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Marcade Leaves NeoBasic
(5/16/2000) Yet another major blow to a major QB site, as another webmaster from the Simply QB/Neozones merge breaks off.
Sometimes, having an amazing vision and a pretty thorough clasp of the QB industry can put you in a position where you can think about things that the rest of your peers may not be thinking about. It is this unique position where Marcade, main webmaster of NeoBasic, found himself when AhmedF stepped down as webmaster during the merge of Neozones and Simply QB last February. The result was Neobasic, a whole new site archive, and a whole new webmaster in Marcade.
The first action which Marcade took in restructuring NeoBasic was to install an NMP (Neo Marcade Profile) system. This would allow people who register for the system to have special privileges within the NeoBasic site. People registered will also be allowed to upload games on their own without the permission of the site webmaster.
Of course, such an action required changing NeoBasic's archive system. In a sort of radical change, Marcade then proceeded to store the 800+ QB files into a search engine, so that people may search for the file they wish by typing it down on the screen. This was a difficult change because it made some of the less popular files harder to access. However, this would allow the NMP system to work.
While this was happening, Marcade made a third and final change to NeoBasic. When Neozones and Simply QB merged, the site design of NeoBasic was much more similar to Simply QB than to Neozones. Marcade was convinced that NeoBasic needed a look all it's own. So he shut down parts of NeoBasic and literally built the site again from the ground up so that it would have the look it has today, what Marcade called the "Neo Marcade" look.
How ironic then, that after all those changes, Marcade would step down from the fortress that he rebuilt.
On May 15, Marcade reported to the discussion board at Future Software that he had decided to "leave the QB scene", and Marcade left a goodbye note which can be accessed at NeoBasic. The letter that explains his departure, which might as well be an essay, paints a negative picture of QB. In the letter Marcade explains that there are two distinct groups, the people who want the QB community to be harmonious, and the people who believe that they are the elite among all QB programmers (and therefore shun anyone who tries to get in the elite's way.) Fed up with what he considers a series of battles between egos, Marcade left QB and wished everyone the best.
Perhaps more shocking is the fact that both Pete's QBasic Site and NeoBasic have broken down almost simulataneously (within the same week), and for different reasons. Pete apparently couldn't bear with the way updating a QB site daily was impacting his social life, so he and Indigo Fox agreed to slow down the rate of updates in Pete's QBasic Site so that it updates "on an irregular basis". But with NeoBasic, the departure of Marcade, excluding the NeoBasic Discussion Boards which Marcade will occasionally visit, will cause site updates in Neobasic to come to the same screeching halt as qbasic.com unless NeoBasic is re-employed and quickly.
On the brighter side of things, NeoBasic's board control has apparently been passed to a group of Site Administrators. Also, the NMP system will still be active. This means that although the Site News probably won't update nearly as often as it used to, people can still submit to the site archive and write their own comments about their own games. This assures that the file archive (the staple of NeoBasic and Simply QB) remains active even when Marcade passes control of his site to the administrators.
Still, Marcade's departure (and the further loss of manpower in NeoBasic) is yet another sign of how some of the first QB sites are stepping back to give room for the second generation of QB webmasters. Perhaps the picture Marcade presents is true, and that some of the most talented QB programmers among us are more interested in insulting everyone than making great games, let alone helping people out. But if Marcade can rebuild NeoBasic from the ground up, then it is certainly possible for the QB community as a whole to continue to push QB to its limits and deliver new QB games.
So, goodbye Marcade. Good luck in your endeavors, and if you ever find that you're interested in maintaining a QB site or making a QB game again then I'm sure the community (and all QB programmers and gamers in general) will welcome you back.