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Proceeds will go to the existence of this site.

Where's the messageboard?

The messageboard has been closed. Years of terrible MMORPGs with meaningless PvP have cut our tens of thousands of members down to a small handful.

That small handful still used the forums, but there were no new picture stories, or (((HUGS))), or roleplaying bdsm frogloks. Mostly just edgelords. What follows is my goodbye letter:

Goodbye FoH

My favorite thing about MMORPGs is that there's no correct way to play. You get an open world and your hero can do pretty much anything: stay level 1 and become a wealthy cyber-sex worker, put on the right gear to impersonate an NPC and grift other players, or time how long it takes a group to kick you out because you're a vegan and refuse to kill bears.

This isn't about being silly, it's a simple truth: there is no ending to an MMORPG, so the only win condition is the one you personally set.

Most players don't realize this. Worse, neither do developers. They take their open worlds and try to give them walls, urging players to embark on a level 1 to 100 grind that plays out like an animatronic filled ride at Disneyland. That's the experience they want you to have, but is it the one you want?

Flowers of Happiness is about setting your own win conditions, especially when those conditions go against the wishes of developers and other players. It's a support group for goofs who want to defend one little patch of swamp from anything that moves, or turn the auction house into a game of BINGO, or write a script to invite the entire server into the guild and then see how many quit on the same day. After doing this for six years, gaming academics put a name to our style of gaming calling it "emergent gameplay". It's nice of them to give FoH credit in their papers.

FoH attracts each server's most creative and anti-social goofballs by radically encouraging everyone to engage in emergent gameplay.

Sadly, it also attracts edgelords, who see our creative freedom as a chance to mimick Michael Richards' standup. For this reason I'm joining other long-time members in resigning from the forums this year, and I blame my naivete in allowing a toxic culture to fester which has alienated our most creative and fun members.

I'm thankful to all the great people I've met through our forums, the people who encouraged one another and laughed along as we made EQ and WoW truly ours. It was fun watching you do creative and crazy things in-game, making me constantly laugh on guildchat and the forums, and now on Facebook I get to watch you run off to do even crazier and better things in real life.

See you on the internet,
- Frybread

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