SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

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SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Tawmis » Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:45 pm

So... apparently the site is gone, and now for sale. Bummer, because that site was a staple for a very long time in the Sierra fanbase universe.
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Mostly » Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:55 pm

That's too bad. The forum had been a ghost town for over a year, too (other than some random spam bots).
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Tawmis » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:13 pm

Mostly wrote:That's too bad. The forum had been a ghost town for over a year, too (other than some random spam bots).


I asked if anyone had the source code, because I'd gladly host a portion of it off LarryLaffer.net similar to what I did with the Manhunter Shrine... I just hate seeing such great content disappear.

I think forums in general are a dying breed, unless it's for an official site for an active game. Like there's a form for "Beamdog.com" - the folks making all the "Enchanced Editions" of various games (Baulder's Gate, Icewind Dale, Neverwinter Nights), which is moderately active. But fan forums? (There's quite a few for Neverwinter Nights I am aware of - even with the recent buzz of the EE version of NWN - the fan sites are quiet). I think social media put the nail into that coffin... things like Facebook allow you to create Pages and Groups... and for the most part, make it easier for administrators, as it removes a bit of the "anonymousness" of it all as well as removes dealing with "[Russian] Spam bots" as frequently...
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Collector » Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:01 pm

Ask Frans.
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Mostly » Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:40 pm

Tawmis wrote:
Mostly wrote:That's too bad. The forum had been a ghost town for over a year, too (other than some random spam bots).


I asked if anyone had the source code, because I'd gladly host a portion of it off LarryLaffer.net similar to what I did with the Manhunter Shrine... I just hate seeing such great content disappear.

I think forums in general are a dying breed, unless it's for an official site for an active game. Like there's a form for "Beamdog.com" - the folks making all the "Enchanced Editions" of various games (Baulder's Gate, Icewind Dale, Neverwinter Nights), which is moderately active. But fan forums? (There's quite a few for Neverwinter Nights I am aware of - even with the recent buzz of the EE version of NWN - the fan sites are quiet). I think social media put the nail into that coffin... things like Facebook allow you to create Pages and Groups... and for the most part, make it easier for administrators, as it removes a bit of the "anonymousness" of it all as well as removes dealing with "[Russian] Spam bots" as frequently...


Indeed forums are kind of the old dinosaur on the block, replaced by social media and especially Discord in gaming communities. I think forums will always have a place on the web, like for niche communities such as this or communities like Vogons. Forums will still be more resourceful and work better as archives of important information, but social media is where people go to discuss news or just chit chat.

Something weird happened at SpaceQuest.Net, though. Whenever they switched from their old forum software/layout (darker theme w/ blue and black) to the newer one (lighter theme w/ white and gray IIRC) the forum activity dropped off almost entirely. Before that there were a handful of active users, but when the forum updated it was like everybody instantaneously stopped posting.

I didn't post at SQ.net but lurked from time to time to check Spaceventure updates. It's almost fitting in a depressing way that SQ.net went belly up before the game had a chance to come out.
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Tawmis » Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:13 pm

Collector wrote:Ask Frans.


I will. But as Musically Inspired said (on FB about this) - Frans kept a tight hold on it. And while I could grab it from archive.org - it doesn't feel right, without his permission, since it's his work.

Mostly wrote:Indeed forums are kind of the old dinosaur on the block, replaced by social media and especially Discord in gaming communities. I think forums will always have a place on the web, like for niche communities such as this or communities like Vogons. Forums will still be more resourceful and work better as archives of important information, but social media is where people go to discuss news or just chit chat.
Something weird happened at SpaceQuest.Net, though. Whenever they switched from their old forum software/layout (darker theme w/ blue and black) to the newer one (lighter theme w/ white and gray IIRC) the forum activity dropped off almost entirely. Before that there were a handful of active users, but when the forum updated it was like everybody instantaneously stopped posting.
I didn't post at SQ.net but lurked from time to time to check Spaceventure updates. It's almost fitting in a depressing way that SQ.net went belly up before the game had a chance to come out.


I wonder if the activity was based around the Space Venture game; because there was a definite resurgence of posters there, when that started up... and as the updates to the Kickstarter continued to become more and more sparse (which, even today, they're still very sparse... and it's been how long now since the "release goal"... but when you get a small group doing the game, these kind of delays happen - as seen with the Hero-U game as well...) I can't help but wonder, that when SpaceVenture does finally release - if SpaceQuest.net would have seen another spike in activity had it continued.

I don't know Frans reason for taking the site down. Whether it was financial (tired of the monthly fees and then the yearly renewals), or if it was something else entirely, and I won't pry - because why he took it down, doesn't matter, really. I just really get sad seeing how much time and effort and love went into that site - and the idea of all those great resources, just going away. It's hard enough to find Sierra related communities out there... and I get it... most people who are playing Space Quest are probably on the Steam or GoG forums, because that's where they purchased it, and that's where they can go for official support... so, as I said, forums are a dying breed... and so is activity on such fan sites... so it can be discouraging to continue to run a site that seems to be generating so little interest. :(
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Datadog » Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:11 am

This is the second time I've seen the Virtual Broomcloset shut down. The old website was my first and, for the longest time, only haunt on the internet. The first time I used the internet for something besides schoolwork was Yahooing "how to beat Space Quest 4". Once the VB showed up, I spent the next ten minutes printing walkthroughs so I could read them on the school bus going home. It's sad to see the logo disappear again.

I just found a lot of stuff still exists over on Jess' old site, though. Mostly walkthroughs and fan-art. I'm fairly surprised any of that's still there.

I think forums will always have a place on the web, like for niche communities such as this or communities like Vogons. Forums will still be more resourceful and work better as archives of important information, but social media is where people go to discuss news or just chit chat.


Personally, I feel like forums are like cozy, stress-free hangouts. Social media has its allure, but it's usually too busy for me to follow or get involved in. With a forum, I can drop in, read how everyone's doing, and just listen if I don't have anything to say. It's a nice respite from the rest of the internet. Especially these days.
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Tawmis » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:10 pm

Frans van Hofwegen wrote: I got a back up, guys, don't worry. I will e-mail Musically Inspired when I have got the time. I never got around updating the site with that responsive design. The original html code is well over 10 years old and in a horrible state. It takes way too much time rewriting it. It is all fun and games for a depressed teenager, but unfortunately I simply do not have time.


So at least there's a backup and he's willing to share it with Musically Inspired.

Datadog wrote:This is the second time I've seen the Virtual Broomcloset shut down. The old website was my first and, for the longest time, only haunt on the internet. The first time I used the internet for something besides schoolwork was Yahooing "how to beat Space Quest 4". Once the VB showed up, I spent the next ten minutes printing walkthroughs so I could read them on the school bus going home. It's sad to see the logo disappear again.
I just found a lot of stuff still exists over on Jess' old site, though. Mostly walkthroughs and fan-art. I'm fairly surprised any of that's still there.
I think forums will always have a place on the web, like for niche communities such as this or communities like Vogons. Forums will still be more resourceful and work better as archives of important information, but social media is where people go to discuss news or just chit chat.

Personally, I feel like forums are like cozy, stress-free hangouts. Social media has its allure, but it's usually too busy for me to follow or get involved in. With a forum, I can drop in, read how everyone's doing, and just listen if I don't have anything to say. It's a nice respite from the rest of the internet. Especially these days.


I agree - while social media (mainly Facebook) is nice for having Groups/Pages, to potentially reach a larger audience - my preference is forums over social media to chat it up.
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Mostly » Tue Dec 12, 2017 10:22 pm

Datadog wrote:
I think forums will always have a place on the web, like for niche communities such as this or communities like Vogons. Forums will still be more resourceful and work better as archives of important information, but social media is where people go to discuss news or just chit chat.


Personally, I feel like forums are like cozy, stress-free hangouts. Social media has its allure, but it's usually too busy for me to follow or get involved in. With a forum, I can drop in, read how everyone's doing, and just listen if I don't have anything to say. It's a nice respite from the rest of the internet. Especially these days.


I agree and also prefer forums. Social media is too chaotic and disorganized for me to follow with any regularity. Plus, there's a bit of pressure to constantly remain connected else being 'out of the loop'. As you said, forums can be more relaxing for a variety of reasons.

Larger gaming communities (Gamefaqs, IGN) have weathered the storm better than the smaller ones. Then there's reddit which can feel more like a forum or like social media, depending on the size and type of subreddit.
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby Rath Darkblade » Mon Dec 18, 2017 6:06 am

I also agree re: forums vs. social media. Faceborg, Twitter etc. change too rapidly for me to be able to follow anything regularly. Forums 'feel' much more comfortable. :)
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Re: SpaceQuest.net - Gone.

Postby MusicallyInspired » Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:01 am

My biggest problem with social media is that it's all designed (especially Facebook) to use your real identity so there's little to no anonymity anymore, which forums provided. I don't mind people knowing who I am, but I do mind them having access to photos of me, my friends/family lists, etc. You can't privatise everything. Or rather, it's a pain to maintain all that. I originally just wanted Facebook to use with my close friends and family. Not the entire internet, which it's turned into. With forums I don't have to worry about anything to do with that as it's its own thing without any connection to my private life or details.

Plus, no cool forum schemes.

As for SQ.Net, there's a lot about that that went on over the years that rubbed me the wrong way (I was on the admin staff for a number of years) and the whole ordeal over the past couple of years since SpaceVenture was announced in particular really made me uncomfortable. As a result I'd be surprised if Frans ever does agree to let anyone host his site. He's so very very (to the point of unfairly) protective of his baby.
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