..and here I am, with my next announcement.
I ask you all to read this one extremely carefully, as it's very important that everybody understands it completely, in every way. I've poured over this explanation for some time now to ensure it is as crystal clear as possible.
A while back, Myself, Silver and Blue had a long discussion about the future of UFF and where we are taking it. I make it no secret that I've wanted to make UFF as professional as possible and get it into a 'proper gaming site', as such. A lot of you know, I am in constant contact with people from Microsoft, Square Enix, Nintendo, Sony, Sega and Koei to name but a few. Thanks to my work here, and on other gaming websites, including the newly relaunched Club Skill
, that both Mike and myself work on as a side project, games drop through my letterbox unannounced daily, attempting to get them some coverage on one of the sites.
It's about time we did just that. Or at least, that was what I said to Mike and Phil, and we hatched the idea I'm announcing to you all now. We decided adding a general gaming section to the site would be far too, well, general, and far too much content than we can afford to put out, with hired help or not.
So we decided it should be a General RPG Site
. Right now, this project is codenamed, originally, URPGS. If we'll stick with this name is another matter entirely, but any ideas for different names would be much appreciated.
So, URPGS is a general RPG Site. News, Reviews, Previews, Articles and Editorials on RPGs past and present. Think IGN, but sticking to just RPGs. Think RPGamer, but not part of that horrid "Advanced Media Network".
Before you all worry, this is not the end of UFFSite. Don't for one second, think that UFF will suddenly become engulfed by this huge RPG Site. They will share news, reviews and content, but, the idea is, the second somebody clicks on an FF on URPGs, they'll be shot straight back to the original UFF and it's content. Likewise, somebody looking for info on Chrono Trigger or any other RPG on UFF will be shot across to URPGS.
One thing BtG worried about when I told her of this project was changes to the forums. While there will likely be changes to the forums to cope with the undoubted increase in RPG discussion outside FF, these forums will remain as FF-focused as they do now.
In the simplest sense of describing it, I suppose, it's a mini network of sites, with the two sites being the start of it. The general plan in my mind is to extend it, and later have an ULOZS (Unofficial Legend of Zelda Site), and many others sprout from the beginnings of URPGS and UFF.
So, how would these sites work?
For a start, content on URPGS would not
be as extensive as it is on UFFSite. We must have coming up on a hundred pages or something stupid for FF9. This won't be the case. URPGS will simply be made up of:
Reviews & Previews
- As you would expect from any gaming publication, URPGS will be reviewing and previewing all the latest games, as well as building up a comprehensive database of reviews of classic RPGs, to let people know if that 'golden' oldie is worth buying after all.
- As and when it occours, all the latest RPG gaming news.
- Editorials, Special Articles, and the issue of the moment in the RPG world all at your fingertips, with content regularly provided by the URPGS writers.
An example of the type of Review we'd be after, by yours truly, can be found over at Club Skill. An example of a review is my Sonic Rush
Review, and an example of a preview my Perfect Dark Zero Preview.
Neither are perfect; my reviews tend to be too wordy and long, but that's besides the point. A more URPGS example of a review would be the review for Disgaea
that I wrote to give Phil an idea of the kind of content a design should accomodate. That, too, is way too long, but oh well.
News, I'm sure you don't need an example of, but editorials, an example is recent and present: My piece on business tactics and gaming.
The site will be very user friendly for staff, where the CMS (Content Management System) allows the user to place a new article into a category, that puts it down as one of the above. They can also then bind the article to a game. So I can write a review for LTTP, and bind it to the actuasl game's entry in the database, so if a user searches the site for LTTP or goes to the LTTP section in the alphabetical list of games, they will see me review amongst the content. This will be the case for all the different articles types. The site will have a polls and other extended content, but that's simple enough - staff will be able to edit it.
Adding content to the site will be like making a forum post. It'll be very easy. You will be able to browse the site via console - clicking PS2 displaying all the PS2 RPGs, clicking GBA doing the same for that system - like IGN and other sites. I think you should be all getting the idea by now.
The main problem with this idea is the sheer volume of content we have to provide. There's a lot of RPGs out there, and even providing a Preview, Review, and the news for even the major titles is going to be difficult, even if we have companies behind us sending us Review and Preview copies of the games. Not only this, but we're trying to work up a database of old reviews for classic titles.
We're going to be getting a full staff complement (Of around 20, or more) to go with this site. That's how serious we are about ensuring content is up to date. While the work is voluntary, review copies from companies will be winging their way to staff members.
We'll be working it similarly to Club Skill - staffers can "bind" themselves to a game, and claim it as theirs. Say I were to bind Kingdom Hearts 2 - the previews, reviews, and news updates for that title would be my responsibility. If a review copy came through, it would automatically be mine. Games that don't get binded will be allocated to people by the editors... But more on all that later.
I think it's about time I sat back and let you all.. take this all in.
Soon, I will most more details on URPGS. Trust me, it's all very exciting.
Finally, you should all know, all the companies I mentioned at the start of this topic are aware of this scheme and extremely excited to get involved with us and this scheme as it launches. Especially helpful are Nintendo, Koei and Microsoft, but they've all pledged their support.
And if that isn't exciting, I don't know what is.
If you're interested in helping with this project in any way, contact me. We're looking for people to start writing Reviews and the like right away, so that when URPGS launches with V4, it will be filled to the brim with content already.
If you're interested in possibly starting a URPGS sister site ready for the launch (Like that ULOZS idea I mentioned as an example), likewise, contact me, and we'll set you up.
Your thoughts, ideas, critisizms, and general reactions would be appreciated. In other words. reply.