Presence of Authority

Call of Combat
Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-14T19:32:59Z — #1

Very simple,

Will we be seeing stars?

(red, blue, yellow and the almighty white star?)

Will Player moderators exists once more? Will new player helpers exist? And will we have the luxury of playing with our awesome dev team with their golden star shining oh so brightly?

UltimateGod — 2014-11-14T21:57:21Z — #2

I can answer one question for this.
I plan on playing. Whether it be on a different name, that will depend on the amount of spam I receive while playing. Right now I plan on using the name I always have wink

Sometimes you just want to play the game and not field question right?

Scowen — 2014-11-15T03:12:19Z — #3

I think that we need to steer away from this idea of a tight knit community like v1, the game needs a larger player base and needs to be built to handle this. Therefore, the idea of having personal moderators is bad, my suggestion: a tribunal. Players can report each other for what ever reason, other players then review each case (with all names marked as anon) and make decisions that way. Similar to League of Legends Tribunal.

Just my 2 cents

Florian — 2014-11-15T12:37:11Z — #4

Good question . To be honest, we don't know how we will organize the community exactly yet. I do know that like in CoCv1 we will do everything we can to make the community central to the game. AGs are criticial for this I believe. I really loved how in CoCv1 almost everyone was a member of one AG or another, even if they weren't die-hard or highly competitive players.

And I am sure we will have some sort of badges on the website, in the lobby and in the game and I still like the idea of engagement the community in managing itself also. But it is important that any system we work out is scalable, so that we can handle more players than in CoCv1. Any system also needs to very welcoming to new players. "Tight-knit" is good, but it shouldn't become too hard to become part of.

So in short, we have ideas on this, but we aren't quite sure on the details yet. So keep the suggestions coming I would say! smile. What do you guys think?

Alexander — 2014-11-15T14:57:54Z — #5

In the original, AG's were tight-knit sub communities that had their own standards internally. I'd suggest expanding on this.

This forum software was designed to be self-moderated, I'd say create a report system that is voted on tribunal-like. For the rest a powerful muting system and allow AG"s to mute people AG-wide and even stop AG members from speaking for XXX time (while AG members) or playing games in "AG Rooms".

Make AG's self moderate as much as possible, with officers being sort of "Community Moderators" that people CHOOSE to accept. If one is corrupt, they can simply join a better subcommunity. Give AG's incentives to want lots of players (perhaps introduce a form of "This Player Helped Me" button, if someone is thanked enough give him a medal for community service they can choose to equip next to their name in the list, and give AG's points for having lots of these?)

Then, make AG's voted on by the community itself (instead of letting people who have no advantage in allowing other AG's exist make this decision), perhaps something like, allow AG leaders to have a bit more influence, but most influence to players, and then approval by a dev/admin ? Could start the original ones through Kickstarter or such.

I don't know, just thinking. All I know is that I think it would be the greatest waste in the world not to transfer that feeling of community from the AG's in CoCv1 to CoCv2, and I think it'd be even better to try and increase it.'

Edit: Hell, about AG rooms, that could be a way to make money. Renting out servers to AG's and players and allowing them to have all kinds of crazy rules without ranking (or more normal ones with ranking)

Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-15T15:12:54Z — #6

I really would encourage re-introducing player moderators + encouraging devs playing quite often:

To conclude, I think we won't fully be able to answer this question until we see how many players we get, but I think
- CoC should not, like nearly every game, create a brick wall between the devs and the players ( which is a pain for you guys but it wouldn't take much doing!)
- Player moderators should be re-introduced in the interests of keeping a clean, tight-knit community. With the stars - prevention is better than cure.

To the above posts, I do like the voting system, but I strongly believe that the devs should interview MP applicants much like last time, and the MPs themselves should vote for a head MP (which is a role I think existsed in v1? correct me if i'm mistaken). Not sure the voting should exist between the community as it will most likely be completely bias.

Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-15T17:55:21Z — #7

Replying once more just to stress despite how much I like the voting idea, I think if AGs have any part in it, it will become completely biased. You could stop MPs from joining an AG but that wouldn't help at all, i'm sure.

I think if you Devs spend a short time picking 5-10 player mods (through interviews + questions perhaps), the system will become self-reliant providing you've given them the necessary tools. Lets assume 10 player mods have been selected based on their maturity, past V1 record, personality and game times. After a while, said player mods can vote amongst themselves three people they think should be head MPs, which would be approved by the Devs. This would be permanent until the three people decide to step down. New Player Helper Applicants would then speak to the HeadMPs and MPs who would then vote amongst themselves who should get the job.

The chain of command:
- Devs
- Head MPs
- MPs
- New Player Helpers

How would this work?
- I'd suggest a developer such as UltimateGod (as an example), to host a monthly meeting with all Player Mods, to perhaps announce incoming changes, get feedback on how the system is working, and what is/isn't working.
- I think Player Moderators should also work closely with AG leaders (who in turn may have gotten feedback from their members) as they, I'm sure would have a fountain of good, clear ideas of how their game and how the running of their AG could improve.

**- If CoC does rake in a shed load more players than originally anticipated, all the Devs need to do is say to the Head MPs
D - " can increase the MP capacity to x amount"
HMP - "Really? That's pretty cool
D - "Yeah we thought so..."
HMP- "Ok, catch ya later!"
D - "Bye!............I miss you already"
Hmp - "What was that?"
D - "Nothing!"
Hmp - "Ok bye!"
(HMP leaves)
D - ".........I'm so lonely."**

Scowen — 2014-11-15T20:05:52Z — #8

Again, you need to divulge away from the idea of this game being exactly like the old days with a graphics update. We want this to be big and we want the community to expand, not retract again. If we start hand-picking moderators and helpers etc. then it will end as before.

Always look to the stars, past the stars and to the darkness - Scowen 2014

Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-15T20:11:35Z — #9

"If we start hand-picking moderators and helpers etc. then it will end as before".

I'm sure you don't mean to suggest player moderators were the root cause of V1's closure?
MPs are another CoC trait, something that makes it different. It's a concept that can be adapted to different proportions depending on the gamesize. Sure if CoC brought in a playerbase of millions to rival games like warcraft, sure, i'd object. As I pointed out, I don't believe this is a question that we can fully answer without knowing how many players we're gonna get. If we have a rough guess however, it's likely player mods will still be useful.

Scowen — 2014-11-15T20:22:14Z — #10

I'm not saying that the problem was hand-picking moderators, I'm saying that the problem was that the game was developed to never expand past a few thousand players (with 100-200 concurrent). I just hope that Florian and co. have thought about this well and hard, I want this to be big, they deserve it!

Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-15T20:44:07Z — #11

The game was never developed past a few thousands players because it didn't have a few thousand players due to lack of advertising, funding and manpower. Most players that came on, usually stayed on.

Alexander — 2014-11-15T21:07:15Z — #12

A general issue with communities tends to be that moderation is very hard to scale. With 5 Mp's it's easy. 10 it's starting to become a mess and a second head MP may be needed. But what if we reach 5 head MP's? The more mods - the more corruption, inactivity, the overhead will increase the amount of required mods multiplying this effect. Furthermore, in bigger teams, there tends to be more (and bigger) exodus'. Something goes wrong and a tight knit group of friends within the teams leaves - which always forms due human nature (people are far more eager to recommend/push friends/like minded people as colleagues than opponents).

The biggest game I am personally aware of with an effective moderator system is Guns of Icarus (the Community Ambassador system is absolutely brilliant - they're not moderators per se, they're there to tip off paid moderators, manage certain languages and make everyone in the community feel personally in touch with the staff).

Furthermore - there's going to be a LOT of different, conflicting, cultures and senses of justice. It's unacceptable for new players and children to hear the F word repeatedly in the chat. It's also unacceptable for people who take the game seriously not to be able to swear in a game about war - one of the most brutal things in the world. Differences in moderation can be a big reason for people to feel as if the staff isn't in touch with them (the most extreme example being oGame where bans are given out on a whim by some and after long discussions by others).

Actually, I think Community Ambassadors would be a terrific idea, as they wouldn't hold an executive role there is no risk of corruption. Can simply assign everyone with the right attitude for it and it would serve to make people feel moderated even if they really aren't.

I think the idea of moderators voting themselves who leads them can't work - because a leader needs to be entirely different material then an actual moderator. You want a leader people feel they can go to when a mod screws up, who doesn't attempt to protect his moderators, as mods DO go bad. It happens all the time, in every community. Any form of Head MP needs to be independent of both mods and players and fully capable of making non-biased decisions. If the head-MP is a friend of the mod, chances are, you end up with just another barrier between the mods and the developers, opposed to a check on the mods.

There were some awesome MP's and it's a cool title - but ask yourself this - can it really scale to handle 20 times the amount of content? Because we have significantly more resources being put into CoC this time, and anything remotely compareable to the size of the original CoC would end up having cost them a LOT of time and resources they'l never get back. I think having a community 20 times the size is a very realistic, attainable and reasonable goal. I don't think the old system would have handled that - at all.

League of Legends has a tribunal, The Elder Scrolls Online has blocking, and looking at smaller games, Guns of Icarus (which is extremely similar in type of community and situation, in my opinion.) uses CA's, paid mods, crews and ignore buttons. Minecraft and Natural Selection utilize externally managed private servers. I think we should look at how existing games have solved these problems and learn from that. I would love for the old system to work - I really would Monkey. It was lovely and it fit the military theme very well. And I get where you're coming from, but I am severely worried it's going to cause all kinds of hell if scaled.

Edit: By the way, new player retention was one of the bigger issues of CoC - I've got some statistics from MP's and it wasn't neat. The java-nature was probably a pretty big reason for that though!

Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-15T22:19:07Z — #13

In regards to voting, I agree it would probably be a mess, but it was food for thought.

I've played guns of icarus and am aware of the CA system, but you've slightly overlooked something Alex.

There won't be paid moderators. From what I understand of the team's financial position, any money will be used to improve the game and advertise. When someone starts yelling abuse in a private chat that the ambassadors cannot see. When a game is disrupted, or when a server crashes,If we have no paid moderator to tip off, it's safe to assume our ambassadors won't be able to do much. Someone has to be online who can kick/ban/mute/warn/restart servers, period.

The player moderator system was somewhat successful and I don't see any reason to change it or abandon it as of yet.

Alexander — 2014-11-15T22:59:22Z — #14

Om nom nom.

Guns of Icarus has a smaller and less skilled team than Call of Combat - I think it is very much possible it's financial position will end up vastly superior.

Mind you I love the devs of GoI - they're the friendliest and most communicative devs i've seen in any game, period. But as you're aware of the game, you probably can agree that this game is having a far better start from what it appears.

Advertising only makes money for games in certain situations - it's very possible the kickstarter and a possible Steam Greenlight release will bring in more (almost) free advertising than they are prepared to handle. There's multiple companies that specialize in quickly overseeing and handling reports.

Servers should be able to restart themselves and report errors directly to the developers, Usually there's a form of master-slave set up to take care of that. I've no idea what direction the team is heading with that though...

My point is - that is often not needed. These is an incredible amount of games that do not have that - GoI was originally purely moderated by devs with tips by CA's, and honestly I didn't see anyone get banned whatsoever. It's perhaps a better choice to let users moderate their own streams and/or create their own "homes" with their own rules, than it is to attempt to centralize this.

Mind you - having it done by a combination of features, buttons, filters etc is infinitely scaleable. It works for quite a lot of games out there.

Somewhat, for a very small niche game. Christ, i've never seen more then two servers fill up, or more than about 5 have actual games going on. I really think scaling is going to be a problem...

Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-16T00:49:16Z — #15

I wouldn't say the GoI team isn't as skilled. The graphics for a start are exceptionally good, movement is good, the UI and menu's are very flashy and neat, I could go on. They also happen to be on steam, yet they have 0 advertising. I only found out about it after watching Pewdepie. Also it's being made to sound like it boasts an angelic community. You have abuse, trolls and hackers on every game, GoI is no different and every clown I saw on there got away with swearing, trolling and (absolutely shocking) racism. So I think we have to agree/disagree on how well their system runs.

Other games may not use MPs, but that shouldn't affect what CoC chooses to use or become. It's an original idea with original traits and features, looking at what other games do and joining the bandwagon isn't the way to go.

I think this one has to come down to a debate with the devs whatever we argue on here. We don't know their financial position for sure, we have no idea how many players Call of combat will attract, we don't know how much time Devs will be able to spend in game and we don't know how Kading want's to shape the community.

But I maintain this one topic, I believe, holds extreme value however, as it determines what sort of community we'll share. What principals we'll hold and how people treat eachother. P.S I HAVE enjoyed the debate though, keep it coming nom nom).

Rezurexc — 2014-11-16T03:15:23Z — #16

MP's are just moderators, like in a lot of other games, it's not just in V1, given the name MP is almost original itself, but I agree with Scowen.

bacchus — 2014-11-16T03:34:28Z — #17

Having been an MP for however many years, it really seemed like most of what we did was listen to language complaints, fix the rules and filtering for that and no issue. Spam and trolling MPs out of bordem was also certainly a time consumer lol. Another issue was arguing, usually the result of an AG not rematching, trying to match teams/pick maps, or kill stealing. I would assume with a bigger community like 2am chain was, a lot of that goes away except with the elite player groups.

I would assume this development team is going to have the resources to make the solutions to the short comings in the previous versions to make things easier or quicker on the moderators. Mute bans would have been the best tool, up to a few days. I think we eventually had an hour lobby mute didnt we? In the end we want people to play the game, and it was unfortunate to take that away from people because they like to swear and what not.

I also agree its very important for a leader of the moderators to be somewhat disconnected from the underlings, so they can make the hard decisions if your moderator core isnt all that professional. Cough. Certainly we had a few examples of that from time to time.

I see little issue scaling this into the 500 users on range, thats what it was with 2am, and thats the template that was followed. Scaling to 5000, i dont think an individual lobby would work well haha. A lot of the problems we had with being such a small game disappear when users scale up a lot. Instead its new issues, that need to be handled by the dev team. I believe kading or paulie had mentioned a ticket system back in the day, that could be a fair system with only a small team.

The good news is, this isnt that important for alpha, and a crude system for the beta should suffice. I would be willing to do some moderating when that time comes, or anything with helping set the system up.

Monkey_Bullet — 2014-11-16T14:52:14Z — #19

I have to challenge you again Scowen, for multiple reasons:

a) I'll reiterate, however useful it can be to take inspiration off other games, there needs to be a line between taking inspiration and copying. Call of Combat's gameplay concept I'd go as far to say is extremely unique. It's come this far with pure original ideas, and like others have said on here, there's no reason it can't be scaled accordingly with it's current principals + structures.

b) The Tribunal system works if you log on to the website, and vote on past offenses other players have committed correct? Great, but who is there to mute or kick the player while the offense is being committed? Do we all have to wait till he logs off or gets bored of screaming at everyone before we can log on and ban him/her for x amount of hours?

c) I'm not a massive fan of bans, and as Bacchus said, "it was unfortunate to take that away from people because they like to swear and what not", but there's a big difference between an accidental curse and opening a private message with someone with the intention of exchanging verbal abuse.

But overall, I completely agree with Bacchus in saying that the devs have all of alpha and beta to try out some sort of familiar system, however crude.

Alexander — 2014-11-16T16:42:50Z — #20

@Monkey_Bullet The main advantage of Unity3D is that it makes it much easier, programming wise, to have terrific graphics. I did screw up with that statement - I think their artists are very talented. But the UI's/Menu's often show little purpose, the design is incomplete, they've been struggling with the lobby system for years now and frankly the game as of today still isn't really a beta even in terms of polish and features.

I've not noticed any such thing, perhaps you've played at different times than I, but i've never noticed a hacker, any significant trolling or abuse. Nor did I see any significant racism. I've had a terrific time in the community - I got taught the game by a CA and had developers contact me any time I encountered a bug (and that did happen quite a few times). Was quite lovely.

MP's are, as @Rezurexc essentially said, just mods like almost every small community has. Unless you have a new, fresh take on an existing idea or a sure-fire plan to do it better than others, it's usually better to copy something that works.

(om nom nom nom this is just the appetizer mate!)

@bacchus I completely agree with wanting people to play the game. It's a large driver behind my personal ideas.

To me it's kind of like politics in the real world. Some countries forbid some ideas as they may end up harming others or are deemed immoral. Some countries feel that degrades a country to the level of those immoral groups (though sadly even those won't fully back that - think of the Netherlands claiming to be fully tolerant yet forbidding the possession of Mein Kampf - it's hypocritical as hell). In the end what's acceptable and what is not is subjective and you have to ask yourself if it's not better to seek to find a way for everyone to live life the way they want to opposed to trying to enforce a single belief system. I think this applies to communities as well - I'd hate to be forced to be child-proof, but i'd also hate to be surrounded by trolls. On the other hand, I think those people do make up a significant amount and shouldn't be denied the game for the way they are or the age they are...

@Scowen Why would that need to be set up? Just have reports go to a database, then allow people to vote for them and automate some actions, are you thinking of some kind of external script or am I reading you wrong mate?

A. The core gameplay is unique but realize that doesn't mean every aspect of it is superior. If you look at the best games - they all have unique core gameplay mechanics combined with some smart stealing. Steal and improve what you can't recreate better is a fairly good attitude in game design. CoC had its issues - a lot of those issues have been succesfully overcome by other games. So long as it delivers the same experience and core mechanics as CoCv1, there's no harm in copying the solutions of other communities and games I feel.

B. There's multiple games that have a system of muting personally, and automatically muting someone who is "controversial" until looked into, some form of "Reputation" system perhaps where you gain it by playing, not getting punished or muted oftenly and winning games as a team and lose it for doing just about the opposite, with lower reputations being more likely to be automuted.

Of course that's just an idea, i've iterated another idea (the AG-based system) earlier in this thread.

C, True, other hand it's a war game. "You german traitor scum I hope you rot and burn" may be OK by some and abuse by others. Where is the line? It's different for everyone. Teling someone "F you" is totally unacceptable by a lot of people, but I am guessing most of us feel the inherrent desire to tell that to that SoB who didn't follow orders, getting everyone killed, every once in a while wink

I don't think the devs should be scared to experiment. And I think them choosing this forum software shows some desire to. This software is in many ways fiercely inferior to the alternatives, its key advantage over anything else is that it has a fairly revolutionary moderation system stuck_out_tongue

Rezurexc — 2014-11-16T22:17:58Z — #21

I just want to point out, that we are all grown men (I think), and I understand all of the verbal abuse, but let men be men. I know we'll attract players who are not of age, so I suggest, like in other games, a filter to be enabled or disabled by the player in his options menu. I'm just saying this because sometimes I don't want to act like I'm suppose to be a role model or something every single day I play this game. This is a war game, and I'm pretty sure in WW2, they did not go around and talk to each other like, "Oh Private Jones, would you like this fantastic cup of tea from the Caribbean, it is exquisitely delightful if I may add." I don't want to be that guy every single day, you know? Lol, I bet most of the time they talked to each other like, "Private Jones! Get over here and eat this god damn soup!" Then maybe the F word here and there, and they start talking about their sex life with all the girls they been with lol. (In almost every single war movie.)

My point, I want to feel like I'm playing a game with grown men. I understand keeping the chat clean, but the competitive ones out there like myself, Rather than saying, "I will roll down your pants and stick my stick up your buttox!" I would say, "You shit bag! I'll beat you next time!" Remember, this is a war game after all. With the filter, it will make that sentence look like, "You **** bag, I'll beat you next time!" Or, "You bag, I'll beat you next time!" Depending on how it's set up.

I know there will be people who won't agree with me, and you guys are entitled to your opinion.