Saturday, October 29, 2016

(Reference) The GamingGroundZero Games

(EDIT: A lot of the info here, is generally paraphrased from old forum threads and community sites, to just give users an idea of what GGZ was like back then - At some point I'd like rewrite this article with information from the creators themselves, if I can get in touch with them.)

Established around 2001, GamingGroundZero was one of the first western Rpgmaker communities to rise up from Don Miguels's unofficial translated version of Rpgmaker2000 - QHeretic's Kindred Saga, being one of the more prominent Rpgmaker2000 games, for creating a custom side-battle-view system in Rpgmaker2000, a year before Enterbrain would release Rpgmaker2003.

Sometime shortly after RPGMaker2003's release and RpgAdvocate unofficially translated RpgMaker2003 into English, Enterbrain pleaded with Rpgmaker fans to stop the illegal distribution of RpgMaker2000 and RpgMaker2003. They felt that the continued circulation of these programs had not only hurt their chances of releasing these Makers to the western market, but that their company would eventually go out of business if this current activity continued.

GamingGroundZero, and other RpgMaker communities, took it upon themselves to disallow any RpgMaker2003 material on their site, in hopes that Enterbrain would eventually release RpgMaker2003 in English.

Enterbrain eventually decided to release Rpgmaker XP, instead. 

(from RMN - "Oh, I'm so confused about one of GGZ's rules (which dosen't make sense.)" by alterego - June 6th, 2012)

"...GGZ never let go of [Enterbrain's] promise [to release RpgMaker2003 to the western market] and  eventually that took a toll on the community... When XP finally came out none were too impressed by it, and with no official release of rm2k3 in sight, people just started losing interest in rpg maker all together. =(

[GGZ's] "isolation" occurred in part because upon learning of this decision, people from Gaming World [another rpgmaker community,] started posting rm2k3 content, along the overall drama that ensued. And as anyone would have expected some of them got suspended or banned, but only to register again and keep challenging/questioning said decision. This was the last drop in a history of animosity between the two sites that made Wishmoo close the community and allowing inside only those willing to join in good faith. It was something that was never meant to last, but it did, and that too was part of the site's eventual downfall..."

(from RMN - "Does anyone remember GamingGroundZero?" by Kaempfer - January 31st, 2017)

"I only remember having a small number of encounters with the GGZ legends- namely Wishmoo and, once, QHeretic. I was a pretty small, inoffensive fish, and I thought I could swim around freely. I think I may have been on their IRC and then, suddenly, I was banned. Wishmoo seemed totally insane. I think someone deduced that I was from GW and that was that. I have only vague memories of these names.

I do remember they had a couple of pretty solid games that I enjoyed playing, but my enjoyment was somewhat mitigated by the extreme lengths they would go to "protect resources" (mostly minor edits of rips), including threatening legal action. I seem to remember many tales of Wishmoo threatening legal action, actually. This was a time of people going to extreme lengths to protect their mediocre palette swaps of rips, and GGZ were by far the most ill-spirited about it. It was a doubly weird time because it was well before anyone thought about actually making money from RPGMaker games.

These were legendary days where, somehow, a bunch of nerds in the internet diaspora contrived to be constantly embattled in dramatic back and forths in the arena of RPGMaker feuds rather than just being generally pleasant and thinking certain people are complete fuckwhistles like we manage nowadays.

I feel like a lot of the people from GGZ were sort of shackled to their legacy. They made some great games and wanted to continue that legacy at new sites, but their names also made people think of Wishmoo, so instead they withered away into obscurity. Like, extra obscurity, since we're all already pretty obscure.

I wonder what games could have been..."


The GamingGroundZero Games:

(I noticed a bunch of people are looking for the rpgmaker games from gaminggroundzero. 
These aren't all the games - just the ones that I was able to manage before the site was taken down.)
A Butterfly's Song - Naritus
Rpgmaker Archive Entry