Learning Everyday: the Story of a Gamer and a Community Manager

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From Gaming to Community Management - Rafael VieiraA few days ago, I was thinking on what I was going to do for this year’s Community Manager Appreciation Day (which happens to be on my birthday!), and I thought why not? I surely can’t participate in a hangout, since I don’t feel ready to jump in yet, but I’m sure I can write my story.

The beginning

Back in 2009, I had a lot of free time, so I started playing lots of browser games (curiosity: I actually had to change my e-mail, because I was receiving so much spam from different games). I was playing online games mostly due to the interaction with other players and the team spirit inherent to these games, and Tribal Wars, a well known online strategy game, was surely my favourite.

In October 2009, the Tribal Wars Portuguese Community Manager announced that he was looking for new volunteers moderators. By then, I figured I’d like to help and interact a bit more with the gaming community, so I decided to apply to join the volunteer support team. Surprise, surprise, I was accepted. I was so happy for joining the support team that I spent all my days in my laptop (I didn’t actually have any choice, because I was in quarantine at home, since back then basically anyone having a flu in Portugal would be quarantined – everyone was really afraid of the H1N1 virus).

Fast forwarding

In the Summer of 2011, I was still part of the Tribal Wars team when a new browser game was about to be launched in Portugal – SoccerStar. As a Portuguese man, football is a part of my life; I got the chance to test it before the launch of the Portuguese version and got addicted to it. Since the SoccerStar Community Manager was also the Tribal Wars CoMa, I asked him to join the SoccerStar team and that’s when I got promoted to team supervisor, not only for SoccerStar, but also for Shakes & Fidget – the Game and, later, BloodMoon. That was when I first met the whole structure behind solutions.pt.

Solutions.pt is a growing company that creates, manages, diagnoses and finds solutions for online communities.

Now

A lot has happened since 2011. Do you remember when, a few paragraphs above, I talked about when I joined the Tribal Wars team? Well, the Community Manager for Tribal Wars is also the Solutions.pt CEO, a company dedicated to managing online (gaming) communities, which I’m now part of. I’m working voluntarily as Co-Community Manager in several gaming communities in different languages and I love doing what I do. I found out that the job of a gaming community manager is much more than banning players (as I used to think before joining this world) and I’m proud to have had this opportunity.  Online games usually rely on player interaction to keep the gaming addicting and fun (as times passes, all games start getting repetitive and updates aren’t enough to keep players interested). That’s why the job of a community manager is so important in keeping the players engaged.  And although I don’t have much free time anymore, I still play some video games when I have the chance!

The future

I’m not sure what to expect from the future. I’m turning 18 on the 27th January (I bet you weren’t expecting me to be this young, were you? This means I joined the Tribal Wars team when I was 13!) and I’m hoping to study Medicine next year and, after that, Theoretical Physics, but never forgetting the community manager side of me.

There is still so much I can (and want to) learn on community management, and that’s mostly why I decided to share my story. I’m constantly reading on this subject, I watch My Community Manager Hangouts, I follow other Community Managers on Twitter and Google+, and I’m impressed by the amount of stuff there is to learn. This area is constantly evolving and it doesn’t make it easier for newcomers either. However, I’m inspired by the Socratic Method, and I always keep in mind that “I know that I know nothing”. This is my life motto and my goal is to learn more and more every day.

Rafael Vieira

Community Manager and Team Leader at solutions.pt
Rafael Vieira is a Community Manager and Team Leader for solutions.pt, a company that provides community management solutions for online gaming communities. Rafael is currently managing several different gaming communities and teams. He is also keen on Physics and Maths.

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  1. […] Community Manager story is already featured on the Community Manager Appreciation Day website (here), which is nice, and if you want to check it out, feel free to do so. However, I’m not going […]

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