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[Unpaid] GameDevTalk.com - Common Sense Needed (Game design knowledge a plus!)

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@Mods: This seemed the most appropriate place to put this. Please move it if necessary.
WANTED: Non-fanboy non-elitist gamers with an open mind and a knack for common sense. Knowledge of game design principles a plus!
Site Type: Focus Group Positions Available: TBD Pay: None Myself and a couple of the people from my Uni's Game Development Club are in the process of designing a website focused explicitly on game design aspect discussion. Unlike the billion other websites of this type you've seen out there, we actually have brains. (Surprising, isn't it) Hosting and initial construction is complete, however it is desirable to have as many people involved with discussion of the site's design and further construction as feasibly possible. Going where the gamers are didn't get anything but retarded fanboys, so we opted to go where the game developers are instead. Webdesign is not an issue. Post here if you're interested in participating in this project. (That's right, I'm not posting a link) [EDIT] The site has been implemented to a satisfactory level. http://www.GameDevTalk.com Please be sure at the very least to read the forum rules. [/EDIT] [Edited by - Maginomicon on February 27, 2008 12:22:06 AM]

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Original post by Taterpeel
Can you get a little more specific about this website will be like?


I'm not sure I understand the question.

I can't be much more specific without letting slip what our current plans are. The only thing I can tell you is right now the highest priority is to contact as many gamers as possible that meet the simple requirements stated above.

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Original post by Taterpeel
I mean, will it be mainly a forum, or will there be a significant "actual website" portion as well? Will it be for tutorials? Etc..?

There will be an actual website. At first, most of the site will consist of a wiki for content and a forum for discussion of that content (both of which I have prior administrative experience with, don't worry) If necessary, I'm perfectly capable of constructing a "mainsite" separate from those, as I have a decent amount of experience with PHP/mySQL.

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Not to sound offensive, but the site feels a bit like a rant. As some people on your forum already mentioned, these rules give off the wrong signal. If you want to attract serious people, then the site itself should give a serious impression as well. No keep-out signs or rantish posts.

There's something else I'm missing, and that's a clear mission statement. You've got a big set of rules, but the true intention behind the site remains vague. What exactly are you trying to accomplish with the talk group you're trying to set up? And perhaps more importantly, how can potential members benefit from it?


As for the sign-up process, that captcha is horribly hard to read (that, and the rantish agreement actually stopped me from registering). Does the site really need one at this stage? And if it does, can't you think up on a less intrusive method to discern human from machine?

EDIT: You may find this article interesting: How to Be a Great Host.

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Quote:
Original post by Captain P

Not to sound offensive, but the site feels a bit like a rant. As some people on your forum already mentioned, these rules give off the wrong signal. If you want to attract serious people, then the site itself should give a serious impression as well. No keep-out signs or rantish posts.


Agreed.

The only reason I put that stuff in there is because it seems that SMF (the forum software) doesn't have an inherent "board rules" section people can click on and read after registration.

However, I can tell you from prior experience as a webmaster (I've implemented those prime directives elsewhere with great success) that if you don't nip those issues in the bud at the get-go, (especially when your target audience is particularly wide) you leave yourself open to the potential of the board falling victim to exactly the wrong kind of people. (elitists and fanboys)

Fixed.

Quote:
Original post by Captain P

There's something else I'm missing, and that's a clear mission statement. You've got a big set of rules, but the true intention behind the site remains vague. What exactly are you trying to accomplish with the talk group you're trying to set up? And perhaps more importantly, how can potential members benefit from it?


The "mission statement" is stated on the mainsite. "...an independent project aimed at public involvement in game design discussion focusing on common sense (something games seem to be lacking these days) as well as established game design principles."

If you think that's a bit vague, realize that the site is a newborn, so not much detail can be put into the mission statement at this point until the preliminary target audience interacts with what's there. What the mission statement is saying (which is mentioned on the forum) is that the site's goal is to find gamers that are capable of saying more than just "this game sucks" but are able to recognize the parts of a game that "suck" in general terms, such as "the enemy AI keeps running into walls" and "why can't I jump over small objects in my way?" and then, discuss game design with them. Both of these are examples of reasons why a game would lose immersion because the dev didn't use common sense.

I see your point though. Did you notice the "About Us" page? :)

Fixed.

Quote:
Original post by Captain P

As for the sign-up process, that captcha is horribly hard to read (that, and the rantish agreement actually stopped me from registering). Does the site really need one at this stage? And if it does, can't you think up on a less intrusive method to discern human from machine?


SMF allows you to specify how difficult the CAPTCHA is to read.

Fixed.

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The group has agreed that the current "mission statement" is still a bit too "harsh" and have changed it to something more generic, "making the principles of game design easy for everyone to understand and encouraging gamers from all walks of life to get involved in their discussion."

To elaborate, "As the [site] name implies, the purpose here is to talk about game development and design. Our primary goal is removing the demographic barriers that make people think they can't learn game design."

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