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A Reflection on Month 4

Shattered Rift

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I know it's only been a month since my last Reflection, but it feels like so much longer. I've had several ideas for roles while working on the Werewolf element of SparkWiki, but it was the idea of switches that finally persuaded me to host a game. It just so happened that shortly before my game I realized the need to be more directly involved in the community. This has been a difficult thing in the past: there's always work to be done behind the scenes, and and it's a simple truth that things can be slow on the front-end while they're being worked on in the back. (This was especially problematic with the Spark Game). So I think it was very fortunate that two other hosts fell through and it was my turn to MC sooner than expected.

I'd forgotten how rewarding MCing can be. It was just as time consuming as I'd remembered and feared, but it was the enjoyment that caught me by surprise. The switches bringing valid Day 1 discussion was a bonus. The game ending poorly was a disappointment. But most importantly, I walked away getting a lot out of it. Especially for SparkWiki.

SparkWiki has been at the front of my thoughts for some weeks now. The biggest reason for this is that it's a completable project that is constantly justified by a steady stream of releases. Search engine results, a factor that hasn't been relevant in the past, is attainable and encouraged through SparkWiki. Here I was, finishing up the powers section and getting the roles section underway (unpolished as many of the pages may be). I know that most of you are familiar enough with Werewolf that you're not using SparkWiki yet, but Rex caught a couple of hidden gems in my descriptions of powers, and new members should start benefiting from our on-site wiki going forward.

Coming out of my game (or maybe it was once my game started), I was completely focused on Werewolf. I was rapidly forgetting that some members of the community aren't big on the game. I had somehow gone from my January mindset of Werewolf being one element of the site to Werewolf being the site. I'd fallen into the trap I'd been working so hard to pull others out from. I'm very grateful to the two people who reminded me that not everyone cares about Werewolf.

So where are The Mansion and the Sparkverse stories? I'd hoped to have Episode 4 of The Mansion up on Saturday evening, but feedback during the editing process made it clear that it needed to be scrapped and rewritten. That's something I plan to work on today. As for the Sparkverse stories? They're getting caught up in the same delay. Writing's difficult, and I tend to get intensely focused on one thing at a time (Werewolf being that focus right now). I'm disappointed that I haven't been living up to my original plan of a weekly The Mansion release and a montly Sparkverse story. It's clear now that that that original release schedule was unfeasible, and the current release schedule is certainly too slow.

By the way, once Episode 4 of The Mansion is released, I plan to immediately follow it up with a Mansionverse role play. This is the episode I've been waiting for to properly set the stage for what the Mansionverse is, and I'm looking forward to seeing how all of you interact with it.

On the real life front, I finished rereading Children of the Mind. Normally, Card's writing is easy to get sucked into and I find myself losing several hours or a day reading his work, but somehow Children didn't have that effect on me. Going into it, the only parts of the story that I remembered were the bits about edge nations and center nations and an off-hand joke near the end of the story that was so emotionally-charged as to make it unforgettable. Everything else? I almost wondered if I had ever read the book before. Yet despite the feeling of newness, I still didn't enjoy it nearly as much as the rest of the Ender Saga. Ender's Game? Classic. Speaker? Excellent. Xenocide? Great philosophical points. Children? Eh. And that eh makes me sad.

I also rekindled my Sacred 2 addiction. It has an absolutely massive world (some 22 square miles), and that world is a pleasure to explore. I mentioned in a recent status that I'd explored 12.8% of the map. I think I'm up to 15% now. And that's at upwards of 30 hours of play time. I've covered more than that in past playthroughs, but it's been some years since I last played the game.

And that's... it. I had the chance to hang out with Bed on Saturday for the first time in a couple of years, and he and I played a bit of Sacred 2 last night. I've still got the usual dancing going on. But I don't feel like there's much else to say right now, and that leaves this blog entry a bit shorter than the others. Shorter when I feel like more has been getting done on the site. I suppose that's how it goes. Update the home page and I've got a million things to say; write a bunch of wiki articles, host a Werewolf game, and all of my thoughts have already been shared elsewhere.

Until next month!



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