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      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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Oluseyi

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We're hoping to provide customizable layouts, so this "stock" design is what you'd see if you haven't logged in or are just visiting. Once you've logged in, you'll be able to rearrange columns and move/remove widgets.

The greyed-out text in the upper-right (Events, Spotlight and Sign Out) are actually tab labels. I'm thinking of using the :hover pseudo-selector to indicate the tab outlines once your mouse cursor moves into the area.

The Recent Forum Posts area will extract the first non-quote sentence from the latest post, to give more context. I just got tired and didn't render it.



I am particularly interested to know if people prefer this approach to features or the one from the previous post. Thanks!

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Certainly prefer this one, allows you to see the last few in one go directly.

One question; any plans to feature recently updated journals on the front page? I seem to recall that pushing them some more was part of the plans.
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Original post by phantom
One question; any plans to feature recently updated journals on the front page? I seem to recall that pushing them some more was part of the plans.

Thanks for the reminder.

One of the more surprising suggestions I received was to have Recent Threads, Recent Journals and News share one widget container and work as tabs (the same way I have Jobs, Events and Spotlight up top).

So, yes, Recent Journals are coming to the front page. I'm just not sure what shape it'll take yet. Most likely is that I'll narrow column two, giving News more room, and then put Recent Threads and Recent Journals together in a tab box.
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The new Features box is better [smile]

I'm curious about what happens when the News box grows - Will it just not grow? Will it be scrollable? Or will it just expand but leave the right hand side of the page blank?

Taking a look in the actual Features tab we have the moment, it seems to me that the GD Showcase thing has a lot of duality with the IOTD's - perhaps a merging of the two would be appropriate?
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I have to admit that I am a sucker for clean, tightly-kerned sans-serif fonts. I want everything to look like The Designers Republic puked on a London Underground map.
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Original post by dmatter
The new Features box is better [smile]

Some people like the old one better. :sigh:

Quote:
I'm curious about what happens when the News box grows - Will it just not grow? Will it be scrollable? Or will it just expand but leave the right hand side of the page blank?

It will just expand, leaving the right hand side blank. Once you introduce columns, you lose the ability to constrain content to always be "balanced," especially for dynamic content applications like this. "The web is not print," or something equally pithy. [smile]

Quote:
Taking a look in the actual Features tab we have the moment, it seems to me that the GD Showcase thing has a lot of duality with the IOTD's - perhaps a merging of the two would be appropriate?

Yes, that's a good idea.

Quote:
Original post by Ravuya
I have to admit that I am a sucker for clean, tightly-kerned sans-serif fonts. I want everything to look like The Designers Republic puked on a London Underground map.

I haven't even done the typography work yet.
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How would this page look on a widescreen monitor? I'm using one part of the time and find it annoying that so much horizontal space is unused by many sites (gamesindustry.biz for example). iGoogle on the other hand is very nice, but probably overkill for this?

Other than that I like the starkness of the mockup.
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altho I did say I liked the big feature box in the first design, I can totally understand how people would like this one better because they can see all of them straight away rather than having to click through the scroller. Any thoughts on combining them?
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I'm a bit dual about the previous feature box and this one. I second Gaiiden on trying to combine them. Maybe keeping the most recent entry large like in the previous entry and a few more smaller at the bottom or something. I feel the same way about the IOTD box. I like the way you can see three thumbs with the current site design.
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Overall, I like the look.

The one, somewhat minor, concern I have is that not all Image of The Day submissions are going to look good in such wide panorama. For the ones that work, it looks great, for those that don't they're going to look like total crap.
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I prefer this one because it conveys a lot more information. I can find what I need quicker. The front page of a website like this should display a summary of recent activity and the second mock-up does a much better job of displaying the actual information. Plus the first assumes that each feature will have a decent high resolution picture that is unique to the article and represents the content. I would much prefer a brief summary of the contents to a picture that is essentially meaningless with regard to the purpose of the article.

With the recent shift towards wide screen monitors it might be better to try to compress the information vertically rather than horizontally as has been done in the past. This ties into my biggest criticism of the first page is that while it looks good only about half the information is viewable on my monitor without scrolling. While that isn't a big deal, it would be particularly nifty if you could fit all the 'overview' features onto an average sized screen. This monitor is 1600x1200 which is probably a higher resolution than most people. Also on that note the fonts seem huge in your mock-up.

Also the information in news/forum posts isn't very well separated. Especially the forum posts. What might work well there is to have each item in a slightly lighter/darker colored box with rounded corners and no border, that way it isn't a definite separate section but an emphasis on the contained information being its own piece of that section.

Overall I really dig where you're going with this. I liked the solid borders on the first, especially the tab accents for the log in/sign up section.
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