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Subject: Suggestion: Moderator for "Board Game Design" rss

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Shanen Opolis
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I don't really like the current layout. I'm new here, so I don't think I'm bringing any bias in, just casual observation.

Board Game Design
"Post articles related to designing and developing board games."
>> Everything gets posted here. Everything! I think this is a problem.

Design Contests
"Post board game design contests here."
>> I don't visit this forum often, but when I do, it looks like it's doing its job, I wouldn't change it.

Board Game Art and Graphic Design
"Post articles related to the artwork and graphic design of games."
>> This forum is mostly artists looking for work, and vice versa.

Design Theory
"General design ideas can be discussed here."
>> Doesn't seem to be used. Can probably go.

Design Queries and Problems
"Post specific questions regarding your current design here."
>> I don't understand how this is really different than the Theory forum, and why there needs to be two different ones. They are both vacant.

Works in Progress
"Tell about the current progress of your design here."
>> All well and good in concept, but people usually discuss their WIP to get feedback and advice on particular subjects, and so visit other forums with that purpose.

Seeking Play Testers
"Post requests for play testers here."
>> Again, an empty forum that conflicts with other topics. Couldn't playtester requests go in the WIP forum? Or in the Theory or Query forum in order to test new theories?

Here's how I think it should be organized:
1) Do away with the general forum. Everyone just puts everything there, and it doesn't help to fix anything.
2) Create boards based on stages of game design, allowing people to lurk progressively as they work on their own game:
>> A) Development, Mechanics and Concepts
>> B) Art, Design, and Theme
>> C) Production, Manufacturing, and Playtesting
>> D) Marketing, Funding, and Distribution
3) Keep the contests forum, because it serves a purpose.
4) Add one additional forum to act as a sort of classified ad area. Where you can be an artist looking for work, or a designer looking for an artist, or announcing your new game, whatever.
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Jake Staines
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Shanenopolis wrote:

1) Do away with the general forum. Everyone just puts everything there, and it doesn't help to fix anything.


Then what do you do with the thousands of posts in that forum? Moving them into other, appropriate categories would be an amazingly huge job that you can't ask anyone to do. Deleting them would be unthinkable. Locking them so that nobody can post in them any more would be pretty weird for those threads which are still current, and would either curtail conversation (a bad thing to do in a discussion forum) or at least damage conversation (still a bad thing) as the conversation starts again somewhere else with no way to link the two (because the original is locked) and no history of conversation.

Personally, I think that getting rid of the current general-purpose forum is a bad idea.

Shanenopolis wrote:

2) Create boards based on stages of game design


I also think that this is counter-productive, for three big reasons.

1) It allows for no continuity between the posts for a single game as it moves through the various stages of development. Different threads would need to be started in different forums in order to discuss the different stages.

2) The whole problem that the game-design forums have at the moment is that nobody uses most of them because a load of extra forums were thoughtlessly created and nobody is used to them existing yet. The solution to too many forums is not to add more forums!

3) The whole point - the starting motivation - of the last changes to the forum structure was that there were two main populations interested in the board-game-design forums; one was interested in discussing design problems in general, the other was interested in talking about their work-in-progress game, and the first population was annoyed that their forum has been taken over by the second population. Your proposal would just create four forums which were all filled with people's WIP games, which doesn't resolve the original grievance at all.







My proposal would be simply:

- Keep the general Board Game Design (root) forum

- Collapse Design Theory & Design Questions into Board Game Design and move all posts there en masse. These forums really have no separate reason to exist - not just from each other but from the general forum. They don't serve different audiences or purposes.

- Collapse Seeking Playtesters into the Works in Progress forum: again, these don't serve separate audiences. The only real benefit I've seen anyone suggest that Seeking Playtesters has is that it indicates that a game is ready to be playtested, but it's also not trafficked much by people actually doing playtesting, so it doesn't really help anyone much.

- Add an "Artist Portfolios" forum underneath Board Game Art and Design, for all those otherwise-spam posts which make Art and Design useless for anyone actually wanting to talk about art and design. Treat those posts as spam in the Art and Design forum.

- Post a Sticky/Pinned topic in the general Board Game Design forum explaining the changes and making it clear that WIPs should go in the WIP forum, and in the Art and Design forum explaining that portfolio threads belong in the Portfolio forum. The main problem that the last restructuring had, quite aside from nobody knowing which of the five forums to post in, was that nobody knew the restructuring had occurred at all!
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Eric Etkin
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Less is more. Provided you maintain some reasonable distinction in a few categories.

Bichatse wrote:

My proposal would be simply:

- Keep the general Board Game Design (root) forum

- Collapse Design Theory & Design Questions into Board Game Design and move all posts there en masse. These forums really have no separate reason to exist - not just from each other but from the general forum. They don't serve different audiences or purposes.

- Collapse Seeking Playtesters into the Works in Progress forum: again, these don't serve separate audiences. The only real benefit I've seen anyone suggest that Seeking Playtesters has is that it indicates that a game is ready to be playtested, but it's also not trafficked much by people actually doing playtesting, so it doesn't really help anyone much.

- Add an "Artist Portfolios" forum underneath Board Game Art and Design, for all those otherwise-spam posts which make Art and Design useless for anyone actually wanting to talk about art and design. Treat those posts as spam in the Art and Design forum.

- Post a Sticky/Pinned topic in the general Board Game Design forum explaining the changes and making it clear that WIPs should go in the WIP forum, and in the Art and Design forum explaining that portfolio threads belong in the Portfolio forum. The main problem that the last restructuring had, quite aside from nobody knowing which of the five forums to post in, was that nobody knew the restructuring had occurred at all!


These would be my suggestions as well, with the possible exception to "seeking play testers," as I really feel that is more of a "general gaming" topic, and if non-designers mostly don't peruse the BGD forums, you're losing out on most of your target reader.

Personally, I'd just remove the "seeking play tester" topic, rather than consolidate it with WIP.

So for me:

- Keep the general Board Game Design (root) forum

- Collapse Design Theory & Design Questions into Board Game Design and move all posts there en masse.

- Eliminate Seeking Playtesters, and move existing to General forum.

- Add an "Artist Portfolios and Work for Hire" forum underneath Board Game Art and Design.

Or better still, remove it from BGD entirely to eliminate confusion or laziness... It's functioning more like a "press release" than a design topic, anyway.

- Post a Sticky/Pinned topic in the general Board Game Design forum explaining the changes

So...

Board Game Design (legacy + theory and design)
Board Game WIP (posts about specific WIP games)
Board Game Art and Graphic Design (art theory and design)

Artist Portfolios and Work for Hire - Moved to its own forum, possibly below "Press Releases."

Seeking Playtesters - Moved to Sub-General
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Jake Staines
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MOTHDevil wrote:

Personally, I'd just remove the "seeking play tester" topic, rather than consolidate it with WIP.


My thinking there, for what it's worth, is simply:

- If you remove a forum you need to put the posts somewhere,
and
- pretty much every game designer with a work-in-progress game wants playtesters!
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Eric Etkin
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Bichatse wrote:
MOTHDevil wrote:

Personally, I'd just remove the "seeking play tester" topic, rather than consolidate it with WIP.


My thinking there, for what it's worth, is simply:

- If you remove a forum you need to put the posts somewhere,
and
- pretty much every game designer with a work-in-progress game wants playtesters!


Absolutely. But unfortunately, this doesn't correspond to where the potential playtesters are hanging out.

Really, in my mind, this is tow different things:

Gamers willing to playtest, purely from a player perspective.

Playtesters who are also designers, and therefore more inclined to trade ideas and/or give a different type/level of feedback.

To me, it's sort of the difference between screening a rough cut of your movie to other directors vs. screening your movie to an average sample of your targeted audience.

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Matt Pierce
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MOTHDevil wrote:



Board Game Design (legacy + theory and design)
Board Game WIP (posts about specific WIP games)
Board Game Art and Graphic Design (art theory and design)

Artist Portfolios and Work for Hire - Moved to its own forum, possibly below "Press Releases."

Seeking Playtesters - Moved to Sub-General


Seconding this one. Makes sense to me, and I'd love to have a place to talk about graphics without having to sift through portfolio threads.
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Eric Etkin
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sakket wrote:
MOTHDevil wrote:



Board Game Design (legacy + theory and design)
Board Game WIP (posts about specific WIP games)
Board Game Art and Graphic Design (art theory and design)

Artist Portfolios and Work for Hire - Moved to its own forum, possibly below "Press Releases."

Seeking Playtesters - Moved to Sub-General


Seconding this one. Makes sense to me, and I'd love to have a place to talk about graphics without having to sift through portfolio threads.


Actually... now that I'm thinking about it, it seems like we could use a general "Work for Hire" forum, which would be subdivided maybe into "help wanted" and "available talent."
 
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Eric Etkin
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MicroStack Games wrote:
What about Design Contests?


Personally, I'd move those back within BGD main. You'd have the main contest thread there, and all related entries in the WIP forum.
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John "Omega" Williams
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Part of the problem is not the subforums themselves...

The problem is the wording of what should go IN those sub forums.

As it stands it seems to be confusing too many people and looking like it is not worth using a subforum for risk of being in the wrong one. etc.

Questions and Theory I agree can be merged. They end up being about the same thing in the end.
 
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Daniel J Isom
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MOTHDevil wrote:

Less is more. Provided you maintain some reasonable distinction in a few categories.

Board Game Design (legacy + theory and design)
Board Game WIP (posts about specific WIP games)
Board Game Art and Graphic Design (art theory and design)

Artist Portfolios and Work for Hire - Moved to its own forum, possibly below "Press Releases."

Seeking Playtesters - Moved to Sub-General



I think this is nearly perfect. I do think Seeking Playtesters topics should be in the WIP forum because games needing playtesters clearly are works in progress since they aren't complete.

As for needing a Mod or Admin for the design forums, I think it's an interesting idea but having an admin for a specific section of the forums ins't something BGG has done before. I feel like the forum mods do a good job of moving things and enforcing the rules as long as we all do our due diligence to flag the needed items.
 
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