Author Topic: We need a "General Games Discussion" section  (Read 23383 times)

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Offline Danzik

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #15 on: December 25, 2007, 11:14:27 pm »
I could go either way on this one.  It'd be nice to have somewhere to put general game discussion but, it'd likely be an underutilized.

By the way Sub, your sig is awesome.

Offline Sub

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #16 on: December 25, 2007, 11:27:02 pm »
It could go either way.  If you look at other video game sites:

- Gamespots General Game section has 366,344 posts while their PC Games section has 311,973, PS2 Games Section has 123,132, XBOX section has 21,695, and Gamecube section 35,446.
- 1UP only has a general gaming section
- GameRadars General Gaming section has 74,225 posts, ten thousand less then the PS3 section and 20 thousand more than their PC Game section
- ComputerAndVideoGames forum has 37898 posts, which is more than any other section

I'm leaving IGN out since I couldn't find where it says how many posts the boards have.  Any other big game site I left out?


Oh, and thanks for the compliment on the sig.  I spent countless hours perfecting it.
« Last Edit: December 25, 2007, 11:29:53 pm by Sub »

Offline PatMan33

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #17 on: December 25, 2007, 11:29:38 pm »
There is no benefit to creating a section that will sport mediocre traffic and decrease traffic in two other sections that perform fairly. I may have suggested that general gaming section be created in the past but I was incorrect in that assumption because I did not have a proper handle on the forum's traffic patterns.

In the unlikely event that someone misses a chance to post in a topic in the PC Games section of the forum because they dislike PC games then it's their loss. The forum has a search function to cater to those who do not know where a topic may be, my suggestion would be that more people start using it. If you're truly racking your brain and do not know where to post something than take Cobra's suggestion, put the topic in Everything Else, the topic will then be moved to an appropriate section.

The main issue with running a forum (Maybe you know this) is to strike a balance between having enough places to discuss everything that your members want to discuss and making sure that you do not overwhelm your user base with options. If there are too few places to discuss things then new topics will be left without a home and your members will go somewhere else. Too many choices and the forum is spread out and prone to mass stagnation. This forum has found a good balance in that you can post about any topic you want (It may not fit perfectly but you just need to suck it up) and having enough people and enough 'regulars' in a given section to reply in a timely fashion.

Seeing as each of the two existing sections does okay, it can be assumed that something will have to give if another gaming section is created. In creating a general gaming section a tipping point will be reached that will either a) result in three sparsely used forums that will stagnate or b) leave us with a general gaming forum that gets very few posts and is more or less seen as a waste of space.

I speak from experience, both on this forum and other forums. My argument is not to try to quash your idea outright, but I've been around long enough and know this forum's patterns better than anyone. I am certain that at the current load, another section that deals with gaming (much of which will fall between the two existing sections) will do more harm than good.


In response to your latest post, Sub (It just showed up as I was about to post) I will say this: While I think the world of the Gaming Steve forums, we are not GameSpot or 1up and do not have the numbers that they do. Perhaps in the future if we have more members a general gaming forum can work, but right now we don't have enough bodies to fill the theater.
« Last Edit: December 25, 2007, 11:34:13 pm by PatMan33 »

Offline Sub

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #18 on: December 25, 2007, 11:46:16 pm »
There is no benefit to creating a section that will sport mediocre traffic and decrease traffic in two other sections that perform fairly. I may have suggested that general gaming section be created in the past but I was incorrect in that assumption because I did not have a proper handle on the forum's traffic patterns.

If it does not get much traffic, then it will hardly decrease traffic in the other two sections.  If it does well enough that the other two sections become unused, then having more than one section in the first place was redundant. 

We currently have sections which go unused, yet the world is not coming to an end, the forum is flourishing regardless.  With that being said, I firmly believe that the PC Games section, Console Games section and General Games section would all coexist quite well.

In the unlikely event that someone misses a chance to post in a topic in the PC Games section of the forum because they dislike PC games then it's their loss. The forum has a search function to cater to those who do not know where a topic may be, my suggestion would be that more people start using it. If you're truly racking your brain and do not know where to post something than take Cobra's suggestion, put the topic in Everything Else, the topic will then be moved to an appropriate section.

We want the community to grow.  Forcing users to search multiple sections for a topic, or worse yet, forcing them to use the search button is not providing the best possible environment for users.  Like I stated before, our users should not have to spend time searching or guessing which section a thread will be in, it should be known.  To quote Futurama, "If you do things right, people won't be sure you've done anything at all."


The main issue with running a forum (Maybe you know this) is to strike a balance between having enough places to discuss everything that your members want to discuss and making sure that you do not overwhelm your user base with options. If there are too few places to discuss things then new topics will be left without a home and your members will go somewhere else. Too many choices and the forum is spread out and prone to mass stagnation. This forum has found a good balance in that you can post about any topic you want (It may not fit perfectly but you just need to suck it up) and having enough people and enough 'regulars' in a given section to reply in a timely fashion.

Seeing as each of the two existing sections do okay, it can be assumed that something will have to give if another gaming section is created. A tipping point will be reached that will either a) result in three sparsely used forums that will stagnate or b) leave us with a general gaming forum that gets very few posts and is more or less seen as a waste of space.

We will not reach a tipping point.  There will be three main gaming forums that will each warrant their fair share of threads.  The PC Games Section will obviously be a place to discuss any PC game.  The console section will obviously be a place to discuss any Console games.  A General Gaming section will be  a place to discuss gaming news, gaming trends, anything game related that's not about a specific game or console.  Each serves it's own unique purpose that will not be overlapped by any other section. 

In response to your latest post, Sub (It just showed up as I was about to post) I will say this: While I think the world of the Gaming Steve forums, we are not GameSpot or 1up and do not have the numbers that they do. Perhaps in the future if we have more members a general gaming forum can work, but right now we don't have enough bodies to fill the theater.

It's not a matter of the amount of users we have.

Offline PatMan33

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #19 on: December 26, 2007, 12:03:52 am »
Contrary to your closing statement, the number of users does matter. While we have over three thousand members here only a small percentage of them are active. On a given day Console Games and PC Games will each see perhaps forty individual members. Think of these members as suppliers, they are supplying each section with a certain number of posts each day and this number has been fairly constant and increasing at a tepid rate.

If we give them another section to which they must also supply posts, there will be a bit of a conflict. As we've stated earlier, the majority of the topics that would go into this general gaming forum would be comprised of subject matter that fits in both Console Games and PC Games. With this in mind, it could be hypothesized that while the number of individual visits to each section will remain roughly the same, the amount of new material coming in will decrease. It is my opinion that this decrease in posting will be greater than the total amount of gain that each section sees and will cause stagnation.

A general gaming section, at least in the current context, would not have enough unique material to garner any kind of increase in activity. In order to survive it will cannibalize topics that are also suited to the two preexisting sections and cause the entire structure to break down. It's a matter of over saturation, there would be too many 'gaming' sections and not enough unique material to sustain positive growth in any one section.


Also, I've got to disagree with your stance on using the search function. It is a very valuable tool that more people need to use, think of it like doing your research before jumping into the thick of things.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2007, 12:07:47 am by PatMan33 »

Offline Cobra

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #20 on: December 26, 2007, 12:20:49 am »
Forcing people to use the search function is the the optimal choice far to few people use it (in the whole internet not just here). Keep in mind the alternative to people not using the search is double topics as you said people don't visit every topic on the board creating another will mean less people will go to another section it spreads the user base out. The only reason a new section is made is because a current section is over saturated with topics and a split must be made to keep it organized.

Prime example is the spore and spore CC. Spore forums were so crowded that you couldn't move for all the posts of peoples concepts for aliens and cities etc. As a result a split was made to make it easier for those looking for news and to discuss game mechanics to do so and those looking to show case ideas to do so as well.

The only reason another general gaming section to be made is that the forum traffic to pick up posts and topics increase and to tidy up individual sections that are being flooded with new topics making sections far more specialized. For the sites current size and traffic the sections have a perfect balance of generalization and specifics.

Offline Daxx

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #21 on: December 26, 2007, 12:53:47 am »
I don't see why it's necessary. Just stick it in one or the other, depending on which is more applicable (and one always will be). We don't have enough thread turnover to warrant another section, especially since a new section will only lead to cannibalisation from the other three.

The argument that "people won't check the other section" is ridiculous. I don't own any portable game systems yet I still check that section. It's your fault if you can't be bothered to keep tabs on the other sections. We're not that big that it's impossible. We get five or six new threads per day on average, and that's across the whole forums - most of them will be in Everything Else or one of the Spore sections. We might have one new thread per day across each of the gaming sections.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2007, 12:57:11 am by Daxx »

Offline Gorman Conall

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #22 on: December 28, 2007, 12:15:37 pm »
I don't know....a general gaming area would also be a good place for topics on games that are for both PC and consoles such as the orange box and assassins creed.

The way i am looking at it topics about PC games hardware and software would go in the PC section.

Then Console games controllers hardware and all that jazz in the Consoles section.

Everything else such as the PC/Console combo games and news business, discussions, stuff like that kane and lynch thing would all go in general gaming.

I think it would actually reduce clutter because things would be more organized.

I disagree that a topic is always more applicable to one or the other many times theres to much cross over for it to be warranted use in one area over the other.

Offline PatMan33

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #23 on: December 28, 2007, 12:19:48 pm »
I don't know....a general gaming area would also be a good place for topics on games that are for both PC and consoles such as the orange box and assassins creed.

This is the cannibalization that I've been talking about.

Offline Gorman Conall

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #24 on: December 28, 2007, 12:24:14 pm »
I don't know....a general gaming area would also be a good place for topics on games that are for both PC and consoles such as the orange box and assassins creed.

This is the cannibalization that I've been talking about.

*Scratches head*

 What? did i rape English or make a typo??? ???

Offline PatMan33

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #25 on: December 28, 2007, 12:28:12 pm »
Not at all, but your description of putting multiplatform games in the general gaming section is exactly what I was talking about when I said that the new forum would be bad for the two that we already have.

You would be taking topics from the two preexisting forums and instead putting them in the new forum. This would cause the two older forums to lose posts (And they already have a low rate of posts as it is) and grow stagnant.

Offline Gorman Conall

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #26 on: December 28, 2007, 12:46:52 pm »
But wouldn't it be better if those two did suffer to some extent?. I was just thinking while there may not be as much traffic in PC games, Console Games, or General Games it would just be more tidy and every topic would have a place to go.

That way anyone going into console games would know what sort of discussions would be in there unlike now where you never know what to expect. You get stuff like jack Thompson discussions like that in there. Same with PC and general games.

It would also save a some arguments about where a particular thread should go if they were multi platform.

I know what you are saying but is it important for each section to have a lot of traffic?. Rather then have less traffic in each section but have things nice and neat.

I could be missing something however before now i never really gave the subject much thought.

I did always think an art and drawings section would be a nice addition. However that might be to close to the creation corner...

I'm the kind of guy who has his room color coded and organized in certain orders and stuff. I'm fussy :P



Offline PatMan33

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #27 on: December 28, 2007, 12:50:10 pm »
Read some of the earlier posts in this topic, I've already put my opinions about the states of those two forums in here before.

Offline Daxx

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #28 on: December 28, 2007, 12:51:22 pm »
But wouldn't it be better if those two did suffer to some extent?. I was just thinking while there may not be as much traffic in PC games, Console Games, or General Games it would just be more tidy and every topic would have a place to go.

Nope. Forums are driven by content density. When you have a critical mass of posters, a forum can exist as a self-contained community (as this one did during the period that Steve stopped podcasting and there was no more Spore news) which exists purely because of the sheer amount of communication. Part of this is also the perception of communication - I'm sure everyone has seen the phenomenon of the new forum admin who makes twenty sections for his forums before even a single member joins, only to find that no-one does because they're intimidated by the lack of anything in the huge space. This is why when you organise a club night or a gig it's better to pack out a smaller venue than half fill one twice the size.

Whilst these sections are moving so slowly (as I said, maybe one new thread a day in one of the three sections if you're lucky) they're being sustained by the other parts of the forum. Reducing the content density is not going to help these sections achieve their own critical mass.

Offline The Time Traveller

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Re: We need a "General Games Discussion" section
« Reply #29 on: December 29, 2007, 01:19:50 pm »
Also, let's split "Console Games"  into "PS3", "PS1 and 2", "Gamecube", "Wii", "NES, SNES, and 64", "XBOX", and "XBOX 360".

Also, let's split "Portable Games" into "Gameboy Line", "DS", and "PSP".

Also, let's split "Forum Games" into "Mafia-style games", "Chain Games", "Guess games (Like Where am I?)", and "Other Games".
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