We dig our way back into the world of Minecraft. This time we had a little chat with Voks_ who is the manager of Jartex Network. With an daily player count between 350 – 600, top ratings on various server listing websites, and running 7 game modes you can call this community true a power house. Starting as a “Trial” Voks_ managed to work his way up to the rank of manager in only a year. I was eager to hear his success story.
Hey Voks_, thanks for doing this interview with us, how are you doing today?
Hey Syff! I am doing fine! Thanks for having me today, how is your day going?
What can you tell me about yourself and the Jartex Community?
Well… Where to start, I am Voks_, the manager at JartexNetwork, I manage the staff team, social media and more! I started at JartexNetwork about 1 year and 3 months ago. Back then jartex was still really small, we were lucky if we had 40 people online, and at night (CET) there were 0 – 5 people online. But ever since Jartex has done one thing, growing to the network it is today. We are offering a wide variety of gamemodes with loads of different communities! With that we also have a very active forum community with loads of ideas and more!
I still remember when we had 100 players online at once, I was in a call with voodootje0 (the owner) and gunfire (co-owner, but admin at that time) and we were all so hyped about that!
How did Jartex grow into such a big community over a relatively short period?
Honestly, we have grown too fast, it is very hard to keep up with things. Back when I started as a Trial (yes, I have worked my way up here from Trial to the position I am in now) things were ‘chill’, you took your time to do things, the staff team was very small because we didn’t really need any staff. But as the network started to grow I started seeing the need in more staff, the owner was not really into staff / managing it so I took that job on me with approval of him. More staff, and new gamemodes made it grow, very fast. We started getting milestones, I still remember when we had 100 players online at once, I was in a call with voodootje0 (the owner) and gunfire (co-owner, but admin at that time) and we were all so hyped about that!
Once we hit the 100 player milestone things went really crazy, we hit one milestone after the other and now we have grown even more.
There are also some other secrets that I will reveal some of later as to how you can grow your server.
You guys are running 7 gamemodes at the moment being: Eggwars, Creative, Factions, KitPvp, Prison, Skyblock and Skywars. Can you give us a short explanation on these gamemodes for the ones who are new to these?
Sure! To not make things too boring I will try to explain every gamemode in 2 sentences!
Eggwars; A team mini game, you defend your egg (without it you can’t respawn) and try to destroy the egg from other teams. You can upgrade / purchase resources to make your team stronger and dominate the game.
Creative; This is a fun place where you can enjoy building, chatting with others, showing off builds or checking out builds. We also have some plugins added for some funny additions!
Factions; Raiding other factions, creating bonds (allies) and making enemies. Build your base and make it stronger to become the biggest faction!
KitPvp; Slaughter, team, dominate in an epic fight with different kits.
Prison; You are an inmate in Jartex prison, you will have to work your way up to get a higher rank in order to eventually escape… or not…
Skyblock; You are alone, in a world of nothingness… Just you, and your floating island. You have to gather resources in order to grow your island, you can choose to work alone, work in teams and have fun with each other. We currently offer 2 different versions, Skyblock Fantasy (vanilla skyblock) and Skyblock Dream / Forgotten with custom enchantments and some other things to spice up your experience.
Skywars; Just like eggwars you are battling against each other, only this time… If you die you are out!
You say you pride yourselves in creating a safe, fun environment for players of all ages. This must be difficult at times due to the amount of players online. How do you enforce these goals?
Yes, this is especially difficult. We try to make the server a safe environment for all ages. It is therefore that we have our amazing staff team. They help keeping chat clean, support you if you have any questions and ban hackers & rule breakers.
We also have rules in place in order to make the server fun for everyone.
As already said I manage the staff team and I am always working on expanding the staff team to create an even better experience for players.
With a big player base comes more work for (in-game) staff members. How is the staff hierarchy set-up and what are the tasks for each rank?
We currently offer 5 obtainable staff ranks.
Trial ; they are the new staff, they have to prove that they are suitable for the job. They are mainly focussing on keeping chat clean and helping players.
Helper ; they are the approved Trials. They have the same goals as trials with one additions, execute light punishments with bans.
Moderator ; these staff have a bit more permissions and also manage the report sections on the forums.
SrMod(erator) ; SrMod’s handle unban appeals, have more permissions ingame and can do a bit more than Moderators.
Admin ; Admin is a hard rank to obtain since we require you to have at least one additional skill, like being able to code for example. They mostly work backend to where the other ranks work more front end in the community.
What is your system of picking new staff members and what are the requirements to be a candidate?
We have recently put in place a new application system. We have a full list of requirements on the forums for the ones that are interested. But some of the main requirements are;
Experience,;we expect you to have experience with the community and the games that we offer.
Age; we have a prefered age for staff of at least 14 years old. This is to make sure that we have mature staff that has common sense.
Hardware; we want our staff to be able to perform voice calls and be able to record.
And some more, a full list of the requirements can be found on our forums!
Do you guys host (special) community/in-game events? if so, what kind of events are we talking about?
We do them every once in awhile. With christmas for example we had a building event on Skyblock. Players had to transform their islands into a christmas theme, it resulted in some really cool builds and the winners got some amazing things as a reward.
At this moment we do not host events on a regular basis but we are planning on doing more of them!
Any special upcoming events?
Yes! We have 2 events coming up, one is the release of an updated gamemode that we are currently working on! The other one is a raid event for factions! I can unfortunately not give any dates for these events yet.
Let’s talk some development, It is well known that Minecraft is highly customisable and can be crafted (pun intended) to a communities liking. Do you have your own developers, or do you hire third party developers?
We are doing pretty much all things ‘in house’. This means that we are not depending on any third parties. The owner is good at coding and we also have 3 admins that are able to code.
Are you guys working on anything special?
Yes, HelloitsRien (Admin) and myself are working on a gamemode that we can unfortunately not reveal just yet… The map is almost done and plugin wise things are going alright. We hope to start béta testing the gamemode soon!
Do you have any tips for starting developers/people who want to learn programming?
I personally can not code java, I can however understand it but I could not find the motivation to really learn java. I can however code / read some simple HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language). When you are trying to get into coding for Minecraft I would recommend that you first try and get your own test server up and running with some basic plugins. If you can manage the get that up and running I would say that you are able to learn the basics of coding.
There are of course a couple of options to learn it, you can follow classes for coding, learn it from someone, watch video’s on youtube, or find an elearning website. I myself have used codeacadamy which is a website where you can learn how to code.
HelloitsRien (Admin) and myself are working on a gamemode that we can unfortunately not reveal just yet…
Looking back, what are some of your fondest memories?
The moment I logged in and got a message from gunfire saying; Yo, we have read your trial application and would like to call.
Also looking back to the milestones we have reached I get a big smile on my face. But the best memories on Jartex are for sure the amazing conversations I have with the staff team.
There is always one questions that a lot of starting minecraft servers/communities have and that is : How did you attract new players when starting out? (for the non Minecraft players, there is no in-game server browser)
Well… Growing a server is not easy. There is a long checklist you have to do to even get a server up and running. Think of, hosting (where are you going to host your server), plugins, builds, staff. Starting of a server is quite costly, since you barely (or even not) make any money the first months / years.
We have invested a fair amount of money into promotion of Jartex on voting websites, also getting a website up and running makes it easier for people to find you. When starting up a server you have a lot of things to take into consideration, but with a 5 euro server that you host at the cheapest host ever you are not going to make it for sure.
Do you have any tips for (starting) communities besides on how to attract new players in the beginning?
Your staff team is your most vital part of any server, besides hosting & plugins. Instruct your staff team to have fun, chat, help & support your community. If you only have staff bitching on your players they won’t find it fun to play here. Get known with your communities and invest time in them. You will then find that they feel noticed and that they will also invest time in your server.
How do players join your server(s)?
You can join the server with (cracked & premium minecraft) versions 1.8 – 1.11 at play.jartexnetwork.com
You can also find the IP for the server on www.jartexnetwork.com as well as our forums and store.
Screenshots & videos by: _exploding_tnt_, MyNameIsCaptain, EndlessGamer & Voks_