A Fresh Start

UnrealNorth has been around for ages, and it has been a very long time since both the layout or the underlying code was changed. Today we launch the latest version of our beloved site. The main focus of the site has not changed: it provides the latest information regarding Unreal Tournament, provides a platform for discussion between players and a place to find old friends that have returned to the game. So what has changed?

Besides the obvious layout changes unused functionality from the old site has been removed. We have removed user blogs, clans and clan blogs. They were either misused, unused or only used by spammers. We have also removed “articles” which were meant to be longer posts. The latest article that still featured the main page did not change for a couple of years. Instead we make use of the wasted space to have a layout that makes use of the screen estate.

The forum is still around, although has improved functionality (or it has finally caught up with one can expect from a normal forum). It has better moderation capabilities. You can follow up on topics by subscribing to them. And last but not least there are sticky posts (welcome to 2014 baby!).

The old site can currently be found here: http://185.24.220.38/, and should get a proper url once I get the settings sorted out :)

 

Currently we are looking for dedicated writers for the site. Although users can submit content themselves I would like to ensure that the latest cup announcements also make it to this site. If you are interested in helping us out contact us, either via the contact forum, irc or just leave a message. It certainly helps if you are “known” in the community. We also welcome people that want to do a series (e.g. a guide to duelling, how to stream your game with twitch) that can span multiple posts. There is not that much activity in the Unreal landscape to provide a constant stream of news, and these kind of articles may attract newer people to play your favourite game type as well as make sure the site does not stagnate.

For the future we are planning on organising an UnrealNorth cup, which should be a good practice for the upcoming Cluex.org cup during the summer holidays. We are planning on doing them during the easter holidays. Currently the planned format is a mix of duel and tdm (probably just 2on2 so that enough teams can sign up). We also hope to broadcast the games on twitch so that Unreal Tournament becomes a bit more noticed by other gamers (QuakeLive gets 2k viewers, or even 4k during DreamHack). If you want to help us out do not hesitate to contact us.

We will be continuously improve the site. On the todo-list we find a way for users to submit their own demo’s to the site, although we will limit them to demos of official games. Reasoning behind this is that too many average demos just hide the good ones. Next will be some cosmetic changes. Currently you see some of the WordPress backend when you create an account or change your profile. These should be incorporated in the site.¬†Suggestions are always appreciated if you feel like something is missing.

PissedNumlock

I have been playing Unreal Tournament for over 10 years (or more if you count little me playing UT99 on my mother's laptop). I have been contributing for this site for over 8 years, and have been the main administrator for the last couple of years.

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18 Responses

  1. Trixst4r Trixst4r says:

    For this UnrealNorth cup, can anyone participate? Like US players? As much as I love ut, our community in NA can suck my dick personally, with all the failed tournaments. You guys show some great initiation for tournaments, and you also have a huge active community, especially for tdm and 1v1. We mostly have tam players who cry about power ups and the whole point of skill in the game of having a few weapons instead of all of them. But if you allow NA players, that would be awesome, if not that’s cool, no hard feelings. Just curious is all :D

    Just testing out the site and posting randomly :P

  2. PissedNumlock says:

    Personally I would not mind, main problem obviously is the ping and european players that do not want to play with netcode. So yes, you would be able to register but you would only be able to play with netcode if your opponent agrees.

  3. Trixst4r Trixst4r says:

    I understand the ping difference and euros don’t care for netcode. I just thought, since the game is where it is now and with the support you guys are continually pouring into it, I wouldn’t mind lending myself and some other NA players to hopefully play to keep this game going.

  4. ShX ShX says:

    I’m not really an expert in website coding, so forgive me, if such parts of the ‘ideas’/'suggestions’ I will post, are not possible or extremely hard to be involved into WordPress environment.

    First of all, the header is pretty simple and I believe that having an individual logo as for UN would be a cool thing to put into the title of the website. It could be even arranged in some other, specific way which I am unable to invent right now, but I would not leave that area with only written text.

    The second thing is, the news-images are way too big. All you can see, is an image, not even a small piece of text (at least here, at my notebook). The width of it is pretty correct, I would only lower the length by 60%.

    The icon showing how many comments were written (on a news-image), has not really great quality and does not matches with the main color-there of the website. It’s also little bit illegible.

    The news-image is not visible once we’re into the news-item. Would be cool if that image followed inside the article from the main-page.

    Also, in my opinion, the font-size is kinda too big, which makes the text taking too much space in the whole website.

    What about showing the name of an article poster?

    Also, what about replacing the avatars with a national flags? Or at least adding them anywhere to the profile.

    Still, take it only as my personal point of view and only as suggestions. I believe once with an use of new version of UnrealNorth, I will bring some more suggestions/ideas, because this website is worth any feedback. Thank you for providing such an awesome work PissedNumlock!

  5. skie skie says:

    Looks promising, but it’s a bit bright/white compared to the old site.

  6. zech zech says:

    Well, first of all Good job PN!

    Second, I agree with everything ShX has posted and I also want to add a few points:

    - In the header, it still says “Your Guide To The UT2004 Community”. Well this was fine when this site was founded almost ten years ago, but now it should just read “Your Guide to the Unreal Tournament Community”.
    - I can’t see the number of replies? Maybe I’m just blind.
    - On the right side, in the “Recent Topics” area it reads [Topic] by [User], whereas at “Recent Replies” it reads [User] on [Topic]. I find that kinda confusing honestly and it should be the same for both.
    - Honestly, the entire area looks rather silly and needs an overhaul. No offense, but it looked much better at UN v2.0. For instance, it would be helpful if the Topic would be in bold font; for better visibility.
    - Speaking of visibility, Light gray on a rather bright background is very hard to read
    - I too miss the flags. I always thought that’s what made UN kinda unique. I always liked to see where the other guy I was communicating with was from.
    -Another thing I really, really miss is the ability to rate and discuss files and especially Demos! Not to mention the ability to see the best rated files/demos and of course the download count for each file and demo. You plan to have users upload their own demos? Well, that’s okay as far as I am concerned, BUT imagine how much fun it’d be to let other users rate and discuss your playing style (unless of course you’re a complete noob and play like shit… well, prepare yourself to get burned).
    - The site doesn’t feel “Unreal” one bit, but I’m sure that’s going to change rather soon-ish? :/

  7. PissedNumlock says:

    Regarding the colours: suggest better colours and I’ll change them. I am pretty colourblind (daltonism and a bit more).
    I agree that the site should file a bit more unreal (and not like a generic blog/newssite). I guess a decent logo that features some unreal content would help, or a proper background. Unfortunately I am not a designer, and no one responded to me asking for designers.
    I’ll look into making the right hand side better.
    You can see the number of replies of a news item in the top right corner of the image.

    I agree that having people comment on files is useful, on the other hand the last comment on a demo on the previous site was made a couple years ago :p.

  8. ACo says:

    At first i loved the fact of a new thing, and enjoyed the global style.
    But i gotta admit i’m a bit lost now on the website. Maybe updates will make it more clear.
    And everything deleted then ?

  9. PissedNumlock says:

    Well, the old site is still there, but I have not transferred any of the data.

  10. Kane274 says:

    Well first of I’d like to thank you for your effort! Really is appreciated :)

    I also would like to give some input :)
    + WordPress is great ;D also good for the future
    + I like that the Page is modern
    + Great forum

    - I think the page should have a bit more UT in it :)
    - For some reason I don’t like the right part of the page (with recent news etc.) (maybe the division should be more clear?)
    - Hope some of the old content will be here

  11. PissedNumlock says:

    I think the widget would be better if it just had topic name and number of replies, and thats it. On the previous site I never had any issues knowing whether I topic was changed or not. Feel like the nickname takes up too much place. Both ‘recent topics’ and ‘recent replies’ should just be merged into one. But I am working on it :p

  12. Organ_ic. Organ_ic. says:

    Awesome almost makes me go back to UT 2k4 scene again, geez I miss times in iNfantry. :/

  13. mogly says:

    hey! it’s too bad that all the funny posts which included whines etc. are gone now. also the most important news are gone. i know pissednumlock, that you would say – no problem, there is still a way to reach the old unrealnorth. but it’s not the same. but that’s not all. i really don’t see this “new” unrealnorth as a revolution. this page is a simple wordpress theme lol. now it looks more like a blogging page than as a unreal tournament community page. why is it so important nowadays to realease new stuff? unrealnorth was such fine as it was. now it is just a random fucked up wordpress blogging system. gg nice!

  14. dane4ka says:

    why whywhy why the fck did you decide that the old good UN needs a change to this wordpress raw ugly whitey blog

  15. dane4ka says:

    seriously, change it back. if you don’t see it, make a poll mate

  16. BIG-A says:

    Howdy! nice work pissednumlock! even though i loved the old site this can turn out to be pretty good to.

    Greetings to u all!

    Keep Unreal North and UT alive!

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