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Fallen London Patch Notes Messages in this topic - RSS

Dudebro Pyro
Dudebro Pyro
Posts: 721

7 days ago
Well, that's an interesting development. I was sceptical for a while of the seeming push towards reddit, but at least there you don't need to be logged in to an account to read things. Discord is a mess, and now apparently official content can't even be accessed at all without having to sign up - which, like others, I refuse to do for multiple reasons. (Honestly, if at least it was IRC, it would be bearable since at least that doesn't require you to sign up with an account, agree to T&Cs, etc. Still, for patch notes of all things, I fail to comprehend how a "chat message" model was deemed better than a "forum post" model.)

Many thanks to Azothi for the repost. I do find it rather ridiculous that users of FBG's official discussion platform have to resort to relying on fellow memebers copy-pasting things around to be able to read official announcements.

Siankan wrote:

This has made me wonder, somewhat to my surprise, whether I would stay in the Neath at that point. I love the game and still have things to do, but let's be honest: the Cider grind isn't terribly exciting on its own. The forum, with all its roleplay and debate and general friendliness, has been a chief force in keeping me engaged and involved in the Neath. The discordance that is Discord... isn't going to do it for me.

Sums up my feelings pretty well. Even though I may not have been the most active on the forums, and didn't participate in e.g. RP etc., I still lurked around and knowing the community made the game feel a lot more alive. I probably wouldn't still be here if there wasn't regular discussion of the game happening around the forums.

--
Dudebro Pyro, eccentric scholar

Spare Starveling Kitties always welcome. I collect them.
For that matter, send me your unwanted cat boxes too.
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c-schroed
c-schroed
Posts: 13

7 days ago
Dudebro Pyro wrote:
Discord is a mess, and now apparently official content can't even be accessed at all without having to sign up - which, like others, I refuse to do for multiple reasons.



I definitely agree with the first part, it is quite a mess there. However, it is not neccessary to sign up. You just need to pick a username for your session, and yes, afterwards you will be asked for an E-Mail address and password - but if you click somewhere outside of this dialogue box, it will go away, and you can read the announcements without having made an account. You can't comment without an account, though.

So, although I too would prefer the announcements to be made here in the forums, at least this seems to be pretty fair to me.



edited by c-schroed on 12/2/2019 (just corrected a spelling error)
edited by c-schroed on 12/2/2019

--
Cattus Schroedingeris, scientist and author, at your service!

Kitty Schroedingeris, his Cousin, an author who is always plotting something.

"Always look to love. Always."
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Jolanda Swan
Jolanda Swan
Posts: 1587

7 days ago
Is it though? If you want to read the announcement and not comment, discuss, querry etc you are just reading the blog.

--
Lover of all things beautiful, secret admirer of ugly truths, fond of the Parabola Sun... and always delighted to role play.
http://fallenlondon.com/profile/Jolanda%20Swan
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c-schroed
c-schroed
Posts: 13

7 days ago
Jolanda Swan wrote:
Is it though? If you want to read the announcement and not comment, discuss, querry etc you are just reading the blog.



I mean, there are announcements in the Discord channel that are not in the Failbetter blog. But maybe this is just another problem.

--
Cattus Schroedingeris, scientist and author, at your service!

Kitty Schroedingeris, his Cousin, an author who is always plotting something.

"Always look to love. Always."
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PSGarak
PSGarak
Posts: 687

7 days ago
I am also going to voice my discontent with the current state of the forums, community, and communication. I'm going to consolidate my thoughts into a few separate chunks, for the sake of my criticism being constructive.

  • Communication that is meant to be openly available should be posted on a venue that is openly available. Something like patch notes should not be restricted to a platform like Discord, which requires another sign-up, and I think maybe an app install as well. It's ok for some discussion to be gated or not widely broadcast, but announcements like seasonal events, upcoming content changes, and patch notes really need to be at least as available as the game itself. (I can't comment on Discord itself because I haven't used it.)
  • I would like more clarity from FBG on what are the "preferred" communication channels. There used to be a lot of direct engagement on the Forums, then for a while it felt like there wasn't. I understand that some changes in direction were probably reactionary or organic, and thinking about the forest from the trees is harder when the comms person is out (<3 Hannah, hope the injury is getting better). While I would not like to see an official announcement "The forums are dead, long live Discord!" having that be actually announced would be better than just seeing forum involvement taper off and wondering where the party is.
  • I think it would be better to have fewer official channels rather than more. I feel like the community is currently being fractured between different platforms (forums, reddit, discord), and some of those sub-communities are not large enough to sustain themselves. It also just naturally means that discussions won't have as many participants as they could. (Obviously there's nothing FBG could or should to to prevent unofficial platforms, which reddit might be one.)
  • All else being equal, I think that FBG would be doing a better service to its players to use its own platforms (Blog for announcements, forums for discussion) rather than relying on third-party platforms (reddit, discord, twitter, facebook). A third-party platform means that as a player, I have to have a relationship with some other company in order to have a relationship with FBG. I don't always want to do that, and I hear a lot of other players saying they don't want to do that either. It also puts both FBG and players at the mercy of that platforms content and moderation policies, which can also have downsides. (I understand that it is not always equal. E.g. spam goes up on the forums outside of FBG's working hours, and no one's around to deal with it. Managing your own platform is a headache. I'm just trying to tell you, as a player, what the impacts are to me.)

I like Fallen London, and I like FBG, and I want y'all to succeed. I'm not writing this all down to vent, I'm doing it because I know you listen to players and I think it's worth my time to give you this feedback. I hope that community engagement is a point of emphasis for FBG in 2020.

--
http://fallenlondon.com/Profile/PSGarak
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c-schroed
c-schroed
Posts: 13

7 days ago
PSGarak wrote:
  • All else being equal, I think that FBG would be doing a better service to its players to use its own platforms (Blog for announcements, forums for discussion) rather than relying on third-party platforms (reddit, discord, twitter, facebook). A third-party platform means that as a player, I have to have a relationship with some other company in order to have a relationship with FBG. I don't always want to do that, and I hear a lot of other players saying they don't want to do that either. It also puts both FBG and players at the mercy of that platforms content and moderation policies, which can also have downsides. (I understand that it is not always equal. E.g. spam goes up on the forums outside of FBG's working hours, and no one's around to deal with it. Managing your own platform is a headache. I'm just trying to tell you, as a player, what the impacts are to me.)

I absolutely agree with that! Personally, I think Discord and Reddit are great additional channels (although I myself don't use either of them regularly), and FBG does these communities an excellent service by supporting them. But I still see their blog and forums as the first and foremost source of game-related information.

And although Discord can be read without signing up, I would clearly prefer to get my information from the forums and/or the blog, as previously.

--
Cattus Schroedingeris, scientist and author, at your service!

Kitty Schroedingeris, his Cousin, an author who is always plotting something.

"Always look to love. Always."
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Dudebro Pyro
Dudebro Pyro
Posts: 721

7 days ago
c-schroed wrote:
you can read the announcements without having made an account.

Oh, that's slightly better than I expected. Good to know! Of course this doesn't fix the rest of the issues, but at least I have the option to look from afar at what's going on there.

PSGarak wrote:
A third-party platform means that as a player, I have to have a relationship with some other company in order to have a relationship with FBG. I don't always want to do that, and I hear a lot of other players saying they don't want to do that either.

First of all, let me say that you bring up some fantastic points and I agree with everything you've said. (It's also made me realise that my own tone was perhaps rather acerbic - so I'll take this as an opportunity to stress that, indeed, I am writing here in the hopes that knowing the opinion of the players will be helpful to FBG and inform their decisions, rather than to vent or idly rant.)
I want to highlight the particular point you quoted as what might be the core of the issue - at least for me personally. There's certainly place for a debate on the merits of a chat platform as opposed to a forum (or forum-like) platform, but my personal biggest pain point here is that unless I start using a product made by a completely different company with its own policies, terms, business practices, and so on, I'll end up being left out of the majority of community involvement. And it's already been highlighted above how playing in a vacuum can completely ruin the fun, particularly for end-game players.

And certainly, nowadays there are many communities, projects, etc. which have e.g. a Discord as their sole mean of communication or organisation. I am not part of any of those - perhaps not entirely by sheer concidence, I should say. I'm an EF in Fallen London, not any other game. FBG has always catered to a unique playerbase, not just due to the unique gameplay but also due to their attitude as a company, their business practices, their communication and policies. For instance, FL has one of the most non-predatory monetisation schemes I've seen in an F2P game (there exists one other game in which I've spent real money for virtual perks and items, and I'd played that one for some 1,600 hours before spending my first pence). It would really be a shame if the business decision was taken now to follow the latest trends and abandon the one-of-a-kind platform and community that has been built up over the course of years.

--
Dudebro Pyro, eccentric scholar

Spare Starveling Kitties always welcome. I collect them.
For that matter, send me your unwanted cat boxes too.
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Optimatum
Optimatum
Posts: 3551

7 days ago
On a related note, we got a teaser on the discord of the upcoming merchandise: Fallen London playing cards, featuring the Topsy King as the King of Bats!

--
Optimatum, a ruthless and merciful gentleman. No plant battles, Affluent Photographer requests, or healing offers; all other social actions welcome.

Want a sip of Cider? Just say hi! Christmas Cards appreciated though, especially the Fogscape with Tentacles.

PM me for information enigmatic or Fated. Though the forum please, not FL itself.
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phryne
phryne
Posts: 1256

7 days ago
Optimatum wrote:
On a related note, we got a teaser on the discord of the upcoming merchandise: Fallen London playing cards, featuring the Topsy King as the King of Bats!

I assume the four suits will be Bats, Cats, Hats and Rats? smile

--
Exceptional Stories, sorted by Season and by writerFavours & Renown GuideDestiny Guide
Go play StoryNexus games - while you still can!
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Azothi
Azothi
Posts: 541

7 days ago
phryne wrote:
Optimatum wrote:
On a related note, we got a teaser on the discord of the upcoming merchandise: Fallen London playing cards, featuring the Topsy King as the King of Bats!

I assume the four suits will be Bats, Cats, Hats and Rats? smile
Yep.

They will also be featuring the Traitor Empress - I mean, Her Enduring Majesty - and each of the face cards will be a named character.

--
Azoth I, the Amaranthine Wanderer - Midnighter - A Paramount Presence (not currently accepting new Proteges)
Away to where the Chain cannot bind us.
Hesperidean.
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Siankan
Siankan
Posts: 935

7 days ago
Well, we all know who the Queen of Cats will be. Also, someone please tell me the Queen of Bats is Mme Shoshana.

--
Prof. Sian Kan, at your service.
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Winthropx
Winthropx
Posts: 92

6 days ago
I’ve come to rely on the forums for my questions and connections for Fallen London. I don’t want to create another account to follow information about. I recently joined Reddit, and I really don’t feel like joining another platform. Fallen London is also the only game I’ve spent real money on and have a continuing subscription with. The writing and the community on the forums are what drew me to that decision. I don’t want the community to be spread across more platforms.

--
Bishop Winthrop, a kind-hearted soul
A Paramount Presence
I accept all social actions
His Appearance
http://community.failbettergames.com/topic9363-your-characters-appearances.aspx?messageid=229809&Page=10#post#post229809
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Hannah Flynn
Hannah Flynn
Administrator
Posts: 425

6 days ago
We are indeed hoping to do this. Jitbit, umm... works, but it's not the best forum software out there, and I think we'd also prefer something that holds up a little better. When we have an idea of when and how we'll proceed with a revamp, we'll let you know.

It's worth mentioning that we only have one staff member on comms (me!), so it's hard for us to do a lot of things at once. It's also a tricky thing to try and reach new players while maintaining ongoing community spaces. You may have noticed that we've wound down our Facebook pages, and we post less on the Echo Bazaar twitter too. It is a balance, but I appreciate your feedback about patch notes, especially the point about needing an account or a work-around to even see them over there.

Discord is its own whole thing, with lots of hard thought and reasoning behind us starting a server of our own. Partly it will enable us to use its Verified channel features, like selling our games to new players, and running betas. I'm hopeful that it's going to be worth the effort, because we have really limited resources for growing our audience.

I suggest that I add a pinned thread for Fallen London patch notes, and I'll cross-post them when I can. That might sometimes be a while after they go up on Discord, depending on what else I have going that day. If you notice there are patch notes which haven't been shared here, it'd be a great help if you'd post them. How does that sound?

PS I'm glad you're excited about the playing cards! I am too! Big Grin


--
Wields the news canon, aboard the hype train.
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Jolanda Swan
Jolanda Swan
Posts: 1587

6 days ago
I'm sorry but I don't understand. You feel we need a better forum, so until then the old one is more or less abandoned even though the player base uses it? It's loaded with guides and years of lore speculation available to everyone.

As someone already said, for long-term players the forums are what keeps them tethered to the game. And Discord might attract new players (which of course is necessary for a company) but for many of those already playing, it's unusable. Being forced to use this mess to connect to the game is... Not nice. I don't mind not getting Twitter or blog posts, but having to sit through Discord to get necessary news for the game (patch notes, info for upcoming events etc) is slowly but certainly pushing me away from Fallen London.
Apologies if the tone sounds combative. I love the world you create and the community, which is why this feels like a loss.

--
Lover of all things beautiful, secret admirer of ugly truths, fond of the Parabola Sun... and always delighted to role play.
http://fallenlondon.com/profile/Jolanda%20Swan
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xKiv
xKiv
Posts: 831

6 days ago
Hannah Flynn wrote:
It's worth mentioning that we only have one staff member on comms (me!), s


Oh, is that why the facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/fallenlondon /) has not been updated since ... march?

--
https://www.fallenlondon.storynexus.com/Profile/xKiv - a witchful, percussive, dangermous and shadowry scholar of coexplodence, hopsidirean, and walker of fallen kitties.
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Siankan
Siankan
Posts: 935

6 days ago
Hannah Flynn wrote:
I suggest that I add a pinned thread for Fallen London patch notes, and I'll cross-post them when I can. That might sometimes be a while after they go up on Discord, depending on what else I have going that day. If you notice there are patch notes which haven't been shared here, it'd be a great help if you'd post them. How does that sound?

I appreciate this, and for patch notes it will probably do just fine. However, as community feedback has shown, this is connected to rather larger issues than patch notes. Thus I think, at this point, it might be valuable to summarize the general opinion of the forum community. (Let me first give the necessary caveat that this community is naturally less excited by Discord and similar options, on the grounds that, if we weren't, we would be over there already.)

1. We all love Fallen London, Failbetter, and the now-decade-old community of exceptionally friendly strangers that it has fostered. The old hands among us (do I count yet? not sure) have not only flipped thousands of cards, participated in dozens of events, and argued vociferously over solar politics and mayoral candidates, but have submitted bug reports, hunted down typos, and otherwise actively attempted to make both the game and the community better. London is home.

2. While we understand Failbetter's need to maintain a presence on various platforms, and that those needs shift over time, we feel a strong need for a guaranteed central clearing-house for announcements and information. We want to know that we can get all the important information in a central source and not have to scrounge different platforms and compare notes with friends in order to actually know what's going on. We want to both be and feel connected.

3. We also feel (some of us very strongly) that this central clearing-house should not be mediated by a third party, which has its own EULA and can impose its own conditions at will.

4. There is a general dislike among us of the Discord platform particularly, at least as an information clearing-house. Leaving off speculation that it is, in fact, a vehicle of the Liberation of Night, Discord is also difficult to navigate and rather unsuited for the great work of organizing and maintaining a body of literature on the game. If Failbetter thinks a presence on Discord will help them grow new players, more power to them--but that doesn't make it effective as a forum replacement.

5. We also desire a place for the community to, well, be a community, a place for serious discussions or even serious roleplay, where we can pound out thousand-word contemplations at need, where we can go back and see exactly who said what about which mayoral candidate three years ago. Fallen London, particularly, attracts thinkers and speculators, people who want something more than disposable communication. The game itself is, in a sense, at odds with the Age of Snapchat. Discord... is not.

Let me add as a personal observation that Discord works best for the sort of thing that works well on Twitch. If Failbetter's primary communications about Sunless Skies were all on Discord, I don't think anyone would complain; it's not like the Sunless Skies sub-forum is roaring hot anyway. However, Fallen London is not, and can never be, that sort of thing. It needs a different sort of space to breathe in.

6. The method of the change has exacerbated the problem. If, when the FB Discord server launched, the announcement had said that Discord was intended to become FB's primary presence on the internet and that future communications would originate there, well, there may have been Rubberies protesting in the streets, but at least we'd know the score. Instead, there has been a gradual, unannounced shift, which has led to the forum community being progressively confused, concerned, and alienated. It is rather like having a regular dinner with friends, but the friend in charge starts changing the location without telling you, and finally stops inviting you altogether, without ever explaining what's going on. This handling is not the best way to guarantee a positive reception.

7. That said, let us acknowledge what we all know: "Jitbit, umm... works." (Excepting the search function, of course; that was designed in the rose-scented pits of Hell.) It's not an ideal forum solution, and I for one am rather heartened that Failbetter's looking at other options. That presents its own challenges, of course, but sufficient for the day is the complaining thereof.

8. We can also acknowledge that Hannah is, in fact, one woman, howeverso amazingly talented, and quite possibly one without even a Peculiar Enhancement to help things along. There's only so much that one person can do (particularly if that person is determined to maintain sanity), and that increasing Failbetter's presence in one area necessitates taking that presence from other places. That's perfectly fair. Our concern is simply that the forum (and forum-goers with it) has lost too much to the effort to expand Failbetter's internet horizons.


It has, frankly, been an odd roller-coaster this year. At the election, most of us were in the dark, wondering why we weren't hearing anything about the candidates, confused when others told us that the information was being posted, but not here. As the year went on similar situations deepened this confusion into suspicion. Then Hallowmas came, with the quick responses from Surface London and the fan art comments, and there was a collective sigh of relief. Ah, we thought, the gods haven't abandoned us. They are listening. In that atmosphere, the announcements we've been discussing were felt particularly hard. It rather feels like the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark: we've been crated up and put in a warehouse, and are mostly waiting for the end credits to roll.

Now, I am adamantly certain that was not intended by anyone in Surface London. I've never had an interaction with anyone in Failbetter that has been less than delightful. Nevertheless, we are here. How do we leave? Well, the first thing I think we need is a clear statement from FB about its media plans, about exactly what role it sees the forums and Discord and Facebook and the blog and all of its other outlets playing going forward. If those plans took our concerns into account, that'd be lovely. Second, if they change in the future, we'd really love to hear up front how they're changing and what to expect. I'm not looking for perfection here, because we all know these things take on lives and directions of their own. However, I'd dearly love to be kept in the loop. (That is, in the end, what all of this is about.)
edited by Siankan on 12/3/2019

--
Prof. Sian Kan, at your service.
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Jolanda Swan
Jolanda Swan
Posts: 1587

6 days ago
Thank you Sian Kan. That sums it up.

--
Lover of all things beautiful, secret admirer of ugly truths, fond of the Parabola Sun... and always delighted to role play.
http://fallenlondon.com/profile/Jolanda%20Swan
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Jeremiah Oathes
Jeremiah Oathes
Posts: 73

6 days ago
Yes, thank you very much!

I may be posting only so much in the forums, but I read them very regularly.

For me too the forums are the life line that keeps me connected to the game. I am mostly grinding at the moment and have a huge backlog of ES to play. But reading the forums, seeing old and new faces, gets me in the mood for coming back every so often.

Anyways, thank you everyone for making this place so cozy. I really like being here, almost as much as playing the game itself.

--
Dr Jeremiah Oathes - Natural Philosopher, Alchemist and Anatomist (part-time). Occasionally in Service to the Crown and the Bazaar. Would like to dissect a Master (for science and mad laughter).
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phryne
phryne
Posts: 1256

5 days ago
Basically agree with everything Sian Kan said, especially statement No. 5. Thank you!

--
Exceptional Stories, sorted by Season and by writerFavours & Renown GuideDestiny Guide
Go play StoryNexus games - while you still can!
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silurica
silurica
Posts: 155

5 days ago
I've been following this thread quietly, but I won't lie, I feel there is a degree of unnecessary negativity toward Discord and/or its community here. Yes, Discord's format isn't for everyone. Yes, even I still prefer forum format to some degree, even if I'm not terribly active here (The Bazaar is the only subforum I frequent semi-regularly). Yes, perhaps all these matters about patch notes and update could've been done better.

Siankan wrote:
5. We also desire a place for the community to, well, be a community, a place for serious discussions or even serious roleplay, where we can pound out thousand-word contemplations at need, where we can go back and see exactly who said what about which mayoral candidate three years ago. Fallen London, particularly, attracts thinkers and speculators, people who want something more than disposable communication. The game itself is, in a sense, at odds with the Age of Snapchat. Discord... is not.


However, seeing posts like this really disheartens me. I've had a good time discussing the world and lore of Fallen London and roleplaying my characters in Discord, doing so with many people. These posts read like it's impossible to have ~serious~ conversation in Discord, so much that instead they make me wonder, "Have you really given Discord a chance...?"

--
Meika Osborne, the Reckless Researcher
Leonard West, the Scarlet Informant
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