MEETING GM SILVANI - PLAYER RELATIONS

Team Comment - Comments from GM Silvani - January 18, 2002
I don’t think I can remember a time in my life when there wasn’t a computer or some sort of game to play. I spent my childhood with my hands wrapped around a game controller or a keyboard. With all the Ultimas of the past under my belt, it was only natural to be excited about the idea of Ultima Online.

What fascinates me still is how strong UO is going even after all these years. I grew up where you would play a game for a month, maybe two tops, before growing tired of it. Perhaps you would pull it back out of the closet every now and then to play it again, but overall, the attraction was short-lived. I have been playing UO for over 4 years, and this fact still amazes me. What is it about UO that holds the interests of so many? I believe it is the abundance of different game play styles within the game. You have the ability to do so much and change what it is you wish to do at the drop of a hat. The ability to bake bread one moment, and go kill some dragons the next is one of the diverse aspects of UO. Different people find different things enjoyable, and this creates a complex community because of one game bringing all these factors together.

Ahh… but I have yet to introduce myself. For the past year and a half, I have gone by the name of Silvani. I am currently a Senior Game Master, and I must say that this is the best job I have ever had. Not many people can lay claim to waking up in the morning and being happy about going to work.

I came to work as a GM with almost 3 years of UO gaming experience behind me. During that time, I effectively played almost all aspects of UO. There are so many different play styles within Ultima, and after playing most of them, I can say that I am quite unbiased towards whatever type a person chooses to play as long as rules are followed.

My early days in the game were dark ones indeed, because I played the role of a thief and murderer. As time passed, I took a more active role in the community by becoming an avid role-player and helper to those in need. This branched off even further when I was accepted as an Elder, which allowed me to create quests for other players. I truly enjoyed volunteering and explored other avenues by becoming both a companion and external tester. Finally, the day came when it was posted on the UO.com website that there was a Game Master position open. I leapt at the chance and was lucky enough to be one of the ones hired. The best way I can describe my job is by saying that I’m like a super hero. I help people in need, and swoop down and punish those that are breaking rules.

Though it may seem like GM’s have godlike powers, we are not “all knowing”. Game Masters need help from the players in-game in order to perform their jobs properly. Many people question the wait times associated with calls. I cannot express enough the need to clarify pages that are sent into the global queue. For example, include the name of the person that you are calling about instead of just saying "some guy". This will expedite the process. If something as simple as a name is included, we can start looking for the player and checking into the situation. The simple facts of who, what, when, where, why and how should be the focus of your call. I know it may seem like 40 characters is not very much room, but you don't have to be worried about writing complete sentences when requesting help. You would be surprised at what we are able to understand after all the pages we go through in a day. Many players will even page into the queue with no spaces between their words in order to include all of their information. It's amusing, but it also gets the job done.

Players are truly the core of the community. If it weren’t for the players, Ultima Online would simply be just another single-player game. My thanks go out to each and every one of you for making Ultima Online the wonderful game it is.

Silvani
Player Relations
Ultima Online