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Thursday, November 21, 2013

How a clan decided to take new player experience to a new level!


So a week ago I started "The Academy". The goal was straightforward - form a clan to help new players get into the game, provide them with equipment, advice and people at their own level to play with. This was an idea I had been thinking about for some time, then in global a week ago a few players mentioned that SUN should fund one as we have lots of cities and resources. It might have a been a bit of a troll but it seemed to make sense to me - if anyone had the resources to fund such a project it was SUN, and being an officer here put me in a great position to make that happen.

The Academy is lead by Dirk Gently, my alt, and I've been putting in a lot of time finding and helping new players. There are two members of SUN who are helping me and have alts in the clan, and together we look out for low prowess players looking lost in the starter towns or asking for help in global and invite them to join. Once a player joins we say hello and give them a one page welcome letter containing important information not covered by the tutorial. Whist a player is in the clan we teach them about the game, provide them with equipment as they gain prowess and encourage them to explore the world and try different things. We also teach them the best ways to gain prowess, and the most efficient way to spent it. Once a player has enough prowess and experience to both understand the game and be somewhat effective our goal is to find them a suitable clan to join so they can experience the content the rest of us do, PvP, Sieges, Sea Towers and other such endeavours.

We've had mostly positive feedback so far, although some criticism that this is just a SUN alt clan or a new zerg clan. I'll answer that here by saying that The Academy is being run independently of SUN - I'm taking advantage of my position as an officer is SUN to provide the Academy with equipment, resources and many player cities to explore. The Academy itself isn't going to be sieging any holdings, nor is it going to take part in any large scale PvP or interfere in any sieges. It is politically independent of SUN and is something I want to do to benefit everyone because I love this game and it would be great if those who do decide to try it actually get to experience the things this game does do well.

Apart from me we have 36 members. Two of those are SUN alts helping me with admin, and another one is an alt from an NA new player helper clan who's come to see how we are doing things. Alongside with a guestimated few spies and alts of people trying to figure out if this is legit, I would estimate we have around 25 genuine new players who are learning the game. Some have just started and and gained no more than a couple of K prowess, but quite a number have passed the 10k prowess bracket and are passing into the 20s. We've got members from all over the place so the language barrier is a bit of a problem, but I'm doing my best to work with them.

This is what we've been up to one Week 1:

Created a Darkfall "cheatsheet" containing loads of vital info about the game and covers most the first questions people ask:

Registered domain and placed a forum there for our members:

Created a clan bank full of useful equipment for members:

We've done some feats I never thought I would ever do:

Gathered Anima for mounts:

Trawled the waves for Prowess:

Including secret nighttime trawling:

An a new photo of the first few recruits:

I'm treating all of these recruits as new players not new characters. We all know that the fastest way to gain prowess on a new character is to sit AFK in a trawler for hours on end, and because of this people have a tenancy to give a new player a trawler tell them to do that until they have 40k prowess. This might be a great way to power up an alt, but I've found new players like to explore and pve a little and the prospect of spending their first 40 hours in a brand new game AFK isn't very appealing. I've done my best to make sure everyone knows the fastest way to gain prowess, but I've also let them know there are many other options and I've helped them with whatever they have chosen to do.

I hope this info helps anyone who is curious as to what is going on in The Academy, I'll be done another (shorter) report next week with how things have been progressing.

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