Obsidian Portal Launch Feedback

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  • SkidAce
    SkidAce
    Posts: 830
    I prefer face to face communication where we can pick up on body language and tone...text has failed me on several occasions. I did have to read it twice (grin) to try to determine which way you meant it.

    I concluded correctly...we're good.
  • Keryth987
    Keryth987
    Posts: 1,043 edited January 2015
    I know I've not been as active around here as I once was. While I am working on a new campaign concept and utilizing OP for it, Real life has just kept me busier than expected.

    However, I've continued to pop into the forums and see what is up, and I must say it is discouraging. Long time GMs who I admired leaving, campaigns languishing, and other getting irritated (or worse). The community here, originally disrupted by the destruction of the Reforge (face it, EVERYONE had to fix their sites)is not only fracturing now, but disintegrating. And the reasons for this are those KillerVP has enumerated. Unkept promises and silence from the devs.

    I plan on continuing to use OP, but if I do not get some information on the Kickstarter promises soon, I will be forced to take steps I do not want to take

    I should add however, that the PDF Embed ability is TECHNICALLY available.
    see "Here":https://phoenix-rising-1.obsidianportal.com/wikis/rules

    I used the Media Embed button and put in the http of the pdf. Obviously, the pdf to use needs to be stored online somewhere for this to work


    Keelah Se'lai,
    Keryth
    "Shadows Over New York":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/shadows-over-new-york
    "2013 Campaign of The Year":http://blog.obsidianportal.com/2013-coty-shadows-over-new-york/
    Post edited by Keryth987 on

  • GamingMegaverse
    GamingMegaverse
    Posts: 2,997
    That is really awesome Keryth! Good to see you check in.

    Just trying to help out.

  • GamingMegaverse
    GamingMegaverse
    Posts: 2,997
    Did a quick search on the most active open help topics- All of these topics have not been solved, and have over 20 posts.

    "Searching for a Campaign":http://help.obsidianportal.com/discussions/problems/12375-search-for-a-campaign-functionality-post-reforge
    "Customer Service":http://help.obsidianportal.com/discussions/suggestions/906-customer-service
    "Searching Tags/Wikis":http://help.obsidianportal.com/discussions/problems/11441-the-new-search-tool-is-fantastic-but
    "YouTube Autoplay":http://help.obsidianportal.com/discussions/problems/12636-youtube-autoplay-feature-not-working-anymore

    Just letting people know what seems to be at the top of the users minds....

    Just trying to help out.

  • Belrathius
    Belrathius
    Posts: 206
    Just thought I would share this.

    After a 15+ year career in the computer industry, I have gone back to school for a business management degree. As I am reading material for the week, talking heavily about customer service, OP is ringing clearly in my head as an example - and not in a good way. And then I came to this line:

    *Nothing erodes a company’s credibility as quickly as promising customers a benefit and then failing to deliver on that promise.*

    _Essentials of Entrepreneurship_, Zimmer, Scaeborough, & Wilson, 2008, p. 284

    This is exactly what I see happening. It would be one thing to drastically change its service and product like it did in the Reforge, but to drop customer service basically all together AND fail to follow through on the commitments given in the kickstarter (essentially paid-for services), the OP staff is undermining itself far more effectively than any competitor could. And more quickly, too.

    It seems to me that they could really benefit from reading some business class textbooks, even though so much of it seems like common sense.
  • saethone
    saethone
    Posts: 153
    To be honest it looks to me like Micah and Jerry (?) got in over their heads and have likely gone silent while they arrange for the transfer of ownership of the site. They probably just spent a while finding someone to buy it. Hence the hush hush about what's going on, something like that couldn't really be talked about until the legal work was finished.
  • cgregory
    cgregory
    Posts: 780
    They have said on their FB page on January 23 at 1:18pm that

    bq. Obsidian Portal: I haven't deleted anyone's posts. We're not spitting in anyone's face. We should have an update regarding stretch goals coming in the near future. ~Jerry

    But exactly, what they consider the near future to be is somewhat iffy, considering they reserved a post weeks earlier (likely considering that they would be using that in the near future too).

    They are among us!

    image

                       XCom: Defiance - Campaign of the Month November 2016

     

     

  • RyanHeck
    RyanHeck
    Posts: 33
    To Jerry's defense, he's correct in saying he has not deleted any comments, unless I just happened to miss them and/or they were indeed inflammatory. That person's post had a very attacking tone and not helpful to anyone in this situation. We need to remain calm, while still putting the pressure on to get the answers we're seeking and to improve the communication channels.
  • cgregory
    cgregory
    Posts: 780
    Not really, what my post was meant to focus on. I don't really care what they do with their facebook page or peoples posts to it. I just copied their entire post.

    More focusing on the fact that on Jan 23 they said they will have an update regarding stretch goals in the near future. However, I'm guessing that needs to be taken with a grain of salt as they seemed to be implying that they had something to say a couple weeks ago (Jan 5th to be exact) when Dreadgazebo reserved a post in this very thread and nothing came of it.

    They are among us!

    image

                       XCom: Defiance - Campaign of the Month November 2016

     

     

  • twiggyleaf
    twiggyleaf
    Posts: 2,004
    Hi Dudes

    Just letting you know that I have signed up for another year of Ascendant Membership. I am just letting you know that I did not get an automatic notification. Luckily Travis19 answered my query quite quickly. I had previously been advised that renewal was automatic, but it seems that this may not necessarily be so if you are a REFORGE backer. (What, another REFORGE issue...?) Anyway, if you think your membership has expired and you wish to renew, check out the section underneath the "WELCOME" tab. There should be an option for you to "upgrade to Ascendant". This seemed to work for me.

    twiggyleaf
    CURRENT CAMPAIGN: "Mysteria":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/mysteria - set in Wolfgang Baur’s MIDGARD.
    Previous CotM Aug 2012: "Shimring":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/shimring

    "I met a traveller from an antique land....."

    CotM May 2016: Mysteria: set in Wolfgang Baur’s MIDGARD.

    Previous CotM Aug 2012: Shimring: High Level Multiplanar Campaign

    Inner Council Member

  • GamingMegaverse
    GamingMegaverse
    Posts: 2,997
    @ Twiggyleaf- Did you lose anything when you went from Ascendant down to Regular before that was fixed? That would really suck....

    Just trying to help out.

  • twiggyleaf
    twiggyleaf
    Posts: 2,004
    Killer

    I didn't appear to. Everything was still there. However, I didn't try any new actions at the time.

    "He can snap twigs but he can't fold space!"

    "I met a traveller from an antique land....."

    CotM May 2016: Mysteria: set in Wolfgang Baur’s MIDGARD.

    Previous CotM Aug 2012: Shimring: High Level Multiplanar Campaign

    Inner Council Member

  • Black_Vulmea
    Black_Vulmea
    Posts: 277
    "Soundtrack to this post":https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WBupia9oidU

    It's been quite some time since I even looked at my wiki - seeing my twice-broken banner pissed me off anytime I opened the home page. Today was my first update in many months and consisted of editing one word on a character page before downloading a backup of the campaign, with the goal of migrating the data over to another site at some point in the future.

    I'm not at all surprised at the way the reforge unfolded, because it mirrors much of my experience on this site since I started back in 2009. I learned pretty quickly that tinkering by the devs and a failure to address problems is the norm for OP. Does anyone else remember when characters weren't campaign-specific? I do, because when I created my wiki, I linked every page to the characters page and when that page was made campaign-specific, all of my links were broken. I repaired them page by page, only to discover that another change a couple of years later broke every one of the repaired links again, except now I have hundreds of pages instead of dozens, making fixing them a practical impossibility.

    Ever tried creating a hotlink to a wiki page with an accented letter in the title? It didn't work for years and years, and in fact I don't know if it does now, either, since I gave up trying and used a work-around instead. Because so many of the people, places, and things in my campaign are French or other languages, this was a constant pain in the ass. I filed at least two help requests for this, and never received a response, not even so much as, gosh, sorry, we can't code around that.

    Do you use the items tab in your campaign? It's the expanded equipment list for my campaign, but apparently it doesn't fit what the devs had in mind, and so it may go away altogether, the hell with what any of us have done with it in the meantime.

    This is not the first time the devs have gone quiet, either. Years ago they stopped responding as well, and there was concern among the dedicated site users that OP would fold up and blow away into the virtual ether. My feeling then, and my feeling now, is that despite winning multiple Ennies, this site never panned out quite the way the devs thought it would, that is, it was never the cash cow they expected it to become. They're not the first to discover that the surest way to make a million dollars in the tabletop roleplaying game business is to start with three million dollars.

    What they learned is that for every incredible wiki that you guys put together on this site, there are scores of campaigns with little or no content, abandoned in their infancy. The core of dedicated OP users is pretty small, and though their passion and creativity is often breathtaking in its scope, they just don't generate enough of a payday for the devs to earn this site their full attention. The relatively modest Kickstarter returns underscore this.

    After five years of repeated cycles of interest and disinterest, of failure to address user problems, of tinkering without regard for the effect it has on existing users, I don't trust the devs to sustain this site, and I don't want to see my investment wasted, because _I actually use this stuff when I play games with my friends_, so I need to salvage what I can and start again somewhere else.

    Mike aka Black Vulmea
    "_Le Ballet de l'Acier_":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/le-ballet-de-l-acier - swashbuckling adventure in the age of the Three Musketeers and Captain Alatriste
    Featured Campaign of the Month, August 2011

    "Really Bad Eggs":http://black-vulmea.blogspot.com/ - a blog about swashbuckling tabletop roleplaying games
  • SkidAce
    SkidAce
    Posts: 830
    I played the soundtrack in the background while I read the post...as intended.

    /grin
  • Bortas
    Bortas
    Posts: 645 edited February 2015
    "Soundtrack":https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KpqLYkQTIi0

    Hahaha - this thread needs more soundtracks with posts; including the devs, lol.

    -bort
    "Morwindl":http://morwindl.obsidianportal.com/
    Post edited by Bortas on
  • NikMak
    NikMak
    Posts: 379
    how about nowhere man?
  • GamingMegaverse
    GamingMegaverse
    Posts: 2,997
    @Black Vulmea- Hey Mike, you are missed here, and please let us know where you move your site. You can also give me a call sometime- haven't heard from you in ages.
    I am terribly disappointed that they missed their own deadline of January- again....
    I am suffering from a golden handcuffs issue- I cannot go down to a free site, as I need the space that ascendant brings, and it would literally be weeks of work to move- but if they don't begin to fix things even I will leave when my ascendant membership expires in November.
    killervp
    "A God...Rebuilt":https://a-god-rebuilt.obsidianportal.com
    "OP's COTM April 2012":http://blog.obsidianportal.com/a-god-rebuilt-aprils-cotm/
    Over 300 Fans, and Looking for More!

    Just trying to help out.

  • RyanHeck
    RyanHeck
    Posts: 33
    Agreed about the headache this is causing. It's frustrating to have to tell my players each session about the non-news coming out of this site in this point of history. I'd consider leaving now if competitors weren't so behind OP in terms of online campaign CMS goes. It's not quite detrimental to our campaign yet, but the further we go non-ascendant, the tougher it will be without centralized communication. Still doable, but the more juggling, the harder it is.
  • bluesguy
    bluesguy
    Posts: 127
    I feel your pain @RyanHeck and Mike aka @BlackVulmea...

    Mike : As the backup is just a monster XML file what are you going to do to move it to another site?

    David
  • Maesenko
    Maesenko
    Posts: 325
    I just pulled a backup with my most recent update, and my campaign info is a sliver compared to many of yours. Right now I'm planning on just making individual word documents and such to store all of my content locally in addition to OP. There have been a few moments of late where I've not had proper internet access and didn't have the materials I needed to work on stuff when I wanted to.

    Mind you, I have no intention on taking my stuff off of Obsidian Portal, I just want a proper local copy. I'm not running anything currently, but I'm planning on revamping it into a setting instead of just a campaign. Since December, I'm finally back into gaming after things fell off after my group went on a hiatus last May which turned into playing other games.

    _~Mae_

    ~Mae

    CotM Selection Committee

  • Keryth987
    Keryth987
    Posts: 1,043
    It can be frustrating all that is going on right now. However, I really have no intention of leaving OP. Not only is all my Shadows info here, but the combined AD&D to 3rd ed to Pathfinder campaign setting shared by me and two other GMS is only starting to get major information dumps here as we are currently playing Pathfinder again. And finally, I use OP to spin out new ideas and concepts for campaigns as individual sites here...some get abandoned, others continue to grow. I know there are other sites out theere that I an use, but, even with the unresponsiveness of late, I'm COMFORTABLE here.

    Keelah Se'lai,
    Keryth
    "Shadows Over New York":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/shadows-over-new-york
    "2013 Campaign of The Year":http://blog.obsidianportal.com/2013-coty-shadows-over-new-york/

  • bluesguy
    bluesguy
    Posts: 127
    @Keryth987

    I am comfortable here as well. I am just concerned and continue to be concerned. There isn't anything else out there that is as useful as OP. The only thing close is RealmWorks and I would have to figure out a way to either port or end up re-entering my entire campaign. And the downside with that solution is that I don't have any idea if there is a way to generate a 'human readable' backup of the data. With OP we can at least create an XML file.
  • SkidAce
    SkidAce
    Posts: 830
    If you want a local copy.... "WinHTTrack":http://www.httrack.com/ has worked well for me.

    There has been a few issues with relative versus absolute links or something like that, but once I changed the way I had inserted the link at OP, it copied properly.

    Gets most data in a "usable" format locally.
  • Leonidas300
    Leonidas300
    Posts: 273
    I have stayed off the boards for almost a year now and off the portal in general for the last 8 months, in truth I agree with everyone of Black_Vulmea's points above. I was also a very active member at one point and left over the Reforge issues. Like Mike, it makes me sick to my stomach to go to my page and see everything that was F'ed up by the Reforge and I spent quite a bit a time trying to work through it and fix it (and anyone who has been to the Manifestation of Chaos page can immediately tell, I am not afraid to put a ton of work into something) but in the end, all that time fixing stuff took away from my game especially my prep time, so much so that we did not finish out the campaign on the portal. On top of all that it also cost me two long time players because in trying to stay with the portal which my campaign was heavily reliant upon, they were so infuriated over the damage to our site and the complications that arose because of the Reforge that they left the group.

    I have also been very vocal in my anger and disappointment with the Reforge (as I believe anyone should be). I just recently got my notice my Ascendant Time is coming to an end and for the last month or so my guys have been asking me if I'd be willing to re-up because the new campaign we are planning is very ambitious in nature and what we want to do and is going to require a CMS. I am greatly disappointed there is still no competitor that would fit the bill we are looking for.

    Here is my problem; I want to literally vomit every time I think about giving the OP another dime. I absolutely mean that...

    You know in typing this up I thought about why I game or more accurately why gamers game. Sure there is the fun and the friendships but it is more than that... why do most groups sit around their table and game year after year? Once again lots of reasons but ultimately it is what happens at the table that brings players back and new players in and what happens at most tables is people get to stand up for what is right, whether your a DnD group fighting the evil lich trying to take over the world, on Hoth trying to repel the Imperial invasion, in Chicago helping Dresden thwart the red court, in the 1920's trying to prevent old Cthulhu from rising up and so on. You and your gaming friends get to stand up and say this is wrong and I(we) are going to do something about it. I think it really is as simple as that... This is wrong and I am going to do something about that.

    What has happened during the Reforge is wrong, the portal users have been wronged, lied to and ignored. It is not right, period.

    How so? (Cited from the Kickstater page)

    "*Obsidian Portal is a great tool for your game, but it could be better...A LOT better. We know what it needs, so help us reforge it!*"

    We did, in fact we gave you the developers 17.25% times the amount you asked for. That's right you asked us to come through and we did. Why haven't you? Why haven't you given the people who came to your aid the respect of being upfront about what is going on? Why?
  • Leonidas300
    Leonidas300
    Posts: 273 edited February 2015
    Cont.

    It is not right to treat people, your paying customers in such a fashion. You, the developers have acted without honor in this regard for far too long. I challenge you to explain why someone should remain a customer to people who have proven time and time again they have no time to do what is right?

    Please tell us why? I'm sure I'm not the only one who wants to know.

    The fact is the only reason the portal is still around is due to the graciousness and hard work of the portal community, without them you would have went under soon after the Reforge. Which makes the fact that you consciously stripped away vital tools to that community all the more infuriating. (Campaign Search, Site Wide Search, Search by Popularity, Search by Recently Updated), You also savaged people's forums with no regard to PBP games or people who used the sub-forums (the sub-forums now are far less efficient then they once were). There have been support tickets out the ass for everyone of these features to be reinstated and have been dismissed by your inaction. Once again you spit in the face of your supporters. (way to go)


    (Cited from the Kickstater page)

    "*Is this going to be a completely new site?*"

    "*No, we are not rebuilding the entire website. That being said this also means that your campaigns, data, adventure logs, images, and everything else will still be intact.*"

    Do I really even need to say anything here?


    (Cited from the Kickstater page)

    "*Probably the biggest risk is missing the target deadline of August 2013. In that unlikely case, we will make sure to keep all backers up to date on our progress and update our timelines as things progress."*

    Exactly when did you do this? Oh.. that's right you didn't... in fact in a help post located "here":http://help.obsidianportal.com/discussions/suggestions/906-customer-service you stated "As to a public todo list, that's unlikely. It's not how I've done things in the past and I don't see the need to change that now"

    There have been dozen's of post asking for and pleading with you for an update, every so often one of you will get on and promise to be more forthcoming with information but you never are. Approaching things like you have you come off as liars who treat your customers like crap; I'd really like to think otherwise but really how can I argue with that conclusion?

    Please tell us, based on what has happened over the last 16 months how anyone could possibly trust you?

    The answer is they can't

    That isn't right and *YOU* need to do something about it.


    "Leonidas300":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaign/metzger/wikis/leonidas300
    "A Manifestation of Chaos":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaign/metzger/wikis/main-page
    COTM - Sept. 2012
    Post edited by Leonidas300 on
  • NikMak
    NikMak
    Posts: 379
    Leonidas300 im not sure how much attention they pay to this forum; you may want to re-post on their facebook page if you want the faint hope of some sort of an answer to your issues
  • Bortas
    Bortas
    Posts: 645
    *slow clap* good stuff Leo.

    I didn't have Ascendent pre-reforge, my site's content was blessedly untouched, so I don't have the depth of pain the rest of this site's best patrons do. I really want to believe. I want to give chances for redemption. I'm really proud of the work I have done and don't really want to change, but I see staying being less and less likely.

    NikMak, we could post elsewhere, but it really doesn't matter, they are all ignored. At least in this place, the ones who have given the most to OP, who want it to succeed the most can band together.

    Hell, we probably have the talent RIGHT HERE to build our own CMS for RPGs!

    -bort
    "Morwindl":http://morwindl.obsidianportal.com/
  • Keryth987
    Keryth987
    Posts: 1,043
    All great points Leonidas, but, I have to disagree with you on one:
    "“Is this going to be a completely new site?“

    “No, we are not rebuilding the entire website. That being said this also means that your campaigns, data, adventure logs, images, and everything else will still be intact.“

    Do I really even need to say anything here? "

    While the Reforge did mess up heavily customized sites (like mine), "our campaigns, data, adventure logs, images, and everything else" were still intact. Yes, customization was messed up, but they did warn that would happen. I didn't expect to the level my site was messed up to, but I DID expect it. And yes, I was pissed. Then I took the 3-4 days and fixed my site.

    What I DO NOT appreciate coming form the Devs is the utter silence we have been receiving. We getting no updates, no information, nada.

    I won't be splitting any time soon however, there are no other sites available that let me do for campaigns what OP does, even in its current state. I am tempted though to report them to Kickstarter and show all the goals and stretch goals that have not been met as promised.

    Keelah Se'lai,
    Keryth
    "Shadows Over New York":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/shadows-over-new-york
    "2013 Campaign of The Year":http://blog.obsidianportal.com/2013-coty-shadows-over-new-york/

  • Bortas
    Bortas
    Posts: 645 edited February 2015
    Honestly, I say do it. If I had participated in the Kickstarter, I know I would be (sadly, I wasn't an avid user at the time). If you can't get their attention the nice way, going at the wallet often works...

    -bort
    "Morwindl":http://morwindl.obsidianportal.com
    Post edited by Bortas on
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