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Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - Fluid Mantis - 2011-03-20

[Image: olsuksig.png]

This is an anime board based on the anime Outlaw Star, though all anime fans are welcome. The main site uses WordPress, though the forums of course run MyBB. I'm also soon going to complete (to a good stage) the gallery section which runs TinyWebGallery, and the wiki which runs MediaWiki.

The forum's default skin is The Cure, modified by myself with a new colour scheme and random banner image rotation. It has a couple of other themes which can be chosen using the theme selector at the bottom. The forum makes good use of NewPoints and My Achievements. I have added custom ranks, achievements, and items that can be purchased at the item shop.

Unfortunately, I am currently administrating the forum as a one-man team so it is difficult to work on every other aspect of the site and take care of the little things, like achievements, ranks, etc. But I am going to work on more icons soon. Smile The pixel art can be a little fun even if I'm not brilliant at it. The forum is not very popular, but I am happy with it so far. It's a bit like a small family and I've got to know quite a few members. It's my first experience as an administrator, and quite a thrilling experience it is.


RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - Solidus - 2011-03-20

You've forgotten the most crucial part of your post. http:// ???


RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - Fluid Mantis - 2011-03-20

You'll find the image has a hyperlink.


RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - Solidus - 2011-03-20

I didn't see the image first time around.
Anyway, I like the main site.
Your forum has some good content, although I don't like the theme. It's used far too often.


RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - Fluid Mantis - 2011-03-20

Thanks for the feedback. I agree that it's overused, though my members haven't raised an issue with it so far. The theme has only been given praise. I do take note of any comments though, and I'll look into a new theme in the summer. Original themes cost money, and I've spent a lot of money on plugins. Functionality or aesthetics? That's a tough one.


RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - MadComp - 2011-09-08

I've seen your site and I have to say I really like it. I might sign up for the site, even though I've never heard of that anime - I'm more along the lines of Dragon Ball, YuGiOh, One Piece, etc. As a fellow forum admin, let me give you a piece of advice on staff: friends can make great staff members! Wink


RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - Crayo - 2011-09-08

I disagree actually. I don't think the main site is attractive, the colors don't match in my opinion. I think some sort of template or more advanced coding would make it a lot better. As for the forum, I think there could be some more content posted in the relevant section, however, at least it does have content and that's good. I agree with Solidus, it does need a new theme. If you can't customize a theme yourself, try installing a rare one or paying someone for a custom one. It always helps forums.




RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - kavin - 2011-09-08

(2011-09-08, 05:17 PM)Anxiety Wrote: I disagree actually. I don't think the main site is attractive, the colors don't match in my opinion. I think some sort of template or more advanced coding would make it a lot better. As for the forum, I think there could be some more content posted in the relevant section, however, at least it does have content and that's good. I agree with Solidus, it does need a new theme. If you can't customize a theme yourself, try installing a rare one or paying someone for a custom one. It always helps forums.

I agree with Anxiety. You should concentrate of color scheme of Homepage.
You have five colors like Blue, violet, red, dark red, black. Try concentrating on 1 main color instead of two (red and blue). Also customize MyBB theme as others said.

Apart from that everything seems fine. I like the content in your Forum. Good luck. Smile


RE: Outlaw Star UK - Anime Board - Fluid Mantis - 2011-10-01

Hi, I've just seen these new posts. To be honest, I didn't expect anyone else to post in this. Thank you for your feedback. I'm trying to find ways to change how I administrate my site and the forum. Most importantly rather than the theme, I need to add some interesting articles, but that's a different topic entirely. (Writing a lot of articles takes a lot of time though which can make it really difficult to manage creating a gallery, a wiki, appearance changes, threads on the forum, and new features. Undecided)

(2011-09-08, 03:42 AM)MadComp Wrote: I've seen your site and I have to say I really like it. I might sign up for the site, even though I've never heard of that anime - I'm more along the lines of Dragon Ball, YuGiOh, One Piece, etc. As a fellow forum admin, let me give you a piece of advice on staff: friends can make great staff members! Wink

Thanks, I appreciate your kind words. You might enjoy Outlaw Star since it was a Toonami show and was broadcast in many countries around the time Dragon Ball Z was. An interesting trivia fact, though somewhat irrelevant, is that Outlaw Star's creator—Takehiko Ito—eventually moved on to work on Yu-Gi-Oh!. I definitely agree with your advice. A friend you're in regular contact with would make a great co-admin or moderator.

Unfortunately, I don't really know any who have a keen interest in Outlaw Star. I've hired staff by advertising a position, but one of them hasn't really done anything at all. I guess instead of advertising a moderation position, since the forum has pretty low activity lately, I should advertise it simply as a "staff" position that would involve writing articles about Outlaw Star and related series (a content creator) as well as moderation. It's too bad not many people are willing to devote the time for that.

This is my first time administrating a site. I guess you can't expect it to be a clear path ahead, can you? I'm learning a lot from this experience though. I'm learning that in order to make a niche forum work, ultimately, it's down to you to totally work your lime off as an initial (and continual, to a lesser extent) investment to generate interest. You could call that a general rule of thumb for all sites. I guess it is, but with a narrow topic like this, there isn't as much to write about. But the passion's there, so I'll keep on tryin'. Wink



(2011-09-08, 05:17 PM)Anxiety Wrote: I disagree actually. I don't think the main site is attractive, the colors don't match in my opinion. I think some sort of template or more advanced coding would make it a lot better. As for the forum, I think there could be some more content posted in the relevant section, however, at least it does have content and that's good. I agree with Solidus, it does need a new theme. If you can't customize a theme yourself, try installing a rare one or paying someone for a custom one. It always helps forums.

(2011-09-08, 06:01 PM)kavin Wrote: I agree with Anxiety. You should concentrate of color scheme of Homepage. You have five colors like Blue, violet, red, dark red, black. Try concentrating on 1 main color instead of two (red and blue). Also customize MyBB theme as others said.

Apart from that everything seems fine. I like the content in your Forum. Good luck. Smile

Grateful for the constructive criticism. Unfortunately, my hands are tied financially currently, but I agree; a new theme would help. I've actually had mixed views on the theme. Some really liked it. Some hated it. The main criticism raised was that the colours of the main site and forum don't match. Most criticism was aimed at the main site. Those who didn't like the forum theme said it's "used too often" or is "too generic". That's a very valid point, but I've used the internet and forums for a long time. Honestly, I hadn't seen or noticed many themes like The Cure before.

With regard to the main site, most of the positive comments came from those who are fans of Outlaw Star. I'll explain this soon, though as they say, a picture speaks a thousand words. The main site uses a WordPress theme called Atahualpa. (Yes, I know, they chose a terrible name.) The idea behind this theme is that it's very customisable through its own interface, so even non-coders like me can make it look unique. I'll agree that hiring a designer to create a sleeker theme would probably generate greater interest. When I can, I'll look into this.

[Image: outlawstar.jpg]

This is the Outlaw Star, the ship the main character Gene Starwind pilots in the series. Some extra images, some of which aren't of the ship but illustrate my point:

http://lordharshmage.deviantart.com/art/Outlaw-Star-Mod-WIP-52162660
http://browse.deviantart.com/?qh=&section=&global=1&q=outlaw+star#/ds3jv6
http://browse.deviantart.com/?q=outlaw%20star&order=9&offset=264#/d236mur
http://cdn1.iofferphoto.com/img/item/116/360/063/zIITv8TRMUOCbBq.jpg
http://animephase.com/wp-content/uploads/outlaw-star-dubbed.jpg
http://malindachan.deviantart.com/art/Gene-and-Melfina-Hand-in-Hand-133186378

You should have noticed a pattern here. The show is very colourful and has a positive theme of chasing your desires. The colours red, blue and yellow are emphasised. On the ship itself, the primary colour is red, the secondary blue, and the tertiary yellow. I tried to reflect this to the best of my ability in these themes. I am not a coder. I can produce half-decent graphics, but I do not have the programming knowledge to create a theme from them. To Outlaw Star fans, though the themes aren't the best in the world, the effort to produce something that reflects Outlaw Star's style has been recognised and I've been praised for that.

On the main site, as you'll notice the body content has a red background, the side/header blue, and the header border yellow. On the forum the primary colour is blue. Originally, The Cure was wholly blue, but I did what I could to the best of my ability to make it match Outlaw Star's style. I do feel a little reluctant to change the forum's main theme, in part because I've received a lot of good comments about it, secondly because the theme is easily changed (theme changer box at the bottom, and there are two other themes), and finally because I've spent countless hours creating sixteen (probably more to come) unique header images which change on every refresh.

So I hope you can see where I'm coming from here. Now you can see that I was following a particular colour scheme, would you recommend I wait until I have the money to hire somebody who can create something more attractive? (Particularly for the main site.) Marketing and content creation cost time and money, and there's a limit to how much money you can spend on something that's labour of love when there's no profitability (or even earning a dime back) for you. (The advertisements are part of a contract with the domain holder which I bought for a high cost.) I'll hire a theme creator eventually, but I need to create a budget plan first.

Sorry if my post was a little long-winded. Toungue I seldom get an opportunity to receive great advice from experienced admins.

Cheers. Smile