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General Discussion / Regarding the Character Submission Process
« on: April 11, 2010, 02:21:57 am »
This post is in regards to this thread.
Perhaps I am reading to much into this, but I am finding this process to be borderline absurd.

In my first submission, the only initial critical response I was given was that Aldemar was too powerful. And this was nearly a week after posting. I was then told to update several other things that, while I thought them insignificant, I was more than willing to work around. Yet now I am being told that there is no evidence that he is evil. Why was this not brought up after the initial submission? I did not dumb down the evil between submissions; the morality section remained unchanged, meaning that in that first full week that I am to presume this was being "discussed" no one noticed a problem with his level of evil. Instead extensive detail was given to me that my concept of teaching himself to read is unrealistic.

Which brings me to my second point: if I hadn't brought this up anything about Aldemar's literacy, but still had him come from a farming family it would have been assumed he was literate. Every character on this server is assumed to be literate, and it would almost seem to be the case that one would need to specify if they were not. Yet my biography is still being slowed down because a story of a character teaching himself to read is unrealistic. I should also mention that historically, man intelligent people have taught themselves to read with very simple materials, very smart people. A character with an Intelligence score has roughly an IQ of 160, well beyond genius level. I think it is fair to say that over several years they could accomplish this task. But I suppose in the end it is not my decision.

Finally, it was over a week ago that I updated the submission, with no updates, no mention that it is being reviewed: nothing. Why? Is it so difficult to simply let someone know that something is being discussed? What really makes this so utterly incomprehensible to me is that after all that time, I was informed that the information provided in the original bio was not sufficient, and a full 2 weeks after submitting the character I am finally informed of this. I worry that even if I did continue to update this biography with every request I would not get a character approved until mid-June.

I understand that it is more difficult to get an evil character approved, but taking a few minutes to look through the Character Submissions and Recent Approvals shows that many characters, not just “special” are suffering from approval lag. It's not that some bios just take a while, it really just seems like approvals are moving slowly.

I guess what my real, final criticism is just in regards to this character approval system. It is unfathomable for you to force people to get characters pre-approved if you continue to have such a slow response rate and such high approval standards. It is just not sustainable. It kills any excitement a player has for their new character. On March 26th I was very excited to rejoin my brother in this online world, and I was fantasizing about the various fun activities I could get involved in. I eagerly refreshed the page every 20 minutes. Then a few days passed, and I got less excited. Of course, it was rejuvenated when I was finally informed that about my character, and I was willing to make the changes. But now, 2 weeks out from the excitement, I now could care less about this character, as the process of getting it approved has been such a bore and such a headache that instead of developing a detailed character that was well-thought out and interesting, I'm left submitting drafts of a biography that are being reviewed with higher standards than my political philosophy professors hold. Not too mention, they can get back to me faster.

The final point is that I truly question the usefulness of this system. If you cannot respond in a reasonable time frame or make it relatively easy for characters to be approved, then you are going to kill excitement. I was once a GM myself on this server. I greatly enjoyed working on this server, and I was very much looking forward to coming back with a character that would be a lot of fun for me to play (as a DM in a Pen and Paper game, villains come much more naturally to me than heroes, so I submit evil characters). As a current college student, I know how difficult it is to balance all these things. Which is why I suggest re-evaluating this system, and considering lowering the bar, taking on more character approvers, and have some kind of formalized process. None of this “oh, by the way, your character is not evil enough. Sorry we didn't tell you 2 weeks ago.” You're going to stop new characters from coming in, and you'll kill the excitement of older players or returning players. Something needs to change about this system, otherwise you're going to find that not only will this current version of this server suffer, but you're going to have trouble getting people to pay to wait for 2 weeks, especially if you are trying to capture the roleplayer niche of the MMORPG market. And please don't tell me that the process is so intensive that it cannot be done quicker. 4 years ago when I played here regularly character submissions were approved or updated almost always within 3 days, and never got beyond a week. I remember L giving all the GM's permission to approve characters just because they had been backed up, and this was when the oldest submission was approaching a week. Clearly submissions can be approved quickly, yet somehow this process has deteriorated.

I know that Layonara is better than this, I've seen it. I am sorry if my tone appears sarcastic or angry, I assure my intent is not to hurt any feelings and I really do offer most of this criticism with the hope that the Character Submission process will be re-revaluated.

I'm posting this in both General Discussion and the Character Submission. Consider my submission of Aldemar Roc withdrawn.

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