A lot of my time goes into werewolv.es, if you play the game and are reading this, I'm going to guess a lot of your time goes into it as well. As such, I want to it be a positive experience for all concerned. If it isn't a positive experience, it is a nasty addiction to be removed from your life. This is a piece about the type of community I want werewolv.es to be. It's a piece I'd rather not have to write, but I believe it's fair better to try and nip problems in the bud, whilst they are small.
This isn't directed at any one person individually, if it were I would simply DM them. If you feel that any of this may apply to you, don't think of this as a reprimand, I am probably unaware of the situation you're thinking of. Instead, reflect on it and try to be more mindful next time you find yourself in a similar situation.
I find rules and guidelines such as these difficult to write. Infractions against them are often enforced to the letter yet it is the spirit that is important. We must always remind ourselves why the rules exist in the first place.
A number of online communities suffer from toxic atmospheres and preventing such an atmosphere is my chief concern as werewolv.es grows. I think one of the simplest tests for this is how welcoming we are of new players. Think back to your first game, in all likelihood, you weren't very good. Had someone raged against you for making a novice mistake, you might not have come back for a second game. Point out any mistakes politely. Be helpful.
Werewolv.es is not a low effort game, this is true of speed games but it is even more a factor in 24 hour games. There is a prerequisite amount of time, problem solving and post contribution that you will need spare to devote to each game. If you know you are unlikely to have this capacity over the course of a game's expected life, please do not join it.
A caveat - Real life shit happens and unexpected things crop up. Prioritising life commitments over games is absolutely the correct thing to do. No one will be mad at you for having to bail a game unexpectedly but please at least let a mod know if you have to. We may be able to explain the situation to the players, we may be able to find a way to help.
To me "it's only a game" means to not take a loss too seriously, it does not mean "don't take the game itself seriously". It's the intensity of the game itself that is inherent to its enjoyment. In my opinion, it is absolutely correct the game itself should have stressful moments in it, it's what makes it worthwhile to play. But that should not spill outside of the game.
I play this game a lot in person, and I will use everything I can to make the best move I consider for my team at the time, which may involve a character assassination attempt at another person and a very heated exchange. Once the game is over, we shake hands, laugh, congratulate the winner and then move onto the next game.
During the game you should be playing to win for your team to the best of your ability, if you don't take the game seriously, you impact on those that do. If no one cares about the game - why bother playing at all?
Play to win in the spirit of fairness. If everyone's role was revealed to you, the win would be empty. Remember, this game is high effort and high reward.
People like to be congratulated for a deserved good win, usually involving high effort, or high risk that paid off. They don't like to hear gloating from the winner. They don't like to mocked for a mistake they know they made. By all means - have a civilised post mortem of the game, but try not to be a dick about it.
Spamming and Shitposting
When it's witty and well thought out, light trolling and shitposting is funny. Even when it's not, every now and then, these style of messages can still lighten the mood. However, when it's constant and low quality not only does it become not funny, it drowns out important content (or worse - it becomes the only content). Walls of spam and shit posting means it can be more effort to find important clues in game. Whilst this may be a valid tactic from evil, I'd rather steer clear of a meta that involves lynching all of the shit posters before the real game can begin. It detracts from the (mostly) mature community werewolv.es should be and discourages high effort, high reward content.
Bugs and Problems
As much as it may appear I am sometimes, I am not actually omnipresent. If you have a problem on the site please let us know. If it's a general problem, post in #bugs on discord so I don't get millions of DMs!
If it's a bug that you have accidentally benefitted from (e.g. knowledge you should not have) it is even more important that you let a moderator know. (Think back to sportsmanship)
A recent exchange I had with an individual whose account I had banned made me think about this, in fact it may have been the straw that broke this particular camel's back and caused this piece to be written, but it certainly isn't the sole reason.
Reasons I have banned people in the past include:
- Spamming game lobbies
- Intentionally ruining the game for their wolf team-mates by outing them
- Having multiple accounts in the same game
- Repeatedly being smited for inactivity
The last three could be filed under the heading "directly harming enjoyment of the game for other people". Spamming is slightly more subjective, but I hope I explained this in the "Spamming and Shitposting" section.
Werewolv.es is not a single player game, your actions have consequences that affect others. Literally every person that I have ever banned has been to prevent their actions from disrupting the enjoyment of everyone else.