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Dystopia Pro Revitalization Project

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4:03 pm
July 15, 2017

cooler
Member

posts 80

1
Afternoon everyone,
     For those of you who may not know me, my name is cooler and I have worked with John (dystopia) on and off for the last decade or so starting on MSN Groups. I have always been passionate about message board role playing and lately I've had an urge to do ever I can to help bring it back. I'm my opinion, two things heavily contributed to the downfall of message board role playing.
     The first was definitely the downfall of MSN Groups. However, what brought down groups? It was a combination of factors that caused activity to drop. One was that there was not enough new members joining MSN Groups anymore. This added with the current population ageing had a large impact on activity falling. People started getting older and busier and moved on. This created a huge drop in activity as far too many people were leaving a opposed to joining. Eventually, Microsoft made the decision to close groups down and move in a different direction.
     Second, online video games. During the Golden Age of groups a lot of people were still on a dial up connection and video games were not nearly as popular let online games. However, as we all know, internet became faster and video games became more popular and even more socially acceptable. World of WarCraft was released and many people preferred playing with others this way as opposed to message boards. Slowly, the amount of people role playing declined and those who stayed became less active.
     So, what can we do to combat this and bring in more activity? The first step obviously is to have active leadership here, something that John and I have talked about and will do what we can to become active. Then, we need places to for players to role play. However, we are few in number and although we have several good RPGs that we could open and run, doing so would result in failure as we could not manage them all. To remedy this, we have adopted a simple motto, simplicity and automation. Make the groups more simple and automate ad much as we can, which would allow a small amount of people to run multiple groups. If we can launch multiple groups simultaneously, we then give players more choices and places to be active and hopefully give a reason for people to come here and join or make their own groups.
     Finally, for those of you that are here, your help is needed if you believe in our goal. The best thing we can all do, is become as active as we can and engage in conversations here on the boards or create your own groups or volunteer your assistance to finish a group we already have started.

Cooler.

9:11 pm
July 15, 2017

dystopia
Admin

posts 736

2

Post edited 1:12 am – July 16, 2017 by dystopia


Alright, so as we discussed earlier if we're going to seriously push for getting this place going again there are some things we'll have to do first, and some things we'll have to do at some point later after the most important tasks. I'm going to list what I can think of off the top of my head.

1. General Sitewide Code/Design Cleanup: I don't want to ditch the design, that's unneeded but I would like to sorta go in and recode some of the important pages and just basically make them work better. Some examples: The homepage as of now can only hold six RPG recent topics, just because it wasn't how it was originally meant to be used. I can easily fix that with some basic working on the base container so it can hold 9 or 12, etc. Also I'd like to rework the directory some, though I need to think about this one a little more.
 
2. Member's Info: Like back on MSN Groups where it listed all the groups you were a member of. I sorta already laid the framework for this in the past, I'd just like a place where it shows how many posts you've done on each RP, as well as quick links to change your avatar and stuff like that all in one place. Ideally it would down the road connect to a user database using Chimera, social network lite. 
 
3. The RPGS: My thoughts are we need to pick one or two RPGs to start with, make changes that need to be made, implement automation, etc. Right now on Dyspro I think I have 4 fully complete RPGs + Griff's KH site, so 5 in all. Those are Fortress, Biohazard, Chrono Trigger, Project Seeds, and War of Hearts. As far as implementing Chimera TPS would probably be the easiest, as much of what has been down with the engine is done for Jupiter Jazz which uses basically all the same systems and same layout as TPS.

4. Networking: The way to get people here is to make Dyspro and RPG network, where people can come and list their own RPGs in a directory and stay for community support and chat. We network, and we bring in people and if even just 5-10% of the people that come to drop some links and info in hang around we'd still grow pretty well from that.

10:09 pm
July 15, 2017

cooler
Member

posts 80

3
Created topics based off of some of our conversations when it comes to coming up with ideas for engaging the community and bringing in new members.

1) Definitely agree here. When I'm on my PC tomorrow, I'll go around clicking on all kinds of links and see if I can break things and how easy it is too navigate or find the information I'm looking for. I think a good idea for the home page could be if it listed the current most active RPGs instead of just a strict 9-12 that we have to rotate so often.

2) I like this idea, I was actually trying to figure out how to leave some groups earlier today.

3) Agreed. As we discussed, Insanity should be a good place to really work out Chimera Engine due to it's simplicity. Again, I want to see how much I can get done next week before I fully commit to it. As for which RPGs we clean up first, I think we really to think about what has the most appeal.

4) Created a topic for this.

1:05 pm
July 16, 2017

dystopia
Admin

posts 736

4
I can break the homepage up into sections as it was originally intended again, that way we can have some areas for our network as well as an area for the RPGs we host. I can pull out the old code for the directory I had on CPN which ranked the groups based on activity and cannibalize it some to put it into use here. I will have to let the design stuff bounce around in the ole' noggin for awhile though, figure out how I want to change the look and whatnot before I go in and work on the container code and stuff.

2:01 am
July 17, 2017

dystopia
Admin

posts 736

5
I've been working conceptually tonight on some of the changes that need to take place with the site structure itself to make it more of a community than just a collection of RP boards. The first thing that will entail is the before mentioned restructuring of the homepage. Here's a link to the original concept for the layout I'm using http://dystopiapro.com/images/rpgs2.jpg which is probably what I will take it back closer too. What we use a homepage now I want to kind of merge into the directory so each listing there has recent posts and stuff like that. The homepage will go back to being a gateway into the site, though I will figure out ways to add some links to our biggest RPs and hot topics to the community forums and new additions to the network. We will also need to restructure the “community” area, which as of now is just these forums. I think just setting it up as a blog style page with updates and gateway links to all of the other areas, hot topics, top RPGs, etc sorta our take on the cpn main http://dystopiapro.com/images/cpn2.jpg
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