Hello everybody, and welcome to the new Fuwanovel site. As you can see, it combines all our sites into one: Fuwanovel’s game database, the Fuwazette news blog, VNTS, the FuwaReviews team, and the VN Reviews Hub. It’s still very much in beta, so you’re going to see some rough edges, but they’ll be ironed out with time. I thought it was important to at least get it up so everyone could see the direction in which we’re heading.
If you have a second, I would really appreciate your feedback on the new site. You can find a quick survey here.
Some highlights of the new site:
- Everything is in one place! Woot!
- Game pages now integrate FuwaReviews, the Reviews Hub, and user reviews. See Chaos;Head or Ever17 for examples of how this will eventually work for all games.
- VNTS has its own header section
- I know the CMS and site design and can do site work all by myself, removing a progress bottleneck and freeing Nay up for more interesting projects
- Some new typography
- All links to the old sites should seamlessly forward to this new one, including to specific games, posts, and reviews. If you find an exception, let me know.
Now, all of this said, we’re in beta. That means some things are going to be a bit rough around the edges. We’ll be tweaking them over the next few weeks, and I think we’ll quickly reach an acceptable level of aesthetics.
My priorities going forward over the next week or so:
- Finalize some back-end permissions work and send out logins to a controlled beta group
- Set up mail system (so you can get emails when new posts go up, etc.)
- Update the damn “Game of the Month” and realted sidebar links
- Fix the front page slider dimensions
- Troubleshoot some performance issues
- Update VNTL-Moon
- More games!
- Reviews: Go through all the FuwaReviews team’s reviews and make sure they’re formatted correctly
A note about the Games Database:
The database, as it stands today, only contains a tenth of the initial batch of games I intend to put on the site. They’re mostly here as a proof of concept and to see how the site performs under load. So! As soon as things settle down and I feel confident about stability, I will be rolling out a number of games each day until we hit the full initial database content.
My goal is to have all MangaGamer, JAST, and Sekai Project games on the site, and index as many high-quality VNs on iOS and Android as possible.
You will also notice that I merged what used to be the Otome category into the fuller games database. Beyond the obvious concession that I’ve been compromised by the Grand Otome Conspiracy, it’s meant to show that we’re all one fandom. These sorts of divisions will, going forward, be represented by relationship shorthand (M > F; F > M; M > M; F > F; None; etc.)
A note about the “Academy” (Articles) Section:
This section is still a work in progress, and it’s really a big, hot mess. Consequently I took it offline until I can do something fabulous with it.
7/10 Updates (Mirrored in this forums thread)
- @Nosebleed – Change the rounded sort-by-release-type section on https://fuwanovel.net/visual-novels-browse/ – Um. No. But thanks. I’d prefer to see you suffer.
- @Silvz- New releases are showing stuff from 2014 – I mentioned this in my post. Right now I’ve only uploaded a handful of games to see how the site does under load.
- @Silvz – Moving twitter up – I’ll definitely play around with this over time. Right now the twitter widget isn’t working very well, anyway, so I’m going to eventually scope out other options.
- @Kenshin_sama – Strange options in the feedback survey – If it was perfectly implemented at-launch, it just wouldn’t have that buggy Fuwanovel goodness. ; P
- @Silvz – Search bars for custom post types (reviews, VNs, etc.) – Excellent point. Should be coming later today.
- @kingdomcome – Fixed with a crappy, temp fix. Thanks!
- @Decay – Forums VNTS menu item broken – Fixed!
- @Decay – One Small Fire Review is missing – Restored!
- @Decay – VNs retain odd information – Yep. Post time is actually useful: it’ll be used to mark the game’s or patch’s release, so that’ll stay. Author, however, is something a bit more complicated. It’ll either be removed, or it’ll be switched to represent the patch or publisher of the game.
- @Decay – SonoHana games reviews section oddities – Yep. I’ve already addressed that in each of the Sono Hana games’ description section. It’ll be specific to the SonoHana games, and isn’t something I expect to do with any other games or series.
- @Decay – Game page layout with possible sidebar – I agree with you, and that’s been my plan for the games pages: having an integrated sidebar with those bits that runs down the right side of the page, while removing the true sidebars. That’s why the individual VN pages’ sidebar is empty atm.
- @Amuzie – Request Desktop Site – Hm. You can do this on your phone’s browser, but you’re looking for a link/button on the site itself to do that, right? That’s something I’ll need to look into. Right now the site is set up to be responsive by design.
- @Decay – Review Header Images Problem – I’ll get them all straightened out today. I have to edit some stuff about each review, anyway
- @Decay – Limitations of WP games pages vs database – Well-said, and exactly right. A fuller database implementation IS coming, but it’s something we’re going to need to save up for. I collected a grand total of 22 bids to do the front site coding, and for what we wanted, the bill was going to be between $7000 for a relatively inexperienced coder to $25,000 for a mid-to-top-ish tier developer. (Just going to stop and point out that @Nayleen would absolutely qualify as top-tier, and consistently donates an unbelievable amount of time to help us out. We’re very, very lucky to have you, Nay. Thank you for all you do.) I’m scoping out custom coding to get a custom plugin to pull from a custom games DB and feed into a design template we can modify at any time. So that’s where we’re headed. At some point when things settle down and I can publish an updated site financial report, I’ll try and put all of this down on paper. But, yeah, we’re saving up for that. This is not the final solution.
Rejected with extreme prejudice and evil laughter:
- (Nothing, yet) (… tragically…)
- Back-end permissions are all set up
- Email system is up and working. (Well. Probably working.
- Updated sidebar game picks and July’s Game of the Month
- Rough-ish and prob temp fix for front page slider
- Some limited updates to VNTL-Moon
- Some aesthetic fixes
- Went through and fixed all FuwaReviews. If @solidbatman or @Decay want me to re-do a few banners to 16:9s (or so), just let me know which ones. I think the long banners are mostly okay. Some of Ryechu’s are ugly, now, but they’re part of the nukige series and I didn’t feel like looking around for alternatives. The other one I can remember, Decay’s Euphoria, actually looks kinda cool. But just let me know.
- Updated reviews back-end
- Minor emotional breakdown
- Figured out the problem with the Twitter section on homepage (Answer: Twitter sucks)
- Fixed and updated some podcast issues
- Fixed reviews hub display bug on really, really old android devices
- Tweaked some settings to improve performance
- Sat despondently in a near-empty room, pondering the Academy section
- VNTS podcast now has almost 700 downloads! (link)
- Import email subscriber lists
- Customize and add search options
- Take a look at Decay’s game page stuff
- Set up alternate layout options for custom post types to remove authors (etc.) from game pages and the like
- Imported email subscriber lists
- Tested email auto-notifications for posts and reviews
- Set up and published email subscription page
- With Nay’s help, set up SPF authentication to help emails avoid spam boxes
- Customized emails
- Wept silently
- Removed author and meta data from VN pages
- Removed author and meta data from About Us pages
- Came up with a reliable solution for the FuwaReviews “double star” issue
- Added search options to VNs and Reviews
- Successfully delayed looking at Decay’s CLANNAD VN because I’m evil
- Unsuccessfully banished Rooke, forever
- Updated a bunch of code on the homepage
- Read through a ton of feedback
- Investigate a broader, easier fix for the FuwaReviews “double star” issue
- Find a solution for Twitter’s crappy handling of embedded timelines
- Reformat VNs to be full-width pages per format B
- Build a near-final VN page design and put it up for feedback
- Avoid looking at Decay’s CLANNAD page at all costs.