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A Guide to Online Game Management

Written by The Staff


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Be careful putting unsolicited advertisements on forums or newsgroups. You will mostly likely be contacted by the moderator asking you to refrain from such behavior possibly leading to banning you on your second offence. You also stand the risk of being flamed (receiving lots of angry emails containing profanity at least).

Dung Heap: Up to your ears in it
Sam had finally managed to design a game with a wealth of background information and enough high quality Game Masters. He held a tight reign on his temper. A post to PBEM.com made players flock to his site once more. Everything seemed set for a perfect game.

But for some reason the game didn't have momentum. Game masters had trouble keeping up and after a while showed up less and less. Sam had no idea why. Of course this had its effect on players, who in addition to still complaining about a lack of moderators that was objectively speaking not true, also complained about a lack of accomplishment.

In response Sam opened up an OOC forum. At first this seemed a good idea. But then the forum seemed to contain only requests for new features and a long litany of complaints. Sam wondered if he could ever do it right.

Sam didn't realize that his GM's were spending more valuable time on keeping records than actually moderating. This demotivated his best people. Since he had not implemented tools to get feedback this oversight was never mentioned. Likewise players were frustrated because they couldn't record their accomplishments and didn't feel part of the game as whole. A combination of OOC forums, RPG tools and a newsletter -before- things soured up would have bound both players and moderators more tightly to his game. Now, the OOC forum only served as a let out for frustration.


Disclaimer: Dung Heap was not based on any particular game. This fictional example was drawn from the collective experiences of the Amethyst Alliance staff, and yes, we were shocked at how much alike our stories were.

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