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4 years ago

What I've Been Up To Lately

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: PersonalPlansRanting The Site
Hello, Fig Hunter. As I've said many times already, I've been mostly avoiding this site recently, and I've talked about why that is quite often, too.

I've still been working hard at games development, though it's a pain that I haven't actually finished anything in far too long; instead I've got a load of in progress things that I thought would work but then later wondered whether they were worthwhile enough to spend the time and energy on. Essentially I've been experimenting around with different things hoping to come across some kind of 'ideal project', and postponing things that didn't fit the bill.

I suppose what I want most of all is a game to build a new community around... One which would be to me what Fig Hunter couldn't be.
However, I'm very, very scared that it'll be impossible because there'll be no escaping what's already been established.

I made Fig Hunter years ago, when I had a different kind of mind and different priorities... I tried to set it up to encourage certain behaviours, but was naive in the ways I went about trying to achieve that...
I mean, I'd always got frustrated by other forums where brevity and apathy defined the atmosphere and culture; I hated it because I wanted people to bond on a more personal level, to share their souls rather than simply writing one-line quips to show how abrasively witty they could be, and how little they cared. I wanted to gather people who thought, who *cared*, and who'd talk at length instead so then I'd find a place where my own willingness to share things about myself in detail would belong.

I tried to achieve this by practically enforcing 'intelligent discussions', though... By adding loads of rules and *rating systems* and character minimum limit things, all to really strictly enforce this kind of discourse...
What I didn't realise back then is that people have different personality types to me, and something that means one thing to me may mean something very different to others. What to me is encouraging subjective soul-baring and emotional bonding, to others seems like encouragement of formal, objective debate, and showing off how much of a genius you are and so on.

So what I think I ended up with was an elitist, snobbish sort of atmosphere; a culture that was built around this notion of 'formal debate', as that seemed to be seen as the most logical way to interpret the rules by many people... or something. Those that didn't want this kind of thing (perhaps including the kind of person I'd most want to get to know) were repelled by it; even my own girlfriend couldn't stand to post on the site because she found the environment too hostile and unforgiving. And that was years ago. (I also seemed to rant at her basically every day about something on Fig Hunter that was making me frustrated...)

I'm sensitive and conflict is toxic to me, so having everything I ever said questioned, argued against, or assessed really did get me down a lot. I found myself getting constant stress headaches; I couldn't go in the chatroom without some damned person or another criticising everything I said, poking holes in my expressions of feelings, asking me to rationalise them or things like that. Trying to knock me off the high horse that I never felt I was on.
I suppose the straw that broke the camel's back was the harsh response to the new sunlit look of the site, which I worked on in the first place because I was finding the site less and less tolerable. Since then, the very idea of becoming active here again has been making me physically sick. THANKS, FIG HUNTER.

Overall, it seemed like I'd made a haven for INTJs, rather than for INFJs as I'd originally set out to do (not that I knew what either of those things were at the time). I understand that many people did find their place here, and appreciate the site for all that they've found through it... and as such, I do intend to keep it going.
I've even fixed a bug with the bubbles layout that allows you to view it again, for those of you who prefer that layout to this one.

However... This isn't the sort of place that I belong at all, and I don't think I'll ever be satisfied trying to force myself to adapt to it, or trying to 'fix' it (which is impossible without kicking out the current members)...
So a lot of my time and mental energy recently has been trying to come up with various new communities that I could make instead, setting them up with a foundation based on everything that I've learned over the past few years.

My ideal community would be one built on friendliness and feelings, not on logic and debate. One where expressing yourself is encouraged, but in a soul-baring rather than argument-destroying kind of way. A community which encourages the *support* of others, or showing interest in what others think; one where you can talk about what you love without other people telling you what's wrong with it or why they don't like it or questioning or starting an argument or any of that stuff that drives me up the wall.

Perhaps I'll never be able to make a community like this... Maybe it's impossible, if I'm going to keep making the kinds of games that I make. Maybe they'll never attract anything other than 'young thinky males', and the testosterone-and-rationality-filled atmosphere that they bring. Or something.

But I am at least trying... And I've actually built such a thing! Sort of. Though it's not open to the public yet.
However, it will be based around games at least in part. Two games in particular, both of which would update regularly rather than being standalone sorts of things. One is the Programon/Miasmon game that I've been talking about recently; I hope that a community that encourages creativity and contribution will turn out to have at least some of the friendly and supportive aspects that I really want to see.
Another is a sort of FHO-like thing where you make your own short 'quests' in a fantasy world, for others to play... This, I fear, will attract the same crowd as this site has... and I do dread that a lot.

I realise it can't be pleasant for the mild-mannered readers to hear me speak about this community - technically including them - in this way... and I am sorry that I do; it's not fair, and it's not likely to be your fault that I feel this way about the place. The people who are responsible largely know it either because I've *directly told them so* on one or more occasions, or we just generally haven't got along when I've had the, uh, pleasure of interacting with them, due to different values and personality types and so on. It's difficult to really get along with someone who assigns great value to something you dislike, while dismissing the thing that you hold as most important. And so on. (Like me having a discussion with someone who feels that subjective feelings are for weak, immature people and that no discussion is worth having without there being an argument or debate involved; 'why talk about something if you're not going to be discussing it to unravel some objective truth or solution?', they seem to think, which doesn't play well with my getting-things-off-my-chest emotional venting...)
It's only really been a few people who've made this place so toxic for me... but it also seems that these people have a habit of sticking around regardless of how their presence makes the owner of the site they're using feel.

I really am dreading that these individuals will pour over to my new site as soon as it's made... especially since one of the things that people I don't get along with tend to have in common is a complete disregard for whether or not they'll be welcome; what they want is apparently more important than what I'd want. I wish I could simply ask them not to, but I'm doubtful that it'd achieve anything other than yet more toxic conflict...

So hmm. That's what I've been working on recently. Making new games for a new community that can finally give me something positive in my life, and a place where I'm comfortable and where I feel I belong rather than one where I'm constantly frustrated, while constantly fearing that it'll all be a complete waste when the very people that drove me away from this site come and INFEST my new home too... It's not an easy situation to be in for one who hates conflict and really, really wants to find (or make) a place to go to avoid it.

I've been wondering whether if I keep Fig Hunter alive, the people who drove me away from here will stay here rather than moving to the new site when it's opened... But I bet it's more likely that they'll just be active on both and I'll have nowhere to go. Sigh.

Now, I wonder if the comments on this thing will demonstrate exactly the kind of thing I'm trying to get away from...
5 years ago


◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: PersonalRanting The Site
How would you feel if you spent several days of non-stop hard work - and got a pounding headache out of it - on something that you felt really proud of, and eventually gave out to people completely for free, and several of them simply said, in response to your gift, "it's awful, I hate it"?

I feel sick.

I understand that not everyone would like everything I ever do, but the sheer blunt tactlessness of peoples' comments doesn't even attempt to take into account how I'd actually feel about their words.

Always from T types, of course...

I wish I'd never bothered. So much for this reworking of the site making me feel better.

Even if people make 'fair points' in their aggressive criticism of my work, I'm not eager to listen to them or cater to their wishes if they express their dissatisfaction so harshly.
5 years ago

New Site Version 'Beta'

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: Features The Site
I think I've essentially finished the 'new version' of the site now... which isn't so much a 'new version' as a cosmetic makeover. Though I suppose the removal of certain features is enough to make it count as new, and... well, anyway!

I've not yet finished every detail, and some 'minor' parts of the site like the Games page(s) and aspect list pages are a complete mess because I haven't looked at them yet. I'll work on those soon.

For now, though, I think it's safe, so I'll provide the link here and make the full switch in a few days (at which point the link I provide here will probably no longer work, and the new version will be accessible from the basic address).

Please be gentle, though... I'm under a fair bit of stress at the moment and tried to work fast on this to get it out of the way, so I don't want some teenage psychopaths making my life difficult again.
This is a gift that I am giving you all for free, which took a lot of time and effort, so, uh, please remember that.

Anyway, you can access the new version here: ∞ Fig Hunter ∞

I personally feel a lot better being on this brighter version of the site... but I'm also scared about letting people in in case they break things, so, uh, please don't give me reasons to worry further...