Obsidian Portal Launch Feedback



  • Keryth987
    Posts: 1,047
    OK. After 16+ hours of work, Shadows Over New York is MOSTLY back up and running.

    It was a daunting task, and one I still feel was unnecessary.

    However, now that it is nearing completion, I can say that I like MOST of the changes.


    This issue of 3-5 min opening the image selector, and it crashing my browser 95% of the time is not a good one

    I am a patient person. If the Government can;t get the healthcare site working, why should I not give OP some leeway?

    And it's nice to see the admission that not enough time was given to testing.

    anyhow, rant over

    Keelah Se'lai,
    "Shadows Over New York":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/shadows-over-new-york
    "Campaign of the Month - July 2013":http://blog.obsidianportal.com/shadows-over-new-york-julys-campaign-of-the-month/

  • HumAnnoyd
    Posts: 300
    I am with Keryth on this. My sites are all image intensive and not being able to add any images is a pretty serious issue. Hopefully it will be figured out soon. If not sooner.

    November 2012 CotM:  Dresden Files RPG: The Emerald City

    June 2016 CotM:  Star Wars: Rise of the Infinite Empire

    JUNE 2020 CotM & 2020 CotY:  Mass Effect Accelerated

    FEBRUARY 2022 CotM & 2022 CotY: Dresden Files Accelerated:  Emerald City-Requiem 

    Current Campaigns:  Traveller Osmium Buccaneers: Pirates of Drinax, Cyberpunk 2077 Accelerated

  • GamingMegaverse
    Posts: 3,001
    @Micah- "I’ve made some big mistakes with this launch, and it was definitely too rushed. We should have identified these issues and dealt with them on the Beta site prior to launch. But, I was eager to get the site launched and move forward. Once the dust settles, I’ll do a more in-depth analysis of what went right and wrong."
    Thank you so much! It means a lot to admit that there were mistakes! As I have said before, I think overall the changes are good- it just was executed poorly. Still a huge fan of the site!
    Not going anywhere,
    "A God...Rebuilt":https://a-god-rebuilt.obsidianportal.com
    "OP's COTM April 2012":http://blog.obsidianportal.com/a-god-rebuilt-aprils-cotm/

    Just trying to help out.

  • dr_venture
    Posts: 32
    Can someone point me to how to fix the background color of the page code editing fields. Langy graciously provided the CSS for setting the text black, I added the code for the bg to be set to white when you're not using the field... but when you click in the field to edit the contents, the color changes back to dark grey. The problem now is that my cursor is almost the same color that has been chosen for the BG color when editing, so it's extremely hard to edit text now. I just want the field to be white and stay white, and in nosing around the page code it wasn't obvious how to do that. I have a mountain of work to do just updating the campaign contents, it's made doubly hard when I have to mess with OP interface.

    Micah, thanks for the comment about having made some big mistakes - yeah you did, but it happens in dev work... I know I have done so, too. It's most important for those who feel aggrieved to hear it, understand that there is real recognition on the developer's part, then everyone can start moving beyond the first emotional response. I appreciate the changes you guys are already putting into place - seeing the mistakes slowing easing and the site coming together really helps - thanks to you all for your continuing work. And thanks for the fix to the colors for the non-existent wiki pages! Just a quick note: the preview pages are still using some other hiliting scheme that is different from the site scheme and still doesn't show the undefined pages. Believe it or not I use that feature there, but I can live with it for now.... just FYI :)
  • chaemera
    Posts: 2 edited November 2013
    1- Campaign Forums appear to have lost all value & use in organization. Just a mashup of most recent postings.

    Useless for an active game.

    I'd love it, if I could just find my old sub-forums. But, without that layer of organization, it's worthless to me.

    2- Finding and controlling settings for any given thing is difficult. Especially if you're trying to get rid of those atrocious default colors.

    3- Why does the usable screen size keep changing? Why can't I have that beautifully expansive space from the Dashboard and Forums on the Front Page, Wiki, and Adventure Log? You waste half the space on nothing with these pages. It's as though you expect people to use 16:9 screens on the forum, but 4:3 in the wiki. I use the same monitor for everything.

    4- Tool tips. I have no idea what your buttons do until I click them. This shouldn't happen in 2013. Either the purpose should be intuitively obvious, or the five seconds to add a tool tip should have been taken during development.

    5- Why is there even LESS organization to the character's page, rather than more? It was bad enough having all NPCs lumped together, no ability to create sub-categories other than to go back to the wiki. If I want to look through characters, I want to go straight to the tab labelled "characters" and have an easy, organized, means of sorting and searching through them. By type, allegiance, etc. Not by "alphabetical and name search and nothing else".

    6- The right-hand navigation which had quick-links and tags. Where is that? Why would you ever take a website dedicated to aiding organization of a game and take the organization out of the website?

    All that being said, the top-bar and side-bar navigation are wonderful, and powerful tools. Side-navigation of posts in the forum would be nice. If I could filter by sub-forums. Sorry to keep harping on that, but that's sort of the POINT of having FORUMS. Organization.
    Ultimately, my experience looking at the relaunched OP is "two steps forward, three leaps back".

    I hate to join dragoner's completely negative side of things, but without sub-forums and tool tips, at a minimum, this isn't worth my money. In no small part because I could not see introducing a campaign through Obsidian Portal to non-users. It simply lacks an intuitive (see items #1, #4, and #5) or professional feel (see #3, #5, and #6). I'm not going to push for a refund, but I'm on the fence about continuing my subscription. The way I see it, if these problems still exist the next time I try to put together a campaign, I won't use OP. And, if I'm not using it, I won't keep paying for it.
    Post edited by chaemera on
  • MadDogMaddux
    Posts: 10
    Oh hey, you know what would be LOVELY?

    The ability to collapse the Forum list on the left hand side within Forums. That way I could navigate the forums quickly, then collapse the nav panel for more reading/input space.

    Come to think of it, a lot of those sidebars would benefit from a collapse option so that those who want more space can have it, and those who want more side bars can have it.
  • Odhinn_AllFather
    Posts: 6
    The dust is still settling. Why is there dust in the first place? The New Obsidian Portal is a completely different environment. It sounds like a lot of people were not expecting that. I sure wasn't. When the dust finally settles I would like to have the option to customize my campaigns back as closely as they were before. Yeah, I did put a lot of work into those pages and I'm not happy that it is gone but more importantly they reflected the vision of my group. Now it seems like a facebook or my space page. The biggest downfall is that my players hate it. If they don't want to use it what is the point? Big huge obsidian portal supporter and I'll wait to see what is fixed and isn't, but without some ability to shape it into what works for the DM and the Players, I see my campaign's use of this site diminishing.
  • MadDogMaddux
    Posts: 10
    Also, has anyone commented on the banner resizing issue for the main page?

    Widening the workspace does this, but even at 1024, the appropriate width/height gets truncated.

    The banner for my campaign ( https://chicago-lightning.obsidianportal.com/ ) is 700x288, yet even at 1024 width in the workspace, the top and bottom get trimmed off. At wider workspace width, even more of the top and bottom gets truncated.

    On top of that, the smaller version for it produced in the upper right hand corner of Dashboard, etc, is truncated as well.

    Maybe I read it wrong? Is the new banner size SMALLER than 700x300? If it's not, why is the banner being truncated?
  • Bondoid
    Posts: 35
    The new banner dimensions since the reforge are 1000×220

    "Legacy of Fire":https://our-legacy-of-fire.obsidianportal.com/
  • bluesguy
    Posts: 127
    WOW... I can see why there are so many people who are very upset about the Reforge launch and how it affected their campaign sites. In my case, I avoided doing any real customization. I stuck with the basics and a bit of CSS. I wanted to focus on content (text and some images) and 'simple' layout. In my mind content is always more important than a 'fancy layout'.

    I can also understand why people would be very upset about losing comments and sub-forums. IMO that is content. I would be very angry if I had lost content. In fact if I had lost content I would be leaving OP unless they could restore my content and refund my subscription for each month (partial) that my content was lost.

    Last but not least I have been in the business of software development is 1984. I have built some mission critical systems (mission critical = how people DIE if it fails) over the years. This is not typical for a mission critical system ;-). But it is pretty typical for web based software that I have been a part of - speed to deliver is usually more important than quality. And it is better than the US Health Care website roll out LOL....

    For the development team, I hope you have a good bug priority & severity & tracking system and automated testing & regression testing tools. Keep up the hard work. It will pay off. I am sticking around to see how it all turns out - just don't lose my content :-).
  • MadDogMaddux
    Posts: 10

    Thanks man, I couldn't find that anywhere. :/
  • DreadGazebo
    Posts: 218 edited November 2013
    *UPDATE: What is currently (as we speak) being fixed and should be deployed this evening:*

    * Adventure log comments being restored and re-enabled
    * The ability to delete forum posts (ability to delete entire threads will follow in an update to follow)
    * Ability to delete banners

    *Coming soon:*
    * Proper guidelines/documentation for campaign banners (size ratios, resizing as browser grows/shrinks)

    We are aware of many other issues including image upload problems and more that are currently slated to be worked on soon, just wanting to reinforce that/make it known that by no way is this update a full on set of patch notes or anything like that. I'm trying to keep everyone in the loop and juggle lots of other stuff so please bear with me.

    *We are making final decisions about subforums and will make an announcement regarding them either today or tomorrow. We will also be having a larger forum discussion by the end of the weekend to solicit further usability tweaks and suggestions from the community.*

    As far as bug reports go, please keep them coming and please keep them as clear/concise as possible, include screenshots if you can, OS versions, browser versions, etc. That being said, I have a bug list I've begun comprising from having answered everyone's support tickets and will be adding more as I go through my next batch of tickets this evening (if you haven't seen a response from me yet you should after this evening). That's all for now, expect me to chime in more later during the wee hours of the morning.
    Post edited by DreadGazebo on
  • dr_venture
    Posts: 32
    Thanks Dread... hang in there.
  • DreadGazebo
    Posts: 218
    One last update! *Vanguards have been chosen* and will also be receiving an email from me later this evening, by later this evening I mean (early tomorrow morning) depending on your perception of things. Stay tuned!
  • Odhinn_AllFather
    Posts: 6
    Well, you guys are probably going through what the administrators of the Health Care Exchanges websites are going through but there are some more things I'd like to add:

    On the campaign search it only features the big games like D&D and Pathfinder. You used to be able to see all the different games listed. My campaigns are AD&D 1st Edition and Warhammer 2nd and there is no way to find them without surfing through hundreds of pages or knowing the game name.

    Second my locater does not appear on the "campaigns near you" map.

  • Cernig
    Posts: 60
    It appears to be impossible to delete a campaign right now. I've one I want to lose from my list - it's done playing, will never be played again, and isn't worth the effort to recover its looks post-reforge - but I keep getting a gateway error.

    Also - pictures. So many of us use art to make our campaigns pop, and being able to only upload a picture once in four tries and after several minutes wait is severely sub-optimal. Do the development team know what's wrong with this so they can let us know why and maybe a rough when on a fix?
  • Gromnar
    Posts: 5
    I really hope subforums are coming back...
  • dragondreams
    Posts: 24
    I stayed away this week because my players had such overwhelmingly negative comments. Even those who are gracious to a fault and have worked in the SaaS online /web development industry for more than a decade - as most of them, including me, do (ok, well, most of them have actually been developing since long before that but specifically web apps we go back to '99 or so - hello DotCom, ;-) ). Tonight I finally decided to brave viewing my beloved content.

    I don't know what to say that is constructive. I've tried to play around with the advanced section to make the overall UI better, but that really does not address the underlying issues.

    Is there any possible way to spin up the old code and a copy of the content on an AWS instance? How much would I have to pay to make that possible?
  • Micah
    Posts: 894
    I’ve deployed a fix for the missing adventure log comments. Leaving those out was a mistake on my part, and I apologize. As you’ll see, everything is still there.

    That brings us to the big one that I’ve been thinking over: subforums. To make a long story short, the subforums will be coming back. I’ll probably get that out sometime mid next week.

    The long(er) story is that I had a vision for how I wanted the forums to be used. Unfortunately, this conflicted with how a lot of people were already using them. I should have done a better job of understanding that before making drastic changes. I see now where I was wrong, and I’m going to fix it.

    Beyond that, I’ll be looking into the image upload issues, and we’re working on a guide to help understand the way the banners resize as you change the browser window.

    Keep the bug reports coming, and I appreciate your patience.
  • MarkGiguere
    Posts: 53
    Hi Micah!

    Thanks for the update! I would like to point out a minor issue as you're working on the forums: When you delete all the items in a thread, the thread itself doesn't go away. It says 0 items but it's still there and i can see no way to remove it.

  • bluesguy
    Posts: 127

    In my world saying this "The long(er) story is that I had a vision for how I wanted the forums to be used. Unfortunately, this conflicted with how a lot of people were already using them. I should have done a better job of understanding that before making drastic changes. I see now where I was wrong, and I’m going to fix it." is huge.

    Count on my to stick around to see how things turn out. I am still glad I supported the Kickstart effort.
  • Gromnar
    Posts: 5
    Glad to hear the subforums will be back. Will our posts automatically go back to the subforums they were previously in?
  • Keryth987
    Posts: 1,047
    The image embedding issue is a big one.

    Also, can we get the campaign comments page back?

  • Pils
    Posts: 149

    Because of the new layout, logs are becoming longer, and It might help if the left menu and the right sidebar were fixed (we would not have to scroll a long time to navigate in the adventure logs for example).

    Or at least, an automatic "up" button...

    "Planescape Next":https://planescape-next.obsidianportal.com/: Glory? Majesty? You don't know the dark of it!
    "Dark Sun -- La Décade des Héros":https://dark-sun-a-trova.obsidianportal.com/: Face the Fire of the Dark Sun... a World ravaged by Sorcery!


    Dark Sun ● La Décade des Héros : Face the Fire of the Dark Sun... a World ravaged by Sorcery! (CotM - Dec 2012)

    Les Royaumes Oubliés : A D&D 5e old school style Forgotten Realms campaign!

    (And I'm so soooorry for my poor english...)

  • Taellosse
    Posts: 15
    I'm glad to see that necessary adjustments are being made so promptly. I'm particularly looking forward to the restoration of the subforums - the current arrangement is unfortunately virtually unusable as "forums," even if it would work pretty well as a sort of in-house chat log for short exchanges.

    I was wondering about a couple of things I haven't seen mentioned (if I overlooked it, I apologize): are there plans to enable some sort of sorting of the Characters page? While having them in columns so there's less wasted space is nice and all, mixing PCs with NPCs and GM-only characters, with no means of sorting them at all, is not very useful. Having the tag search at the top is nice enough, but particularly with respect to the PCs, it would be faster if they could just be sorted to the top. Also, regarding campaign maps - I know there were previously issues with server load on higher zoom levels - are there plans now to improve that? Additionally, it used to be possible to view the original map image, and now I can find no way to do this. Particularly if we cannot expect higher resolution zoom levels, this feature would be about the only way map images of any size can be useful.
  • GamingMegaverse
    Posts: 3,001
    Thanks Micah!
    Really appreciate the fact that you are owning the mistakes, and fixing them!
    Definitely staying for the long haul!
    Please bring back the comments page and the listing of campaigns by fan#....

    Just trying to help out.

  • Belrathius
    Posts: 206
    @ Odhinn_AllFather: I took a look, and when you select the "All Systems" button on the campaigns page, I see tons of listings, including the D&D 1.0 entry you mentioned. It may have perhaps been addressed or something, I don't know, but I can confirm it's not broken at the moment.
  • cuzinlox
    Posts: 1 edited November 2013
    OK so I finally got around to looking at all my pages for the campaign I GM and like almost everyone else that's posted, I have some issues and general comments - and most of them are repeats of others complaints/comments.

    1. Some things still work correctly for me, like my google docs links and youtube video links

    2. My group all use notebooks/laptops - NOT tablets - If you really want to appeal to mobile users, don't punish us who like the horsepower behind a real computer.
    BTW - one of my players accesses OP on his Samsung Galaxy 3 and he says that access is now a lot slower than it used to be - so something is not done right for mobile users anyway.

    3. The dashboard and forum pages use up my entire browser screens - which is a good thing since I can get to most everything pretty easily from there.

    4. I am not a fan of grey text on a white background - I'm 49 years old and my eyesight is not as good as it was when I as 20. PLEASE give us the option to change the text color - OR -change it back to black text.

    5. I use a lot of the in my posts to separate monologues, room descriptions, etc - and they show up in an even lighter grey color than the rest of the grey text on the site! This is unacceptable - It shouldn't change the text color at all - leave it black. And no I don't want to go back and add color tags into my posts where ever I've blockquoted - that would literally be hundreds of extra commands i'd have to modify for my 33 adventure posts plus my other pages.

    6. The calendar is messed up - I only see the dates of the first week in very, very light grey and nothing else for the month. My events appear to just hover in space under the day column they are happening on but not date is visible. AND NO I don't want to sync to google's calendar thingy - because I don't use a calendar except for my game events. I don't use outlook at home - only web-based email so have no need of syncing.
    It looks like you've used white text on a white background for the calendar - please fix asap
    Also when picking the times for the events a huge list of very far apart spaced times shows up instead of something much more compact which forces me to scroll down my page just to get to the times I want. - I get it, its spaced so people with touch screens can select times with ease - but looks really crappy on a real computer - Another argument for a separate mobile app

    7. When I go to My Ascendant Membership page all it tells me is that I am a reforge backer - there is nothing about when my subscription is due to expire nor anything about the extra months I am supposed to receive from being a backer (18 or so months extra I think it was) - I hope in the reforging you didn't actually LOSE this information and that you just didn't think of displaying it anymore for some odd reason. Please add this info back in asap.

    8. The gear symbol with the exclamation point in the middle (next to the mail icon) does absolutely nothing. What is it supposed to do - there's not even a popup tool tip that says what it is.

    9. Separating the PCs at the top was nice but doesn't make too much difference to me.

    EDIT: I started playing around with the settings and see that a lot of the width and color issues can be changed already, which is a good thing. And thanks for listening to the community with the changes you are implementing so far.
    Post edited by cuzinlox on
  • MadDogMaddux
    Posts: 10

    My campaign is up again! Thank you guys so much for hearing us about Adventure Log Comments!

    I know you guys have been busting your asses to respond to all the feedback you've been getting. I just want to say thanks.

    So. Thanks.


    Now if you'll excuse me, I have PCs to go torment. ;)
  • twiggyleaf
    Posts: 2,017

    Glad to hear the comments on Forums. Ours is one of the groups that uses Subforums quite substantially to catalogue.
    Now that the picture links seem to have been fixed, I must say I really LOVE the layout on the Character Tab. I wouldn't change a thing (apart from my own background).


    "I met a traveller from an antique land....."

    CotM May 2016: Mysteria: set in Wolfgang Baur’s MIDGARD.

    Previous CotM Aug 2012: Shimring: High Level Multiplanar Campaign

    Inner Council Member

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