Guys as you may or may not have noticed I have been fickering with our website again. I know I do this regularly but I’m happy that each reincarnation pushes us forward a little more in terms of audience captivation and retention. I have removed the Booties Blog section from the website and incorporated it into the new home page. Despite having good viewer figures it was sort of ostracised from the main site so I decided to pair it up with the new homepage. The old homepage again whilst aesthetically pleasing to me did not work on some members systems for whatever reason and it was more of a place holder with nothing worth stopping by and having a look at once you passed through it initially. It was also quite dark and foreboding which is in direct conflict to what we as a club offer. I would hazard a guess that each of us sees us as the lighter side of wargaming where victory is not everything but enjoyment, interaction and fun is the important factor that brings us back to the site each day.
As for the forum personally I would like to match the forum to the same style as the homepage but I know a lot of you guys do not like the brighter forum screens for reading and so have decided to lock that one down and do no more with it apart from keeping the software up to date.
The new home page has a magazine feel to it and that is what I’m aiming for… if I can find myself doing regular articles and the like this will be a fresh place to pop by in the morning to see what has been happening in a snapshot in and around the club. Of course for those prepared to dig the forum itself is always a good place to battle through the posts every morning to catch the ones that interest you. But for others I feel the home page will be a breathe of fresh air.
I have re-branded the FGM logo and added the gold writing stating ‘Where Wargaming & History Collide’. I sometimes lose that focus that we aren’t just about war gaming but we also indulge in the historical aspect of it to. This bigger more prominent logo stretches the full width of the home page and the actual forum logo has been updated also.
These new logos tie in with the You Tube channel logo, the YT channel is now up and running on a pretty regular basis and it is something I intend to put some time into in the near future. I have been doing an on-line course regarding YouTube which involves discussions and tests regarding video production, lighting, props, sound, video framing and the like. Looking at the videos I have done as recently as a week or two back I can see so many flaws now that I’m uncomfortable with them being there and will most likely start phasing them out as I use my new skill set hopefully to offer a better looking, absorbing video experience for members and surfers in general. The 2194 Days of War feature will remain as I think it directly emphasises the fact that we are not just a war gaming club but a community that has an interest in military history. I have done 15 so far and am finding them truly absorbing to make and am really learning so much more than I previously knew about the Second World War which basically centred around D-Day and Market Garden. The Battle of of Khalkhin Gol anyone….? Well, I had never heard of it before and now I understand it a little bit better after researching the undeclared Soviet–Japanese Border War (1939).
I envisage the You Tube channel having content as varied as AAR’s, Reviews, Member Chats, Historical Discussion and the like. Although, primarily aimed at the 200 folk we have here as members I’m positive it will also be of interest to persons not strictly war gamers but military history enthusiasts. And as ever despite my videos being pretty amateurish I still hope to keep that little bit of humour in and hopefully avoid it being an exercise in futility. 🙂
I’m always looking for ideas for You Tube videos and ideas for the site in general so please don’t be shy. I’m probably the most approachable guy at the site so get those ideas down and sent over and I will consider them or at least explain why they are not do-able. This site is yours guys… I provide the canvas but you bring the paint. Thanks for reading.