Staff meeting 2012-09-19
Here’s a brief(!) summary of last night’s staff meeting. Due to some bad experiences in the past, I would like to point out that nothing discussed in these meetings is particularly secret. Also, the staff has no intentions to interfere with team matters – that is solely up to their respective team leaders.
Besides Oxy and Spike Himself, and at the expense of TurboTabs preferring to go out and get massively drunk (really, he was), this was the very first staff meeting for everyone involved. So, warm welcomes to Combo and Rugzy and their respective teams. Welcome and much appreciation also to Will for taking over leadership of Reditio after Spike Himself’s sudden part with the team. And lastly welcome to some familiar faces: Drackk and Reservoir.
StarCraft 2 legend Zealos remains absent as other obligations require his attention, but Spike did manage to exchange a few words with him so as to bring him up to speed, before the meeting started.
Website ‘team manager’ plugin
Spike is working hard and spending many hours on developing a WordPress plugin that would allow for match results to be displayed on the website, and for team leaders to manage their teams. It is still not finished and has a long way to go yet. Eventually it should be possible for us to host our own cups with a solid admin backend, as well as automatically fetch match results from ETF2L. For results not from ETF2L, team leaders would have to add these manually. Again, this is in the future as the plugin is not finished yet.
Rumour has it that ex-TC.Dinosaurs medic and alcohol induced LAN-attendee Fallen is currently in the process of teaching himself the ropes of WordPress plugin development, so that he would be able to aid with the team manager plugin.
Cups and other events
We have discussed a number of things here. First off, we have plans to host a medium sized TF2 competition, involving teams within as well as outside TC. Nothing too huge, no prizes. Not the first and/or second time, anyway. Who knows what the future may bring, though!
Secondly, we plan to continue Oxy’s famous Worms cups. Perhaps even grow this to a point where we host “official” seasons for the veteran Worms players. As a side note and just to clear up some potential confusion, this concerns the game Worms: Reloaded.
Penguins leader Combo is planning to host small events on saturday evenings. Just a little something that people can turn up to and play games together. Not much details are known yet, Combo is yet to work out drafts and further planning.
Last but most certainly not least, Oxy has taken on the challenge to host friday night gatherings. These gatherings are to bring everyone in TC together and do something fun. Turn up, drink some beer (or coke for Drackk), and have a good time with your community mates. The first one of these will be next friday, September the 28th. More about this in a news post soon!
Branching out to other games
(i.e. recruit teams in other games)
To get straight to the point: This is not going to happen. First of all, we use mumble. Nobody else in the world outside players of source engine games (TF2, CS:S, ..) uses mumble. Secondly, the scene that do use mumble and aren’t TF2 (so basically Counter Strike) aren’t very enjoyable people to hang around in mumble with. Ex-CS:S player Will confirms. Combo points out that recruiting a new team from a different scene will create an “us and them” scenario and fears they will not integrate well with the community.
In short, if we as TC are to have competitive teams in other games, it will have to be people we already know, people that are already part of our community.
Shifting focus to other games
Slightly related to the previous point, we discussed whether we should actively start looking for other games to focus on. We all know TF2 isn’t going to be around forever, and when it does die, we would not want TC to die with it. We have played many games as a side in the past, but none of them seem to stick. Will points out that this is because we have no goal in these games; there is no competition, like TF2 has ETF2L. Everyone agrees that we should not actively look to move away from TF2, but rather just wait for a game to come to us. TF2 is not at the end of its days just yet.
Combo would like for us to have a go at Minecraft. He is willing to run and pay for a server as well. This is most definitely something we are going to be looking into in the weeks to come.
If anyone has any other suggestions, by all means do share them in the comments below!
Back when TC was just one single team and not yet the community it is today, the team received much support from various figures in the ETF2L community. As teams were recruited and TC grew bigger, Spike was determined to return this favour.
To give this some more background; roughly a year ago Oxy, with the help of some others, started a project that became known as “TC.Academy”. This project consisted of finding 6 new players that were to form a team, get sponsored by TC and receive mentoring from the more experienced players in our community. The project was a great success; the newly formed Div 6 team quickly grew in skill and were playing Div 5 games within half a year. As with all good things, the team eventually came to an end. Some of the players from that team are still around and are playing in Div 4 and above now!
Then, a few months ago, we had a “Guidance Scheme” project, which was to serve as a minimalist approach to “mentoring” – we had a Steam group where new people would sign up, and they would be assigned a mentor from TC. This project was less succesful due to a number of factors, a major one being the lack of clarity towards mentors of the purposes of the scheme, another being mentors underestimating the amount of time and effort it requires to properly mentor a player and/or team, and one more being the new players showing either no interest to learn at all, or growing too much an ego too quickly, rendering them incapable of listening and learning more.
Finally, to get to the point, we agreed in this meeting that we do want to start another mentoring project. What form exactly this will take is yet to be discussed. It was agreed that Spike will jot down a little draft with ideas later this week. This draft will be discussed and further worked out by whoever wants to be involved (do comment below if you’re interested!). One thing is certain though; we have learned from our past successes and mistakes.
Attitude and initiative
This wasn’t really discussed much in the meeting but it needs to be here regardless.
TC’s signature attitude is; be pro-active. If you want something done, don’t ask someone to do it – do it yourself. Take initiative. The TC staff is but a group of volunteers who have shown such dedication and effort. Nothing stops you from doing the same. If you want to run a big project, just go for it. TC is merely what YOU make it be.
All we want to point out here is that if anyone in any TC team ever has issues with other people, be it team members, leaders or someone in the staff, you are always very welcome to talk to any of us.
The very same applies to team leaders who face difficult decisions regarding their team’s members, or just aren’t so sure how to deal with certain situations. We have some seasoned team leaders in TC who will undoubtedly be able to give useful advice on such matters.
On a side note, we also have players that have been playing TF2 for years. Anyone that is relatively new to the game, or the competitive side of it, is naturally more than welcome to ask for any help at all. We have several players who play or used to play at a level of Div 3 and/or above: Medics in the form of Reservoir and Spike, all-rounders like Oxy and TurboTabs, impressive demoman skills represented by Gladdy, amazing roamers Miek and Marik, TF2’s best ever pocket soldier Drackk, and, because I don’t necessarily want to exclude anyone, many others!
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