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Subject: WW Forum Improvements rss

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J
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Aldie has mentioned wanting to create a subsite more focussed on playing Werewolf here on BGG, perhaps also incorporating some of the cassandra features into it. see the following thread for his post:

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/125579

How about we discuss some changes/improvements we would like to see? I asked ratpfink how he finds playing the game here versus other forums and I think his response is a good starting point:

ratpfink wrote:
jmilum wrote:
since you play games in other forums, how do they compare to the games played here? which forum do you prefer?
Ok, I guess if it came down to it, I like playing elsewhere more. Cassandra is a very nice tool for the mod to have, but IMO the forum script on this site is inferior to even a stock phpBB2 seutp. One benefit of playing on a dedicated forum with one game at a time is that permissions can be set up so dead players have full read access to everything. BG and GG teams can have their own private boards(sort of what Cassandra is just now doing with the communication system). The thing that makes BGG good is the game selection and the creative people modding and coming up with new mechanics. Scratch that, the mods make it great. The games I've played in here have been so well done, it really makes me feel inadequate as a mod. blush

So the reason to play elsewhere is mostly just "interface" related, and only a tiny bit "voting mechanic" related.


anyone have anything else to add?
 
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I'm just going to re-post what I posted there, here. And add, bring on those ideas, people, let's make it happen!

...

I think it's a great idea. Huzzah for Aldie!

It got me to thinking about some possible feature additions:

moderator controls the thread

- Disallow deleting of posts
- Disallow editing of posts
- Lock thread - no posting by anyone (e.g. at night)
- "allow list" for posting, that is, posting is allowed only for live players (no zombies zombie , no ninjas ninja , etc.)

automation

- Automatic thread lock at dusk.
- Automatic post at certain time (e.g. "[dusk]")

Sidebars

- player list
- player status (live/dead, D2 lynch, N4 kill, ...)
- vote tally as of time _____
- vote log
- next lynch deadline

Player notes

- player comments and reminders, visible only by them
- workspace for jotting notes
 
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John Valvard
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As someone who mods more complex games, I would love it if each player had their own status board when they log in.

Showing (for each game, game to be selected from list of options) -
All posts
All private messages
All items/abilities/options/status
Vote tally current and previous days, with dusk/dawn times
Player list and time of death

Obviously, there would need to be a way to lock in external mechanics/engines to the site which could extract pertinent data (eg night actions, item passes), process according to the game's mechanic, and then push the results back in. I'm NOT a knowledgeable tech person, but if the interface were transparent, it should not be too hard to adapt one game's input/output to another. Obviously, building any such external engine would be entirely up to the mod.

I am concerned that over-rigid automation of a ww site would lead to a diminution of the mechanics that would be possible. As a simple example, it would always be necessary to have vote tallies turned off, for any games where vote strength was variable, or vote immunity meant that votes would be reassigned, for example.
 
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rey jr
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A forum mechanic who allow dead player to read the whole game, all roles, and PMs...
Some may say that this could interfere on his bluffs in later games, but to newbie players ( \o/ ) is awesome to know the intrigues, the lies and all that go behind the courtains...

That's a feature that I can remember now...
 
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Karl Schmit
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Pharaz wrote:
A forum mechanic who allow dead player to read the whole game, all roles, and PMs...
Some may say that this could interfere on his bluffs in later games, but to newbie players ( \o/ ) is awesome to know the intrigues, the lies and all that go behind the courtains...

That's a feature that I can remember now...

Could you add the dead-player as a co-moderator on Cassandra? At least as a mod I almost always grant a request for the role list to dead players.

---

One forum improvement I would like to see is the addition of a
this is the link
BBcode, to make nice looking hyperlinks and not http://blahblahblahblah/longlong/~##*&#&$^$#/longlonglonglon...
 
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ratpfink wrote:
Could you add the dead-player as a co-moderator on Cassandra?


sure, the mod can do this now. I have done that for people in my previous games: make them a mod so they can see the role list, and then take them out later. i don't think this should be an automatic action though. but any mod is free to do this now, just be aware that the person will then have free reign to much things up.
 
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Damien Browne
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Interfaces. If I could have anything, I'd ask for three separate types.
Type 1. The user interface. This can be like Javal's status board.
It would tell you:
Which games are in sign up, by title and/or moderator.
Which games you are in, indicated in a similar manner to Cassandra.
Which games you moderate with a slightly different indicator.
Which games have PMs awaiting, again, similar to Cassandra.
Your status in each game (dead/alive/special comment by mod)
You can set 'watch lists' for players and moderators.
If you click a player name you can see all games any player is currently signed up for.

If you click on any of these games you go to the game interface.
It shows you current vote tally, and your status, and your equipment and/or skills in a sidebar. It has the main thread in the main area.
There is a button to vote, if you wish to use it, you can click on it, and type the name you vote for - it sends the vote to the game thread and records it in the automatic tally system.
There is a button to post, one to reply to a player, and one to review posts by any specific player. There is a button to PM a player which is blanked out if you are not permitted.
There is a button to PM to your team.
There are other useful buttons as deemed useful.

Automatic preview before posting for any post with nested quotes or quoted posts. (This fixes most editing occurances but I think I dream too much.) If the game interface could manage quotes better in a different way, I'd be just as happy.

Then there is the moderator's manager interface.
It has a link to the game interface, so he can review the thread similar to a player.
But in the moderator's interface, there is a panel for every player, their status, skills, role, equipment - all of these are modifiable.
There is a field for temporary and permanent effects. There is a button to PM them separately, and a button to PM each team in play. You can use this interface to read any or all PMs from or to any player in this game.
Also there is a button to write night orders, which comes up with a single window with a panel for every player. You type the orders into every panel, then hit finished and it sends each PM separately to the right player.
Also in the moderator interface are useful buttons like "Lock/Unlock thread" - when you click it, no player can post until it is unticked.
You can set the time for the next lynch, or dawn, or set and forget it.
There is a button to adjust the vote tally, before the lynch.
There is a button to run the lynch.
This brings up a panel where you type in the flavour text, check that the tally is appropriate. Then it posts for you the tally following your flavour, followed by "PLAYER Z IS KILLED".
There are more useful buttons for the moderator as appropriate.

The last interface is to create a new game in signup.
It lets you choose how many players, or unlimited until you close, it lets you set or change the beginning date. It lets you set if roles will be revealed on death.
It gives you a place to give the flavour/theme/rulesets.
It automatically monitors the players who sign up or drop out. It talks back to the user interfaces to match what games are coming up and who is in what game.
You can set automatic vote tally system, you can set lynch times, and what panels will be available to players.
When you begin the game (by clicking the BEGIN button) you can assign, or automatically assign the roles based on roles you choose to include (this is another field you can set.)
The interface hides all/any variables from players.

Moderator panel ideas can include...
For moderators, they could have a page to manage the outside elements of the game - set player statuses, view all PMs to all players by any player, adjust skill sets (if they gain one, or lose one), add or remove equipment, or even modify vote strength, or create immunity to votes, etc.
These skills can then be automatically reflected in the automatic vote tallier.

Basically, I want the ultimate interface - so that you can create ANY werewolf game with creative rules and multiple teams (I've used 4 teams already, could go with more) and still be able to have the interface cover it.

I want to be able to just see at a glance who has which potions, expire them, create them, pass artifacts around, spend cash, etc.
At the same time, I need to see who's asking questions or putting in night orders. I need to be able to send night orders at the same time.

Anyway, just a few thoughts.
 
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Damien Browne
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You know, if these interfaces were part of a downloaded client, how good for bandwidth would THAT be for the geek.

 
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bluebehir wrote:
Automatic preview before posting for any post with nested quotes or quoted posts.


that's called hitting the Preview button
 
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Damien Browne
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yeah but most people don't. Even I don't anymore!
 
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bluebehir wrote:
yeah but most people don't. Even I don't anymore!


That is called 'Operator Error'. you cannot engineer a system to correct for all types of that. some people would find an auto-preview annoying and then one that only went when your post contained a quote doubly so as it would then be inconsistent.
 
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Damien Browne
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Okay. So ditch that bit. But the other ideas. They're ok?
 
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bluebehir wrote:
Okay. So ditch that bit. But the other ideas. They're ok?


blush well, ummm. you know how you write lots of stuff. i was only able to read that part so far. take me a while to digest the rest, i skimmed only. i will read the rest in a bit

sorry to be negative first up.
 
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bluebehir wrote:

Type 1. The user interface. This can be like Javal's status board.
It would tell you:
Which games are in sign up, by title and/or moderator.
Which games you are in, indicated in a similar manner to Cassandra.
Which games you moderate with a slightly different indicator.
Which games have PMs awaiting, again, similar to Cassandra.
Your status in each game (dead/alive/special comment by mod)
You can set 'watch lists' for players and moderators.
If you click a player name you can see all games any player is currently signed up for.


we have all this now except for the watch lists now right? or you just want it formatted differently

Quote:
If you click on any of these games you go to the game interface.
It shows you current vote tally, and your status, and your equipment and/or skills in a sidebar.


this would have to be made as generic as possible, and not visible by default as most games will not use it. or perhaps have the role pm info in here?

Quote:
There is a button to vote, if you wish to use it, you can click on it, and type the name you vote for - it sends the vote to the game thread and records it in the automatic tally system.


it should have the names pickable, not user entered. that would cut down on data entry errors

Quote:
There is a button to post, one to reply to a player, and one to review posts by any specific player. There is a button to PM a player which is blanked out if you are not permitted.
There is a button to PM to your team.
There are other useful buttons as deemed useful.


i like the idea of a posts per player embedded within the actual post listing and not just pickable from a separate page.

one problem i see with merging stuff into bgg proper as a subsite, is that tish and i will lose some control and access. currently we are able to make changes and fix problems pretty easily and usually quickly. aldie is much busier w/ the main site and our subsite would just be a very small, minor thing to bgg as a whole and so less important to maintain/expand.

i'll read the rest tomorrow.
 
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Tom Thingamagummy
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jmilum wrote:
ratpfink wrote:
Could you add the dead-player as a co-moderator on Cassandra?


sure, the mod can do this now. I have done that for people in my previous games: make them a mod so they can see the role list, and then take them out later. i don't think this should be an automatic action though. but any mod is free to do this now, just be aware that the person will then have free reign to much things up.


Actually, if the Moderator has set up all the information, could a player have the option upon death to view the Game Thread and see all information? I know some players (like me) want to follow along and NOT know, while others want to know after dying. If there was an option in Cassandra for the player to "see all roles" with a confirmation "are you sure?" that would probably do nicely than making them a Moderator.

Hmm... maybe the button should be "Reveal All" which, if you are alive, will give you an error message like, "Cassandra sees you have not reached the Elysium fields." And if you are dead, then have a message like, "Are you sure you want Cassandra to reveal the secrets of this game?" But I don't think players who aren't in the game should have access to this.

Just my two cents, but a great idea!
 
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arkibet wrote:
Hmm... maybe the button should be "Reveal All" which, if you are alive, will give you an error message like, "Cassandra sees you have not reached the Elysium fields." And if you are dead, then have a message like, "Are you sure you want Cassandra to reveal the secrets of this game?" But I don't think players who aren't in the game should have access to this.


i would be a little leery or giving anyone not alive in the game the ability to see all of the secret information. there are many mods that do not give ANY info to dead players.

 
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I have a game concept that would require PMing without identity revelation. Currently, the only way to do this is to deidentify through the moderator.

Would it be possible to do anonymous PM forwarding? i.e. Allow players to communicate without revealing who they are. Or chat rooms between players but that do not reveal identity.

If this could be automated then it could make for an additional layer of intrigue that would not be dependent on the moderator.
 
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I think a feature I would like to see is a form of separation:

1. "Live" list where one can play the games ...

2. "Finished" list for those games that are done, but can still be looked at or commented on with game end thoughts ...

3. "Upcoming Games"

4. "Werewolf Game Mechanics, Terms, etc."

5. "Game Rules and Sign-up" Some Mods like to list a game with its rules and such and then play the game in another thread expecially when the rules and such are extensive for the larger games.

I think, at times, my biggest frustration is when I am not on my own computer where I bookmark the game threads I am in, looking through everything that is listed on the Werewolf page, when there is a lynch/nightorder deadline.

I think also that when I want to look for a new WW game to play, its in a separate place that I don't have to trip over the other games that are finished or still in progress.

I know it can be done with the php format for boards since I do this with one of my own.

Just a thought.
 
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acekim wrote:
Would it be possible to do anonymous PM forwarding? i.e. Allow players to communicate without revealing who they are. Or chat rooms between players but that do not reveal identity.


I have an idea of how to make that work w/ the cassandra chat system: we could have an alias assignable by the mod for each player. this should be simple to add to the current system.

if the alias was set, then that will be the name shown in the room, if not set, then it would just use the players real name. would that work for you?
 
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TheArchAngel wrote:
2. "Finished" list for those games that are done, but can still be looked at or commented on with game end thoughts ...

3. "Upcoming Games"

5. "Game Rules and Sign-up" Some Mods like to list a game with its rules and such and then play the game in another thread expecially when the rules and such are extensive for the larger games.


we have this currently with cassandra, is that presentation ok?

Quote:
4. "Werewolf Game Mechanics, Terms, etc."


this would be best a s a pinned thread so that it could be easily updatable and found


Quote:
I think, at times, my biggest frustration is when I am not on my own computer where I bookmark the game threads I am in, looking through everything that is listed on the Werewolf page, when there is a lynch/nightorder deadline.


your cassandra player page shows every game you are currently playing, have you tried using that?

Quote:
I think also that when I want to look for a new WW game to play, its in a separate place that I don't have to trip over the other games that are finished or still in progress.


this is also currently handled by cassandra w/ the Signup table

 
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acekim wrote:
I have a game concept that would require PMing without identity revelation. Currently, the only way to do this is to deidentify through the moderator.

Would it be possible to do anonymous PM forwarding? i.e. Allow players to communicate without revealing who they are. Or chat rooms between players but that do not reveal identity.

If this could be automated then it could make for an additional layer of intrigue that would not be dependent on the moderator.


I was thinking, if you wanted this to be actual PM's rather than using the Chat system, I could set it up so that you could send PM's from the Cassandra Account.
 
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*laughs softly*

I understand that most of those features are currently in Cassandra, but you and I both know that Cassandra does not like the Opera Browser which is the only one that my system seems to like without crashing me all the time. Hopefully, I'll be able to find one that won't kill my comp all the time if I use it.

Any suggestions?
 
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TheArchAngel wrote:
Any suggestions?


are you using the latest version of Opera? I just tried the site w/ v. 9.02 and both login options worked fine.
 
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John Valvard
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jmilum wrote:
acekim wrote:
Would it be possible to do anonymous PM forwarding? i.e. Allow players to communicate without revealing who they are. Or chat rooms between players but that do not reveal identity.


I have an idea of how to make that work w/ the cassandra chat system: we could have an alias assignable by the mod for each player. this should be simple to add to the current system.

if the alias was set, then that will be the name shown in the room, if not set, then it would just use the players real name. would that work for you?

I was going to ask for this as well, and your suggestion seems like a great idea.
Reservoir Dogs anyone? Who wants to be Mr Pink?
 
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Javal wrote:
jmilum wrote:
acekim wrote:
Would it be possible to do anonymous PM forwarding? i.e. Allow players to communicate without revealing who they are. Or chat rooms between players but that do not reveal identity.


I have an idea of how to make that work w/ the cassandra chat system: we could have an alias assignable by the mod for each player. this should be simple to add to the current system.

if the alias was set, then that will be the name shown in the room, if not set, then it would just use the players real name. would that work for you?

I was going to ask for this as well, and your suggestion seems like a great idea.
Reservoir Dogs anyone? Who wants to be Mr Pink?


Definately requested. This has quite a lot of potential...
 
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