If you don't want conflict, join Cyrene. You are, in fact, holding your city back otherwise. You don't have to be the big pvper or anything, but you shouldn't be the person trying to turn your city into a second Cyrene. That's been proven to be horrible for cities.
Every time I've issued myself or messaged a request, I've been very firmly told that the Garden will never interfere with the way an Order is run. It's solely up to that Divine and if the role happens to be vacant, you're out of luck until someone decides to pick it up again.
As a member of a small Order that only has two active members, one of whom is the OH, we have incredibly limited options on what we are able to do simply because of how abilities were invested at the time.
It's very difficult to grow interest in a Divine Order when your hands are tied on inducting, promoting, or even allowing people to fully experience pre-Order tasks if they have been set up to rely on Divine interaction. When your Divine is active, I cherish these experiences for helping my character develop and grow, and feel a sense of connection and belonging - when your Divine goes dormant/quits, the absence feels real.
For Orders like the Nihilists that haven't had a Babel in real life years, it's both disappointing and discouraging because it limits on how much you're able to get involved with certain aspects of the game. Do you join the Order of an active Divine even if it's not a realm your character connects with just for the experience of being in an Order or do you forsake the experience? Do you stay in a dormant Order or do you leave?
I understand the position of not wanting to step on toes and Order's being that-Divine-only, but I really wish something could be done at times to help the near dormant organisations that are struggling and actually need the interaction to function properly.
Shout out to @Rhivona, @Dalinor, @Makarios, and any other admin that responded proactively to this thread and reached out for, or provided, feedback. HELP CELANI now reads more clearly and less harshly, and I think it will have a positive effect on Celani applications.
While I'm sure the admin are more aware of this problem then anyone, I think it's pretty clear by now that the current system isn't working very well, and while it's obviously a complicated problem, I don't think that means it's the best it can be.
For what feels like the past several years, only some 3-5 gods have ever been active at one time, in a game that averages some hundred plus players at one time. Not only is that tiny, it's a much smaller percentage then some other games manage to keep. Godroles just aren't very appealing in their current state, it would seem, especially given how short most gods seem to stick about these days.
Some of that can't be controlled, but I'm sure some things could be changed, as well. Right now, taking up a godrole seems like a hard, thankless task. In general, you'll find yourself roleplaying the god and their denizens, taking a significant leadership role in 2+ orgs (house and city, at the very least), creating roleplay events and building things for all those orgs, and doing whatever other admin duties are required, while being divided from the community and the kinds of play that many of us find the most fun. I'm not surprised that so many people don't find that appealing, or don't want to do it for years.
Something has to give. The vibrancy of cities is often very largely dependent on whether or not they have an active god, even in neutral cities, where active patrons create events, offer immersive interactions, and help bump up the level of roleplay. It's clear by now we're not just in a god dry spell, and so without something changing, I think we'll all just have to accept every city having to go godless for years at a time on a not-uncommon interval, and I don't think that's good for the health of the game.
Re-watched Anna and the King for a Introduction to Film class that just started this week. Forgot how much I fucking love this movie.
Which, in addition to the above, started college for the first time this week! It's just a few online classes for the summer (squishing down 16 week classes to 10 weeks made me keep it light for now), but will be starting full time come fall. Despite still incessantly worrying about everything and whether it all will work out, I'm super glad to be taking that first step towards a life I've always wanted to aim for.
Honestly, if I could be guaranteed to hop back to Trey no matter how vested I got, I might apply to be Celani. Doubly so if I could log in periodically to maintain appearances and keep my shops in order. That would require a separation of church and state to rival Saltybrus, but I think that vetted properly people could be trusted to do this.
The crux of the god issue is that it's a volunteer position with the workload and expectations of a part-time or even full-time job. There's a conundrum in that Achaean godhood has become more and more professional over the years, (Celani vs Ascension, stricter rules and protocol, enforced separation from characters and friends) and the workload has increased, (issues, crafting designs, complex RP events, minipets, promo items) but it remains strictly a volunteer position. On top of this is the crushing weight of expectation from the playerbase and their collective tendency to judge quickly and forgive never. While I am certain that the Administration tries to be as flexible as they can with their volunteers, it's still a pretty massive burden to take on as a hobby.
I know a few folks that have started down that road and simply found it to be too much time, too much work, or not enjoyable enough to continue. Unfortunately, Achaea's current model relies on finding these one-in-a-million individuals who have the time, motivation, and deep love of the game to do all this for free, and unfortunately it doesn't surprise me if the situation has become unsustainable. Speaking as someone who enjoys the GM role, (house leader for years, table-top DM, etc) what I've heard and seen of Achaean godhood is just too much pressure and commitment for me to balance with my real-world obligations, which is why I've never seriously considered it in 12 years of playing.
The most obvious solution to this that god roles should be paid staff as opposed to volunteers so that folks could commit to it as a profession instead of an insanely stressful hobby, but I would hope if that was a possibility it would have already been done before now. I do recall the paid "RP Producer" positions in the past, but I'm not sure it's the big RP events that we crave so much as the little things--the everyday presence of a committed god role in our lives--so perhaps that endeavor was a bit off the mark.
If that's not an option, I can't really think of another solution other than drastically reducing the workload placed upon them, which would mean the elimination of things that we as players enjoy. The fact of the matter is that jobs with high turnover have high turnover for a reason, and so you can't expect improvement without addressing those causes.
I get Sabetha's point. Sure we can all continue on in this game without a single bit of God interaction ever again, but at that point should we just do what Imperian did and get rid of them all? If you're a newcomer to Achaea, you open up the website and you're promised Gods. Then you come to this game, and in the current state of the game there are barely any. I understand why. The whole training process sounds long and I understand if not all of them want to step up to that role. It's not easy to fill such a role either. They have to be good role players and prove their trustworthiness with such a big role. Not only that but there is a lot of lore and what not to learn so they don't log in for the first time as that God and seem utterly clueless and getting schooled in things they should know by long-time Order members. I don't know how it can be resolved or if it even can other than all of us having patience, but I think it's wrong to invalidate someone's personal feelings just because they feel like something is missing. I felt for Mhaldor when they went without Sartan because that role is so vital to how Mhaldor is set up in an IC perspective. Who cares if Cyrene isn't so centered on Divine in that manner? The Cyrenian Gods are still important. I haven't played through all the Divine citizens of Cyrene but I can tell you that when they had Scarlatti and Phaestus they were a big part of the general atmosphere and culture of the city. There is a noticeable difference when there are active Gods and when there aren't. Everyone has their chosen focus in Achaea. Some of you like combat, some of you play scholars, explorers and any number of roles. Then there are those of us who prefer Orders above all else in the game, and for many that is severely lacking. Especially for those who've waited a very, very long time (like the Nerai).