First Edition: The Community Crisis Issue (October 30th, 2016)
Letter from the Editor
With the community in one of its worst states in a long time, myself and others have decided to use the Wikia as a platform to host a weekly newsletter. The hope is that by having a regular outlet for pinpointing and providing solutions for major issues, as well as promoting events and projects that could potentially strengthen the community, hosted on the most community-accessed platform aside from the game itself, we can realistically put some progress towards repairing the sinking ship that is our military community.
Many key figures have written community restoration pieces over time, which tend to create a strong sense of almost...patriotism for the community for a small amount of time. People get inspired for a couple days at most, and things almost seem on the up and up. However, as it seems, the majority of militants abhor change, exile originality, and just lack the ability to make true progress.
So honestly, I hope this newsletter is hated. I hope it turns into a thorn in the side of each and every one of us. A constant reminder of our faults, our inabilities and the ways in which we all damage the community we constantly complain about saving. Maybe then, we may be forced into reparations.
Kevlar Vaughn, Editor-in-Chief
Allergic to Change, a Militant's Dillema
by Kevlar Vaughn, Editor-in-Chief
Recently the military community has been the victim of widespread contagion. A severe allergic reaction to change. Time and time again militants will shun new concepts, any ideas which fall outside the norm. Stuck to the "If it isn't broken don't fix it" mindset, like parrots they'll repeat without fail, "this worked in the past, why deviate". Well, newsflash kiddos, it worked in the past, but unless you call three different militaries rising, peaking and dying per week a success, it sure as hell isn't working now.
The "flagship - infantries" structure just isn't cutting it anymore. Don't believe me? Ask the people hopping off your recently inactive guild to the next four day long military. Being a militant is getting boring, repetitive even. There's no diversity, no originality. Your military may be named differently, it may be themed differently, but tear away all the aesthetics, and the bare bones look the same as every other bloody military around.
People used to take militaries and use it as a foundation, a foundation to reach greater heights. Guild-house city networks, functional and extensive government, sheltered societies where anything and everything was possible. You name it, it was likely someone attempted it. But now, what was once viewed as mere foundation, is the best leaders can now hope to achieve. Having an active, two unit military in its most basic sense is considered an achievement. Isn't that a disgusting realization?
Instead of shunning the outlandish concepts, embrace them. You have a self-importance issue and need to feel big by shunning an idea at least once a week? Shun the idiots who continuously draw you into these carbon-copy militaries. I can't tell you the amount of times I've heard "Militaries are boring now. There's nothing new. The community sucks." Well hey buddy, remember that guy you laughed at for proposing an economy focused military, and then abandoned to be the useless Colonel of (x) Infantry of (x) Empire? Yeah, that was called change, and it was your dumb ass that shut the door in its face.
The Balloon Effect
by Sol Fessler, Author
Now, the concept "Community Crisis" might seem a bit melodramatic to some. When you first look at the community for a couple seconds, it might seem like that. But if you actually take at least a couple minutes to see what's going on in the military world; you'll see what's wrong.
I'm sure most of you have heard all of it already. The power struggle, the rank chasers, not working together, etc. That's all correct, but no one has actually talked about why or how any of this happened. And no one has in detail actually really went over the current, 100% setup of issues. Everyone has really went out and talked about all the shit that's messed up and some suggestions on fixing it, but otherwise, no. I'll try and get to the stuff no one has gotten to right now.
A big reason this might have happened, was because of how Graal itself grew. The "Golden Ages" of the community were in times where Graal went from 100-1000 people, and never more. In 2014, the community skyrocketed in numbers. This was a good thing, because a lot of the recruits were of good quality. The community went from battles of 20; to battles containing over 50 people. Guilds held up to 30-40 people online at once. This time is a lot like the Great Depression; as the military world skyrocketed in every way possible. GFX, people, ranks, everything was perfect. However, by early 2015, the community began rapidly declining. A big reason simply being, when you have a shit ton of people claiming to be veterans, and serving for almost a year, they're going to expect ranks. And when a lot of people are of officer capability; they are going to expect good ranks. When too many people think they are, (or are) of officer capability, it becomes a issue. People couldn't all get the ranks they felt they deserved, and the community began truly becoming chaotic. People were in search of ranks, and the guilds they served became less and less important. Dozens of families were made daily to try and create a feel of power. Upstart, incompetent guild leaders attempted to use the rank chasing issue to bring in soldiers. Many guild leaders followed in example.
In a way, it was sort of inevitable; due to the way the community grew. It could have been fixed, because when guilds like The State came; everyone took the rank they got. Unfortunately, it wasn't stopped. Veterans began quitting, causing a lapse in the status-quo that had dominated the game. With the best people leaving, less worthy people had to take the reigns. Auel and Xinke also slowly began to fade away from their prime, which meant a new dominant figure would have to unite the community; though no one did. As more and more veterans quit, the lines and boundaries that had once kept order in the game began fading away. It was no longer only veterans who felt the need to get the best ranks; but everyone in the game. Or almost everyone; anyways. Some good apples still remained. The game also got much much bigger; going from 1000 players online to over 4000 players online. Unfortunately, the recruits weren't as good as before.
That's pretty much what happened. The community inflated like a balloon, then it popped; and no one has tried to pick up the pieces. In fact, it's like people have been tearing the broken pieces up. And spitting on them. And then throwing the pieces in a oven, and cooking the pieces inside a hot Italian sausage. Yeah, gross right? That's your community.
For the people reading this; who really want to make a change, then just start with yourself. Don't try and do anything super huge. Perfect your own skills, your own ability. And most of all, don't be greedy. As much as we'd all like to be Colonels and Generals, it's those willing to take the hit to be Lieutenants and Sergeants who keep it all glued together.
Editor-in-Chief, Kevlar Vaughn
Head Author, Sol Fessler
Author, Grizz Regium