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ZetaBoards will be no more, what do we want to do?
Topic Started: May 8 2018, 11:08 PM (400 Views)
vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

You may or may no remember, but at one point this board was an InvisionFree board. When ZetaBoards was announced (by the same people that ran IF), we chose to upgrade to the new software as we liked it a lot better. That was in 2008 that we upgraded. And we've been fine since.

Last summer, all IF boards were being forced to upgrade to either ZetaBoards or to TapaTalk as that old software was being phased out. We were assured nothing was going to happen to ZetaBoards since it was either ZB or TT now.

Well, such is not the case as I got a blindsiding gut punch message from the support forum last night. I clicked on it and this is what it said:

Quote:
 
ZetaBoards has been working with Tapatalk to create a free forum hosting platform that is a worthy upgrade for ZetaBoards.

As a result, ZetaBoards will begin an upgrade process to move all of its communities to Tapatalkís platform.

Some of the benefits of the new platform include:
- Revenue Sharing of advertising revenue
- Full mobile support including native iOS/Android App, a responsive mobile theme as well as AMP support out of the box.
- The option to accept donations for your forum
- The option to Premium memberships to access designated forums
- Single Sign-on support for multi forums.
- Robust GDPR support for European Union visitors.
- Enhanced spam detection and removal.

We have been working on a major series of updates to ZetaBoards. These upgrades will now be happening on the Tapatalk forum platform. The development resources that Tapatalk can provide to the platform means more feature updates, more feature testing, and more frequent updates. And we will be adding some ZetaBoards features and functionality to Tapatalk in the coming weeks.

We want the upgrade to be as smooth as possible for all ZetaBoards' communities. If you have a specific concern or question we would be happy to answer it.

Live previews of ZetaBoards forumsí on Tapatalkís platform will be made available soon for testing the migration process.

-Brandon Kopetzky

We will now be forced to a new forum software, that at the moment, has way less features than what we have now. They don't even support themes or codes so we could lose a lot. It doesn't support the website feature, blogs, any of that. Hell, they even charge you just to use a custom domain (apparently $10 a month), like the one we have. So on top of paying for the domain, I'd have to pay to use it now. Ugh.

Now, you may or may not know this either...but Brandon is a super unreliable human being with piss poor communication skills. How many big updates to this forum software have we gotten since we started using it? Maybe one or two. But for the most part, those updates were never anything we used in the first place. The lack of updates never really bothered me much since we were content with what we had. We're not exactly rolling with activity anymore. But... That's not the point. It's the fact that as forum owners under ZB, we were promised the moon and all we ever got was a rock.

We were flat out lied to.

According to some threads on the support forum, even the staff were blindsided by the announcement and some of them have been very vocal in their disappointment and fury. Some are even going to abandon their own owned forums.

Brandon is apparently again promising us the moon in the transition from ZB to TT but I'm not sure what to do. I'm not sure what to believe. I'm infuriated by it. I've spent money for ad removal to help support ZB. If we were more active, I would have bought ZB Premium but it's a good thing I didn't, I guess. He's apparently promising that themes and codes will be features made priority to the transition but man, I just don't know.

So what do we do? Do we wait it out and see if we get more info? There's no timeline as to when this will happen, and if Brandon holds true to past form, it'll be a while. Do we copy what we can and move to a different forum software like ProBoards or something else? Or do we just shutter the site completely? I don't know what to do and I'm so annoyed by this that at the current moment, my heart is telling me it's time to let KotW die. I even recently was considering starting a new forum for discussion beyond KD but I got discouraged and never did it, probably for the better anyways. I'm really at a loss at the moment. All the years I've spent and we've spent together building up this place. Maybe if the community was more active beyond voting in CotW each week, I'd be more inclined at wanting to save this place but I don't know. I want to keep it going and I don't now. I don't want to support TT but do I and we want to start over? Do we even want to continue? I really and very truly at a loss at the moment. I feel like over a decade's worth of work is going to be destroyed and my heart isn't in it.

So what's next for KotW?
Edited by vix, May 8 2018, 11:20 PM.
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Katach314
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It's funny because sadness
I want this forum to go on somehow. I know way less about websites than you, but I DO know that KotW is the only thing I can find that could provide me with more katamari in some way at all. Even when it's just shooting the shooting the breeze with you guys or posting stories no-one reads, it still keeps some hope in me that someday, something will happen. Katamari has been with me for as long as I can remember, and now KotW is my last hope.

I'm not ready for it to go.
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

I'm depressed at the moment. It's still early days, who knows what Brandon will pull out of his arse. But I'm depressed about this.

Edit a little while later: I made this though just now:

Spoiler: click to toggle


How I feel after making that: :lol :crybaby
Edited by vix, May 9 2018, 12:51 PM.
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marbig
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Shigeru Matsuzaki

Oh man that's frustrating. I can see it now... The board is finished and then a new Katamari game is announced. Okay probably not but it's pretty lame.

That said, we have like what, five active members? If that?
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slowbro
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way too silly :S

Wow :cold ... I sure wouldnít want to lose this board, itís my #1 place to hang out on the web. But vix has dedicated a lot of time to this place, and if this situation is finally the breaking point, maybe itís time for her to leave this site behind. I hope not.

ProBoards or Tapatalk or whatever else, I think Iíd likely be willing to put up with whatever host we get, even if there are more ads. I donít think it is essential to keep the domain (ouch, $10 a month to use a domain seems nuts).
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

Quote:
 
Oh man that's frustrating. I can see it now... The board is finished and then a new Katamari game is announced. Okay probably not but it's pretty lame.

Yeah, I had that thought too. Maybe we should use reverse psychology and say we're going away forever so that we can get a new game. :lol

Quote:
 
That said, we have like what, five active members? If that?

4 members have posted in the last 7 days.
11 members have been online in the last 7 days.

8 members have posted in the last 30 days.
20 members have been online in the last 30 days.

So yeah, it is depressing stats for sure. That's why I'm not sure it makes it worth it to continue but at the same time, this board has been in my life for almost 15 years now. Ups/downs and activity/tumbleweeds.

Quote:
 
ProBoards or Tapatalk or whatever else, I think Iíd likely be willing to put up with whatever host we get, even if there are more ads. I donít think it is essential to keep the domain (ouch, $10 a month to use a domain seems nuts).

I could probably get around the domain thing as right now our domain only links to the board, like a redirect. So I might still be able to use it if and when the time comes.

A lot of people on the support forum feel betrayed and lied to, I know I do.

I thought about sending out a mass email but then I realized I don't want the opinions of people who haven't been here in years. I want the opinions of the people here Now. Opinions of the people who still care about KotW.

I found what I think might be a suitable replacement but we would be starting over. Accounts would have to be remade, everything would have to be remade. Everything.

Do we wait it out and see what Brandon has in store for us? Or do we slowly transfer all the important stuff to a new board and attempt to start over?

Either way it goes though, I'm going to slowly start making backups of the database (omg, that's gonna be insane to do), make backups of the themes, the webpages. I have the scoreboards already. And whatever else I can back up.
Edited by vix, May 9 2018, 01:08 PM.
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Katach314
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It's funny because sadness
Is there some way to archive the threads? I'm not sure I want to lose Katamari Rolls On and TCCaC. Besides that, is there any way myself and/or others can help preserve parts of the site? (You probably already have them, but I have saved all our emoticons on my computer, cousin :prince or otherwise :poke ).
vix
 
A lot of people on the support forum feel betrayed and lied to, I know I do.
Posted Image Attention, people of Katamari On The Web! You have been cheated and lied to!

:princess I knew it! [She slaps Katach]
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slowbro
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way too silly :S

Maybe we can try to keep our options open? Like maybe we can archive stuff and work on copying things to a new forum, but still keep our eyes on Tapatalk in case they do work in features we like.

But if weíd rather just work on moving to the host vix found, Iím sure fine with that too. It may be for the best.
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

I think that's a good idea. After dwelling on it more. Yeah, I agree with that. Save everything we can that's important, just in case. And then wait and see what happens.
May 10th...

I think this a good read if you guys want to see just how badly the staff of ZB were blindsided:

http://support.zathyus.com/blog/entry/959/4064/
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crealol2
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The guy who does katamaris over there.
Honestly, I'm just getting confused with all this stuff about domains and ads and all that. But honestly, even if the site is archived, losing this forum is a huge issue for the few who use this site.

seriously not even flex tape or that black hole clogging katamari from '07 can fix this crap
Edited by crealol2, May 11 2018, 08:18 PM.
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slowbro
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way too silly :S

Iím pretty sure vix still plans to run KotW somewhere. :D I think weíll still have forums to post in and stuff, but we may need to archive things like the Katamari Database to move it from one place to another. Our address probably wonít start with s9.zetaboards anymore.

I bow out of the stuff between Brandon and the staff and the board owners. It sounds like he led them on then changed his mind. He was probably trying his best I suppose.
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

After a few days of "whatever..." towards all of this, I think I might have a sort of plan.

I want to keep KotW going...somewhere. I just don't know where that will be yet. There are a lot of pros/cons to staying here at "ZetaTalk" or to moving somewhere else.

So for the time being, I'm still going to be backing up whatever I can as best I can. Right now, Tom is helping with backing up the video database. The main database will take some time and patience to get fully backed up. I'm going to back up what I can from the ACP like themes and codes.

I've set up a new board on two different services. I'm going to mess around with them and see which one is best for what we do and use.

I'm also going to wait out and see what happens with this "ZetaTalk" hybrid we're being promised. Who knows, maybe it won't be awful... But at the same time I want to be prepared for a migration elsewhere if need be.
May 16th...

Brandon has still not addressed any of our concerns and I'm worried about this. This has been stressing me out probably more than it should but yeah. My faith in anything he comes up with slides down the scale the longer it takes for him to even bother to address our concerns.

There are pros and cons to both moving and staying. The support staff at ZB are mostly all abandoning it and moving their forums elsewhere. That says a lot about how they feel and how they're being treated too.

So far, 4 people have posted here. I'm still refraining from sending out a mass email because I want the opinions of people here now. If we move, I'll send that out later on.

If we end up moving, we need to figure out what we want to keep (and try to keep) and what we want to leave behind. What topics do we want to remake? Etc.

Topics Off the Top of My Head:
What are you currently playing?
What did you do today?
What have you just bought?
What are you currently listening to?
The Weather Thread.

Question to Pose: Will CotW start over with a new condo and archive the old one? Or will it continue where we left off?

What themes am I going to attempt to remake because I'm not going to do them all. I'm going to do the retro one. I'll do Kyun since that's the one I use. But the rest are dead (for now, or forever, who really knows at this point) unless someone calls for one of them to be remade.

Profile Fields:
Currently playing
Fav cousin 1, 2, and 3
Fav game (I personally don't care about bringing along the ones we own field, seems silly to me now)
Various online id fields for gaming (psn, xbox, nintendo, steam)
Gender
Facebook/reddit/imgur/tumblr/twitter/youtube

Create legacy accounts? Those that want their account to be the same can have their post count transferred over? Create a new member group for those that transfer over from the beginning? Do I preregister accounts to avoid fakes? Do we need to carry over the missing in cosmos and lost in cosmos member groups? What about making it possible for everyone to rank up to cousin but still have the other type of cousin, maybe have a bolded member name?

Do I carry over the NPC accounts even through they are dead?

User Ranks? Do people even care about user ranks since that can be changed after a few posts are made?

Smilies:
The cousin smilies are coming, of course. But what about all the other smilies? How many of them do we actually use? We could probably trim them down.

Bring over Wattam and Noby?

Bring over the curator's dead corner?

What else? That's all I got for now.
Edited by vix, May 17 2018, 01:01 AM.
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slowbro
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way too silly :S

:doh If so much of the staff has jumped ship, and thereís no word at all on addressing anybodyís concerns yet, itís sounding like it may be a good thing weíve begun getting things ready to move.

Totally honestly, Iíd be okay with starting over pretty much everything except the database, the smilies and the CotW (I would prefer to keep our decade plus of Cousin contests, heh). It would be kinda neat to start over with post #1, and have no special rank besides just ordinary newbie member. Since I donít think there is much opportunity for new members to achieve Cousin rank anymore (maybe Iím wrong about that) maybe we shouldnít implement anything like that.

This is only one Pokemonís opinion though. If we lose our old discussions and ranks that might discourage members from visiting and staying, maybe.
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

Yeah, it's frenzy of pissed off people going not holding their tongues and saying they're going elsewhere, like to Jcink or IcyBoards. Pretty much all of the support staff have said they're going to resign once the switch happens.

Tapatalk charges you 10 bucks for a support ticket, 5 bucks to use a custom favicon, 10 bucks to use a custom domain. People are starting to wonder if they're gonna charge us to use our skins/themes when (and if) they get transferred. Or pay monthly for a premium account. Which I just honestly cannot justify given the current state of the board.

So I have a feeling we're going to be jumping ship sadly.

I've already started up a new forum. I spent hours last night starting the setup. Man, I don't remember it being this complicated to do all this stuff all these years ago...but I guess in part it was due to the fact I was younger and jobless and had tons of time to waste on set up and configuration. I got as far as setting up all of the database forums and the news section.

I think what I'm going to do about the Cousin rank is just make it a rank that you can get to via post count. We have no activity to justify a "special assistant to the board" rank anymore. Though I would like to give those that follow me over to a new board a special status, like "Legacy Cousin" or something like that.

Does anyone think it's worth it to start setting up the new board, as in start reposting the database topics, stuff like that? Right now, the board is set to no new registrations because I want the current users a chance to get their usernames, etc. If anyone thinks it worth going gung ho at this and wants to help, I can preregister you an account. A lot of new formatting will have to be done for the topics to transfer over, like the table codes are different, etc. Discuss here and/or PM me. The board is bare bones at the moment, I have don't the skin yet or banners or anything.

As far as cousin of the week goes, what do you want archived? Each main post? The entire topic? There's a plug in for firefox that lets me take a screen shot of an entire webpage. I could in theory archive it that way but then where do I host the images that are reliable? Do I copy the first post of each post? Ugh, the thought of it in any way it's decided will be one hell of a to-do. And one of the HUGE downsides to the new forum I chose is there's no ability to do a multi-vote poll. Ugh. If I go with the other software there is, but I'm not sure I like it as much.

Another thing that gets me is all the help topics made that have made it so much easier over the years to help out users. We won't have that on a new forum. In fact, all the game forums will likely be empty with no topics for a very long time. All that's useful will be the database unless someone volunteers to comb them for useful posts. Ugh again.

This is miserable on so many levels. I really cannot explain just how much this is stressing me out.

Edit: After finding out about the one vote only option, I didn't get anything done tonight. I'm so meh about this all. One service feels just like old school InvisionFree which I'm familiar with and know how to work for the most part and I think is the closest to what we have no. The other has lots of really cool features but for some reason, it feels like...it doesn't feel like home. Dammit.
May 19th...

Another update...

So apparently TapaTalk can, at any given moment without any reason, delete stuff from your board if they don't like it. So that's another nail in the coffin. Their support forum is deleting ZB members questions and concerns. Another nail.

With the help of another frustrated ZB member, we made a topic on the other forum's support forum about multi-vote and oddly enough, the owner/admin/developer replied to it in less than a day. Imagine that, an admin who actually posts on his site's support forum. Screw you Brandon, seriously. Anyways... He said multi vote is in beta and that he'd activate on my board. So that's a big yay, I think. And in the process of doing a bunch of things at once, it's been activated and it works like a charm so CotW is saved from a horrific death by Brandon.

So anyways, the lack of response here has been disheartening as well to say the least. So, the few people here, is it time to send out a mass email about this?
Edited by vix, May 18 2018, 01:54 AM.
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Katach314
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It's funny because sadness
I vote "why not?" on the mass email thing. Worst case scenario, everyone you message is briefly inconvenienced. Best case, we get lots of help moving and maybe a brief resurgence in popularity.

I also vote you carry over the Kuro theme. Other good carry-over candidates would be the Ichigo, June, and Mu themes (also good, but less important: Shikao, Mag, KotW Retro (Original)). And how does one back up a theme? Is there a spritesheet or something?

By the way, do we have any sort of time frame for when ZetaBoards will shut down?
Edited by Katach314, May 19 2018, 05:02 PM.
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

I have to remake the themes from scratch individually and reupload/remake all of the images for the themes as well. Which is why I don't want to carry them all over at once. It'll be a huge thing to remake them if no one is going to use them. I only want to carry over the ones being used.

As far as the timeline to when we'll be forced into conversion, Brandon isn't a reliable human being so it could happen tomorrow or it could happen next next. I haven't a clue. I've been keeping tabs on the support forum to see what's happening so as soon as I know something, you guys will know something.
Edit: I'll send out a mass e-mail soon. Gonna wait and see if anyone posts anymore opinions...

Also, it seems you might not be able to have custom smilies on tapatalk so there go all the cousins if true. Not 100% confirmed yet.

If anyone wants to see what a tapatalk board looks like, here's their support forum: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/tapatalksupport/index.php

Here's another one I found: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/thefall/

And another: http://urbanglasgow.co.uk/
Another Edit: For any active members here now, do you want your account preregistered on the new forum in case we do end up jumping ship? If you do, PM me with what e-mail addy you want the account made under because I'll make a temporary password for you but then you need a valid e-mail to change it (out of security). I'd like to preregister you guys before I preregister the cousins/npc's.

If you do this, you could also check out the forum as I'm slowly building it and maybe even offer insight. :lol You'll also get "prestigious" member numbers. :heh
Edited by vix, May 19 2018, 11:35 PM.
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slowbro
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way too silly :S

:wacko it sounds like it wouldnít be a good idea to stay with Tapatalk. Egad, the board itself is deleting posts about peopleís concerns over a forced changeover. :cold

For CotW I really only meant it would be great to keep the vote totals. I donít think we have to archive every post ... which I donít enjoy saying, since people post awesome stuff there.

I really appreciate that despite the disappointments, you still plan to keep our board going somewhere. I know for sure at least you and Katach and I still care about KotW.
And marbig and crealol2. :thumbsup Sorry I missed you.
Edited by slowbro, May 20 2018, 12:26 PM.
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

Supposedly they also only allow each member to have one account....so that kind of screws us over, or me anyways, in that I have at least 2. I have tons of others that were made years ago when spammers would make rude usernames and I didn't want that staying on the index. :lol And some others I used to ninja post with. :shifty :P

Oh yeah, they also have an inactivity policy, where if the forum isn't active enough, like no posts in X days, they can get rid of it without warning too. Which makes my strike through sentence below pointless. Because if we move and we stop posting here, it could go away forever.

The more comes out, the more I hate the idea of losing everything that makes this site, this site. So a move seems like the best idea but man, starting over will be rough when we're pretty much DOA as it is. Is it worth it?

Maybe when I send out the mass e-mail, I'll get a little more insight.

Hopefully this place stays intact enough to still support google searches for items and what not.

I'm still not sure what I'm gonna do with CotW, that's a huge undertaking to back up.

I think though I'm going to take a break tonight from building the new board. Spending all night Friday and Saturday doing it, need a break.
Edited by vix, May 20 2018, 09:38 PM.
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slowbro
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way too silly :S

Woops, I just realized I still misspoke about CotW :lol ... I meant the win totals (not every weekís vote totals), each Cousinís floor of the condo, was all I thought it would be great to keep.

:eek It seems like every possible nightmarish scenario for a message board is happening. I sure hope KotW continues, but you know, if it doesnít life goes on.
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

Oh, yeah, the condo will at the very least continue. I just don't know if I have it in me to somehow archive all of CotW and transfer it to the new board.

I'm trying my damnedest to continue it in some form. The question that lingers in the back of my head is: will it be worth all the work?

I'm a bit disheartened at the moment but I'm forging through the set up slowly but surely.

Edit: I realize I've endlessly flip-flopped my feelings and what I want to do in this thread. It's just hard to figure out. It's hard to fathom loosing this place even if the dust and tumbleweeds are more abundant than users. But that thought makes it hard to want to start over. Katamari is all but dead. I think that fact the last two releases have been mobile games, a clicker and an endless runner, just feels like the final nail in the series. Maybe e3 this year can prove me wrong but I doubt it. I'd love to be wrong though!

I think will post this topic to twitter before I send out the mass e-mail. The offer still stands for first access to the new set up to test it out with me to those that have been on recently. I've kept track of who those members are if any of you still want in. The offer will stay open until I send out the mass e-mail, which I guess will be in a few days to a week maybe? Depends.

I think what it will be is those here now get first access, then I'll preregister the cousins like I had mentioned before, then any twitter folk, then any e-mail folk. Sound fair?

I really just need more input at this point. I'm having a hard time figuring this out on my own. So off to twitter to see if I get some feedback.
Edited by vix, May 21 2018, 12:04 AM.
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marbig
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Shigeru Matsuzaki

I'm down for preregistration. Beyond wanting the forum to live on in some form, I don't have a huge amount of input. I missed a lot of the cool other bits you folks got up to over the years,
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

Maybe it's time we make new memories then, yeah?

If NeoGaf can have a full on implosion and have a mass exodus of members to a new site, ResetEra, why can't we? :lol

Edit: As far as out normal smilies go, are we taking them all? I had always wanted to make them more katamari-like but my smilie making skills are limited.
Edited by vix, May 21 2018, 11:33 PM.
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retroblast
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katamari lives!
Just want you all to know I'm still visiting the forum even though there has been a lack of posts from me :)
About this whole "forum closing down thing" I'm not entirely sure what to do. But, I'd still be happy to early-register for the conceived "next forum" :)
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marbig
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Shigeru Matsuzaki

Let's just become a Wattam forum?

The smilies are so retro and I kind of love it, haha. :flirt
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vix
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Run you clever boy and remember...

:lol then I think we'd be even more dead than we already! :heh
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