Community Update 3 - HL2 Plot and Server Direction

Hey everyone.

I know a few of us have been getting antsy in regards to HL2's direction. People want to know where we're going and what we plan to do, so I'm going to try and lay it out without spoiling too much and keeping it pretty brief for the sake of not having to read through one of my multi-paragraph threads yet again.

First things first: the server is going to follow a structured plot line which we've recently laid out and agreed to move forward with. Don't expect HL2 to immediately dive into the PHL2 direction of an event every weekend, but do expect the frequency of story progression to pick up greatly through the next couple weeks and after. This also shouldn't signal the end of the server approaching rapidly or anything of the sort; we intend on keeping HL2 running for as long as people are willing to keep playing. Nobody wants to keep playing just to experience the same old city experience that we've been locked down on for years now, so it's our intention to change that up greatly and add a lot for people to play with into the mix. Events in regards to the story, unlike before, are going to be announced on the forums so everyone gets a chance to make sure they can attend.

We wanted to start pushing plot right off the bat, and we tried, but having 50-60 players a day with so much player-driven conflict made it hard for us to fit our own plot material in there without stomping over what people were doing in-character of their own accord. Now that things have relaxed a bit and people have gotten their energy out, it'll be much smoother for us to move forward and get the server's story progressing.

Also, since I've actually been asked this a few times recently, we're not going to move forward with the concept of making the server outlands-only. If anything like that happens, it'll be a good deal down the line and a sensible part of the plot we've followed up to that point.

Last thing I wanted to mention is that we now have multiple developers working on our script, and we have some big plans for HL2 and Eternity in general. More info on that later on.

That's all, really. If you have questions feel free to leave them below.
 

Gangleider

speak into the shell
Roleplay Department Administrator
Jun 11, 2007
3,031
My biggest gripe with the way things are is that this feels like every iteration we've done so far. It doesn't feel like America, it doesn't reflect the launch trailer, and everything that can provide something different or interesting to the server is either locked behind a time-delay or red tape. There, I said it. I have trust in the team, but man, I have multiple characters across all factions and it just seems like it is getting pretty stagnant and stale.

I feel like we are falling into the same loop of cop versus robbers, with the annoyed screams of either side getting louder and louder before everyone begins to wonder just what the heck is going on.

But honestly, an announcement of the trademark 'wait and see' doesn't inspire much confidence. I'd like to do more, but even my ideas are scrambling to find things to do.

And so we find the server on the same map, with the same issues, and the same period of silence that comes with an announcement that basically announces that there will be an announcement. Please, give a few more nuggets of info- I think the players deserve that much at least.
I realize that hearing "we have plans" isn't very reassuring, and I can't speak for a lot of the lore stuff because honestly that isn't really my department, but a lot of the stuff we're working on especially in a development/gameplay flow sense are not fully fleshed out yet (I've only been back for about a month at this point) and announcing them prematurely would make us promise features that may get scrapped completely because they don't work as well as we'd hoped, or because we think the community won't like them no matter how much we try to refine it.

I have seen some of our storyline plans however and I think it'd be good to share them soon because there is some cool shit in there imo - I'll make sure something of the sort happens in the near future.

As for the server in more general terms, we do plan to start announcing some of the major reworks in a week or two, but I don't want to jump the gun on this sort of thing. I guess I can allude to one of them:

TnB has always kind of had a history of simply deciding on script features and then immediately implementing them, sometimes without much thought about how they'll work out in the long term. This simply boils down to the fact that everyone is good at specific things - creating cool script features and making something enjoyable from a gameplay perspective are two entirely different beasts, and this requires more than just technical knowledge.
An example I can name is how hard it is to earn credits right now, we have a black market system but people are struggling to afford anything. It also just isn't very engaging to interact with the economy as a whole, especially as a new player or someone without the right connections. There's no easy way in, no easy way to progress without admin intervention and it just makes for a lackluster experience.

If I were to make specific announcements now it would be too vague, and any timelines I'd give would be guesses at best. Just rest assured that we're aware of a lot of the issues going on, and I have ideas about fixing a lot of them, be that through gamemode changes to push people towards more engaging rp/gameplay or simply organizational changes.

Feedback like this is very valuable to me, so please feel free to speak up either privately or to just discuss it openly.
 

popo

computer banks to rule the world
Administrator
May 27, 2012
2,892
Im gonna see about disclosing some details about what to expect from what we've got planned but naturally that's a discussion that I need to have with the rest of the team first. It's also important to keep in mind that any type of main story or central narrative will serve to provide a structure or framework for freeform roleplay to still happen around. There's definitely some big stuff in the works (from an in-world perspective) but I just want to stress the importance that nothing, regardless how epic and built up, can replace the dynamic nature of RP at it's best. That's ultimately why I've stuck around at this community, for the unexpected and organic things that happen when characters with conflicting motivations interact, not the epic railroaded events.

Like I said, I'm hoping what we come up with will serve to enhance and test the relationships that all your characters have made with one another, and hopefully offer hard choices to be made too, but please keep in mind we're not only going to leave room for player agency and spontaneity, but will rely on it for this to be fun. I know I'm throwing around a lot of buzzwords here but I mean exactly what I say. If y'all (the playerbase) check out completely and slide into that mindset we've seen before where you're just waiting for the next big event to happen and put everything else to the wayside then whatever we come up with probably isn't gonna work, or at the very least will be reductive and just be us going through the motions collectively. Just food for thought
 

Flood

dark savior
Administrator
Jan 17, 2015
980
Also I’m sorry for the double post, but you need to be more active those of you in The administrator team That aren’t, Ive seen a few of you /never/ say anything publicly or on the server, that’s not to discredit you doing something, but it seems the community feels only a few admins are actually..apart of it and listening. And they shouldn’t be the only ones seen as that when your all equally involved.
This caught my eye and actually really ticks me off. You, nor anyone for that matter, can demand admins to be more active. People have jobs, school, lives and more important things to do than constantly worry about the HL2 server 24/7. I can tell you that EVERY SINGLE person on this team is doing something either in game or behind the scenes, so don't discredit that because they're 'inactive' or don't make posts on the forums. The amount of work being done on server right now is enormous; Gang editing the script, admins running factions and reworking them, and the team writing the plot, and more. None of us get paid for this shit, we do it because we love it.

I know you said you weren't trying to 'discredit ' anyone, but you were certainly saying something in that regard and that's very irritating to see. That's just my two cents though.
 
Oct 20, 2020
203
This caught my eye and actually really ticks me off. You, nor anyone for that matter, can demand admins to be more active. People have jobs, school, lives and more important things to do than constantly worry about the HL2 server 24/7. I can tell you that EVERY SINGLE person on this team is doing something either in game or behind the scenes, so don't discredit that because they're 'inactive' or don't make posts on the forums. The amount of work being done on server right now is enormous; Gang editing the script, admins running factions and reworking them, and the team writing the plot, and more. None of us get paid for this shit, we do it because we love it.

I know you said you weren't trying to 'discredit ' anyone, but you were certainly saying something in that regard and that's very irritating to see. That's just my two cents though.
I think your missing my point between be in active in the sense of engaging with the community and being active as in being around. It's hard for a lot of people here to keep hearing the same things then hear nothing. Idgf what people do outside of Tnb, my point is when their in TnB no one hears anything from them and we get silence past these post really flood, nobody communicates shit really past these announcements. Again, let me state it for the record, I’m not talking about people’s life, I’m talking about inside the community.
You Do this all the time though, but then wonder why the community isn’t sure when their told the same thing, again, and again, and again. Lmao.
 

Gangleider

speak into the shell
Roleplay Department Administrator
Jun 11, 2007
3,031
communication is something that will benefit all of us, that's why we're trying to make these community updates a regular (and substantial) thing. communication in general is something that we need to expand on further, i agree that it isn't always easy to know what's actually happening at the moment and who is doing what - we need to find a good balance there, so that we can both keep the community in the loop and not pressure admins into feeling like tnb is a job. we're all here to have a good time in the end, after all.

it's been on my mind for a while but there's only so much time in each day and i simply don't have enough right now, in time it's something i want to start directing a lot more attention towards
 

vegetal

vegetal lmao
Mar 26, 2015
2,907
I think your missing my point between be in active in the sense of engaging with the community and being active as in being around. It's hard for a lot of people here to keep hearing the same things then hear nothing. Idgf what people do outside of Tnb, my point is when their in TnB no one hears anything from them and we get silence past these post really flood, nobody communicates shit really past these announcements. Again, let me state it for the record, I’m not talking about people’s life, I’m talking about inside the community.
You Do this all the time though, but then wonder why the community isn’t sure when their told the same thing, again, and again, and again. Lmao.
how r u going to take a shit on the original intention of the thread by saying its gonna be the same thing when it’s a totally different administration team and the approach is way more transparent and hands-on. lots of people play and contribute to the community without tons of ooc presence, admin players included, plz do not be so negative and close-minded when you don’t even know what’s to come for sure lol

have a little bit of optimism about the direction the server is going to go in
 

Flood

dark savior
Administrator
Jan 17, 2015
980
how r u going to take a shit on the original intention of the thread by saying its gonna be the same thing when it’s a totally different administration team and the approach is way more transparent and hands-on. lots of people play and contribute to the community without tons of ooc presence, admin players included, plz do not be so negative and close-minded when you don’t even know what’s to come for sure lol

have a little bit of optimism about the direction the server is going to go in
took the words right from my mouth. ty.
 
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sky

your newest internet obsession
Roleplay Department Administrator
Sep 17, 2015
2,599
tnb is not a job but some people really want to make it one i guess...

anyways, Bozo Bozo , you're right and i suppose it slipped my mind that the last admin team (the actual leader of the server's narrative, for the most part) promised a plot that never came to fruition. to show that we're not just talking with nothing to show for it we'll push out something that gives some actual material to tease what's to come

the server gameplay loop is pretty much the same as most hl2 servers we've done atm, yeah. that much is undeniable but steps are being progressively taken on the plot side and development side to rectify this over time but i do have to say it's not going to be an immediate change. i have to admit it's been pretty difficult getting a server back together after it was very suddenly unlocked and pushed back to the public (without my knowledge for a bit since i planned on resigning and staying away) so there was no real opportunity to actually plan what we wanted to do before then. we're not exactly magicians and we all have things going on outside of this, so just keep that in mind

i think people will enjoy what's to come and that'll hopefully be proven right when more details come about it very soon. only hoping the burnout doesn't strike too hard before we get to it tbh...
 
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Fury

Administrator
May 28, 2015
460
I don’t think some people understand the amount of work that goes on behind the scenes….

I’ve said my peace.
 

gungus

gungus
Administrator
Feb 17, 2016
942
I think your missing my point between be in active in the sense of engaging with the community and being active as in being around. It's hard for a lot of people here to keep hearing the same things then hear nothing. Idgf what people do outside of Tnb, my point is when their in TnB no one hears anything from them and we get silence past these post really flood, nobody communicates shit really past these announcements. Again, let me state it for the record, I’m not talking about people’s life, I’m talking about inside the community.
You Do this all the time though, but then wonder why the community isn’t sure when their told the same thing, again, and again, and again. Lmao.

this post kind of irked me

idk where this idea comes from, I genuinely think our best admins are the least vocal about their work in the public eyes, and it'd be wrong to thrust them into addressing everything they do. Seriously, the best admins are the one's that put in their work solely for the server, foregoing bragging about what they're doing and telling the community every single time ''Hey I did this today for you guys because I'm a cool admin.'' that's just not their bag. If at any point you need to tell everyone else how much you actually do for the server, it feels disingenuous and like you're not doing something out of creative drive, but to some sort of idea that you 'owe' something creatively to the server.

As for activity, I frequently find myself seeing the best writers, roleplayers, and creatives aren't the ones that are on 24/7, and actually do something beyond dedicate every waking moment to TnB.

I don't mean this as shit flinging towards you, but I really want to put that idea that you brought up right into the mud, so I'm using you as a vessel to do that.
 

Bozo

Thread locked.
Moderator
May 21, 2011
644
The efforts of the team are appreciated. I am grateful for all the reassuring responses. We have talented, passionate members working out of love for the community. I look forward to the fruits of all your tireless labor!

Love ya'll.
 

Annoying Rooster

Zealot
Administrator
May 27, 2011
1,029
I suppose as a player, sometimes I need to just have blind faith that those charged with the powers they have know what they're doing and have everything plotted ahead of what I could contemplate to accomplish the mission ahead of them. I hope the admin/lore team succeeds in their mission and will try to enjoy every bit of it.
 

Glassfunk

Member
Aug 31, 2020
187
I don't know if I've already posted in this thread, I probably have so I'm sorry for double-posting (sound familiar?), However these are the 2 main gripes that have made me avoid TNB for the past 2 weeks or so (This may be through a fault of my own but I still feel the need to share them.)

1. It feels like every time I join the server, There is a good amount of players on, enough to RP at least. But, despite this while actively trying to look for RP I can't find any, So naturally I resort to "making my own rp", a great tactic and a very fun one, and then It's suddenly apparent to me that even if I did make my own roleplay, theres not really anyone who can engage with me, (probably because a lot of the players are new people wandering around in circles, or Just hiding underground/in the nexus. I don't want to RP by myself like talking to a brick wall so I just build for a bit, get bored, and leave. The summary for this one is that when I join I just feel like I'm walking around a ghost town somehow still full of people, keep in mind I'm mostly RPing as a semi-loyal citizen.

2.
I feel like a lot of the events we've been having so far don't really add a lot of impact, like until making this post I had already forgotten about that one apartment getting burned down with all the bodies and rubble, they just kind of happen for a week, and then we switch to a brand shiny-new map and it's like nothing ever happened. As I'm typing this I am beginning to worry this 2nd one is more of a personal problem, but it feels like the events are trying to speak to the players, spark conflict and RP in general, but it seems to just be wasted breath so-to-speak. The main thing I'm trying to say with this complaint is that the map changes being so frequent seem to kind of erase any story that is being built.
 

Flood

dark savior
Administrator
Jan 17, 2015
980
2. I feel like a lot of the events we've been having so far don't really add a lot of impact, like until making this post I had already forgotten about that one apartment getting burned down with all the bodies and rubble, they just kind of happen for a week, and then we switch to a brand shiny-new map and it's like nothing ever happened. As I'm typing this I am beginning to worry this 2nd one is more of a personal problem, but it feels like the events are trying to speak to the players, spark conflict and RP in general, but it seems to just be wasted breath so-to-speak. The main thing I'm trying to say with this complaint is that the map changes being so frequent seem to kind of erase any story that is being built.
Map changes are going to be WAY less frequent. We're going to try to get off C17, then stay on the next map.
 

Zenmaick

Junior Member
Dec 28, 2020
14
I'd like to see more xenian life-forms, especially zombies, venturing a bit too far into the living city instead of staying static in the CZ or the sewers. With all the people saying there's a huge zombie infestation I've never actually seen multiple banding together and breaking their way into the Grotto or an appartment block, let's say. ICly, 'infesting' anywhere interesting would make things fresh in the setting.

Make it easy to get a zombie flag, and let them roam a bit more freely. Let them band together as a larger force. The citizen roleplay you can have will be greatly enhanced, and so will the CIC remain occupied. Maybe make it like crimes, and only allow it when enough CIC are online, or something.

I'm kind of new to the server but I like the direction it's headed.
 

Kiako

New Blood
Aug 16, 2011
679
I'd like to see more xenian life-forms, especially zombies, venturing a bit too far into the living city instead of staying static in the CZ or the sewers. With all the people saying there's a huge zombie infestation I've never actually seen multiple banding together and breaking their way into the Grotto or an appartment block, let's say. ICly, 'infesting' anywhere interesting would make things fresh in the setting.

Make it easy to get a zombie flag, and let them roam a bit more freely. Let them band together as a larger force. The citizen roleplay you can have will be greatly enhanced, and so will the CIC remain occupied. Maybe make it like crimes, and only allow it when enough CIC are online, or something.

I'm kind of new to the server but I like the direction it's headed.
Honestly, I wish there was a better way to communicate with people that have Xenian characters. Might be nice to have a something like @, but instead of admins its ayylmaos.

Might make a thread on that later, actually. Call it /x.
 

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