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Reverie World Studios Forums - View Single Post - Website Design Complaints/Suggestions
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:20 PM
Aro_ Aro_ is offline
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and i didnt have any troubles you stated there except waiting when i first come there
I'm viewing this through the perspective of a first-time viewer. No doubt you've had time to figure out and get used to this website; the casual visitor won't be as friendly or forgiving.

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The Text is fine in size... It is not hard to see, and if you are experiencing troubles you could easily zoom in OR just above your post that you are typing there is a size and font buttons see? we could type them bigger if you like?
I'm not thinking about me here; I'm thinking about the folks who venture into Reverie and have no idea how to zoom, or those large groups who use IE5-7 and still have to deal with a "Text Size" option. A majority of net users, including the people who Reverie are trying to market their game towards (teens), don't know these things; they aren't experts, and you shouldn't expect them to be.

A web designer should understand that most people could care less about how to use or figure out the browser; they just want to look at the website without squinting or without having trouble getting to the next page. If they can't do that, they leave. Who's losing a customer? Reverie. Professional game studios should care about their *entire audience*; excluding people when you don't have to is careless and lazy.

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however, the flash is staying, I believe. People who can't view flash simply haven't downloaded flash. Many companies are using flash these days, most of the sites for new games use flash, like Mass Effect 2 and Assassin's Creed 2.
If every game studio roster jumped off of a bridge because they thought it was cool, would you? That's the thing here; this isn't about who else is jumping the bandwagon *pretending* viewers or markets care about flash. It's not even about what *you* think; it's about your customer. You're hurting your website by making it entirely flash-driven; there's no link-colors to show users where they've clicked, no back button, poor site indexing (it can't properly index if there's only one page), no print option, and users with disabilities are screwed. You kill usability for what... goofy animations that nobody except you cares about? You'll find that *very few* willing to wait for the site to load to view a website that they don't need to view, while also trading in the fundamentals of their browser experience for it. This site takes more than it gives.

Regarding your examples: MassEffect is far more usable than the Reverie sites, because they use both flash and XHTML -- you don't even have to view their stupid, slow-loading video if you don't want to, because plenty of information is conveyed through text alone. (I still regard it as a usability nightmare, but less of one than the two Reverie sites I've listed.) Only design with flash if you know how to use it. Whoever designed these websites clearly has no idea how to design a website, much less a flash variation for a video game.

There are dozens of gaming sites that use flash sparingly, and prove to be more useable because of it, like 0AD, BigHugeGames, the Age Community, and heck, the entire HeavenGames network. All of these sites are more usable *and* do a better job at conveying their message than Reverie, hands down.

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On some forums, you can change the layout, colors and other things of the forums for your own personal preference.
With the default preference as something that's easier on the eyes, sure. If people enjoy small text, minimal visibility and low-contrast colors, they can switch it back to this theme if they like.

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We do have a website designer, a very good one IMO (Ryan Zelazny).
I haven't seen his new site, but flash is a bad medium unless you can remedy the problems with a pure flash design; give users a way to increase the font size, give them the ability to use the back button, and provide an HTML alternative to the flash design. The goal of designers is to make websites accessible to the largest audience possible; if they fail that, it doesn't matter how pretty the images are or how advanced their site looks, because they aren't doing their jobs. Appearances *aren't* everything, and if you have yet to understand this, I'm a very sad panda. For a website like Reverie, which is petitioning for a Heaven at HG, I'd expect them to dedicate time towards accomodating the largest audience possible; or else, how could they expect HG staff to dedicate their time to a game that is being very, very poorly marketed?

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A forum's main purpose is not to entertain you with its visual effects but to inform you and help a community form and discus subjects like this.
I understand the purpose of an internet forum; but pretending that new viewers will tolerate a visually-intolerant forum, just to get informed, is selfish and stupid.

If a design company is willing to lose a large percentage of their audience for a tedious, stupid reason like "using flash to stay competitive", what does that say about your company's development skills? How many user-friendly features *in the game* will you kill or what audiences will you alienate just so your game looks cool?