Chef, Scroll-Keeper, Buddy's #1 Fan
I agree the Archmage and mages are glorified babysitters of grown adults, yet some people covet the titles. I don’t really give out honorific mage titles though because in a competitive FS, almost everyone is an overachiever, but not everyone is capable of management duties. Not every all-star makes good managers and some of the best managers were mediocre players in their day. If you want to be a mage, you have to go above and beyond gameplay and actually do the boring admin stuff of helping run a fellowship, like being available to players, maintaining spreadsheets, and dreadful recruiting. I promoted a first time player to mage because she is a college student with extra free time and enough computer know-how to maintain our spreadsheets. I also agree I do not “own” my players and they are free to come and go as they please. However, I disagree what we say is of little consequence.I apologize for failing to clearly explain my thoughts on the role of a successful AM. I was trying reference from a game of my youth to explain the power relationship. My point was that the AM has virtually ZERO Power. People come and go at will. Yes, the AM can write rules (that no one has to follow) and can drop people (and have no members) and change titles, but those actions are of little real consequence. The only thing that matters in a successful fellowship is the relationships developed and the sense of accomplishment, teamwork and belonging - basically, "Is the fellowship fun?" Policing suggest a threat of coercive force, impossible in Elvenar. I regret my example missed the mark.
Quality control is part of the job if you run a competitive group. I run a Spire-focused FS, but I’ve recently sent out a “Quality Control” message when I noticed people starting to ignore Tourney. Well, I don’t even have a Tourney minimum listed. For the record, we are averaging 15-to-16 chests so this isn’t an issue of missing out on blueprints. It’s about attitude and quality control. I spelled out why I do not have one listed, but said that doesn’t mean tourney is optional here so everyone is on the same page. Then I said if doing both Spire and Tourney is too much, then don’t do it because it will take away from your sense of fun and this is supposed to be a game. BUT it does mean this is not the right fit for both parties involved. We are a place for people who want the extra challenge bc we embrace the extra difficulty and think that makes the game more fun. If it feels like work, it ain’t the place for you. People who don’t want to tourney are free to walk away on their own to find a better suited group for their style of play. Otherwise, they have two weeks to sort out their cities to get it into Spire+Tourney shape, or I am rolling out the Archmage trebuchet in July.
Everyone has RL stuff going on too, myself included. I don’t plan to add poking the same players weekly to complete Spire and Tourney on my todo list, especially when I already have players that tell me they’re going on vacation in Greece or wherever and still manage to finish Spire and get 4k of tourney in, even when it is expected that they should have zero activity for the week! I’ve also let someone stay inactive for a whole month as she got busy selling her house. We can afford to cover for players that want to be here even when RL hits because everyone else is covering for their teammates and not just doing as they please. It is my job to keep the FS one of like-minded playing styles because that’s where most of us derive our fun points. You don’t have that if there is no enforcement from management. Policing doesn’t always have to be coercive force. I left it open for them to walk out on their own or become human projectiles in two weeks. Nobody walked out and I haven’t had to use the trebuchet…yet.