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GFL and a "Mentality of Stagnation"

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Posted  Edited by Salad - Edit Reason: added a bit about horde to the gmod section

I think this is a relatively well worded post, so good work on that! I agree that we've kind of tapered at this point, however this is not due to lack of trying, and GFL goes through it's waves of growth and stagnation through it's various divisions and teams, and it's pretty normal, as jarring as it may seem. There are constantly plans in the works, I speak for that especially in terms of GMod and CS:GO, as there are some behind the scenes projects being actively worked on for those two, as well as some concepts and future plans for TF2 and Physion. We don't have as many available staff to work on as many projects as we would like, and that problem is slowly but surely being addressed as much as we can.

To provide some insight on my day-to-day GFL priorities as of late as Director of Divisions because I assume it's not apparent as most of it is behind the scenes and unfinished. I have been focusing heavily on GMod lately as it is one of our communities lacking the most staff. This is due in part to the declining nature of the game itself, as well as our more seasoned staff moving on from the community as a whole. Currently our TTT Vanilla server as well as our Prophunt server are lacking the most in terms of staff. I am actively working on solutions to the issues plaguing these servers, but finding the right people who are interested in such a task is not as easy as it may seem. Staff are the driving force behind a server's success, and without dedicated staff to help build up a server (From the technical side as well as building the playerbase) it becomes increasingly hard to have thriving servers. Horde has seen some early success with it's staff team and players, which has been great to see, and I hope it continues.

As for CS:GO, before I get into it I would like to correct a point made in Dragoons initial post. The majority of our CS:GO division are skill based competitive gamemodes (Surf, KZ, and Bhop). Each of the servers for those gamemodes are based on skill level, for example: KZ Climb #1 is made for beginners, while KZ Climb #2 is designed for the more skilled players, and this trend applies to all of Surf as well as Bhop. The majority of those servers cater to a specific audience, that being a smaller one, but a dedicated playerbase nonetheless. This is intentional and is no way a means of saying that those servers are inactive. Just wanted to clarify that before I get into more about CS:GO's current status, since Dragoon noted he wasn't as familiar with the division.
@Infra has been killing it as of late for CS:GO. Surf has only been growing, and is currently at 7 servers. Surf's growth is proven especially with the recent development and release of private servers, as well as our upcoming Surf tournament that at the time of writing this post is up to over $2.2k in community donations to the prize pool. Infra has plans for the rest of the division, with servers such as our Bhop servers, with some changes possibly coming to that in the coming weeks and months. As for ZE, not much needs to be said, Snowy and Vauff are killing it as always.

On to TF2, we currently have some successful servers as Dragoon mentioned, as well as a few that do not do as well. I have been approached with some intriguing projects for TF2 that I hope to touch base with the Division Leaders ( @Hamtaro and @Cuasi) on soon, and maybe we can see a bit of growth with those as well.

 

Finally, CS:S has been on a decline for quite some time, with virtually no room for further growth, and we are currently less focused on expanding, and more so focused on maintaining what we have until an opportunity brings itself about. Our most popular server, Bhop, is a staple of the CSS community and we have no intentions of doing anything to change that.
 

Physion has plans in the works as well, however due to limited availability of those necessary to finish the projects, it is on hold and the servers maintain their normal popularity, but once we introduce those changes, the community will only grow.

 

That's what is going on/what is planned for the current GFL Divisions as of now, but like I mentioned previously, my main issue across many of these areas is limited staff available for projects, and limited candidates for staff as a whole, SO.......
If you'd be interested in helping out, lending a hand, sending me some ideas, whatever it may be, feel free to shoot me a message on Discord (Salad#6564). 
This goes for anyone, so please feel more than welcome to hit me up!


this is my second mega post within a few days, and i just finished working on some uni assignments so once again: sorry if its unintelligible, if you have questions feel free to ask!

Edited by Salad
added a bit about horde to the gmod section

Director of Divisions and Physion Unturned Division Leader

 

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xQc on GFL Surf 7/16/22

 

 

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Nicely worded and it's always great to self-check every once in a while!  I think a lot of people ask this question over the years even well-respected and long-time members or staff will ask this, and I suppose one day somebody is going to be right, but I don't think that day is anytime soon.

 

I think what we're seeing here does look like a usual cycle, and I've seen it like this for over 8 years now.  Communities I've been a part of for longer and one of them for over 15 years people will ask the same question and have similar cycles.  Funny enough: The ones that don't ask... they're the ones that didn't make it, and so I think this is very healthy for our community.  Thanks for asking 😉


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Posted  Edited by Dragoon

I always intended to split this post into two halves. There hasn't really been that many responses yet, so.. I'm going to cut the first half of this somewhat early while I move onto the second part. To everyone above that's heard me out as well as everyone below who will be hearing me out, I appreciate it.

 

Firstly, I wanted to address the problem that I had seen. This has been done, and there have been a couple of responses to it, which I'm thankful for (Especially for being corrected about CS:GO). The second part is something different. I want to discuss some of my own possible solutions while expanding more on my original meaning and addressing some of what's been said. When I think about it, I can't say that there isn't a point to be made with what's already been posted. There will be times when activity falls to a lower degree of some places. However... While there is an effort being made, I am not sure if there are some who believe that it is enough. I've had a few people message me about my original post, so I'd like to partially try and speak some of the input that I've received from other people while also including some of my own experiences.

When I talk about a mentality, I'd like to clarify that this doesn't mean that people are doing nothing. This is simply not the case. To begin, I'll take a sample quote from Salad's post.

On 6/24/2022 at 4:58 PM, Salad said:

Staff are the driving force behind a server's success, and without dedicated staff to help build up a server (From the technical side as well as building the playerbase) it becomes increasingly hard to have thriving servers.

I only believe that this statement was partially correct. While staff members are what help along the way, I think that it takes someone who is willing to have above average activity. Coincidentally, the most successful ones tend to be staff members, since they happen to be some of the most dedicated members of a community while being able to enforce the rules. But if there's a new or old server that gets started and/or restarted without someone who can set up the first checkpoint, would the server really be successful? When it comes to Horde, that's been a great example of activity for quite some time. People here from GFL have joined the server, and new people have occasionally been joining because they see players on the server.

I have had my own experience in building up a playerbase from nearly nothing, and I still continue this even as I write this post. From this experience, I've AFK'd on a server, I payed attention to when the rules were broken, and I made an effort to make minor improvements to the experience of the common player. Though they sometimes do come along, you don't always see these types of people on every server. It's much harder for someone to create a successful server by themselves. However, I think that this is where some people can get help from other leaders in the community, such as yourself or their Division Leader(s).

 

Salad, there's no doubt that you're active in the community and that you're willing to offer help to anyone who'd like it. I know that activity can vary with some of the people who have leadership roles in a division, but I believe that there are ways that they can help, too. If it's hard to find those types of people who you need to be active, I feel that that there are other options to go with. These next examples aren't meant to be definite routes to take, nor would they be something that could end up working out. However, giving some input like this to find out what can work for everyone is always worth a shot as long as it's done in an honest manner. For example, maybe you could attempt to recruit people in GFL to see if there's anyone who'd be willing to play on some less active servers such as Prop Hunt or TTT Vanilla from time to time. Back when a couple of servers in GMod were in danger of being shut down in 2020, there was some outside help that they received in order to boost them back to levels that were viewed as good. These little methods of outside such as casually playing would start off as small, but it'd be something that everyone could have fun with. On one of those days, maybe players could feel encouraged to join when they see a server with some activity on it, and things may start to blossom from there. Of course, there are multiple options besides this, too. Things such as dynamic slots or staying AFK could be temporary ways to artificially increase the server population, though they wouldn't be permanent solutions.

When I come back to the mentality, I believe that we're doing a sufficient job of fostering servers that are already popular, and that's in no small part due to the normal players and staff teams across these servers. Despite this, we do not always have the best route when it comes to expansion. While I believe that TF2's Rotation server is an absolutely fantastic idea, it has not gone as well as we hoped because we didn't have a major start with people who wanted to consistently join the server. Sadly, we haven't yet had a major focus within the division to improve the quality of players on the server and give it a reset. I'm personally a bit unsure if some of those aforementioned future plans would end up the same way or not, and because I've seen some continued stagnation even with our past expansions in the division, that's something which has definitely contributed to this thread. Though it may not be the case for an excellent startup such as Horde, I am definitely concerned for that part of the community.

To close this off, I'd like to start forging a change in this regard. For me, when it comes to starting a new server, I'd want to see what people like about it, give a helping hand in the form of dedicated staff members who will help along the way, and to consistently improve its quality with the help of everyone on the server. If anyone here has any other thoughts, then please feel free to talk about it. Apologies for the long length, and thanks for reading.

Edited by Dragoon

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Posted  Edited by kami_

Soo... I'm sort of confused on the purpose of your post! Are you saying that the people behind the scenes of GFL aren't doing anything to negate what you declare stagnant?

I won't mention the things going on with Surf, as it's the main counterargument here. There are a lot of changes underway that you're unaware of, (Me too, of course.) not just in the CS:GO Division. It all just feels invalidating to people working very hard. Servers will have spikes of inactivity, there will be times of the day where player count is low, this is normal. 

What more would you do that other highly integrated members of the community are not doing?

TL;DR - I agree with @Liloz01

Edited by kami_

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Posted  Edited by Dragoon

I've definitely used a lot of overexaggerated language on both of my posts. At the time, I thought that it'd create a sense of urgency, but I now see that it came off as worse. That is completely my fault, and there's no doubt about that. I'm sorry for causing that. As for clarifying my language... Yes, there is nothing that really needs to happen, but it'd be nice if "something" could happen. I'd want everyone no matter if they're a staff member or not to feel like they can be motivated by things like this so that someone feels inclined to make a little push. Even though there's a lot of work that members can do themselves to put into helping out servers (Just as @Liloz01 says), I mainly bring up the point of higher-ups because a lot of people don't know exactly what goes on behind the scenes, though it is 100% more expansive than a lot of us can imagine. Looking at Salad's post with the updates, it's a good glimpse into what we can expect.

 

One thing that I mentioned in a previous post was I'm motivated by TF2. When it comes to this area, I view stagnancy to be more around the new servers compared to the two "stagnant" ones mentioned before in GMod that sadly fell over time. I believe that there's a really good market for expansion there, but it's something that I do not know would have been in the works without me initially pressing for it to a couple of people. I'm unfamiliar with CS:GO and CS:S, so I am definitely unaware about most of what goes on besides what I said it looks like from the outside. However, one thing that I'm aware of is that there's not really any "stagnancy" within CS:GO's Surf community. Thanks to being made aware of it, I understand that higher servers in Surf are based by skill level, which is an explanation beyond fair to explain why there are lower counts. The exact same is said of KZ Climb and BHop's higher tier servers. I certainly can't say that an excellent job isn't being done there.

If there's one thing I could at least change about GMod and TF2, it'd be interaction. Though I am not quite fully sure about the responsibilities that DL's have, I don't feel like something such as the monthly status we get during each Council meeting is enough specifically for these two divisions is enough for them. Talking about the present is always going to be customary, but maybe we should also hear about some plans in the future, too. An option like this can solidify people's hopes. I'll use GMod as an example. When it comes to new servers, a lot of the information feels really secretive until it's about to be released. There can obviously be a closed testing session for a server, but having something like a public beta can get more people interested. Sometime afterwards, there might be two or three days where people can join the server via a password and then there'd be play session organized before the server's launch. If people like the style, then more people may join at launch. However, if it's more public, not only are you going to get more people to talk about it, but you're also going to get even more feedback about how the server can be improved before launch so that it can end up well and bring new people in. 

Early in this post, I mentioned "something". This something can be multiple things. For instance, I think that we should encourage someone by default to explore GFL, even if it's in a little way. A small something that might help in a place like TF2 where not everyone knows about our other servers could be making the role menu in the Discord an opt-out section. While even a Member can talk with people in the Discord and encouraging them to join a server, people would feel more motivated if there's some work going on to push it from staff members. I know that there are certainly going to be exceptions, but a lot of people who are normal members of the community will not be the same people who first join to make that effort. Though I have mainly implored staff to take that first step to encourage people, which is not something that any member of our staff needs to be responsible for (Nor is being required to do anything outlined in these posts, for that matter), it's important to take actions that will give a reason for joining our servers to normal players outside of the community. I guess that if there's anything I myself would like to say the most with this thread, it's that if there is any casual GFL Member regardless of position who is reading this and willingly wishes to be active whilst helping GFL grow at the same time, then you should take that first step and start from there. 

Edited by Dragoon

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9 hours ago, Dragoon said:

Though I have mainly implored staff to take that first step to encourage people, which is not something that any member of our staff needs to be responsible for (Nor is being required to do anything outlined in these posts, for that matter), it's important to take actions that will give a reason for joining our servers to normal players outside of the community. I guess that if there's anything I myself would like to say the most with this thread, it's that if there is any casual GFL Member regardless of position who is reading this and willingly wishes to be active whilst helping GFL grow at the same time, then you should take that first step and start from there. 

 


I do heavily agree with this portion of your text. I find the mentality of people  never branching out problematic, specifically on Gmod TTT with people never  exploring other communities. I also do know other GFL TTT competitors, that play in our servers to analyze our strenghts and weaknesses. In some cases, those competitors become more succesful due to their findings.

(I am not counting Anarchy as I do not know much of TTT2 and peoples behaviours there).


I also do think that getting players to pop servers would sound good, as it has worked with TTT Rotation in the past. But I think for it to be used more effectively, there needs to be a balance of server content, environment , and a reason to keep players playing. 

For example, if TTT Vanilla had people "popping" it everyday, and each week the server gained two new players. How would those new players keep playing? Sure, they might enjoy the environment of the regulars, but what if the content is boring? Are the rules a reason why we can't maintain new players? Why do our regulars play? How do other servers maintain player retention? Are my staff members behaviours the cause? What steps can I do to solve this? These are only rhetorical questions. But I do think it's a question every SM who may be struggling with player growth should ask themselves.

 




 

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Posted  Edited by Worgee - Edit Reason: I suck at grammar

I think there's a lot of good takes in this topic and can clearly see some things that show up about the same time every year or 2 being "is GFL dying". Often I see it be part of one usually active server losing some players etc. It is utmost important to keep global vacations and holidays in mind when doing statistic checks. Most people are out travelling from the start of June all the way to september. Not only are players out but so is the staff teams on the community servers. At the same time we see regular players spend more hours each session which most often isn't highlighted in server data and must be reviewed on a player level (which takes ages to review).

I'm exited to hear that @Salad is very open for people helping and with that it might be time to make a new list of "jobs" that could be filled on servers and teams. I personally could put some hours into a server on a weekly basis to help populate and/or analyze underlying problems in a server when it is in primetime and downtime.
In general I'm looking to be a bit more active in the community as part of doing some work with @Nick as of recent. I have some tools and experience in my backpack that could help GFL in different ways. From PR tasks to project oriented tasks and server staffing.

I hope that a page for open jobs could be made so that they can be filled by people that are interested.

Note to self: Add it to the list.

Edited by Worgee
I suck at grammar

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Posted  Edited by Toxic

I know I'm a bit late on this, but I still wanted to put my opinion in while this post was (relatively) fresh. To put my opinion bluntly, act more like a gaming community and less like a company. This isn't directed at any people in particular, though it could be, but GFL feels as though it has lost it's one true value, creating a fun gaming experience. I don't think its just a result of circumstances or coincidence that all the most popular servers in GFL form the past few years, at least in GMod, are all on the verge of shutting down. Also, I don't mean any disrespect to the members of the team by saying this, but can you think of any other gaming community with a Public Relations team? GFL is structured more as a top down company with employees than a gaming community as it stands. Lower-level staff like Server Admins should not have to worry about being reprimanded for being busy with real-life issues or for displaying normal human behavior, like speaking their mind on issues or just joking around. Not to bring up a petty detail from the past, but I don't feel like it would be handled any differently nowadays - if I had not appealed a ban from May of 2021, from when I was a server manager, I would be permabanned from the discords. Long story short, unbeknownst to me (my friends tricked me), I had sent a crash gif to the main discord. This affected, even being hyperbolic, 15 people at most. Even if it were intentional, it was a joke with no actual ill intent behind it which I would've undone immediately, and yet this warranted a permanent ban? In my opinion, this seems like posturing. You don't have to look and operate things professionally 24/7. This ties back into my original point - everything should not be taken so seriously if we're all here to have fun. Gaming is meant to be the vacation from reality and authority, and yet, here we are. Perhaps GFL wants to be something more than a gaming community, but if that is the case, it should be done in a meaningful way rather than a way that takes away from the original point of the whole thing. For example, the Surf tournament - this is a great display of the direction the community should be heading in. However, the community still seems to get bogged down by it's now-authoritative structure, despite it's good parts. Anyways, my point being, the end goal should be to both grow and have fun, with the latter being the priority. I completely respect the work each individual person has put into this community, but I feel as though all the higher-ups should collectively take a step back and consider what their priorities are. I saw Liloz & Dragoon mentioning the idea of brief "play parties" to get "natural population" to join, but doesn't that make it unnatural? Sure, have players to bring in others, but they need a reason to stay. If you're going for natural players, give them a fun environment to play in.

 

Also - Anycast! I feel like this should go without being said but, we can't act like it is still providing the same benefits it used to. It has been wildly stripped down, and I can personally attest to it's removal/deduction killing Prop Hunt.

 

Anyways, this reply is probably wildly unorganized and a bit of a tangent at this point, so I'll leave it at that. 

Edited by Toxic

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1 hour ago, Toxic said:

doesn't that make it unnatural?

 

1 hour ago, Toxic said:

Also - Anycast!

 

lol


Discord: Infra#0001 | Steam: /id/infra- | GitHub: /1zc

             Executive Director & CS:GO Division Leader          

Server Manager of CS:GO KZ

 

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5 minutes ago, Infra said:

lol

It was a point of, if they want natural growth, what needs to be done. Regardless of how it is achieved players need a reason to return

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So, I decided to go look at the numbers and use data in order to determine how active a server is. Of course, I'll need to define what an active server is. So, for the sake of this post, an active server will be defined as a server with an active enough community, playerbase, or a mix of both that meets sufficiency based on the size and scale of each unique server. An inactive server would not meet these requirements.

 

Hello, marketing major here. I have used data before, and this is a nice definition, but there are no numbers to actually provide as data. You can set up rules to define things, but there are no numbers to define the size and scale of each server that can be compared across multiple platforms. This is just you deciding the scale without proving any math then posting percentages of what you have defined as active. Therefore these results are not in the least scientific, but rather personal opinion derived from an arbitrary set of rules you created.

 

Quote

Familiar Divisions:
GMod = 5 Active Servers to 3 Inactive Servers (62.5% Activity)
TF2 = 4 Active Servers to 3 Inactive Servers (57.1% Activity)
-
Unfamiliar Divisions:
CS:GO = 7 Active Servers to 5 Inactive Servers (58.3% Activity)
CS:S = 2 Active Servers to 3 Inactive Servers (40% Activity)

 

If you had given individual results based on the servers, this would have been more helpful than encountering entire divisions, especially those you are not familiar with. While it is commendable that you did state you're not away of CS:GO and CS:S, you have not broken down any servers, but lumped them all together to most likely create more "meaningful" numbers you can use to your advantage. This is not credibility building in the slightest.

 

Quote

This is where the "Mentality of Stagnation" kicks in. Rather than having a mentality of trying to forward the growth of the community on multiple fronts, we're currently experiencing a point where we are neither growing nor declining. For reasons that we can only speculate, GFL is a stagnant community rather than a growing community. Of course, including both staff members and normal community members, none of this is any single person's fault in particular. However, I do not believe that understanding why it happened is more important than getting on the right track, and it needs everyone to be on board for improvement to take effect. 

 

So based on the rules and "data" you have provided, that are just  calculations with nothing backed up, you have decided GFL is stagnating. This does not make any sense in the slightest, because you bring up data which should be more tangible, then a mindset, which is intangible, cannot be measured, and irrelevant to what you previously posted. If you were going to structure an argument, you would have a consistent flow and tie in pieces together, especially with "data" and a "stagnation mentality".

 

You have also given no reasons for why you decided on stagnation, but rather chose a word you thought best to describe a situation you have poorly described yourself. You also have not defined what the right track is, but know that constant growth is not possible, especially for communities (I would know as a business major, that all businesses hit periods of growths and declines).

Quote

Whilst there are many reasons why it is imperative to pay attention to this community's future, I fear that we may not be most wary of our competition. A worry that myself and many other people have is that we will soon only focus on the active servers, while the other servers with active communities and lower counts will fall victim to the wastes. Though this is simply a possible guess at what could happen in the future, I know that there are quite a few people who share this opinion, but they do not think that anyone might agree with them in the open. The main reason why I'm making this post is not only to give other people a voice to be heard, but to additionally give everyone a way to share their thoughts.

 

A note: the transitions of this post are sloppy and it sounds like you want to make your real point here. You DESPARATELY WANT us (GFL) to freak about our competition. Focusing on what is profitable and more successful community wise allows GFL to offer servers that are inherently less successful. There are some core competency servers that exist, which are a main focus, but that does not mean that all communities that you have deemed "inactive" are any less of a waste and MUST be always profitable/busy. Diversification matters in situations like these, because if we offer extra services, that means things are good. It is literally impossible to always have 100% profitable and busy servers 24/7 because that is not how businesses work.

 

You giving the people a voice to be heard is irrelevant and buried in the post. If that was your true rationale, you would've stated that front and center, then made your poor, confusing point. I think we all know the reason is that you want GFL to focus on its "competition" which we all know who.

Quote

Of course, this also means that my thoughts do not wholly serve as the truth, for each person may have thoughts, opinions, and criticisms of their own.

 

So you're also saying that the data you presented is thoughts, not actually backed up, and your entire post is an opinion with really no merit except your own thoughts.

Quote

Frankly, I do not want to see the community that I've dedicated nearly five years of my time in to suffer an intolerably slow and painful decline if we are to simply remain stagnant, and I hope that everyone here shares this opinion. Lastly, thank you for hearing me out.

 

Thank you for your dedication, however there are others here who also have opinions that do not match yours in the slightest. Theirs are founded, while your description of "intolerably slow and painful decline" does not fit your "message" of "mentality of stagnation" and your real focus of us "focusing" on the "competition". You also have not given ANY indicator that GFL is declining, but suggesting it automatically is.

 

Nobody should share such an utterly unfounded, terribly biased opinion that is not clear within its message, but rather tries to hide what it is truly about.

 


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Posted  Edited by Brotherwolf

Toxic basically described exactly how I feel sometimes, but that's a different rant for a different day. I'm also not going to go about the wording on this post since I don't feel like getting into that. However, I will get into some things I've noticed about population.

 

This is just off my experience from HnS and a little bit of the main community. The way to get a gamemode to survive is definitely a dedicated staff team, as @Salad mentioned. If not for a very committed staff team and playerbase coming together, HnS wouldn't even have been here in the first place thanks to some dumb stuff that happened in 2020. If you have a dedicated staff team and playerbase, population can be very large. A good manager also helps tremendously. 2019 was a terrible year for HnS in large part due to bad management. Our manager from late 2018 had a ton of stuff irl and couldn't get on. He was replaced by an absolutely terrible manager in the middle of 2019, who was replaced in 2020 by an extremely inactive manager. This contributed to some drama between staff and also bad relations with players, resulting in lots of arguments and toxicity from some older players and the manager specifically. When @Fafy came along in 2021, he was the best manager we might have ever had to my knowledge bc he did his job without getting into a ton of arguments and led the server as it should have been led. I still try to follow Fafy to this day while I'm managing HnS.

However, there are a lot more factors (that people have probably already mentioned) than this. One is the server's reputation in the main community. At one point, it felt like everyone was going after HnS bc of some shitty misconceptions and a couple bad eggs that we had that went onto other servers (Nblock, Pigeon, Rennadai mainly). There were some people who didn't really do much digging into HnS and spread rumors about us, which didn't help at that time. Thankfully, this doesn't really happen anymore to my knowledge and HnS is having good activity and better relations with others, though we still like being by ourselves. Idk if we'd be here if we had continued to get completely denigrated through 2021.

Gamemode itself is also very important. There's no way certain servers will outpace others (take CWRP for example, that gamemode is a lot more popular than HnS and GFL has a very good server there). However, within gamemodes, a server can be pretty successful if there's little to no competiton. For HnS, that was S1ke (which got shut down) in 2018-2019 and then Brococli (which is clowned on for its mechanics) up until now. HnS, especially since 2021, has been running very smoothly. TTT is an extremely popular gamemode and having 4 different servers may help in terms of at least having a couple have good activity, though idk how split the playerbases are for the servers. I'd have to do more digging there. GMod as a whole is also not being played as much, which could contribute to lower activity in a couple of GMod servers.

 

Another thing is some servers have gotten really unlucky with issues. Prophunt has had some issues with connection and it also kinda sucked that a lot of their staff resigned. However, @TheThirdReaper and @Toxic in particular did a phenomenal job managing the server and made my experience very enjoyable, which contributed to a lot of Prophunt's success. It was really unfortunate that issues seemed to come up through no fault of their own. Now we're here where the server is struggling, which really makes me sad since this isn't any fault of their own. There's been an effort to get players back on, but I fear that it isn't the best way to go about it bc it felt sort of unnatural. Salad pinged everyone to get on once and he wasn't on, causing a few people (including me) to get annoyed. This didn't happen again though bc Salad was on when he pinged people to get on again, along with others (thank you Salad). The one concern I had was that I saw mostly higher ups (SM+) playing prophunt. While the intention is a good one, higher ups have other stuff to deal with and probably can't be playing prophunt much. There would need to be more staff that actually worked their way through the prophunt server, as well as a dedicated playerbase, going back to my first point. The growth of a server is best done naturally bc that feels legitimate to everyone. HnS has seen entire generations come and go, but we've just rolled with it and tried our best to welcome the newer players into the community.

 

Servers are going to have times where they go up and down in population. For HnS, that's always April-May due to lots of exams and school getting in the way for many (me included, thank you CollegeBoard). The best thing to do is to not panic and just wait for activity to go back up imo. Summer is usually going to be a better time for all servers and not just GFL. You can obviously check Gametracker and see how servers are doing in comparison to others.

 

My last point is don't focus too much on competition. Just do your own thing. If you focus too much on competition, you may lose focus of your own servers. This shouldn't really be a race between different servers. People join a gaming server to just chill out and have fun most of the time. Just focusing on your own server will probably result in the best things for your server. HnS (since Fafy became manager) has done a very good job with that. Given, we still hold pride that our server is far above anyone else's in the HnS gamemode, but we just go and do our thing. Focusing on competition can also be pretty dangerous, as both sides may end up going at each other. Brococli's server is our main competition, but I have a couple of staff there friended bc we were able to be nice to each other and one of their staff and I go way back.

You all may be worried, but GFL is still a big gaming server and tbh I'm not that worried about our future in terms of population.

Edited by Brotherwolf

-Brotherwolf

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8 hours ago, Akott said:

 

Hello, marketing major here. I have used data before, and this is a nice definition, but there are no numbers to actually provide as data. You can set up rules to define things, but there are no numbers to define the size and scale of each server that can be compared across multiple platforms. This is just you deciding the scale without proving any math then posting percentages of what you have defined as active. Therefore these results are not in the least scientific, but rather personal opinion derived from an arbitrary set of rules you created.

 

 

If you had given individual results based on the servers, this would have been more helpful than encountering entire divisions, especially those you are not familiar with. While it is commendable that you did state you're not away of CS:GO and CS:S, you have not broken down any servers, but lumped them all together to most likely create more "meaningful" numbers you can use to your advantage. This is not credibility building in the slightest.

 

 

So based on the rules and "data" you have provided, that are just  calculations with nothing backed up, you have decided GFL is stagnating. This does not make any sense in the slightest, because you bring up data which should be more tangible, then a mindset, which is intangible, cannot be measured, and irrelevant to what you previously posted. If you were going to structure an argument, you would have a consistent flow and tie in pieces together, especially with "data" and a "stagnation mentality".

 

You have also given no reasons for why you decided on stagnation, but rather chose a word you thought best to describe a situation you have poorly described yourself. You also have not defined what the right track is, but know that constant growth is not possible, especially for communities (I would know as a business major, that all businesses hit periods of growths and declines).

 

A note: the transitions of this post are sloppy and it sounds like you want to make your real point here. You DESPARATELY WANT us (GFL) to freak about our competition. Focusing on what is profitable and more successful community wise allows GFL to offer servers that are inherently less successful. There are some core competency servers that exist, which are a main focus, but that does not mean that all communities that you have deemed "inactive" are any less of a waste and MUST be always profitable/busy. Diversification matters in situations like these, because if we offer extra services, that means things are good. It is literally impossible to always have 100% profitable and busy servers 24/7 because that is not how businesses work.

 

You giving the people a voice to be heard is irrelevant and buried in the post. If that was your true rationale, you would've stated that front and center, then made your poor, confusing point. I think we all know the reason is that you want GFL to focus on its "competition" which we all know who.

 

So you're also saying that the data you presented is thoughts, not actually backed up, and your entire post is an opinion with really no merit except your own thoughts.

 

Thank you for your dedication, however there are others here who also have opinions that do not match yours in the slightest. Theirs are founded, while your description of "intolerably slow and painful decline" does not fit your "message" of "mentality of stagnation" and your real focus of us "focusing" on the "competition". You also have not given ANY indicator that GFL is declining, but suggesting it automatically is.

 

Nobody should share such an utterly unfounded, terribly biased opinion that is not clear within its message, but rather tries to hide what it is truly about.

 

 

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4 hours ago, hdscorpio said:

I've also yet to see a post asking for people to apply for the SM position of Vanilla, seems like that one was just completely abandoned. 

 

Sarcastic I Dont Care GIF by Sound FX


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(Signature credit to @Clavers)

 

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Posted  Edited by Dragoon
11 hours ago, Akott said:

Thank you for your dedication, however there are others here who also have opinions that do not match yours in the slightest. Theirs are founded, while your description of "intolerably slow and painful decline" does not fit your "message" of "mentality of stagnation" and your real focus of us "focusing" on the "competition". You also have not given ANY indicator that GFL is declining, but suggesting it automatically is.

 

Nobody should share such an utterly unfounded, terribly biased opinion that is not clear within its message, but rather tries to hide what it is truly about.

I didn't go into extensive detail about how I saw things here, and that's a completely valid criticism. However, I'd like to also say that I haven't been mincing my words here and have been completely honest about my feelings about this subject. Sure, it's subjective. But that's what it's meant to be. People are going to completely agree, people are going to completely disagree, and people will fall in between. There's a wide spectrum of thoughts on the matter, and I'm glad that a lot of them have been spoken.

In your post, some things are hard for me to follow, like the part where you brought up my feelings about possible decline (Though my opinion on that has changed a bit thanks to a few people here). It was a hypothetical rather than a full-on fact, and I reiterate another apology for my bad phrasing. I get a good part of where you're coming from, but I also don't think it's fair to insinuate that I'm lying to everyone and have some hidden agenda when these are frankly untrue statements in all regards.

I don't really know what else to say about this thread since I've conveyed most of the messages I wanted to, but Scorpio summarized most of my end goal featured on my third post in a much better way than I did:

5 hours ago, hdscorpio said:

In summary: I get that you guys need help, but you should be more vocal in the Discords and Forums about this, scream it from the rooftops! Make people aware!

Edited by Dragoon

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