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 Post subject: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketing.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:32 pm 
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Its one thing to convince someone to install the server after seeing an advertisement; its quite another to get them to stay on the shard and become an active player. Retention is GREATLY increased with active counselors.

One thing that I believe in, big time, is counselors. These would have no power to create/edit items in game. They would have power to look for AFK gatherers though.

Basically what they would do is answer in game pages. Possibly even show up at events or in a town council building to answer questions. What this does is show that there is an active staff base. BLJ and the others have done a fantastic job, but in game pages are very slow currently. Its easier to IRC (which new players who just installed have no idea how to do.. I have a hard time getting new players that I help to figure out IRC and to message me).

Basically add two individuals that can answer questions, but cannot edit/create items. They can also help facilitate events or w/e.

I've seen player run shards with Counselors and they were always very appreciated by the community. It will definitely help player retention when a new player hits the help button and gets an immediate response.

Thanks! :)

***These are definitely era accurate...!

*****Perhaps the GMs are weary of giving someone who has a player account that kind of power. Power to spy on people or help facilitate looting houses or something (they couldn't create or edit items). Personally, I think there are people who could do both honestly, despite some bad egg counselors in the past. But, there are people who are trustworthy and that would be willing to give up their player accounts in order to serve the server.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:13 pm 
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This shard has needed counselors for a long time. I've discussed this in length with two staff members, and one of them who started as a counselor on this shard is without room for negotiation on his opposition for them the last time I talked to him.

Retention is pretty much the antithesis of UOSA standards. [NEW] is a scam. Newbies wait days sometimes for pages to be answered, and by then have moved onto a less worthy shard because of a hyperactive staff. IRC, typically the last resort for a newbie, is filled with trolls who will tell you to PM their favorite person or that rainbow colored unicorns fly to your house. While I enjoy all of these aspects, they're counter-productive.

IMO recruit 3 counselors who will forfeit their accounts and see how it works. If they don't work out, reward them their accounts back.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:12 pm 
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No need to forfeit their account. Counselors and mentors are very important. I've gated people I've pked back to their house, returned their loot gave them my invis gear and helped them setup a invis gear toggle, or recall macro.

I've gated newbies around towns and helped countless times with items or gear in order to help them get on their feet. Brought them to Delucia to get npc warrior then gated em back to their house so they could get their fighting skills up. A LOT of help can be done by willing helpers.

Something I would like to see, if possible is with the help requested feature. Maybe have it linked to a few people's IRC or some kind of in game chat. To get real time help for those who don't use IRC. So many times when I first started I had to ask so many newbie questions, lucky for me I had a group that always was there to help. I'd like to see the help requested feature do something similar. Or Page a GM tab or something.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:27 pm 
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WarmApplepie wrote:
No need to forfeit their account. Counselors and mentors are very important.


I very much think we need this.

Give them the power to only answer pages, broadcast to the shard, and reset the stuck button. Do not let them go invisible or have any sort of physical interaction capabilities.

Basically a ghost that can talk and cant go invis.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:43 pm 
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Starting small with their powers is a perfect idea.

Although if they still are not sure they want to trust counselors, I would volunteer to give up my accounts in order to do this. The items I own are less important to me than seeing the shard's population increase even more.

I believe counselors are a big thing the server is missing, and I'd put my money where my mouth is on that.

**I mean look how awesome things have become from when they added Boom?

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:51 pm 
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Counselors are something I've brought up with GMs.

I'm all for them. Limit their ability to do nefarious things--give them just enough power to help people and/or fire up pvp events like bagball. Eliminate any prize support for counselor events to make it fair. Allow people to assist new players in answering questions and answering certain types of pages.

Let's get a couple people to supplement the GMs. There's only so much I (or others) can do as a player to help newcomers. I have spent a great deal of my time mentoring new players and getting them going in the game. Some stay, some leave, but I can say without a shred of doubt that more would have left if I hadn't helped them along.

Pros:
- Less stress on existing GMs
- Great way to retain new players

Cons:
- Potential abuse

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:07 pm 
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If they are to be just frozen page answerers, that is better than nothing.

Having some counselors with zero powers who just sit in green acres answering pages would be great but I really doubt you'd keep them around for very long.

But, if thats what it takes to get counselors on here, do it!

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:13 pm 
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What's being suggested here is something that would manifest itself as a re-introduction of our companion system, where we re-purposed the role of a counselor to allow players to answer pages and greet new players. The system was shut down several years ago (some time in 2010 IIRC) due to some problems with its design, and any elevated level of access that we grant would exist under this system with the kinks from before (hopefully) ironed out.

This would not, unfortunately, provide access for companions to do anything more than simply answer pages and speak with new players, despite the desire for elevated access in a lot of other areas.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:15 pm 
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Kaivan wrote:
What's being suggested here is something that would manifest itself as a re-introduction of our companion system, where we re-purposed the role of a counselor to allow players to answer pages and greet new players. The system was shut down several years ago (some time in 2010 IIRC) due to some problems with its design, and any elevated level of access that we grant would exist under this system with the kinks from before (hopefully) ironed out.

This would not, unfortunately, provide access for companions to do anything more than simply answer pages and speak with new players, despite the desire for elevated access in a lot of other areas.


I think thats a great idea then.

How hard would it be to iron out the kinks?

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:17 pm 
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I can't really answer that, as I don't know how difficult it would be to fix certain issues.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:22 pm 
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Kaivan wrote:
I can't really answer that, as I don't know how difficult it would be to fix certain issues.


I guess a better question then, would be: Is it worth it to you guys to do the work to implement such a system?

I'm not the one who would have to do the work, but if my opinion means anything, then I certainly think it is.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:49 pm 
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I don't really think that question has been evaluated on our end yet. That's something we would have to discuss internally.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 11:09 pm 
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Kaivan wrote:
I don't really think that question has been evaluated on our end yet. That's something we would have to discuss internally.

Fair enough.

The community is rooting for you.

I would just like to see something along these lines. You guys asked for community development ideas :)

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 11:36 pm 
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I, for one, am completely in favor of the idea. I had a lot of trouble when I first started and, while the forums and wiki were of great help, not many are willing to put forth the hours of time needed to scan through them to find what they need. People who are dedicated and willing to serve the community, especially new players, can help level the terribly steep learning curve that Ultima Online, and our server, has.

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 Post subject: Re: Add Counselors. Retention is just as crucial as Marketin
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 11:39 pm 
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Kaivan wrote:
I don't really think that question has been evaluated on our end yet. That's something we would have to discuss internally.



I don't think you actually need 'counselors'. If they are just answering questions and helping players, as suggested, you could actually just open up the 'Page" system to ALL players and anyone that opens it up can check and answer questions and help players with anything they need, the regular way. This way nobody has 'special' powers, but they can still help anyone that needs it.

Thoughts??

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