Portfolio Move: Third time's the charm!
Well, they say the third time is the charm, and I'm really hoping so, because I'm not a huge fan of all these portfolio moves. Long story short, the last portfolio I was using was meant to solve problems from the first portfolio (i.e. not getting my point across, not showing enough stuff), and it did. Here's the problem, solving my problems created new problems of it's own, which my friends (thank you everyone) pointed out. The biggest ones included that this latest template, well, it kind of sucked for what I needed it to do. And when I tried to force it, well, things got messy and everything fell apart. So here we are, at the third attempt. Honestly, this blog post really only exists because I need to test the blogging features again, so I'm just going to detail why I switched and what this new portfolio hopefully is going to get across, and what will happen in the next few days.
Here's what went wrong.
Well, I lie. It DIDN'T suck if I kept my window in the perfect size, using the perfect settings, and didn't adjust the view at all. Then, I had a perfectly good looking portfolio that was honestly doing, well, too much. As my friends pointed out, half of the stuff I had, I didn't really need to have. Don't get me wrong, having a live twitter feed showing my past three tweets was cool, but what would suffice would be to simply show that I have a twitter (@nick_joebgen, go find me), and maybe show an icon that redirects to it. Will I try it again? Of course, I'm crazy like that. But at least this time I know that I don't need to add flash to hide the imperfections of my website, and quite frankly, the last portfolio had a lot and adding in flashy things made it worse. Whenever I'd adjust the page, everything would shift and look out of alignment, which led to a sloppy looking page. To make matters worse, I had to set up a manual page for mobile phones and ask visitors to click on it, just to see my page in mobile. That, in this day and age, is just no good and really needs to burn in a special circle of Diablo's realm. So basically, solving my first problems led to a whole bunch of new and irritating ones. Here's what should happen, and hopefully this new setup works.
What should happen (in theory)
Clear, concise, WORKING landing page
You hallowed viewers (no, that's not sarcasm), should be treated to a better homepage that doesn't overload you with info and ask you to resize your browser just to fit MY needs. This new portfolio revamp, in theory, should fix that problem and let you browse my page using whatever browser window size you like.
Actually works with mobile (!!!)
Yes, I've tested this myself. Using my phone, I'm able to see that the website automatically switched itself to the mobile version. I even pulled out my tablet and, well, found the first issue. As long as my tablet is not in landscape mode, everything works. There's still an issue if I do flip to landscape, but I'm looking into the fix that I'm sure exists.
Better layout that doesn't bleed (almost literally)
Everybody who's built a portfolio knows that layout is everything and if the overall layout is sloppy, the contents will be as well. This new portfolio seeks to rectify that situation with a better navbar, no overlaps, and nothing appears to be bleeding together. I've also gotten rid of the infernal twitter feed for the moment because, being completely honest, that caused it's own set of bugs that aren't worth it. This new portfolio is even rocking a stylish orange and white look, very 2015.
Plan for the future
I've determined that a few things need to happen, in the near future. Well, I should at least try them because if I don't, I may not know what I'm missing. I'll be setting up a true landing page that will show off some action shots of my levels and games, with some other cool things. I'll then hopefully be able to have a separate page for projects and have two tabs in the same section, one for industry projects and one for personal stuff. Right now, I do have both pages, but they are located in different areas and I'm hoping that isn't too much of an issue to find.
I also need to start posting more, and not just about games. Yes, game design and games I'm playing will be the primary topics, but I also want to branch out because I'm more than just a game-developing zombie. I do other weird and nerdy things (okay, fine, I cosplay. I'm not embarrassed to say it) and they should be documented as well. After all, my feeling is that a person with a lot of different interests and activities make for the best designers, because we've got experiences to share and stories to tell. By playing soccer when I was twelve, I think I saved at least three different kingdoms by imagining a war waging on the field (and the only way to win was score goals obviously). Okay, that made no sense, but I've also been staring at this portfolio almost all day.
Okay, I think that's the plan. I'm really just going to hope that whatever issues I find (because, everything has issues) are easily fixable and that this is going to work out. I'll be asking a lot of people to review it in the coming days and see what fundamental issues can be found with the site. My friends have been the best critics of me, and I'm trusting them to not let me down this time. Whelp, cheers everyone!