When looking for a forum RPG, is the host important for your choice?

Discussion in 'Role-Play Discussion' started by Featherstone, Jun 26, 2016.

  1. Featherstone

    Featherstone Resident Game Owner

    While as an admin I see the importance of using a host you're comfortable with (because I'm not just going to write, but also to deal with all the technical aspects), as a player I never bothered too much - as soon as the board was easy to navigate, I barely acknowledged what site they were on. However, after spending enough time advertising, I notice more and more how many users not only have a 'liking' for specific host, but won't even consider playing on any other one (typically, we're talking about jcink). Do you have the same experience as an admin? And is a board's host important for you as a player?
    Mister Karma and Mim like this.
  2. Star Army

    Star Army Resident Game Owner

    Yeah. I trust self-hosted boards far more than ones hosted on free sites, because it shows the admin has made some sort of commitment. Also, having a modern software is a major plus (something like XenForo) because of features like alert systems, the ability to paste images directly into forum posts, post likes, and other goodies they have. I tend to avoid anything on proboards, invisionfree, etc. Jcink is not a bad host per se (and the guy who runs it is, in my opinion, great) but it's a highly modified version of ancient IPB 1.3 and I find its users are a weirdly insular community.
    Archivist and Mim like this.
  3. SithLordOfSnark

    SithLordOfSnark Resident Game Owner

    I will not join a site that isn't on Jcink. Period. I've tried other hosts and they don't offer what I need.
    Mim likes this.
  4. Star Army

    Star Army Resident Game Owner

    What do you need?
  5. turnpages

    turnpages Newcomer Game Owner

    As a player I want to say it's a little important. Maybe it's lazy of me but I like joining sites on hosts that I have a general sense of the set up and where everything is. Usually this tends to be JCINK/invisionfree. I will look at sites hosted elsewhere if the ad catches my eye but I've yet to see a site outside of jcink/invisionfree with a premise or game set up that appeals enough to make me sign up.
  6. Lure Master

    Lure Master Resident Game Owner

    I have never heard of jcink. My site is XenForo hosted on my own VPS. XF is modern, and maintained by the best developers around IMO. They pay attention to detail, and any security issues that may be discovered is fixed quickly (though, security issues with XF are very few and far between).
    Star Army likes this.
  7. Corinthian

    Corinthian Newcomer Game Owner

    It's not particularly important for me. I look for other things, like writing style, what the rules are, setting, and how well-designed the site actually is... like, the use of illegible fonts or awful colors is a huge turnoff. Also how active they are. The host is way down on my list of importance.
    Elena likes this.
  8. Lure Master

    Lure Master Resident Game Owner

    I agree with most things you say, but disagree with the hosting aspect. Yesteryear, it took hackers 4 to 6 months to crack passwords, that was due to the lack of processing power computers had back then. Today, with computers built for MMORPG's it takes hackers no more than two days to crack a series of passwords. By having my own server that I know has the latest security patches applied automatically, and in a timely manner, I can re-assure my members that their data is safe (as can be).

    I agree about the site design and your read-ability points. The writing not so much, for me, as long as a member tries, that's good enough. Some potential members may not join a site because they feel intimidated by writing/story development of some other members. And that would be a shame, as they may really want to take part. A good effort, and example, will always improve ones own story telling, and that is a point I want my site to make to potential new players.
    Mim and Corinthian like this.
  9. Corinthian

    Corinthian Newcomer Game Owner

    This is entirely true and, I confess, not something I had considered when I made my answer. :) Likely because I am extremely lucky, and married to a tech who took care of all our hosting, back-up facilities, and security measures... allowing me to merely choose things like what sort of software we would like to run! (I do my best to understand how everything runs and make the best choices, as well as being able to maintain my site perfectly well, but I will not claim to be an expert at all!)
    Shriker and Lure Master like this.
  10. Chay

    Chay Newcomer Game Owner

    While it used to not weigh into my decision-making process as to which site I'll roleplay on, it does now. I really like the sub-account feature on jcink and other forum hosts. Having an account specifically for a character is awesome.
  11. Featherstone

    Featherstone Resident Game Owner

    Oh agreed on that! Zeta's Multi-log in isn't *as* smooth, but still practical enough.

    Actually, if the game was very good I could do without, as long as recording more accounts was still possible. Playing multiple chars under the same name just doesn't feel right.
    Archivist and Elena like this.
  12. Waug

    Waug Newcomer Game Owner

    As a regular member, I don't care. I used to hate proboards but I don't think it matters much to me anymore since it's been probably a decade since I actually ever used that software.

    As an admin, MyBB all the way. It's been the most agreeable forum type I've ever worked with.
  13. LunaDeSangre

    LunaDeSangre Newcomer Game Owner

    I've really started liking jcink because of the customization available. I haven't looked at the change in tools for proboards but they do look like they have gotten a ton better. I look at self-hosted sites too but sometimes they get really overwhelming with all of the features. I like a generally simple layout.
    Elena likes this.
  14. Mim

    Mim Resident Game Owner

    As a RPer in the early days it didn't bother me as I simply wanted to write.Now as an Admin and looking at things from that perspective it is important to me as a RPer as well. Some sites I've seen and those have been on both Proboards and Jcink are difficult to navigate for the novice, or even for an experienced player; though I guess that can be attributed to the admin of those boards as I have seen one or two set up rather well. Zeta boards I'm inclined to avoid as they have no email notices for your replies; which to me is important. Zeta boards are though a good introduction platform for a beginner wanting to run their own thing. Nova I won't even look at now, having had three terrible experiences on those. Too many flaws to mention.

    Myself I'm using SMF, which is fabulous, though you do need some coding experience or someone with you to do some of the hard work. But it is worth it. phpBB is quite good, but there are better. If I find someone using VB4, then I'll give them 10/10, as it tells me they are putting in a tremendous effort. (It is damned expensive)
  15. Cynadea

    Cynadea Newcomer Game Owner

    To me, the color of the skin I can use is more important than the host or the codebase. I do enjoy finding my way around easily, but I have a functioning brain, so if the site doesn't blind me and has some kind of sense in it's layout, I don't care if it's proboard, Jcink, SMF or what not. I'll learn. As an admin and coder/skinner, I prefer SMF and Jcink.
    Elena and Mim like this.
  16. ashashashdown

    ashashashdown Fresh Blood

    I personally prefer proboards because I'm used to the set up and I've used those sites for many years now. It doesnt bother me when people use free sites because a lot of people just cannot afford to do so. It doesn't matter a lot to many, I just tend to lean towards ProBoards hosted sites. :)
    Mim likes this.
  17. Mim

    Mim Resident Game Owner

    You would love SMF boards, they are pretty much the same as Proboards, perhaps a little betterer in some aspects :D
  18. Jcink is, like SMF based of phpBB, as is Proboards. There is in fact very little difference in them.
  19. Star Army

    Star Army Resident Game Owner

    Jcink is a customized version of Invision Power Board 1.3.
    The Mother likes this.
  20. Yes that to is a virtual copy of phpBB. They were essentially the first to mass market forum platforms, though there were others around at the time. They came out of the early DIY websites in the mid eighties. Most forum websites use the phpBB formats, there are differences between them, but the style is recognizable among them all.