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So many mods want attention, but seem to go unnoticed. Why? Here are a few simple tips to get you and your project on your way!

Posted by ninjadave on May 28th, 2009
Basic PR.

This may seem like seemingly basic knowledge, but in this article are some helpful tips to get your project in the spotlight. Hopefully some start-up projects will find this knowledge very useful. While the entire point of this article is to help projects polish up projects, you should keep in mind that no matter how many watchers/views you have, you should always keep your focus on a solid release. With that in mind, lets get started!

Header Picture and Summary

The first thing viewers will see is your summary and the header picture of your project's profile.
This is pretty straight forward, but I'll briefly go over it anyway. A summary 'should' contain a summary of what your project is. (Surprise!) If not a summary, a clincher to keep the viewers interested. (Or both!) If you read the summary of a project and still have no idea what its about, then you have a problem.

Why not also polish it up as well? Images? Why not. Its easy to find projects that do this wrong, sadly.
If you do add an image to the summary, make it a low file size JPEG. Also try to not link it from other sites. Some sites are slower and will make an ugly 'pop-in'. No one wants that. Instead put it on your account profile, link it, and then delete it off your profile. The image is still linked, and you won't have account profile clutter.

A header picture (hopefully) has something pertaining to your project. Try to aim for something very relevant. Your making an action game? Why not make something action oriented? How about some concept? The header also supports GIF files, so even animated pictures will work. Get creative! Maybe even use some HTML to make something snazzy!

Gallery and Videos

Next up, the gallery! The image gallery is a great place to add images of your progress, it is not a great place to jam everything project related. Why? Showing progress is great, but almost no one is willing to dig through hundreds of images only to find old outdated work. Try to keep media focused, and when something is updated, get rid of the older stuff to make room for the new. Same goes with models and the like. Instead of 10 images of the same model, why not put the same model in different angles on the same image. You'll see it looks very nice and cleaned up. (From Neotokyo)

Videos are a little different, as you won't have nearly as many videos. You should, however, wait for a video to get authenticated by the admins before you link them in a news post. Sometimes the authentication process takes days, prepare for anything.

News articles

A 'huge' part of getting viewers is front page news posts, or news posts in general. I heard from several Moddb'ers that they can't seem to get on the front page. To get something on the front page, all you need to do is follow a few guidelines.

  1. Link relevant information. Talking about the Quake 2 engine? Why not link it to clue any readers in? No need to link it every time either.
  2. Use the same image size. Mashing whatever cool picture you can find makes it look sloppy. Organising media into ordered sections with same sized pictures makes work look cleaned up.
  3. Spell check.
  4. Don't post small undeveloped things. A cool texture or a 10 minute gun model won't hit the front page. If it does, you won't get many viewers.
  5. Organise the media! Separate it into sections, maybe even much like this article.

Interviews

Here's a good idea. Lets say you've got a few news posts going and you need more. Did you know you can toss a PM to the ModDB admins and arrange for an interview, or even get a news post in the headlines? No, those projects are not 'super special' with 'special' rights. They just asked! Did you also know the Indie Devs group conducts interviews/reviews/previews, purely for independent and standalone games? (Helpful articles too!) Did you know there are several groups around Moddb that do the same? Shockingly, many miss these helpful groups for who knows what reason.

A last topic to cover is: Comments.

Comments

As a PR/Developer/Modder, please avoid arguing with other commentors. This makes a team terribly unprofessional and inexperienced looking. Instead of arguing with a particualrly demeaning comment, just go ahead and delete it. Don't waste your time. People that try to rile up an arguement are called trolls. (If you didn't know.) Every project is bound to meet trolls. Also, try not to flood your own media with your own comments. Its perfectly fine if you do, but when comments get into the 50's and 100's, half of which being your own, its a pain to go through it. Comment on questions and to make point outs to help clear up a situation, as this is helpful.

Stats

If you go to your mod profile (Or any mod profile for that matter), clicking on the views will bring up the stats menu. (Or type /stats at the end of mod's URL)
You'll find a chart like this:


This nice graph chart shows news posts and videos, and how much attention you got. Use this to your advantage. Lets say an early news post got a lot of attention, but a later news post was barely noticed. What did the media contain? What really caught people's attention? This simple but effective tool can help plan for future media releases, and generally helps to know how much attention your project is getting.

Special Thanks

That wraps up some things you should know for getting a project recognised on ModDB. Yes, most are common sense, but hopefully this helps some mod teams out a bit. I used several reference mods/groups in this article. They've done some great eye catching work. If you didn't follow the links, they are all here:

Thanks for reading!

Post comment Comments
kburts
kburts May 28 2009, 9:28pm says:

thankyou!

+4 votes     reply to comment
Tokoya
Tokoya May 28 2009, 10:14pm says:

Great article

+4 votes     reply to comment
matthewdryden
matthewdryden May 28 2009, 10:55pm says:

This is a great start article - I hope there is more in this series!

+3 votes     reply to comment
INtense!
INtense! May 28 2009, 10:58pm says:

Great article, I just want to let the indie and mod teams know that we will basically do anything we can to help you spread the word. So please take advantage of all we offer and contact us if you want to try something new. Who knows... maybe we want to try your idea too!

+6 votes     reply to comment
jeffr
jeffr May 29 2009, 12:23am says:

Thanks for noticing the Overgrowth page ;)

+4 votes     reply to comment
ben72227
ben72227 May 29 2009, 12:59am says:

Everybody knows if you *really* want to get your mod noticed, it has to have zombies in it ;-p

+6 votes     reply to comment
TheHappyFriar
TheHappyFriar May 29 2009, 9:28am replied:

that @ have "source" in the project somewhere. :D

Or use an existing IP. Those two always get quite a bit of attention (good or bad)

+3 votes     reply to comment
Samuk
Samuk May 29 2009, 2:48am says:

Thanks again for that great Solitude preview !

+2 votes     reply to comment
Dragonlord
Dragonlord May 29 2009, 2:11pm says:

Nice article... but doesn't help. Why? What does it help to have news posts of the right quality if front-page-hoggers push the news post of hard working projects off the front page using trash news ( or non-news... those guilty know who I mean ) or blocking them right up front ( too many news, dropping some "by preference" ). It's nice to have the facilities but many can't even use it properly since they are killed by the hoggers.

+3 votes     reply to comment
ninjadave
ninjadave May 29 2009, 9:04pm replied:

Unfortunately you are right. Also, ben72227 and TheHappyFriar, in a sarcastic way, pointed out a sad but true nature of (many) mod players.

My only reasoning is that even with hoggers, a structured article will surely help a project get noticed more. As INtense said, and I will say it too, if a project is wanting to get noticed we can help.

I also dislike the 'preference' rules that will block out potentially great mods, but that is the viewer's choice.

You can also look at it like this: More watchers doesn't mean a better mod. In fact many of dozens of watchers that rack up the views on a front page hogging project's page are usually 'one day members', or at least inactive.

Besides, tough competition is no excuse for poor PR work.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Rigelblast
Rigelblast Jun 2 2009, 3:09pm says:

This tutorial is great since it has many helpful tips and lots of new information. The contents are also well-categorized (i.e. News, Interviews, Comments, Stats, Gallery, Summary, etc.) which is a really good thing.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Doc-Holliday-
Doc-Holliday- Sep 23 2009, 3:28pm says:

Nice Article. ive been wanting to make a mod for grand theft auto vice city but i have no tools for modding do you guys know of any tools i could use?

+2 votes     reply to comment
ninjadave
ninjadave Jan 5 2010, 9:23pm replied:

You might be better off asking on the forums.

Moddb.com

+2 votes     reply to comment
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