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barocca
06-25-2004, 17:51
When a mod has generated an immense amount of interest and has a release candidate ready (or almost ready) for download it can be granted it's own forum.

Two Crowns was granted a forum without having a release candidate for testing purposes. Perhaps it was a slight special privilege granted because it is a game mod being made by board moderators - but we needed to test the concept without putting any of you hard core modders noses out of joint if we decided to scrap the concept.

Be aware that not all mods may be given their own forums,
we really dont want 2 dozen subforums, one for each mod
- that would get very messy and hard to manage.

Being seperated from the Engineees Guild may not be the best thing for all mods,
Those mods that are seperated may actually lose potential contributors because they are a little harder to find.

In the interest of informing patrons that some mods have been moved to their own Dungeon SubForum the staff here will endeavour to keep this list up to date.

For the time being i will leave this thread open so that you may post comments about this policy and wether or not you think giving game mods seperate forums is a wise thing to do.

when i feel that the discussion has served it's purpose i will prune this topic (ie delete some posts) and leave it in place as an information thread - meaning it will be closed.

== ==
Two Crowns
Two Crowns forum (http://www.totalwar.org/cgi-bin/forum/ikonboard.cgi?act=SF;f=37)

Hellenic Total War
HTW forum (http://www.totalwar.org/cgi-bin/forum/ikonboard.cgi?act=SF;f=38)

B.

Myrddraal
06-26-2004, 13:05
This thread didn't exist when I posted this in the Two Crowns forum. I guess its more relevant here.


Quote[/b] ]I know that my mod will prob. never get a subforum, not because the mod is badly made (or at least I don't think it is http://www.totalwar.org/forum/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif )simply because not enough people are interested. It seems to me that even though it is not badly made, my mod will be excluded from this 'subforum club' simply because it is only availiable to those who have read a series of books. It seems there will be 'good' mods with subforums, which people take notice of, and 'bad' mods (which might be just as well made), which don't. At the end of the day though, these are not strong feelings in me. So please don't take offence. Remember, jealousy is flattery if you look at it from a certain angle. http://www.totalwar.org/forum/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif

I feel that the eventually there might be a situation where people will come to the forum, check out the subforums, and maybe once in a while they will go the Engineers Guild to check out the 'lesser' mods, even though they may be just as good.

The only way to make a fair system is to give every mod a subforum, which as you say is impossible.

This is how the idea is flawed and prejudiced against more specific mods (like mine).

Duke John
06-26-2004, 16:03
Disclaimer: while I am writing this I think I must warn you beforehand that this post might get a bit messy http://www.totalwar.org/forum/non-cgi/emoticons/gc-grin.gif


Quote[/b] ]This is how the idea is flawed and prejudiced against more specific mods (like mine).

I am starting to regret that I asked the Admins for a subforum, so I really think the modders should discuss this to make sure that we are heading the right way. It's a new feature and we do need to make the right policy to keep everybody happy.

If you look at other gaming sites you see subforums for single mods. So this is nothing new. But should we give every mod a subforum?

Dead forums
The biggest fear I have with this is that sometimes a mod is abandoned or when finished the interest fades as everybody can just play the mod. In that case we will have dead forums. Does this make this make mods more accessible for the normal patrons? If no then the concept has failed since that was my original intention of subforums in the Dungeon.
And then what happens? Should we merge all the threads and put it back into the Engineers Guild? That would create quite a mess.

Active development threads
With this I mean that some threads have loads of posts because the mod is being developed. But that doesn't mean that it should deseverve its own subforum. What if the mod is finished? Will there still be a continious flow of posts?

Subforums are not a prestige thing
I have the feeling that some people think that having a subforum is a wanna-have. When I asked TosaInu for a subforum I didn't do this because I wanted to be special. I did this because I have a vision in which the Two Crowns mod has a forum where there are battlereports, strategies. historical articles, screenshot threads, stories, etc. I have done similar small things for M:TW and people liked it alot, so I know once I start it it will generate alot of interest. And I simply love the 15th century. The mod and the forum are a way to express that fascination. And that has nothing to do with being special. If you doubt my intentions, then have a little patience, I can promise you that the Two Crowns forum will become special.

Is the mod purely for Single Player?
SP mod threads tend to have little activity once the mod is finished. If this is not the case then 90% of the time there is a patron who doesn't know how to install or an update for the mod is being developed.
Mods who also aim for MP will have more activity since people come together to make appointments talk about battles etc.
However this is not always the case since some mods are so good that patrons are posting about strategy and tactics specifically for that mod. This brings me to:

A forum for playing mods
We have forums for mod development, modding issues and modding guides. But one of the biggest flaws of the Dungeon (and which I raised months ago...) is that normal Patrons don't have a place to discuss the non-modding side of mods: actually playing them.
What if we create a forum specifically for playing mods? If patrons come here it will also generate interests for other mods as they read other posts.

Conclusion
The botttomline in my eyes is:

Mod development generates alot of posts, but that is no reason to get a subforum. We should also look at the activity after the mod is finished. Subforums are not meant to provide modders a prominent place to develop their mod. Subforums should provide patrons a place to discuss their favourite mod.

I anxiously await your opinions,
Duke John

barocca
06-26-2004, 16:34
Quote[/b] (Myrddraal @ June 26 2004,07:05)]The only way to make a fair system is to give every mod a subforum, which as you say is impossible.  

This is how the idea is flawed and prejudiced against more specific mods (like mine).
you might notice the mod i have spent over a year developing does not have it's own forum, (Shogun Mod)

thats because i dont think it needs one

i am at the point where given 2 weeks with nothing else to do i could have it finished,
but i dont have (and wont ever have) 2 weeks continuous time up my sleeve, so it will take somewhat longer

once i have the mod finished it will require only a single thread on strategy and tactics and perhaps one on the multiplayer aspect, which will most likely wind up in jousting forum.

the important thing to remember is how much of a pain it would be for a patron to keep going up and down the forum tree to read about all the mods and check all the forums for new posts,

i know one site where all the downloads are in seperate threads and indeed subforums, not indexed in html like ours,
and to browse them all is a bit of a struggle (hitting the back button, making a new selection, waiting for the thread/forum to load etc etc etc)

just so you know i dont go into HTW or 2 Crowns very often, perhaps once or twice a week - i dont have the time to check them every day
SO
before you say i wanna forum, ASK yourself the big questions,
1. does my mod NEED it's own forum?

2. will more or less people see it and take notice?
(the answer is less)

3. are casual browsers more likely to see my mod if i leave it in the Engineers Guild?
(the answer is yes)

4. Can i build the entire mod myself, or would some help be nice?
- we have had people visit the forum, see us struggling with an aspect that they already solved, so they join, post the solution and are rarely seen again, such people are unlikely to go through the hassle of checking a dozen sub forums.

B.

Duke John
06-26-2004, 17:31
Another disclaimer: I am just putting my thoughts online. I hope that others will do the same.[/i]

I agree with point 4 (well also with the other ones). I don't watch the H:TW thread as closely as before. Since H:TW now has its own forum they have become independent. I don't know what it's worth but if you want to have me and others coming by occasionally, then the best place is in the Engineers Guild.
ShadesWolf and I are experienced modders so we don't really need help on the modding side. H:TW has got a whole team. If someone makes a mod mostly on his own then a subforum might be a bad move.


About the policy
What if we make a list of questions to make sure that the modder knows what the consequences are and that he is fully confident that the subforum will be active for months.
If the forum dies then the topics will be merged. You will of course get some help from the modersators to sort everything out. After which the forum will be deleted.

This way we lay the responsibility mostly at the modder. The Org staff while having the ultimate word might not be the best at deciding. I have the feeling that some will doubt my objectiveness because the Two Crowns already has a subforum. TosaInu and barocca don't have that much time to watch closely at each mod.
If we let the Dungeon moderators pick out mods and propose to modders wether they want a forum then it might be tempting for them to say yes without thinking it through. I would hate to see a mod die because it got appointed a forum (prematurely).
And a poll in which a mod gets 10 votes says of course nothing about wether it should get a forum.

My proposal no. 1
If a modder thinks that his mod deserves its own forum then he should write a PM to barocca or me (if you trust me) where he explains that making a forum for his mod is not a waste of time. It's not a matter of :Other mods have a forum. Give me a forum too.

Cheers, Duke John

Myrddraal
06-26-2004, 17:50
Quote[/b] ]before you say i wanna forum, ASK yourself the big questions,
1. does my mod NEED it's own forum?


Quote[/b] ]If someone makes a mod mostly on his own then a subforum might be a bad move.

I'm not sure, but these look like subtle hints in my direction. http://www.totalwar.org/forum/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif

Most of these replys seem to be about whether a mod should get a subforum.

I guess I didn't explain myself very well. I don't want a subforum for my mod. I don't know what I'd do with one.

My problem is that I fear my mod will be eclipsed by the subforums. People will come to the forum, look down the list of subforums, and assume that the mods with the subforums are the ones worth looking at. Otherwise why do they have a seperate forum. I know that those aren't the reasons subforums are given, but I also know that some people will assume that it is without actually thinking to check.

We all make our mods for other people to appreciate, Its all well and good for the more popular mods to have subforums, but I don't want my mod to be forgotton because no one bothers to have a look.

Antalis::
06-26-2004, 17:58
I think we should look at it in a practical way: HTW had 87 sites with over 2200 posts.

So it was a totally mess and we answered the same questions again and again because people didn´t searched the thread to find the answer.

So I think a mod should get its own subforum if the interrest is so huge that it gets a totally mess, if you cannot make seperate threads.

Duke John
06-26-2004, 18:09
Quote[/b] ]I'm not sure, but these look like subtle hints in my direction.
Most other modders don't seem to have little problems with this, so yes you get a special treatment http://www.totalwar.org/forum/non-cgi/emoticons/gc-wink.gif But no, it was more meant in a general way.


Quote[/b] ]My problem is that I fear my mod will be eclipsed by the subforums.
Hmmm, you've got a point there. This is certainly not meant to happen. And I think you might be right. How many people (especially new patrons) know that the Engineers Guild has many mods? How many of them will first go to the mod subforums before they go into the mess of the Engineers Guild?
I know that if I look at gaming forum that has mod subforums I look first at the mods that have a subforum.

Your point certainly can't be overlooked. The only solution I see is that the subforums are made seperate from the Guild.

Any other thoughts?

Acailia
06-27-2004, 02:46
To throw in a newbie perspective, i went nearly insane trying to dig through 40-80 pages of info on the big mods to find info bits, subforums for the larger threads are just about essential for good functionality. Maybe just judging the need for subforums by how long and cumbersome the threads on a mod have gotten is a workable concept.

Acailia
06-27-2004, 02:51
Oh and if it helps Myrddraal, I'll for sure check out your mod when it's up, I find it pretty interesting. Just rarely in a commenting mood, heh. I applaud the effort to do something fantasy mod wise that isn't necessarily in vogue, or should i say, middle earth.

barocca
06-27-2004, 05:27
Quote[/b] (Myrddraal @ June 26 2004,11:50)]
Quote[/b] ]before you say i wanna forum, ASK yourself the big questions,
1. does my mod NEED it's own forum?


Quote[/b] ]If someone makes a mod mostly on his own then a subforum might be a bad move.

I'm not sure, but these look like subtle hints in my direction. ~;)

Most of these replys seem to be about whether a mod should get a subforum.

I guess I didn't explain myself very well.  I don't want a subforum for my mod.  I don't know what I'd do with one.

My problem is that I fear my mod will be eclipsed by the subforums.  People will come to the forum, look down the list of subforums, and assume that the mods with the subforums are the ones worth looking at.  Otherwise why do they have a seperate forum.  I know that those aren't the reasons subforums are given, but I also know that some people will assume that it is without actually thinking to check.  

We all make our mods for other people to appreciate, Its all well and good for the more popular mods to have subforums, but I don't want my mod to be forgotton because no one bothers to have a look.
only a little bit,
you raised valid points and made a sound argument that some people may want forums because he's got one
(even if you don't want one, you pointed it out that some people might)

thus i was addressing my replies more to the points you raised,
and not so much as at you :-)

you also make a sound argument that some people may think the only mods worth looking at are the ones in their own subforums,

i dont like the idea of seperating the mods which have their own forums from the core of the Dungeon.

i understand completely that 87 pages was too many to read through,
and breaking the pages down while remaining in the EG would have caused absolute chaos,

we did not want any more mods going offsite aka Napoleonic and perhaps causing 2 effects,
the mods becomming marginalised (i have absolutely no idea what staus Nap mod is in these days)

and people, who have expertise that could help many mods under development, not coming to the org as frequently.
(duplication of effort)

i am uncertain of an equitable resolution,
i will have to investigate further
and see if perhaps subforums could be linked from the EG instead of the Dungeon entrance?
thus they appear listed at the top of EG?

as an aside -
We can assign a specific skin for each subforum, (aka the sword dojo skin)
 - thus each subforum could have it's own atmosphere
B.

Duke John
06-29-2004, 09:38
Since few modders seem to have an opinion about it, lets not waste too much time trying to please everybody. barocca, do you agree with keeping it as it is and if another mod wants a subforum we will see wether it deserves one?

Cheers, Duke John

Myrddraal
06-29-2004, 17:29
Just go ahead and do it, its impossible to please everyone, I'm not happy about it, but I seem to be in a minority. Its too late to remove the existing subforums, they are already well established, so just to what u like.

NagatsukaShumi
06-29-2004, 18:49
I shouldn't worry Myddraal, I highly doubt the use of sub-forums will seriously harm any of the other active MODs.

I don't see a change anyway, HTW and the like were always going to out-shine other MODs that have only just started up, simply because it is already established and there are playable releases for them.

I wouldn't worry, there is clearly plenty of interest in other MODs, a few days ago I even had somebody drop by the CTW thread which has been dead during the duration of my exams, just goes to show there is interest if a dead thread can get visitors.

I have no problems with the subforums myself, if a MOD is a big project like HTW, NTW and TC then I don't see anything wrong with a subforum, it helps the MOD finish far quicker than it would normally as information helping the team crafting the final product is in a ordered thread rather than dotted all over one thread.

Sure, there will be a little bit of a drop in interest in other MODs but I highly doubt anybody would think that the only MODs in development are TC and HTW so they are bound to drop by the Engineers Guild.

Nag http://www.totalwar.org/forum/non-cgi/emoticons/idea.gif

Duke John
06-29-2004, 19:31
Quote[/b] ] I highly doubt the use of sub-forums will seriously harm any of the other active MODs.

I agree. Since H:TW got his own subforum I visited the threads fewer and fewer and now I don't visit them at all. That period is not to my taste and in the Engineers Guild I occasionally dropped by to see how things went and perhaps I could with something. And H:TW is no longer in my moderator jurisdiction http://www.totalwar.org/forum/non-cgi/emoticons/gc-wink.gif

Myrddraal
07-08-2004, 17:54
I guess its prob. to late to make a suggestion now, but here goes anyway:

As I have already said, my problem with this system is that I am worried about my mod being forgotten about because it is overshadowed by mods with subforums. (Read my previous posts for an explanation of this)

This suggestion may solve the problem, if it is possible.

1. All mods would be listed in the Engineers Guild as before. The thread with the most recent post would appear at the top of the list etc.

BUT...

2. When you clicked on a mod with subforums, instead of a single thread appearing, the various subthreads would appear. In the Engineers Guild mods with a subforum would have a special icon, not a completely seperate header in the Dungeon.

Conclusion:

The problem of having a mod too big for a single thread is solved so admin becomes easier, and all the problems I stated above are also solved.


Of course this may not be possible, but if it was I think everyone would be happy: Admin would be solved (the main argument for subforums) and there would be no risk of other mods being 'overshadowed' (the main argument against subforums)

Thx

Myrddraal
07-15-2004, 23:26
I take it by the lack of replies that its either not possible, too late, or u just haven't had a look at this thread yet?? An answer would be nice, even if its just 'no.'

ShadesPanther
07-16-2004, 13:16
Think its a bit late now


I visit all of the subforums and the engineers guild as well so I'm not complaining with the new layout.

barocca
07-16-2004, 13:28
we will almost certainly be transferring to a new brand of forum software very soon,
no further modifications to this board will be done (unless critical)
once we settle into the new software we may try experimenting just to see what it is capable of.

cheers,
B.

ah_dut
07-19-2004, 23:49
Quote[/b] (Myrddraal @ July 08 2004,11:54)]I guess its prob. to late to make a suggestion now, but here goes anyway:

As I have already said, my problem with this system is that I am worried about my mod being forgotten about because it is overshadowed by mods with subforums.  (Read my previous posts for an explanation of this)

This suggestion may solve the problem, if it is possible.  

1. All mods would be listed in the Engineers Guild as before.  The thread with the most recent post would appear at the top of the list etc.

BUT...

2. When you clicked on a mod with subforums, instead of a single thread appearing, the various subthreads would appear.  In the Engineers Guild mods with a subforum would have a special icon, not a completely seperate header in the Dungeon.  

Conclusion:

The problem of having a mod too big for a single thread is solved so admin becomes easier, and all the problems I stated above are also solved.


Of course this may not be possible, but if it was I think everyone would be happy:  Admin would be solved (the main argument for subforums) and there would be no risk of other mods being 'overshadowed' (the main argument against subforums)

Thx
the answer is i don't think so I look at BKB and The Fall of Rome mods stuff more than HTW ot TC so i don't think any overshadowing happens really.

themonkey
08-09-2004, 11:29
Myrddraal You could do what I did for my mod team and set-up a Forum
I got mine in:
Pro Boards (http://www.proboards.com)

barocca
08-09-2004, 12:17
personally i am not a fan of modding groups moving to another forum,
you risk losing access to the knowledge base here, and we lose access to your knowledge and experiences,

i would rather see more "mod specific" forums here at the org than suffer any more "brain drain",

All requests for a mod specific forum will be discussed between Duke John, Tosa Inu and Myself,
so simply pm me and i will start a discussion with them regarding any requests.

Cheers,
Barocca

Lord Krazy
09-25-2004, 03:07
Well I think the sub forum idea is a good one and I think it only reasonable to accept that it cannot be applied to everybody equally .
This is a fan site for a game not a charity :bow:
If it gives you something for nothing then great , if not what have you got to complain about .
The org cannot be held responsible for the rise and fall of mods . That lies with the makers and the general public .
I'm involved in a mod that you might say was popular , it was started here and became popular before it had it's own forum . So it does not follow that having a forum makes a mod successful . Neither does it folow that having a forum makes it easier to to complete your goal .
Having said that if you are generating lot's of gigs of downloads and thousands of posts then a forum and site of your own, may be a good idea .

I know that having our own forum and infastructure , that does not depend on the charity of third parties, has helped us to develop as a group and improve our final product .
I think the fact that we have 780 members at present 18000 articals 3 million plus hits this month, from 25,000+ people and thousands of people downloading our mod to the extent that we can't afford to host it ourselves right now , shows that it does justfiy it's own site and forum . This is consistant with my idea that the product and the public should be the best
judge of this sort of decision .If you think otherwise fair enough , I'm just going by my standards . This response is also a reflection of the effort and dedication of the staff that have made this possible .An effort that IMHO deserves praise and nothing but . Their acievment would never have been possible if we had not started our own site and developed our skills to the extent that we all did something we never did before and made a good job of it. I have made many bonds with my colleges that would not have been possible if we had not moved on and got our own space and I would not exchange that for anything . So I would be a total
hypocrite if I were to say I was against people having their own forum , so I won't ' cause I'm not .

However just like barroca implied if you do start your own forum because the org cannot facilitate the needs of your growth , please don't just go away and forget that this is the best place to be for all things regarding Total War. You will get the best support here for your mod and you should share any new knowledge you gain with the people here . This site will be here long
after many others and IMHO is the one that deserves the most attention and info regarding the Total War community .

The most important thing for me is that I made mods for people to enjoy , and being a person myself, strangly enough ,I found that I felt a need to enjoy them myself before posting them to the public . So seen as I liked it and I fitted the catagorey of the consumer type,(human with a pc and copy of mtw ) I had achived my goal of making at least one person happy .

So apply for a forum, accept the decision and if you still feel the need to have your own site and forum,do the decent thing and remember where you came from .On our site We have a policy of keeping our spam to ourselves and the rest comes here . Granted we have nothing to tell now as it's all been done on the learing curve , but the principle still applies . So RTW will alter that a bit .

So I hope I'v confused the issues even more now :charge:

LK ~:smoking: