Forums: Helping Hand > New Front Page

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Originating from another forum post regarding spoilers, we had some discussion as to whether the wiki gave appropriate spoiler warning. I think we could do a better job of making that clear on initial viewing, as the current warning is under the "Helping Hand" on a sidebar which isn't immediately viewable on all screen resolutions.

Furthermore we had a user make a request (here [1]) for a Faerûnian pantheon page as they saw it as vitally important information. Which got me thinking our portals are pretty outdated and thought we could better present some of our more essential articles.

Since this isn't really a policy or guidelines change, I wanted to bring it up here in the forums.

Proposed changes

  • To change our welcome message from :
    "A guide to the Forgotten Realms that anyone can edit, covering all editions and media."
To something along the lines of:
"A guide to the Forgotten Realms that anyone can edit, covering all sourcebooks, novels, games and other media of all editions."
If possible merge the "Welcome" sidebar to this welcome message as well.
  • Move the "Realmslore" section of the "Contents" sidebar front and center, in a item-bulleted box above the "Current Clack." This is a lot of the information we focus on, Realms-specific people, places, groups etc and IMO our best "featured" and "good" articles are usually related to this lore.
  • Place "New and Upcoming Releases" to the top of the sidebar, so its immediately viewable when new material is released. I think another small spoilers warning would be applicable here (even if its just parenthetical under the header).
  • I think our portal dropdowns could be replaced or supplemented with other links/category pages. I would suggest we include items, organizations and focusing locations to primarily areas of Faerûn.

These are just some thoughts! I'm not unhappy with the front page but I think these changes might present our best material front and center.

Ruf (talk) 04:40, November 6, 2018 (UTC)

Copied from Slack (28-Oct-2018):
  • I can squeeze the scroll images so that the word "media" appears on the same line as the rest of the sentence. Then I could add a spoiler warning under the Elminster quote and not increase the vertical size of the banner.
  • Or we could just reword that sentence to make it slightly shorter, if you don't want to alter the look of the scrolls.
  • Another possibility is to move Elminster's signature to the end of the quote.
Moviesign (talk) 13:59, November 6, 2018 (UTC)

Honestly, I think that we should get rid of the sidebar altogether. It resizes terribly, and we cannot predict the window size that viewers will be using.
~ Lhynard (talk) 16:48, November 6, 2018 (UTC)

I created the current Main Page design and developed it from earlier versions, but I did so with Monobook in mind, so yes, now it does need an update to Oasis. However, I maintain that flaws in the layout are strictly the flaws of Oasis or result from using Oasis and its excessive advertising. :) I can't do that work again, so I welcome others have a crack at it.

At least the last time I looked at it, the layout of the Main Page is fixed by Wikia: a wide main window on the left (leftcolumn), a narrow sidebar on the right (rightcolumn), and a full-width gutter at the bottom (endcolumn). They "strongly recommend" not altering it in the original Main Page code. Every wiki uses that, and problems may result if you try to dump one. Removing the right sidebar would just leave that spot blank, because its width is defined by the all-important second advert, which won't go anyway. We use it or lose it, really.

My approach last time was to put the crunchy stuff and indexes on the rightcolumn sidebar and endcolumn gutter, because they seemed secondary, while our featured articles and lore were given attention front-and-centre-ish in the main leftcolumn. I still like that approach.

I also tried to condense text to save space, so "covering all editions and media" is shorter than "covering all sourcebooks, novels, games and other media of all editions" and won't risk taking up two lines.

Some ideas I've had for the Main Page under Oasis:

  • The big block carrying the logo and drop-down menus. It's the first thing (sometimes only thing) you see on first sight. Let's put an eye-catching picture there as some wikis are doing. I thought of the Celtic-style designs from the tops of 2nd-edition sourcebooks, but it has to be appropriately designed, and not so busy it would obscure the menus. Can we change the repeated name "Forgotten Realms Wiki" to something informative?
  • Page title: This adds a lot of white-space. Utterly pointless, utterly painful to get rid of. I tried and failed. Maybe someone with more code skill than me could manage it? Either to the remove the title or raise the leftcolumn over it.
  • Last time, I tried to link and explain a lot of stuff about the FRW on the Main Page, because it was still struggling to get respect and people didn't get the point and scope of it. I also posted a lot of help stuff to get interest. Maybe that could be reduced a bit now. The drop-down menus repeat a lot of what appears in the rightcolumn and endcolumn.
The portals themselves I don't use and don't know what to do with, so I leave them to other people.
— BadCatMan (talk) 00:50, November 7, 2018 (UTC)

When you see the front page on a smaller screen, like a tablet or just re-sizing the browser, the sidebar drops below the main block, split in two. Looks kinda bad. The Welcome bit in the sidebar is below the main box, so you only see it after scrolling down a bunch. We could move the welcome bit to the main box so its seen right away on any screen, and keep portals and the other stuff in the sidebar?

For the page title, can you assign a unique css class to it? It can be removed by adding

display: none;


.WikiaPage .page-header__title

but that will remove ALL page titles, so that wont work.

A bit off-topic, but for portals, I proposed a while back creating new ones, like for Magazine and Comics and Video Games.
Regis87 (talk) 02:31, November 7, 2018 (UTC)

The problem is that the box that holds the header also holds the big Edit button and the Share button. I could make it disappear, but those buttons would go away too, and even if I could make it only affect the Main Page, I'm pretty sure that violates the ToU (Terms of Use) for FANDOM.
Moviesign (talk) 03:20, November 7, 2018 (UTC)

Movie, I like the new look of the cover page :)
- Darkwynters (talk) 23:36, November 15, 2018 (UTC)
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