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What would you like to see more of or change on SP/BoM?

Discussion in 'Sorcerous Sundries' started by Taluntain, Feb 10, 2011.

  1. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    [​IMG] A loaded question, I'm sure, but anyway... it's certainly not for my lack of ideas, but moreso the other way around. There are just so many areas of the site or the boards that I've been intending to update or change in some way for such a long time that I'd like to get some direction input. That is, what's the most important to the community so that it gets priority over the rest of the stuff.

    Don't be afraid to throw any big or small ideas around or criticize or express your pet peeves - any kind of feedback is useful for me at this point.
     
  2. Death Rabbit

    Death Rabbit Straight, no chaser Adored Veteran Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Midgets. We could always do with more midgets (I think I speak for everyone on this one).
     
  3. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    Well, I'm sure YOU could... anyway, I'm after serious feedback.
     
  4. Barmy Army

    Barmy Army Simple mind, simple pleasures... Adored Veteran

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    I do think BoM needs a breath of life. Compared to when I first signed up, the forum is relatively dead now. The vast majority of members are guys who've been here a while. I only really visit out of habit, and I'm sure the same is true of a few others. I think the problem is, it focuses on games that, whilst being classics, are very old now. It could do with more focus on the 'nu breed' on games. Some kind of push to get a bigger member base and new people visiting.

    And how's about a mobile version of the site? I'd like to see a choice of different skins introduced to.

    Of course, I can say this stuff, as it won't be me doing the hard work :).
     
  5. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

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    I wish that people would write more blogs. I like reading them, and it seems that many members have a lot to say, but oddly they prefer to say it by sniping in Alleys threads and then they go silent. (I've never understood the reticent message board member trait ... aside from outright lurkers, it seems strange to frequent a message board and then be demure about talking.) Anyway, why not use the SP blog resource to speak your mind in a comparatively safe haven?

    I don't know how that would translate into site changes ... maybe more blog promotion? Whatever the case may be, I think an active 'blogosphere' would promote site 'vibrancy' and all those other positive single quote descriptors people use to say that web sites are cool.
     
  6. Death Rabbit

    Death Rabbit Straight, no chaser Adored Veteran Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    I agree with Barms on both counts. I often visit the site with my iPhone, so a mobile translation would be nice. I don't know how difficult that would be to pull off, or how common handheld viewing is to make the effort worth it, though - so it may be asking a lot.

    Also - considering that Atari / Wizards of the Coast suck the big one and we're lucky to see D&D-themed games every few years (if at all), maybe the original mission of the site should change. Maybe broadening the scope of the coverage would be a good idea. You've already done this (with the Dragon Age forums, for example). But maybe we could expand others by giving them their own homes. Instead of "The Elder Scrolls Series," Oblivion and Skyrim could have their own categories. It would likely help attract posters looking for those specific games if SP was known as a place that featured those games specifically, not just casually. I would love to see The Witcher 2 get its own forum when it arrives, for example.
     
  7. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Possibly post a poll of what games or types of games members would like to have threads about?
     
  8. Rotku

    Rotku I believe I can fly Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    SP has blogs?
    [Edit] I literally just noticed the little green link up the top there saying "Blogs".
    [Edit II] And now I just noticed the big red button saying BOM Blogs!

    As far as changes, I really don't have an awful lot to contribute. I generally just tend to lurk around the Alleys these days, with the occasional (monthly?) visit to see if there are any more jokes posted. It does serve quite well for my needs.
     
  9. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Interesting question. I came for the advice on games and stayed for the banter. I haven't played a CRPG for years.

    I guess it depends on what you see as the point of this website. Or more precisely, whether the original purpose is still valid and whether it needs to be redefined for a new decade.

    I know that it takes a lot of work to maintain and update a site like this. Are you planning to run it forever?
     
  10. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Yeah Tal, what's your age category? Wyrmling? Adult? Venerable? Great Wyrm? :)
     
  11. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    Barmy - did you mean more games besides RPGs or just other RPGs? Because we've been covering a few other non-D&D RPGs for some time now. The problem is that most game developers today have their own game communities and herd all the players there, so there's very little traffic left for fansites.

    A mobile version of the boards is something that's long overdue, definitely... unfortunately that's tied to our forum software which has taken a nosedive in quality and development after being sold by the original developers. That's the reason why there've been no new board features in such a long time - we're sticking to the old version because the new versions they've put out since then have all been bug-ridden to hell and no real improvement.

    Getting the rest of the site to fit mobiles probably isn't realistic though - there's just too much content that would need to be completely redone.

    As for skins, do you mean for the site or the boards? And what kind of skins did you have in mind?

    We've done a bit of promotion for the blogs when they were introduced, but there's been very little interest. Even the people who tried them usually didn't keep writing for long. It's a shame really, but somebody needs to be really driven to spend time updating a blog on a regular basis - and not be intimidated or lose interest if every post isn't commented upon (much). The problem is also that there are so many other blog providers available that the competition is vast.

    It's definitely true that the blog integration with the boards isn't what it should be - this has been a constant complaint to the forum software developers but never really addressed properly. Not much I can do there unfortunately though.

    Well, generally I created broader forums and split them up if the traffic warranted it. In the case of TES and Witcher, there really wasn't much interest in the past, though partially that may have been a self-fulfilling prophecy as there wasn't much coverage of these games on the site either. I'll make some changes here.

    Well, the general focus of the site is and will remain RPGs. This is pretty broad already as the RPG field itself is quite huge and we can't even cover all of that.

    You're pulling my leg... I can't believe anybody could NOT notice that neon green Blogs text or that bigass Blogs! button on EVERY SINGLE PAGE in 2 YEARS. :doh:
     
  12. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    Some redefining is definitely in order... it's just a question of how much. We've been a general community as well as a (RPG) gaming one from the get-go so I want to build on that. But the fact is, the kind of fansite concept that was mainstream in the last decade is pretty much dead now (with a few exceptions) so that doesn't leave much to build on.

    Running this site in maintenance-only mode wouldn't take me that much time... the trick is to keep up the updates so that it doesn't grow stale. That's the really hard part as it's something you need to do on a daily basis to be really successful.

    To the left... below my portrait... :shake:
     
  13. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Ah.. Wyrmling...:p
     
  14. Barmy Army

    Barmy Army Simple mind, simple pleasures... Adored Veteran

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    Can we not focus on DA2 and Diablo 3 and what have you, and try and get people coming here for info? Get a partnership / link sharing with the Wikia site, or other popular sites for these games? Once people come, they might stay, but people need to know the site is here. Perhaps veer away from just RPG's, and get a forum for the new Shogun game? These kinds of ideas. My point is that whilst a few people might still want some information on BG2 mods or similar, these numbers will be small.

    The most busy forums these days tend to be the Alleys, which is a bit of a shame for a site that is predominantly a gaming site. I think BoM needs to focus on the newer games due for release and try to get into the public domain a bit more. It would be all good and well creating a new Dragon Age 2 sub-forum, but unless people know it's there, it will be pretty dead and won't get used.

    How did BoM get its big user base back in the day for the BG games etc? Loads of people uses to come here back then. The 'View New Posts' button uses to give pages and pages of stuff!

    I guess it's not an option to move to new board software then, due to cost etc? I would visit the site on my Android device if there was a mobile version.

    For the boards mainly, as I don't tend to visit the site. Different board skins, that are optional and can be changed by the user easily. Maybe a lighter one, game specific ones with different backgrounds etc? Obviously people can still use the current one, but just to give a bit more choice. I do find this one a bit dark and dingy (and it makes it hard to visit the site at work, without drawing attention!!) . It would be nice to just be able to have a change every now and again.
     
  15. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    We do focus on DA2 predominantly now, actually. :shake: When was the last time you checked our news? But aside from the news, we didn't really have much coverage on DA unfortunately so aside from Beren's walkthrough, there's not much to link to on SP. Trying to compete with a Bioware-sponsored wiki would be a fool's errand anyway.

    Branching out into non-RPGs with separate forums for such games wouldn't make sense, I think... what would be the criteria for which game would get a forum?

    As you've probably noticed, the BG2 forums are still much more popular than the Dragon Age ones, so the content that actually gets the most interest here is still BG2 and other IE games, funnily enough.

    Heh... we've had a proper forum for Dragon Age 2 for a long time now... and it's as dead as the Dragon Age one. The interest and the fan base is all at BioWare's forums.

    That was before BioWare started their own gaming community and made a concentrated effort to funnel all the players there. The playing field is impossibly uneven at this point, as I mentioned. Since then the games have also been significantly dumbed down and made easier, which naturally leads to a severely reduced need for help on the forums.

    Oh, it is... it's just a huge PITA to do it, especially since it's only been 3 years since we've done it last. But if this crappy situation with vBulletin keeps up for much longer, I'll either have to bite the bullet and upgrade to the newer version and try to deal with its myriad of problems, or move to different forum software. Either way, it's a huge amount of work.

    Ah. Well, creating different skins isn't that much work, the problem is keeping any kind of consistency across different ones. And there's the problem with images, because all our images are currently fit for a dark background, whereas changing to a light one would require various changes and workarounds to make things still look good. And there's the problem of synchronising any kind of code edits across several skins... still, at least one light skin shouldn't be that much work so I'll look into that.
     
  16. Barmy Army

    Barmy Army Simple mind, simple pleasures... Adored Veteran

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    Fair enough, Tal. I'm just trying to think how we contact the gaming public at large out there and generate new members. People need to know BoM is here, or it will only get quieter.
     
  17. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    We do get quite a bit of search engine traffic... but there's plenty of competition out there. Word of mouth and search engines are probably the best way considering the situation. Gaming is a huge field and it's very hard to get anywhere without specializing - but doing so necessarily means limiting your member base as well.
     
  18. Rotku

    Rotku I believe I can fly Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Selective vision? Well, I do see them now (and that red button everywhere - can't not see it now that I've noticed it). They aren't very used, are they? Maybe I should start one up, with no particular purpose in mind.

    [Done! A scribbling pad for my thoughts and records!]
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2011
  19. Silvery

    Silvery I won't pretend to be your friend coz I'm just not ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran

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    There is a huge untapped market out there....what about branching out into Playstation/Xbox games as well? A lot of these things have stuff that you can write walkthroughs for (I've written one or two myself on other sites) and they DO get used a lot.
     
  20. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    Give me a few examples of the games you had in mind?
     
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