The Black Waltz Free Company is committed to providing a safe, positive gaming experience for all players and has created a list of guidelines and expectations to protect our members:
1. Respect each other and the Free Company. <<Waltz>> welcomes any and all players, regardless of skill level or background. We know that our members come from all personal backgrounds (LGBTQ+, heterosexual, pansexual, religious, etc.) and should be treated respectfully. We are a Free Company that is devoted to kindness and compassion towards all players, whether they are a member of The Black Waltz or not. Members who are purposely rude, racist, discriminatory, elitist - or who put down other members or players - are not the type of individuals we want our Free Company to be associated with. We strive to provide a safe place for all players, regardless of membership, and we want our Free Company to be recognized by the compassion of our members. Racial or slang terms that were born from malice are not welcome in any aspect of Free Company communications whether it be in game public chat, Waltz's Discord server, or otherwise. If there is an issue with a member of The Black Waltz, please refer to Section 10: "Escalations" below.
2. Keep a Positive Attitude. We know there will be times that members will be exhausted from dying, grinding, a long day at work, etc., but keeping a positive attitude and encouraging each other is key. At the end of the day, everyone is here to play a game and have fun together. Venting frustrations is perfectly acceptable once in a while; however, this game is a haven and escape for some of our members who have hectic and stressful lives. Logging in and constantly seeing negative comments or outbursts by others will detract from a player's positive gaming experience. Always remember that helping players enjoy the game is one of the focal points of our Free Company.
3. Keep Free Company communications spoiler-free. We all know that exciting feeling of playing a game for the first time. Some players like to be surprised and deserve to see things through a fresh set of eyes. There are times where you may get excited/angry from plot twists or main story content, but please refrain from spoiling it for those who are not as far as you. If you need to vent, please reach out to a member who has already been through the content and share your thoughts; many of them probably had the same reaction!
Please Note: If content information has been released by Square-Enix (i.e. patch notes), speaking about upcoming job or quality-of-life changes is perfectly fine as long as they don't reveal story content and/or fight mechanics. A good rule-of-thumb is that if Square-Enix does not officially release the information themselves (story content, fight mechanics), it's probably best to keep it out of Free Company communications.
4. Help each other. Starting a new game can be overwhelming, especially if it is a large-scale MMO with a lot of content. If someone asks for help or advice regarding job skills, actions, or general content, do your best to help them. Being overwhelmed can cause a player to have a bad experience and we must do our best to ensure that this doesn't happen. If you see a new player (“sprout” icon) who is not part of a Free Company, reach out to them and see if they need help or a home. It is important to be mindful of who you are helping and what they are asking for - we want to help others, but not give carries or handouts. For example, we do not encourage giving people Gil simply because they asked for it.
5. Keep hot topics to yourself. Please keep political, religious, or controversial topics low-key. If it's getting heated or people are uncomfortable it probably shouldn't be happening. If you really want to discuss something of this nature, do so privately.
6. Waltz is a family-friendly Free Company. In our efforts to maintain a safe environment, our Free Company has a PG-13 approach to comments and jokes and the occasional adult joke is totally fine. If the jokes or innuendos are too graphic or are about severe and inappropriate topics, share them in private with those you know personally that will take the joke as intended. Everyone comes from a different personal background filled with different personal experiences - what you may think is a simple joke might be a trigger for a negative experience in someone else's life. Generally, if it goes beyond PG-13, it's probably not appropriate for Free Company chat in any form of media.
7. Take constructive criticism and advice gracefully. Many of us are Mentors and have been playing this game for a very long time. We will always ask if you would like us to share tips on how to be effective at the job you're playing prior to giving them, and as such this is not a personal attack on your skills as a player. We want you to be the best that you can be at the job you've chosen to play. Actively seeking out feedback and advice is encouraged.
8. Agree to disagree. It’s perfectly fine to voice your opinions about something, but remember that everyone has their own. Please be mindful and respectful of each other at all times, even if you disagree. If emotions run high, it's probably best to change the topic. Refrain from insulting something, saying something is stupid or gross, or any form of baiting out fights. You may state that you personally don't like or enjoy something, and explain your reasons, but please don't trash on someone else's preferences.
9. Participate. Our community within the Free Company can only grow stronger if we are adventuring together. The Free Company puts on weekly and monthly events in which all members are encouraged to participate. If you have an event idea you'd like to do, please reach out to any Leader within the Free Company. All competitive events must be screened by Leadership prior to being formally announced to the Free Company in order to ensure they are completely fair and accessible to as many members as possible.
10: Escalations: In the event that something has occurred in Free Company chat or Discord that you find inappropriate or offensive, immediately reach out to a Leader of The Black Waltz and let them know. Ensure you capture any relevant screenshots or information pertaining to the situation so that a Leader can gain full insight if they were not online themselves. Once a Leader has accepted the complaint for review, that individual will be solely responsible for the complaint until it is resolved. Additionally, there are situations where a Leader may address a situation on-the-spot without receiving a complaint. For example, if a discriminatory or racist comment is made in Free Company Chat, it is expected that a Leader will address it immediately. If the situation is pertaining to one individual's joke or comment, they will be addressed in private. If it's pertaining to an entire conversation topic between multiple people, the Leader may issue a blanket / general statement in Free Company Chat.
11. Charter Violations: Our members’ enjoyment of this game is our topmost priority and we strive to create an environment that is warm, welcoming, helpful, and inclusive; The Black Waltz will not take violations of the above charter rules lightly. Any member who is in violation of the Charter will have their membership reviewed by The Black Waltz leadership team. In all instances, the Leadership Team will vote on all violations to determine the correct course of action. Any members who have had their membership revoked must wait a minimum of 30-days and issue a formal apology before they can reapply to the Free Company.
*Note: In all situations, Leadership will only take action if there is ample evidence or recurring behaviour that negatively affects the atmosphere of the Free Company. All complaints will be accompanied with screenshots of the Charter Violation in question and presented to the member who is at fault.
12. Open door policy. Please remember that The Black Waltz has an open door policy regarding questions, concerns, feedback, complaints, etc. If you ever have any questions about anything involving the Free Company, please reach out to Istari or any other leader. Lastly, if there is a concern with how a Free Company Leader handled a situation, any member can reach out to Istari directly.
**Every rule listed above applies to both in-game FC chats and the Free Company Discord Server (see below).