[GW2] Demand More

What feels like another world ago, I was finding ways to become a blogournalist, especially with ArenaNet. I dutifully followed Regina Buenaobra’s personal Twitter account because at that time I saw digging for any and every crumb of Guild Wars 2 I could find… when few else were. She used to link a lot of personal stuff, mostly feminist blogs, and since I wasn’t finding any Guild Wars 2 info, I usually read what she linked.

A real life friend once maladroitly called me an Inverse Darth Vader. She meant I acted with a heart of gold, but my thoughts were always on the Dark Side. In keeping with this aspect, I read the feminist blogs, and I didn’t understand any of it. I have a wife, mom, and a sister who I respect and treat in kind, and each seemed to want different things from my respect. This all just confused me about woman more. One thing Regina linked did stick, severely.

I wish I could find it now, but one blog entry was a retort to all the negativity against feminist action. Every answer was basically “I demand more.” For example, if the question was “What do you expect with the way television portrays woman?” The answer would be “I demand more.” It really wasn’t an answer so much as a philosophy. The writer didn’t have all the answers, but she had a will and a belief that things could become better.

Martin Kerstein just put up a great article on his team’s beliefs and goals in creating their Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2 communities. There are a lot of questions to the article as to specific actions like forum bannings, moderator slavery, blog resources, and time available for ArenaNet to commit to this monumental task. Yet, that’s not the crux of what Martin is trying to say. The main point is that they demand more, and so should we.

Why should we let people pollute our community? It’s going to happen anyway. No, I say, demand more. The ArenaNet CMs are the point-men and women. They are not the community. We are the community, and we should demand more of ourselves. We should be inclusive, patient, and clear-headed. If you want to result to the lowest common denominator, and just accept that ‘that’s the way of things.’ I won’t be joining you. I’d rather believe we can do better, and act as best I can to that effect.

I’ve seen fantastic communities within games. Some MMOs I’ve played even have had whole servers deemed “better.” I don’t see why the official forums or any Guild Wars 2 community should be any different. Demand more.

–Ravious

31 thoughts on “[GW2] Demand More

  1. pitrelli

    yup just finished reading it, has made me even more excited. ArenaNet are just constantly making the right noises and are really restoring my faith in dev teams :) long may it continue

  2. Dan Hulton

    Agreed 100%.

    I’ve noticed this attitude (to a degree, at least) in the Starcraft community – the players themselves attempt to spread the attitude that being polite to each other is a part of the game. It makes playing Starcraft 2 a much more pleasant experience than playing, say, League of Legends, even though I feel far more confident in my LoL skills than I do of my SC2 skills.

    Interestingly, I found that when I brought that attitude over to LoL, it… worked. Most people who were being jackasses in-game could be brought around in the after-game chat if only they were just treated civilly. It’s even more powerful if you can bring another teammate or two who are dedicated to acting civilly. It can even start a trend for that game, where you compliment your opponents for killing you, or all-chat encouraging teammates for doing stuff that would get them called “OMFG NOOBS” in other games.

    It’d be nice if we could spread that attitude to ALL gaming, but we need strong community leaders for that. In many cases it can be the devs (and it should START with the devs, at the very least), but folks like Day[9] (for a Starcraft example) are invaluable. Devs and publishers need to be aware of folks like that and really contribute as much as they can.

  3. Tr0n

    I agree that we should demand more of ourselves, but that’s because I’m older and perceive things from a different perspective.

    The community in general is a lot more diverse in terms of how old they are, how mature they are, and where they come from (ie. families, culture, behaviour). In that regard, I would not expect any miracles to happen.

    GW2 is, after all, rated PEGI 12+.

  4. Distilled

    Brilliant article Ravious – you’re right, we shouldn’t accept anything which we aren’t happy with as “just the way it is”. If we want better, we should be better.

  5. Jacob

    Well said. I think we can get enough people on the band wagon to really change the entire gaming culture/community to one that is more positive and not so vulgar.

  6. Manda

    Excellent article. Reminds me if a favorite quote by Ghandi; be the change you want to see in the world. Or, in this case, be the change you want to see in the game world.

  7. Verene

    Hear, hear! Why settle when we can have so much more if we just work a little for it?

    Also, the thought-stealing is going on again – I posted earlier today about how it’s down to us, the fans, to make this community awesome. :P

  8. Anon

    ‘All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”

    Pretty much sums it up. It’s easy to stand by and let the small, vile minority taint an otherwise great community.

    When the community takes a stand and demands more of itself, it breeds a culture that everyone can be proud of.

  9. PewPew

    Idyllically yes, Realistically no.

    The critical thinkers and people who challenge the norm to encourage the development of healthy productive traits in communities are constantly facing an uphill battle against people who are taught their entire lives to embrace the lowest common denominator. It is horribly disapointing, and it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try, but damn if it isn’t exhausting and soul crushing at times.

    1. Ravious Post author

      It depends on whose fighting. It’s an uphill battle for “commoners” to teach “commoners,” but when the powers that be set the battlefield, things can be a lot different.

  10. IanoftheSmiths

    Forgive me for being a bit off-topic. I only recently found GW2 at the start of last week and have been clamoring for more info. While I have found a great deal, mostly directed by the sites
    http://www.guildwars2.com/en/ and
    http://www.arena.net/,
    I just can’t seem to find some sort of official forum where I can ask questions directly to ArenaNet or GW2 staff. I’m interested in some of the smaller details, such as the non-combat companion and mount(if there are mounts) systems, the personal bank and even the guild systems, secondary crafting/gathering professions and more. If anyone would know where I may find such info or a forum to ask the questions to and could tell me, I would be very grateful.

      1. IanoftheSmiths

        Thank you. I was aware of the wiki but didn’t think to look it over to much. The guru I had not come across before. I shall make good use of them. ;)

  11. MH (Montassiner)

    I demand more. More honor and more generosity. The best times I’ve had in wow were when we were generous. I farmed the crusader orb enchange (vanilla) for a friend. I was a priest so would never use it, but she was desperate for it. other acts like this, helping all our warlocks get their steeds…you get the point. Generosity creates community – and is something that the creaters of the games cannot provide (though they can restrict it!..please don’t!).

    1. Suarga

      I think ArenaNet would be the last group to restrict that. They still have the humble feeling of a group that is making a game for people who like to have fun. Any attitude is contagious, whether it be good or bad. It just depends on if you are willing to stop the bad in its tracks and start treating people like humans instead of NPCs in a game.

      Hopefully you can treat NPCs nicely too, though.

  12. Timewarp

    Thank you Ravious, that was a great read. I have high expectations that the official forum will be a positive force for the community. ArenaNet stepping up to take the reigns (finally), is a smart move. GW2 will swell the community, and it will need proper support and guidance if it is to flourish. Hopefully the current community pillars (fansites, and fans alike), will step up to the task and join ArenaNet instead of fighting them.

  13. Juno

    I too desire an inclusive atmosphere that is helpful, friendly, and respectful. I desire this in all aspects of life, not just in MMOs.

    There will always be members of a community (‘members’ is important) that do not adhere to this standard. They will be outwardly rude, disrespectful, and unfriendly to other elements in the community. How do you handle these members without yourself violating your own higher standard? (rhetorical)

    Keep in mind that many people game to escape — not to be facilitators of social justice in a virtual world.

  14. C.P.

    Go Ravious!
    Stonking post! Well said, rah rah rah, and lets have more of this attitude – as the comments show a lotta people feeeel the way yoo doo, especially me! oops roast charring – Regs Avatarsofsteel

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  16. ilr

    Juno makes a good point, escapism drives irresponsibility. This is where I feel Gw1Guru failed. If we let Anet’s official forum turn into the same overly structured antagonism, then we will not have that Inclusive community. Inclusiveness & Maturity is everything. Even if Martin himself doesn’t always embody it, he did spend some time in City of Heroes which was one of the most mature communities in the industry so he knows what it should look like when it’s done right. For that, we can place confidence in him as “Head Banninator” of the Officials.

    That said, It’s difficult to balance Meritocracy with Inclusiveness. The official Wikis never censored us and Anet always encouraged us to moderate ourselves instead and that was great… But it as a community tool, it failed almost entirely when it came to constructive discussions. It’s like trying to make due with a Hammer when you really needed a Wrench. Official forums alone won’t solve that either which makes the other avenues they made hints towards all the more necessary. I’ll be looking forward to those “community buttresses”, especially if one of them is an Art Gallery. Fan art did WONDERS for TeamFortress and a few other Non-subscription games…

    Also: I know it wasn’t mentioned, but one thing I feel needs to be addressed: This idea that “only baddies” go out of their way to shout at the Devs with the biggest megaphone they can find. I find that idea held too often by folks who already had that “perk” & feel only THEY should have the exclusive megaphone to the Devs and it’s completely hypocritical. The Devs do not need to be “protected from the hoi polloi” …More often than not, when I’m just trying to casually discuss (and direct focus) within the community, Anet staff can be seen “Dropping Eves” (yes quest reference) anyway. Good for them… at the end of the day they’re just gamers like us and should be free to comment however they choose AND it’s up to the rest of us to direct that criticism they’re facing maturely WITHOUT acting like Fanboys who only plant seeds of polarization.

    1. Ravious Post author

      Yes, CoH and pre-F2P LOTRO are great examples of a strong, inclusive community. I say pre-F2P LOTRO because I don’t know how/if anything changed since F2P.

  17. InstaBayne

    Great read. I love that many are showing support in building a great community.

    Oh, and I really liked the part about being an “Inverse Darth Vader.” Something I could relate to, haha.

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