The Fate of BlockHermit

On Monday, July 3, while away on vacation, the server crashed. I was notified by a player via discord. We had just gotten back from being out at the beach and I had a huge smile on my face. This was my first vacation with my fiance. While my fiance washed up, I decided to start the server back up and let it recover from its crash and check on discord while I’m at it. I went into generalchat and found there was chaos. A player who had been with us for years was unhappy with seniors. He had expectations of how they should be managed. A senior had responded and received quite a bit of heat as she was defending seniors. This crushed me. It ate me up, and to be brutally honest, I was so angry and heartbroken that I started just crying like a baby. My fiance calmed me down but my mood had irreversibly soured. I decided then that maybe this server was more harm than good. I sent my fiance to the weight room as I sat in the corner to declare the server’s end. I wanted it shut down permanently.

You see, I had started this server 4 years ago when a server called Player-craft died. I’m asocial and I have avoidant personality disorder. I have bad anxiety talking to people but I’m forever lonely being in a world where people enjoy things they like with other people. In Player-craft we had region poles and it allowed us to build together in the world without building together. I lived in an extreme hills biome and was working on buildings jutting out of the mountains. TheBlockMage and Xishwam0 were also busy at work on their own massive projects. We had maybe 5 people on at most there, but it was so much fun. When Player-craft died, I reached out to TheBlockMage and Xishwam0. We decided to start a server together essentially the same as Player-craft. BlockHermit was born on May 18, 2013.

The idea for the server was to create a community open to everyone to just come and play together. First few dozens of people we got, it was manageable. We didn’t have seniors. No one got kicked. We didn’t really have rules. But then we saw griefing and hostility between players even despite the claims system and so we had to kick and ban our first few players and establish some ground rules. TheBlockMage and Xishwam0 were never elected into seniorship. They just started off with the same thing I did. But we decided to create the idea of having seniors. We are players, but we ultimately get to choose how to moderate other players. The idea of being a senior was not to obligate people into having to help, but to give them the privilege of moderating should they so wish. We had no system of checks and balances.

The next few years, we saw seniors come and go. We never created a system of checks and balances for seniors because of what I saw them as. They’re players who have the power to help if they so wish. No obligations. I never wanted to put them in that situation where they are obligated to any task on the server. This should have been my burden at most to bear. The seniors were also hidden. We never publicly announced who was a senior. This was set in place so they could do their playing at leisure. It’s hard to say ‘no’ to a player, even if you’re not obligated to help them. Players found out who seniors were as ‘help me’ requests got answered by them. This forced Cob to stop playing and become an invisible senior. Others left.

As our playerbase grew, I had to slowly install a system to help seniors not get bogged down by requests. A few times over the years, myself and other seniors were told we SHOULD and we HAVE TO help players. No, I stood by my thoughts back then and still stand by it now, I don’t want to obligate seniors to do anything. They are players not because they should be seen as players but because they declare themselves to be one. Players never had any power in defining what a senior is and what their duties are. This was and still is a hobby server. One run out of pocket. It’s not a business. And quite frankly, I never had the interest back then, nor do I even now have an interest in seeing the server grow that much. I was happy with five players when we started and I wouldn’t have felt a loss if it stayed five even now.

I want to add that part of the reason we never went whitelist for this server is because people who are like me, asocial and avoidant, won’t apply to things. BlockHermit makes it very easy to get on the server and play without having to interact with people. Maybe one day when the player so chooses, they can speak up in chat. Likewise, I see a lot of servers turn down applications especially for children. This server has seen many parent-child duos play. And I love seeing them. I love being able to provide an environment where a parent and child can play without feeling nervous about exposure to foul language and adult themes.

When I declared the server would be shut down, many people spoke up in support of keeping it alive. I was honestly touched and surprised by this. I don’t want to shut down the server, I just need to keep my sanity. I already trigger my anxiety every day responding to issues and requests for the server so that others don’t have to. I don’t care about the cost of the server, I care about our players’ well-being. So to find a good balance between the two, I proposed that the players take the issue into their hands. How can we fix the server so that seniors are respected? How can we improve so that people are not stressed out? I gave it a week from the Monday July 3rd. We have 3 days to figure this out.

This post was made in hopes that maybe you will see where I stand, how this server was envisioned, and what we are up against. I want this server to be all of ours, not just mine.

11 Responses to “The Fate of BlockHermit”

  1. SlimeBoyGamer55

    I know im banned, but i would love to come back and see blockhermit for one good time before it shuts down. Will there be a world download ?

    Reply
  2. LayaElisabeth

    “do you even minecraft, bro?” is 1 of the thing i used to hear very frequently. BH is focused on being survival as much as can be, and lots of players just don’t survival.

    I’ve noticed a few players just starting out begging, who never stop. Somehow i feel that instead of being too lenient, we have to be more strict. Let there be no room for nonsense, cause at the moment we allow players who’ve been kicked and even banned to just roam once again, until yet again players start complaining about griefing. This only allows for some players to see how far they can go until we’re ‘for real’. oh, wait. most of them just appeal and get back in anyways.

    This gets me to my next point. I feel that a few players just don’t take us seriously, which is enough to cause troubles like; lack of respect in general, publicly going against seniors, getting other players to act out, annoy players who just don’t wanna be in all this drama.

    Some players don’t have chat on, or just don’t pay attention cause they’re too busy. Warning them personally, or using BH broadcast is just wasted time. If we can kick, we’ll break their concentration and have the warning in there. This will also prevent players lying that they “didn’t see the warning”.

    See, back when lordy was still playing, people sometimes complained about him. but players also knew he didn’t take kindly to bs. I wanna refrain from saying that some people were scared of him, but we knew not to try ‘funny’ things. Lordy also didn’t play anymore as to being a fulltime authority senior, but i feel like somehow we really need to be more strict. NOT CRUEL! but strict.
    after all, if you steal in real life, or damage someone else’s house or fly without permit, you won’t get 3 warnings and 3 kicks before you get punished.

    Also worth mentioning. 2 kicks with warning and after that straight to Ban (with x-raying, griefing) also reduces the workload for seniors. It’ll allow us to deal with toxic players of whom we know WILL do wrong again at some point.
    Now we have to keep following following and warn, then kick untill the point were we can finally ban them. And sometimes that takes a while because they know they’re being watched which takes time from us to play when you add requests and complaints.

    Reply
  3. xXCookiedCreamXx

    I have been on the server for over two years now and it is the one reason to why I play Minecraft anymore.

    Hearing about all this aggression and hate towards Seniors makes me lose faith in the players on the server. The Seniors spend hours of their time helping out players and resolving situations, for nothing. No pay, nothing.

    Although all this happens, I feel that by making some changes, the server can manage to get back to what it used to be. A calm and friendly environment for everyone to play in, it just takes the players and Seniors to work together to solve the issues the server has.

    Do not give up hope, do not destroy the creation Haydn has made. Come together and rebuild BlockHermit back to its former glory!

    Reply
  4. Blueleft

    I believe the solution to having players respectin seniors is by removin the seniors bound with “seniors are regular player too” i know it might the oppisite of what u originaly desired the server to be. Having seniors as “regular players” make them seem easy to mess with.
    I believe a little rankin system may help solve the disrespectful behavior.

    Reply
  5. BRADY1190

    So i am a new player but I love this server. I am suggesting we players start helping new players. I personally do my best to host as many as I can in my community region, accrington. I do my best to help them grow in the server and become better players. I suggest everyone has to host an amount of players in his region. So he is obliged to help them grow. Moreover we should fix several issues about spawn and such stuff. Spawn must include each and every single information about plugins and server’s rules. Players must be in charge to help newcomers. Also we have to remake spawn so that all players read all of the rules. A suggestion is to make it like a large path and have the region pole at the end of the path. So no player can leave without reading the rules. Plus just to take it a step further make quiz in the end of each path so the players have to fulfill it correctly to go through. I know it sounds kinda bizzare but I think this is gonna be the best solution. Furthermore seniors must become stricter and stop any disagreements that exist. Currently some players(including me) are arguing on an issue. You have to do something to stop this. Otherwise we players have hatress one another. With some of the players I was arguing we are now okay. But with some others we haven’t spoken yet. In other words seniors must reply more frequently on forums, especially when arguing is apt to happen.

    Reply
  6. unanimous user

    i am writing this unanimously, not out of secrecy but because i believe i speak for the players like me, who have made mistakes, and have been forgiven, as well as those whom i speak of.
    what you seem not to realise is that although the server has its… unsavory personalities, it also has its greats, people who define what it is to be a “blockhermit” , people who are constantly online working on their own massive builds, creating , living with , speaking to the other members, and i feel that by ending this server, you not only eradicate the toxic personalities, but also those who have worked hard, spent hours upon hours making, building, crafting, putting blood sweat and tears into each and every thing they do. and although some have made mistakes, the real question is, can you be human enough to forgive them, and and are they willing to see who they should change themselves to be, how they can learn to live in a peacfull, kind, understanding way. And even when those who will be constantly toxic, never seeing their errors, come , we can always kick them, and but they will always come, because there are people who are naturally like that, and so we have to deal with them strictly, or else they will not understand the errors in their ways, and so will be unprepared for a real world that oneday or another they will need to be prepared for.

    overall i feel that there are the hardworking, kind ,and human people on this server, who cannot come to grasp why the server should shut down, because they’re wonderful people, always charitable, ever ambitious and whole-heartedly one with the server, because of the hours they have donated, spent working and chatting on the server.
    so the only thing i can ask of you is to please, please give us another chance, let us prove that , although we have our moments, inside we are all good people and all would appreciate it if you rethought your above statement

    Reply
  7. api3

    Dear Hayan,

    Thank you for making BH, and for you, all the seniors, and other players making it so fun for me!!! 🙂

    My life has been so full of hurt and betrayals, minecraft and BlockHermit has been such a great escape. Being in survival mode adds tension and excitement, sometimes frustrations. All easy to deal with and in the end fun. Without even talking to anybody 🙂
    People on BH have been great and having friends share and build things makes it so much nicer. For me playing is always fun and it doesn’t make my real life any worse.
    I’m really sorry it has been hard on you and the seniors!! Its terrible that you end up feeling angry and heartbroken after putting in your free time for some fun.

    One solution might be to not have the seniors do as much.
    Death and loss of items in minecraft happens…maybe nothing ever gets replaced.
    Also might be able to let players ban each other, maybe based on how long they have played. A more automated banning system might deal with the complaining better. Currently being strict while not cruel does feel that way. Many times a banned player will cur and complain and swear and yell making a toxic mess for everybody….

    You have my thanks and support for any decision you make.
    Thank you and all the seniors for many many hours of fun and relaxation(with the constant fear of death!).

    With love!
    api3

    Reply
  8. Murkshad3

    well I just know I like playing on this server a lot as does my girlfriend. I would really hate to see it go because I have put in a lot of hours into building. Ive enjoyed my time on BH and have met some really cool people on here. Just know what ever you decide I respect that and its your own decision to make but what ever way you decide; whether you shut it down or keep it running its going to impact peoples lives. Also by keeping it running there are other ways to keep it manageable. I also get that when there is an argument its hard to tell which side to take on a moral stand point or who did wrong. If I come up with any ideas ill be sure to share hayan.

    One last thing from all the true hermits we are truly grateful for what you have given us and would like to thank you. >.<

    Reply
  9. Ragtagdb97

    Pls do what you want but personally I love the server and would like it if at least you keep it up if not it’s ok but I LOVE the server 🙂

    Reply
  10. abdullahajk

    I have read the whole entire post and i totally agree with Hayan, that players should not disrespect or misbehave or tell a senior how to behave like a seniors.

    If i actually act like a judge i would recommend that if and only if a senior says something foul or does something to you even if you have not done anything then it would be wiser for you to just ask them privately so that if and only if the senior is wrong at that point you may not disrespect them in front of everyone which would make them more angry on you as such violating(something against you) against you .

    Now that i have talked about seniors let me tell you that when i started up as a normal person having nothing but 2 books and some apples i also was not helped like as such some players do by giving new people 10k Rhines. I was not one of those people. When i bought Minecraft i was really happy and as i was scrolling through the server lists on a web page i saw BlockHermit and i joined that server and i was really happy that i found a semi vanilla server.but after i played for a week i gradually saw some people griefing as they were innocent. After some time when i could stood p to my feet and could call myself a normal Hermit (having everything needed) i helped everyone that i could, usually by Rhines because my laptop was really laggy, but til now i have managed to have almost 300k and i am proud of it and i really want everyone to just start like this because i can promise you if you beg you will always have a feeling that the stuff you got by the stuff you begged for is not yours because you indirectly begged for it, i know i can tell by many OTHER kind of experiences.

    So i just wanna say Please if you have any problem please report it at the forums i know it could be hard with a bad internet but trust me it hurts the seniors more then it hurts you.

    Reply

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