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Improving EJ / Community Input


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#1 MysticalOS

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Posted 10 September 2013 - 04:11 PM

This thread acts as a continuation of the one that was in BB.

Hello, My name is Kevin/Arxkanite and I’ve been put in charge of expanding EJ and keeping the site working. EJ Traffic is drastically down and the community is beginning to wane. Our goal is to grow the community back up as we firmly believe in what EJ stands for and it’s massive benefits to not just the wow community, but the gaming community as a whole.

That’s why I’m going to reach out to you guys today to make sure you have as much feedback as possible in this process. We want to be able to expand on your ideas and thoughts to grow the community you love.

  • What are the most important things we should avoid doing that would ruin the EJ experience for you?
  • Why is EJ Important for you? What makes you want to participate in this community?

Those two questions are the most important in preventing us from making any changes you might not like. To be fair though, we aren’t planning sweeping changes. Mostly we are looking to increase the content available.

Please let us know your thoughts and ideas so we can keep maintaining EJ.

I’ll allow MysticalOS to introduce himself.


Most know me as the DBM guy, or the mac tech support MVP on blizzard forums, or the raiding prot warrior on US-Whisperwind, and blizz designers like to think of me as a pain in the ass. I spend most of my time diagnosing problems. Be it in wow, or in computer trouble shooting, or just in general technology. I like figuring out what makes things work.

I was approached and told to take on additional duty for EJ. I was as surprised as anyone being that I'm not even entirely sure of the whole structure of how things are done. Apparently someone thinks I'm up to task. Their hope is that I can engage the community, and find ways to bring new or old users back to EJ forums. My hope is to do this while respecting current structure and not changing anything of how EJ operates. I have no desire to step on any toes or change how things work. I don't want to ruin EJ or "take over" anything.



#2 Stealthcat

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Posted 13 September 2013 - 11:53 AM

I am a lurker here for quite some time (I post very rarely) and have seen this change to.

In my opinion people do not need the same amount of guidance anymore. I have played this game since the launch of Zul'gurub in vanilla. I raided AQ 40 and honestly did not know what I was doing. When TBC came out I switched to my rogue and started Karazhan. Back then I was quite the DPS'er I thought (mostly #2 on meters etc.)

About 3 months in we merged with a smaller guild and along came a fellow rogue in mostly the same gear. He was a cocky @^&* so people asked me to teach him a lesson on the meters. Long story short, I got my ass handed to me on each and every encounter, by LARGE numbers...

He pointed me to these boards and my mind exploded. I had wrong talents, wrong stat priority (hit rating wut?)and even a wrong rotation.

On these boards I found the gear upgrade sheet Aldriana covered which helped me out alot during those times. I probably spend days in that sheet...

On top of that I read strategy differences from what we were doing which made things alot more clear.

Back to now. These days I am in the top guild on my server and doing the damage I am supposed to. Over the last expansions we lost alot of options like talents and even stats (armor penetration was my hero) so things are all quite obvious.

I do still check in here about daily, without even logging in, just to browse my most important threads and almost never run into unexpected things.

TL;DR

The game is alot easier to understand these days.

What I miss is people discussing different tactics for fights. I saw this pointed out already in another thread. For strategy purposes, this aint the place no more.

Do keep up the good work. This place is awesome.

#3 corveroth

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 07:42 AM

In EJ's heyday, it was the premier source for information for anything related to gameplay. It was the only centralized resource, excepting introductory-level spec threads on the official forums. Tools for optimizing your character, such as spreadsheets or Rawr, were advertised via these forums.

Over the last few expansions, that exclusivity has been lost, and the newcomers are more convenient. Rawr exploded to cover many specs, though it has since fallen prey to abandoned modules and the increasing complexity of modeling. SimulationCraft has become easily usable for any player with a few minutes to spare. AskMrRobot has come into being, and for most players, suffices. Even Wowhead offers gemming recommendations, and enchantment choices are either obvious or offer marginal differences. Addons have been introduced to automate reforging - just plug in the numbers you were given, or that you simmed.

On top of this trend of easier and more accessible tools, Elitist Jerks has failed to maintain the guides hosted here. There has been no Guardian thread since the beginning of Cataclysm. The Fire Mage thread dates to 5.1, Arcane to 5.2, and the Frost thread again dates to the previous expansion. Of the Rogue threads, only Combat is current. Convenience and accessibility aside, Elitist Jerks does not maintain current, useful content for many players.

I don't know from which end the migration started, or whether there's some political nonsense that led to a mass exodus. From where I sit, looking back at this site's history since TBC end-game (with a six-month hiatus during early Cataclysm), it appears that it was simply that failure to maintain useful content that allowed the rise of Icy Veins, and the lesser prominence of class/spec websites such as The Inconspicuous Bear and How To Priest.

To win your way back? I'm not sure what options exist. Most directly addressing your second question, I once valued EJ as the source for learning how to play and gear my characters, but Icy Veins seems to have that on lockdown. There might still be room for discussion in the veins of Theck's blog, for advanced theorycrafting, to bridge the gap between the users and the creators of the tools we use, but I fear you've lost the audience of the users for good.

#4 Aanzeijar

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Posted 17 September 2013 - 02:14 PM

I think the quality of EJ's class sections always stood or fell with the associated names. It's not EJ's rogue guide, people remember Aldriana. Think Hamlet, Ciderhelm and <guy-or-gal-I-forgot-or-never-knew-'cause-I-didn't-play-the-class>. People gather where the names are, and remember the names. Gathering people doesn't help the official forums of course, but work on moderation is associated with names too. I remember Kaubel not for awesome game theory but for raging infractions.

Also I don't think the community needs to be told how to gear/glyph/mastery anymore. That never was a strength of EJ, and other sites condense that info in tabloid style headlines anyway. The great time of theory crafting was when you could cast Curse of Recklessness on bosses. What people still want to hear are opinions of esteemed players (which nowadays are mostly bloggers) and the people who write guides still need theoretical foundation about current developments. What I think people should want to know about is raid leading. That topic should yield enough for a few PhDs, and still gets next to no attention. Another is fault tolerance of a raid setups below the top. Yes, the hard modes dictate that you get through that encounter with 2 healers and 1 kicker. But 1 unreliable kicker will mean that every time that guy screws up it's a guaranteed wipe. Finding a more reliable raid setup for medium strength raids is a nontrivial exercise and of practical value to about 30000 raids out there. How to evaluate team members? A question that every raid lead struggles with. How to handle toxic players? How to handle schedule conflicts? The game is full of unsolved questions.

tl;dr
- Find names, or make some. In the current web, noone cares for information without a name to it.
- Help them express their opinions about the game and use it to leverage the theory part.
- Forget about play guides. Everyone can do that. Focus on theory behind guides. The guide from which guides pull their info.
- Find new things to theorycraft about, things that aren't explored, and I'd argue for loosening the "top end hard mode theory or gtfo" rule. There's plenty theory in normal mode too.

#5 Florrie

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 10:41 PM

How about you don't serve up ads like this? Or are you actively pursuing the prestige basement dwelling market? This is shameful crap that I wouldn't have seen here a year ago.

No, when you stir shit into shit you get more shit. It doesn't dilute the shit, let alone turn it into wonderful chocolate whip cream.


#6 MysticalOS

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 06:15 PM

EJB is looking to expand guide writing initiative further to offer things like profit sharing based on guide traffic.

There is also behind the scenes work on updating forum software and hardware to improve site experience.

Also, they want to explore the BB going free and invite only. Where existing BBers will get access but any new ones will only gain access through invite from existing BB members. They of course want feedback on this one.

#7 Fetchi

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 07:48 PM

Step 1 Pay people to generate quality content/guides.
Step 2 ?
Step 3 profit!

Not sure what all the hand ringing is about the first thing you should have done is make sure you have up to date information on each class/spec.

#8 ArielleEJ

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 07:05 PM

On top of this trend of easier and more accessible tools, Elitist Jerks has failed to maintain the guides hosted here. There has been no Guardian thread since the beginning of Cataclysm.

I'll explain why this happened.

Basically Reesi didn't see the need to duplicate her work while (at least back then) being forced to use Rawr, when we had Mew which (at the time) was so much better. Further, Tangedyn, Fasc, Yawning, and myself were never really fond of having to "prove" ourselves, since we (at the time) were the ones that knew what was going on anyway.

So we made our own forum where we could talk amongst ourselves and encouraged other Guardians to come and share their tips/tricks/etc. Unsurprisingly it's been swimmingly successful with hardly any moderation required.

I'm here now because Omega pestered me enough, and because it never hurts to make sure the correct information is available in as many places as possible. Plus it's a more convenient discussion platform than twitter for people that I have questions for (usually Hamlet and/or Theck).

#9 casey12

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 02:35 AM

Last month, I returned to WoW after a 2+ year absence, and had to start over with my characters, beginning with how to move.

 

This was the first place I came, to see what I had to do to make myself do half-way decent DPS (not for raiding, etc. but for solo playing - I have a medical issue that dictates I play single).  I found many guides missing, and eventually learned of another website, Ice Veins, where I found the type information that you used to have on this website, and in more detail, too.

 

One suggestion.  Find a player who is really into computers and build a section where beginning players, or even knowledgeable players can come and talk computers, video cards, etc.  I see a need for that because many players don't know what mobo you need to combine with which vid card and what type of RAM, etc.  How to build your own machine, fans vs liquid cooling, etc.

 

There should be some other things that you can build upon to bring people back to this website.

 

I thank you for providing me with all the information I needed to be a good raider over the years, and wish you the best of luck.

 

Casey 






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