New Homepage


2018-10-05

The homepage needed a disruptive change, it is was slowing evolving since the beginning and it was trying to show many parts of UVL, but still lacking to show the real search potential.

Most of the old homepage is actually gone. Site stats, the news, tags, characters... Something will be back better than before, some not.

The final objective is to let users discover games in a fast way, sliding the years and seeing some data update in real time should be interesting.
Feedback is welcome as usual, this may not please to anyone, but the homepage is aimed to random users that just want to discover video games, then letting them to dig deeper with powerful search pages.

This is a first step, far from perfect, it has many ways to expand, but is a solid basis to start.

2018-10-05
WTF. Ok, after my initial "shock" I found that when I click on "videogames" in the bottom left corner I get to the old "Advanced Search". I thought this was gone. Actually thats the first thing I would need back on the very homepage. Another useful thing that is gone is the fact that you could see on the homepage whether a forum post was new or not. No longer possible. I am still a bit speechless and will definitely comment more on it in the future.

2018-10-05
To access the search on the old homepage, you could use the "menu" (still there), the search widget always visible on the top of the page, and the search field just below the welcome text.
Which one are you referring to ?

2018-10-05
Now I see the search field on the top of the screen. Thanks for adding it. In Internet Explorer the slider is not visible/workable for me.

2018-10-05
I should have fixed the sliders on IE.
Thanks for all the feedback.

2018-10-06
After a night of sleep and a few reality checks some more input and opinion from me:

[BUGS]
- Little Typo on homepage: Annivesaries -> Anniversaries

##############

[OPINION: THE GOOD]

First what elements I did not like on the previous homepage and what I am glad about that they are gone:

- "Other news" (Looked strangely formatted and the few news items where old and extremely niche. To keep this interesting and fresh we do not have the manpower.)

- "Tags" (While an important part of the site it looked like some misplaced garbled text wall on a clean homepage)

- "Featured group", again an interesting concept but this needed constant input to be fresh and we don't have the manpower. Additionally I don't like elements like animated gifs on a homepage. Having princess peach pointing a finger to me in a constant loop was sort of eerie.

- The general idea to bring users to browse games and explore the database is good. It is in line in what I see the purpose of in UVL. Not to have the most detailed information and description, but to be the one-stop site for finding games that are otherwise under the radar of the mainstream. For this it is important to have the basic information to be complete as possible and to have screenshots in the game entries, because thats as important to identify a game as the basic text info (and makes everything look nicer). For (user-written) reviews, FAQs, videos, news etc there are much better sites out there. Other categories like external reviews, groups, characters are well implemented or are promising and supporting elements for this. Everything works well on UVL that does not need a later manual change (the reason why I am no longer linking videos for example is that they tend to get delete over the years and I have to correct that, which I think makes it a feature thats just not working well).

So I agree that an update of the homepage to reflect that overall philosophy is a good idea.


[OPINION: THE NOT SO GOOD]

- All the elements I did not mention above I actually liked and miss them personally.
* The statistics were always interesting to see whether progress has been made (and there is no way any longer to see the statistics I guess?)
* The latest forum posts were useful, because I could see when someone posted something new
* The site news were not used much but just belonged there

- Missing images on the homepage. I understand the approach to keep it simple and clean. Like with the Google search entry site which to my surprise stayed very clean over all the years. The problem I have with that is that you cannot see by first impression that UVL is a site about games. Compare Mobygames homepage or Gamefaqs homepage (the two major game databases I see in direct competition to UVL when it comes to sheer number of games listed): They have screenshots/covers etc. on the homepage and you instantly see that its a gaming site. Maybe the number of elements are too high; but really in the first seconds I thought UVL had turned into a "you can buy this domain site" which jump-scared me.

And last and definitely not least my impression about the current slider search functionality: I got a problem with that and I feel its misleading. Example: I pull the slider from 1988 to 1989. The results show me the NES with 384 games. I click on it and what do you think I would expect would happen? I thought I get a list of those 384 games like in this: https://www.uvlist.net/search?fname=&ftype=&fpersp=&fdisp=&fplay=&flang=&fshop=&ftag=&fauth=&fdesc=&fhard=&fpubdev=&fprod=&fdeve=&fcomp=&feditor=&fedact=&fyear=1988&fyear2=1989&fplat=5&sort=name&ipp=c&fcols%5B%5D=i

But no, it opens up the "most popular overall NES" games without any relation to the year. So the slider at the moment is only for finding a platform. And when clicking on the platform you don't even go to the platform page (which would be https://www.uvlist.net/platforms/detail/5-Nintendo+Entertainment+System ), but get a selection of games that you maybe not even expected / wanted to see. And that game selection stays the same for every platform every time, because the most popular games will stay the same every time of course. If platform pages could be pimped up with proper unified, short and precise description texts and a platform image I would rather have it lead to the platform page from where its a much better start to go on browsing (and the same most popular games are listed there with screenshots anyway).


Thats all I can think of for now.


[UNRELATED BUT IMPORTANT]
All this having said does not make me as nervous as the "issue" I recently formulated in UVL-Shack about developer info btw...

2018-10-06 (updated 2018-10-06)
Statistics, forum tips and news are coming back asap, I'm just finding the best solution on the new layout.
Better stats are available to editors here: https://www.uvlist.net/about/dashboard/

I prefer not to mimic Mobygames or Gamefaqs or any other gaming sites, I'd like to keep improving the page to give enough information without getting to the specialized pages, this mean more platform and then company data, but even tags, events and more.
Some of your doubts on the slider workflow are correct, I'll already make some changes very soon.

2018-10-14
Rearranged some content and added some new sections on the homepage, such as the stats, and news/forum sections.
More is underway.