Screeps Discord?



  • So I was a bit surprised when I couldn't find a Screeps Discord server. I know that Slack provides a better place to submit very long pieces of code, but I was still surprised me that I couldn't find one.

    Am I just blind, or does Screeps not have a discord server yet? I set a template server up if not because ... why not. A few people have joined it already.

    There is a link to the template hidden below the admin note if you click it.

    ADMIN NOTE: This is just a Discord server created by @Gankdalf, it is not going to become an officially maintained one

    https://discord.gg/heFDAnA

    .

    Since it seems to have become a big argument on the pros and cons of Discord vs. Slack. I will try to list the different things that have been stated about both.

    Discord

    • Possible future game integration as described by @artch
    • Voice chat
    • Doesn't by default allow user-created channels
    • Allows role restricted channels
    • Allows syntax highlighting, but no line numbers or snippet collapsing. Would need to use hastebin or pastebin
    • Ability to block other users who are bothering you. This functionality isn't as good as I would like it to be, but it at least hides their message text and name.
    • More moderator/admin tools
    • More of a social network. You can see what people are playing, who is online, and potentially join other games with people through discord game integration.
    • Allows muting and hiding channels, but forces you into all of them by default
    • Doesn't sort DMs by server, since it is considered one big platform
    • Not allowed at some workplaces... I guess?
    • Displays current game, which cannot be disabled on a server by server basis. It can be completely disabled.
    • If something can be done by admins, a bot can be created to handle it for you. For example, it is possible to mimic the Slack user-created channels feature with a custom bot. It would, however, work with console-like commands, not a UI.
    • Full chat archives can be viewed without paying
    • GitHub integration would require a webhook for each repository+channel pair, which would take more time to setup and manage than Slack.
    • Three users are a majority when discussing discord 😂

    Slack

    • Everyone is already there
    • Allows user-created channels
    • Allows invite only channels
    • Allows full syntax highlighting, line number, and collapsing without the need for hastebin
    • Cannot block other users
    • I personally don't know the full potential of Slack moderator tools, this was just a comparison point that was noted
    • More of a business program. Useful for setting up tasks, looking at code, and working as a team.
    • Doesn't force users into any channels, so muting isn't necessary.
    • DMs are only applicable to a given server, so you can separate out screeps easier from your other games... I mean work.
    • Generally accepted in workplaces that don't allow discord ... I guess?
    • Doesn't ever display your currently played game or application.
    • If functionality is missing, I don't know that there is anything you can do in Slack.
    • Cannot view chat archives more than a few days old
    • Directly integrates with GitHub for easier management of changes


  • Because there is slack...
    While I personally prefer discord too I don't think it is a good idea to introduce a fourth place.
    With the official forum, the official slack channel and the steam forum are plenty of options already available.

    💯


  • It's a fair point considering the size of the community. Although, I just don't want to open anything other than discord 🤣



  • Biggest problem with the Slack is that it's designed for handling teams of folks that all will get along amicably, there's no tools available to filter or deal with individuals that cause issues except leaving whatever channel they're in, unless a moderator steps in and kicks them off the Slack entirely.

    There's literally no other moderation tools on Slack at all, and zero as an individual user.

    Screeps might get large enough that model won't work long term, as unlike an official Discord there's no way to ignore or block individuals you personally find problematic, which is why I'm not on the Slack server honestly, already ran into a few of those so I left the server.



  • You have valid concerns and I think it is time to switch to discord.
    Slack could be the closed "Dev" channel for all who are actively invested in the screeps development.
    Discord is as community tool far more appropriate.

    Now all that's left is to convince the devs @artch maybe?


  • Dev Team

    Yes, we considered Discord as a chat platform too, and still haven't decided. Slack is historically more familiar to developers who use it at their daily job. On the other hand, Discord allows more features like integrating with the game client, e.g. an option to join Arena battles (we'll have the Arena mode eventually).

    In theory we could maintain both, but such diversity might be harmful for the community. We need more opinions on this topic.

    👍

  • Culture

    I don't prefer either one.
    Most people's workplaces use slack in the office which was one of the big reasons we switched.

    That being said, Discord offers more diversity in managing permissions which in turn will make it more easy to manage. We can even link IRC to connect to discord with some setup to make it "work safe".

    If we go through with the transition to Discord there will obviously be a Screeps Discord managed by the Screeps team.


  • YP

    the advantage of slack for me is that I can be in there all day at work 😉

    also I never have seen spam on slack, while I have had it on discord.

    I guess I could also live with screeps on discord ,)

    👍🏻


  • Discord is better for game community indeed, but slack gives you more compact experience.Happy with either decision.



  • My main objection to discord is the lack of optional channels.

    In the slack, we have 163 public channels, each with a different discussion topic. In discord, we'd either have to greatly pare down this number, or force everyone to have all 163 channels in their sidebar.

    If that were fixed, I would be 100% happy with moving to discord.

    👍🏻


  • I think unification should be the primary goal, and platform features secondary. Whatever the decision, it should be approached aggressively (that is to say, if Discord is chosen, Slack should be archived and terminated).

    I have a lot of issues with Slack, but most of them overlap with Discord as well, and they are philosophical in general. This doesn't apply as much to Screeps, since we are not strictly in a working environment, but many of the same issues are encountered. This article is an interesting read and echoes many of my thoughts:

    https://abe-winter.github.io/plea's/help/2018/02/11/slack.html

    Again, not strictly applicable, but perhaps interesting none-the-less.

    One of the biggest issues I've had with Slack is fragmentation of channels. I'm never really sure where to start a discussion, or if a channel is even really alive. Does Discord solve this? I'm not sure.

    Discord has better searchability in my experience. I also prefer its mechanisms for private chatting.

    With Discord, voice chat becomes an easy to use option, should anyone desire it.

    Slack's 'Code or Text Snippet' feature is nice, and very convenient for sharing large blocks of code. But I often wonder about the merits of posting such large chunks, and whether or not there is much value derived.

    Discord-Screeps integration could prove interesting.

    While Discord lacks those large chunks, it does support code formatting, along with syntax highlighting. It also supports markdown, which I have fallen in love with, and Slack does not. That one is big for me.

    My personal preference is Discord, but I am not sure about the cost, not speaking financially, of switching platforms. It would be very unfortunate to reduce the size of active community members because of a tech switch. However, maybe Discord is attractive to some folks who are put off by Slack.

    More discussion is needed. I will certainly give this some more thought, and maybe it's an excuse to do a little semi-formal comparative analysis.



  • Now all that's left is to convince the devs @artch maybe?

    I would point out that you have managed to obtain the consensus of a grand total of three people here in this forum. I don't believe that counts as a "consensus" by any means, considering slack has on average 400 active users.

    Personally, I'm not a fan, for several reasons.

    Firstly, I'm not a fan of every random dude in the screeps community being able to see what I'm playing. Discord doesn't allow me to disable game detection on a server to server basis.

    Secondly, Discord doesn't allow the collapsing of large code blocks, and frankly code posting in general is annoying. This is liable to make sharing code more difficult, or more spammy. Possibly both.

    Thirdly, voice. In my experience, Discord has some of the worst audio codecs apart from skype. There is no reason for the amount of bandwidth it takes up, and we don't need a bloody voice chat for Screeps.

    Fourth, (and this will affect those new to discord less than others)- I have fifteen bloody servers already, and because discord is dumb, it likes to display things using icons, not with names. Slack doesn't do this because you're logging onto a specific server.

    Fifth, I can't get on discord at work. I work IT, so my job has alternating downtime and busy segments, and I like to talk screeps and code during that free time. Slack is good, because it's a business communication application. I can't just open discord, a gaming voice comms app, at work and I know I'm not the only one.

    Sixth, Discord doesn't have server specific user DM sorting. That is, if anyone in Screeps sends me a DM (and I tend to DM a lot of people) that gets added to a general pile of user DMs. Given the size of the screeps server, this could get out of hand very quickly.

    Another, less specific issue, comes in the reliance on admins to create new channels. Regular users have much more limited control, which I understand is partially a positive thing, but the bitching about "Go to the channel for that" is going to get much, much worse if people don't have the ability to create channels for things.

    Stepping Back For a Moment: I am somewhat concerned by the idea that three people constitutes a majority consensus (though other replies have appeared since I started this tirade. @artch I have mentioned in the past the need for a polling system for users, and I think this is a specific case for it. While I would be happy to set up such a system myself, I have considerable IRL commitments.

    👍🏻👏


  • @cashewthecat said in Screeps Discord?:

    I think unification should be the primary goal,

    I'd just like to point out, if unification is the primary goal, we already have that. Whatever your reasoning is for wanting to move to discord, it isn't this.



  • I think unification should be the primary goal, and platform features secondary. Whatever the decision, it should be approached aggressively (that is to say, if Discord is chosen, Slack should be archived and terminated).

    Since we're currently unified on slack, I would argue this decision should be primarily feature-based. If its unification only we're looking for, we shouldn't even be considering starting or moving to another platform. However, if we agree on discord being better feature-wise and/or philosophically, aggressive archiving sounds good.

    I'm curious about your objection of fragmentation of channels. What kind of topics are you unsure about? I've found most things I want to post or discuss fit well into at least one of the public channels, and slack's ability to have any number of specific channels ensures there's some place any single thing fits in.

    I guess it does make broad discussions a bit arbitrary, but there's always #general for that.

    If we were to go to discord, sure, we'd have clear channels to put things in. However, those clear channels would be necessarily limited in number, and we wouldn't get to keep track of interesting discussions which happen in side channels.

    In slack, I can read the archives of #servers or #operatingsystems and see what people have been talking about specifically about those two things. If we were to limit ourselves to discord, with all channels being open by everyone, I don't think we could sustain the number of unique channels we have today.

    https://abe-winter.github.io/plea's/help/2018/02/11/slack.html

    This is definitely an interesting article on slack, and I'd be convinced not to use it in a workplace. This seems orthogonal to using it as a game-discussion server, though. We do suffer to an extent from the "search" drawback, but none of the others are relevant to an open discussion board unrelated to a workplace.



  • @knightshade said in Screeps Discord?:

    @cashewthecat said in Screeps Discord?:

    I think unification should be the primary goal,

    I'd just like to point out, if unification is the primary goal, we already have that. Whatever your reasoning is for wanting to move to discord, it isn't this.

    I wouldn't say I want to move to Discord, my post was mostly stream of consciousness thoughts about the pros and cons given my experience on both platforms. I reiterate, I believe a strong community is much more important than which technology we communicate via. I also believe, however, that a technology that makes communication difficult can weaken a community.

    I take no stance on Slack vs Discord at this time, my only goal is to foster discussion and raise points.

    👍


  • @daboross said in Screeps Discord?:

    In slack, I can read the archives of #servers or #operatingsystems and see what people have been talking about specifically about those two things. If we were to limit ourselves to discord, with all channels being open by everyone, I don't think we could sustain the number of unique channels we have today.

    One thing that annoyed me when I opened slack was that I was immediately told that I couldn't view the chat logs unless I paid.


  • Dev Team

    Guys, I'd like to highlight this a bit again:

    On the other hand, Discord allows more features like integrating with the game client, e.g. an option to join Arena battles (we'll have the Arena mode eventually).

    Screeps Arena is a huge separate project with great potential that we'd like to introduce in 2018. And Discord would integrate with it smoothly, regarding matchmaking, finding a party, spectating, etc.

    See here: https://discordapp.com/rich-presence

    0_1518600627239_chrome_2018-02-14_12-30-17.jpg 0_1518600594119_chrome_2018-02-14_12-29-40.jpg

    👀


  • @daboross said in Screeps Discord?:

    Since we're currently unified on slack, I would argue this decision should be primarily feature-based. If its unification only we're looking for, we shouldn't even be considering starting or moving to another platform. However, if we agree on discord being better feature-wise and/or philosophically, aggressive archiving sounds good.

    Features are meaningless if there is a migration to a platform where 80% of the installed user base has some predisposed distaste for the new platform, and simply no longer communicates. That is more my point. It's not only unification, it's unification on a platform which suits the communities needs.

    I'm curious about your objection of fragmentation of channels. What kind of topics are you unsure about? I've found most things I want to post or discuss fit well into at least one of the public channels, and slack's ability to have any number of specific channels ensures there's some place any single thing fits in.

    This is probably more of an administration/maintenance thing, but I am part of about a dozen channels, and over the past week exactly 3 of them have had any activity. In several cases I was unsure of which channel to join (screepsmods vs mod-development), and some cases I just have no idea what the channel is for. Again, this isn't a problem specific to Slack.

    If we were to go to discord, sure, we'd have clear channels to put things in. However, those clear channels would be necessarily limited in number, and we wouldn't get to keep track of interesting discussions which happen in side channels.

    I think a reduction in channels would be a good thing. If the numbers i'm reading are right, we have about 2 active users per channel right now.

    In slack, I can read the archives of #servers or #operatingsystems and see what people have been talking about specifically about those two things. If we were to limit ourselves to discord, with all channels being open by everyone, I don't think we could sustain the number of unique channels we have today.

    As far as I can tell, this doesn't really work. Most of the channels I'm interested in tell me that the archive is unavailable without laying down some cash money.

    I'll reiterate what I've said elsewhere, I'm really not on either side of the fence here, I'm mostly interested in promoting discussion and figuring out what is the best option for the Screeps community.



  • One thing that annoyed me when I opened slack was that I was immediately told that I couldn't view the chat logs unless I paid.

    Yep, this is definitely a pain. It works when you're only looking at ~24 hours of backlog, but we've gotten to the point that more than that disappears.

    I'd mainly like to move to a platform where this is possible. In slack, it used to be, but paid restrictions stopped it. In discord, these discussions wouldn't be able to exist outside of large all-encompassing channels. I agree slack isn't ideal here, but it's better than Discord in terms of finding relevant discussions.



  • @cashewthecat said in Screeps Discord?:

    This is probably more of an administration/maintenance thing, but I am part of about a dozen channels, and over the past week exactly 3 of them have had any activity. In several cases I was unsure of which channel to join (screepsmods vs mod-development), and some cases I just have no idea what the channel is for. Again, this isn't a problem specific to Slack.

    Just for comparison, I'm a part of 45 channels. 7 of them (#python,#quorum,#screepsplus,#botarena,#cpu-clinic,#operatingsystems,#servers) have regular, active, relevant discussions. The other 38 irregularly have messages, but when they do they're always messages relevant to the topic. I don't see this inactivity as bad, though, it's just a way to get things which are interest when people find them.