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  #31  
Old 06-11-2009, 08:00 AM
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Ryan Zelazny Ryan Zelazny is offline
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Once again Aro, as I said earlier thank you for your comments.

I'm just going to touch base on a few of the comments said in this thread.

As a professional web designer you should know that the party that has the most input on a website isn't the designer, it's the client. In this case my client is our publisher as well as our executive producer, Konstantin Fomenko. This is one of the first lessons of being a true professional, this is what separates a hobby designer from a professional. I've personally worked for 3 web design firms in my career, produced many sites for many different types of businesses and this is generally always the case. If the customer lets you do everything, they aren't getting what they paid for, they should be going to a template site for that and saving a hell of a lot of money rather than paying me 3 figures an hour.

First off, I designed Reverie World's current website, I've had very little complaint as to the design of it, your saying the navigation is too bright may be due to the display you are using, as I've not had a complaint so far and have had numerous people look at it, including industry veterans. However, thank you for expressing your concern on the matter. The load time on it is actually surprisingly fast, a 510Kb total site load is very small, considering I have about 3MB worth of content on the front page alone (2 non-streaming videos alone are 2MB). This great compression is due to flash, one of my favourite aspects of working within the medium is that you can put a ton of pretty content and still come out with a reasonable finish. If you also notice you can zoom on the text using your browser's zoom function, the text is not pre-rendered so it scales properly.

The current Dawn of Fantasy website was designed by one of our 3d artists, at the time we needed a marketing tool to be able to throw on a CD with the tech demo of Dawn of Fantasy to give to publishers (one of the other benefits of Flash is you can publish it as an executable file that doesn't require a browser). This design was then adapted for the website with the content slightly changed but the same overall presentation. I had no part in designing this and also have some problems with it. Mine however are more artistic in nature rather than functionality. My concerns are the texture quality, and I personally do not like the menu, I had to fight with Konstantin on the new website to go with a regular menu bar. The load time is very considerable, even on a fast connection this site takes approx. 10 - 20 seconds to load. This is due to it being done on Flash 6 a very outdated version of flash (and the actionscript used in it forbids me from making a quick change to exporting it in later flash version).

The new Dawn of Fantasy website is designed in purpose. This purpose is not what I had wanted when I first got the task to design the site. I personally wanted to do something that would cover a large array of info, and I had originally wanted to go with a Hybrid flash design, using flash for particular animations and for the menu. However as I stated above, I'm not the one who makes the decisions, I'm the one who makes the decisions of my clients come to fruition. So the new Dawn of Fantasy website is designed to look good, provide access to media such as screenshots and video, display news on the project and lastly give information on the game itself. This is a publisher's view of how to do this, you or I or the fans here at the forums may think this isn't the way to go, really it's out of our control as they call the shots on this type of matter. Konstantin and I do battle with every page of content (one of the few luxuries you have as a designer when you are on the company's payroll), changes that he wants to see, things that I want to keep, and we both state our reasons and a winner emerges in the end, sometimes it's me and sometimes it's him for better or for worse. So yeah, you may say there are functionality issues on it -don't think I'm an incompetent designer because of this- I may have already had such a system in place and either Konstantin or the publisher wanted it changed, really it's their site, not mine so that's up to them. I just educate them on the decision they're making but it's theirs to make.

The new site is pretty, that's the reaction we get whenever we show it. It has a greatly improved screenshot section, on-page video and a larger HD video portion. All the links and buttons are clearly defined and the contrast from content to background is high to increase readability. These things I can say are big improvements over the old version. You wont have scalable text on page -sorry if you need 18pt font to read- you're going to have to suffer. If you work in a resolution under 1024x768 you will have a hard time viewing the site (it's actually optimized for 1280x1024), and the new site is huge in file size a 1MB file size just for the framework, that doesn't include content (however due to a greatly improved way of loading content the site loads on average for a highspeed connection in 5 seconds).

Really when I design for Reverie, I design with certain customer types in mind. I design for high resolutions, highspeed connections, and for people who are impressed by art not by how quick google can find the page. I don't follow W3C "guidelines" by the book and really as a designer you shouldn't have to. They are guidelines for a reason, to guide you, it's not a rulebook. If you use them as a designer that's your business and all the better to you. I don't design for out of date technologies, I don't make sure people running Windows 98 using a 800x600 resolution in IE 4 running on dial-up will be able to view the site, they aren't in our customer base and for the small percentage of people who actually run systems like this it's not fair to deprive our target customers of a beautiful site.

I hope that you do like the new website Aro, but if you don't, that's your opinion. I'm not going to go out of my way to impress you, and I don't expect you guys to jump up and do what I tell you to do on the DoF Heaven site if I make any suggestions. I let designers design however they wish, if I don't think it's well done, oh well, that's my opinion, i'm sure a lot of people find it beautiful that's the whole point of using web design as a artistic medium.
  #32  
Old 06-11-2009, 08:10 AM
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I used to find flash very annoying while I was on dial-up and I still get frustrated sometimes if there's too much movies/animations on one page. One thing I do hate about flash links is that I can't r-click them to open that page in a new tab.

So while I'm mostly ok with it today I do believe there is such a thing as "going to far" when it comes to flash.

The old DoF website is mostly ok because once it loads (which happens pretty quickly unless you're on dial-up) you can sift through the pages quickly and easily access specific sections via links below which are always accessible so there really is no need to open new tabs.

'No tab opening' still bothers me a little when looking at screenshots and such because you have to open a new window and you can't open more than 1 screenshot at a time but it's not too big of a deal.

So that is this average user's input.
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Last edited by Jean=A=Luc : 06-11-2009 at 08:15 AM.
  #33  
Old 06-11-2009, 08:21 AM
Kire Kire is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Joslin View Post
Design seems to play a large part in why they like the site too (unlike you say). Everyone says they love going through the book.

I definitely agree with you, though, that functionality and ease of access to a site's content should be put much higher on the priority list than coolness and features.
As long as i can kill also some orcs on that site i dont even care about the content, just coolness =P.
....you know, for the better tomorrow.....

Last edited by Kire : 06-11-2009 at 08:33 AM.
  #34  
Old 06-11-2009, 08:51 AM
nickson104 nickson104 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kire View Post
As long as i can kill also some orcs on that site i dont even care about the content, just coolness =P.
....you know, for the better tomorrow.....
*imagines little sidebar flash game* Orc-Slayer!!! Lop the heads off as many orcs as you can in 60 seconds! watch out for humans though as if you kill one of these you lose!!!
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  #35  
Old 06-11-2009, 09:03 AM
Kire Kire is offline
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i was more thinking more about orcs jumping around on your whole screen and if you are lucky and clickhit him he die (different animations) and maybe also flush out lots of blooood and an eeek of the dieing orc =P.

edit: i am not fan for gore effect but at orcs i do exception =), oh and yea Nickson104 i am looking to you and your filthy kin !!

Last edited by Kire : 06-11-2009 at 09:07 AM.
  #36  
Old 06-11-2009, 02:32 PM
Asatru Asatru is offline
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I just wanted to say nice post Ryan Zelazny!

Also i think we are giving this threat way more attention that it needs.

If you ask me, when you go on to somebody else his place, and start shouting its not good enough, and then show them your own work ( the 3 links he posted ) then you better damn well make sure its awesome work.

But this isn't really the cause, 3 the same sites, with the same ( or extremely similar set-up ) and the art work well its also not something to write home about.

My point here is don't diss somebody else his work when your own work isnt much to back it up.

Anyways like i said this threat is getting way more attention then it should, Aro opinion has been heared, time to move on

-Asatru
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  #37  
Old 06-11-2009, 04:41 PM
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Dylan Bales Dylan Bales is offline
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Quote:
My point here is don't diss somebody else his work when your own work isnt much to back it up.
Aro_ is an amazing web designer, the HG sites are designed well. However, I have to say aoe3.heavengames.com loads slower than the DoF website - that's probably not his fault, though, it's all the things HG puts on their homepages (too many images.)

Not everyone is going to agree with that opinion of mine, however (like Asatru doesn't seem to agree). One problem I have with the HG sites is that I sometimes (when I first enter the sites) can't find the button to go to the forums or download section (because they're on the sides, where I never look) . Other than that, though, the sites look nice, and are great to go to.

We seem to be able to conclude that all web designers have their styles, and rules they abide by. These are what shape the websites, not usually their skill level. No one would hire someone that is inexperienced to design their website, otherwise they're wasting money; the company would most likely ask for previous experience before hiring someone, and would need to be impressed before hiring the person.

This entire argument has become a mere battle of opinions and taste over the way the sites look and feel when they're visited. Aro_ has proven he is trying to help, otherwise he wouldn't have commented at all. However, everyone needs to stop insulting each other over these things; everyone seems to be taking their sides in this, which is good, but insults are not. Calling another person "inexperienced" can definitely be an insult, definitely when they've already been hired by a company, and have proven they are not inexperienced to do so.

So, pretty much, we know Aro_ is trying to help, but most of the people here don't want to listen, because they've taken their own side, and are going to remain biased towards it, and won't even listen to some suggestions of Aro_. The web designers here have their own opinions on what a website should be like, and all will stick to their own styles; it would be good for them to listen to each other for advice, but that probably won't happen. As Asatru said, it's time to move on, that is unless someone has something to add to this; Aro_, thank you for posting your comments on what you think is best for Reverie, I know you're a great web designer; I'm sure everyone with Reverie appreciates any kind of help and ideas, even if they don't agree with them.
  #38  
Old 06-11-2009, 04:42 PM
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One thing I've noticed Aro is since you got here your 4 whole posts have done nothing but rip on the work of others. If every post you make is gonna be like this then you should leave, cause none of us wanna put up with your crap.

I don't know how other people feel but when I see someone generaly new to a forum, and they sit there and talk "All knowingly"(Is that a word lol?) about the the forums subject or anything else I get a little annoyed of the person. Ok quite a bit annoyed.

Now give it time and it might be different. Because of that time I value what people like Andy, Ryan, and Dylan and other Reverie peeps and also other Forums goers like Witchking say here.

How would you like for a total stranger to walk up to you and start calling everything you do complete BS.
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  #39  
Old 06-11-2009, 09:00 PM
The_Biz The_Biz is offline
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so it's ok to use flash for advertisements but not to actually display the content that's important?

because that's what I see at this expert web designers aok.heavengames.com

and I guess yahoo.com must have terrible web designers too?
  #40  
Old 06-11-2009, 09:57 PM
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Quote:
One thing I've noticed Aro is since you got here your 4 whole posts have done nothing but rip on the work of others. If every post you make is gonna be like this then you should leave, cause none of us wanna put up with your crap.
Mrdash, please stop being mean like that; he is really trying to help.

Did anyone read my last (ten million paragraph) post? I explained how Aro_ is just trying to help, even though he does it in a way many seem not to like, everyone should stop being mean to each other. Saying things like "none of us wanna put up with your crap." is very mean, please just stop that kind of thing.

It's alright to debate with him, but not in that kind of way.
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