| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (14)

Posted: Nov 13th 2009 9:31PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Nice to read about your background.
I wish I could join your RP parties back in the day!

Posted: Nov 13th 2009 10:49PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
"...ran forums, SysOped BBSes, played & maintained door games, moderated fan forums and sites, and continued to run other large live-action games from Florida to California."

Decent background. You could potentially get hired on doing community management work with a game developer or publisher with that kind of experience. Community building and moderating experience (both in-game and on forums) is what they're are usually looking for.

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 8:05AM Krystalle Voecks said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Honestly? I'd love to do that. To be able to design and run in-game RP parties and events for players; hang out with them and act as a community liason to the dev team; or help create awesome real-life events at conventions? I can't think of a job I'd rather have, frankly.

Perhaps someday I'll get the chance. In the meantime, I'm happy to be able to spend time with players in lots of different games as part of the Massively crew. ^-^
Reply

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 3:24PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I'm not kidding. For example, I was just talking to a Community Manager the other night and his initial background was building community fans sites for RTS games (i.e. running forums, moderating them, helping train people through knowledge sharing, etc). He was so passionate about it that he was approached by one of the RTS game developers and asked to be their community manager. It was definitely a lucky break, because a lot of game companies don't think community is that important, but it is changing and rather quickly (i.e. read some of the latest GDC roundtable discussions amongst developers). Actually some MMOs today are even looking at incorporating community roles into the game itself. For example, Alganon will eventually have key people that will role play the gods within the game.

Therefore, don't knock your previous experience, as it's pretty valuable. Your attitude and approach to community management is the key thing though. As you said, you need to be a liaison or diplomat to both sides, understanding each of their needs and being a clear voice for them. Therefore, the more you can show how you created a positive social space and community around the games you loved playing, the more suitable you will be for the job.

As for getting hired, look for junior community management roles with titles like "Associate Online Community Specialists" (i.e. check out Gamasutra's job postings and search with a keyword of "community"). That will get you in the door and then you can learn the ropes inside and work your way up towards a lead Community Manager position, if that's what you desire.
Reply

Posted: Nov 13th 2009 11:07PM Anatidae said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Shame you missed the UO experience. I joined the "net" (before it was called the internet and was still a government run system with connections between collages - at least that is how I got my entry) back before MSDOS was really solid yet. I was running CPM (you have to be really old school to know that). I was only 7 and programming from BASIC BASIC. By the time I was 9 to 10, the C-64 was making early rounds and I was cracking software protection to hack games.

MMOs have always been a pull for me. Colleges had access to the early MUDs that were student programming projects for the most part, with only handful really known about and played. They started as projects to create very immersive worlds with a "Zork" like interface... all text for those of you who don't know that.

Even the first graphical MMOs, Ultima Online probably being the first "hit" in the MMO space, were aimed at creating worlds in which your avatar lived rather than gamed. Everquest still had quite a bit of that.

Yet over the last, what, 14 years or so since UO. MMOs have become more and more like games and less and less like simulated worlds. There are a few exceptions, like EVE. EVE does feel like a huge universe to be sure.

Yet most games, take Champions as a new one on the block, just lack substance. Log in and kill things. Don't need friends - solo it all. It is just about doing damage and avoiding damage. Perhaps collecting gear to do that better. Very little about socializing, teamwork, or "living" in a persistent world.

I'd like to see some of that old spirit from the BBS days (anyone remember BBS based table top games? Post your turn each day, heh) and the RP from LARPing and SCA and wrap that into an MMO world. I think in order for MMOs to become deep worlds where players can, once again, feel like they live there requires actual tools and gameplay elements for community. Like, rob the SIMS of some good ideas regarding non-combat gameplay for instance.

I guess I am saying that your article really reminds me how shallow MMOs have become after I read your rich background.

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 8:29AM Gaugamela said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I agree with the comments from Brian and this article was really interesting Krystalle!

I certainly don't have the background you guys have (i'm younger and was introduced to MMOs by WoW) but i must agree that MMOs are becoming too shallow.

Even though WoW probably isn't anything compared to the older MMOs in terms of immersion it still had a fair bit: the crafting was solid and with lots of choices, the world was persistent, there was a sense of danger and in PvP servers there was a lot of Open World PvP (yeah the infant days of WoW).

Today MMOs feel like theme parks too focused on only one portion of MMO gaming that wasn't that great: looting to kill bigger and faster monsters. You can see this mentality in other games.

I would like to see a recent MMO that would give more of that immersion feeling and a multitude of choices. An MMO that comes out with a vast crafting system, little places hidden in the world accessible to explorers (even if by exploits), with something else to do besides killing monsters or players (like having housing or mini-games related to other genres like racing or sports...).
Reply

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 4:35AM Russell Clarke said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
"Growing up in my house was a somewhat strange affair."

That is just *so* Charles Dickens!

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 8:52AM Krystalle Voecks said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Hahahaha! Unintentional Dickens!

I do tend to wear my influences on my sleeve at times, so I guess that makes sense. (The Shakespeare was intentional, though.)
Reply

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 7:13AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
This was a really good read. Thank you so much for sharing.

It made me realize how much I miss real RP, and how I myself have succumbed to the constant grind towards the end game (and towards the top tier stuff within the end game content) despite being the same kind of slow leveler, who liked to take the time to PLAY the game. Not just experience the content, and certainly not just breeze right through it as fast as possible, but taking the time to BE there in the world, and play in it with other people.

It also made me realize that I should resubscribe to City of Heroes :)

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 12:14PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I am kind of sad to see no mention of FFXI. One of the Livejournal communities for it is actually how I know you, and how I found this website. Heck, I still have some back-and-forth in my Gmail inbox. XD (Back when I was trying to find my POL ID and those comments were about whining on Square-Enix.)

Amusingly, one of my long-time friends was actually one I met while attempting to RP within FFXI, but even though that never really got off the ground, I would still base my decisions in the game off what my character would be doing, and not myself. Odd, ne?

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 12:33PM Krystalle Voecks said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Not to sound contrary, but are you quite sure you aren't mistaking me for Seraphina Brennan, our resident FFXI fiend?
Reply

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 12:47PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I think you might be right. Sadly, I no longer have those emails.

You would be the one I recognized from the WoW LJ community, instead. Same idea different game. :B

Posted: Nov 14th 2009 4:26PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
It was a very interesting reading, thanks.

Posted: Nov 16th 2009 7:07AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Awesome article. It's always cool to hear about other people's experiences with anything gaming or nerd (I mean this in a positive context) related. That nightclub bit sounds like a blast. :D

Featured Stories

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW