SunRuanEr
 subscriber, 183 posts
Mon 30 Dec 2019
at 15:29
Etiquette Question
1) I think it's important to keep in mind that the holiday season and the middle of summer are periods of drastic slowdown for RPoL, and pretty much always have been. A game that you might consider "dead" in March will still be alive and kicking in December, people are just -busy-.

That said, I've found that most games have some kind of expected activity level posted in their RTJ/House Rules/etc. If a game expects 3 posts a week from its players, and a month goes by with nothing at all from anyone, that's a lot more indicative of game death than if a game that expects one post every two weeks from its players goes for the same period with no activity. By the same token, take the size of the game into account - a twenty-player game with a month of no activity is potentially on life-support because it's not likely that RL will bite twenty people in the butt at the same time, but a 4-player game with a month of no activity is easily caused by RL taking precedence for just four people.

Don't be too hasty to assume that a game is dead. Certainly don't do so after any period of LESS than a month. Someone who left a game after only a week or two of no posts would very quickly find their way onto the blacklist for a lot of GMs, I imagine. They certainly would make it onto mine. I would probably extend that to anyone that left after anything less than a month - it's not worth it to me to go through the time and effort of making a character with you if you aren't going to stay more than 30 days.

2) PM the GM if you're leaving the game. While others have suggested posting in the OOC so the other players know you are leaving, I personally disagree with this. Highly. Not only does it make it look like the lemmings are starting to jump ship (possibly prematurely, if you bail after a week or two), which might encourage other people to leave too, but the GM has every right to continue to run your character/find a replacement player for it as if you never left. If your character was highly involved in the game/game plot, announcing to the OOC that you're bailing has the potential to torpedo the entire game. Don't do it. PMs are the way to go - PM the GM, PM any players that you may have grown particularly close to (no one wants to spend years wondering what happened to that guy that just stopped showing up), but don't put it in the OOC for everyone to read. It's not their business, and it's not fair to the GM to say 'this game sucks because it's too slow, I'm out' where other people can see it and be pulled along for a bail-fest.

This message was last edited by the user at 15:31, Mon 30 Dec 2019.

donsr
 member, 1782 posts
Mon 30 Dec 2019
at 15:31
Etiquette Question
 in my time here there  are  Games that should be dead, ebcause the GM'S rarely posts, but is very active on another site... there are games I am in that the GM'S have vanished...one, I fear may have passed?  we'll never know.

 another  game, of a GM from another site..he  vanishes  for long  periods, but when he is able, he comes back ...it would be nice   for a  short quick post "  I'll be gone for a while"

 other games  are  dead... but stay up for whatever reason... I have mentioned elsewhere I  offer the  players whom I have ha d good   interactions with to my games... with the Caveat  that we all return to the 'old' game, if the GM  comes  back.

 In the end? It comes down to you as a player?  Tired  of waiting?..leave….send a PM to  the GM...

 as a GM, your game isn't dead, unless you   cast it aside... when I look at 'players  wanted' , the first thing I check is 'deleted  games' if there  are alot, there is nio use  signing up, nil matter who interesting the currant game is.
Z.Dianli
 member, 19 posts
 What goes...
 ...in here?
Mon 30 Dec 2019
at 23:46
Etiquette Question
donsr:
... when I look at 'players  wanted' , the first thing I check is 'deleted  games' if there  are alot, there is nio use  signing up, nil matter who interesting the currant game is.


This is wisdom I will definitely incorporate. A very nice rubric indeed!
evileeyore
 member, 268 posts
 GURPS GM and Player
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 04:04
Re: Etiquette Question
donsr:
as a GM, your game isn't dead, unless you   cast it aside... when I look at 'players  wanted' , the first thing I check is 'deleted  games' if there  are alot, there is nio use  signing up, nil matter who interesting the currant game is.

That not the metric you think it is.  Many GMs 'scrape and reuse', which mean they might have zero deleted games, despite burning their game game every other month.  I've been keeping a list of GMs that sign up a game and bail on it fast, and I've seen the same couple of names pop up every few months or so with no deleted games to their roster.

Also, if they have 10 delete games that all lasted 3+ years with 50k+ posts each?  I'm in.
donsr
 member, 1789 posts
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 04:11
Re: Etiquette Question
maybe.. but you won't see many with that many posts , that are dead.? Its a good  rule of thumb for me. ..if I am goign to us emy time to join a game, I don't want it  to crumble , before the 'table setting' is done.
gmpax
 member, 1154 posts
 {insert witty quote here}
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 04:28
Re: Etiquette Question
donsr:
maybe.. but you won't see many with that many posts , that are dead.?

I've got one.  Way over 50K posts, too.  Assuming it shows up at all, anyway.

It was a PvP "Arena", epic level D&D 3.5E; it died because the players all just moved on to other things.  :)
donsr
 member, 1790 posts
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 04:34
Re: Etiquette Question
 I can see that with an arena  game where it  would be   fighting and Dice rolls...our  game   e=involves  RP as well   as the fighting,character growth , interaction?..players   still move on..some join and  can't  seem to get in the flow and quit...the  game is set up  for   players and their characters to learn as you play.. don't get many  folks  sign up, but   I have a strong core  of good RP  folks.

 In the  end? its  what you like. there are 1oos  of games here. finding one that will last is the tricky thing.
Gaffer
 member, 1591 posts
 Ocoee FL
 45 yrs of RPGs
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 05:31
Re: Etiquette Question
When it goes two weeks without the GM logging on or explaining, I get worried. I'll post a private message to him/her.

After 30 days I figure it's a former game.

When I've given it up for certain, I post a private message asking to be removed from the game. One week later, I ask the moderators to remove me from the game.
facemaker329
 member, 7142 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 08:19
Re: Etiquette Question
I don't think I've ever formally requested to be removed from a game due to inactivity in the game.  I just removed it from my sticky list.  If it stayed inactive and ended up being deleted, no sweat.  If the GM had given up on the game, then there wasn't likely to be a response to a request to be removed, and being in an inactive game had absolutely no impact on me as a player, so it never felt like a priority to be removed.

And, there have been at least four times where still being in the game paid off, either because the GM cleared up whatever RL issues had taken them away from the game and wanted to resume playing, or because another player in that game had either started a game of their own or joined another game and invited me to join up.

I have, however, kind of established  a timeline I follow in terms of looking for another game to replace one that I think has gone dormant and is dying due to GM neglect.  Assuming it was a game that had daily activity, I wait a week before asking in OOC if anyone knows why the GM has gone quiet.  At two weeks, I PM the GM to see what's going on.  At one month, I email the GM to see if they're still around and planning to continue the game.  A positive response from a GM to any of those means I'll stick around.  If I get all the way to a week after the email with no response, I remove the game from my sticky list and start looking for a replacement.  Games that are less active (like only updating once a week, or twice a month) have that timeline adjusted accordingly.

The exception is if I'm in a game that hasn't seen any activity from the GM in a couple of weeks, and I see that GM advertising a new game.  That indicates to me that the old game has ceased to be a priority for them.  At that point, I remove the game from my sticky list and move on to find a new one.
donsr
 member, 1791 posts
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 16:58
Re: Etiquette Question
 Like Facemaker   said , sometime  games   go dead, because the GM  'gets  bored'... or burned out"

  I have a  a friend I gamed  with for years. from Yahoo to here..and many sites in between ( the sites  died  due to hacking)

  Now..her game  is very..very slow.. we get one line answer... answers to out  actions   are ' you can't do that... you don't find anything..." ecte ct...

 so?   after agonizing  months of  a  dungeon crawl ( she is  busy in RL, but so is everyone else).. she  advertises   for  the hame, as well as   another game here  , the  real thing? she spends  90% of her time on another site, in 4 differant threads  with 4v differant characters  ...while neglecting  the  folsk who have  been in her  'game'  for years.

so?.that is the   weak link in my 'deleted games"..but I will still use that as a  measuring stick
DaCuseFrog
 member, 85 posts
 SW Florida
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 22:22
Re: Etiquette Question
Like others have said before, it varies game by game.  I actually just got back into an adventure that had been inactive for a year.  I had removed it from my watched games, but didn't ask for a hard delete.  I was excited to see it come back, because the concept was a good one.
donsr
 member, 1795 posts
Tue 31 Dec 2019
at 23:57
Re: Etiquette Question
we  were never  inactive...not even 'slow'.. we did have two player leave  a couple eyars ago  for RL  stuff... they came back  this pas year and fit in like   they never left.. there were story adjutsments, as  to  'where  they have been..but ti was good to get them back.

 sadly, we also had a  sister of   a player in England  send  me an email, because  her brother passed  away.. he and I even talked on skype , before  that got messed up.. but he really enjoyed the  game , asking PMs   for his  character  and  the miliatryy of this  world  ect ect.. we'll always miss him.
bigdaddyG
 member, 27 posts
Thu 2 Jan 2020
at 17:31
Re: Etiquette Question
Sometimes sadly it's players who can lead to inactivity. I got one game comes to mind. Need one simple thing and....still waiting. Though as a GM I'm on verge of saying it's dead.

Thought of that when thinking of deleted games. Keep in mind if the game played out then it was wiser to delete it then keep it going. Also true of games with under 100 posts could be never caught on.
facemaker329
 member, 7143 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Thu 2 Jan 2020
at 19:43
Re: Etiquette Question
That's true, although player inactivity can usually be overcome if the GM is devoted enough to the game.  Usually...but not always.

But if a GM goes inactive, unless they've appointed a co-OP, the game is done.  And even if they've appointed a co-OP, if the sole ownership flag is on the game, there's only so much that GM can do, because short of a message from the original GM giving the okay for it, the mods won't transfer ownership of the game, and that means that any NPCs or characters that belong to the original GM are untouchable...can't be transferred to other players, can't be deleted or renamed...the co-GM can post as those characters, but that's it.

And, speaking from experience, that's a less-than-optimal way to run a game, and if the co-GM doesn't really love the game, it's really easy for it to just die out of frustration.
bigbadron
 moderator, 15834 posts
 He's big, he's bad,
 but mostly he's Ron.
Thu 2 Jan 2020
at 20:11
Re: Etiquette Question
facemaker329:
short of a message from the original GM giving the okay for it, the mods won't transfer ownership of the game,

Actually, having the original GM message us to transfer ownership is pretty pointless.  It would be quicker for the GM to simply transfer ownership himself, since he would have to come to the site anyway to rMail us.
facemaker329
 member, 7145 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Thu 2 Jan 2020
at 21:48
Re: Etiquette Question
Good point.
Brianna
 member, 2206 posts
Sun 5 Jan 2020
at 01:33
Re: Etiquette Question
For me, it would depend on the game and how much I have invested in it.  There were a couple of awesome games (on another site) where I waited months, and even now after a few years if the GM and at least a couple particular players wanted to revive one of them, I'd be there (though I really don't play now due to health/medication concerns). In those cases, I knew the co-DMs of one were having RL issues (growing family, job changes etc) and I did talk to them occasionally, so I knew they hadn't totally forgotten us.  Unfortunately by the time they had a little more time, almost all the other players had moved on.  With the other I knew it was iffy, the GM had a history of coming and going, but when he was around his ideas were great, he had a co-DM who controlled his worst wild mechanics, and there was a core group of excellent role players who also participated.
Lauriebear
 member, 36 posts
 There is no truth. There
 is only perception
Thu 9 Jan 2020
at 21:07
Re: Etiquette Question
Can I piggyback off this?  As far as Etiquette on the GM side, how long is it proper to wait when a player hasn't logged in or Rmailed you (or answered your PM &/or Rmail), before you can go ahead and delete them from the game?

I do have a "rule" in place but it doesn't state after X number of days the GM will delete you, it just states to inform the GM if things are too much in RL, etc.

But, I am not sure if I should have put something in the rules stating a player w/o respond will be deleted after so many days/weeks/months of non-activity.

I'd love to know what others think before doing something I might regret or get in hot-water over with the Site too.  Maybe I should have been clearer?
donsr
 member, 1811 posts
Thu 9 Jan 2020
at 21:16
Re: Etiquette Question
for  my games, the fat movign as well as the slow moving, I give  folks a coupe days  to  post after one of my posts.

 If you ghost too long, the charcter is 'set aside' in away that plays into the game.

 If I send a PM  I wait a couple days..

BUT..i ask all players  to  give us a ehads up..OOC  or PMs when they will miss..and indeed RL may not always  allow for this, but somewhere , in two weeks, you can say.." hey/..I want to stay but RL has me".. or " I have to leave because of RL"  ( or even " your game sucks, i'm out!)

 I cut one  guy who hadn't posted  since August..I PMed him and  he said he loved the game  and he was interested.. I didn't cut him right away, mostly out of  the feelings  for a currant player who suggested he join...but?  no response  or even check in?.. I  cut  him at the end of the year.

 I do not keep lurkers, you either  are a Player or not?.. I have seen games where the GMs/DMs  were Nazi like. they want you  to post a certain way..do certain time posts ( everywhere for Dily to  couple times a week).. when a GM ties to be that  iron handed . I just pass.

 so? Laurie?  temper you game  how you want it to be. You are runnign it..its your show... don't be a Nazi...and don't  be a pushover...most important? Your  active players need taken care of, ebcause they are the ones who drive the game.
SunRuanEr
 subscriber, 189 posts
Thu 9 Jan 2020
at 21:23
Re: Etiquette Question
We generally put in a rule that states that after <X> so long without posting in a scene without prior notice of an absence (which varies, according to individual games' expected posting rates), the GM has the right to NPC your character to extricate them from the scene so they aren't holding anyone up. We have a secondary rule to that which states that after <Z> so long of not logging in without any notice (usually a multiplier of the previously-mentioned X), the GM has the right to remove the player entirely and NPC their character from then on.

That way, no one can gripe or complain if they put their character in a place where it has to be NPC'd so as to not hold up the game, or if they take an extended powder and get removed.

To more specifically answer your question, I think it depends on a few things:
1) Has the player logged in after your PM/rMail and still not responded?
If this is the case, I'd toss them immediately. If you can be bothered to log in and see that the GM has sent you a 'Hey man, are you okay?' message, and you can't take two seconds to fire back a 'Yes/No, life has been really hairy/whatever suitable excuse' message, then it's clear that you are no longer interested in playing in the game.

2) Has the player not logged in at all?
I'm inclined to wait far longer if it's a case of simple disappearance. People have computers that break, lose their jobs, get health issues, have family issues, get forced to travel on short notice, etc, all of the time.

People that are logging in when there's active posts in the threads might not have something they think their character needs to do, but people who log in and see that they've been directly messaged by a GM and don't respond are essentially hanging up on your phone call. Remove them. People who just haven't logged in might be (to continue the analogy) out of the house, and unable to respond.
soulsight
 member, 298 posts
 Reality is 10% perception
 and 90% interpretation.
Fri 10 Jan 2020
at 04:21
Re: Etiquette Question
In reply to Lauriebear (msg # 23):

I'm not sure what the formal method is, but I've my own way. I check the cast list to see who hasn't logged in for a while, and if they haven't warned of the absence ahead of time, I post as their characters to move the plot along. This is usually enough motivation that those not able/desiring to continue will ask to be dropped instead of ghosting.
facemaker329
 member, 7147 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Fri 10 Jan 2020
at 09:00
Re: Etiquette Question
Nobody's going to know what the 'formal method' is, because there isn't one.  The site is emphatically hands-off regarding how GMs choose to run their games, so long as those choices don't violate site policies and TOU.  So, unless you're running around deliberately throwing players out of your game on a regular basis for no reason whatsoever, you're not going to get in 'hot water' about what your policy is for removing players due to inactivity (and even if you ARE jerking players around and dumping them from your game on personal whim and without any reason, you're still unlikely to get in trouble with the site for that...but you're also likely to start running out of players to join your game in pretty short order...)

The only RPOL policy I can think of that might be applicable is, the GM makes the rules to his/her own game and as long as those rules don't compromise the site (such as ignoring the Adult flag standards and posting restricted content), RPOL isn't going to intercede.

That said, if your standards are too draconian and you dump players too quickly, you'll have a hard time keeping your game populated.  The flip side is, if someone's been in your game for a while, and set a pattern for how often they post, and then suddenly stop posting, you've got a pretty good argument for removing them from the game.  But how long you wait to do that is completely up to you as the GM.  If it's someone that's been in the game for a couple of months, I'd give them less leeway than, say, someone who's been in the game for half a decade (assuming the game has run that long), or if it's a player who has consistently been thoroughly engaged in the game, I'd give a lot more slack that someone who rarely posts more than the barest minimum or generally refuses to interact with the other characters in the game.  And, as mentioned, there's also a difference in how to handle someone who has been checking in with the game and just hasn't posted anything versus someone who hasn't even logged in for weeks on end.

If you haven't seen any sign of activity at all after a couple of months, I think you're pretty safe in removing them...if you've PMed and rMailed them in that time frame, you've taken every reasonable step to get their side of the issue and nobody is likely to make much fuss if you remove them from the game at that point.  If it's a really rapid-paced game and you haven't seen anything from them in a couple of weeks, you might be able to do it without anyone fussing, but I wouldn't recommend any time frame shorter than three weeks, no matter how hectic the game is, just because RL can, from time to time, throw a pretty hefty wrench in the works for people and your players may not always have the option to get back to a game within a couple of weeks of something catastrophic happening.  Some of my fellow players in one game got caught in natural disasters and lost pretty much everything...when you've been totally uprooted because your home was destroyed, checking in with an online game isn't likely to be much of a priority, and they really didn't get much time to post anything about it in advance.  So, yeah...I've heard the arguments that there's no reason that someone wouldn't be able to get online within a few days of anything happening, but I've seen it happen.  Personally, as a GM?  I'll let an idle character sit ignored for months before I even start worrying about whether or not the player's coming back, but I also run a pretty slow game, in terms of posting rates.  And I find it easier to leave unused characters as property of the missing player, rather than either deleting the characters or transferring them over to myself to keep them and their information in the game (if someone asks to be dropped from the game, I'll do it and hang onto the character as an NPC, unless it seems dramatically appropriate to kill the character off).  It's just that many fewer names I have to scroll through if I'm posting as any of the characters that I HAVE TO RUN to keep the game rolling smoothly.
Shannara
 moderator, 3840 posts
 When in doubt,
 frolic!
Fri 10 Jan 2020
at 13:24
Re: Etiquette Question
My advice:

If a player's absence is starting to affect your enjoyment of the game to write for or around them, or is slowing the posting rate while you 'wait' to see if they're going to maybe post, then it's definitely time to either remove them or send their character(s) off on an errand from which they may never return.  Ditto if the enjoyment of your other players is affected.

Communication with the affected players is, IMO, never a bad thing -- but that's personal opinion and not site policy.

As has been said, GMs have sole control of their games, save for posted site rules regarding content, and that moderators will remove players (not characters) from those games if requested (so long as they have asked the GM first, and the GM has not responded in a week).
Lauriebear
 member, 38 posts
 There is no truth. There
 is only perception
Fri 10 Jan 2020
at 20:37
Re: Etiquette Question
Hey everyone thank you all for your sound advice.

I am glad I came here and asked.  I had PM-ed the player and then sent an Rmail to them without reply, that was on 12/4, they have not logged into the game since 11/27 and last post was 9/8.  Now to be fair the game is what I consider slow paced, and yes in December it got very slow, I did take that into consideration.  The best was when you all said if it is affecting the game, and that opened my eyes.  So, thank you, something so obvious and I didn't see that!

I probably wouldn't have said anything but we are in another game together, I am not sure the player knows it is me, as my characters in both games are completely different while theirs is word by word the same (also, they have a habit of replying in the same "way" ~ hard to describe but I am sure you all know what I mean.  Some writers give tell-tale signs of themselves.) in this other game they are posting regularly and then a few days ago the player posted in the looking for players thread with a game they created.

I guess I was just a bit like taken aback.  Not sure why I was and then I wondered what the protocol was or what other GM's with more experience would do.

I guess the answer was right there in my face the whole time.

Anyway, I am glad I got some sage advice and it has been super helpful.  I hope you all enjoy your weekend and HAPPY GAMING!!!!
facemaker329
 member, 7149 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Sat 11 Jan 2020
at 04:29
Re: Etiquette Question
Yeah, stuff like that happens.  I still remember a game I joined, right at the start... the GM got us all through character generation, started 9n our first scene...and disappeared.  After a couple of weeks 9f no response from the GM, I started looking for another game...and happened across a Wanted:Players ad from that same GM, for a game almost perfectly identical to the one that had been abandoned.  At that point, I stopped worrying about whether or not the game would revive...