This might be controversial (sorry!), but I personally feel it makes quite an important difference.
The UGC group has no financial incentive to produce content. As far as I understand it, the only motivation they have to keep doing what they’re doing is a diacritical desire to stand out from the crowd - to make their own personal mark on the game, get their own credit in a dungeon key or skin description, etc. Certainly I’ve noticed that many of them are fond of advertising their individual contributions on their forum profiles and reddit flairs. One designer whose work I generally really enjoy (although technically not UGC) has 5+ easter eggs in the game (no shade but that’s a lot). Now as far as I’m concerned this is an entirely forgivable and human instinct - surely you shouldn’t be blamed for seeking the recognition you deserve for your hard work…
However, for me the issue arises because this endless hunt for recognition is not properly systematised. All the many members of the UGC group seem to be striving for the same thing. A sort of agonism arises. Because each individual voice is clamouring to be heard - to receive the recognition that is their only reward - each UGC member that produces content is sort of obligated to make themselves distinct and identifyable. The result is irreperable damage to the character, tone, and aesthetic unity of the game. By the very ease at which I can guess who designed what these days, my main impression is that RotMG is sorely lacking in a holistic vision, and quite frankly taste. I’ll be the first to admit that I am a fairly jaded old bone with nostalgia for the charming simplicity of wildshadow days but I cannot ignore how much it cheapens the experience of the game for me.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m super grateful for all the wonderful work the UGC are doing to keep the game afloat. But I can’t help but feel that, in an ideal world, I would personally rather labour under the illusion of a fully integrated UGC that produces content under the explicit aegis of DECA, instead of competing for recognition at great cost to the game’s tonal/ aesthetic/ thematic consistency.
unpopular opinions amirite :3
edit: I also wanted to mention that DECA’s plan of ‘reconstruction’ is a functional solution to my concerns - if absolutely everything gets reconstructed. I wouldn’t mind sacrificing the game’s ancient heritage for the sort of professional consistency it surely deserves!