I’m in a weird place with HM right now. This server has always meant more to me than a majority of things going on in my real life and yet I can no longer find a reason to come back to it.
My time over the last six years was spent mostly in community projects, doing things that didn’t benefit me but were always beneficial to the greater HM community and the player base. I’ve built roads, tunnels, maps, guides, housing, events, and as many opportunities as I could to make this server more enjoyable for everyone. But since I was removed from staff, I have struggle to rebuild my connection to these projects that I had not to long ago.
I had always thought I’d eventually leave HM, but because of the way I was removed from staff I have been unable to find peace in moving on. Part of me just wants to forget about it all and move on with my life, but no matter where I go or what I try to move on to I never feel quite right.
For those who do not know why I was removed from staff, I had received two staff warnings within the set amount of time that would warrant dismissal. I received both of mine within ten minutes of each other, both involving my attempts to work on my recently acquired city of Port June.
Port June was a city started by a former staff member and technician Bootstoo. She had been a close friend of mine prior to her dismissal from staff. After she had been banned from the server, Port June was placed under government ownership, and had entry deny placed on it, effectively deleting it from the collective memory of the community. As I said before, Bootstoo was a close friend of mine, and the knowledge that her greatest project was going to be lost to time called me to do all that I could to get it back. So in exchange for the ownership of Port June, I was tasked with the largest world editing project in server history. A project so large and impractical that no one on staff had even tried to attempt it even collectively. I did the entire project in a year singlehandedly.
Once I had received Port June, I was then given several stipulations of the agreement (a majority of which had not been given to me when I had accepted the job a year prior), and despite these and what seemed to be a near constant reminder that I had to report everything I found that would be considered illegal, I began work on the city. It was within a month of starting this that I would receive both warnings and my ultimate dismissal.
The first one was completely legitimate. While doing some re-regioning of Port June I deleted a neighboring region prior to its owner becoming inactive. I watch a lot of Youtube, Netflix, and stuff while I play HM, so its not uncommon for me to mix around the names and numbers I’m working with because of my attention being split. This was a mistake that I deserved a warning for (even though no staff member has fixed this error as of this post despite at least six upper staff members being made aware of it).
The second one I received was entirely blown out of proportion. I was given a warning for greifing nine unlocked signs on a child region of Port June, which again, I own. To put this in a little more context, this child region is located nearly perfectly in the center of Port June. Port June is not an official city and does not have any official rules, not to mention that nearly every previous owner of child regions in Port June was banned following Bootstoo’s removal. The entire region worth aver two millions forsals had entry deny on it for over two years despite several remaining players possessions and property still being located within the city and its sub regions. The government had denied all entry to the city.
So upon being given ownership of the city, I turned off the entry deny, and went about trying to find out all child regions with active owners. Only two owners were still active at that time, with one of them being the owner of this house. A house with several signs located in front of it specifying that it was not involved with the world editing of the surrounding area, and that it was exempt from the Port June rules.
It made me sad to know that despite this player being innocent of Bootstoo’s convictions, they were still punished for them. So in hopes of welcoming the owner back to their home for the first time in presumably a year, I cleared the signs in the walkway, cleared the grass the surrounded the property, and cleaned up the plots next to it.
The owner did not see this as a nice gesture, and instead interpreted it as an act of defiance. The house in question, despite being parented to the Port June region, was not in fact part of Port June. It was there as part of a deal made by Bootstoo and the owner to allow the building to stay there while Port June expanded around it.
I was not made aware of this deal. Not after I was given the region. Not after my ownership was made public. Not after the signs had been broken. I was informed of this deal as I was being removed from staff.
Now before anyone can say that that was entirely my fault for not doing my homework after getting Port June, I want it to be known that I had done everything in my power to make this transition as smooth as possible. I communicated with all the surrounding city owners in order to prevent any possibility of conflict (Ferron Island’s HaribearGB and Lilac Bay’s MentalGamer and Zillux can attest to this fact), I had been communicating with Bootstoo prior to this event (due to her not playing HM for over a year by that point, she had completely forgotten about a majority of her unfinished business with the city), and I had become the owner of the Port June discord server with the owner of this home being someone who I had worked with several times before and had access to my discord account on 7 different discord servers. They had never contacted me once.
Upon being informed of this greifing report, I asked for the opportunity to actually talk to the owner and sort out the misunderstanding, but was told it would not change the fact that I was warned.
I asked if I could somehow have this warning nullified or in any way argued to prevent my immediate removal due to my near constant work on staff and almost universal good behavior, but was told I would not be given any form of preferential treatment.
I asked if I could see any kind of exception for this warning due to the fact that the staff team had made several errors leading to the transition of Port June to me, and was told that it was entirely on me for not going above and beyond.
Above and beyond. Something I felt that I had done nothing but strive for since I had joined the staff team.
I was given staff training a couple months prior to the introduction of several major plugin implementations and server changes, but I made it work.
In the early days of the pandemic when a majority of staff were busy dealing with real problems, I stepped up and did almost half of all staff tickets done for several months.
I had performed some of the largest infrastructure projects ever done on the server nearly singlehandedly and was ok with letting staff stiff me on the bill.
And I was the only person who thought the names who came before us were worth writing down after the forums were lost. It took hours of looking and help from the greater community, but I was able to record more history in a random discord server than all of the new forums have combined.
I have never avoided giving Hellominers and it’s community my everything. But if the only people who really knew all the work I had put into everything on their behalf were not willing to give me any form of grace when I truly needed it from them, then why should I even try? Despite my commitment. Despite my knowledge. Despite the fact that I go to school to study freaking game design. It felt like the staff team had never really respected me, and had just been using me.
That’s how I felt for months after I was removed and still how I feel today. I’m not entitled to staff giving me anything. But the fact that I could commit hundreds of hours to government projects that would regularly be forgotten, made me look back on my time on staff as nothing but a waste of my life. I cared about something that would never care about me.
So now I’m stuck. I can’t go back to HM. But it owns my heart. No matter how many new servers or games I’ve tried, nothing feels the same.
I don’t hate Hellominers. But I don’t love it the same way I did anymore. And I don’t’ know what to do with that.