Then there are the members of the community that not only enjoy the game, but that try and do something to make it better. These are labors of love, and often are the equivalent of random acts of kindness; almost anonymously handed out to a very needy community. So today we wanted to point squarely at a few individuals that, instead of worrying about who is going to change the situation, work to change the situation. Some of the work going on behind the scenes at some of these projects must be astounding.
- Off the Isle: This is a new website (still under some construction) that is primed and ready for information. As it is right now, it is a good stopping point for new players to read about the game and to learn their way around some of the basics. It looks great too, something that many fan sites struggle with.
- Vanguard SOH Guilds: Zewtastic has put together such an incredible amount of information, and in such convenient forms, that it's a wonder that he does not work for SOE already. You can find cool forum signature tools that will allow you to show off your character and achievements, and his databases and mapping tools are out of this world.
- CustomUI: Slyde is one of the wise old wizards over at the Vanguard forums, and his UI saw more time on my PC then any of them. I wanted to link particularly to his because of his constant involvement in the community, but if you would like to try out some of the other UI's go here. Many players use them to gather as much information on their screen as they could during raids, but I used Slyde's to take away information, for use during my Immersion Project. It isn't really a UI mod as much as it is a toolbox to combine together the best from all the other mods.
- InfoMap and UI mods: Soresha has been quietly working away at her maps and mods for quite a while now, and the work shows. If you need the help, some of the maps will even show you each harvest node out there! She credits other players helping her in gathering a lot of the information, and has refused to take any donations for her work. I think that makes the type of community member that any game would love to have.
- One Link to Rule Them All: Go here for a collection of all sorts of helpful links, as collected together by Slyde. There are plenty of them out there, but these four tend to be active and stay active while handing out powerful tools.
It's good to see community members that do so much for the game they love. It's a tough job, and often a thankless one, but hopefully their hard work will pay off one day. I know it has for the other community members that use their information on a daily basis! In smaller games, or games that will always reside in an independent status despite their backer, the community has to be very aware of their place. Smaller communities can either blame the developers, bemoan the loss of something they have had in the past, or do what these four have done and do something about it. A community should not be judged on it's size, but on the ability to get things done.