Fate of Io is...
The Fate of Io Project is an experiment.
Fate of Io may seem deceptively serious about becoming an underdog blockbuster, but do not let that expectation fool you. At its conception, the project was little more than a whim, and since then it has developed into a full-force online endeavor. But at the core there remains a care-free attitude, explorative spirit, and inquisitive approach to this growing development project.
Unlike most independent game projects, Fate of Io does not measure its success in terms of how well or even whether or not the goal of creating an RPG is accomplished. Instead, the true focus is on the people who involve themselves; their skills and talents are given room to grow within the project, with support and appraisal from others who are, like them, also developing their own abilities.
This core philosophy does not preclude the project building up into a real RPG video game, and that would be a very exciting result of this experiment. Remember, though, that the game-creation aspect exists to provide an aim for the work of contributors. It gives us a context in which to practice what we enjoy doing, and to apply those skills to a real instance of teamwork and construction.
The Fate of Io Project is open.
So how does one go about joining the Fate of Io Project? Simple: If, after reading this charter, you understand and agree with all the major points, consider yourself in. If you understand and don't agree, that's fine too. You are welcome to stay as long as you respectfully follow the rules, though consider that perhaps Fate of Io simply isn't the thing for you, and that's okay!
The bottom line is that you get to decide when to come and go. When I say that the project is "open," I mean that just about anyone is welcome to participate. It isn't impossible to be denied access to the Project (and we reserve that right), but you would need to disregard our policies consistently and in a major way to do so.
More specifically, Fate of Io is open to your contributions, which form the lifeblood of the project. Contributions may take any form; you may submit drawn artwork that you've scanned, a piece of music you've created, or ideas regarding a gameplay system. Don't be afraid if you don't think you're a creative genius; your "mere" opinion can be incredibly valuable when we're deciding on the best route to take.
Be aware that by contributing to the Fate of Io Project, you automatically agree to a few important details. First, while you legally maintain rights to your work, you permit the Project to use (e.g. display, modify, and redistribute) the materials and/or ideas you submit. Second, because Fate of Io is non-profit and has no budget, there is no form of compensation in the traditional sense. While we will try our best to give due credit if we use a contribution, the main benefit is meant to be the experience you get through working on something you enjoy doing.
The Fate of Io Project is a community.
The personal aspect of the project cannot be emphasized enough, for that is really what lies at the heart of the Project. When you join, intend to get to know the people who you'll be working with. I personally can say that I value the friendships I've made through the Project just as much as all the material achievements we've developed. Use the various project threads and an online instant messaging service to communicate ideas, discuss topics, and hang out with the people of Fate of Io. Of course, there are some people you should know right away...
First of all, there's me, Dev. I founded the Project in February of 2001 and have continued to act as general leader. If you have any general questions or issues, feel free to come to me (and in fact, I like to talk to you guys even if you don't have any questions). I act as the Editor in Chief and retain the authority to make final our decisions in the Project.
Temporal came to me around April of 2001 with a lot of crazy ideas that would reform the Project's aim; we went from simply amassing contributions to seriously attempting to organize them into an RPG project. Since then, Temp has acted as Lead Programmer, providing an overall plan to follow in terms of game creation.
The Fate of Io Project is always changing.
As was suggested at the beginning of the charter, one thing to keep in mind about Fate of Io is its change. Historically, the Project has undergone several face-lifts and revisions. Don't be too worried if we amend a few policies here and there; really, don't be surprised if the Project undergoes major changes, either. As Fate of Io grows, we must continually adjust to new challenges and situations.
The Fate of Io Project is for fun.
Above all, have fun.
This may be the most important point about Fate of Io that can be made: remember, no matter how "into it" you want to get, we are all here to have fun. I don't hold people to deadlines or quotas of any kind because if they don't want to do it, then frankly it's not worth doing in this Project. My greatest concern is a contributor who is so bent on the success of the Project's endeavor that he or she disregards other more important things (and these really are more important than the ultimate "success" of the Project, though success is a subjective term anyway), such as school work, sleep, or his or her own enjoyment of their participation. If you don't find yourself having fun or benefiting from being here, take a break!
You might say that the Fate of Io Project is made up of professional amateurs. For most of us, this thing is on the back burner, so to speak. If things don't happen quickly, be patient and remember that it's important not to take things too seriously. Become comfortable with the Project, whatever that means for you.
Explore, create, build. See you there.
- Dev, Founder of the Fate of Io Project
Charter version 2.1