Moderating a game like Dark Galaxy can be difficult, a lot of the game is based around player generated content and the community as a whole; Declarations of War have always been a highlight. Sometimes, however, this can descend into unfriendliness, inappropriateness, as well as general toxicity, whether direct or perceived.
It’s important to remember that Dark Galaxy is supposed to be a fun game, and we do not condone any form of bullying, discrimination, hate speech or harassment. We strive to develop an inclusive community, where all are equal regardless of your origin, or how long you’ve played the game.
So here are some basic rules to consider, and abide by when being involved with the Dark Galaxy community. Failure to comply may result in moderator action, from forum bans to game bans.
Everyone is Welcome and Everyone is Equal
This is a simple one, from new players, to old, age, gender, nationality, sexuality, race, etc. Players deserve to be embraced as one with the community. While I appreciate that some players would rather band with like-minded players, that binding force should never be a point of attack towards them.
For example, an alliance called “The British Empire”, despite the name, does not represent all British players in the game. While in discussion calling ‘The British Empire’ farmers is acceptable, saying “The British are Farmers” isn’t. ‘Verbally’ attacking alliances isn’t prohibited (to a point, emphasised by the rest of these rules), but attacking people because they happen to be British is, and doing so will result in sanctions against you, your account and potentially your alliance.
Be Excellent to each other
There’s really no room here in Dark Galaxy for people with malicious intent, so treat everyone with respect, period. If you have personal issues with someone, keep them out of the game, out of the forums, and out of the public space. Feel free to report them to myself or the moderation team if they are behaving inappropriately publicly and we’ll take care of it. Don’t engage, and don’t feed the trolls.
Settle your disputes in-game
Rule of Acquisition #34 - War is good for business. Being a loudmouth on a forum is easy, actually winning your battles might be slightly harder. I encourage everybody playing to attempt to resolve your issues in-game, rather than in public on the forums. Nobody likes a sore loser, nor a sore winner. A lot of discussions can get derailed and dragged down by one or the other. A lot of players who aren’t involved certainly like the spectacle of war, and the reports that come out of it, but at the same time may be turned off by bickering or arguing on the forums. The Feature / Discussion forums exist if you think something was unfair and may need to be looked at, as well as the Bug Reporting forum if a bug has had a negative impact on the war. These places are the most appropriate to handle said issues, but try to be as objective as possible when reporting, and attempt to see the issue from both sides. As such, arguments about game mechanics will be removed from threads in the wrong forums.
When the Round is over, it’s over
Send your GGs, your WPs, and even your EZs. If you win, celebrate with those who you defeated, and if you lose, take some time to reflect on what you may have done wrong. There’s no shame in accepting defeat regardless of the cause, and holding the hand of the victor up high. Do not continue fighting on the forums with each other between rounds. Take a breath, and accept how things turned out. As above, if you think something was unfair, address it to the relevant forums so we can take a look.
It should probably go without saying, adult content, or even implied adult content (I’m looking at you, ‘couch gag’), is prohibited in Dark Galaxy, and it’s forums. I ask that all players keep things PG-13.
While these days Dark Galaxy is a relatively adult community, there’s always a chance that younger players may be joining our ranks that you’re not aware of. While I’m not opposed to expletives being used here and there, excessive or extreme use of them may result in post removal, or edit, at the moderators discretion. I’m not going to create a list, but keep this in mind and use your best judgement.
Alliance Leaders are Responsible for their members
This will be a controversial one, but I feel it’s necessary. An alliance member is a reflection of an alliance, their ideals and should be held to such standards. If we experience a problematic member, we may choose to report it to the leader of their alliance for action. This action may include expulsion from the alliance, or a talking to (at the alliance leaders discretion). Continued poor behaviour from the player may lead to disciplinary actions against the alliance, including disbanding the alliance (without the ability for members to join a new alliance for the rest of that round), to potential banning of the Alliance Leader for the remainder of a round.
We’re very careful not to have cheats and exploits in the game, but they have crept in occasionally. To keep things simple, something is NOT an exploit until it has been explicitly been defined as such by a Developer in the Announcements forum (depending on the severity, may involve an in-game note as well), and all usage of it until that point is considered fair use. This is a difficult issue to resolve, as an in-game behaviour may seem bad, but also may be intended… It may require an additional review to determine whether that intended behaviour was intentional or not, but if you have any concerns, feel free to raise them with me directly. The only people who can officially define something as an exploit, are the Dark Galaxy development team, and not the moderator team.
As always, automation inside Dark Galaxy isn’t permitted. While we’ve allowed several greasemonkey scripts to be published, our official rule of thumb is that no script can automate a button press on a page, or automatically interact with a page for you. If you create a script that reads the page, and collates the data in interesting ways, we’re happy for them to be used (and may even include them in future feature updates), but they shouldn’t perform any actions a player would have to do manually. This will always be a tricky one to enforce, but we have the tech to do it, and are keeping our eyes open at all times.
You’re not an authority on Dark Galaxy
I feel this shouldn’t need to be said, but needs to be anyway. The only DG authority that exists is the DG development team. Assuming our motives or general train of thought is unwise. We’re not infallible and can make mistakes, hell, we’ll even make changes against our better judgement if reasonable discussion can be made to sway us (See the re-introduction of Food in Beta 2), but polite discourse and compelling arguments are important to allow us to progress. With the introduction of the community comity, we hope to establish more transparent lines of contact with the players of the game to help drive things forward. Anyone who attempts to speak on behalf of the Dark Galaxy team will have their posts removed (with a referral to us, to make an official statement, or clarification).
The decision of the Development Team is Final
No ifs, no buts. Primarily, we’ll be working on the game, and not getting too involved in the moderation of the forums and public space, but if an issue does get escalated to us, or if you would like us to take a look at a decision made by the moderation team, we’ll review it (in confidence), and decide based on our opinion and interpretation of these rules.
The Moderation Team
Trust is the most important thing in our moderators, and we trust them implicitly to make decisions to ensure that the public space is kept clean and tidy from unnecessary behaviour. However like you they are players. We trust them to keep any potential bias in check, but we want to avoid situations where you think moderation action is unfair, due to their potential alliance or affiliations in-game. If you feel like you, or someone else, have been unfairly moderated, please contact the dev team directly and we’ll review the case in confidence.
The Current Development Team
The Current Moderation Team