The Player Information

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antemortem

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logo by the wonderful Blue Frog

What exactly is The Player?
The Player is a webzine just like The Smog and The Competitor, the main difference being that this project is of a slightly smaller scale than The Smog and slightly larger than The Competitor. Currently, we release 6-9 articles per issue, and we focus solely on Pokemon Showdown. It might sound like Pokemon Showdown would be a rather specific focal point, but there's a surprisingly broad range of "PS-related" stuff, so something like an introduction to IRC is fine as long as PS stuff is kept at the forefront, whereas an introduction to forum mafia or a history of SPL has no relevance to PS and wouldn't be approved. This was originally an experiment in broadening the range of media content on Smogon and bridging the gap between PS and the forum, and it has proved more successful than originally thought.

The Smog used to publish PS content, so why not just use it?
Pokemon Showdown having its own medium for media publication is far more efficient than trying to wedge PS content into The Smog. Furthermore, our writers have an opportunity to be more distinguished this way, rather than getting lost in the sea of articles that are typically published in The Smog. The Player's independence from The Smog is also bolstered by the fact we are targeting a different audience, by and large - the elusive majority of the PS demographic takes little interest in Smogon matters, but will go out of their way to read something purely PS-centric, especially if it's written by a fellow player.

What about the news sidebar?
The news sidebar on the server is still updated at its charmingly unpredictable and incongruous times, and includes updates for new releases of The Player. What's more is that a compilation of all new posts published through both the sidebar and Showdown's Facebook page are culled in an article called "Recently on PS!" in every issue of The Player so there's no chance that you miss anything.

Sounds good - how often are releases and where can I find them?
We currently set a writing and a release date a couple of days after a new issue goes live, sticking to a bi-weekly(ish) schedule. Normally the release depends on the quantity and quality of the articles, but we've got a surplus of great writers and articles alike so we normally plan for ~14-18 days proceeding the most recent release, publishing a handful of articles per issue. When new issues are published, you can find everything at http://smogon.com/player. The majority of hits come from news advertisements on PS! and social media as well as the release threads in the webzine's subforum.

Who writes these articles?
You guys! PS staff, Smogon writers, and ordinary PS users provide all of the content for this webzine. New and old writers alike, anyone interested in contributing can do so at their own pace. We encourage anyone that wants to write over anything that comes to mind to at least throw the idea at the wall and see if it sticks. You never know - what you've got might be the next best article we've seen to date!

Are there rewards for contributing?
How does the satisfaction of adding to the greatness of PS sound? Haha, well, if that doesn't sound like enough, there's some other fun stuff you can earn by helping out, too. These things include and are mostly limited to the following:

- Pre-Contributor can be earned for writing a few quality articles, providing a few quality art pieces, or lending a hand with the general utility of the project, such as through HTML. This badge is earned by those that are currently unbadged on Smogon. Therefore, if you've got a badge from a different section, your contributions to the webzine will go straight towards one of the below badges.

- Media Contributor can be earned through writing a higher number of quality articles for the webzine. Grammar-Prose team members and HTMLers can earn this badge through a high number of grammar checks and/or preparing code for a fair share of articles respectively.

- Artist can be earned through the contribution of a high number of quality art pieces to The Player. However, to earn this badge, a user must be a Smogon-approved artist, regardless of the fact that you are not required to be a Smogon-approved artist to submit artwork to The Player. In fact, creating art for The Player can be a huge step to improving one's craft to get themselves approved in the future!​

The Process
To start the article creation process, you need an idea. Check out the Article Ideas thread if you're at a loss. Afterwards, head down to Article Submissions to submit your article idea, and if it's approved it'll move to a work in progress stage in The Kiln, before being finished. After the article is written, it'll move into GP stage. All approved C&C GP team members are free to grammar check them, and we'll gladly take the help. After that, your article is good to be published in The Player!

Artwork isn't needed for all of the articles, but it's preferable to see as many articles as possible with art. Interview avatars will be needed, but other articles could have stuff drawn up. All artists are free to contribute to this. Furthermore, check out the PS Art room to clean up and improve your craft.

For writing, we give 1-2 weeks as time to write an article slated for release. It's long enough to get a high-quality article, but not to make the issue drag out. Articles aren't meant to be essays - there's nothing wrong with doing a mini-series and spreading something over multiple issues. After all of these steps are complete, the issue is posted on-site.

Who are the staff? Who's responsible for what?
antemortem - Leader, Grammar-Prose, Article Approvals, Progress Management
Spydreigon - Moderator, HTML QC, Article Approvals, Progress Management
f(x) - Moderator, Art Co-Leader, Article Approvals, Progress Management
Quarkz - Moderator, HTML QC, Article Approvals, Progress Management

Other important people?
MiniArchitect - Art Co-Leader

So, that just about wraps up The Player. If you have any questions, feel free to post in our general questions thread. We also have a PS! room with the name The Kiln. It's open to all. We hope to see you there!
 
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