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TheNoob_Gamer

[ANSWERED] Tips/tricks for hosting a successful community project?

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Posted (edited)

I've been thinking about hosting a (cool?) community project lately; but my lack of moderation skills is still making me hesistant.

Any cool tips?

EDIT: The question has been answered, thanks everyone for leaving suggestions. If you need to bump this thread, please do it with a valid reason in mind.

Edited by TheNoob_Gamer

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Posted (edited)

I can't speak from personal experience (I'm a bit newer to mapping and I've only worked solo), but from what I've seen: you need to present your project in an interesting way that really attracts people; get really creative with your vision and idea. Establish a strong theme/set of themes, from the start that will help to guide the project in the direction you want. 

 

Speaking of presentability, I think you should include a good amount of text offering some exposition about what the project is striving to be/achieve, even give some backstory/lore if you're seeking to have a bit of a narrative to backup your project's gameplay and theme(s). Include a lot of screenshots to give people an idea of what the mod is sort of going to look like. Make sure to update this information as the project progresses toward completion.

 

Create a set of rigid guidelines that will help to guide the development of this project. They could be almost anything, but a good example might be some sort of expected deadline. Organization and structure is no doubt important with large projects like these. Clear and effective communication with project collaborators is also important. Depending on the nature and scope of the project, you may want to implement some form of version control as well.

 

Other than that, I would suggest looking at some community project threads for some more ideas.

Edited by phoo

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No publicity - no prosperity, basic rule of businesses.
The better you advertise you thing, the more attention it get, mpre people would interest in it, more people would willing to contribute to it.

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 ̶O̶h̶ ̶b̶o̶y̶,̶ ̶s̶i̶g̶n̶ ̶m̶e̶ ̶u̶p̶ ̶f̶o̶r̶ ̶t̶h̶i̶s̶!̶

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rdwpa has pretty much hit the nail on the head regarding the OP.

 

I would recommend preparation as well, typically pick a texture pack if required and make some maps prior to posting. Try and make a map for each theme/episode so people can see straight away see what is expected of them. Getting a buddy to make a map or 2 is not a bad idea either, it all helps.

 

Get people interested before you even post on here, get some screenshots up somewhere and mention that it is for an up and coming CP.

 

When you start the CP, don't deviate from the original idea, that puts people off a lot and also don't let others force you into changing things, stick to your guns, it is your project after all.

 

Also extra 1 tip, do as much of your mapping prior to starting as possible. Having the project time frame to look after/motivate the CP members makes life a lot easier, gives you time to do graphics, find music, make alpha builds and getting streamers to play. 

 

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Posted (edited)

Do a limit removing project and don't go too crazy with rules and let mappers do what they want. Any theme, don't assign map slots because you (as the leader) decide where the maps end up according to theme, amount of monsters, etc. It is all about having fun. Also it is VERY VERY important to interact with the mappers throughout the development of the project, keeping it active is the key to success. I've led 2 successful CP's because of this resulting in 2 megawads and around 90 levels total, most which were fantastic maps indeed all because of a strong and positive interaction between members.

 

Here is an example, let's say we have a Pcorf Community Project 3.

 

- For Doom 2

- Will use Memento Mori 2 textures.

- Maximum 2000 linedefs.

- Have fun mapping

- Any theme

- For limit removing sourceport.

- Use only Jimmy's music. Any song of your choice.

 

- Maps will be arranged by theme, amount of monsters, etc.

- If more than 32 maps are received an overflow episode will be created.

 

Special slots

 

MAP15: (must contain secret exit)

MAP30: (must contain Icon Of Sin)

MAP31: (must contain secret exit)

 

Submitted maps (5) (EXAMPLE)

 

Unspeakable Persecution by John Romero

Underhalls by American McGee

Icon of Sin by Sandy Petersen (MAP30)

Chiron (And Hell Followed) by Dr Sleep

Wormhole by Ty Halderman

Edited by pcorf

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I've just about finished running my 2nd community project and aside from what rdwpa laid out very nicely is once things get started ALL energy comes from the top and flows down. The difference and energetic and positive leadership person/team makes is massive. If the ones running the show appear to be doing sweet fuck all then your mappers will very quickly lose interest or get annoyed at the lack of obvious progress/direction. 

You don't have to necessarily be mapping to generate that forward flow. Testing, regular updates, feedback, maintainance of the resources, answering questions are all ways to show that leadership is paying attention and expecting submitals. 

I've seen promising projects stagnate for months and years never to be released, and projects that looked dubious on paper be more than successful and be warmly received on release. The difference was the drive from the top. 

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Don't disappear suddenly without warning.

 

The host of a community project I participated in a while back did this, and it's been in limbo ever since. It got to the point where I basically said "fuck it" and pulled out of it. That shit if anything is unfair towards everyone involved.

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Posted (edited)
52 minutes ago, MFG38 said:

Don't disappear suddenly without warning.

 

The host of a community project I participated in a while back did this, and it's been in limbo ever since. It got to the point where I basically said "fuck it" and pulled out of it. That shit if anything is unfair towards everyone involved.

 

Agree. I find this extremely frustrating. This is why I usually don't participate in CP's.

 

TNT Devilution (which I was very keen to finish myself) is a great example of this. But there are others too.

Edited by pcorf

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10 hours ago, Bridgeburner56 said:

I've just about finished running my 2nd community project and aside from what rdwpa laid out very nicely is once things get started ALL energy comes from the top and flows down. The difference and energetic and positive leadership person/team makes is massive. If the ones running the show appear to be doing sweet fuck all then your mappers will very quickly lose interest or get annoyed at the lack of obvious progress/direction. 

You don't have to necessarily be mapping to generate that forward flow. Testing, regular updates, feedback, maintainance of the resources, answering questions are all ways to show that leadership is paying attention and expecting submitals. 

I've seen promising projects stagnate for months and years never to be released, and projects that looked dubious on paper be more than successful and be warmly received on release. The difference was the drive from the top. 

 

Well said!. You absolutely nailed it. Agree 200%.

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There's been a lot of good advice here, @TheNoob_Gamer. I completely agree with the points raised by our esteemed colleagues.

 

I've never led a community project, but I've involved in several, some of which were successful, and others that have foundered. From those experiences, these points are what I would like to add to the discussion.

  • Be civil. Be supportive. Don't be abusive. Provide clear feedback. Provide quality control, as necessary.
  • Leading a community project can be a lot of work, so you need to be prepared for that.
    • With regard to the Doom side of the project, it may go smoothly, there may be rough patches, you may not get the involvement you were after, you may get more people interested than you have space, or you may have people drop out after pledging to make a map. You have to be ready for any and all of these. Don't take any of it personally, just roll with the punches, and adapt.
  • Have at least one map ready, or nearly ready, when you announce the project. This is particularly important for your first community project before anyone knows what to expect from you.
    • You may be super excited about your idea and want to rush out and get people to start working on it, but if you have work already finished, it conveys the message that you are actually committed to the idea and have already done some work to support it. You aren't just throwing out an idea to try to get people to make a megawad for you.
  • You are still a human being with a life in the real world, so things might happen that will take you away from Doom.
    • That's OK. But if it you do have to step aside for an extended period of time, just communicate this to the other people working on the project. You don't need to go into details, you just need to apprise them of the situation and how long you'll be incommunicado. And if that changes, try to let them know that, too.
  • It's helpful to have some lieutenants that you can trust to contribute to the project and assist you in managing it.
    • This isn't necessary (there have been plenty of successful CP's that didn't have any), but it can be helpful to have someone else on your team.
    • It also provides encouragement to potential mappers that you are serious; in fact, you've already recruited people to make maps for the project.
    • At the end of the day, though, you're still at the top, but you have others who can help shepherd the project, particularly if you have to be absent.
  • If you're going to have to step aside for an extended period of time (for example, you were just transferred to a research station in Antarctica for a 12 month assignment and you leave next week), appoint someone to take over the project so that it can continue in your absence.
    • This is another reason it's nice to have lieutenants.
  • As Lib said, settle on a set of rules ahead of time. Make sure those rules are clearly communicated.
    • Don't have hidden rules that you don't really publicize well.
    • It's fine to have a very specific interpretation of your rule set, but make sure that specific interpretation is clearly stated.
    • You should be fairly firm with your rules. The project is YOUR project to lead, not the people contributing to it.
      • Please understand that I don't mean that you should be so rigid that if someone points out a serious problem, you ignore it and demand that the rules be followed. If your rule set has a serious flaw or problem, be flexible enough to address it.
        • I think this would be a good reason for you to modify your rule or rules:
          • "Rule #1: Maps must not violate the vanilla save game buffer limit. Rule #2: Maps must contain at least 500 monsters."
      • I do mean that if a potential mapper just doesn't like your rules or wants you to change a rule or rules for some reason that isn't critical, don't do it. If that means they don't contribute, then that means they don't contribute.
        • These are not good reasons to change your rules:
          • "Chainsaw only maps are boring, so you should allow other weapons in the maps."
          • "I know you said no Commander Keens, but I have an awesome idea that will require Commander Keens, so I need you to relax that rule."
          • "I'm not very good at Doom, but I want to make a hard slaughtermap, so you need to drop the requirement that a mapper must submit a demo of them UV-Maxing their own map."
  • Some people will say you need a Discord channel. You can have one if you want, but it's not essential. Valkiriforce managed Akeldama perfectly fine without a Discord channel.

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On 3/18/2020 at 8:00 PM, rdwpa said:

Signup List
 

Dobu Gabu Maru

that's enough, all other text is irrelevant.

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Keep your first post informative, succinct and pleasant to read.

 

Make sure all the rules are decided and clear from the start.

 

Be prepared to do everything yourself.

 

If you do not already have a reputation on the forum be prepared to scale down the project.

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