Throughout the years, RMRK has had a long life, and continues to live on. This article will attempt to give a breif(ish) summary of RMRK's general history.
The history can be neatly split up into four "versions". A major alteration or noticeable change in RMRK can be considered a transition to a new version.
This, of course, covers the forums from their beginning. Well, almost. RMRK used to use the popular invisionfree forum system, though everything is lost when you transition to a proper bulletin board system. Crankeye's system of choice was phpBB. At first the forums were slow in postcount. Indeed, from the year 2004-2005, only 3,000-ish posts were accumulated. Crankeye decided to keep the forums open though, and you could say that it's good he did.
Later on through 2005, the forum started to pickup. As interest in RPG Maker increased (helped along by the recent release of an english version of RPG Maker XP), so did post rate on the forums. Members began to direct other people to the site as a resource for help. Non-RPG Maker related discussion also grew. The forums were no longer a "check every week" thing, most regulars checked every day, and found multiple new posts as well.
Unfortunately, this eventually lead to more spam and flaming respectively. Crankeye's only moderator, neosiris, was nowhere to be seen, and any and all moderation was done by Crankeye himself. Unfortunately, he didn't visit the forums often enough though.
When this became a persistent problem, the members grouped together and requested something be done. After a little pushing by the members, and a few clicks on Crankeye's side of things, RMRK had 3 new moderators; namely Silverline, HaloOfTheSun and dwarra, with pegasusgamer2005 added much earlier in the year.
Within days the spam and flaming had been significantly cut down, and there was a good chance that if you were online, there would be a moderator online also. fter a while, there were still a few bumps here and there, but this was to be expected, as by now RMRK had grown to a respectable size and level of activity. Christmas and the new year passed, and then in early 2006, to the surprise of nearly all of the members, RMRK went under a large change one night.
Crankeye had grown tired of the phpBB system he had been using all this time for the forums. Also it lacked several important features found in many others, such as subforums, splitting and merging posts and topics, and enhanced banning. Thus, one night, Crankeye switched the forums over to the SMF forum system. At first many members were uneasy, even opposed to to change, though within a week or two pretty much everybody was fine.
The forums continued to grow at this time, and many of the regulars had stopped using RPG Maker, though decided to stick around for the general discussion side of things
When the site and forums began to get more frequent downtime, and eventually went down completely at the beginning of august, for a while there was nowhere for everybody to go. After a few days, Silverline setup a forum on crankeye.org, which proved sucessful. Around this time, IRC also picked up in activity, and gained a few regulars also.
After a while, Silverline managed to get a hold of crankeye, and that day, the site & forums returned, now hosted by Silverline. Crankeye's old host was disgruntled with the amount of usage (both cpu and bandwidth) that Crankeye had been using, and wouldn't give Crankeye a backup of his data. Because of this, he used an old one from April. This resulted in around 14 weeks of posts being lost, though it was the preferred option over starting fresh completely.
For a while, the forums were still run on the crankeye.com domain, though they weren't very fast, and occasionally members would get timeout errors. Silverline fixed this issue buy buying dedicated hosting specifically for the forums (as well as a new domain name; rmrk.net, on which the forums now reside. Silverline continues to pay for and help with running the forums.