HighQuality on Ramuh was formed on Jul 10, 2004.
At close to the 5th-6th month mark (Jan 2005-ish), we faced perhaps our first major divisive issue. Hopefully, the changes made with the incorporation of the "Common Law" and the realignment of Sackholders toward "Mediators" will help mitigate future issues.
Initially, I was worried, but now it seems like the shell will survive.
Again, this is a repost of a thread I written last October detailing where I would like to take the shell:
My original post (the one titled "Sackholder selection") was both divisive and easy to misinterpret. For that, I apologize.
Hopefully in this post, I have clarified my intent and have addressed concerns that people may have.
Where are we going:
I wanted to send out a message to all of the sack holders detailing my vision for the HQ Link Shell and to give you my perspective how I think the on the linkshell may evolve and the challenges it will face.
First off I feel we are very fortunate to have the current linkshell membership. Frequently I recieve messages to the effect that this is one of the nicest linkshells that people have been a member of. This is probably the best compliment that could be paid to the community and is a positive reflection on the personality and character of the members. It has always been my intention for the linkshell to be a community of friends that serves to enhance the enjoyment of the game for all of the members and I think the linkshell is moving in that direction. Also a positive sign is that most large linkshells perish after 3-4 months at most. High Quality is at the 5 month mark now and shows no signs of slowing down .
In the very near future there are a number of challenges that the linkshell will face. I've tried my best to guess what these might be and their potential impact.
New MMORPG releases (EQII and WoW):
EQII and WoW will be released on November 9th and 16th respectively. This will be a difficult time for many of the North American communities in FFXI. In general the mood of the LS seems upbeat and most of our linkshell members have not explored the majority of the content in FFXI. As such, even with a dual release I expect the HQ linkshell to survive. Some member to be certain will leave for other games, but as a whole I feel confident HQ will make it through. Many other North American linkshells will not be as fortunate and will collapse as a result. During this time we will almost certainly see some of our members migrate to these other games, and also we will likely see an influx of players from other North American linkshell communities that have gone under as a result of the release.
Ethics (ex. Gil selling and other EULA violations.):
EULA violations and the associated debates/arguments are dangerous due to the divisiveness they introduce into the linkshell. As these issues come to the fore it is my intention to privately solicit input and then to set "official" linkshell policy. I do not want any of these issues to polarize the linkshell.
End game politics:
As the linkshell matures and the members approach the level cap, there is a surprising amount of endgame politics that can significantly distract one from the simple enjoyment of the game. As much as is possible I would like to make the membership aware of these "land mine" and in general steer the linkshell clear of them. Most the the late game issues arise from obsessive competitiveness or the obsessive need for achievement, and several can be attributed to failed or unhappy in game relationships. The former 2 are predominantly associated with HNM linkshells. On that note...
The life cycle of HNM linkshells and why the endgame focus of HQ should not be HNM hunting:
Most endgame linkshells become HNM linkshells. Not to surprisingly, once most players conclude with levelling, they begin to look for other challenges. The most common ones sought out are HNM's and Dynamis raids. In general HNM linkshells demand the exclusive attention of their membership. Considering the nature of the camping required for a typical HNM and the value and rarity of the drops, it is not surprising that there is a lot of tension and bitterness that eventually permiates HNM linkshells. Due to the time constraints they impose on members, the game often starts feeling like an job. Politics are omnipresent, and the typical life cycle of it's members is around 3-4 months. Eventually the head(s) of the LS burns out, the LS fragments, the fragments fight among themselves, and eventually a dominant shell again emerges. Then the cycle repeats.
Futhermore, alot of inter-LS wars and drama are started over those rare drops.
Social mixers and events:
In general I am looking for ideas for mixers. Events where we can get people together, hopefully allowing them to meet new acquaintances. So far the trips to Buburimu have been a success, and I’m looking for other suggestions .
Opening new content - Promyvion Rank Missions, and Genkai:
As a general rule, in addition to providing an environment where people can connect, the LS should also serve as a vehicle for opening up in game content. Promyvion is a prime example and will hopefully be a major success for the linkshell . What makes Promyvion special is that anyone with a job of at least level 30 or so can participate.
Supposedly HQ is a crafting LS, but to be honest crafting is just another type of content. My objective is to maintain the current supportive environment for crafters in the LS, and hopefully to expand on this in the future. We may eventually have ‘guildmasters’ for the LS who can serve as mentors for future crafters .
Rare drop content, AF Gear, Dynamis raids, HNM hunts:
I would also like the LS to eventually offer up the support and organization needed to explore this content. However, before a significant amount of effort is expended in this direction, there is some groundwork that needs to be put in place. The pursuit of rare drops can be a lot of fun, but for many it becomes a prime source for burn out with the game. If people have been wondering why I have not rushed to embrace making AF gear hunts a LS event now, it is a result of these concerns. I’ve been on a lot of AF key hunts and similar rare drop hunts and have witnessed first hand what they can do to someone’s enjoyment of the game. With a good set of rules as a frame work, a good deal of basic organization, and some management, I am confident that the negative aspects of these ventures can largely be avoided. Ideally we want the events to feel fair, to be successful, and to be done in the spirit of helping friends. My feeling is that the first step in developing the organization needed to do these events enjoyably is getting members used to using the forums to schedule them up.
In closing we have a really nice LS community and a shell worth protecting. We need to protect the LS community from divisiveness and protect the individual members from burnout