Host and Caller Roster: Introductions and Updates!

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Host and Caller Roster: Introductions and Updates!

Post by Mallory » Wed Feb 26, 2020 8:59 pm

Hey, everyone!

I wanted to take some time to catch the community up on the state of our host and caller program: who we are and what we've been doing, people coming and going, as well as taking a chance to thank everyone for what they've helped us to do. I'd also like to use this thread for future updates.

When we brought hosting to, I looked at it as an opportunity to rebuild in a way that focused on hosting's most important aspect: encouraging play. Our hosts and callers are not staff (though some happen to be!), and do not moderate the rooms, which gives them more room to focus on the play. By being a stable, consistent presence playing a role in the room, as a bartender or duel referee or entertainer, our hosts help draw other players into the room and include them in the play. Coming to a hosted shift means knowing that you will be presented with opportunities for play, even if it's an offer of a drink, a bit of local gossip, and a warning to watch your fingers around the clockwork canary.

Over the last six months we have seen incredible growth in our program and in the overall activity we're seeing in live play, and I'm so grateful to everyone who is or has been a part of the program for their role in that. This is a long list, but I'd like to go through our current line-up, as well as previous participants, and introduce my own role in the program for those who aren't familiar with it!

I've been a host here for a while now, usually as Mallory, at the Golden Perch Inn. I started doing Trivia Night events there in the summer of 2018, and I've got the witch showing up once a week to serve drinks and tell fortunes. She's usually nice to her patrons! I formally moved into the position of Roleplay Coordinator in the fall of 2018, and head up our site's host and caller program.

Yeardley joined the program as a host at the Red Dragon Inn last November, but she's been a part of our community for much longer and stinking up Mallory's shifts with her garlic bread for going on a year! She's inclusive and helpful, weaving what happens across the setting of RhyDin into her play and hooking others into ongoing stories.

Kheldar has been a regular presence in the Outback for far longer than I've been an active part of Rings of Honor /! He knows the Duel of Fists venue as well as anyone, and never hesitates to jump into the ring to help new folks learn the ropes, or put older duelists through their paces.

Casey joined our program as a host last October, taking on the Saturday late shift at the Red Dragon Inn before moving to Wednesdays, and is now on a floating schedule to host as time permits. She has a great instinct for handling crowds and including people in simple, seamless ways, and training with her was one of my favorite nights at the Perch. Hope we get an excuse to double up again sometime. =)

Pharlen joined our program as a host last October, anchoring (ha) our day play at our sci-fi setting, the Anchor. She's been a part of our community for many years, and has put together a number of wonderful events as RhyDin's elected Governor, and weaves that into her play as a host, including friends and strangers alike in her mad schemes and taking an active interest in schemes of their own!

Tippletoe joined the program initially as Michelle Montoya last spring, calling and matchmaking at the Arena and organizing events, and occasionally stepping behind the bar herself! She joined our staff last fall as the Assistant Roleplay Coordinator, and has been an enormous help to me in general and by taking on the bulk of settings work, allowing me to focus more on this program.

Majel joined us very recently, introducing herself at the Red Dragon Inn the night before her training shift with Golden Perch, and taking on Friday nights at the RDI soon after! Majel is a pro at keeping up with a busy room, not only inclusive but acknowledging and weaving in what the patrons bring into the setting on the fly. Welcome to the team!

I became familiar with the character of Conner as the caller at a rotating dueling setting known as "The Hold" a couple of years ago, but the player started calling as Eden Parker in the beginning of 2016. Conner is our Friday night host at the Red Dragon Inn, and has a great way of saying a lot in very few words, and looping newer players into the ongoing conversations and making them feel welcome.

Tenball is (so far) our only hands-free bartender! RhyDin's friendliest beholder has been a wonderful addition to our Saturday nights at the Red Dragon Inn since last October, and has a good instinct for playing off of customers' reactions to his unique form (ranging from bemusement to mortal terror) and for encouraging his patrons to come together in small ways. He's also been a consistent presence even during large events in other channels, providing a helpful alternative to players seeking something different.

Amaranthe joined our team in September, taking on Sunday nights at the Red Dragon Inn and drawing players in with a warm and welcoming atmosphere week after week. Her great attention to detail and to the other players in the room help build that wonderful atmosphere. She is on a floating schedule currently, to host as time permits. It's always a pleasure when I get to team up with her!

Lena is our newest addition, joining us just last Sunday for a new shift at the Red Dragon Inn! Observant and curious, she shows an active interest in her patrons and helps widen the conversation with her questions. As her player is the Duel of Swords Coordinator, we'll have to miss her on any Sundays during DoS tournaments, but any other evening she'll be there tending the bar!

You may know Claire as the former Duel of Magic Coordinator, but she continues to serve as a caller and has been putting together a wonderful series of events celebrating the history of the sport on Twilight Isle! Her deep knowledge and love of the sport and its setting really shows, and I look forward to what we see next from her.

That covers our current hosts and callers, but we've had some folks who've come and gone from the program as well since we became, and I wanted to take some time to highlight them, too!

Elessaria joined the hosting program here on in fall 2018 and continued through last summer, but our history goes back to when she mentored me as a host in 2006! She took back to the role with practiced ease, welcoming people to the bar with good humor and grace, building familiarity and rapport with her patrons.

Corlanthis stepped back into the role of caller, returning to the Arena couch in fall 2018, until his schedule changed that winter. He deftly balanced highlighting the action in the rings with shenanigans with the spectators, called a challenge for the Tower of Air and ran the Two-Squire Tournament before duty called him away.

Veteran caller Rory returned last fall and into last winter, taking on a magical Power Hour on Twilight Isle Tuesday nights! She crossed over with my shift as Mallory at the Golden Perch, passing through a portal into the Isle and bridging play between a dueling and a non-dueling venue. Her familiarity with the venues and the history of our community worked to include patrons and immerse them in the play.

Bailey joined us as caller Phil last spring, but later switched over to the fashionable former Archmage, covering shifts at the Annex, the Outback, and Twilight Isle until recently. His comfort both calling challenges and taking up a post at the back bar, and creating hooks for players both in and out of the duels, helped immerse them in our dueling venues.

Our Duel of Magic Coordinator Max jumped into a caller shift on the Twilight Isle last fall, bringing a little extra magic to the venue! She held court on Tuesday nights until this winter, and her enthusiastic and welcoming presence helped draw people to the Isle to fight and spectate under a starry sky.

The player of Patrick as well as Cane and others joined our hosting team last fall, with the unique hook of taking player requests for where to hold their daytime shift — and who to bring to it! Creative and flexible, the player showed both a love of settings and character details, and showed us how hosting can go beyond the bar!

Peaches joined us this winter towards the end of the IFL season. While rarely one to enter the rings herself, she still volunteered to support the duels, taking on a shift at the IFL Garden and the Annex to draw in duelists with her attention to detail and her love of the sports.

I plan to use this thread in the future for additional updates to our roster of hosts and callers — and the next time I update it, it should be a lot shorter! Once again, welcome to our new hosts and callers, and thank you to everyone in our program and everyone who’s been a part of it. Your contributions help us to sustain engaging and inclusive play in our settings and grow our community. Cheers!
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