Astro Empires Article

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The Monarch
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Astro Empires Article

Postby The Monarch » Tue 01 Aug, 2017 19:11

Good day all,


I'm currently writing a freelance article I plan on submitting to a couple of gaming sites/blogs, and I've love the input of the community to be included - I'd also like to have a couple of the moderators - whether retired or current - involved too.

I know 'Ikari' occasionally still lurks on the forum, and if you are reading this, I'd like to get a couple of words from you on your involvement with Astro Empires.

From players, I'm looking to basically give you interview based questions about you & your Astro Empires experience i.e When did you first join? How did you find the game initially?

From moderators, I'd like to know why you decided to volunteer for Astro Empires, how you'd describe your overall time volunteering and so on.

I'm currently waiting for Support to fix my forum account as I can't send PM's but can receive them, if you'd like to partake, either PM me and I'll reply when I can or you can leave me your E-mail address.

The purpose of this article and what differentiates it from other articles is it will be looking into the people behind AE. It'll be looking into the community that keeps this game still standing together, the volunteers who keep the public spaces of Astro Empires civil and free of content which go against the rules, and looks into the background of the development team - and how what started off as a personal project for one man became the backbone of his income.

I received an E-mail from Wizard after sending him a questionnaire, but I'd really like to get some player input, moderator input - and maybe from the development server volunteers and the language translators.

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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby Winchester » Tue 01 Aug, 2017 20:06

I'll participate. I'm one of the oldest members still lurking. I was a volunteer, a global mod, played multiple servers, and have been in some of the most successful guilds in the game.

"That's what I do. I drink and I know things."
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The Monarch
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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby The Monarch » Tue 01 Aug, 2017 20:35

Winchester wrote:I'll participate. I'm one of the oldest members still lurking. I was a volunteer, a global mod, played multiple servers, and have been in some of the most successful guilds in the game.


Great, I'll be in touch over the next few days, thanks.

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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby Uncle Ben » Thu 03 Aug, 2017 06:17

Winchester wrote:I'll participate. I'm one of the oldest members still lurking. I was a volunteer, a global mod, played multiple servers, and have been in some of the most successful guilds in the game.

Such as Derbhoes Intergalactic Inc., right?

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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby Ron Burgandy » Thu 03 Aug, 2017 11:14

Uncle Ben wrote:
Winchester wrote:I'll participate. I'm one of the oldest members still lurking. I was a volunteer, a global mod, played multiple servers, and have been in some of the most successful guilds in the game.

Such as Derbhoes Intergalactic Inc., right?

BSMF...

...lol plus why should i tell you?? your the one who wants to jump in and bite the lion on the nuts
I may not be active, but I am watching ... Always watching :twisted:
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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby Winchester » Thu 03 Aug, 2017 16:51

Ron Burgandy wrote:
Uncle Ben wrote:
Winchester wrote:I'll participate. I'm one of the oldest members still lurking. I was a volunteer, a global mod, played multiple servers, and have been in some of the most successful guilds in the game.

Such as Derbhoes Intergalactic Inc., right?

BSMF...


And RAVE.

"That's what I do. I drink and I know things."
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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby Wlerin » Fri 04 Aug, 2017 23:17

Thunderstorm wrote:You should also mention the greatest player to ever play the game, Kingdoom a.k.a me.

*Soubanth

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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby Winchester » Sat 05 Aug, 2017 00:34

Wlerin wrote:
Thunderstorm wrote:You should also mention the greatest player to ever play the game, Kingdoom a.k.a me.

*Soubanth


*Retemnav

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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby Winchester » Sat 05 Aug, 2017 01:00

Monarch, I tried to respond to your PM, but it says you've disabled receiving PMs and wouldn't let me. So, here are my responses.

Q1) When did you first join Astro Empires?


A friend from another forum told me about it, and it seemed like an adequate way to kill some time.

Q2) What spurred your interest in becoming a moderator when the voluntary role was made available?


I wanted some power to abuse and to be able to spy on things like warnings and the mod forum. Plus, it got me a free upgrade.

Q3) You were also a volunteer who tested potential features on the development server, at it's peak, how many other volunteers were you working with?


Hard to say, since people would pop in and out as they pleased. I can't really recall more than 10-15 people ever showing up within the space of a month.

Q4) I'm sure there's been many proposed and tested game ideas that actually haven't made it past the development server, how often would new features be developed in the development server and was there ever any arguments over tested features that were scrapped from being implanted?


It was extremely rare for Wizard to actually implement any new features, and most of the time he did it with little or no input from the volunteers. There were frequent arguments, because Wizard was rarely interested in any idea that wasn't his, and his ideas tended to suck. The volunteers also had different viewpoints on ideas, which was a good thing, really - or would have been, if we'd been listened to. Xaman would also frequently get on our case for not being respectful enough to Wiz, which didn't help.

Q5) This ties into question 4: Of the good ideas that never made it past the development server, what was the explanation given - if any?


The explanation was usually one of three: 1) Wizard couldn't figure out how to code it; 2) Wizard didn't think it fit in with the roleplay aspects of the game; or 3) Wizard or Xaman just plain didn't like it. Of course, the most common response was silence - we wouldn't get any word on what Wizard thought about a given idea, and the thread would eventually die.

Q6) Astro Empires has a very large 'history', there's been big 'wars' ingame that have been long spoken about for years, and player stories. Could you share with us your favourite ingame story?


Well, you have to define "in-game" - to me, the forums were the real game, and by far the best forum story was the infamous meltdown of Drake Colin Rene. It was a 12-18 hour period of DCR utterly losing his *beep* about spaceboats, attacking anyone and everyone in a particular thread. It's still a good read, even though the best posts were pruned for content shortly after it happened.

As far as the spaceboats are concerned, the best stories aren't about the big wars, because those usually involved blob stares and anticlimactic endings. The actual best stories are from the people who played the game for fun, rather than to win. One of my favorites was when a guy named Cerberus, on Ceti, joined BIO - a guild known as the ultimate farm on the server. He convinced most of their players to park their fleets on his base...and then proceeded to drop guild and rape them all with a single death star.

Cerberus was one of the reasons why I wound up making invasion specs on every server I played. I would build up a collection of fighters, heavy bombers, frigates, and capital ships - including, at one point, approximately fifty death stars - and sit them on bases with upwards of 28 command centers. When someone would inevitably try to invade, I would annihilate them. I think my best ratio was ~16m to ~45m, against a guy named Polyorchid on Ceti. Good times.

Q7) Back on topic - How did the developers treat volunteers?


Like garbage. We weren't respected or listened to. When Wizard introduced his concept of fleet maintenance, it was met with near-universal disapproval by the volunteers; several of us put together exhaustive revisions to fix the glaring holes, and I think Wiz only adopted one or two minor changes before he introduced it in AE 2.0. Myself and a few other volunteers tried to make it known that we did everything we could to stop the atrocity that was 2.0, because we would normally get the blame for Wizard's crappy ideas - even though we were the first to speak out against them.

Q8) If Astro Empires went offline tomorrow, how would it make you feel? It is only a game, but for a multiplayer game thats very time consuming and has been active for over 10 years, the same people you play with, you're looking at as a co-worker or a friend, would you miss the community Astro Empires has?


AE barely has a community these days. 99% of the people who made this place fun have gone. What's left are the tryhards on the lolservers who want nothing more than to kill the server faster than anyone has before. AE no longer has any relevance or value, and I think I would be happy if it were to die a well-deserved death.

Q9) Anything else you'd like to add?


You didn't ask much about moderating, so let me just say that the most fun I had as a mod was warning and banning people who annoyed me, whether they deserved it or not, and turning a blind eye on the people I liked. Good times.

"That's what I do. I drink and I know things."
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Re: Astro Empires Article

Postby The Monarch » Sat 05 Aug, 2017 01:37

Whoops! My bad, sorry for the inconvience, thanks for posting it!


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