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NG Frontpage Mockup

6/16/13 by test-object
Updated 6/16/13

Don't look into it too deeply, this is all for my own amusement, but I have redesigned how I think I'd prefer the Frontpage to look like.

LINK

I took out most of the browns and textures that 'plague' the current design and was inspired by both the old Newgrounds pages and some minor things I really like about the current one. The idea is that all is entirely streamlined. 1 big "utlraplayer" dominates the page and transforms from an audioplayer (which for the record is really cool on Newgrounds) to a flashplayer, to bigsized images etc.

Instead of having several giant blocks take up the screen, this design allows for 4 simple words (and 1 symbol) in the middle to have the frontpaged material scroll down on the bottom. Favoring something has been made supereasy with the little star on the upperright of the player. Under it, there is another star to like the author, as opposed to just the piece. These end up in your favourites list which you can also scroll through quite fast by simply clicking the star icon next to Audio.

TomFulp has always mentioned to the site how he loves motivating people to, you know, work. This is why Collabinate and Tutorial took prime places in the hotbar. They drastically lower the treshold of being active in the scene this way. Sadly, this did mean having the Community and Store move into more subtle territory, but I reckon they're noticable enough for those interested, especially if a bright yellow glow went over their bars if one went over it with the cursor. Store and Tutorial MIGHT be able to switch places though.

I'm not at all a programmer of any kind, so I am probably missing vital laws of coding. I can see heavy practical issues in this design, namely how you switch between videoplayers and then there is the huge problem how there's no real area for reviews or RATINGS. This player might as well just serve as a HUD where first all info appears on the author such as a couple smaller thumbnails surrounding the bigger one, the descriptions of the animations, etc News reports I figure might just end up in the Collabinator section. Either way, this is what I whipped up, if you have any suggestions or issues I missed with this design, shoot.

PS, Can someone make a HighQuality image of the new, cutesy tank public? Thanks :3


Comments

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TomFulpTomFulp

6/18/13

The tough thing with an ultraplayer is making it apply to everything... For example you can overlay a favorites button and author credits over a video, but it gets a lot trickier when it's a game, or a Unity or HTML5 game for that matter... Putting features like those in the surrounding layout makes it easier to maintain and function consistently among all the different portals.

6/18/13 test-object responds:

Tom, I'm going to redirect you to the "Redesign Newgrounds" thread I made last year and just now bumped:
http://www.newgrounds.com/bbs/top ic/1319523

More people have given their 2 cents, you might be interested.


jecjokerjecjoker

6/17/13

I'd love that layout if I could move widgets on my end... Would let me customize my experience.


NoLanLabsNoLanLabs

6/17/13

Instead of a placeholder, that big gray space could be collapsed until you click on something - then it would fold out to show the content. It would free up vertical space for the stuff down below to be more prominent. But it might make it less inviting or obvious that you could watch stuff right there, so I don't know.


NoisyNoisy

6/17/13

Actually i think your design is pretty good, but it's too minimalist and i think various things will be loosed.

Also, the actual design is something like how newgrounds "spirit" is , and it illustrate it perfectly.

But nice one though

6/18/13 test-object responds:

We need to be able to drop things, and I think these designs still hold the most vital things in place.


KenneyKenney

6/17/13

Gives me a bit of a Facebook vibe, it's not bad though. I like seeing these complete rearrangements of Newgrounds, there hasn't been any really mayor changes to the layout since the portal was introduced.

6/18/13 test-object responds:

It's indeed fun to hypothetically plan in a group.


TomFulpTomFulp

6/17/13

For anyone who couldn't click your link (something we gotta fix on our end):

http://www.newgrounds.com/dump/draw/9cf5c1e24c 1a3d4a0c0927ed40b712e3

Another thing to consider - you have that space filler with the NG logo, but realistically in this sort of layout, that might never be seen - it should probably always default to a piece of featured content. This would be more possible once we have content embedding available and address the "placeholder" visual that appears for a piece of content to avoid auto-playing... The way a YouTube video has a large screengrab of the video for example... We'll likely come out the gate with a box containing a thumbnail and some info about the submission.

6/18/13 (Updated 6/18/13) test-object responds:

I tried having a knack at the "ultraplayer" but it turned out dreadful.


dylandylan

6/17/13

Love your take on the FP, you seem to be on a bit of a design binge with this and NATA's page.

I love the idea of actually having the content play on the FP, rather than opening a new page. It's the kind of thing that would probably get people to watch/view more content overall, and could also help promote artists through having a fan button right on the FP.

There are some problems I see with it, though. Like Tom mentioned, there's the problem with multiple authors, though that could be solved without too much effort I would think.

The other problem I see is that there are only 6 of the FP's movies showing at one time. I'm assuming the fade out means the content scrolls, but that's still only 6 chances to catch a visitor's attention at any given moment. Maybe I'm not the normal case, but when I'm checking out the FP I often just quickly glance over it to see if any icons catch my eye. Trying to get people to stay long enough to see all the FP items might be a bit difficult with a scrolling layout.

Also, is the star on the 'ultraplayer' meant to be your feed/updates/whathaveyou? I think that would probably be the best feature, having a better, more interactive feed than we have now. If that player could have artist blog's/news/notifications/etc. in a way that really promotes interaction and personalization of the site (maybe the ability to read blogs, comment, and even review right on the FP, if those are at all practical), I think there would be a lot more activity on that front.

Newgrounds is such a personal site, where you are in a much more close relationship with content producers than somewhere like YouTube; emphasizing that personal aspect of NG could really draw in more members/more activity out of current members.

As a side note, your image has "A" rated content blocked, but "Trucker's Delight" is still there. Shame on you.

6/17/13 test-object responds:

I'm rockin this designing boat on a sea of eh... non... designed... things.

Of course this design has quite a couple issues, after all, it's just a mockup. I don't exactly know how big of an issue 6 visible thumbnails at a time is, considering there's only 12 FP-ed things. The star on the ultraplayer is indeed the equivalent of the favourites tab on FP right now. I could light up whenever one or more of your favourited authors have submitted something. Having that 'surprise' effect would be fun.

I'm sorry, I have failed not just as a designer, but also as a human being. *hangs himself*


TomFulpTomFulp

6/17/13

This mockup ignores TONS of important stuff but I thought I would toss it into the pool... It's an NG concept that is more intended to expand / contract to fit whatever your window size is, also something that could be more universal between mobile and desktop. Tried your nav suggestions but totally left out other important nav stuff that would need to be addressed.

http://www.newgrounds.com/dump/item/edcad0c21f 7b33d934b58fdc567be5ba

It demonstrates a more extreme simplification of NG, reducing a lot of the site identity to focus on browsing through the limitless content. I feel like there was a certain pride in the site that has lead to this really graphics heavy experience, when the pride needs to just be in the content and the site should deliver it as efficiently as possible.

Still, there's likely a point of oversimplification where the whole human aspect of the site kinda vanishes... Which works for a lot of web apps but might not be what an NG fan wants to see.

6/17/13 (Updated 6/17/13) test-object responds:

That looks really snazzy and smooth. But again, the colour bugs the hell out of me. What would make for an aesthetically interesting feature would be dynamic colouring where the entire HUD changes based on the topic you are on:

http://www.newgrounds.com/dump/dr aw/9cf5c1e24c1a3d4a0c0927ed40b712 e3

To be fair, the 'human' aspect of the internet has long since been gone. It worked in the earlier days when it all was still very small and primitive, but much like going from a village to a city, people tend to prefer privacy over companionship. You could still always reach out personally by the hand of newsposts of course.


TomFulpTomFulp

6/17/13

First off THANK YOU for taking a stab at this - I actually wish more artists on the site would do this sort of thing because if nothing else, there are lots of little inspirations to be had in seeing other peoples' concepts of an ideal site.

It would be interesting to see how much use the Collabinator would get if it was given that sort of priority. I actually do intend to remove the "Channels" button if it we can better promote those categories from within the GAMES and MOVIES sections. Ultimately though I want to remove the dropdown menus that appear when you roll over icons... Your design actually creates some space to accommodate this, since we would probably want a new Community "hub" page but also a direct link to the forums in the header, so instead of just "Community" and "Store" it could be "Forums / Community / Store."

The big thing does come down to the player and how we present information such as when something has 10 authors involved - there is a lot that could be done if we start building more features into the player itself, and that could be handy if people start embedding content on other sites - our player could carry over all the author info. It does create some new challenges with making all that informating work on mobile platforms, though.

There is a lot of great stuff we can do if we're willing to completely throw the old NG out the window. A lot of our difficulties come from people wanting to maintain old systems they care about, when anyone making a new site wouldn't bother with them in the first place.

Now that we have the search categories (forums / movies / games), I'm wishing we could go back to NOT having them, but instead having much better search results. I would have the Google API power our search results in a second if it wasn't cost prohibitive. Alternatively we could have a less attractive Google integration that still functions better. Realistically, I never use the NG search bar. I go to Google and type what I'm looking for, followed by "Newgrounds" (you can also do site specific searches but I don't even have to take it that far).

I hit the character limit so I guess I'll stop there for now.

6/17/13 test-object responds:

No problem, I have fun doing these : )

- I think there's a lot of hidden potential in the Collabinator. It's basically job advertisement and a buddy finder wrapped in one; something audiences now would appreciate a lot.

- I'd appreciate seeing the Channels button fly out the window. It's taking up space and I doubt anyone even bothers clicking it when you can easily find the series in the "More by this author" tabs or indeed from inside the other sections. In this design, playlists might even be integrated in the player as well as author info and more.

- A Forum tab next to the Community tab? Sure, why not.

- The player would need a SHIT ton of work and thought behind it could it be made, no doubt about that, although I don't think the multiple author issue is as big as you think it is. You could simply display the author's icons and names and when clicking them, more info on their work pops up.

- I personally don't mind the current search bar at all. It's small and gives the info nicely filtered. I can see why you would prefer a more varied and thorough search result though.

If there's one final major thing I think NG might benefit from, is a complete overhaul in colour scheme. I didn't address that in the mockup, but the brown, grey and orange just really aren't all that fresh and make navigating dusty and tiring. It would be nice having light tones.


So why you open up the page for the first time, the visitor is greeted to a large grey space?

6/17/13 (Updated 6/17/13) test-object responds:

the grey area can of course get a more slick, actually designed look.


LuisLuis

6/17/13

Its kinda weird that your design looks similar to one of the old mock ups for the redesign

6/17/13 test-object responds:

Huh...


RedNRedN

6/17/13

That's very nice,but you should put "WIKI" instead of "Tutorials" because it contains the creators ressources,some tips and tutorials to improve the content,in addition to the rules and guidelines.

6/17/13 test-object responds:

It's basically another word for it, since wiki doesn't exactly push people into making something. It sounds more like a history of NG.


VicariousEVicariousE

6/16/13

Niiiice!

6/17/13 test-object responds:

why thank you, asterix


I think the main problemwith the currrent layout is the background is distracting...i remember when Newgrounds didn't have those. It had solid backgrounds and occassional ad boxes, looked more organized imo. The background hurts my eyes, makes the sides of my eyes say "look this way" even though I don't want to.

6/17/13 test-object responds:

it WOULD be nice being able to shut them off. I hope that in this fandesign it looks less distracting and more like an addition. I already had to grey it out a bit to prevent this.


morcovmorcov

6/16/13

the buttons look dated, but the glossy shit thats here will look dated in 5 years too.

cool ideas tho

6/17/13 test-object responds:

it doesn't HAVE to have the glossy feel to it of course. This is merely the idea.

thanks


I like how clean it is. The current newgrounds is super distracting, even with the supporter perk.

6/16/13 test-object responds:

the supporter perk makes it tons better though.