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I'm of no doubt that this forum is full of bright people and I'm sure that their intentions are as you've described, but my point is that since they are motivated differently, despite their shared goals, that they should not be managed in the same way for the sake of the community itself. It needs more active care. Also, don't forget about less passionate members. Typically a forum will only be 1% active users and 9% occasional contributors. The rest are generally inactive. If you work assuming that the community is entirely populated by the most active of the 1% then you are not providing enough stimulatution to properly engage the rest of the users and so the community and the quality of feedback that you get out of it suffer as a result. This paragraph is just making my point that appropriate community management is important here, I'm not disagreeing with anything specific and actually I think we're in agreement here really :)

 

Moving on, I understand your point about there being a large number of topics that have been discussed already on the forum. If it's anything like the BGEE forums I'm sure they're absolutely heaving with feedback. However you cannot treat a forum like a filing cabinet. The main purpose of a forum is to get a community to discuss things. To get the community to discuss things you need to make it as easy as possible to do so, as I said earlier not everyone is passionate and you need to engage those that aren't as well as those who are. When people come to a forum they do not expect to have to look through double digits of forum names and then to click through various folders to get to the discussion area (I know that it's an extreme example but bear with me) that is relevant to the topic to them. If you do not make it instantly clear where someone should post then they are much more likely to become disinterested.

 

In addition to this, having too many sub forums limits activity in each section (as I said in my earlier post) and it limits browsing. If each subforum only has a small number of active threads in it then members browsing that forum will only see those threads thus reducing their potential engagement. If you take a large sample size this shows a very pronounced effect.

 

As far as I am concerned a community is about discussion, so repeating discussions that happened a while ago isn't necessarily a bad thing. There is also always the search function and the tagging system to find topics of interest. If the purpose of the community is to provide feedback to the devs then a more formalised system should be used. It takes a level of commitment, but I know of communities that make great use out of ideation and feedback boards that are specifically tailored for communication between staff and community.

Edited by Kore
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All we really need are separate subforums for spoilers and tech support, perhaps another for modding, but until the game is released none of these is necessary.

 

Splitting the forum up into so many arbitrary sections at this point, long before the game is in beta, will only result in duplicated discussion topics. We have already seen a lot of duplicated topics with the separate Gameplay & Mechanics, Widgets & Bytes and General Discussion sections. Fragmenting the forum even more would be a mistake in my view.

 

Did you read all the posts?

 

Another thing I thought about regarding "Developer <-> Community", splitting up the Forums will make it easier for the Developers (Specifically) to see what we are talking about. Again, pointing back to the graph of Update 30.

 

EDIT:

 

However you cannot forum like a filing cabinet.

 

So true and I agree with my whole-heart. Looking at the Wasteland 2 model, again, I see that it doesn't necessarily have to be a "filing cabinet".

Edited by Osvir
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Too many sub-forums relative to activity tends to kill activity, because it becomes really annoying to actually navigate the forums as a user. It would be a different question if these forums were a report database for the devs, e.g. a beta feedback forum.

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All we really need are separate subforums for spoilers and tech support, perhaps another for modding, but until the game is released none of these is necessary.

 

Splitting the forum up into so many arbitrary sections at this point, long before the game is in beta, will only result in duplicated discussion topics. We have already seen a lot of duplicated topics with the separate Gameplay & Mechanics, Widgets & Bytes and General Discussion sections. Fragmenting the forum even more would be a mistake in my view.

 

Did you read all the posts?

 

Another thing I thought about regarding "Developer <-> Community", splitting up the Forums will make it easier for the Developers (Specifically) to see what we are talking about. Again, pointing back to the graph of Update 30.

 

 

People will still keep posting their ideas and topics in the General Discussion, no matter how many subforums are created. It would just cause lots of duplicated topics. It would not make things any easier for the devs to review.

 

Why not simply use tags instead of separate forum sections?

Edited by IcyDeadPeople
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Too many sub-forums relative to activity tends to kill activity, because it becomes really annoying to actually navigate the forums as a user. It would be a different question if these forums were a report database for the devs, e.g. a beta feedback forum.

 

And that's that (I agree with this), I hope my thread gave some insight at least :D

 

I also kind of want in on it (beta-esque forums for the non-premium folk) :luck: just clarifying if it wasn't obvious 8)

 

I also understand that this is something to think about for the future, when there's more activity. I'm just scrying :)

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Want to clarify that I am not talking about method 1 below.:

 

Not like this/Method 1 (Beta-Forums maybe?):

- Category

-- Forum1

---Sub-Forum1a

---Sub-Forum1b

--Forum2

---Sub-Forum2a

---Sub-Forum2b

 

But like this/Method 2:

-Category

--Forum1

--Forum2

--Forum3

--Forum4

 

So the structure would still be the same as it is now.

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Any professional online community manager would clearly see the advantage of me having my own sub-forum. It is literally a no-brainer.

 

Well obviously that goes without saying. Anyone with Lord Flashheart as their avatar obviously know's their business!

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I'm glad someone else understands. There are two of us now.

 

Oooh... I researched to understand what you were going on about and dug this deep into it... curiously I kind of want it in P:E :D (anti-hero protagonist)

http://en.wikipedia..../Harry_Flashman

Fraser's Flashman is an antihero who runs from danger or hides cowering in fear, betrays or abandons acquaintances at the slightest incentive, bullies and beats servants with gusto, beds every available woman, carries off any loot he can grab, and gambles and boozes enthusiastically. Nevertheless, through a combination of luck and cunning, he usually ends each volume acclaimed as a hero.

 

Off-Topic though but this thread is dead *shrug* it came to do what it came to do :)

Edited by Osvir
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Lord Flash-heart and Flashman are very different, one is a TV character on Blackadder, one is George Macdonald Fraser's re-imaginings of the bully from 'Tom Brown's Schooldays'

 

The Flashman books, however, are as you astutely identify the perfect template for an enjoyably 'evil' protagonist.

 

Flash-heart, OTOH is all kinds of awesome for totally different reasons...

 

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Judging by what I've seen, PE forums need separate subforum called "Romance and relationships". That romance folk have their fifth topic closed already.

 

But 5 threads isn't enough to warrant a complete category. It would be better to remove the thread limit.

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More forums tend to dilute the substance in many cases. I think there are enough, but I literally don't go out of this one. Paced as it is, I really think if this and the technical board was combined, it wouldn't be detrimental.

 

In short, I don't see the point.

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Judging by what I've seen, PE forums need separate subforum called "Romance and relationships". That romance folk have their fifth topic closed already.

 

But 5 threads isn't enough to warrant a complete category. It would be better to remove the thread limit.

 

Actually, 500 posts are... 30 pages or so? Instead of having an entire book with.... 150 pages it is less intimidating with "Chapters" I guess. Each Chapter is different, even if many of the comments go round and round and round. Same thing I noticed with doing the Collection (check signature for the thread), each of the "Lists" I did in the posts (categorizing per class) is each their own game. Like "Chapters".

 

More forums tend to dilute the substance in many cases. I think there are enough, but I literally don't go out of this one. Paced as it is, I really think if this and the technical board was combined, it wouldn't be detrimental.

 

In short, I don't see the point.

 

The point is only management and ease of use, but it requires passion, serious engagement, ambition and a strong willpower. But the point isn't important for a community like this and we've discussed that it'd be best for a more internal, closed off to a few, premium/beta forum where the purpose would be (if it is) to discuss what should be in the game.

 

Also I'm probably never going to use that invisionfree forum, I just threw it up in a few seconds/moments for inspiration.

Edited by Osvir
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