I know this isn’t strictly related to development, but it’s someone’s opinion as to why despite trying to love OGS for it’s advantages, I stopped playing on it entirely.
Hi, I’m a player who’s been on OGS since… pretty much the beginning of it. Not under this account, but I make many accounts… I’ve also been playing on other servers and irl. I really wanted OGS to do well for it’s obvious advantage of being online. However, after years, I finally gave up on it since I’d still rank it one of the worst places to play go online. Here’s why:
Talking to the dev team is awful: I’ve made a few posts reporting bugs and how these bugs made me feel as a player. Each time a dev went in the conversation, I was told I should be grateful that OGS is maintained by volunteers and that I shouldn’t be complaining so much. “Thank you for reporting this! We’ll look into it when we have time (we’re just a team of volunteers)”. It’s not hard to do. At the very least, don’t attack the person that made the post!
Bugs: A logical continuation of #1. I’ve lost many games due to a timer freezing, a server out of sync making me timeout, etc.
Takes a long time to get a game going: I get that there’s a small playerbase at higher ranks on OGS. However, it’s still a valid criticism. On other servers, I see participating with leagues and other things to promote the server. The only thing I see from OGS is a correspondence game event.
Political opinions: You’re a go server. Not a political organization. I come play go to relax and think about something fun. What isn’t fun? War and politics in general. So coming to the website and seeing the politicized OGS logo… Hard pass.
Bad ranks: There seems to be an issue with the ranking system due to them not decaying and/or considering 9x9 and 13x13. But it seems like some rankings are very much out of state with the current rating of the player. Maybe it has to do with a low number of games per account… Unsure, but it needs some love.
Lack of growth: All these complains CAN be fixed. But they’ve all been a thing for so long now (we’re talking years). Some new servers came in and are simply better than OGS because they have none of these issues. Other servers also have some of these. However, they offer a choice between “convenient and unstable” or “less convenient and stable” with their client. So you can go for whichever one suits you best and keep playing on the same account.
I truly hope that OGS fixes some of these. However, for the time being, I won’t be back until at least some of these have been fixed or there’s sign of growth in the server again.
Honestly I don’t think that any server is clearly better than others. I play on several servers (mainly Fox and IGS) to get confronted with different styles. OGS doesn’t have many live games with dan players, but Fox and IGS don’t have correspondence games. The main advantage of Fox is its large player base, but the design is ugly (to my eyes) and the ranking system is not perfect either.
I don’t remember you making any such comments in recent memory (or ever, really).
I have seen a few other members of the team do, though. Things along the lines of “this is a free service, if you don’t like it you can go to a different server” (though perhaps not so harshly worded). I’ve always found that attitude to be unnecessarily defensive, as it shuts down discussion about certain aspects that could be improved.
On the other hand, some users just seem to demand for stuff without regards of the amount of work it would take, or by what means it might be done, so
I’m quite curious as to which are these new servers that @TotallyNotMe mentioned, because the only one I can think of is Fox, but that one is not really comparable. I also wonder if by beginning they meant the beginning beginning or the merge beginning
Some of the criticisms are valid, but OGS is a pretty unique platform in its online offerings, especially because of the ability to play correspondence games, the UI, overall feature set, etc.
But even aside all that, since YOU brought the political dimension into this, please do feel free to leave with godspeed. The Ukraine war is not a political opinion. Its a reality. I have taken care of a 9 year old Ukrainian girl on multiple go events, who left her home and father in Ukraine to fight in a war Putin started, while her city got bombed. Go was one of the few things she could do in my country for months to find contact to others here without speaking German or English. On tournaments I heard her cry in the next room over, thinking about her dog, her home and her friends, while her mother tried to soothe her. We have communicated with laughs, hand gestures, super simple words that we taught each other in the beginning. She is now getting better at English and German thankfully, so hopefully it will be a bit easier for her now.
The war is a crime. There is no politics to this. This is fact and Ukraine needs all the support they can get.
The only one politicizing it are the people speaking out against empathy, as you did in this very moment, when you called the tears of a 9 year old girl about losing her home and her father “politics”. I am glad there is at least one Go server showing a sliver of decency and humanity and this ALONE would be reason enough for me to support OGS.