The future of STAF

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    • The future of STAF



      So this might come a bit as a surprise for some of you and some might have expected something along those lines already.

      It's no secret that we have somewhat of a problem right now. A clear lack of attendance makes it hard or us to stay active in ensuring (bi-)weekly missions. In the admin team we have a little discussion for the past couple of days and we want you guys to hear the concerns raised and most importantly !comment! on them.

      The main issue we see is a general lack of interest. People seem to feel forced to join missions and therefore either don't join at all and feel the need to come up with excuses why they don't join (we have that now and we had that in the past) or they join but seem not interested in the activity at all. We wanted to provide our member a fun environment with a little bit of meaning to it. That means: While we have fun not as a clan but a group of friends we also follow somewhat of a narrative. That kinda came out of my head since I like telling a story with what you do (so blame me for it ;)).

      However, while our switch to a new concept (PMC style missions create by a Zeus rather than small scale combat disguised as a large scale operation with MCC) seemed like the right way we don't think it held up to the initial "hype". In the beginning, the whole Zeus concept seemed to be fresh and exciting and now people seem to care less and less.
      I mean sure, it becomes a standard quickly but what else is to expect?

      We get the feeling of a general disinterest in with some people due to multiple factors.
      It looks like people don't feel the need to inform themselves anymore. That results in some joining a mission without a clue what the idea is or even which mods are needed. The Forum - be it generally obsolete for talking - has always been the number one source of information when it comes to the server, the missions or the mods.
      This leads us to think what we do is not appreciated. Of course we don't expect you to praise us for what we do but showing interest and the will to inform yourself shows us that you care. A donation to the server, an offer to maybe try something new or giving us active input on your wishes helps us not feeling like our member take things for granted.


      At this moment we have strong concerns in the admin staff that things might not work out anymore. We hate to do that but if things don't change: STAF might not exist anymore - soon.
      You all know that we work hard for this community. We build it up for over 5 years now and we had a great time in the past. We always had issues like these but in the recent month they became bigger and bigger.

      We have two choices:
      - We change something
      or
      - We end things

      We want EVERYONE to comment on this post, be it directly here in this thread or via a PM to one of us (the PM will be distributed to all admin/mod member though). We want to hear from you, what is good, what is bad, why are we in this state or how can we get out of it. We especially want to hear those people that might have been absent from missions or that generally feel addressed in this post.
      We know we have some people that, despite the here mentioned issues, have a great time with us currently and I can't emphasize this enough: Thanks for the support.


      When commenting, don't hold back. Tell us what you really think. If you think we fucked up at a point, tell us...only this way things can be changed!

    • I said everyone is supposed to comment, so I'll do the start:

      You know I have been doing this for the past couple of years now. I have seen all shits already. We had times similar to this but for a few month I raise concerns now - concerns that this community might not exist in a few month anymore.

      In general I like what we - what I have done here. I have worked my ass off week after week to keep this clan together. The issue is, I feel that this work is less and less appreciated. As I stated above: I don't need people telling me how great of a guy I am and that all I do is god's work. But when people stop caring about what I do - why should I still do it? For the idea of having a somewhat functioning community?

      I love my work I do here. I always loved the clan (even though there were ups and downs) and I would hate seeing it end like this....but I'd even more hate feeling the need to get anxious every week end whether we have enough member for a mission or not.

      This thread is the last resort we have fixing the things that are wrong - the problem is just that I don't exactly know what is wrong.
    • I share a lot of Moony 's feelings. I feel as if some people do not give a single fuck about the community or the work that is put in.
      A couple of things that have been bothering me for a while and caused my loss of motivation lately:

      • People that almost never join missions, if 1-2 people of the 'core' group can't play or don't feel like it there is automatically no mission for the ones that do want to play.
      • People that say they 'cant play with us' and then play with different groups (There are different opinions about duo-clanning, but I am definitely against it when people skip our missions to play with other groups)
      • Refusal to use the forum. There is a shitton of information on the forum and effort has been put into it. It truly pisses me off when people NEVER read the forum and then come to me with stupid questions like 'what is the modset?' etc. Why does it have to be so hard?
      • Refusal to read announcements/comment on important stuff. It literally takes you a couple of minutes to read something and reply, but apparently thats too hard for some people aswell.
      • I have a feeling that most of the work that we put into this clan is taken for granted by people. I get that since we now do Zeus missions exclusively it might not be that 'special' anymore, but it is extremely demotivating to work on a Zeus mission for a couple of hours and then having people not take it seriously. We are not a bunch of clowns that are here only to entertain you, a community must go both ways. I am not saying everyone suddenly has to become a Zeus or whatever, but even coming up with some mission ideas, suggestions or constructive criticism (or sending any donations since its always a very small group paying the expensive servers) helps to show you are invested in the group and want to help improve it.
      • People that do not take the time to make sure everything works on their end/to make sure they understand everything. It is extremely annoying when people suddenly dont understand how certain mods or gameplay mechanics work when we are in the middle of a mission. There is a training server running 24/7 and there are always people willing to help you with stuff, make use of it.


      That is all for me. I hope people will truly reflect on what is being said here and help us keep this clan alive. I don't like threatening with leaving/ending the clan, but if there are only a handful of people that still appreciate the community it's where it ends for me.
    • I don't think it's that bad to be honest. We've always had phases with a lot of interest and phases with little interest. It just comes down to the player base. We have a couple members who are active all year, some who are active from time to time but still stick around for years, and some who join enthusiastically and after a couple missions are never seen again.

      Personally, I overall enjoy the PMC approach more than I thought and would like to see that continue. Although the Chernarus Winter campaign was arguably the weakest. Fallujah holds up but is so far just COIN, which we've seen a couple times. In general, I feel we're rushing campaigns. I wouldn't mind sticking to a terrain for a couple more weeks to months, maybe even having some sort of tangible progression on that terrain. Base expansion, sector control, stuff like that. Seeing that we actually make a difference with our operations. Also, grand campaign finales should probably be pre-produced missions and not just your everyday Zeusing.

      The optional midweek-missions for the alternative stuff were a good idea. For the main campaigns, I'd rather keep it weekly to bi-weekly.
    • From my experience over the years, like Pete said, interest times come and go, I'd say you'd be off wel opening up the community to a variety of games. This'll keep people interested in the community in general and if they see "hey one of the friends I usually play [Game] with is playing the arma mission, I might join in aswell". I wouldn't give up hope quite yet.


      (This coming from the guy who hasn't been here for a while because of exams #uitschrijfformulier).
      Why are forum signatures still a thing
    • I share a lot of Moony 's and Thom's feelings. Thus I won't repeat them here again. For me the motivation to play every week has declined this past month. This is partially due to the lack of noticeably approval of players.
      As stated by Moony, we don't need people to tell us we're amazing. (We know that) But sometimes a thank you might be nice. Though maybe my mood is just me personally.

      But as Pete stated, a campaign that worked like that might be rather fun and really spike my interest into Arma again. Will see if I can think of something cool that might be interesting.
      I do really like the PMC in general. Gives a different play-style and a bit more mobility in the campaigns that we have. I don't really want to go back to MCC personally. Though this campaign albeing fun, is a lot of the same so far. Which is not too bad, I like it but if people don't please tell us.
      Would also really like if people give ideas about a campaign or missions. This also makes it less of a hassle for the Zeus to think of everything themselves every week.


      That is all for me. I hope people will truly reflect on what is being said here and help us keep this clan alive. I don't like threatening with leaving/ending the clan, but if there are only a handful of people that still appreciate the community it's where it ends for me.
      Because they are awesome
    • Lemmy just refelect a little here:
      So there are two major things at work her. My motivation was fairly high for the past month'. It mainly came from the drive to keep this clan active. Seeing a steady attendance on Saturday and even on Wednesday was great. However, I also noticed a problem arising. With a lot of people leaving us we kinda lost this little part of what keeps us alive.

      Thom wrote:


      • People that almost never join missions, if 1-2 people of the 'core' group can't play or don't feel like it there is automatically no mission for the ones that do want to play.

      This is an actual problem right now. Yes, our ore group is rather active but with the lack of @Jeromer and @Thom recently it gets harder and harder every week. I wouldn't bother me too much if we wouldn't pay 100 € each month for a server. This kinda puts pressure on us to ensure that it is used....since it is also partially payed by member (non Admin/Mods) donations.
      This brings me to the biggest think currently though: The whole situation and the reason why we decided to talk openly about it is that - as can be seen by their posts - @Thom and @Jeromer are very unhappy with the situation currently - as shown by the thought of actually leaving. I can't really afford loosing neither Thom nor Jeromer in my moderator squad. This for me would basically mean the end at this point.
      That is the reason why we wanted to share our complains with you.

      So the thing is not that its yet another time where things are slow - we had these alot in the past and I personally just powered through the - but its that some might not feel its only "a slow time".
      The problem already shows in here: Some people are not even interested enough to make a post here stating their feelings about this situation.

      Okay but to leave that aside: Thanks for the input @IndeedPete. Back than you where the only one being kinda against the idea so hearing (and seeing) you enjoying the concept really makes me happy. About the Fallujah Campaign: This is exactly what we wanted from the campaign though. The idea was to not have something completely "story driven" and just some simple "security" contracts. Just PMC work. The idea was to show that even the ""boring"" parts of Arma (doing the same things over and over again, waiting for tasks and generally not being under fire 24/7 (though the two latter ones might need more improvement)) can be fun ... Arma is no CoD or Battlefield.
      Yeah, the reason why we ended missions so soon is basically we have 3-4 Zeus and at some point they get tired and lack ideas for missions. This goes to everyone: Currently we have no system of deciding who Zeuses a mission. We either hear from someone that he is interested or we just assume that someone who didn't do it in some time will do it. So if you are interested to Zeus one of the missions, just contact me or anyone else from the Admin/Mod Team and tell them that you'd like to Zeus the next mission. Its not a good system, but it worked so far! xD

      IndeedPete wrote:

      I wouldn't mind sticking to a terrain for a couple more weeks to months, maybe even having some sort of tangible progression on that terrain. Base expansion, sector control, stuff like that. Seeing that we actually make a difference with our operations.
      These are some nice ideas and we should definitely use them some more - good input again.

      IndeedPete wrote:

      Seeing that we actually make a difference with our operations. Also, grand campaign finales should probably be pre-produced missions and not just your everyday Zeusing.
      That is also very true...the problem is currently I don't know of anyone beside you and me that really dealt with the editor. So that kinda limits the source of the mission even more than our Zeus availability. But I'll keep that in mind for the Sandstorm campaign!


      The end my little Text hear: The only thing we wanted to achieve with this thread is to make people aware that a community can not stay alive without contribution from the community. You are not a member but part of everything. We listen to you and want your input and criticism. If we fuck up - tell us. If you like what we do - tell us. If you think @MichelsenDK should join more often the fucking cunt - tell him. ( <3 ). We need feedback to know if we do the right things or not.
      Missions like yesterday show me that things are still fun and I want to keep this clan together!