Mod Hands On: Multimail

October 15, 2009

The recent silence on the shop floor has been frightening. You have to understand that this place is typically so loud it is impossible to even think straight. I often am incapable of hearing my own voice.

Between the complete absence of unexpected explosions and the silence of dead machines, I really wonder if we will ever produce a tangible product.

The eerie silence is especially poignant given the nearness of All Hallows End. We will see how the next few weeks progress.

Guild Communication

In the interim, I want to tell you about a very small mod I have begun to use to more effectively communicate with my friends and guildmates.  There are a number of possible methods of communicating messages or news to those that need to hear it.

GD_250_SmMailboxThe Guild Message of the Day is certainly one opportunity.  As a communication medium, it is visible to every person who logs in and is in the guild.  However, herein lies one of its flaws.  For those individuals who frequently play alts, it can perhaps be days until they log in to their guilded character.  The MOTD is further limited by length, only long enough to communicate a short message to most.  Finally, it is restricted in its ability to communicate within the guild only.  Guild alliances or close non-guilded friends can not typically see this communication.

Guild forums are another method to communicate to guild members.  While these allow for much greater flexibility, most guild leaders will tell you it is a constant battle to get the majority of your members to read them.  Posts can be of any length and access can be granted to non-guild members.  However, if people don’t read them, they are useless as a communication medium.

In game mail is another communication medium with potential to have a greater reach.  You can reach the specific individuals you want, regardless of whether they are guilded or not.  It further has the flexibility of allowing for greater content.  Admittedly, it is limited in length.  However, with in game mail you do have the potential to send multi-mail messages, something that doesn’t work effectively with a MOTD that can not have multiple entries.

Unfortunately, sending mail to large numbers is something akin to cutting off my own pinky finger with a rusted metal camp spork.  It is time consuming and painful in its execution.

The Multimail mod may ease some of this pain and make the process a bit more satisfying.

A Mod for Mail

Multimail allows a user to create mailing lists of recipients.  Multiple lists can be kept at once, reducing the time to create a list of recipients each time.  Lists can be started from a number of different filters, including guilds, friends, and arena teams. Further, guild filters can be further separated by guild rank, class, level, etc.  These filters allow you to create large lists quickly, yet still individually remove or add names as required.

GD_253_Steamer_Trunk_MailboxAs a result of this interface, I can create a mailing list with guild officers quite easily.  However, I can then add the officer’s alts to ensure that mail is quickly received by those individuals.  I can just as easily create a mailing list for our guild alliance raiding group which includes players from many different guilds.

Once a list is created, I can write my in game mail, and then click the send button on the Multimail interface and have the mail sent to every character in my mailing list.

Mod Weaknesses

There are some concerns I have with this mod however.  Lists can not currently be named, so you have to rely upon your memory or out of game notes to remember that list 1 is your guild officers and their alts, while list 2 is your guild new recruits.

Furthermore, the interface is not the most intuitive in the world.  It is tagged on to the side of the mail interface in a relatively unaesthetic way.  However, it is functional for those willing to poke around and experiment.

Characters can also be added more than once to a list, resulting in them receiving multiple copies of the same mail.

Keep in mind as well that you will be charged 30 copper for every mail sent, so large lists can result in large postage fees.

Conclusion

Overall, this is one of those mods that has the potential to help with guild communication.  Whether it is actually worth the hassle of using it remains to be seen.  The possibility of recipients complaining about constant mail messages or message spam is a possible concern as well.  My recommendation is try it out and see if it is useful.

Does anyone else have any mod suggestions on how to more effectively communicate to guildmates and friends?  What about other mailing list mods that may be out there?