My Story

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UK1
Posts: 118
Joined: January 4th, 2010, 7:34 pm

My Story

Post by UK1 »

I've kept silent about this just because it depressed me so incredibly deeply.

The original "This is a sinking ship." post made me cry. Physically. It moved me in ways that story, instruments, poetry, and song have all failed. My heart stopped that day and it paused again when I read the "Wesnoth2" post, but now my heart is breaking entirely seeing what's going on with the Wesnoth Board. I'm sorry if this is off-topic, but I'm going to write my story here because I want it to exist somewhere. I need some record of what this game has meant to me to be here.

I was just 14. It was Christmas of 2007 that I found this game. I only played the campaigns. It wasn't til 1.4, that Spring, that I went onto the multiplayer server. I thought long and hard over the name I would pick. I went through multiple usernames but landed on the username "Ukraneean".

It was a bustling place. The chat was very simple then... I met two people, Jean and Katie. We became friends very rapidly. I... wasn't very good. But I played with them. Almost every night, I played with them. I got better. Soon, I was beating them. I got to know them. Katie got chased from the game by a pedophile (it was the wild west of the internet, still, I guess), but Jean stuck around a while. I played some browser-based games with him. We would stay up til the wee hours talking on the IRC during the Summer and on weekends. This was the first genuine friend I had ever made on the internet.

Then I met subLime and PsychoticKittens. They were crazy. SubLime wasn't very good and was kind of a jerk, so we would call him subNoob. All in good fun. PsychoticKittens, we of course called PK because that was just too long for a proper nick. And my epithet went from "Ukra" which was fumbly and... sounds weird to "UK". The four of us would get into all sorts of trouble. There was a particular mod, Noy4, that we made an art of annoying while still being within the confines of the rules. At the time I thought he was literally the Devil. Years... I guess, passed. Jean decided to leave Wesnoth... he gave me his email, but I lost it. So stupid. PK stuck around and so did subLime, for a while at least.

Around this time 1.6 came out, I think, and I met 5dPZ. The best Wesnoth player in the world. At least, according to him. He was friends with Noy4, with whom I enjoyed a detente. Though Noy and I gradually became friends, I was still not entirely certain he wasn't the Devil. 5dPZ would become much more important to me later, but for now he did something that helped me a great deal: He vouched for me.

Natasiel, tekelili (who still plays, thankfully), tadpol, soul_steven, ezysquire, and... some other people had a relatively close-knit group of players who would play 3v3's almost every night. 5dPZ's word that I was "pretty decent" (I remember explicitly that this is how he put it) was enough for me to play with them. They loathed me, to start with, and tolerated my presence only when they had five players, making me absolutely necessary for everyone to be included in a game. But, like skin cancer, I slowly grew on them. I never really grew close with any of them aside from soul_steven, with whom I had a productive friendship for a solid couple years. Every night, 3v3's. They were glorious. Probably some of the happiest moments of my life. I really should have savored them more.

And then, one by one, I stopped seeing the regular players. Soul_steven dropped off the map... Ezysquire I hadn't seen in a long time. Tekelili and Natasiel had absolutely no interest in playing with me, rightfully so, I am a self-proclaimed monster. Also they seemed to be playing World Conquest (which I abhor) almost exclusively. Then one day 5dPZ asked me to join a game of his. I did so. I assumed he just needed any old player to fill any old slot... but lo and behold, he switched his teammate out of his slot and me into it. In those days, this was quite the faux-pas and was only done for good reason, which would typically be provided upon doing so. 5dPZ was not one to stand on social mores, however, and he started the game without even commenting on what had just transpired. I was panic stricken.

What if I was terrible? He would judge me. He'll find out I suck.

Well, I wasn't terrible. I did beat my opponent. But I also sucked. I learned, over the coming months, that there are two instances where 5dPZ would break his otherwise uniform silence in team chat:

-His teammate (in this case me) was losing their side of the battle.

-He was losing his side of the battle.

And in this particular game he certainly did speak when it looked like my mistakes might cost me victory. He informed me, quite vociferously and with great verbal creativity, what I had done wrong. I figured I had blown it and he'd never play with me again. Much to my surprise, it was quite the opposite. He messaged me right after the game asking what map I wanted to play on next. Those were my next years, daily 2v2's with 5dPZ, up until 2013 or so when he and I only started logging on at intervals. After Noy4 went who knows where (never found out or looked into it), I believe I may have been 5dPZ's last friend. He was certainly mine. He and I still manage to log on simultaneously every now and then and play a game together. But it doesn't feel the same. It doesn't have the same edge. It's more like two old men playing chess in the park rather than chess professionals playing at a tournament. The vessel is present but the substance is lacking.

There was a time after that, maybe 2014-2015, that Velensk would log on and we would play, very occasionally. But I wouldn't say we were ever friends. He suffered from apparent emotional constipation and I was of the opinion that the only thing he felt was very mild disappointment at all times.

I don't log in under the username "Ukraneean" anymore, when I do get the time... there's no point. There's no-one who would recognize that name. So I pick a new username every time. Every once in a while I'll see a username in the lobby that bears a resemblance to one of my friends and I'll light up only to be let down when I realize my error.

I love this game not because it's got some amazing novelty. The novelty was its community and allowing the community to contribute, not a facet of the game itself. But I don't love this game for what the community or the developers put into it. I love this game for what I put into it. I was a child when I found this game and I'm an adult now and I grew up somewhere in between, though I don't know where, and Wesnoth is one of few things that was a part of my life for all of that. I may go a month without logging in but some fundamental part of me doesn't want to let that go. This is the last bastion of the me from eight years ago who immersed himself in this community with wonder and awe in his eyes. When I play Wesnoth late at night on the weekends I can still tap into the feeling I would have as a teenager sneaking downstairs to log on and play with my friends late at night. Or of watching snow collect on the window pane above my computer as I marathoned Wesnoth over Christmas break. Or cracking the same window to let in a breeze over summer vacation while the friends I was playing with harangued me in chat to take my turn (the amount of time I took thinking on my turns was always something of debate, particularly because the amount of time I dedicated appeared to have very little impact on the quality of the moves).

That's my story about the only video game I ever loved. Wesnoth may not be the best game. It may not be the sleekest or most visually pleasing game. But it is the only game that ever made me feel anything.

Love,
Ukraneean
"Hey you, bats should be nerfed."
"Why?"
"Because I lost a game to bat swarm and I'm bitterUhm... clarity... and... consistency? Yeah yeah that sounds good. Clarity and consistency."
Do not. Nerf. The bat.

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Thrawn
Moderator Emeritus
Posts: 2047
Joined: June 2nd, 2005, 11:37 am
Location: bridge of SSD Chimera

Re: My Story

Post by Thrawn »

Hey UK1, thanks for sharing!

I'm kinda pleased that I still remember some of those names, and I certainly understand the sadness that comes from seeing people who were a regular part of our life fade away, as well as the excitement from logging on--it was the first online community I'd had (pretty strict parental control over what I did/played online), and feeling a part of something is great (great enough to inspire me to try and contribute in a variety of ways).

All I can say is that while wesnoth has grown and changed, as has the player-base and the people running things, the community is hopefully still around and supportive!
...please remember that "IT'S" ALWAYS MEANS "IT IS" and "ITS" IS WHAT YOU USE TO INDICATE POSSESSION BY "IT".--scott

this goes for they're/their/there as well

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The_Gnat
Posts: 2120
Joined: October 10th, 2016, 3:06 am
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Re: My Story

Post by The_Gnat »

Nice :) I'v only been around for a short month and a half... but I can see what you mean. Wesnoth gathers great passionate people, But like you said the community is not what makes the story we do... each one of us make our own story.

Thank you for sharing your story!
Creator of: The Reign of The Lords Era,The Gnats Franken Dungeon
Co-designer of the (not-wesnoth) space combat video game Planet Bounce.

UK1
Posts: 118
Joined: January 4th, 2010, 7:34 pm

Re: My Story

Post by UK1 »

The_Gnat wrote:Nice :) I'v only been around for a short month and a half... but I can see what you mean. Wesnoth gathers great passionate people, But like you said the community is not what makes the story we do... each one of us make our own story.

Thank you for sharing your story!
My sweet, summer child...
"Hey you, bats should be nerfed."
"Why?"
"Because I lost a game to bat swarm and I'm bitterUhm... clarity... and... consistency? Yeah yeah that sounds good. Clarity and consistency."
Do not. Nerf. The bat.

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ForestDragon
Posts: 1511
Joined: March 6th, 2014, 1:32 pm

Re: My Story

Post by ForestDragon »

UK1 wrote:The original "This is a sinking ship." post made me cry. Physically. It moved me in ways that story, instruments, poetry, and song have all failed. My heart stopped that day and it paused again when I read the "Wesnoth2" post, but now my heart is breaking entirely seeing what's going on with the Wesnoth Board. I'm sorry if this is off-topic, but I'm going to write my story here because I want it to exist somewhere. I need some record of what this game has meant to me to be here.
well, the 'sinking ship' part is no longer as dire, methinks
My active add-ons: [WIP] Ogres Era
My inactive add-ons: Tale of Alan (1.12),The Golden Age (1.12/1.13),XP Bank (1.14),Alliances Mod(1.14) (all add-ons no longer supported)
Co-creator of Era of Magic

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Pentarctagon
Forum Administrator
Posts: 4176
Joined: March 22nd, 2009, 10:50 pm
Location: Earth (occasionally)

Re: My Story

Post by Pentarctagon »

ForestDragon wrote:
UK1 wrote:The original "This is a sinking ship." post made me cry. Physically. It moved me in ways that story, instruments, poetry, and song have all failed. My heart stopped that day and it paused again when I read the "Wesnoth2" post, but now my heart is breaking entirely seeing what's going on with the Wesnoth Board. I'm sorry if this is off-topic, but I'm going to write my story here because I want it to exist somewhere. I need some record of what this game has meant to me to be here.
well, the 'sinking ship' part is no longer as dire, methinks
For the Board, it's effectively a brand new organization that now has to consider the iOS/etc ports, general finances, the licensing issue(s), Steam, etc. That there would be some conflicts and "growing pains" is not unexpected, though such a quick resignation is definitely not a good thing either.

For the "sinking ship" piece, I believe it has gotten better, though it's still not ideal either.
99 little bugs in the code, 99 little bugs
take one down, patch it around
-2,147,483,648 little bugs in the code

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