EDIT/UPDATE: As a result of the discussion I'm planning to call some form of vote regarding this issue. You can read more about this from [this post](https://boards.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/c/roleplaying/ZTfqxGBr-on-the-current-state-of-the-boards-suggestions-moving-forward-discussion-thread?show=flat&comment=0024) onward but I'd also suggest reading the rest of the thread to get caught up on the discussion.
Before I say anything else, I wanted to make it clear that I invite everyone to put forward their thoughts/opinions regarding this post. I made it to put forward a suggestion but also to spark discussion about the boards.
Hi, hello. You probably don't know me but I'm Kalofinx/Rossendale, a former active RPer that mostly lurks nowadays. The decline of activity on the boards (more on that later) + some other stuff prompted me to make this post. Let me get straight to my point -
The boards are dying. And we should do something about this.
No, seriously. We used to have new threads popping up near constantly but now the current ones on the frontpage are weeks old. Any threads that do pop up get little if any traffic at all and whatever thread I look into has replies spaced out across weeks. You can say that I'm somewhat contributive of this with my inactivity, and you're not exactly wrong, but it doesn't change the fact that we're in a period of greater stagnation than anything I've ever seen before. This goes beyond normal stuff like holiday time coming to and end and whatnot. People just don't want to stay on our boards and a lot of people I've talked to have expressed the opinion that we're basically half-dead.
Now, I wish I could say I have a solution that will certainly fix this but I don't. What I have is an idea. An idea that a lot of you will dislike, find radical and perhaps dismiss outright as loony talk. But I beg you to at least last until the end of this post so I can explain my reasoning because I think this is something that is worth trying. My idea is pretty simple, actually.
_Remove the Champion Compendium and open up Champion Roleplay to everyone, whereever and whenever they want._
Still with me? Okay. Now, obviously I'm not just throwing something like this out into the wind. The way I wound envision a Compendium-less system is that by default you'd be allowed to roleplay any Champion in any thread, but thread creators would have the ability to set restrictions - such as no champions allowed, only champions allowed, only one person RPing any particular champion allowed, etc, etc. This way grants the most freedom for people to do exactly what they want on the boards as they can create threads to suit their particular needs.
Now, I'm perfectly aware that this would mean that people who are currently RPing champions would have their privilege of being the only RPer of said champion taken away. However, nothing about my proposed system says that you have to drop any current roleplays you have or even that you necessarily need to stop having an Ask Thread. You could still carry on being a champion sitting in their home and answering letters but the difference is that other people can do other stuff with that champion too. It also solves the numerous issues we have around Champion activity because now there's no privilege/responsiibility when roleplaying a Champion - you just do your thing and other people do their thing. There's no longer a need to beat people around the head with the Roleplay stick because "hogging" a champion no longer has any particular impact on anyone else other than yourself. In fact, with this system you could even open up Ask Threads to OCs because it's a system governed almost solely by who and what other people decide to interact with. It's elegant and it requires basically the bare minimum of sacrifice on the current champion RPers.
So, why do I think this change would be good for the boards? Two main reasons. The first is because it would offer greater freedom to roleplay on our boards. How many people came through our doors wanting to pick up a champion just to be turned away because someone already "owns" them or because you need to spend like 3+ hours levelling a smurf and then make a long-term commitment to said champion? People who just want to RP a champion for one thread, or RP several champions in short bursts, or just pop in for half an hour and have some fun are almost immediately turned off the forums. This is an incredibly restrictive ecosystem for a board that at its' roots is about getting creative with the universe and characters handed to us by Riot. Letting anyone do champion roleplay would open us up to almost anyone who visits our boards - even if they just want to come and go for one roleplay, because that's still better than just turning that person away. And in a world where Riot's official boards are far from the most popular medium to discuss and talk about League, we don't get that much traffic and thus simply cannot afford to be turning people away for not RPing the way we want them to.
My other point concerns the question of what the current system is aiming to achieve in the first place. I wasn't around when the Compendium was originally conceived but from what I am told it was made because there was an overload of people playing the more popular champions which caused friction between the several versions of a Champion and made the less popular champions pretty much deserted. I look at the Champion Activity sheet *now* and out of the 137 champions in the League 34 are taken, with some of the more popular ones like Lee Sin remaining free. The problems the boards used to have were mostly facilitated by the number of active Roleplayers on our boards which, let's be fair with ourselves, is not really an issue right now. The problems that the Compendium system was aiming to solve just aren't problems anymore, so there's not much of a reason to keep things as they are.
To finish off, is this an immediate call to action? Yes and no. As I said, I made this thread to put forward a suggestion but also to spark a discussion. I welcome any thoughts you might have but these ideas are something that I genuinely think should be implemented into the boards.