campaign map and BtA's system viewer, essentially letting the player jump anywhere in the system to take on missions but that's not really 'open world', that's just some very elaborate masking of a 'choose mission' menu. You wouldn't really call MW4: Mercenaries an open-world game just because you can go to multiple systems and take on missions, it's still a mission-based game that just lets you play missions in any order you like.

I don't quite agree. I mean, granted, the ability to play missions in different orders doesn't mean open-world (off the top of my head, Advance Wars does that and no one whose brain wasn't a demented weasel would call that open-world), but if the player's actions at one area can affect what happens at other areas, then you're on to something - especially if you can revisit the same area repeatedly.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: FrikgFeek on May 05, 2017, 08:39:28 am
The amount of branching and campaign-persistent variables needed to do that would be... excessive. Even if the engine could handle it to really take advantage of that kind of continuity you'd need to write so many :words: and actually design all those branching paths that are changed by your previous actions. It's simply just too much work.

Look at the MW4:Mercs example, that game didn't really change missions much no matter what order you played them in. You'd have new mechs available and more money to buy those mechs but all the missions stayed pretty much the same.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: The E on May 05, 2017, 08:42:11 am
This task is made much easier with the upcoming custom SEXP feature. That can be used to easily expand variable storage as much as necessary. But yeah, the amount of content that would need to be generated is enormous.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: jr2 on May 05, 2017, 09:13:26 pm
Unless there was a way to make it semi-trivial for users to create their own content in a meaningful way  (yeah, probably an impossibly monumental task, I was just throwing it out there because it would be nice and I can dream)

Something like a co-op dynamic FS universe that has episodes that take place over certain time periods repetitively, but are changed by user / group action enough to make it different every time, and also have custom MOD support for user-made seasons and scenarios... Yeah, I'll go back to my corner now  *retreats from coders horrified at the mountain of work such a project would require*
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: JSRNerdo on May 05, 2017, 10:50:37 pm
Alright. I did a bit of research, not sure if it will be useful or not.
Here's what I found out about the interest in space games

-People are indeed regaining interest for space games

-People are NOT interested in arcade based shooters.

-The most popular tags within space games are 'MMO' 'Open-World' 'Strategy' and 'Sandbox'

So I concluded that, under the assumption that such a thing is possible, a viable strategy would be to scramble every skilled coder and modder and have them create some sort of 'Open World RPG' version of either original Freespace or one of the full conversions. Have someone gather attention to it on Steam Greenlight and the hype should be coming by itself.

Please keep in mind, I have no idea about the extent to which the source code can be modified, nor do I know if something like that is possible. It's just a small idea really.

I had an experiment like that, Grand Theft Freespace, where you had a persistent world with missions you could do in any order and you had a shop to buy upgrades/weapons/ships/etc. Never quite got around to doing it, but it's definitely doable with a large dose of variables and other hacks.
Title: Re: Let's talk, HLP!
Post by: deathspeed on May 06, 2017, 12:18:22 am
get house of the dying sun! play it! it's fantastic and structured!

Yep, i enjoy that game!  I need to pick up playing it again.  The first time I tried it I was like "meh", but a couple of months later i tried again and the "This is awesome!"  I don't recall why I stopped playing after that, but I hadn't gotten very far into it.