Template Monster…your opinion ?

Hi Friends,

I was looking at the 100's of Templates on TM and was wondering 'how difficult is it' to work with them? (they have some very nice templates to choose from).

  • I've read some bad reviews about their WordPress themes…but what about their HTML sites…has anyone tried successfully to use their HTML Templates?
  • Anyone have an opinion on their products?

thanks very much!

[ Rock and Pop ] Open Question : Who are the best and worst bass guitarists in your opinion?

Best: Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) Geddy Lee (Rush) John Entwistle (The Who) Jack Bruce  Les Claypool Tony Levin Cliff Burton (Metallica) John Deacon (Queen) Dee Murray (Elton John’s band) Tiran Porter (Doobie Brothers) John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin) Stu Cook (CCR) Duff McKagan (Guns N Roses) Krist…whatever his name is (Nirvana) Worst (All root notes. Who cares if they “fit the song?”): Cliff Williams (AC/DC) Adam Clayton (U2) Nate Mendal (Foo Fighters) Dusty Hill (ZZTOP) Michael Anthony (Van Halen) Gene Simmons (Kiss) Sir Paul McCartney  Roger Waters The Coldplay bassist Howie Epstein (Tom Petty’s band) None of the above are qualified to be bass players, unless they at least play some fills. 

[ Comedy ] Open Question : Comedy Section: In your opinion, which character of Friends do you think is popular?

Out of these list of characters, which Friends do you think is better? 1. Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston) 2. Monica Geller (Courtney Cox) 3. Phoboe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow) 4. Joey Tribbiani (Matt LeBlanc) 5. Chandler Bing (Matthew Perry) 6. Ross Geller (David Schwimmer)

new product for prototyping. tell me your opinion

Easyframe is not just a commercial product that the team created for the sake of making money, but a really working tool that helps the Design Studio to show its clients prototypes literally while they are dating. Easyframe is designed to speed up and simplify the prototyping process as much as possible and not lose customers due to slowness or banal lack of time. now case uses 8 designers every day in the Studio, and the percentage of unsatisfied customers for 2 months has decreased by…

new product for prototyping. tell me your opinion

Are there any standardized questionnaires available for asking adults about their opinion on the suitability of a system designed for children?

My team and I have developed an augmented reality app for children (primary school students).

I would like to get their teachers’ opinions about the usability of the system in the context of their students.

First, I thought about using standardized questionnaires like System Usability Scale or User Experience Questionnaire but those are designed for asking the actual user of a system and furthermore, I actually don’t want too much focus on the usability rather than on their opinion about the suitability of the system for children.

I am wondering if there are any standardized questionnaires available for cases like that.

Help resolve territory acquisition design difference of opinion in MMO RTS

I’m an indie game designer and developer. My business partner and I are close to launching an MMO RTS, but we are stuck on how to handle one feature: territory expansion.

First, a few details about the game so that the answers can be in context:

  • It’s played on a map of the world using the Google Maps API
  • It is a “true” RTS – very little is abstracted.
  • There are actual buildings you can place on the land, actual units that you can move around the world etc.
  • Territory acquisition is currently by way of moving an infantry unit onto a “square” of land, which turns it blue meaning it’s now your territory (you can build buildings on it etc.)

Also, some details about our partnership:

  • We have a 50/50 partnership on costs (and hopefully one day, profits!)
  • We have shared, 50/50 responsibilities on design
  • Everything else is assigned roles:
  • Me: technical lead, coding etc.
  • Him: Art, UI, marketing etc.
  • We have been working together on this game for almost 2 years

Where we’re not seeing eye to eye is how territory expansion should work in the game. My view is this:

  • Players start with a small “square” of territory (about 5m x 5m) and expand by claiming adjacent “squares”
  • Once they hit a number of squares equivalent to a larger square (5 x 5 small squares, or about 25 x 25m), they can then claim squares at that size
  • This keeps increasing until they can eventually claim 500 km x 500 km squares
  • There is a mathematical model behind this, but I think all that is relevant is that the sizes align to degree increments, and that I have modelled it so that there are 10 “map levels” in the game, with the largest map level having about 2,500 large squares across the globe

I believe these are the pros and cons to my approach:

Pros:

  • I feel that it adds a lot of “flavour” to the game having players grow in size and power from owning territory the size of a room in a house, then maybe a house, then a block, then a suburb, city, state etc. all the way up to small country size squares
  • It allows players of different “power” to compete against each other in the same game world. Players at the smallest map levels can only see and claim territory from players of equivalent power, and likewise players at the largest level compete for vast tracts of land, and can leave smaller players alone
  • It looks very neat – map squares always align on a grid, with no overlaps

Cons:

  • Using this approach, players would not be able to see other players’ territories at different map levels. This is because territory would overlap, which not only looks terrible, it’s just not the way maps are represented, and also causes technical issues wherein any API you use (e.g. Google Maps) doesn’t know which layer you meant to click on
  • However, players can see other, more/less powerful players’ territories by clicking on some up/down buttons so that players can see what’s going on around them at different power levels

His view is this:

  • Squares should always be a fixed size, say 5 km x 5 km

I believe these are the pros and cons to his approach:

Pros:

  • It’s simpler! My life as a developer and designer would be so much easier if squares were always the same size
  • All players can always see all other players’ squares because everyone is basically at the same “map level”, all the time

Cons:

  • It makes the game feel like a large checkered board game, or a big version of Risk rather than an RTS
  • Basic grids like this have been done before in other games – I feel that my approach is more novel and interesting (albeit a bit risker since it’s new)
  • Acquiring territory may feel “quicker and easier” as you start the game since you already start with a massive chunk of land, but I think that will quickly turn into a grind once you realise that there are about 26 million squares of this size on earth
  • There is less aspirational value to capturing “more” squares, as opposed to a psychological player reward associated with being allowed to capture “larger” squares as you level up

A few more facts at this point:

  • I was previously a professional game designer, so I believe I usually know what works and doesn’t work in games (although I’m only human, and can obviously be wrong)
  • My business partner has no experience in the game industry. He is coming at this problem from a “this feels right to me” perspective
  • I have already coded, implemented and tested my approach and it works perfectly (albeit with the constraint of having to choose to go up/down to view larger/smaller players’ territory)
  • It has taken me about 2 months to design and develop this approach and it is an integral part of the (pre-alpha) version of the game
  • The game has only been played by very few family members and friends, and we are maybe a month away from a private alpha launch to a closed group of people whom we both know

He is suggesting that we either go with his fixed square approach, start completely from scratch, or stop developing the game altogether (after almost 2 years of time and money, with maybe a few weeks to go before an alpha launch).

I guess I’m looking for advice on two things:

  1. Which is the better game design approach: gradually increasing square sizes (with the constraints I mentioned above), or fixed square sizes (and their associated pros and cons)
  2. If I’m convinced that my design makes more sense from a design, gameplay, technical, aesthetic and financial perspective (since I don’t want to waste the couple of months working on this feature, let alone the couple of years working on this game), how do I convince him of this?

Any external, objective advice on this is much appreciated.

Which survey tool with an audience service is best in your opinion?

I’m benchmarking among surveys tools in order to find a tool for very simple and quick surveys AND including an audience/panelist search service. The tool I’m looking for offers audience diversity, so to have representative sampling with Italy-italian target.

Any suggestion? Did any of you create successfull surveys with italian audience?

Below a list of the services I’ve been analyzing:

  • Google surveys
  • SurveyMonkey
  • SurveySparrow
  • Qualtrics
  • SurveyGizmo
  • Surveyplanet

Thanks for any help 🙂

Review site domain opinion needed!!

Hello Everybody,

I am thinking to opening a local product review site where we will review all kinds of local businesses and their products and readers will be able to comment and vote. Now the real confusion begins where choosing the domain. I have a domain in my mind. The domain name is something like this xxxxreview.com . Now what I can't decide whether should I go for xxxxreview.com or xxxxreviews.com . both of them are available but I can't decide whether should I go with Review or…

Review site domain opinion needed!!