Realization of GP Forums
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Currently, the main community hub of GP is located over at Discord, which is a platform for real-time chat. Having forums implemented on GP would contribute towards increasing the overall quality, organization and possibilities of various debates, analyses and guides.
The word 'quality' refers to the detail and meaningfulness behind discussions on a random topic. At Discord, the entire mindset behind posts is different than that of the forums. The main factor that makes the difference is time.
On Discord, the chat is a traffic. It's all in a rush, with users attempting to share their points as fast as possible, which leads to short and shallow posts, many times without any clear arguments and essential detail presented. If one person indeed takes their time to write an in-depth post, it is quite possible that the topic has already changed three or four times while the writing itself took place, just for this said in-depth post to then also be swamped by more or less spammed messages.
The forums, on the other hand, fundamentally operate differently. There, a post isn't outdated if it isn't posted as a reply to a topic less than half a minute after the initial post was made. The essence of time isn't a primary factor there, but falls below the factor of topic and discussion in importance. As such, users can take their time to truly break their points down and write a meaningful post, rich with information, that can actually attempt to present something other than getting the satisfaction of chatting with someone out.
This point relates to the point of quality, but is essence, it focuses on the organization and archiving of past posts. What almost all forum software seen on the internet offer is a profile page of a user, from where various info can be accessed, including all past posts and threads created by that user.
Discord has the possibility of keeping message logs as well, but no one looks at those, as it's primarily spam, swamped over by more spam. The forums, however, by default offer the overlook of a user's activity, from where a person can link multiple times to a single point they had made without writing it anew, or alike. Since the posting history can easily be accessed and time being of less essence as shared in the previous point, the posts themselves tend to be written and formatted more elegantly.
The posts created being able (and actually desired) to be accessed at any time is another huge factor that pushes forums up. Should any guides and analyses be written up, with formatting tools also available for optimal presentation, they would remain there for as long as desired. In other words, it wouldn't be effort input for a one-time talk as in Discord, but truly a write-up that one can be proud of and potentially share later on whenever a chance arises.
Another essential part of organization is that a forum board can and usually has multiple forums, each with its own focus. This is similar to how a Discord server has separate channels, just that in the forums itself, topics can further down be broken into threads with different purposes, while a channel is a single place where everything is thrown into. This becomes an issue for more active channels on Discord, while forums can remain elegant.
There is a belief that if a moderating action is taken in an active Discord 5 minutes after it has happened, it's already ancient history and unjustified. Whether such belief is justified or not, forums don't have that dilemma. By being as organized as they are, posts can be reported and the whole overlook on them made more efficient. There isn't a single chronological line in which they are generated, which makes the older posts be quickly swallowed up, but there are ordered locations of where they exist. As such, they can be located and deemed appropriate or not better in specific situations. Moderation of such posts also has different possibilities that Discord does not offer as a simple chat platform.
While the forums can be used for debate on already-existing topics and features, they can also be used as a (temporary) replacement for desired features that do not yet exist on GP for one reason or another. An example would be user team builds. With the organization and formatting possibilities a forum board offers, writing up a team build or even a whole guide while arguing the points shared can be made possible.
The games GP covers are, for the biggest part, tactics-based. As such, these tactics can be debated and broken down through debates. While chatting about it is nice, these games do have the potential to be talked about in more detail, which tends to be the fun factor for many people playing them. Forums allow for such in-depth debates, while Discord is not as suitable. To encourage quality and organization of community interaction, do support the idea of forums!
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