1. It was a singular experience, very enjoyable, educational, and enlightening.
Originally Posted by Bragard
2. Absolutely. It became obvious, even when our opinions weren't adopted, that those opinions mattered, and were being discussed "behind the curtain".
3. In the negative? Not to me personally. I was aware of some sniping at others. That was frustrating.
Overall, the experience taught me about the facets of the game I don't partake in, and an appreciation of the points of view of players who do partake in those. It got me to try some things I hadn't. I also know for a fact that, even if some things never come to pass, a lot does, simply from discussions between Council and Devs.
Mostly, it demonstrated time and again that, regardless of our differences, we really are a community. We all have things that we are passionate about, often they are different from our neighbor. But ultimately, all these passions go to trying to make the game the best experience there is in the world of FRPG MMOs, a way to experience Tolkien in unique ways. Even when the discussions got heated, they invariably stayed respectful. We could debate without negativism, and explore things from "other camps" without being told to sit down and mind our own business.
Being on the Council was the most positive experience in general open MMO gaming I've ever had. For anyone considering it, I can't encourage your application enough for next year.
In the mean time, be supportive of the folks on the Council for 2014. They are being listened to by the people at Turbine that can and do make plans and changes to the game we have come to love. Give the new team your support, and tell them your dreams, fears, and desires. You never know when something you tell one of them will end up becoming part of the game. If you don't share, it has zero chance.
[SIZE=2][B][I]Concerts, Crafting, Cosmetics, Horse Races, Chicken Runs, Role Play, Exploration, Screenshots, Video Capture, ... Oh, yeah, and some fighting the forces of evil bent on world domination and tyranny. [/I][/B][/SIZE]