Code of Conduct
Members of Shadow & Flame are all representatives of our kinship. We expect all members to show respect for other players both in and outside of the kin remembering that there is a person behind every character in Middle Earth.
* With our kinship comprised of so many varying personalities and backgrounds the task of keeping our community a stress free and fun environment for everyone is critically important. More than 20% of the kinship is female. We are all over 18 and adult language IS permitted. However, we should refrain from allowing comments to cross the line and become offensive.
We are not saying you can’t goof off with your friends but you should ask yourself two questions before you broadcast your message in kin chat 1) Do I know this person well enough to say this? and 2) Should this be said in a tell? In order to keep our kinship as friendly and drama free as possible we are letting everyone know in advance that we will not be tolerating this kind of behavior when we see it in kin chat or in vent.
* If you invite a guest into our vent and they get out of line then stick up for our kin-mates and straighten the guest out. If the guest continues, have one of the officers kick them from the server.
* Abusive language in chat channels or in vent will not be tolerated and will be dealt with on a case by case basis depending on the severity of the offence.
* We will not tolerate Rank Farming in the Ettenmoors. If our leadership determines that a player is rank farming than that player will be expelled from the kin without a warning.
* Trolling is prohibited, whether it is in the LOTRO forums, GLFF, OOC, or the Advice channel in the Shire. Players caught trolling will receive one warning and if it occurs again the player will be removed from the kin.
* Debates and opinions are welcome in our forums, but please post your thoughts and opinions in a respectful manner.
Recruitment and Promotion
Anyone who wishes to join Shadow and Flame may apply through our web site. Once you have submitted your application our recruitment officer will look for you in-game so that he may conduct a short and very painless interview. Your application will then be posted to the web site officer forum and all officers will cast a vote. Applications which receive five or more votes will be accepted and an invitation will be extended. The application process usually takes up to seven 7 days but that depends greatly on how easily you are contacted in-game. If you have applied and not heard from our recruitment officer within three days, you may send an in-game mail to Seonsson or Lorriele advising them of the best time to reach you. Additionally, if you know that you may be hard to reach in-game please make a note of it on your application so that appropriate arrangements can be made.
Shadow and Flame is a kin that places great importance in supporting the members of the kin. We help each other because we know that as each of us improves, the whole kin benefits. We share our knowledge of the game, we share resources, and above all, kin don't let kin PUG--grouping together is what Kin's are for, after all. We are actively seeking new, like-minded individuals to join our online family. We accept all types of players from the very casual to the Tier 2 challenge raider, and every class is welcome. Below are our guidelines for acceptance into the kin and the recruitment process. It is not just a single event, but a month-long period of us getting to know you and you getting to know us. That way, we will be sure that our kin is a good fit for you, and you can be sure you will be happy here.
First and foremost, this is an active kin. Active kins require active players (not to be confused with players that play all the time). We expect members of the kin to run content with other members. That doesn't mean that every time you log in, you have to group up. Sometimes you just want to chill and solo. But if all you ever want to do is hang out with yourself, this kin isn't for you. If you don't like to engage with other people either in vent or in kin chat, this kin isn't for you.
This is a raiding kin, although you don't need to raid to be a member. If you are interested in raiding, once you become a full member, we will help you realize that goal. However, if you are joining us only so you can go on T2 challenge raids, this kin definitely isn't for you--we want members that are here for more than just raid time and do more than just raid. We expect you to help others attain raid status, and help the raiders replenish consumables--even if it is just by supplying the resources to crafters.
We also believe that it's important to be good citizens of Middle Earth. As long as you wear the kin tag, you are representing the kin. If you can't behave responsibly, then this kin isn't for you. S&F is our online family. We've worked long and hard and put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into making it a great place for a lot of people. If you can't give, don't expect to take. Our recruitment is pretty strict because we want to keep it a good place for everyone.
Minimum age is 18, but being 18 doesn't guarantee admittance. We want mature players. That doesn't always come when you hit 18. Sometimes that maturity comes before 18, but we had to draw the line somewhere. Sorry
After you apply, we will require you to run at least one group instance with our officers and current members. We want to get to know you some before we admit you. We want to know how you play and how you act. Kind of like trying on a new pair of pants before you buy them. Don't worry if you aren't a great player. We aren't recruiting only great players. We're recruiting only great people.
We're also going to ask you a lot of questions about your previous play time, who you hang around with, what kind of play style you prefer, etc. Don't take it personally. If you want to ask us questions about the kin, our leadership style, how things work in the kin, feel free. You should be comfortable with us, too.
After we get to know each other a little and everyone agrees you would be a great addition to the kin, we'll invite you as a recruit. The first month is a "trial period." We'll continue to get to know each other. See if it's a good fit. You should spend this time engaging with other kin members and becoming part of the group. Sign up on the website for various events. Join in the pick up groups in the evening--start some yourself. Offer to help. If you need help, ask. Show us you ARE S&F. The first thing you should do after being invited is going into the Social Panel Kinship and click on the NOTE button at the bottom. Type Main if that toon is your main, or the name of your main if it's an alt. You can include your craft if you want to, as well.
If all goes well after that first month, we'll make you a full member. However, if it's just not working out, the officers will talk to you about it. Find out why. Maybe you have something going on in your life, and you just can't make the commitment you thought you could. Whatever it is, we can discuss. Maybe you are still a good fit for the kin. Maybe it's just not going to work out. If that's the case, we'll part ways amicably.
What you shouldn't do during that first month is beg people for money. or gear. or to power level you. Or constantly ask people to take you thru one quest after another. Remember, it's a two way street. you want help, you should also be giving help. If you're asking for help in kin chat more than you offer help when someone else asks, it's probably not a good balance.
Our kin includes people of varying ages, from fairly young to super old. We come from lots of different back grounds and walks of life. Respect others in kin chat and vent. If you like off color jokes and someone asks you to take it to tells or move to another vent room, do so. Likewise, if you have a tendency to be offended by pretty much anything, you might want to consider growing a little thicker hide. Please try to avoid the sensitive and/or controversial subjects in kin chat and vent. this is a game, we're all here to have fun. Leave those real life subjects for real life.
Becoming an Officer
Officers should regularly encourage group content, promote kinship events, and put the needs of their characters second to the needs of the kinship.
Officers should have at least one T2Challenge ready character and should be able to complete on level content at the Challenge level.
Officers must display a positive attitude towards LOTRO and Turbine.
Seonsson does not choose new officers. When an officer position opens up the entire kin is notified. Those interested in becoming an officer will have an opportunity to apply for an officer position. All of the current officers will then vote on the candidates. Candidates must receive at least five votes to be promoted. If none of the candidates receive the required votes then the position may remain open or unfilled.
Being a leader is a heavy responsibility. Shadow and Flame looks to its officers to carry the torch and, through their actions, enrich Middle Earth.
Carrying the torch does not mean you have to do it all. Not everyone is chatty in vent or cut out to be a raid leader, but if you do just a few of the following items below the entire kinship will see that we have active leadership that is committed to making our game as fun as possible.
1) Regularly post LOTRO and Tolkien related materials in the Forums. Keeping the forums full of new material will keep people coming back which will also lead to more signups for our events.
2) Each night you are on try to organize group content. 3 and 6 man content will help gear our kinmates and keep everyone active.
3) Help people level and grind virtues. Virtues are critical to our ultimate goal of completing T2 content. The more people who are done the more options we will have.
4) Schedule and lead events. They don't have to be raids. The name of the game is keep people active. You can run virtue events, trivia, or chicken runs. It doesn't matter to us, just watch that they don't fall in the middle of a raid time.
5) Regularly encourage people to visit the website and sign up for events.
6) Mentor someone who is learning a class that you are good with. Making our players better will make our kin stronger.
7) Be social and encourage people to come into Ventrilo. Particularly take the time to get to know new kin mates who may not know very many people yet.
If you feel that you would do well as an officer, we encourage you to speak with Seonsson and apply for an officer position when one becomes available.
Any current officer that remains inactive within the kin for thirty days will be demoted. Their position may open up to the rest of the kin or it may remain unfilled depending upon the needs of the kin at that time. More than simply logging into your account occasionally is required to be considered an “active” officer. We understand that real life events may prevent an officer from remaining active and it is up to that officer to notify Seonsson if there will be a period of inactivity and move forward from there.
We hold our officers to very high standards, and an officer who violates our code of conduct will be removed from the kin. If any member has an issue with an officer they should notify Seonsson immediately.
The following sections can be skipped if you have no intention to raid with us.
Shadow & Flame T1 & T2 Raid Policies
- Any member or ally of Shadow & Flame may sign up for any raid that they wish
- For T1 and T2 raids, the raid leader will choose who goes based on the composition needed for that raid. Composition will always come first when selecting the group. If there are more sign-ups than spots available, players will roll-off for a spot in the raid, but again, composition will be taken into consideration so not everyone will be required to roll-off. Those who signed up as Tentative will not be able to roll against those who signed up as Available when more than 12 people have signed up unless the Tentative player is needed to fill a vital role for that raid. Members of Shadow and Flame will never be required to roll off against an Ally.
- If you are rolled out of a raid, then you will receive an auto-in for the next raid you sign up for should there be a roll-off required in that raid. A volunteer sit-out does not qualify for an auto-in. In order to get an auto-in, you must go to the kin web site, and in the thread titled Auto-In you must make a new post with your character’s name, the name of the raid that you were rolled out of, and the date that you were rolled out in the title of your new thread. An auto-in is for your account, so any of your characters may use the auto-in, however it must be kept in mind that we need a certain amount of flexibility for the sake of composition. An auto-in is only good for two weeks, after which time it will expire.
- If you sign up for a raid, you are expected to be there and ready to go 15 minutes prior to start time. Further, signing up for a raid means you are committing to three hours of availability. Please do not sign up for a raid if you can't stay for the duration.
- The raid leader reserves the right to reorganize the raid if he or she finds that the composition is not working. This may mean that players will be asked to switch to other characters or other players may be asked to come in to fill a role. This should not be taken personally, and we will do everything we can to ensure that all members are able to complete T1 & T2 content if they wish. Raids can often times be repeated in the same night with different characters or the raid can be repeated on another night. It will save a lot of frustration if we can all be flexible and understanding of the raid leader’s position.
Learning Runs and T2Challenge Runs
It is our policy to include everyone we can on T1 content. When new content is released, a Learning group will be formed for T2 content, and a Challenge group will be formed for T2C content. When the Learning group has a strat for T2 content, we will begin cycling players in with the goal of including all who are interested. Completing T1 and T2 content is important for individual characters as it usually unlocks armor or drops the good loot. Challenge content is much more difficult and not everyone will be included on these runs particularly when we are initially developing a strat for it. Completing Challenge content should be seen as an accomplishment of the kin as a whole. It is not about completing deeds for individual characters. It is about taking the best that we have and tackling the most difficult content. We are fortunate to have so many Challenge Ready players in Shadow & Flame, but these raids only have so many available spots and group composition can make all the difference.
- All learning and challenge runs are Invite Only. These runs are posted on the kin calendar and sign-ups are required, but it is strictly up to the leader of the raid to choose who will go on these runs based on who has signed up. There will be no roll-offs for spots and auto-in cards will not be awarded or used.
- We do not have a seniority policy and no one but the leader of the raid has a guaranteed spot in the group.
- Any member or ally may sign up for a learning or challenge raid. However, if you are not selected to go on that raid we expect you to respect the decision of the raid leader. Not being selected should not be taken personally. Sometimes it is purely a matter of needing a certain composition. If you would like to know why you were not selected you may ask the raid leader in private after the raid is completed. Coming into vent to complain or disrupting the raid because you were not invited will not be tolerated.
- Being selected does not guarantee that you will be in the scheduled raid for the duration. At any time, the raid leader reserves the right to make changes to group composition. You may be asked to switch to another toon, or to sit out so that we can try a different class. If you are tired or distracted we ask that you let the leader know so that you can be replaced. Eleven other people are counting on you to do your part. Sometimes players have lag issues which prevent them from performing their assigned task in a raid. These players may also be asked to sit. If suitable replacements are not available, then the raid leader may choose to postpone the raid or to do something else instead.
- Leave your egos at the door. If something is asked of you in a Challenge or Learning run then please do it. Players who question or show disrespect to the raid leaders will likely not be invited on future Invite runs. This does not mean that our raid leaders do not want feedback, but please do it in a respectful way and remember that the raid leader has the final say.
- HPS and DPS numbers do not make a person Challenge ready. Some raid leaders may consider your HPS and DPS but there is much more to Challenge raiding than these numbers. T2 raids are twice as hard as T1, but Challenge raids are five times harder than T2. It requires coordination and focus and every player needs to bring 100% every time. If you are unable to give 100% plus then you are hurting the raid and we are essentially trying to short man the hardest content out there. You must know your character inside and out, know what every skill does, and have the experience and skill to react and not panic in a stressful situation.
- If you don’t like the way the raid leader organizes or runs a raid, then you are welcome to form your own Learning or Challenge raid. Every member of Shadow & Flame can run any raid anytime they like.