The Thema Devia, also known simply as the "TD" is Total War Center's off-topic forum. It is part of the Games, Activities and Chat section. The Thema Devia is meant for discussion about topics which are not already covered by the other forums on the site. While one may talk about most topics there, violating the Terms of Service is not allowed. In the past the Thema Devia had a well-developed role-playing side, even going as far as to have it's own "monarchy" for a time, however, this was cracked down on by Moderation in February 2012, when several threads were locked and a warning posted here in order to dissuade such behaviour in the future.
Despite its "purposeless" status, the Thema Devia has been an object of great interest for many - in fact probably because of its aimlessness rather than despite it. In particular, a survey and subsequent article has been compiled about it (here). What lies within can be summarized to the following points:
- Namely, most regulars of the Thema Devia didn't consider the area for a long time after joining the site. Of the few who actually find the "Welcome to TWC" thread, a very small minority actually continues to post in the Thema Devia. The most frequent time span between registration and starting to post frequently in TD is between 1 and 2 years. The aimlessness and general low quality of content there keeps most newer members stuck to what they consider the "core" of the site in the modding fora and perhaps Discussion and Debate. Curiosity and desire to discover the rest of the site is what attracts users to start perusing the Thema Devia.
- The main reasons the Thema Devia is so appealing as to keep such a large base of regulars, are that it is TWC's "lulz capital" where the most easy laughs and socializing can be found. As such it provides a good, lighthearted pastime to many, and a distraction or place to cool off after a bout of heated DD posting/reading. Additionally some of the threads and discussions there actually interest people, whether it's news deemed out of place in the Political Mudpit or some of the larger threads like You Laugh You Lose, the Beer Thread, the rating thread and so on. There is division, however, between regulars who see the Thema Devia only as a way to escape boredom, and overall don't find much worth in it, or those who value the discussions and sociable aspect of the area. The Chat Thread would be an obvious example of this, despite the fact that conversation there tends to be of low quality often bordering on insanity. There is also the "Foreign Languages" area, which is useful for obvious reasons.
- As for the denizens of the Thema Devia themselves (known colloquially as "Devians") many revel in the ability to post or post in troll threads, to make sarcastic jokes and generally post in a less formal manner than in other discussion-based areas of the site. Some members pejoratively liken the population of the Thema Devia to that of 4chan, citing low intelligence, poor attention to grammar and lack of sensitiveness, although many find such a comparison unfair and emphasize on the good spirits and inclusiveness of the TD community. There are very few citizen regulars of the Thema Devia, although recently many have joined the Content Staff.
- Moderators are fairly lenient on the Chat Thread when it comes to certain rules, like "discussion of other members". This is done largely in order to accomodate banter and bonding within the community, although the Chat Thread also has its own set of rules, some of which are not included in the main ToS - make sure to read these in the OP before you post. Insults and other ToS breaching phenomena are still infractable as per the ToS, even when done in jest or sarcastically.