Shades of Vertigo :: How We Got Here May 28, 2011 7:12:49 GMT -5
Post by Admin Roc on May 28, 2011 7:12:49 GMT -5
Confession time. Every forum has an origin story. Every roleplay has an inspiration. Everyone, and everything, starts somewhere.
In the case of Shades of Vertigo, it's actually two stories that collided quite unexpectedly. One is the story of a wandering roleplayer looking for a forum to call home, and the other is the story of a small group of friends who decided to try something a bit experimental and got better results than they were prepared for. The wandering roleplayer, in this case, would be me, and the friends are the primary staff members of a Soul Eater RP called Flickering Souls.
I'll spare you most of my history -- suffice to say I've been in the "game" of forum RP a long time, long enough to make some mistakes. One of them was the original Shades of Vertigo, a forum centered on an overcomplicated multiverse roleplay that never really took off, due mostly to my own blunders and assumptions. When it became obvious that the project was dead I went hunting for something new to try my hand at, something simple and fresh, something that brought RP back to its roots while also possessing that spark of greatness. And I found it.
Flickering Souls had all the elements of success to it. The forum's founders had broken away from another Soul Eater RP board that had become too mired in forum drama and had, simply, ceased to be fun for them. They brought the best elements of that previous forum with them to the new one and combined them with some ingenuity of their own. The roleplay system there had the (in my experience) unique distinction of requiring two roleplayers to work closely together, forming a Weapon-Meister team between their characters and, oftentimes, triggering a close friendship in the process. It was one of the things that quickly made the community very popular and successful. They further galvanized their then-small community of friends by giving them instant connectivity via a built-in Cbox chat system, a feature that was a HUGE joy to the community. I myself remember many good times and many laughs from what unfolded in those chats.
It was a great forum, with great people and a great atmosphere... initially, at least. I don't know what exactly changed everything, what dynamics were at play behind the scenes -- fear, maybe? -- but the "small group of friends" began to close in on itself, concerned that their forum had become too popular, achieved too much success for them to keep up with. First came heightened character restrictions, new unwritten rules that had only the most slim connection -- and at times contradicted -- Soul Eater canon; a temporary shut-down of registration; unexplained bans in the Cbox; an overall change in tone and demeanor. The final blow, an announcement of permanently closed registration and the total removal of the Cbox, came roughly a week before this very post was written. A door had been shut and a light extinguished. The community just wasn't the same anymore.
History tends to work in circular patterns most of the time, trodding the same ground tirelessly until people yearn for a new path. I don't know if this will be a new path per say, but I do know it's the conclusion of a cycle. Much like a small group of friends did before us, myself and others from FS decided it was time to move on, to take what we cherished about our community and build a new one on those ideas with our own hopes and ingenuity mixed in. And so three years worth of dust was shaken off the Shades of Vertigo forums, a fresh coat of paint applied, and a new impetus put firmly into place.
Shades of Vertigo will never close itself off from those who want to roleplay here -- our Free Roleplay Zone will guarantee access to roleplayers of all skill levels while our RP Training section will prepare and evaluate people who want to take part in the intermediate-to-elite level Soul Eater RP that makes up the heart of the site. We won't place blanket restrictions on character creation -- a graduated set of member ranks ensures that those with talent get the chance to use it at an optimum level. We won't remove the Cbox or police it any more stringently than the basic terms and conditions require -- we certainly won't ban anyone for having or expressing an opinion, for engaging in respectful debate, or for playfully trolling (IE: with intention to make people laugh, not to do harm). This is a community that aims to support, to find and build talent, to give people a truly FUN place to roleplay and interact.
And by jove, we're going to do just that.