Veterans: what has changed about Choice of Games and the forum over the years?

I know I have been here since 2013 so I guess I count as a veteran?

I would definitely say that there’s plenty of interesting and varied ideas for games being talked about and generally discussed rationally, even if it still seems like half the games are variations of ‘you wanna date a vampire/werewolf/insert supernatural romance here’. :grin:

Hearts Choice is a new addition and whilst I still think it needs to find its footing and place in things (and yes include more M/F stuff I will never shut up about that lol) it’s a fun and ideal counterpart to the other two apps.

I generally feel that most discussion is civil here, clearly I would like that to remain and not see us descend into the ways a lot of the internet says of reflecting modern society (two very loud and annoying people on opposite sides yelling at each other and everyone forced into one camp or the other is my typical analogy). I think the mods here do a good job overall and know how to manage things between being too aggressive or ignoring things. :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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Only joined in 2017, but lurked a good while before that. One positive changed I noticed was getting “interest check” threads under control. Used to be the forum was cluttered with a lot “would anyone like to read my idea?” threads, many of which consisted of a minimal idea and little or no work done towards. I think moving them into a single thread until there was an actual demo is an improvement.

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I’ve been a lurker round here for a fairly long time, you may have seen one of the very few times I’ve commented on something though probably not. A decent chunk of my teen years were consumed by this forum and wanting to see what cool stuff was being written and in that time I’ve seen most the best hosted works as they were being made and it always gave me a vibe that anyone who had the drive to do it could. It’s what sparked my interest in writing. I have always been fairly proud of this community with how it, especially the bigger names, behaves most of the time because while not everyone gives the best criticisms they can usually tell you what you’re doing right and are willing to encourage you to continue working, at least based on what I’ve seen over the years. This is probably the only larger scale community that I openly identify with because of my experiences and how open it is to others, even those they might fundamentally disagree with
As for changes, there has definitely been, and not to insult those who came before, a great boost in the quality of writers since about 2015 or 2016. I agree with many sentiments shared about writers not liking criticism mostly because of how many major franchises keep getting screwed due to bad writing these days and the creators attack any with legitimate criticism. Seriously, I have a grudge against Rian Johnson and the current heads of lucasfilm just for that reason. The hatred I hold for the roundhead aside, I think that many writers don’t realize how useful feedback is for creating a product that most who look at it, even if they don’t like it, can say it’s of objectivity good quality.

Regardless of my opinions on this community or writing in general, this forum has been there for me in some of my hardest times, even if the community never knew it. I’ve seen this company grow as well as many promising projects come and go and I hope it keeps doing so
Also that rhyme was an unintentional side effect of being in a hurry to get this done so I can get on with my day and I just realized I did it

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Everyone seems younger.

Writing is higher quality.

I mean, seriously, some of these folks are babies.

Less silly chatter (maybe I just miss it)

I mean, I have t-shirts older than some of these people. Las Vegas trip, 1999! They still used coins! And we collected the little coin cups!

More CoG authors, but it feels like fewer HG authors? Maybe most of us are holed up in our respective threads?

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I was about to agree about the youth of new members but hoo boy, I’m only five years older than your t-shirt, lol. :sweat_drops:

Also, I love your new avatar. What a cutie patootie!


I think the biggest, most welcome change to the forum has been the dark theme, lol. My eyes are grateful for that.

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Wait we didn’t have a dark theme? :pleading_face:

Yeah. We didn’t get the dark theme until about a year ago, lol

We have a dark theme?

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We do. i’m currently using it now.

Dark Mode

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theres night mode???
i joined in 2016/2017 i think. now theres more people here so its more active.
and also heart’s choice line
ah i remember how i used to argue back and forth with someone over a character. i realized now that i shouldve just moved on and that both our opinions are just opinion :sweat_smile:
im grateful for integration of other social media especially tumblr bc i get to discover more wips that way. i originally came from tumblr (the choice of dragon post) and more active there. i follow the choice of game tag and sometimes wip shows up on my dashboard. also liking the cool moodboard/aesthetic post

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And how does one learn this power?

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Under User Preferences -> interface -> enable dark theme

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One thing I have noticed that hasn’t changed is how willing this community is to help each other when someone has a coding error pop up in choicescript. Something I’ve always liked about it to be honest.

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I started being active in 2015, a little after my son was born (pretty sure that there is a strong minority of folks my age or older, but an increasing number of teens and twenties-ers coming in fresh).

I think we always had a reasonably diverse group but people are being more open about their individual experiences, as diverse writing is encouraged both here and in the wider world, eg mentally ill people don’t usually want to talk about it (obviously), but we know this is a safe space and that we can help other writers do a good job of representing mental illness in fiction. So we speak up.

This forum is way bigger and more active nowadays (and the stories are WAY longer), but I agree with The_Black_Reaper that it’s always been a really excellent community. I’ve accidentally hurt people a couple of times and people were kind enough to take me aside and explain what was going on, which I really appreciate.

Mara, you’re a brilliant critic, definitely harsher than most but an absolute treasure for anyone who genuinely wants to improve their writing (all writers THINK that they want to improve their writing, but it hurts real bad when it happens). Not that I agree with everything you say, but that’s life.

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One thing that hasn’t changed? There still seems to be a high proportion of night owls on this forum :owl:

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Woah. Thank you for that. I actually regularly invert the colors on my device because the dark theme just looks better than the conventional/regular theme! I had no idea that the Forum had such a theme; this dark theme is awesome!

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One of the interesting aspects of Choice of Games is that it as a business it has survived-and I would say prospered- in an industry that does not handle niche games quite well. It is in it of itself an achievement.

As IF continue to make its presence known in the gaming ecosystem, it will be very interesting to hear about how companies like CoG established their footprint and where do they see the industry going.

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For me, the main change has been people coming and going. @Sashira, @FairyGodfeather, @Drazen and @Vendetta spring to mind, but there are loads of people who it was good having around. There are nice newish people too, like @Vyndral and @E_RedMark, I like their Funny Thread posts. There’s always a lot of nice people around.

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Alrighty, here goes:

I haven’t been here that long, but I suspect with the length of my rambling, that might have never been a problem for moi.

There are only two scenarios when three isn’t a fairly seasoned number: describing lifespan or years you’ve lived in NYC since truly veteran experiences are measured there in the amount of times you’ve passed a man whizzing out in public or so I’ve heard.

I think audiences fracturing like this is inevitable when there’s increasingly diverse WiP threads and not enough time in the day to keep up with all of them. It’s simply overwhelming otherwise. In a positive way of course, but still overwhelming.

Romance is tried and true and easily digestible with increasingly more mainstream audiences. Without decent ROs to fall back on, there’s a lot more room for floundering in experimentation and ultimately flopping. The interest would have been there before most likely, but while it was still starting up, significantly more niche, and finding its footing, there wouldn’t have necessarily been staples at all. Now that CoG/HG has developed its own genre expectations, romance has reliably become one of them. Not that there aren’t still remarkable exceptions. @hustlertwo’s love interest void hustle for one is impressive. I admire any and every author willing to fully discard the almost safety net of relatability that is romance. Not that romance isn’t also noteworthy when written well–just that romance definitely looms over the minds of almost any writer in fields like this where the unspoken rule is “goo goo eyes must happen” regardless of whether they feel it fits their story or not.

Thank god for that. I have witnessed some legendary memes that might never have entered the annals of fandom history without the community’s expanding into other platforms. More visibility and accessibility are always a plus.

The company has only been around since 2009. You’ve been here for over 45% of that time. Surely that grants veteran status? :joy:

I’m sorry you feel that way. It does tend to come with expanding territory though as it shifts from everyone basically knowing everyone (so misunderstandings being rare) to strangers on the internet. Unfamiliarity breeds confusion, confusion anger, and we know where Yoda says anger goes. However, I believe overall the forum does a great job of being as warm and open of a place as possible with so many gathered in one location. Much more so than I’ve seen in other corners of the web. I hope you have continued to feel welcomed or will in the near future. :relaxed:

Ahhh, memories. There was also Wizard’s Choice which I only vaguely remember, but it was quite the experience.

I honestly think it’s far less productive bickering back and forth. I support the policy about flagging posts so moderators can review it and everyone can move forward instead of devolve into insults and escalate from there. Furthermore, in my experiences, flagged posts have usually deserved to be flagged. Opinions may vary on that, but that’s been what I’ve witnessed.

I’ll mention one caveat specifically in defense of some of the non-extreme sensitivity (there’s never an excuse for incidents like death threats, and I hope no one here has experienced something like that): not all of it is that sensitive. Fans can be jerks to people who have fair criticisms, true. But it goes both ways. I’ve also seen many “critics” who were just being plain douches getting called out for their rude, hurtful and unproductive commentary who then turned around pissed about the supposed encroachment on their holy rights to their opinion. And yeah, have opinions. But there’s plenty of respectful, non-entitled ways of phrasing criticism that doesn’t result in being ganged up on by the fans quite as frequently. It’s not just about defending the work they love. There are real, feeling human beings writing these works. More often than not, fans are trying (however misguidedly) to defend the authors rather than somehow protect only their own opinions. But I can’t say the same for those adamantly defending the spiteful flipside.

Whole-heartedly agree. Love is not accepting good enough when it could be truly excellent. That’s why I said earlier criticism has a place in positivity. It’s a huge positive to grow.

I found CoG as a young child too. And I legally drink in a few months…do we win awards now? :grin:

I wouldn’t be so quick to speak for other forum goers about what their opinion is. Our self-image is our own worst critic. Far more often, it doesn’t align with reality.

I wouldn’t call it an issue; it just is–to me anyways. Writers should write for themselves, but they should also keep in mind their audiences. At the end of the day, traditional success comes from the readership willing to pay for your product. It doesn’t really matter how awesome a story is or is not (as far as extrinsic value goes) if it’s not reasonably suitable for the audience it’s sold to. There are always break out successes or authors that are willing to take whatever L for their vision despite the possible losses in visibility, but in general, there will never be only one story an author could create, one way of writing said story and one shelf it could hit. It’s on writers to find the most comfortable compromise, find a more prime market or know their reasons for doubling down and then have realistic expectations within the demographic.

What are your interests? I’m curious now!

Derek, Derek, Derek. Yes, being here a mere 4 years after the company’s conception makes you a veteran.

You know what they say. If you want something done right, do it yourself. I will eagerly await your addition to the HC library. :grin:

They certainly do! We have a great moderator team. Love the little corner of the internet we get to keep–for the most part–very supportive. (imo)

I was born in 1999. I suppose that categorizes me as babies. Maybe it categorizes you as someone who I should be throwing an 80’s party for. Or was it a 90’s party? Whatever the party was in CCH2 making fun of Crook and his super, über elderly-ness. I mean, I probably have grandfather clocks from my grandmother that are younger than you. :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

Godsend too. Some writers, even in the indie world, seemingly forget how tough the hustle was and wouldn’t bother investing the tiniest bits of energy in helping out their fellows like authors here bend over backwards to do. Regardless of where my own writing career takes me, I will never forget that outstanding humility and caring. I hope I can pay it forward as much as possible.

I’m glad for the age diversity we do have. A lot of sites way too strongly skew younger or older, or create pockets of age groups within the wider user base, and there’s not much intergenerational sharing/teaching going on at all.

You caught me. Hoot.

So many. Wish I’d been in on this party bus sooner!

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The dream is still there! :wink: I have toyed with the idea of a series of self contained romance games set around different locations and years in the 20th Century but which might reference each other indirectly.

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