Couple of other general points I want to make, now that I've made it through all of these comments:
- Obviously, performance was a huge issue from the start - I think by now, the vast majority of issues have been worked out. There was slowness again in the middle of the night a few days ago, but other than that the page loading seems fairly responsive to me. If there are specific pages you find aren't loading quickly, I would certainly like to know (best to post in the Site Upgrade or Web Dev threads or even a PM - not here, as I don't plan to come back to this thread after this post)
- The Hardware Graph section (top left of home page) is not permanent. We desperately wanted to replace it before this upgrade, but simply ran out of time which is unfortunate. On the plus side, we've been doing some research on new charting tools in general - so in addition to upgrading that chart section at some point, @Ryuu96 as some nice suggestions on personalized charts for profiles based upon your game collections and whatnot. Hopefully, we'll even be able to replace and upgrade ALL of the tools in the Tools section of the website. We'll have to see how that development goes. The main point is, it's unfortunate to put out an upgrade and one of the first (and most noticeable) things we all see, is an outdated chart that we are doing away with - such is life. It is what it is, and it will get dealt with.
- Still seeing lots of questions (here and other places) either requesting features that already exist, angry about something on the site that they don't realize they can adjust on their own, or just a general lack of knowledge about some of the coolest functionality on this site. I'm open to suggestions as to how best to get attention to these features - I'm sure we've done the FAQs approach more than once or twice, but I'm at a loss as to help people make full use of everything available to them.
I guess some thing have sped up, but other stuff is still slow... Not sure if it's still the case, but when I was going to next pages of thread, they basically wouldn't load. I would think upgrading to new server version should have FASTER site, not slower, or that should be goal. Maybe some stuff with UI is good like dark mode and menus, but overall the front page is a wreck, way too much space used on graphics, from user icons to too large flags and 'logos' for sections.
Cut that down, and make it more information dense, 99% of the time I am only interested in 5-10% of the content and I assume most users are like that, so it needs to be streamlined so you can easiliy scan the whole page and have the items you are interested pop out, which boils down to the TEXT. If you have space to include game cover without impeding the rest, OK, but the game graphics is not something that actually lets me navigate the page, i.e. I see the pic and know to click on it, etc. The article graphics likewise could be smaller so more can be fit in smaller area to allow less scrolling.
The 'modal' buttons like in upper right of page (to switch display of (sub)forums) seems absurdly wasteful: Spreading out "Hot Topics", "Latest Topics" over two lines... all to have a bunch of empty horizontal space? Having "scroll" function when there is only 5 subtopics that only need one "scroll" click in the 1st place?? Why not break it up into 3 column X 2 row text array, 1 for Forum in general, 5 others for each sub-topic? ->No scrolling, direct access, and only needs normal HTML text instead of empty-space wasting "button" BS.
Also look at how small choice end up forcing suboptimal layout: "Global Hardware Weekly - Week 44, 2020 " is long enough it forces 2nd line, but is that really neccessay? Instead, why not just say "Global Hardware - Week 44, 2020", repeating Weekly/Week doesn't seem necessay.
It looks like the full "Articles" have good space saving approach of overlaying text atop the b/g graphics, Why don't the shorter "Latest Stories" content use the same approach? Just that one step would makethem take about 40% less vertical space, reducing the "required" scrolling by that much instantly. Those graphics themselves seem like they could be reduced to 60% current height while still being good quality. It's possible the "top Article" and it's graphic could also be similarly reduced in size, I mean is the current Global Sales Chart article REALLY that amazing that everybody must have it take up 1/3 of the front pagevertical space, which forces more scrolling? I don't think so, having one item bigger is understandable,but I think that still works at only 60% of current "top article" image's current size.
Going by the rouglhy 3" of black space on sides of my screen, I also wonder if the layout could be adaptable, Seems like alot of people could easily use 3x wide layout for the articles (instead of current 2 column layout), reducing scrolling by 50% in one go. Honestly I think the vast majority of people have "wide screens" that could easily add an extra column,so just making that the default seems reasonable, even if page will scale back to 2x wide article layout on smaller screens.
EDIT: Posting this from quick reply takes FOREVER and seems to hang, that seems another problem. Also the Quick Reply doesn't keep any blank lines between paragraphs, I had to go back and EDIT this so it didn't look like giant un-readable wall of text.
Having a hard time understand most of what you're having issues with - perhaps a screenshot or two detailing exactly what you're talking about would help. Keep in mind, many of the changes were made with mobile devices in mind, like the forum scroll. It used to be an impossibly difficult drop-down to try and navigate on a cell phone - with the scroll, it's much easier to slide back and forth (even on desktop, you can simply use your mousewheel to scroll the tabs), so I have hard time understanding what makes this so difficult for you. Again, maybe something's not displaying correctly in your browser (hence, the request for screenshots).
I originally had the text in the images (just like the top-5), but the general consensus was that all the "movement" was making things look too busy - so it was pulled back, and the text placed underneath.
I didn't like the lag the other day, but I really like how things are more compact, how you can quickly navigate between different forum sets via smooth buttons, and the thing I'm most happy about is how the My Games section on our profiles have been redone. That is the most used feature on this site for me, as I like to keep records of all my reviews (all 150 of them or so and growing). Nice work!
Feature that I really want that's still missing is to use the scores from My Games to count as the userscores when looking up games. Instead, we have to enter a user score in addition to scoring it on mygames, which means a lot less user scores are being entered and therefore the results are skewed. It would be a lot of fun to have a realistic view of what this sites users think about major games.
Though I just checked and here is Hades:
Either I'm wrong and this site does, in fact, merge those scores (which means only two people, one of which is me, have claimed to own this game on this site and that seems inaccurate), or something else is going on here.
Not sure I fully understand what you're talking about, but I'm going to take a stab at it!! You're conflating the User Review Score and the Game Ratings (which are separate values). It looks like you've definitely figured it out now because yes, that rating in the Community Stats section is, in fact, an average from everybody's game ratings. You can either select your rating from the Profile Page or, if you own the game, you can do it on that game page in that Community Stats section - either way, your score is accepted and averaged into that Avg Community Rating.
And if it says only two people own that game, then that's what it is (you'll note a few posts down, another user that doesn't even know we have this feature - so again, this goes back to my previous comment - would love to get more people involved with these features, but I have no idea how to get word out of their existance!!!)
So many days in and I'm still bummed. There have been many updates in the last few years and none of them have done anything to make the front page any more attractive. And with this latest update I had thought (obviously wrongly) that someone at the top finally noticed, agreed, and had come up with a stylish template to showcase this great site. But sadly, it seems that with so many cooks in the kitchen, so many disparate ideas being tried in various parts of the site, that there doesn't seem to be one overarching designer that has a vision for how a modern, sleek website should look.It's almost painful every day to watch VGC load. The forum on the side of the page starts out broken as it loads in, and as the pieces fall into place you realize that the final resting space of those elements doesn't look that much better than the faulty load that appears when you first open the page. I get that everything that was done was done to the nuts and bolts behind the scenes, but I'm still looking forward to a time that VGC looks like a professional website and not a cobbled together student project. Just look at everything in the header. It's smooth, laid out well, soft, rounded and professional. Just about everything below that is just crammed into the page with a cacophony of images and text without a single image compelling you to look at it, and to enjoy it. It's a sad state of affairs for all of the people who work so hard to make this website work, and I'm not sure who I'm throwing shade at, but I'm not doing it maliciously. I just wish for better things for the site, and I always have.
The "broken forum" thing was already addressed as part of the performance corrections. This shouldn't be an issue, anymore. The rest of your comments are so generalized, they go beyond being helpful. So, if you have specific ideas - feel free to post them (again, not in this thread - either the Upgrade or Web Dev ones).
Love it. My favorite feature is that now I can actually choose consoles older than the N64 to filter games in my collection. The site loads slower for me, but its not that bad.
Eh? What's this? Where is this feature to add games in your collection?
This is a feature we've had for at least a decade at this point - it's gone through various changes over the years and it's still not quite perfect in the profiles, but I can say with 100% confidence that all the BUGS have finally been ironed out of it! You can add games to you profile in two ways:
- Within your profile, there is a Games tab. You can look up games, add them to your collection (or track or wishlist or whatever else) and rate them. You can also view your games as a "collection" which is a so-so (but marked for improvement on the next go-round) display of all your games.
- On the individual game pages themseves - at the bottom of the left column is a Community Stats section where again, you can mark games for owned, wishlist, etc.
One feature that was enhanced awhile back with the "tracking" option - it used to do nothing, but that has been changed so that if you are tracking a game, you will receive notifications anytime a thread is started with that game tagged to it, or an article about that game is written.
I find the new forum index worse than the old one (and dunno if it's due to my browser, but I can't even reach all the tabs - most notably not the sales tab) and it looks a bit like everything and the kitchen sink got cramped into it, but apart from that I like the design.
The other thing I'm lamenting about is that for the platform totals now every region is it's own page. Why couldn't it be done like before, without having to load a new page every time I switch the region?
- Screenshot of forum index?
- Not sure I understand the issue with platform totals - I don't remember making any change in that section at all. Links?
Formatting is broken on mobile. Oftentimes multiple overlapping ads will fill the screen, and it will take multiple refreshes to finally reach the home page. Even when I do get through, I can't really see much of the design because I have to scroll around so much. Quotes are still broken for me in mobile too. I'll see how it functions on desktop eventually, I suppose.
- Ads suck, I know - but beyond that, what's broken on mobile? Screenshots, please? Broken quotes? Much of this I have no insight into, but considering the amount of time put into making sure this site remains at least somewhat mobile friendly, none of what you've written makes me happy - so I'd really like to see what it is that you're seeing.