I woke up in a bad mood this morning and typed some stuff here: http://forums.indiegamer.com/showthread.php?p=191041#post191041 I'm moving it to a separate thread as some of you might miss it in the thread that have started it. I'll call it "Reinventing Indiegamer". We have too many of n00b stuff posted that detracts from the long gone cool image of the forum that was here with all the beta tests of exciting products that rarely pop in, get 3 comments and go out of the front page in favor of updates and some free gfx packs. What would these beta products get out of this forum nowdays? Rarely few posts where someone will say "how the screenshots are cool, but I didn't play the game". Great. I haven't seen any great gameplay or biz analytics here in years. If you'd be a n00b and would look at Indiegamer, you'd see a lot of n00b games, content packs, alternative platform releases and some game update news, but it wouldn't help you. The forum isn't educating noobs. There's no sticky post that leads them to news sites, such as indiegames.com/blog/ to give them a feeling what is a modern indie freeware spirit is about, what is $$$ indie about and what should've been an open source game engine or something instead of "coolest remake on earth". I haven't seen any reaction to crappy games with something constructive such as "Please play decent games and make decent games."? This forum missed a transition between original underground indie scene that was represented by GameTunnel few years ago and a modern that is represented by all those teams who only announce their games on this forum after they pop up on Steam & IGF, not while they are in development as the forum simply stopped lacking credibility. There are few things that you'd see on the forum nowadays: - n00b freeware that is represented by gamemaker community that eventually started to have it's awesome pearls! but we never experience any of those here as the guys don't get out of their communities. - middleware/game engines that are that aren't properly exposed and explained and still don't deserve a special section - the forum caught a strong wave of casual, though, but since then lost the traction as it never exposed it properly - alternative platforms that never deserved their own section - so people visiting this forum lacked a feeling it welcomes them, however now everything is flooded with iPhone so other decent games get buried - we have a total lack of professional freeware dudes that are all about creativity - represented by indiegames.com/blog/ and IGF - online transition was welcomed as "boo flash lame!!!" until the crisis striked and advertisement prices have gone down. just some local rebels here post decent stuff that nobody takes serious while it's more important than another n00b game. A lack of proper forum restructuring a year ago made it oversaturated by people who didn't move on and are rebelling against the change. There's no proper forum structure that will explain any person coming to this forum that it welcomes any platform. Once again, a lack of product sorting by platform/technology makes good games simply buried instead of staying where they should be noticed. A ranking system inside the forum should really encourage people to post better games and make better games... It lacks moderation. It lacks direction, where moderators would lead people instead of providing them a greasy SANDBOX saying "well there's all that great legacy, try to get what you are into". There are 3 problems: 1) Exposure - the forum is well-visited, however it has no site, not even a blog that highlights the top discussions or even exclusive beta announcements. There should be highlights through blog. There should be a facebook group where all of us will present the forum and throw in announcements to our friends and a way to cross-promote the game through reposting/sharing with friends. What the heck, there should be a twitter group that will throw exclusive beta-test calls. Having 1 reply to a post is not enough. Not even mentioning worthless attempts to put any gametunnel announcements to digg. Digg is all about paid exposure, there's reddit.com and stumbleupon. There are better places to give exposure, when properly arranged. 2) Knowledge transfer. There are no sticky posts with any kind of knowledge database, pointing to tigsource, indiegames, industry sites, etc. This should be handled much better and communicated in sticky threads and through blogroll list. This forum must start to get exposure elsewhere. What the heck, we barely see cool games noticed from the outside industry and never discuss them. I see poor SHMUPs being released all the time without anyone saying "please play good games, please play proper games, please innovate, please look at those 100 freeware shmups that are freaking better than yours". What the heck, we don't even embed youtube videos with cool games here. We are stuck in a stone BBS age! 3) The mess. I'm strictly against any pre-moderation. Let people post without restrictions and moderators will fix the mess. The only mess there is a structure of the forum. It needs to be reworked and at least 1 year old archive must be re-sorted properly. The only thing moderators should do (besides spam and bad behaviour) is to move the threads to proper forums and if they see a good game that deserves exposure, highlight it in the blogs. Yes, it is hard to distinguish the noise between good posts and the bad thing is that indie badge is down. While there's some elite private forum, it's no use to everyone else. There should be a naming convention for threads to add a platform before the post, e.g. "[iPhone] megagame released!". It is currently honored by some members, but if moderators will be manually renaming the threads to have prefixes, it will simplify the search through forum and any n00b who will come will see that entire game-related forums have these prefixes. There should be proning of freelancer announcements. Most of the links to their portfolios don't work anymore, I've tried to reach 10 of them once and barely 3 answered. The forum should bring some inspiration to people and push the edge. I was moderating the 100k+ pages industry forum in Russia, along with participating in a mobile games forum 5 years ago in Russia where developers were posting screenshots from cool newly released games and each time with their new release tried to reach Gameloft and jump even further. Please type something smart if you are up to reinventing the forum with 3 basic things: 1) restructure and resort threads, improve moderation, enable embeds, open a forum that will nurture innovation by noting the games coming outside of this forum 2) open a typical blog that will promote good games, summarize notable threads, post fancy pics to get noticed elsewhere. give permissions to all indies so they'd be able to express their views in that blog collectively, doesn't matter what they write unless it talks about a great game from this forum and features pic/video 3) facebook and twitter groups for beta test requests, etc ... Add your own suggestions, but please think outside of the box. Think about people that should be coming here and posting here. Think about hundreds of people who read but never post. Think about noobs who aren't benefitting from the legacy because it's too hard to distinguish signal from the noise.