Conquest is made from the ashes of one's enemies.


RMN Drama Advisory System

I was digging through my locker tonight and found this archaic image.

Not sure if it was ever public previously, but thought I would share.

Arise, Kentonimus Prime

Do not grieve. Soon I will be one with the Matrix... but one day an Autobot will rise from our ranks and use the power of the Matrix to light our darkest hour.

In all seriousness, when I reassumed command of last March, I had no illusion that I would hold that role indefinitely. What I did want to accomplish, specifically, was to ensure that would be saved from the abyss and that it would become a self-sustaining site. With your help both were accomplished.

I had originally intended to hold on to my role as administrator until next March to give the community some sense of stability -- something that many thought it had lacked through the turmoil through the near closing and the bickering that preceded it. While I've had my own share of turmoil, I maintain that is in an enormously better place now than it was ten months ago by almost every objective metric -- and most subjective ones as well. In fact, I feel it is on such solid ground that I can now safely remove myself early.

I felt the need to expedite this process due to a fairly big promotion at work recently that will not only give me enormous new responsibilities, but also a long commute for the time being. I also recently started graduate school, and honestly there is only so much time in my day. It would not be fair to to continue to be an absent administrator, especially when one so able is readily available and willing.

So that Autobot is kentona.

One of my first decisions when I came back to was to reinstate kentona as an administrator. He has been a tireless advocate for our site since its inception, and I know no one who cares more about the community we have created here. Since returning in March kentona has also proven himself, along with ankylo, capable of manipulating the inner workings of the beast to bring about tangible coding changes to the physical site resulting in RMN4. In many senses, he is to the community.

And now he runs I changed our avatars a couple of weeks ago to hint at such, and now it is official. My resignation is effective immediately.

'til the day when all are one...

Staff Promotions -- Deckiller & Shinan

I am pleased to announce the addition of two members to the ranks of staff here at Deckiller and Shinan have both been promoted from the userbase, and their primary focus will be on forum moderation for the near-term. In addition to being a regular RPG Maker busy-body, Deckiller has relevant experience as an administrator at Wikipedia (citation needed); Shinan is a long-term member who has submitted a lot of original content. Also, he's our token European.

The addition of two active moderators should allow for quicker response times to forum issues, allow for consistency, and ensure fairness in all situations. We are currently developing a user code of conduct to support this.

In addition, we have some subtractions! Karsuman has officially resigned from his administrator position, though he will remain a part of the family as our IRC founder. Don't let him off so easy; feel free to drop by and give him a hard time. S. F. LaValle will also be stepping down as a global moderator, though he will stay on as a contributor.

RMN4 incoming

So the latest version of (“RMN4”) is ready to go live on September 5th, 2011. We were not able to creep in all the features that we were initially planning, but there are considerable updates to site functionality and a fresh coat of paint. We will continue to implement new features post-release via DLC.
So a brief look at what is new:

- New layout with additional content visibility, including a “buzz meter” to highlight games with lots of activity based upon metrics such as downloads, comments, reviews, etc. Buzz will decay after a period of time to ensure the information is always current.

- Redesigned list pages for reviews, blogs, etc. to for better organization and relevance.

- A new media tab for gameprofiles to allow users to submit music, trailers, Lets Plays series, etc. to gameprofiles. Note: any user can submit media to a game.

- Engine pages have been updated to act more like gameprofiles, including the ability to host utilities and patches. In the future this will be used to update the engine pages with up-to-date information on our supported engines.

- A scripts section to support RPG Maker XP/VX and other relevant engines.

- Gameprofile options to share the content on popular websites (Facebook, reddit, etc.)

- Blogs are now sorted into user-selected categories such as announcements, game design, progress reports, etc.

- Achievement are now viewable with a list of used who have earned them.

- Lots of bugfixes, tweaks, and refinements to existing systems (some of which were already stealth added to the live site).

- New admin tools.

- Gamepages no longer use the "date available" field to determine visibility - games can now be marked public / private

-You can delete multiple PMs in your inbox similar to how the locker deleting works

-You can sort your lock based on file size

-Event management tweaks (you can remove team members and leave an event)

-Resubmit some deleted / denied submissions (games/reviews/articles/tutorials/scripts)

-Edit reviews/articles/tutorials/scripts when viewing them (instead of having to go to your submissions history)

-Filter your submissions by submission type

-You can now edit forum topics / titles

-Added subscription management tools (you can unsubscribe from getting notices for comments/images/blogs/downloads)

-Fixed bug where if a developer set a download as for testers only it would also allow them to set it as a main download (it won't let you do this now)

bbcode tag for the site (we'll teach you how to use it soon!)

-probably more!

We won’t pretend that RMN4 is 100% complete but we do feel it is time to push it live. Further changes will be made based upon user feedback and observations on how some systems are working. ankylo and kentona have invested a ton of time on this project so they have my appreciation. Hopefully the transition from the dev server to the live server goes well and everyone can peruse RMN4 on Labor day!

What Happened Last Night

By now, I think that most people have become aware of some of the site happenings last night. For those of you that are not aware, the following is what occurred:

• At approximately 9:00pm CST the featured game on was changed to “Sonic and the Chaos Dragons” by a then unknown staff member. It was later discovered that this change was made by Magi, and was meant to serve as his “resignation letter”. He went on to publicly bash and its users/games in the public IRC channel. Logs show that the game was featured to mock and the quality of the games available/featured on the site.

• When Magi was discovered to be the culprit (confirmed with IP logs before he admitted it in, I immediately removed his moderation/submission queue powers. When it became apparent that Magi’s actions were intended to be a signing-off slap to and its users, he was banned. Magi has yet to contact me to appeal the ban.

• At this point, Magi becomes aware of his ban and discusses it with several of his peers . At this point, Strangeluv begins trying to get others to post in favor of Magi. Several warnings were issued, but Strangeluv continued to ask users to post to see how we would react.

• Strangeluv is banned after ignoring final warnings, as was user Abdel McCrack. Six posts total regarding Magi’s ban were deleted after they spill into the “What are you thinking about now?” topic. This decision was made to prevent the thread from being locked, as it had been active for three years. It was a mistake on my part to do so, which I discuss here: Recommendation: Stop Deleting Posts

• Users YDS and Felipe_9595 were the other users who had their posts deleted in that topic. Neither was banned because they have heretofore not caused any trouble at Strangeluv has the honor of holding the longest ban at (2007-2010) for cheating and has been warned on several occasions prior. Yes, he made a really cool game (as did Magi) but that does not allow either of them to do whatever they want. No other actions were taken despite numerous users speaking up about the event (in IRC, on the forums, via annoying flashing avatars, etc.).

• Users Strangeluv and Abdel McCrack have both ban evaded at least one to post more posts. They have been using a proxy/TOR to access the site and probably will continue to try in the future. Posts made when ban evading were deleted, but will not be in the future. They will simply be banned again until one of us tires of this game.

• Several users who were friends with Magi, Strangeluv, etc. decided to move on from at this point, including one user who had never posted before(!).

That pretty much sums up the activities that occurred last night. However, I know many users consider those involved in this debacle to be friends or believe that the actions I took were too harsh. That is the real reason I am creating this topic: to discuss why I felt the action needed to be taken.

On March 4th, 2011 I resumed control of to prevent my good friend WIP from killing the site off completely. There was no single reason why WIP wanted to pull the plug, but the types of drama that was exemplified last night played a major part in this decision. We have several long-term users here who feel as their opinions and creations are more important than others, which is okay – it happens. The problems occur when those users decide not to contribute or be constructive when they interact with others. This is an issue I have taken very seriously since I returned to, and it has been the #1 complaint from the new users who we are supposed to be guiding and making feel welcome.

There are many different users who have participated in this nonsense from all different kinds of backgrounds. These actions have previously culminated in warnings to prolific developers like Craze and users who have not contributed anything but derision like Jericho. Magi has not be innocent in this regards, nor have some of his associates. I kept him on as staff when I resumed control of due to his long tenure as a staff member. However, he almost immediately quit performing his normal duties of moderating the submission queue – most of this has been handled by Karsuman with kentona and ankylo’s support since March. He has moderated the queue on the rare occasion, but it was most often to deny someone’s submission (which he should do if justified) with condescending remarks. He would read topics in the staff forum, but had only responded in one topic since March. He had been called out several times for his inactivity, but he never responded. He should have already been terminated by any measure but we kept him on to keep the peace.

<@Magi> i often asked
<@Magi> why i am still staffed at rmn
<@Magi> despite doing nothing anymore
<@Magi> and then i realized
<@Magi> it is because 75% of the staff couldn't can me in good faith
<@Magi> because they also do nothing

Magi has also made several demeaning remarks regarding the current site, such as that I only kept it open because it was an important business venture to me ($30/month ad revenue). Look through his post history, and you will see pages of snarky (yet sometimes subtle) jabs at other users and their creations. This kind of attitude has continue to pervade Magi and some others since it was announced that would remain open.

<Magi> it isn't so much the site that we criticize
<Magi> as it is the members
<Magi> well, select members
<Magi> such as f-g and lockez
<Ciel> the overarching design and attitude trends in the userbase
<Kef> i only trash rmn because it's outright pathetic to see a 25 year old make a game like tales of zoolander or whatever
<Ciel> we stopped discussing flaws with the actual site about the time it became clear you weren't interested in fixing them
<Ciel> obviously our intention was to be mean and terrible and not to help
<Kef> the constructive criticism stopped when it was clear no one wanted to hear advice

So we’ve continued to play this game with them for months, sending the odd warning whenever they got really out of hand. But that hasn’t stopped them at all. Last night was simply the final straw. Some of their supporters are being disingenuous when protesting Magi’s ban and claiming a lack of transparency. In fact, Strangeluv purposefully asked several members to continue posting about Magi even when we had made it clear that it needed to stop.

<Strangeluv> Please stand up
<Strangeluv> for your fallen shmups
<Strangeluv> Me and Magi
<YDS> idk i am posting
<YDS> all over the place.
<Strangeluv> He cant ban us all... (yes he can)
<Magi> kef can you do something for me...
<Kef> sup
<Magi> i need you
<@Magi> to post something
<Strangeluv> "hey nice admining. What are you afraid of? If you can't see that you're overreacting and making some shitty illogical decisions, then fuck you, ban me.
<Abdel McCrack> he banned by account, I can still view the site on another browser
<Magi> but it will take a couple minutes
<@Magi> for me to make it
<Kef> okay i will
<Magi> you will probably be banned but
<Ciel> lol
<Strangeluv> Something like that
<Magi> it will be worth it
<Kef> only reason i ever visit rmn is to post things that might get me banned anyway
<mellytan> lets push it to the limits yds
<Strangeluv> lol
<YDS> lol
<Kef> please
<Emirpoen> Is it even possible to troll Holbert?
<Strangeluv> YDS please
<Ciel> holbert is part of the infectionfiles accord
<@Magi> no
<Strangeluv> get banned
<Kef> everyone get banne dtonight
<Magi> holb will press ban button
<mellytan> yes
<Magi> and you will be gone
<YDS> ban party!
<Strangeluv> Please speak out Ocean..
<Strangeluv> If YDS or Ocean gets banned
<Strangeluv> Why is mellytan not posting
<Strangeluv> i am disappointed

This continues on and on. It is clear that they understood what actions they were taking and the consequences for continuing to do so. This nonsense has continued through today. The difference is now they are taking a very disingenuous position that they were banned for no good reason and that I am being a despot for taking action against them. The reality is that the members who were banned have no real interest in and have been actively working against the site for quite some time. It is unfortunate that have drug others into their endeavors and I am saddened that some pretty cool people have left because of it. I want to be a healthy place for discussion and that just can’t happen if we allow people to undermine the site administration or its continually mock our users. Those who can be civil and disagree without being disagreeable are always welcome here as are their games.

State of the Maker: How we're doing.

I just wanted to let everyone know how is doing from some popular objective statistical measures. This is meant to complement the database stats that kentona releases every month. These site statistics are less personal but I find them interesting nonetheless. All numbers and statistics are derived from Google Analytics and are from January 1st through May 31st of this year unless otherwise noted.

- Site visits from 01/01/2011 through 05/31/2011 are up 34.53% from the same time period the previous year. Google analytics defines a site visit as “the number of individual sessions initiated by all the visitors to your site.” If you exclude the month of January (in which there was a 13% decrease), site visits are up 45% this year.

- Absolute unique visitors is up 55.06% year to date vs. last year. This category has exploded since late February (meaning a greater variety of users are visiting the site).

- Page views continue to average over 1,000,000 a month. Again, January was an outlier with only 743,000. I guess featuring Legendary Legend in December scared some folks away. :)

- The forum page views are way down for most forums (30% in some cases), but this is misleading as many of the forums were deleted. The ones that survived the merger saw increases. Page views to the main site have increased by about the same 30%, however.

- The mailbox is the second most viewed page on the site after the main page!

- The most popular games by page views:
1. Beautiful Escape: Dungeoneer 13,237
2. Forever’s End 10,363
3. Legionwood: Tale Of The Two Swords 9,884
4. Alter A.I.L.A. Genesis 9,186
5. Leo and Leah 9,151
6. Hero’s Realm 7,973
7. Vacant Sky Vol. 1: Contention 7,160
8. Breath of Fire II: The Fated Child (XP) 6,179
9. Rework the Dead: Evil 6,378
10. RPG Maker 20XX Engine 6,156

- 51.37% of users are referred here by search engine queries. 18.61% are referred here by other sites. 30.01% of users come here directly. This can be attributed to our search engine rank which is pretty high for most rpg maker related terms.

- Browser rank breakdown by percentage of users:
1. Firefox 47.17%
2. Chrome 26.27%
3. Internet Explorer 17.73%
4. Opera 4.81% (this is just me and kentona)
5. Safari 3.37%
6. Other 0.35%

- Operating system rank breakdown by percentage of users:
1. Windows 93.68% (Windows 7 45.89%, Windows XP 34.65%, Windows Vista 19.05%, Other 0.41%)
2. Macintosh 3.41%
3. Linux 1.04%
4. Other 1.87%

- May was the best month ever for ad revenue, nearly doubling its monthly average. Combined with user subscriptions, now is entirely self-sufficient. Thanks to all of you who helped make that happen! 4th birthday contest

In honor of’s fourth birthday, and to celebrate our awesome users which have helped keep the sitet going, we are going to have an official site contest on June 3rd, 2011*. The contest will take the form of a 34-hour game making event in which users will have threefour consecutive hours to make a game and submit it to be judged. To make the contest more accessible to everyone the game can be created during any block of threefour hours on June 3rd as long as it gets submitted by midnight. Yes, this means we will be using the honor system – please don’t take the internets too seriously. There will be a theme for the contest that will be revealed at midnight on June 2nd, 2011. Further details regarding how to submit your games and the names of the judges will be solidified during the next two weeks.

All contestants will receive achievements and the winner will receive a monetary prize ($25). Losers will receive a complimentary t-shirt** and the sudden realization that they are forever alone on a Friday night. We may see what else we can scrounge up for participants.


- no restrictions on engine or graphics
- the 24 hour period will be for June 3rd central time zone
- the event period has now been switched to 4-hours per kentona's suggestion.
- people shouldn't back out because they can't make an "epic" or "worthwhile" game in the 4-hours. Most attempts are either end up being humorous or have some other gimmick. Develop them further after the deadline if you like.

tl;dr We are having a 34-hour contest on June 3rd with a CASH MONEY prize.

* Yes, we realize officially launched on June 2nd, 2007, but we felt that having this on a weekend night may make the contest more accessible.

** Not really. needs your help!

I do not often discuss the site's inner workings so publicly on, but I feel it is my obligation to in this matter as it has the potential to disrupt everything we have built, and everything that our users have built: the game profiles, the community, itself. I was contacted by the EVP of UBM TechWeb, our gracious web hosting provider, on April 11th, 2011 to inform us that the server that is hosted on is being retired. Their corporately owned websites will be transitioning to a newer server in their corporate data-center. The problem: was never bought by UBM TechWeb and would require a lot of effort for them to move due to the site structure and package needs. They would prefer it if we found a new home in the next two to four weeks.

UBM TechWeb (formerly known as Think Services) is the parent company of such organizations as Gamasutra, the Game Developers Conference (GDC), and Game Developer magazine. Our relationship began in late 2008 when they were interested in acquiring both domain and a license for the site platform WIP created. They wanted to make into Enterbrain's official portal in the west. WIP and myself would have both been kept on to manage the site with UBM acting as a liaison between Enterbrain and the team. It was a pretty big deal, and we were very excited about it. Erratic behavior by Enterbrain and the abysmal failure that was Indie Game Maker killed the deal less than a week before it was to go public. UBM was very classy during the whole scenario and even offered to continue hosting for free. They have even offered us tickets to the GDC on a couple of occasions. They've taken very good care of us for over two years and for that we are grateful.

However, such an arrangement could not last forever and now it is time for us to go our own separate ways.

This puts in a dire position: a burgeoning website without a home. We have looked into purchasing our own dedicated server as we had before UBM, but the technical requirements are greater than they were in 2003 â€" or 2007. The server specs required to host this beast are much greater than the entry level web servers I paid for out of pocket for six years. The Benefactor cannot carry this new burden alone; I have two kids, I took a large pay cut late last year to move closer to home, and I will be starting my Masters program at Northwestern University soon (look up their tuition costs!). Our ad revenue nets us a small income every few months, but not nearly enough to cover the monthly costs of running a server. The other administrators are willing to pitch some fundage in, but it still puts us pretty short.

So we're turning to our userbase to help save

When I reassumed the helm of after the April 2nd fiasco, I received several PMs from folks telling me how they took the site for granted and wanted to help. At that time, I politely declined such notions, as I was unaware of the dire challenge we would be facing so soon. I am a proud guy and typically would never ask for help, but I'm not willing to let this community die over my own stubbornness.

So what are we asking for?

We have created a PayPal business account specifically for, separate from our personal accounts. Any donation sent to this account will be used strictly to support operational expenses. Initial donations will be used to acquire a new dedicated server to transition to. Future or reoccurring donations will be used to support the monthly operational costs of the server. Any excess (if any) funds will simply be applied to the next month's bill.

We are in the process of creating an official donations page that will support the following options:

- One-time donations with user selected amounts.
- Recurring monthly sponsorships in fixed amounts ($3, $5, $10).

So what do the donating users get out of this deal?

- The satistifaction of helping keep alive for all users
- An achievement for helping to save
- Expanded locker space
- Custom user titles
- A date with kentona*
- Other (open to suggestions)

* not really.

Individuals who select the recurring monthly sponsorship option will also receive:
- e-mail address (if requested, as supplies last).
- Personal webspace on the new server.
- Google ads will be removed from view
- A 88x31 banner ad for the user's game will be placed in a rotation on the site
- Other (open to suggestions)

Some of these features would not be implemented until RMN4 releases. It was originally planned for's 4th birthday on June 1st, 2011 but it might be delayed due to the server move or become non-existent without enough support!

I am open to suggestions about other benefits but we're well aware that we already give our best features away for free. We do not want to do anything that would cripple the core functionality of the site or divide the userbase into multiple tiers. There are some additional game hosting features we could implement into RMN4 but right now we're more concerned with survival.

Donation page (WIP):

Lets keep this place going for everyone!

The Rainbow of New Staff Members

In case noticed the additional array of staff rainbow colors on display in the forums, we have promoted two separate folks into our official ranks and a third individual has also been reactivated. GreatRedSpirit is being brought on as a technical assistant of sorts to assist ankylo with web design and development. This promotion is especially timely as we are preparing to alter the frontpage to reflect more cool content and less latest submissions. Second, Creation is now the moderator of the Game Development forums. He will help us dish out justice, quell insurrections, and generally promote a positive forum experience. Creation is also working on drafting a user code of conduct. Additionally, S.F. LaValle has also returned to his role of global moderator after a short hiatus.

Welp! There are rules!

The Welp forum has been created because there is need to quarantine certain types of posts that, while humorous or useful, do not meet the level of being a full-blown discussion thread. Forum games, media threads, and posts designed with short responses in mind are generally acceptable uses of this forum.

However, please keep in mind that this is not the Moronic forum, and we must do our best to ensure that it does not become as foul as its predecessor. As such, keep the following things in mind:

1. This is not the place to post or reply to topics that should be presented elsewhere in the hope that it will fly under the moderation radar. If the content of the post would fit nicely in another forum, please develop your thoughts into a coherent discussion and post it there instead.

2. No user call-out threads. This includes creating threads purely to mock other users or their creations and/or opinions.

3. No site call-out threads. If you can not present your case in a constructive manner in the User Feedback forum or via PM, don't bring your dirty laundry here. This includes disagreements over site policies and decisions.

4. No random threads with no rhyme or reason. Even if the general expectations for welp posts are less than what would be found in General Discussion, they must as least further some purpose â€" even if that purpose is just show off cool YouTube videos.

5. As users continue to find ways to skirt the rules and bring the site down into a foul stench, we will update the rules accordingly. However, the lack of an explicit rule on a topic should not illicit bad behavior just because “it's not a rule”. You will be held accountable for not only your adherence to stated rules but also your levels of civility and common sense.

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