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Old Jan 16, 2019   #1
Erth
One Bang Dan
 
One Bang Dan Black Belt
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 9,131
Clan: Tribe



Clan Outreach

Hey community. This thread is going to, at least temporarily, act as a basis for community-staff interaction with regards to various clan related issues. Right now, that issue, as we all know, is the clan activity checks.
The main complaints I've observed from the community so far are the following:
Game isn't exactly popping right now, why put that pressure on clans?
We've invested so much time into this game, why are you punishing us?
Use rewards, not punishments to encourage activity.
Initially the requirements for activity were very high, now they're far more realistic but it requires fleshing out.
The system punished larger clans because of activity relative to full member count.
If I've missed something, let me know. But the gist of it is, I agree.

I ran a test check (doesn't count towards anything) that checked the last 2 months and 4 clans got a warning, no clans failed. While it's definitely a good thing that clans are passing, there needs to be a balance both staff and community are happy with. Not trying to please everyone, but there are definitely steps that can be taken.
The system was harsh and felt like it expected clans to save toribash by cracking a whip. I believe the intentions were good when the system was made but there were a couple of things that made it go over badly. A big part of it, I believe, was that it was a total surprise for the majority of the community.
Automation and stuff was a staff goal for a looooong time, so we all had a long time to get used to the ideas as they were introduced one at a time, but the community got it all at once and it was too much difference at one time.
The aim of this thread is to maybe avoid that problem.

By the way, I'm ignoring any activity strikes that clans currently have. Let's start fresh and see where we are from here onwards.



The current criteria:
  • Below 25 points - they get slaughtered (instantly, no strikes given)
  • 25 - 50 points - they receive a strike (or get slaughtered in case of current strike being the third one)
  • 50+ points - they pass the check
  • 55+ points - any points past this point translate to points that can be spent on perks

Originally Posted by sir
Technically it was never announced that they get any rewards for passing checks with high activity points, but I gave 5k / 10k bonus points when I had to run checks while duck was away. Wasn't done with December check as I was away.

The system currently awards points for ingame matches and using its board.

Below is a spoiler containing how the activity points are calculated and what affects it. This has been tweaked so much since its inception, so a priority for me is getting this formula sorted so that we can progress with the other stuff. The stuff that makes clans properly fun again.

The inner machinations of clan hell




Proposed new system:

0-24 points = fail - gain a strike
25-30 points = we'll let your clan know it was close to the mark but it doesn't work against you or anything, it's purely for your own benefit
40+ points = start gaining perk points to be spent

These values would be subject to change later once there are more ways you can earn points.

Having a clan be instantly killed for shitting up 1 activity check is too unforgiving imo. There are always luls in activity due to school, or just general life getting in the way.
The 25-30 area functionally means nothing for us, it's just that we want clans to stand the best chance of being able to do something about their waning activity. In addition to this, we have made it so that you can give permissions in your toriclan ranks that allow members to perform their own activity checks:

bazinga


During this system checks would be performed every 2 months, and failing any 2 checks within a 6 month period would result in either having your clan killed, de-officialed or you can appeal the decision (more deets later).
What this means in an example format is:
strike, pass, strike = death/appeal/de-official
strike, strike = death/appeal/de-official
strike, pass, pass = all good

In any given 3 check period, your clan must pass 2 of them. Simple, easier to keep track of and ultimately gives you a good chance of fixing it if proactive.

Currently clans with less than 5 members have their activity points penalised, based on the part that evens it out for larger clans. I'd like to increase that number to 7 as 5 seems low to me.
Any member that plays 5+ games in a month is considered active. I would like to explore a way of rewarding further ingame activity without potentially damaging the less ingame active clans.

Currently the system does not take into account two things that I consider important.
Events and Singleplayer.
Currently we do not have clan events aside from Clan League. If all goes to plan, that may change but right now there are other things to work on. I would like whatever system we end up with to have the option for those kinds of things to be taken into account. I mention it here for transparency but it's so reliant on so many things going right that it's definitely not a thing for a while.
Gaining extra activity points for participating in Event Squad stuff ingame would be a big plus, and something we plan on adding.

Single player is the big one that none of us have really been able to figure out, but it's a priority imo. Single player clans have always been a very specialist area, and under the new system just don't make it, which is a real fuckin shame.

The issue we have is as follows:

We want to find a way to automate it, but looking at uploaded replays and counting them leads to an unmoderated mess. As I understand it, it would be easily abuse-able. Upload 500 frames of neck wobbling a couple times and call it active. This is obviously not that way we'd want it to work, and we couldn't figure out a way to make a robot be able to tell if a replay has had effort put into it, particularly given differing skill levels.

On the flip side, CS going through every clan looking for replays. Then going through the replays board, looking for all new replays and seeing if they're in an official clan clearly isn't viable either. As much as people say "CS don't have a lot of work, just let them do the thing" it's definitely not a long term solution. I can guarantee you that based on my own experiences leading a team. Things that require long term man power in that fashion just don't hold up.
If we can find a temporary solution that requires a lil bit of manpower then that's a different story, but it's not long term. But it is better than nothing.
This is honestly the big one that I want to know your thoughts on. In the months that this clan check system has been in place I've not been able to come up with a solution, and neither has anyone else I've spoken to lately.

A potential way to do it that we're looking into is looking for posts in the replays (and mods) board and check for uploads to the db. Then the local mods can delete super low effort replays/mods/bullshit uploads to prevent it adding onto clan activity.
There is potential for this to then be applied to the art board, but it's much more tricky given that the art board uses [img] tags instead of db stuff.
This is just a thought at the minute, sir tells me it's more difficult than it sounds but we'll see what we can do.

Inactive Ranks:

I know a lot of people have been calling for them, but functionally they serve no purpose with the way the check is done. If anything it would end up hurting your clan because it excludes them from the check, so if they happen to pop by for a couple matches, it won't end up counting.
If they were added back it'd either be damaging or purely aesthetic so there's not really a point.

Perks and Rewards:

So perks and whatever have been slowly being added during all of this.
Here's a copy of the perk shop post.

Perks



In addition to this, we hope to look into the following:
A static official clan server - I believe this would give clans a place ingame to go and chill. Would hopefully encourage ingame activity in a nice fun way? Don't know how hard it would be to set it up so clan members get half op in that server automatically or something? Otherwise, it might be possible with just ownerpass stuff. We're going to pass it on to Dranix and see what he says. I envisage it working alongside checks, where you'd spend perk points to open a server and then it'd continue to cost points to keep it. Doing this obviously requires balancing so that keeping it is maintainable with good activity.
Forum customisation - custom thread tags, custom new thread button, coloured toriclan background. General nice little customisation tweaks to make clan forums feel a bit more homey.
Not strictly a perk but we're hoping to take a look at how clan ranks work - current system despite a logical basis is too reliant on a long term roster but people change and make new clans a lot. So we'd like to take a little look at that.
Recruitment banners - ability to short term rent banner space at the top of the forum and on the ingame dashboard to advertise recruitment. This would be open to unofficial clans too. We believe this would get clans more integrated into all aspects of the game, bridging some gaps and hopefully giving clans more tools to survive.

We're definitely taking more suggestion of perks. Things for you toriclan, your forum, ingame stuff (although I want to keep ingame aesthetic change to a minimum).




Criteria alteration





A portion of people in the various threads called out for "a human touch", and I also agree that there should be some degree of human review. As such, I would like to implement an appeal system as a last ditch attempt for you to save you clan.
If the checks showed that it was pretty close, or your clan feels that it deserves another chance then you can appeal. This can only happen once a 2nd activity strike is given.
Your clan gets its second strike within 3 checks, and then the leadership can appeal.
This would be in the form of a pm (I imagine) that compiles all the reasons that the clan believes it should deserve a 2nd chance. It gives you a real chance to rally on your own terms, and I'm hoping it would give a lot of members a reason to remember why they fell in love with toribash in the first place. Maybe I'm being naive, but I like to think it's possible for everyone here to remember why they started playing in the first place. I know I still go through phases like that.

CS, SMods and Admin+ would then weigh in on whether that clan deserves another chance.

deets



p.s cheers for taking the time to read this, please make sure you do read it fully. I know it's quite dense but we've been working quite hard over the past few days to get this into a public-ready state asap, so please do read it thoroughly.

p.p.s thank you to Hagan for the art on short notice and thank you to CS for being welcoming. They could easily have been like nah fuck off but they've responded really well and all seem eager to do some good.
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #2
!Woeb
 
5th Dan Black Belt
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 527
Clan: win



glossed over it, but more dedicated servers for official clans would have some strain, no? the hosting is shaky as is from what i've seen


also something like an icon ingame for official clans would be cool


also sorry for glossing over it i know it said to read it fully
<[Alpha]Diamond> in short: you count pings, you run, you lick boots
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #3
Euphoria
Euphoria
 
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 453
Clan: Bionicle



I applied for an official clan 2 times, they refused me, because supposedly my clan members "don't communicate with each other" when we have a discord! how become offical, who can tell me? .-.
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #4
TheGodTeam
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Green Belt
Join Date: Nov 2018
Posts: 5
Clan: The God



I think all the points and perks and delineations is vastly over complicating a relatively simple issue. I think we should solve the problem of meaningless and over-abundant clans.



Clans should compete for their existance. Have a forum-wide event where in the best 10 clans are granted freedom and are rewarded with their own sub-forums. This would be a fresh start and it would give meaning to the clan system again. Instead of an endless sea of pointless clans there would be only 10 elite, well known and well respected clans.


The criterion of choosing what the "best" clans are is a somewhat more difficult question, but I propose the following:


25% in game skill

25% overall influence (replays, mods, art, style, culture, etc.)
25% size and activity
25% Clan Staff Discretion
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #5
Trice
Just Do It!
 
3rd Dan Black Belt
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 14,132
Clan: Liquor



Originally Posted by Erth
0-24 points = fail - gain a strike
25-30 points = we'll let your clan know it was close to the mark but it doesn't work against you or anything, it's purely for your own benefit
40+ points = start gaining perk points to be spent

To my understanding that, you only get a strike when you got 0-24 points. However if you got 25-30 you're safe but you won't get perk points and to get perk points you need 40+ points. Am i understanding this correctly to this point?

I also just made a summary of the thread, feel free to correct me if i didn't understand it correctly.

DISCLAIMER
I still advice for people to read the whole thread as a whole though.
"0h no" -Trice
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #6
Retro
ub3r
 
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 2,532



Clan perks as a whole are far too unrewarding for the prizes that are given. I don't see why going beyond for clan perks is worth it for some small forum customization on a clan page people see for maybe a few moments. I suggest something like being able to spend points to give a clan monthly VIP, or something along those lines. Icons on posts is good and I like it, as well as a usertitle if you go hard enough for it. I was also thinking of something akin to the staff badges, but it has to be generic enough to be not like staff badges, fairly easily texturable with your Clan's Tag on it, and somewhere at least somewhat visible on the body. Maybe the tricep? I think delving into the item department is neat but should be a rarity, and not too extreme as it takes away from the prestigious 3D item via winning clan league and other big clan events, should they happen. Overall there needs to be more things beyond what we have now.

Personally, being able to run a server is kind of irrelevant too, as well as the idea of having an ingame server for clans to chill in. The same thing can be accomplished via any other server, or just making your own and changing the desc. Giving a ton of people h-op seems more destructive than anything, and these rooms would likely be less used than public rooms with mods that aren't popular.

As for Inactive Ranks, I do feel as if there is some compromise that can be made to suit both sides. Despite reaching the mark for activity being far easier and less brutal than before, I think an inactive role has some purpose in calculating a clan's true numbers. Perhaps some sort of penalty enacted for having players in that slot, or even an automated system of some sort where it slots users into inactivity when they fall below X Games or X Posts within a certain time period. Even so, the argument of "Well you just lose points if they happen to swing by once in awhile" can be combatted by inactive ranked users contributing half the points they would normally, for all intents and purposes? This prevents an exploitation of putting active members in the inactive role and also allows older clans to keep old cherished members off to the side without jeopardizing their clan size, and what not. This is all off the top of my head, not particularly sound and likely not a good idea at all. But it's a nice discussion starter for something.

As a whole this is a very nice step in the right direction, and far more fair overall for clans. I like the work, it's actually far better than clans and the community being annihilated with little way to save themselves.
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #7
&Fear
 
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Join Date: Mar 2010
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Under the new criteria it is possible for a very active forum clan to pass checks on forum activity alone. I'm hoping to encourage people to go ingame through the rest of the stuff, but we'll keep that as a baseline.

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Old Jan 16, 2019   #8
Fyre
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Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 2,037
Clan: zero



The Official Clans Servers sounds great! I feel kinda left out .-. My clan isn't really official but I'm happy to see the game is improving like this
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #9
Zwar
Member
 
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Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 222



The old check wasn't that hard to reach you know, but its true that u had to play more than you would usually do. I think the new check will fit easily (also i don't think anyone would fail the check now)
[Bionic]
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Old Jan 16, 2019   #10
Lionet
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2nd Dan Black Belt
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 4,410
Clan: OwO



good stuff Erth, I'm glad to know forum based clans can pass these checks with some ease.

It's also very good to see how worried you guys are with singleplayer clans, such as mine. I don't think there is any automation that can be done to perform replay checks fairly, but I like the of lmods on replays board splitting relevant replays from low effort ones, also participating in replay events being count.

About the official clan rooms, would it be a single official clan room where all official clan can join and have OP or an official room for each clan? I didn't get it right
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