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January 2018 Announcements

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by Polaris, Jan 1, 2018.

  1. Polaris

    For official threads only. Do not PM.
    Staff Account

    May 30, 2014
    January 2018 Announcements.
    2017 has come and gone, and it's time for a fresh start!


    The name of the game with this month's announcements is fresh starts! We have a contest returning (and revamped) from last year, a new set of events, and several changes and additions to our rules. Many of these changes are in response to suggestions from the previous survey, which ran in November. You'll see even more additions later this month as we finish things that we're currently drafting!

    The most noticeable of the changes is the removal of the mod mermaid. While the mod mermaid has been a part of SA for a long time, we've also seen an increasing amount of confusion about what it is and how it works, as well as a decrease in the amount of times it's been used. This should not be a significant change on the player side. If you feel uncomfortable, you're encouraged to request a change of topic. If the mods feel the need to change the subject, they'll do it the same way they've been already, and will simply escalate with clear words, rather than an image of a fishcat.

    The canon ICC has been going excellently, but we've noticed a few things that were overlooked when it came to the rules. The following applies to all ICCs:
    While cursing is allowed, please do not be excessive with it. Please do not use slurs. If needed in character, simply write around these things, such as -calls name a nasty slur under their breath-.
    While the second rule applies only to the canon ICC:
    While the non-canon ICC allows people to drop in and out freely, please be considerate when departing the canon ICC. As much as possible, please try and have your character leave or be otherwise unavailable so that the people you are RPing with will be aware of your availability, rather than dropping out mid-conversation. If you absolutely must go, let your partners know OOC!​

    We've also made several edits to the companion rules to help them be clearer. Among these changes is an addition to the way we treat child companion characters:
    The exception to the standard companion rule involves child characters, specifically those young enough that they are unable to travel far enough away from their caretaker to be considered NPCs, Students, or Citizens.

    Multiple people play this type of companion (all of the companions caretakers, generally two) and they only count toward half (.5) the two companion limit on a character.

    The players able to play this companion have to be explicitly stated and linked on the companion's app; that is anyone who may babysit or be responsible for the toddler or infants care.

    It is also up to those playing this companion who will play this character when they're older enough to not be under constant supervision (4 years of age).​

    Power Vouchers
    Power Vouchers were previously affected by the change to power rules, but we've revamped them again to help make things a bit easier for players. We have removed expiries, and instead players who are inactive for six months will forfeit their vouchers. Rather than vouchers being worth five posts, each voucher is instead worth a single post, but all vouchers have been multiplied by five. If you had one voucher before, you now have five. Similarly, the limit is now fifteen vouchers, rather than three. All previous power vouchers have been grandfathered into this system. If you had a voucher that was for a specific character, it's now considered general, and no longer has any expiry.

    In addition, you can expect to see more opportunities to get power vouchers in the future, as we plan to make them more common overall.

    Moving forward, claims will be done automatically by members of the staff. When a character is accepted, their claims will be automatically added, and players will only have to post for registering a business or changes (changing a characters name, increasing grade, etc). In order to facilitate this change, we will not be accepting new claims from this point on.

    However, we need every member to please make sure all your applications are up to date. If your apps are out of date, your claims will be wrong when we redo the claims on the 15th. Please make sure all your applications are up to date before then!

    The post spree is currently ongoing, and will continue until midnight PST tonight!

    Running throughout the month, we have the Fresh Start contest! This contest encourages players to wrap up old threads, start new ones they've been putting off, and start the new year off right! While last year we ran this as a competition, this year we're focusing it more on self-improvement. While we will be recognizing our top scorer, everyone is encouraged to participate and earn some power vouchers!

    This year features the return of the Cozy Cabin event:
    Starting an annual tradition, Madame Gardenia has decided to open her ski lodge and cottage in the mountains to the residents of Manta Carlos.

    Cozy Cottage is an ICC event set at the Manta Carlos mountains in The Woods, spanning from January 13th to January 15th.​

    @Lazzy is a long-time member with a great and inclusive attitude. Hilarious and well-liked, he's always there to great people in the Cbox or make a joke to ease any possible tension. He's easy to get along with and helps to further people's plots and lore in a way that feels organic and unique.

    Each of his characters has a trademark comical sort of joking method, while all maintaining an individuality that is refreshing and noticeable. If ever you're in need of someone to roleplay with or just hang out and chat with in the Cbox, Lazzy is your guy.

    @Pallas's Nyota Magarian-Xia is a hell of a character, and it's surprising we haven't seen them show up here yet! She's got eyes like tiny suns, kickass boots, and a take no prisoners attitude. Everything about Nyota's history is downright wild, from the fact that she ate a sun god to the fact that she can speak Klingon.

    We've seen her popping up in a few threads around the site, and every single one is a delight to read. Pallas plays her excellently, and Nyota has so much life to her that she practically jumps off the screen.

    As always, you can drop your own nominations into the nomination thread!

    Zine, Skins and Annual Survey
    This year we made the unfortunate choice of pushing the zine submission date back due to a busy October/November. As a result, we had a much lower turnout than usual, and a result there won't be a zine this year. Those who submitted are still free to claim the relevant badge, and encouraged to post their work in the creative corner!

    We have a poll up here for what skin you'd like to see restored next! As things stand, they're unfortunately a bit broken, and Kyros is going to be going in and touching them up.

    Since we just had a survey in November, the annual survey has been pushed back a bit to give it some space. You can expect to see it in the coming months.
  2. Bijou

    Advisor Administrator Donator

    Jul 14, 2005
    Character Hub:
    Posting Status:
    #2 Bijou, Jan 1, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2018
    Hello everyone, Kyros here!

    So some of you might have noticed, @Romi is spotting a new name color. I am very happy to announce that Romi is getting a promotion, the first BIG promotion like this in the last eight years or so, to becoming the first co-admin of Starlight Academy.

    This was a very big decision and not one that I took lightly. In fact, I have pondered over this decision for a good majority of 2017. Introducing someone to the admin part of things has been both scary and exciting for me and I would never consider doing it with someone I didn't trust. I believe first and foremost in the care of SA and want all members to feel like the people in charge have THEIR interests in mind before all else.

    Fortunately, I do trust Romi. Romi is a wonderful part of the site, and is someone I trust with all of my heart and believe they have the best interests of the site in mind. I have ran SA alone for years now and I always believed that running it alone was the best decision, but over time I have come to trust Romi and the feedback they bring to the site. I know she loves SA, and in fact has put it first in her life many times, before her own comfort and schedule. Romi has demonstrated to me time and time again that she cares about SA, and my vision of it, and that to me is more than enough to demonstrate that she belongs at the head of the team guiding our vision.

    I'm excited to see what she can bring on board, and I promise you that it will be nothing but exciting. You've already experienced the best of what Romi has to bring, and I'm looking forward to working with her in 2018.

    To anyone who is anxious, I promise that Romi loves SA and only wants the best for it, and I will be with her every step of her new adminship. To anyone who is excited, I'm right there with you! I expect great things from the future. And to everyone who is reading this, thank you for being with us during 2017, because 2018 is going to be even better.
  3. Polaris

    For official threads only. Do not PM.
    Staff Account

    May 30, 2014
    January 2018 Mini-Announcement
    Three announcements in one month? Say it ain't so!


    We've got a lot to cover this month, so we're doing a second announcement, filled with reminders, new info, and a preview of what's coming!

    Remedial Grade
    We've seen a lot of characters who don't fit into the traditional grade structure, and to accommodate this we're adding a new grade: Remedial.​

    If your character does not fit into any specific grade, for example because they have no formal schooling, they might be played in purely remedial classes, where they take lessons from a variety of grades and receive individual schooling. The focus of remedial classes is to catch the student up to where they should be, and it's uncommon for a remedial student to stay in that 'grade' more than a year or two.​

    If you have a character who fits this specific category, feel free to edit it onto their applications right now!

    As mentioned in the last announcements, we're changing how we do claims. Starting on the 15th, all claims will be handled by staff upon character acceptance. Players will only have to update claims post-acceptance, for example if their character gains or loses a job, gets promoted, or moves to the next grade.

    Please make sure all your applications are up to date by the 12th.

    We're going to be updating the who's who to make sure it's 100% up to date in the next few days, and on the 13th/14th we're going to be redoing the claims, so please make sure you're up to date before then!

    Species Abilities
    A suggestion from our last survey, we're putting together sample species abilities! These templates will be free to use and modify, but will allow players who don't want to spend a bunch of time figuring out their demon/vampire/angel/werewolf's species abilities to quickly drop them in, simply by referencing the template. We're still working on both creating and balancing these templates, and you can expect to see them in the next few weeks!

    Again, players will be free to ignore these samples if they want - but if you've ever been like 'they're just a normal vampire!', this will be for you.

    New Events
    This coming weekend, we have the cozy cabin event, running from Saturday through Monday. This will be a fairly chill event, but you can expect to see some hints and involvement from our next event, later this month:

    Wildlife Conservation is the next part of our interdimensional creatures event. While the random invasions have stopped, that still leaves Manta Carlos with a whole lot of unexplained supernatural creatures running around, and not all of them are friendly. This will be an event both IC and OOC. Characters involved will be choosing to sign up for one of three tasks, compensated (although not terribly generously, there are a lot of people) by the island for their time.

    Players (and, characters) will get to choose between one of three tasks, each of which will feature a rapid fire group thread lead by a member of the staff. There will be no post order between players, with each player having 48 hours to reply to the mod before they're skipped. Signups will run from the 15th-19th, and the event will start on the 20th. You can expect to see this event fully featured in the mid-month announcements!

    The General Contest is still ongoing, and is seeing some great participation!

    We're also looking for Spotlight Nominations for 2018!​
  4. Polaris

    For official threads only. Do not PM.
    Staff Account

    May 30, 2014
    January 2018 Mid-Month Announcement
    Events, Contests, and Updates oh my!


    Wildlife Conservation Event
    We're trying a new format for event: A rapid-fire, plot focused thread led by mods acting as GMs! This event is connected to the Creature Invasion in November, and you can find all the details here.

    Contests and Spotlights
    As always, we have a new round of Spotlight Voting, where you can help decide the winners!

    We're also halfway done through our Fresh Start Contest, where starting and finishing threads can get you power vouchers! If you're already participating, make sure to keep your post up to date!

    Optional Species Templates
    As mentioned earlier this month, we've put out a whole set of optional species templates! These are for players who want their character to be a common species, but don't want to write out species abilities of their own. You can find them all here!

    Exempting the Business and Public Services List, all other claims are now updated! If you see an error or a missing character, please post here to get it corrected.

    Rule Clarification and FAQs
    To clarify already existing laws, the following was added under the community center description:

    In order to ensure the center is safe and friendly to all, several restrictions are made very clear via signs near the entrance. Drugs and alcohol are not allowed on the premises, and while weapons can be carried, they must be secured. Brandishing a weapon within the community center is a criminal offense.

    Breaking these rules won't get a mod talking to, but might very well get your character arrested.

    We've also added three new FAQs:

    Staff Changes
    @Hyper has stepped down from being staff to focus on real life, and we wish him the best!​

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