Most of the time, when I’ve closed off a tabletop campaign, there was some epic fight or perhaps the characters in the campaigns were made kings and queens of realms. All epic fantasy tales end that way. Joseph Campbell will tell you that every hero’s journey ends this way. The monomyth is a tale of a call to adventure, epic battles, and ultimately transcendence. I believe that we have experienced the same thing here at SWTOR-RP. In 2009, Ganden, Vaanthe, and I were a part of a roleplay site for Star Wars Galaxies. Vaanthe and I moderated the site, and Ganden led a post that reported on all the latest news from Star Wars: The Old Republic. I was asked if I was going to do a roleplay site for SWTOR like the one I did for SWG, and just like the good adventurer, I refused at first. But ultimately, I answered the call, I grabbed my companions, Vaanthe and Ganden, and we took on this adventure. We had some epic battles and confrontations with demons, but ultimately, the site transcended -- it became more than the sum of its parts. And unfortunately, this is where this story ends.
At the end of this month, SWTOR-RP will be shutting down. It’s always sad to see something like this happen, and there are many reasons not to put it to rest, but ultimately, legacy won out. The site has definitely become more than what Ganden, Vaanthe, and I set out for it to be. And we know that it would not have become what it did without the amazing community that we have been a part of. Over the years, we’ve had dozens of writers giving their unique take on roleplay in SWTOR. We have had moderators who have stayed up many a late night curbing drama and comforting people going through tough times. And for every person who has worked -- and it was work, even if the pay was zero -- to make this site great, we will be forever grateful to you, and if there is ever anything that any of us can do for you, all you have to do is ask.
Of course, you have questions, and I should take some time to address them. But for those content at this point: Thank you. I have enjoyed taking this journey with you. For those who want more -- possibly less satisfying -- answers, keep reading.
Why close the doors?
There isn’t an easy answer for why we are closing the doors, but as I mentioned before, I believe the answer is legacy. I am sure we have all seen a television series that lasted more seasons than it should have. The series became a shell of what it should be, and now it’s not remembered as a great television series but rather as something that lasted far longer than it should have. That moment when it is clear that the series has extended beyond what it should have is called “jumping the shark.” This comes from an old television series called Happy Days, where one of the characters, The Fonz, literally jumped over a shark in one of the episodes of the series. It was said that is when the creators of the series were stretched beyond their creative limit. It’s possible that SWTOR-RP has already done this, but we are interested in making sure that we are remembered for the great things we have done and not stretching too thin.
Handing off the reins
Personally, I have had to play a very minor role on the site for years now because of my work, but Vaanthe and Ganden have carried that torch for me, and they have really made the site into what it is. I have stretch both of them. I have asked things of them that I would only ask of myself. And they took the challenge and excelled beyond anything that I could have hoped for. And when they both came to me and said that they wanted to move on, I did not want to cheapen or diminish what they had done by asking who they wanted to hand the reins off to.
For those who were in the thick of this game before launch, you will remember a site called Darth Hater. I liked those guys and spent a lot of time with its creators. However, there came a point shortly after launch where the crew decided to move on. It’s not important to this story why they moved on, but what happened after. At the time of the crew leaving, they were a part of the Curse network, and one person was left behind to take care of everything. There was a constant struggle for it to return to what it was. The sole remaining writer for that site would have been better served forging his own path. I do not want to see the same thing happen to anyone left behind here.
The Progenitor forums
I’m going to sidestep the obvious irony that the community called the Progenitor is the community that did not start its own thing. So I will state that I actually loved having the Progenitor roleplay community here. Over the years that we have been playing this game, this community has had some amazing discussions and thoughtful insights into the world of roleplay. However, I believe the strength of that community relies on carving its own path.
As much as I hate to admit it, this website has baggage, and if those forums were allowed to continue here, then it would carry that baggage with it. I believe it’s time to see the real strength of that community by allowing it to go free. Like I mentioned above, I would rather not strap any of the Progenitor community leaders with the expectations of those who came before.
Some necessary footnotes
First, I would like to say to all the writers and creators who have given their time and words to this site that your creations still belongs to you. None of the staff will attempt to claim it as their own, nor will we produce it someplace else without the permission of the original creator. This goes for any of the articles that appeared in our feed or forums. At the same time, I would ask that anyone who creates a new site not use any of the content here without gaining permission from the creator.
I cannot guarantee how long the content of this site will stay up other than to say, it will still be available until the end of the month. If it stays up longer than that, then it means we found a way to convert the site into something free. Although I will try my best to arrange that, do not count on it. That goes for the wiki and forums.
I cannot speak for Ganden and Vaanthe, but I will still be around on enjin and even in Star Wars: The Old Republic. I can be contacted here, and I am also on Discord as Tziena#5386. I hope to see you around, and I hope that everyone who is and has been a part of this community is better having been here. And I cannot wait for our next great adventure.