The goal of this thread will be to gather hiccups and issues from previous wars and to establish a process for hosting future wars that mitigate or eliminate these issues.
- Too much downtime/not enough playtime: I think we've reached close to the maximum possible playtime at Soakemore this year without excessive playtime cutting into relaxation, footage exchanges, eating, and other important tasks. I don't think we need to try to extract any more playtime out of our wars; the only real way to do this is to keep the events running longer but at Soakemore 2015 there was no way to do this.
IMO, the playlist approach, mixed with the experimental approach works best. We have a core list of games to work with and can set things up on the spot after our warm-up OHS rounds. Soakn' Destroy worked very well and was never planned in detail.
- Handling participants off the group: Not everyone can follow the group and stay for the whole 2-3 nights, and not everyone can necessarily even make it to any games. For hastily organized games, we don't have a mechanism for keeping the "maybe" participants informed and updated with what's going on. At the minimum, we all need phone numbers exchanged, and at best, we'd have the schedule planned out and followed in advance. The latter is more likely to be possible, now that we have more experience with night-centric wars.
This is also a use case for live streaming water wars. Not only can people follow the gameplay going on, we're also able to show where the games are going in general. Unfortunately, there's been a distinct lack of demand for this; I need people like iSoaker, marauder, Ben, etc. to voice in for this. If there's no demand, there's no use for the effort in setting this up.
The most major detriment to this part of the process is remembering to check up. During a game, my focus is on the game, not on my phone or on the internet. Most players will mute their phones during games without exception for obvious reasons, especially during night wars, and most of us will forget to check on our phones when in the midst of refilling blasters, setting up equipment, eating, exchanging footage, etc.
The second issue is knowing precisely how off-schedule you'll be the night before and remembering to update the thread in advance. We'll need to work this into our process after footage exchange: Update the thread with short details of games played and what we currently expect the next day.
We have had people ask for "hardcore" rounds in the past: long stretches of continuous gameplay that stretch up to 24 hours. Accommodating for the "maybes" who can make it for 2-4 hours is going to be nothing short of a logistics nightmare, especially if their attendance is unsure until almost the last minute. While Soakemore was not run like this at all, we still had lengthy continuous stretches of playtime, and this is always how the games will be structured.
- Overall planning: Not all games can be planned in meticulous detail and have that plan followed. Events branch out, people leave and explore, and that's the way we find new opportunities. Our Soakemore night war location was found through this process. We need to be able to account for "off-the-group" participants and work out a process for making sure they don't get left out in future events.
- Designate Overall Location
- Designate Dates and Times (and account for possible small shifts of that)
- Gather Participants/Attendance List
- Designate Playing Locations and Backups
- Designate Playlists
- Contact Info Exchange: Mandatory for all who want to attend.
After Footage Exchanges:
- Check your:
> War Thread
For The Maybes:
- PM contact info to main group before war, especially if you don't attend often and not everyone has your contact info.
For Everyone: Use the following means of contact:
> PM if it's contact info.
> Phone call if it's urgent.
> Text if it's timely but not urgent.
> Post in War Thread if it's a scheduling/events update. (Especially if it's a minor time shift/delay; those are the easiest to forget.)
> Post in War Thread if it's an attendance status update.
The point is, we shouldn't need to plan everything in close detail for a successful event for everyone. We should have a script and a general set of principles to remember and follow.
We should not be focused on updating the war thread more than once every 24 hours except when convenient or when major changes happen. (Such as cancelling Sunday's games.)
Anyway, discuss. Most of our wars are sufficiently planned, but we will always end up hosting events with less planning than usual; it just happens. When these types of wars happen, we need to fall back to checklists, and thus it'd be good to refine this. (i.e. Mods, feel free to make edits to this post as you see fit.)