The time has finally come. Our brand new site design is almost ready to go live. Today July 25th, MMORPG.com will be down for maintenance for an estimated 24 hours as we bring over the new site and migrate all the data from the old one. Read on for what it all means for you, our loyal readers.
Right now, the entire MMORPG.com site, including the forums, is down for maintenance. Ben, Evan, and the third party team that helped build our new site will be working tirelessly to import all of the existing data from our current site to the new one. It's going to be a long process, and while it could take less than 24 hours, it could also take MORE than 24 hours. You'll want to keep an eye on our Twitter and Facebook for updates throughout the day, as we'll keep you all posted on progress there.
As an important note, we're getting rid of our current mail server and moving over to Google Mail for our staff. This means that your existing MMORPG.com email addresses (email@example.com) will no longer exist. You'll still have forum accounts to use for direct messaging of users and staff, but keep this in mind in case you have any important emails or game accounts tied to your MMORPG.com email address.
I was tempted to show you all a preview of the new site... but there's a lot of test and placeholder content there, so I think I'll just show a tiny snip of what the new homepage is going to look like. Keep in mind, even the ads and site skins are placeholder here:
Yep, that's a white background folks. But fear not! Notice the little black/white circle at the top of the site above the Play Now image? That's the toggle to go from black to white formats. Right now, the Black version is going to be a little off, as the team focused more on the new white layout. Evan will be altering the theme to make it look closer to the color scheme of what we have here on the old site, but there will obviously be more important bugs to squash come next week.
You'll also notice our trending content tracker stays at the top, but all of the content on this site is placeholder, though that FFXIV piece featured at the top is a copy/paste of Rob's recent column. You'll also notice that there are numbers next to the navigation items. Those indicate things that are new since you last visited. You'll also see a new message indicator by your login profile picture. You'll be able to login with Facebook, Twitter, even Wargaming accounts (and more, like Steam, as we can add them). But yes, you can also just log in with your existing account and never use those other methods. Nothing will change account wise for our more than 3 million current members.
Another cool thing? The navigation bar follows you as you scroll down. As you coast through content, you'll never have to scroll all the way back up to navigate the site. It'll always be right there. Further down the page on the right, though you can't see it here, are our giveaways, newly listed games, the forum post tracker, recent videos and screens (including user submitted screens, video, etc.). That's one of the coolest parts of moving to a new content management system: you guys will easily be able to submit new content of your own, new videos of your own, and we may even feature them on the front page.
This new site is a massive new step towards MMORPG.com lasting for another decade-plus. It simply needed to happen, probably even sooner, but it's a daunting task for a small indie team like us. So when the new site comes up on Wednesday the 22nd (God willing), don't be surprised to find bugs, inconsistencies, and lots of little things that need tweaking. There will be more additions and changes as we revise the site in coming weeks and months too. We'll have our suggestions and feedback threads ready and waiting for you all on the forums too.
We hope you'll enjoy the fresh look, improved features and sustainability, and overall more modern design. MMORPG.com started as little more than a forum over 12 years ago. Without you, MMORPG.com never would have become the site it is today.
To celebrate the launch of the new MMORPG.com, we'll be hosting a summer full of events with developers, publishers, and studios throughout the industry. Some of the biggest names in gaming will be hosting week long giveaways with new prizes every day. That is of course, once the dust settles on the new site, so stay tuned for the schedule of events.
In just five days, what's old becomes new again. Here's to 12 more years of wishing, hoping, lauding, whining, waiting, and kvetching about our favorite pastime. It's going to be a very interesting ride, on a very pretty new site.
Your faithful noob,