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Topic: Front page discussion (Read 5773 times) previous topic - next topic

  • Fat Cerberus
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  • miniSphere Developer
Re: New front page in development
Reply #30

As for actual advantages and features, I was thinking of incorporating that into the "what is Sphere?" bit.


Sounds like a good idea.  I think it's important to highlight major features--particularly the ones Sphere 1.x doesn't have, such as ES6 support, debugging, a programmable compiler, etc.  That'll hopefully intrigue newcomers too, if they see all these awesome features listed.  If we can convince people that this is the Node.js of game development, we might just have a shot at making a name for Sphere. :)
miniSphere 5.0.1 - Cell compiler - SSj debugger - thread | on GitHub
For the sake of our continued health I very much hope that Fat Cerberus does not become skilled enough at whatever arcane art it would require to cause computers to spawn enourmous man eating pigs ~Rhuan

  • scojin
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Re: New front page in development
Reply #31
Looks clean; I likes

  • Fat Cerberus
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  • miniSphere Developer
Re: New front page in development
Reply #32
Looking at the page again on the desktop, I don't like the positioning of the screenshot box.  It takes up half of my 1080p monitor and sits above the "What is Sphere?" section, which I have to scroll down to actually read.  I'd recommend reorganizing it a bit to make the introduction readable without scrolling, so that newcomers can find out exactly what this thing is that they've just stumbled upon; the slideshow should go alongside the intro text as if to say "See?  This is what you can make with our engine!".

Not sure what else right now.  I guess the best piece of general advice I have is this: Try to design the website the way I designed the Sphere v2 API and imagine you've just discovered this thing.  You want to intrigue these users, not scare them away or confuse them.
miniSphere 5.0.1 - Cell compiler - SSj debugger - thread | on GitHub
For the sake of our continued health I very much hope that Fat Cerberus does not become skilled enough at whatever arcane art it would require to cause computers to spawn enourmous man eating pigs ~Rhuan

  • Radnen
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
  • Senior Staff
  • Wise Warrior
Re: New front page in development
Reply #33
Not bad. It fits the white, simple theme of the sphere forums.
If you use code to help you code you can use less code to code. Also, I have approximate knowledge of many things.

Sphere-sfml here
Sphere Studio editor here

  • DaVince
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  • Administrator
  • Used Sphere for, like, half my life
Re: New front page in development
Reply #34
Thanks for the feedback! Gonna finish it in the weekend, since I'm a little overworked atm...


Looking at the page again on the desktop, I don't like the positioning of the screenshot box.  It takes up half of my 1080p monitor and sits above the "What is Sphere?" section, which I have to scroll down to actually read.  I'd recommend reorganizing it a bit to make the introduction readable without scrolling, so that newcomers can find out exactly what this thing is that they've just stumbled upon; the slideshow should go alongside the intro text as if to say "See?  This is what you can make with our engine!".

I've considered this, and it's been bothering me as well. It was a little difficult to fit things in: making the screenshot box smaller made it look worse. The reason why "What is Sphere?" IS still visible is so that interested people can keep scrolling, realizing that there IS more information on the engine.

But actually, my plan was to have two columns for the "what is Sphere?" bit: really clear, succinct text on the left, and... a screenshot of Sphere in action on the right. But now that I think about it, that screenshot could totally be just the game preview slider. ;D
  • Last Edit: February 08, 2017, 03:29:34 am by DaVince

  • Fat Cerberus
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  • Global Moderator
  • miniSphere Developer
Re: New front page in development
Reply #35
Quote
But actually, my plan was to have two columns for the "what is Sphere?" bit: really clear, succinct text on the left, and... a screenshot of Sphere in action on the right. But now that I think about it, that screenshot could totally be just the game preview slider. ;D


Right, that's what I was envisioning too.  You tell people about Sphere and at the same time show them different types of games that can be made with it.
miniSphere 5.0.1 - Cell compiler - SSj debugger - thread | on GitHub
For the sake of our continued health I very much hope that Fat Cerberus does not become skilled enough at whatever arcane art it would require to cause computers to spawn enourmous man eating pigs ~Rhuan

  • DaVince
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  • Administrator
  • Used Sphere for, like, half my life
Re: New front page in development
Reply #36
I'm resuming work on this in the weekend. In the meantime, any suggestions about what games we should showcase on the front page would be appreciated! I'll limit/randomize their order of display as well.

So far, I can think of:

  • Spectacles
  • Trial and Error
  • Blockman
  • Genesis Project
  • Hold The Line
  • Zero Impossible Fortress
  • Aquatis
  • Kefka's Revenge
  • Sir Boingers
  • A selection of Beaker's games, although preferably some that would also work on miniSphere as he tends to modify the engine itself (Rework the Dead: Evil?). And maybe something like the pic that's on my placeholders right now just to be impressive.
  • One of FBN's games or demos. Maybe something unique like that Ranma one.
  • Did Flikky ever make any visually appealing enough screens? Although a "programmer graphics" type screenshot could show off that anyone could join in.
  • Something by Flying Jester (I'm embarrassed about only the juggling and breakout games mainly coming to mind, sorry... I guess this is why having a dedicated site with all the games and their descriptions would be nice)


Thoughts/suggestions? And if anyone has any particularly appealing screenshots, please send them to me. :)

Edit: to be honest, I'm thinking of more around the community right now. During my internship lately I've discovered just how powerful a CMS like WordPress could be, even just for managing and displaying all the different games that have been released for Sphere. We could then randomize the front page by fetching a few of the games (with screenshots) from there. But this is just future thinking... :)
  • Last Edit: February 08, 2017, 04:51:42 am by DaVince

  • Fat Cerberus
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  • Global Moderator
  • miniSphere Developer
Re: New front page in development
Reply #37
Note that Aquatis doesn't run out of the box on miniSphere, due to having mp3 music.  It should be nearly fully compatible otherwise though; that game was one my compatibility benchmarks during initial development of the engine.

For Beaker games, I know for a fact that Migget Chainsaw Hands works.  miniSphere was compatible with that very, very early on (even before the map engine was implemented!) :D
miniSphere 5.0.1 - Cell compiler - SSj debugger - thread | on GitHub
For the sake of our continued health I very much hope that Fat Cerberus does not become skilled enough at whatever arcane art it would require to cause computers to spawn enourmous man eating pigs ~Rhuan

  • DaVince
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  • Administrator
  • Used Sphere for, like, half my life
Re: New front page in development
Reply #38
Resumed work on the front page. Does anyone have good screenshots of Sphere games that I could use for this?

  • Fat Cerberus
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  • miniSphere Developer
Re: New front page in development
Reply #39
Here's some Spectacles: Bruce's Story screenshots you can use.
miniSphere 5.0.1 - Cell compiler - SSj debugger - thread | on GitHub
For the sake of our continued health I very much hope that Fat Cerberus does not become skilled enough at whatever arcane art it would require to cause computers to spawn enourmous man eating pigs ~Rhuan

  • Fat Cerberus
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
  • Global Moderator
  • miniSphere Developer
Re: New front page in development
Reply #40
Seeing stuff like this:
http://vincent.tengudev.com/temp/spherical/js/spherical.js

Makes me really appreciate all the thought I put into making the Sphere v2 API easy to understand, even at the cost of all the breaking changes during the experimental phase.  The state of modern web JS APIs is a mess.  if (readyState == 4)?  Seriously? ???
miniSphere 5.0.1 - Cell compiler - SSj debugger - thread | on GitHub
For the sake of our continued health I very much hope that Fat Cerberus does not become skilled enough at whatever arcane art it would require to cause computers to spawn enourmous man eating pigs ~Rhuan

  • DaVince
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
  • Administrator
  • Used Sphere for, like, half my life
Re: New front page in development
Reply #41
Gotta say, that bit was a direct copy from a StackOverflow post. It DOES look messy though. :D Generally it's a little more elegant than that. I might just end up using whatever PHP code the current site uses... as long as the module it requires actually gets installed.

I'm also a little stuck on the actual page content right now, to be honest. That should be about the only thing left (as well as waiting on NEO to respond on putting it online).

  • Fat Cerberus
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  • Global Moderator
  • miniSphere Developer
Re: New front page in development
Reply #42
Well, yeah, I wasn't faulting you for writing the code (or copying it, as the case may be); it just struck me as lazy API design.  Also, "XMLHttpRequest".  For a class that has nothing to do with XML.  I think whoever designed it must have been on crack. :P

Anyway, I did notice you seemed to be hung up on the page content.  Unfortunately I don't really have any suggestions... this is why I never made a website for miniSphere.  The "latest miniSphere version" thing doesn't seem to work though?
miniSphere 5.0.1 - Cell compiler - SSj debugger - thread | on GitHub
For the sake of our continued health I very much hope that Fat Cerberus does not become skilled enough at whatever arcane art it would require to cause computers to spawn enourmous man eating pigs ~Rhuan

Re: New front page in development
Reply #43

Also, "XMLHttpRequest".  For a class that has nothing to do with XML.


Ah, the good old days, when people who wrote APIs thought that XML was going to be the biggest and best way to transmit data over the internet.

  • DaVince
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
  • Administrator
  • Used Sphere for, like, half my life
Re: New front page in development
Reply #44

Well, yeah, I wasn't faulting you for writing the code (or copying it, as the case may be); it just struck me as lazy API design.  Also, "XMLHttpRequest".  For a class that has nothing to do with XML.  I think whoever designed it must have been on crack. :P

I dunno, I'm literally reading RSS feeds, which are XML files, so...
It'd be nice if I could fetch the feed using JSON instead, but SMF doesn't seem to support that. Or I can't find the feed for it if it does. In any case, I have code that functions (asynchonously at that), so whatever.

Quote
Anyway, I did notice you seemed to be hung up on the page content.  Unfortunately I don't really have any suggestions... this is why I never made a website for miniSphere.

It's going to have to be a combination of what features make Sphere in general so powerful, as well as what new cool stuff yours brings to the table. So really, having a list of features and trying to combine/cross some out would work well here. But it'll require some time to do and write the text I can't really bring up right now, unfortunately.

Quote
The "latest miniSphere version" thing doesn't seem to work though?

It just hasn't been coded in yet, only the latest forum post thing works. But it'll be easy enough to do. Also, the wiki is in a really sorry state... :/