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How do you all like the new forum?


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#41 G4Jedi

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 09:12 PM

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As for the forums I think Gafgarion has been one of the biggest factors in their demise (if you could call them that, at least if you know which topics to read you can stay clear of the 10 year olds who seem to hate grammar and spelling and anyone with a different opinion than them). In the posts I have read from Gafgarion he has mostly been speaking down on other people, sometime frankly put dissing them, their choice in games or them supporting a said game company (Blizzard, seriously for some time he replied to all Blizzard topics that they sucked...). I for one am glad you chose to keep your distance Gafgarion and hope it don't have to read your mean hearted forum posts again.
Oh, and these are Gaf's good qualities. It takes a great person to admit being critical in a world of yes-men, and most of all knocking down Blizzard on occasion because while a decent company they are, they "still ain't all that" you know. We all respect him for that. Thank you Gaf. :wink:

Anyway, good reporting is supposed to be objective, not biased.

#42 mrimac00

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 09:55 PM

Yeah, I'll say the forums have become too confusing with all of the new categories.

We only need General, Hardware, Shareware, Apple Software (but it should only about the MacOS, not anything gaming related),  Buy & Sell, IMG Feedback, and Off topic. The companies are really useless section unless they're going to be used as a sort of getting direct attention from some representatives of those companies. Separating in genres would help cutback on the amount of threads in General, but then General loses its purpose. So, let's stick with General.

The Shareware section is a nice addition, if people use it, post reviews, and shareware developers post announcements or ask for feedback.

#43 Quicksilver

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 10:12 PM

I can't believe someone was whining about having to go to page 2 in General when you're going to have to open 16-17 windows to view the IMG forums now!

The only specific topic that I thought was warranted was the RTS/Roleplaying section, because those discussions can get irritating to the FPS folk.  This is seriously messed up.  

As far as the reviews go, IMG (and Macworld for that matter) are far too easy on games.  I'd be happy to write game/hardware reviews if someone wants me to do that.  Out of the 300 games reviewed, over 225 have a 7.0 rating and above, and that includes terrible games like SpyHunter.  Remember, games are like people:  a few winners, a whole lot of losers.
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#44 George the Flea

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 11:12 PM

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Out of the 300 games reviewed, over 225 have a 7.0 rating and above, and that includes terrible games like SpyHunter.  Remember, games are like people:  a few winners, a whole lot of losers.
I think it's worth noting that because Macs mostly receive ports and because the consumer base is relatively small, the proportion of truly bad games is significantly less than on the PC side.  I don't see any problem with having most of the games with ratings of 7+ if that accurately represents the population.  Saying that they should be artificially lowered is like applying a Bell curve to a class full of highly motivated A students.  Not cool.

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I no longer have any desire to read IMG's horribly unobjective reviews and news articles that sound like they were written by 10 year olds who gauge a game's value on the hype it receives pre-release

Thank you for your objective, not to mention polite, attack on reviewers, Gafgarion.  You might also be interested to consider that IMG doesn't require journalism degrees to write reviews.  This is specifically what they want.  Since the people currently writing for IMG write like 10 year olds, and you have proven through every post in this topic that you write significantly better than any 10 year old (judging by grammar, spelling, and ability to make your arguments coherent and concise), perhaps you aren't as unqualified as you thought.  Or was that just an excuse because it's easier to scoff at others and not take any responsibility for bringing about change on your own?

Please excuse me for my slightly antagonistic response, but based on the tone of your post I feel it was fairly well justified.
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#45 xaphongod

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 01:18 AM

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Thank you for your objective, not to mention polite, attack on reviewers, Gafgarion.  You might also be interested to consider that IMG doesn't require journalism degrees to write reviews.  This is specifically what they want.  Since the people currently writing for IMG write like 10 year olds, and you have proven through every post in this topic that you write significantly better than any 10 year old (judging by grammar, spelling, and ability to make your arguments coherent and concise), perhaps you aren't as unqualified as you thought.  Or was that just an excuse because it's easier to scoff at others and not take any responsibility for bringing about change on your own?

Please excuse me for my slightly antagonistic response, but based on the tone of your post I feel it was fairly well justified.

Its not his problem... the readers shouldn't be the ones that have to correct mistakes, and re-write reviews. And Gaf does make a good point. Also, IMG has claimed always to be un-biased. Well what the heck do you call adding forums dedicate to its favorite companies, all of whom happen to pay to advertise on IMG. Un-biased eh?

Oh and for the record I've got dyslexia and still write better than 90% of those who work for IMG.

#46 Abecedaria

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 01:29 AM

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Hey Tuncer... where do flight simulator posts go?

:) :)

No doubt.

Where the --HECK-- is the flight sim forum????

It's... just... wrong...

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#47 landru

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 07:15 AM

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Yes, Shooters maybe get enough traffic to warrant their own forum. I'm far less sure about Shareware... I would maybe merge the two new ones and call it Shooters & Shareware (makes as much sense as RPG & Strategy... and even has alliteration). RPG & Strategy seems to have enough legs to keep.
This seems confusing to me. RPG and Strategy take a type of gamer to like, yet Shooter and Shareware are totally different. There could be an RPG Shareware game question. Now where do you put that :p To me, the shareware part should be deleted.

Yeah, on thinking it over I don't know if a separate shareware category is warranted. Especially as it's conceptually a different kind of categorization: Shooters, RPGs and Strategy all answer the question "What kind of gameplay does the game have?", whereas Shareware answers the question "How is this game sold?". Whaleman has made a good case for keeping RPG and Strategy together, though (not to mention I don't think either would get enough traffic on its own).

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I vote for killing shareware, Sports/Racing, and make Apple Software: Gaming blah blah blah an "Other", anything that doesn't relate to the categories mentioned or hardware. It would be good, because in there you could discuss those other genres, and OpenGL issues not pertaining to hardware and stuff like that.

No, no "Other"! That's what General is for; creating an Other forum will just cause confusion—something I want the IMG forums to reduce.

I pretty much agree with the rest of your post.

#48 Frigidman™

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 08:16 AM

All these posts complaining about new categories, and how the IMG forums are terrible. I think what makes forums terrible, are some key individuals who have no life and wish to justify their existance by getting the most post counts. These poor individuals constantly come on, rag on others, bitch endlessly about inconsequential personal ideals, and generally make an overall shotty experience for the rest of the viewing and posting public.

More or less categories has nothing to do with a bad forum.

If you all want the forums to truely get better, it would be quite helpful to simply 'remove' the certain individuals who ruin this community for everyone else.

With the generation of multiple more categories for specific information and discussions, this will help control the lowlifes. Well, unless they truly have no life at all and decide to go into every forum and pick on everyones questions and ideas. Sad little people they are.

But we all know who they are, except the new people who come to the forums. They are the ones who truly suffer, as they don't know which posters to simply skip reading with a roll of the eyes "oh god, that guy posted again, lets read something else."

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#49 OverLoad

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 08:21 AM

I've been thinking for a while that we need some new forums. As a matter of fact, I think RPG and Strategy should be separate categories. Recently there have been a few games that blur the line, but generally speaking they are quite different kinds of game.

I agree that the current setup seems untenable. I can see categorizing threads by genre or by publisher, but not both. There are a few regular IMG users who seem to get very worked up when threads are posted in the wrong forum. To prevent cardiac arrests, ulcers, and other major health problems, it would be best to make it absolutely clear what forum a given post should go in. ;-)

If I had to pick one, I'd say genres are better. It doesn't really matter how the forums are set up right now (so long as it's easy to understand which forum is the most appropriate for a given topic). But if IMG ever gets the functionality to let users set forum-specific preferences (as seen in Bioware's forums), then a genre-based division will be so much easier for us to work with.

For example, I love some genres (RPG, strategy) and have nothing at all to do with others (sports, racing). So it's unlikely that I will be 100% interested in everything a given publisher puts out. So (assuming for the sake of example that I could hide forums I'm not interested in at all), categorizing threads by publisher really won't help me find what I'm interested in.

On the other hand, if IMG can ever set up a situation where publishers will be participating regularly in the forums (perhaps even as moderators), then the publisher-based division might be the better option. This would take a serious commitment of time from most or all of the publishers, though.

#50 DaveyJJ

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 09:51 AM

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All these posts complaining about new categories, and how the IMG forums are terrible. I think what makes forums terrible, are some key individuals who have no life and wish to justify their existance by getting the most post counts. These poor individuals constantly come on, rag on others, bitch endlessly about inconsequential personal ideals, and generally make an overall shotty experience for the rest of the viewing and posting public.

More or less categories has nothing to do with a bad forum.

If you all want the forums to truely get better, it would be quite helpful to simply 'remove' the certain individuals who ruin this community for everyone else.

We can start with those posters who assume that criticism isn't sometimes warranted.

There's now far too many forums that overlap in terms of what should get posted where. If you're having trouble or a general question with a FPS game that's published by Aspyr but ported by Westlake where does it go? And should Freeverse/Ambrosia not have it's own forum? And what about questions about editors like Unity? General? Other companies (otte.dk) etc?

Criticism is what makes me a better designer.

But we need a place for flight sims and also a forum specifically for Rome Total War Mac Edition!

And where'd the darn smilies go!

As a senior usability expert and designer ... the forums were much easier to navigate and use in their previous form. My $0.02 (and 16 years of interface design experience talking).

PS. Bitching about people bitching also puts us both into the same category. It's like saying "All radicals should be shot!"

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#51 Tuncer (IMG)

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 10:40 AM

Keep the feedback coming. We'll make changes if we need to.
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#52 skyhawk

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 10:46 AM

less is more

I think there should be no more than 5-7 forums

#53 DaveyJJ

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 11:00 AM

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less is more

I think there should be no more than 5-7 forums

Yup. The fewer choices users have to make, generally makes for a more usable experience. It'll take some time and experimentation though to discover the best forums heading if they went this route.

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#54 Frigidman™

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 11:35 AM

I like "less is more".

No smilies!
No text colors!
No fancie buttons!
No Avatars!

Just good home grown simple clean easy to follow text forums... =) I'm an oldschool practitioner of KISS!

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#55 J@ffa

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 12:23 PM

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I think what makes forums terrible, are some key individuals who have no life and wish to justify their existance by getting the most post counts. These poor individuals constantly come on, rag on others, bitch endlessly about inconsequential personal ideals, and generally make an overall shotty experience for the rest of the viewing and posting public.

I've haven't read such a sanctimonious, self-serving piece of nonsense in a long, long time. You seem to believe that if someone writes about something that doesn't directly interest YOU, they must be banned from the forums? If there is one person than bitches endlessly about inconsequential personal ideas, it's you. How about we ban you, then we'll have less intolerant rambling to filter out?

#56 George the Flea

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 01:00 PM

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Since the people currently writing for IMG write like 10 year olds, and you have proven through every post in this topic that you write significantly better than any 10 year old (judging by grammar, spelling, and ability to make your arguments coherent and concise), perhaps you aren't as unqualified as you thought.  Or was that just an excuse because it's easier to scoff at others and not take any responsibility for bringing about change on your own?

Its not his problem... the readers shouldn't be the ones that have to correct mistakes, and re-write reviews. And Gaf does make a good point. Also, IMG has claimed always to be un-biased. Well what the heck do you call adding forums dedicate to its favorite companies, all of whom happen to pay to advertise on IMG. Un-biased eh?

Oh and for the record I've got dyslexia and still write better than 90% of those who work for IMG.

Did I suggest that he rewrite reviews?  No.  Point I'm trying to make is that if the problem is that the writers are all horrible, then someone who can write (such as Gafgarion or you) shouldn't use lame excuses for why they aren't willing to take the time to contribute and make the whole thing better.

As for unbiased, reviewers for IMG are paid squat, and since this whole forum expansion is experiemental to see if there's a better way to serve the IMG community, I don't see how trying out developer forums is biased.  Has Tuncer been frequenting forums dissing on independent Mac game companies and pushing Aspyr games?  No.  IMG tries damn hard to get the whole picture on Mac games, and has a lot about companies like Aspyr and MacSoft because they produce a lot of quality games for the Mac.  If you take a moment to look at the home page, though, I think you'll notice that other developers, people like DanLab Games, do get focus.  Humans are inherently biased (look at the language you yourself are using if you don't believe me).  That IMG is trying their hardest to accurately report on Mac games seems like they are fulfilling their stated purpose pretty well.

If you don't like it and aren't willing to dedicate your own time to make it better (or at least offer constructive criticism instead of making unfounded claims about the writing ability of IMG staff), then I suggest you find some other gaming news site.

Then again, maybe I'm just biased since I like IMG and haven't ever really been disappointed in following their advice on games.  :-)
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#57 Siriusfox

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 08:13 PM

I'm happy that it will clean up all of the WOW and halo Q.s but won't the forums start to become under-crowded/used in one area or another?
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#58 landru

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 08:44 PM

I don't have a big beef myself with IMG's reviews, mostly because I understand they're written on a volunteer basis, and I've never bought a game based solely on them anyway.

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Did I suggest that he rewrite reviews?  No.  Point I'm trying to make is that if the problem is that the writers are all horrible, then someone who can write (such as Gafgarion or you) shouldn't use lame excuses for why they aren't willing to take the time to contribute and make the whole thing better.
[emphasis mine]

When I read that paragraph, it sure sounds like you're suggesting if he doesn't like the reviews, that he should write some himself. Perhaps you could clarify what you mean if I have misunderstood you. Just because he doesn't write reviews doesn't mean he isn't entitled to giving his opinion of them, as are you and I.

Others have already made almost all the points I would make. I just want to add that with regards to the "average rating" being higher than 5 (out of 10), I have noted this myself before and all it ends up doing is make me is make me mentally correct for it when reading a review. Thus, it actually serves to bring down the value of highly-scored reviews to me.

It was argued by someone earlier (sorry, I've forgotten who) that this is OK as the Mac gets fewer poor titles released than the PC side. I disagree. A site that reviews Mac games should normalize its ratings on the based on the population of Mac games, not some wider one. In other words, I think Mac games under review should be compared to all other games that are available for the Mac, rather than all games possible. Why should I care if a game rates a 9.5 because there is a sea of 3.5 stuff available only for, say, Windows, whereas when compared to what is on offer for the Mac specifically, it might only rate a 6.5?

In my opinion, of course.

#59 George the Flea

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 09:29 PM

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I don't have a big beef myself with IMG's reviews, mostly because I understand they're written on a volunteer basis, and I've never bought a game based solely on them anyway.

Quote

Did I suggest that he rewrite reviews?  No.  Point I'm trying to make is that if the problem is that the writers are all horrible, then someone who can write (such as Gafgarion or you) shouldn't use lame excuses for why they aren't willing to take the time to contribute and make the whole thing better.
[emphasis mine]

When I read that paragraph, it sure sounds like you're suggesting if he doesn't like the reviews, that he should write some himself. Perhaps you could clarify what you mean if I have misunderstood you. Just because he doesn't write reviews doesn't mean he isn't entitled to giving his opinion of them, as are you and I.

You're quite right.  I am suggesting that if he thinks the writing staff is so horrible that he should write reviews.  My beef is that Gafgarion has been ranking on review writers as a whole, giving few examples (all but one of which are very big name games, thus making them even more difficult to review because of all the hype) and offering absolutely no constructive criticism.  After asserting the utter incompetence of all writers affiliated with IMG, he then asserted that he isn't competent to write reviews because he's only taken a few journalism classes.  He's fully entitled to his opinion, but when that opinion is merely unconstructive flaming I feel fully vindicated in challenging his viewpoint.  Analogies he offered to defend his stance (such as asking why you don't apply to Microsoft to make their OS better since you don't like it) are ridiculous because they are similar in type but not in scope; I was trying to point out that it is well within the realm of possibility for him to write for IMG based on his skill at writing (observable in every post he makes).

Hope that makes sense.

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It was argued by someone earlier (sorry, I've forgotten who) that this is OK as the Mac gets fewer poor titles released than the PC side.  I disagree. A site that reviews Mac games should normalize its ratings on the based on the population of Mac games, not some wider one. In other words, I think Mac games under review should be compared to all other games that are available for the Mac, rather than all games possible. Why should I care if a game rates a 9.5 because there is a sea of 3.5 stuff available only for, say, Windows, whereas when compared to what is on offer for the Mac specifically, it might only rate a 6.5?

That was actually me, too.  :-)

It's a tough subject.  Part of the problem is that the overall score for any game is the average of the other scores.  This puts reviewers in a tough spot because sometimes a game deserves a score that isn't necessary a mathematical result of its other scores.  This can go both ways, such as a game that has average or worse sound, but is still a great game (and deserves a better score, thus potentially forcing the reviewer to manipulate scores somewhat) or for a game that has really well done parts (say great graphics and sound), but just isn't that great a game.

There's also past precedent to deal with.  Say you're reviewing a game, and you really liked it and are trying to decide what scores it deserves.  You take a peek at the IMG archives and notice that similar games, or games with similar quality of components, have received really good scores.  Do you rate the game lower than past games, thus implicitly saying it's worse (even if it is better)?  Or do you say to yourself, "Well, I suppose it deserves another point in category X"?

I actually agree with you that it would be way nicer if game reviews reflected the great variation a little better.  Having the ability for community members to add their own reviews is helpful, but I'm not sure it's enough.  On the other hand, it would be incredibly difficult to normalize the ratings, especially now after IMG has been running for several years.

I have faith that IMG is working as hard as they can to make the reviews and such as fair and accurate as possible.  Judging by the number of calls for writers recently (there's been two or more in the past year or so) I would say that the IMG staff is probably still getting into the flow of things.

The moral of the story: constructive criticism is good.  Otherwise, I turn into a rampaging (not to mention verbose) IMG-supporting maniac.  :-D
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#60 George the Flea

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 09:36 PM

Slightly more on topic:

I think there are definitely too many categories, Tuncer, but it's probably worth waiting a couple weeks to see what's posted in and what's not before deciding what to cut (pretty sure you're already doing this, but what the heck, I like to type).

Personally, I don't really see the point for any companies forum beyond a general one (since companies are definitely a pertinent topic, but having specific ones is overkill).  I also preferred "OS X" as the name to the current "Apple Software" forum.  "Shareware" deserves a chance (but I'm biased because I love shareware and will regularly visit that forum), "Shooters" is a good idea (minus "first person" in the subtitle), and "Action & Arcade" and "Racing & Sports" seem pretty pointless to me, mainly because I would never use them myself.

As someone else suggested, the feedback forums should definitely be collapsed into one.

And lastly, you should update the system to PHPBB 2.0.11 because 2.0.6 is ancient and probably not particularly secure.
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