Due to the growth of our little community recently, we thought it would be a good idea to give some kind of address to the collective. I want to take this opportunity to talk about what we’re planning, the methodologies we’re using to execute, and how the community is being organized within that scope.
As most of you know, we started as a core group from another guild which itself was born from a reddit community. We quickly found that a small percentage of that group shared some common gaming styles and, perhaps more importantly, a common attitude toward how gaming communities as a whole should be organized. As it became more difficult to sustain this way of thinking within someone else’s guild, we decided to detach.
Strategy & Co. was born.
Immediately after that move, we only had about 8 core members—although some other people soon followed. However, in the last 30 days, we’ve had over 100 new members. Additionally, the forum has been active in the last month with over 1700 posts in almost 250 new threads. I expect these numbers to continue to grow exponentially as our membership increases.
This growth is really a testament to our awesome member base. You guys have been writing helpful threads, creating great content, and welcoming new people with open arms.
What this also means is that each of these games are very much still alive. Make no mistake about it, we are a multi game community. Our primary resource at Strategy & Co. is you, the member. That’s what makes a great community. While we absolutely love our games and some of us our passionate about specific games, we all know that playing massively multiplayer games always comes down to who you’re playing with.
For us, that means mature people who enjoy helping each other out. It means a feature rich infrastructure to communicate with everyone and bring us all together. Lastly, regardless of our differences in politics, race, religion, or anything else, we all want a “safe” toxic-free environment in which to game.
As the community continues to grow, my role has become less of a guild leader for any particular game and more of an executive to support multiple guilds. On a personal level, my goal is to create tools and establish methodologies that our guild leaders can use to grow their individual sub-communities.
Effective immediately, @biff_tannen will be promoted to Guildmaster of our Elder Scrolls Online branch and @majordomo will be leading our Wildstar branch. Both of these guys have been enormous assets for us here. They’ve been resources for information on the forum and in mumble, and have helped create a great system. They will be picking officers for their respective guilds so if you’re interested, I encourage you to post there or send them a PM.
Further, we are establishing an executive council to handle tasks for the community as whole.
These are your go-to people to PM if there’s an issue or you want to get something done. They’re here to help you do things in this community. If you have an idea, let’s discuss it and get it done!
While we definitely want to grow in numbers since it facilitates our expansion into other games, our ability to always have someone to jump in a game with, and therefore our fun level, we also want to make sure we are keeping to our core beliefs. We’ve never had to kick or ban anyone or anything like that, but we should reiterate that our goal here is to build something everyone wants to be a part of.
We are inclusive here, not exclusive. Obviously, racism, sexism, etc. is not something we practice but beyond that it’s important that we take a moment to understand what kind of community we want to be further into the future and how we get there.
Every single person I’ve spoken to on this forum or on mumble is an intelligent adult with a good sense of humor that contributes to us. That’s my honest opinion (otherwise, you’d probably have been kicked by now, hah). What I want from the members here is to always keep in mind that new people coming into the community get a first impression of how they should conduct themselves and run with it. If that first impression is of the Xbox Live variety, a lot of gamers just jump right into it. Conversely, if that first impression is a bit more elevated, they are very much capable of operating at that level for understanding, helpfulness, and civil discourse.
That is to say, it’s all about who they’re dealing with when they join. That’s why it’s up to us, you and me, to set the tone. I’m looking to you guys to set the tone for this community. We’ve been doing a great job of that so I’m pretty confident as it stands.
The Next 30 Days
The next month is going to be critical for us. It’s going to show us whether this thing is really going to stand on its own or if it was a one-hit-wonder. I think you can already guess what my stance on that is. I see us continuing to evolve into one of those communities that, when a new game comes out, everyone wants to see what we’re doing, what server we’re playing on, and what they can learn from us.
Establishing ourselves as a community that has things going on is a major boon. Think about new users coming in: They land on the homepage and they like what they’re reading, their next stop is the forum where they’re going to look for events, helpful information, friendly replies, and a welcoming environment.
Here are things you can do to be part of our success during this critical time in our early history:
Schedule and participate in guild events. Not sure about your idea? Just throw up a thread! If the response isn’t as great as you’d hoped, ask the people that were there what you can do to make it better next time.
Write a guide. Or a how-to for a part of the game you’re particularly interested in. You may think everyone already knows about it but don’t forget there are new members joining all the time and just seeing that there are members here who pride themselves with sharing knowledge is a huge plus. I guarantee your effort will be rewarded with praise and respect. Take the time to format it with headings, bullet points, quotes, and include video or screenshots.
Share a post. At the bottom of every post is an icon to share it which puts a special tag at the end of the link, e.g.
?u=vocino. Using this link will ensure that you get credit for bringing in that traffic. See those new guild posts? That helpful guide? Share it! Post it around and let people know that you find this community to be a special place and perhaps they might too.
Invite friends. If you’re a regular user of the forum—meaning your trust level is high enough—you have the ability to refer friends. These invited friends start out at a higher trust level than brand new users (since you’re vouching for them). If you think someone is right for this community, invite them! You’ll have a list of friends you’ve invited on your profile.
Write a game megathread. Are you playing some MMO that you’re absolutely loving but no one else is playing? Sell us on it. What do you love? What do you hate? What would make playing with your fellow strategists a rewarding experience? Take the time to format it well and include video, artwork, etc.
In all of these cases, if you need any help for me or the other officers, don’t hesitate to ask! We are here to support your efforts. These efforts get recognized and rewarded whenever possible.
As many of you know, we just launched our Twitch Team last week. I’m constantly on the lookout and hitting the pavement to establish new deals to help our community and you guys directly. I’ve reached out to several PR companies about game releases, streaming events, and charity that we can do. We’ll be doing major events, streamed live by multiple members, with major giveaways and prizes.
Strategy & Co. is establishing ourselves as thought leaders in the multiplayer gaming space. We can teach what we know and be an example of our gaming communities can operate.
All of these things equal a ton of fun lined up for us. I’m continuously working on our infrastructure (the forum, mumble, etc.) and investigating new features to help us do more and better enjoy gaming together.
If you have ideas, suggestions, criticism, or other feedback, don’t hesitate to post a Meta thread. I think I’ve done a pretty good job of getting features implemented that people want so far and as we grow, it will become more important to prioritize.
As I said above, Strategy & Co. will continue to evolve into that community people look to for leadership when new games are released or when they’re getting back into an old game and want to know, for sure, they have a great group to jump in with. It’s you guys and girls, the founding members, who will shape how we grow and how we present ourselves to the larger gaming community.