The past, present and future of indiegamer.com

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by bantamcitygames, Mar 23, 2014.

  1. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

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    In the beginning:
    In all began with Steve Pavlina and the Dexterity forums. Steve had created a great indie game dev community based on sharing his experience in creating Dweep and the revenue he was able to generate from it. After some time, Steve wanted to get out of the game dev business and focus his efforts on personal growth, so he closed down the forums and made the site's contents available to a couple of its core members (Mike Boeh [Retro64] and Steve Verreault [Twilight Games]) and the IndieGamer Forums were born!

    Not so long ago:
    Mike and Steve V. did a great job for the last 10 years. I learned almost everything I know about game development from members that used to frequent these forums and I know a lot of others that did as well. I enjoyed frequenting the forums and when the opportunity arose I became a Moderator and helped out with the site a bit. In the last year or so Mike and Steve V. became so busy with their game dev careers that there wasn't much time to keep the site up to date with security patches, spam blockers, etc. Occasionally I would email Mike to let him know about a potential issue and he would log in and fix it.

    About a year ago:
    There was an onslaught of spam... I mean serious amounts of spam. More moderators were assigned, but there was so much spam that it was hard to keep up with. This lasted for months and ultimately we lost a huge percentage of the community. I emailed Mike again and asked if I can have admin rights to take care of the spam issue. After a short email exchange, he agreed and with some feedback from the remaining Moderators, we put some new registration/promotions rules into place. Gradually the spam subsided and unfortunately when the dust cleared the community was much smaller and sadly we lost some of the most business savvy members.

    About a month ago:
    Mike and Steve V. approached me and asked me if I would like to take ownership of the site, to which I promptly accepted. This site was where I found the passion for game development and I wouldn't be developing games if it weren't for it, so even though the site had suffered a significant loss, I couldn't pass up the chance to own something that had such sentimental value. Most of you probably noticed some significant downtime in the last couple days. This was me migrating domain registrars from Steve V and the site content from Mike to my own registrar/server.

    In the near future:
    My immediate goal is to try to get the amount of quality post(er)s back to what it once was. To this end, I consulted with the Moderators again and we lightened up on some of the promotion steps, but still kept the stronger registration process. This also means accepting, engaging and cultivating new members who are passionate about game development even if they are new to the industry. From a technical standpoint, I've already started fixing/cleaning up some things around here and I'm going to get the site up to the latest patch version and things like that. I recently ran some member pruning scripts which removed 380,000 spambots! Yikes!

    In the (hopefully) not too distant future:
    Once the dust settles, I would like to start adding some more indie-oriented content and I'm open to ideas if you guys have strong feelings about what content you would like to see on the site (List of payment processors, Game post mortems, etc). PM me, use the contact form, or email me directly at bcampolo@bantamcity.com.
     
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  2. svero

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Good luck with the site! I'm glad we were able to find someone to pass the site on to.
     
  3. fieldrequired

    fieldrequired New Member

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    Thanks for all the efforts! much useful information on this forum - did start to worry when I noticed it offline... Good luck with your battle against the dreaded spam.
     
  4. lennard

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Hi Bruno, I'm glad you picked it up and have continued to carry the torch!
     
  5. Nutter2000

    Original Member Indie Author

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    Glad you picked this up Bruno, it's needed a strong hand over the past 5 years or so which was sadly lacking as Mike and Steve were both busy (no offence meant).
    I'd love to see the site regrown to it's former glory.

    Personally, I used to like the business focus of the forum.
    We used to point people who were just looking to learn how to code at the gamedev forums to keep the noise to signal ratio higher on this site.
    I still can't think of any other site that focuses on people who are actually making a business out of game dev rather than beginners.

    I know a lot of the vets like Cliffski and GreyAlien moved on more because well a) being too busy but mainly b) because of too many people offering their own unfounded opinions and shouting down the people who were actually doing it for a living.

    So it'd be nice to get some of those people back, perhaps you can ask if they'd like to write an article in return for some advertising or something like that?
    Just a thought :)

    Iain
     
  6. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

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    Thanks for the support guys! I do still think the forum will be more business focused than other game dev forums out there, but I just don't want to shut out the new indies either, because most likely they will need to start thinking about the business side of things, but might not be there yet. I know when I was writing my first game, I was more in the 'can I even do this' phase and hadn't put much thought in the marketing/business side at that point, but I still found value in coming to the forums and posting about my game. I think I may reorganize some of the forum categories as well since some of them seem ambiguous at the moment. I'm open to suggestions for removing/combining/new forums.

    Nutter, I've thought about that as well and just have to figure out a professional way to approach some of those industry veterans that doesn't sound like desperation :)
     
  7. Leon

    Original Member

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    Wow, I remember lurking the Dexterity forums as a real young lad with video game dreams. Can't believe it was that long ago. Eek. ;)

    I enjoy the wide ranging categories on the forums, but I know I originally got involved and mostly read the business side on the site. I feel like that's a unique quality to these forums that you don't really see on any other game development forums, and I've learned quite about of useful information from that. So if the forums were to get a little more streamlined towards that, I think I'd be fine with that.
     
  8. Nutter2000

    Original Member Indie Author

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    Bruno, you could simply just ask them to write an article for the relaunch of the site.
    I know Jake (GreyAlien) is pretty keen on supporting other indies and Cliff regularly writes stuff on his blog that he thinks would be interesting / helpful to other indies.
    So I suspect they'd be willing to help out.
     
  9. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

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    Leon, I know what you mean. It feels like just yesterday that I was creating a Dweep-inspired puzzle game.

    Iain, I think that is a great idea, maybe it could even be like a weekly thing with different dev blogs. I would like to make a permanent section of the site for things like that as even the most valuable threads tend to get buried over time.
     
  10. lennard

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    I agree with what has been said here - the real strength of this forum, to me, has been that it is a place where I can talk to others who are betting the farm to make a crazy life work.

    I have a couple of proposals. I'm promoting the games of other folks these days - if you guys have games that I like then please drop me a line.

    Over time I'd like to do some contests on my site and will be soliciting game downloads as prizes. This is a chance for promo. for those titles and the cost of a digital give away is pretty painless. I'm putting it forward that I am usually happy to give away my own game as prizes as well.

    Lastly. If anybody ever has any thoughts on how to do a bundle then I'd be happy to participate as well.
     
  11. Bad Sector

    Original Member

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    Good to see the forums back and working properly again, i'll most likely resume visiting this place - there is only so much that i can find in Reddit after all and, uhm, compiles tend to be big these days :p.
     
  12. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

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    Good to have you back Bad Sector. If you know anyone else that used to frequent the forums but left because of spam/technical issues, let them know as well! :)
     
  13. ggambett

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    This is awesome! Congratulations and best of luck!

    Knowing Steve and Mike, they would never leave the site in less than great hands. Very well deserved, Bruno :)

    (on an unrelated note, I'm gladly surprised that I still remembered my password - and that it still works)
     
  14. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

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    Thanks Gabriel! and welcome back to the site. I know you are not doing much game development these days, but I hope you decide to stop by the site from time to time, even just to tell us how much you miss your indie days! :p
     
  15. Stefan Maton

    Original Member

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    I'm looking forward to the "revive" of this forum. The amount of spam was what initially drove me away (along with some reorientation of my business). But seeing this forum getting straighten out makes me want to come back :)
     
  16. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

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    Welcome back Stefan! I recently sent out an email to those who haven't been to the site in a while and I'm hoping others follow your lead.
     

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