The current iteration of the GameDevelopers.ie is a work in progress.
Since August we have completed our change in infrastructure, and are running nicely on our new server. We have ported over a lot of content and set up our twitter account.
The to do list is still quite long however. We still have an extensive archive of content to tag and bring back online. There are design and CSS issues still outstanding. We are also aware that we need to make the site more mobile friendly, and this is going to be part of phase 2.
In order to see what else our members feel that our community needs, we have been reviewing our survey results and we would like to report them here to you.
Over the summer and early Autumn we conducted a user survey. 40 people responded (thanks everyone who participated), of which 88% were male. Respondents were aged from 35 years and below.
Over half were in the games industry, while another quarter were in the ‘other category’, possibly working in other industries.
Many had been members of gd.ie for 11 years but equally some had only become users in the past one or two years. The image below shows an early design from 2003.
For respondents the home page, forums, news, features, events and jobs were the most regularly visited pages.
Company information and college information was only occasionally visited and personal profiles even less.
When it comes to contributing and getting involved people had posted on the forums and attended shindigs but there was less involvement in submitting content bar the odd job or event. Hopefully we have made it much easier to submit content with the new site, and a number of you have done so.
When asked about new features, or new channels we might start using, the most popular was twitter using a specific hashtag (now set up…@gamedev_ie).
This was followed by a Youtube Channel, an email summary mailout and finally a Facebook newsfeed. The last three are in development and will be launched as more volunteers get involved.
Other notable suggestions include (our answers included):
- A section for newbies to share information on tech, tools – The new forums have this, and we take submissions!
- Change the new font! – We can and as we tweak the design this may change again:)
- A useful calendar with exports to Google Calendar – now available
- Better UI. – We’re half way there
- Make work more like a news site – we’ll publish what people send us
- It should work seamlessly cross-platform on mobiles / tablets – planned in phase 2
- Regular reporting of calls for submissions as part of a site digest e-mail (i.e. the following events/expos/talks are now open for submissions etc.) – Our #IrishGameDev newsletter is opening soon
- Interviews and conversations with Irish industry support groups – enterprise Ireland, EU funding bodies etc. We need more people to get involved to help us to do these – they might make great college or side projects…
- Highlight new faces, up and coming talent. – We are trying to do this now through our news section
- Shout about new games – We are doing this through our showcase of Irish made games
Just over 40% of respondents offered to help out – and we will be in touch when we get the technical side of things settled.
We are still seeking volunteers, and we can’t get the site being what the community wants without everyone chipping in, whether it’s submitting news and updates, information about your games or feature length articles.
We could also do with a little finance every now and then too – thanks to Demonware for supporting our work for the past few years!
Thanks everyone for the feedback and the patience.