Just like many jobs, joining Westeroscraft requires an application. No need to stress if you don’t have much background knowledge, or even skill yet. All we expect from you is to follow our guidelines and submit us a basic house using our world textures. Then our team of moderators will critique and provide challenges for you to complete. If you show enough improvement within the the first few and enough dedication, it’s likely you will be part of community. But the standards are still high, and only handfuls still make it through. There is no age limitation, but we expect you to be able to complete our requirements to standard. As well, the server language of communication is English, and proficiency is required. We cannot accept applications with use of a different language.
Probation here is unlike what you may expect. Its a month after acceptance where you as a new builder are limited to building small-scale structures such as homes and farmsteads. A leader will be assigned to you to moderate your ability to follow critique and to inform you of community a green [N] for “New.” In addition you will around tagging homes you build and posting them on a forum thread so that your moderator can provide feedback and sharpen their skills. Once the month is up and 5 homes have been built to the probation leaders satisfaction, the you may lose your [N] and obtain a plot, which will be discussed below
Alas! You have completed the month and have satisfied the probation leaders expectations beyond standards! Go on and build as many castle as you… oh? You still can’t build a castle? Yes, after a month of probation is complete, you’re still not ready for a large scale project that is building a “House” or a large section of developed land, hamlets, and a castle. Instead it is expected you learn such requirements on a smaller scale, through mini-projects which could include a farmstead, holdfast, hamlet or large industry plot. 2 are the minimum to be completed, but it is suggested to have more to establish a stronger foundation with the ever increasing standard Westeroscraft has for its members. These are fun and low stress due to their simple objective. Many people may pick these up simply for a mental break from the heavy planning a full project takes.
After finally building up your resume and spending months learning our standard, you may finally be ready for a full scale project. These projects often cover a large section of land owned to a lord. Therefore a castle, homes, and indication of an economy such as mining or farming. Due to the widespread planning these projects can take from 6 months to several years. More populous or well known locations are often handed up the ladder for highly experienced builders to manage as a server build. Places such as Kings Landing, Winterfell and High Garden have all had several project leaders overlook and plan it’s progression. However due to everyone wanting a hand in such projects they’re designed for better community involvement. Projects have become a fair handful to manage, our dedicatio to medieval research and reliance on logic and not fantasy.
So you decide to take on the stress of managing a project! Congratulations! Now it’s time to start to build an application. Take a look at the project list and dig into some research on what house you think would best suit you. The list is designed to know how much work you’ll be undertaking with each project. We highly suggest starting at a 2-3 level. And saving the 5-6 for those who’ve got years of participation under their belt.
Once you’ve decided where you like to build you’ll need to crack down on the list of requirements in your application.
-Resume A list of mini or large projects you’ve completed.
-Tests: Explained further below.
-Maps: Explained further below
-Research: While not literally required, it is anymore expected that you clearly outline the economy and lifestyle of your House. Provide clear logic to your decisions and be ready to back them up when mods critique you before approval.
-Inspiration: This is easy. Gather the places from your research that you believe are aesthetic and compile images to reference as you work. These locations may be other projects in the game, to concept art, or real life
-Canon: Provide a list of descriptions of your location from the series “A Song of Ice and Fire” which our project is based off of. (We base our world off of the books, and highlight the time between book one and two not the tv show) This is another reason why more famous projects go up the ranks to more experienced builders. They often have a lot of canon to account for which can be a frustration as unfortunately some pieces contradict themselves. And the more you have the more likely this will occur.
Finally post your application online and wait for the feedback to come rolling in, and hopefully, two moderators with an “Approved” in their message!
Testing is all the prototyping needed to show the team of moderators looking through your application what you plan to do with your lands. What is your block palette? What roof types will you houses follow Will they have a flat facade or daubed overhang? Give the moderators an idea of what the project will look like. Some people just build a few examples of low class, middle class and high class houses. Others build portions of the town to really give an idea of the flow of the land. All this testing will be done on your plot – a section of land in our test world meant for you to build whatever you like on and your test. It is expected of you to look around at the pre-existing surrounding projects to base your project off of. Although it is frowned to based them off of objectively dated projects that no longer hold up to standards.
The tests often become a guideline for other builders to look at when assisting you and your project.
This is very similar to testing, but instead its from a birdseye view. Where do you plan to put the castle in relation to the town? How do you plan to plot your fields and how will they get water? How will the homes be arranged in the hamlet and will your project have any fun unique features such as a Septry or Quarry? Mapping is planning all these features and where they will go on the land. This requires screenshots of the land from above or from our dynmap and then going in and color coordingating your plans in detail with a key.
Okay, you’ve got your approval!Now its time to start… yeah you cant build yet. Anymore the project standards require exstensive terraforming before even placing a brick . Terraforming is a relatively new concept thats been on the rise in our community. Before, where we had lands with mountains and trees already placed it has grown in popularity to utilize our Voxel and World Editing has grown. Creating painstakingly detailed lands are currently very trendy. However to avoid doing such work entirely block by block, it requires knowledge of the two coding languages mentioned above. There is strict access to use such codes as they are powerful tools that could do significant damage if not managed carefully.
Voxel provides commands to create shapes and mold mountains or to paint the landscape. World Edit allows more structured manipulation to perform more straightforward objectives such as creating spheres or changing block types. We have also had our team of coders develop code to make our lives easier. Such as our schematic brushes which allow group of number obects to be placed quickly and easily. Such as rather than copy and pasting a tree over and over, we can quickly snipe 20 different trees on the ground with the click of a button.
Being good at terraforming is a highly sought after skill in our community to help mold and paint beautiful landscapes. Anymore the competition for such magnificent landscapes has risen, increasing the overall quality of each project but slowing down our progress to prefect such detailed lands.
Now, you’ve got 50% of the land done you’re ready to start working around the areas you plan to build. But once again, there is another step in the process before pouring the cement. Plotting however isn’t usually too bad, its essentially placing colored (wool) blocks to outline the locations of things you had on your map onto the land. Oftentimes it the just the outlines of things. This is essentially the underdrawing to the painting. Other things this stage includes is assigning each home with a profession and class. We even have special blocks to help you quickly assign each home with such things. Some builders may provide a starter pallete showing new builders what wood they want or stone foundations. Others may provide detailed stories of the person that lives within the house to help immerse visitors when exploring. Generally these stories can get humorous and can create gags amongst the community.
You’ve got it!You’ve plotted, you’ve cracked down on the heavy terraforming, you’ve spent months in anticipation, not you can finally open your lands to building and begin the construction and watch your place grow. This is obviously one of the more fun parts, as you get to watch all your planning come to life and develop before you. As a project leader you can go around and provide feedback in the format of what we call “meloning” above the house. Each builder should provide a tag informing the leader who built it and what the house plans were (I.E it was suppose to be a low class fowler with a hole in the roof they’re repairing.) The project leader will then come around leaving green approved tags or a melon (which provides feedback before approval)
It is also during this stage that you may begin building the castle you wanted to build so bad. And its also many of our builders favorite part, the detailing. Detailing is going in and around and adding those little extra touches to make the space feel real and lived in. The clotheslines over the street, the weed in the corner, the homeless bed under the bridge. These details are fun because they’re the finishing touches to perfect your project. Building is probably the most popular aspect of a project, as it’s the part where things start to come together that you’ve spent so long to see it through.s
It’s done! You’ve gone through all your homes making sure each is perfect and that every interior is to your insurmountable standard. You may think it’s perfect, but your approving mods may not. When you’re done your 2 approving moderators will go back through and ensure that everything is up to par and that they check for anything you missed. Generally its off with few minor fixes (as they should have been working with you throughout the project to improve it) and a congrats.
As mentioned above. How do we give feedback? We have various methods, but one humoursly notorious way is our method of meloning. Which is leaving a block to a wall of melons above a house or section with signs. Some moderators are notorious for their melon-wall-ing. And has become a inside gag. However we also communicate through the forums for long winded critique or in game critique for those who prefer to interact and improve vs those who like to reference back to their critique. Everyone has a different expectation and standard and its highly suggested you drag everyone over to project for feedback. But don’t be dismayed if a builder whines about "smooth reach stone" touching "smooth reach cobblestone" we're all just a bunch of perfectionists.
Plots! Yes! Plots are place, as mentioned before, that you can build what your heart desires. Some build Disney castles, others build 3D sculptures of Escher's Staircases. However, save room because you've got to fit your testing on those plots too. From planning out the natural foliage, to the style of your homes, you’re plot is dedicated to that necessary tinkering around that would waste and clutter space in the main world.
However test world is much more than just plots. Its dedicated to other oddball stuff. From a bunch of peoples real life homes at /warp my house to thousands of different tree species stacked and lined up along one another at /warp tree test. The test world is home to anything that doesn’t belong, but is necessary to have in our main world. Such as our Ikea, where you can hunt down some cool new furniture idea, or go to hogwarts and get sorted for a break. Giggle about at our yearly christmas setups and events. Test world is where so much of the magic happens behind the scenes and is often where the builders bond and have fun.
This server is a community, and while we’re all very headstrong, we are all dedicated to a single goal.
So, how do we keep things to a certain quality or standard. First, lets get an idea of what our standards are; and they're high. When I (Otty) joined, we were still transition away from log framed homes, which are consider "dated." Yes, just wearing gouchos and spiked hair looks bad now, log frames, messy thatch, salt-and-pepper pallets, heavy overhangs, overhangs in genearally, are all now "Out-of style." This is as overtime we've experiment and refined our styles and we've began trends and stylistic preferences throughout the community. Every new project people are asked to bring something new to the table, and with that requirement we innovate our styles. Currently trending are: Flat facades, no roof or thatch overhang, white washed palettes, arrowslit windows, eroded gradients, overtly minimalistic decorum and open floor plans. Most of these are very clean in their style, and its create for a refined final product but they're more detialed and require more through research. Back at the start of the server, research was optional, then it became encouraged, then required, now you need a 5 page thesis paper on research (not really but some builders have and will go so far). By including research and focusing in on realism we were able to scrape concepts such as the log-framed homes, which were unsurprisingly very unrealistic. With this inclusion and preference of realism and research our builds found a happy medium between fantastical and grounded. We can have fun and be creative, but must be wary that medieval castles needed defense as it was their primary function. And everything we build has such thought and detail. Realism is a very high priority of ours even as small of details as the weeds alongside roads, or the unlikelihood of a large crate of carrots being within a farmers house. Sometimes the realism aspect drives people up walls, it hinders their creative freedom, whereas others it allows it flourish. But the realism and research aspect is non-negotiable as it has become ingrained in our community and our standard quality.
Finally, how do we maintain the standards? Well, first and foremost, everything mentioned above is the way we do it. Every plot, every application, every roadblock for feedback is how we make sure everyone's work is the same quality. And crazy enough, arguements also help us maintain quality. Humoursly, their are several debates that have gone down that seem ridicuoulous to those unfamiliar with out community. Debates over the "canon of corn and realism of corn," debates over weeds alongside the edge of the road, debates over a height of a bridge or the likeihood of a army crossing a mountain range. These debates are commonplace in our community and to a generally encouraged upon as long as everyone is being professional about it. In addition our multiple methods of communication — in-game chat, melons/signs, online forum, discord chat — we are able to provide feedback for anyone at any time and to whatever need.
In order to maintain the server there is also a hierarchy system. Which can be explain as such:
Pizzainacup - Geeberry - Jacob Granberry: Server owner and began the project just building the Red Keep with him and 6 friends. Illblew, Mike Prime & Hal9007: Our coders.
Moderator - Mod - Maester: A team of individuals generall consisting between 8 -14 people. THese are experienced builder who have proven both expertise in building and management of projects. Moderators ensure project quality is to standard after completion, manage conflicts, and gain general control and access to the server otherwise such as commands for permission to build or world edit.
Project leader(s): A group of one or more people who have applied and have been given permission to edit and build a house. They are the managers of this specific area and function as a middle tier art director, ensuring that their personal vision for the land is met.
Editor: Overtime this position has somewhat phased out. Editors are those whom are capable, knowledgable and skilled enough to use voxel and worlding editing commands/codes. As a reminder, these are the codes in order to terraform, and do large scale building at a faster rate. However due to abilities to easily make dangerously mistakes this is given to few who have applied. Some only go for Editor-lite which is the same position but you're only allowed to use it for yourself, whereas editors will be assigned projects to those who dont have access to such commands. Editors will carry out the builders vision for the land/terraforming.
Probation leader: Manage a New builders probation to ensure they're following the rules and keeping up to standard. Probation leaders generally have several months experience and must apply to be one by filling out a form criqituing three houses. It is also highly suggested that probation leaders befriend their "new build" to integrate them into the community
Builder: A person who has completed their probation of building a minimum of 5 houses for one month. They have a plot and may start applying for larger projects.
New [N] builder – Probie – Probation builder: A new builder is someone who has recently been accepted to be a part of the team but still is going through the motions of training/probation.
Guest - Nobuild: People on the server but has no permission outside of flying/exploring. They're able to experience and see our work as much as they like, but in order to build anything they must apply.