march 28th check out the new event! A small little springtime event to bring some spark if you're interested!
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july 1st we're open! welcome! we hope you guys are as excited as we are to finally be here on the new site. you can check out our opening announcement to find out the gist of all our features. if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. here's to a great future! ♥
the skin was created by ulla specifically for pixel perfect and should not be copied, used as a base, or emulated under any circumstances. all of the content (graphics, templates, tutorials, etc.) belong to their respective owners. most site graphics are done by pixiv artist tofuvi. site banner by pixiv id 3490137
I hope this won't sting too bad, but I am looking for multiple reviews if possible. Didn't see a form anywhere, so I am flowing freely here.
After running for a year and detailing things as I went along as opposed to having things ready the day we opened it has been a long journey, but ultimately it feels like a successful one. We all know what a lul feels like, but being someone who has never roleplayed on a forum that I didn't create understanding the community is probably tricky, and I wonder if I am missing one simple big secret that will have people instantly like my sight more. I am not saying that I am making a site just for other people, but I do want to know if I have any jarring things that would make people run away.
With that said, help me do better. I would appreciate it. I look forward to your responses.
Hope you don't mind me dropping in a bit late! I've been wanting to review your site for you for awhile, I've just been too busy to sit down and do it.
So first impressions! I really like the banner image. I really like the rest of the skin. However, they don't really go together. It think it's totally possible to have a dark skin with a light banner, especially in a style like this where the light banner's just at the top, but I think it would make the design a bit more cohesive if you put some of the colors from the banner into the rest of the skin. That nice yellow would make a good link color, for example. I don't think you even need to get rid of all the purple in the rest of the skin, doubly so if you incorporate a little bit of purple into the banner somehow. The rest of the front page looks nice. The skin is easy to follow, I can find everything pretty well, and easy to read, but still has enough interesting stuff going on to make it unique.
The only other thing that stood out to me on the main page were the links in your "Character Database" board description. Your skin is very angular with clearly defined borders, so having the outer glow around the text just looked strange to me. But more importantly, I couldn't actually tell they were links at first. At first I though they were just bits of text you really wanted to emphasize because they weren't the same color as the rest of your links, even if they were a little different. This is a bit harder to fix, especially if you keep the purple links, because I don't think that'll necessarily be enough to make them stand out. Making them look more like buttons might do the trick though. Maybe style them like the three buttons you have right under the banner?
Now that I'm clicking around I'm seeing that you have multiple banners depending on the page. That's pretty neat! It does make doing what I suggested above more difficult though. If you're able, putting some purple into the banners should do about the same thing though.
I wasn't sure how I felt about basic navigation being in a dropdown at first, but I think you make it work well. The places that people want to get to quickly (eg the home page) and the nav tree are easily accessible at all times and the dropdown is only for less commonly visited places. This works well, navigating the site itself has been nice and easy. The redundancy in getting to the home page means that there'll be a link wherever you are, and the numerous Discord links make it seem really unlikely that people will miss it. With as many as there are, I have a hard time believing that people won't be able to find at least one of them, so everyone should be able to join your OOC community just fine. Info topics are also easy to find.
So enough rambling about looks! Let's get into the info.
I'm old fashioned and started RPing before people started putting fancy quick links everywhere, so I went straight for your information board rather than using the quicklinks at the top. I think I'm an outlier there, so it's not too important, but I went straight for the thread called "Basic Information" and I thought you had made a mistake because there was nothing there. It look me like a minute to realize that the only thing in there was a link because there was no indication that this was a link. All the other links so far had been purple, and the text in there was about the same color as what you've been using for just basic text so far. I thought you just had a title with nothing in it for a moment. Consistency is important in skins because users are lazy and really don't like to think, so making them the same color as your other links will make it more clear that it's a link.
The introduction in your basic info is good enough and does a nice enough job at making you look friendly. The emote might be pushing it a little though, as those are generally a bit out of place in documentation. The font is a bit stark too. You have no idea how much I appreciate that your site has really good contrast, but is that pure white on close to black? It makes it a little bit hard to look at for long periods of time. I really, really light gray generally works better for this kind of thing. If you're worried about whether your contrast is still contrasty enough after darkening it a little, this is a really good resource for testing it. Speaking of contrast, your skin is really dark, but then you suddenly have this big white box right in the middle of it. That hurt my eyes a little while I was trying to read and actually made the text hard to read despite being so big. It was just a bit too much for my eyes. If you want it to stand out, using a lighter color is a reasonable way to do it, but since you have a dark skin it should still be on the darker side. Probably dark enough that you'd still want to use white text, else it just stands out too much and circles back around to being hard to read.
Now that I'm scrolling down and getting into the meat of your documentation, a lot of what I said above doesn't seem to apply. Once I get into the terms and what-not that font color is so much easier to read and I don't have to strain my eyes at all. You even made it big with good line height and it looks great.
I've been doing this largely stream of consciousness style, but I think I'm going to have to read all the info before I comment too much on it. Reading through the terms, the one thing that confused me was that you said that Orphans are every living species in the world, then under food say that there's plant-based food and everything else is, or was caused by, Orphans. Are there ways for life to come to be that wouldn't be considered an Orphan? If so, then changing that first definition to "most living things" instead of "all living things" should make this less confusing.
Going into introduction now, and it's back to that tiny, really bright font. The font in your terms section looks so good you might as well use it for everything.
Then I went into the rules and the font was completely different again. This time smaller an the nice color from the terms, and then bold and purple further down. Making all of these consistent will make the documentation easier to read, especially since the text style from the terms is by far the easiest of the text I've seen so far to read. Seriously, I think you nailed in that section and should apply it to all your other sections.
This part of the rules is a bit patronizing. Just state your rules, there's no reason to act like you're having a conversation with the reader. This is documentation, not Discord:
With that being said, we have two versions of our rules, a version that is simple and upfront about the main ideas. Then we have our big book of rules. We encourage you to read atleast one version. Does that sound like a deal? Good!
In the detailed version, what are those numbers in the table of contents? Are they supposed to be page numbers? Not necessary for the web and just confusing if that's the case because the web doesn't have pages. The links to go to the detailed section are nice though.
Rules seem fair. None of them seem super outlandish, even if they're a bit uncommon.
Timeline was a pretty great read.
I physically cannot read the bottom part of your setting text. Map looks nice, but there's no labels, so I have no idea what anything means.
I can't read most of the labels on the zoomed in map in your "World Map" section. I can read the big ones, but not the small black ones.
I'm so sorry, but I don't have time to read all your documentation. ;_; There's just so much of it. You do a good job of making it clear what each section is about so new players can skim through everything and really focus on the parts that are relevant to the kind of character they want to make if they already have something in mind. There is a whole ton of information, but I haven't been super overwhelmed by it and it's all been written pretty well. There's no way anyone's going to remember all of the names you have listed, but the way the documentation is written makes it look like you expect that, so it's probably okay, and it's clear you're doing your best to keep things short while still giving people the information they need to actually make a character in this world. I think you managed to strike the balance even though I'm telling you I don't have time to read it all here. There's not much you can do when you're making an entirely new universe. I'm just stopping here so I make sure I have enough time to look through your character creation process.
So I took a look at all the ways I might look to submit a character. You had it in the quicklinks, so I checked there, I also noticed it while reading the documentation, so I looked there, and I looked at the actual character database. They all go to the same place, so it's pretty easy to find where you're supposed to start at least.
I can't copy the google doc here, so I'm going to assume the alternate template is about the same. It was easy to find, though I'm not quite sure where it put it? Is that what the characters awaiting approval link is for? I'm assuming so because nothing else makes sense, but it might be worth making that a little more clear so there's no room for error. Then what do I do when I'm done? How do I let staff know? I don't see that process documented anywhere.
The character sheet itself seems straightforward enough. Reading through it, it seems like the only thing you have strong expectations for is the history and everything else can be as light or as detailed as the person wants. Is that correct? If it's not, then you might need to explain a bit more.
Phew, sorry I couldn't read through all of your documentation or give everything a quick grammar check. The setting seems pretty neat and I don't think it's too complicated or anything. Lots of lore just scares a lot of people off and there's not much you can do about. I think you should stick with what you have and give the people that really like more detailed settings a nice place to call home. I hope all that was helpful, good luck with your site!
To keep the forum clean and so people know that all threads in certain areas are current and that the OP is likely to still have interest, we archive threads that haven't gotten posts for 2 weeks. This thread is being archived for that reason. If you would like this thread reopened, contact a staff member.