New Wesnoth blurb

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Simons Mith
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New Wesnoth blurb

Post by Simons Mith »

This HTML fragment is my proposed replacement for the Overview currently on the Wesnoth main page.
It's better English, and it's does a better sales job for the (please forgive the marketing-speak) 'Wesnoth product'.


<div id="right">
<div class="container">
<h2>Overview</h2>
<p><strong>The Battle for Wesnoth</strong> is a turn-based strategy game with a fantasy theme.</p>
<p><em>Build up a great army</em>, selecting raw recruits and leading them through fight after fight until they become hardened veterans. In later games, recall your toughest warriors and gather a force before whom even the greatest opponents will tremble! Your warriors can be recruited from a large pool of specialist units, offering you many options to select a force with the right strengths to perform well on a wide variety of terrains and defeat all manner of different opponents.</p>
<div class="sshots">
<a href="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.4-halo.jpg"><img alt="Wesnoth Screenshot" src="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.4-halo-175.jpg" /></a>
<a href="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.9-burningsuns.png"><img alt="Wesnoth Screenshot" src="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.9-burningsuns-175.jpg" /></a>
</div>
<p>Fight to regain the throne of Wesnoth, of which you are the legitimate heir, or use your dread power over the Undead to dominate the land of mortals, or lead your glorious Orcish tribe to victory against the puny human armies who dared to steal your land . . . Wesnoth has many different sagas waiting to be played out. It is even possible to create your own custom units, and write your own scenarios - or even full-blown campaigns. Finally, you can challenge your friends - or strangers - and strive against them for victory in <em>multi-player</em> epic fantasy battles.</p>
<h2>Features</h2>
<ul>
<li>Starting with a single leader and a purse of gold coins, recruit units as you choose and create a formidable fighting force.</li>
<li>Lead your army to victory on scores of different custom-designed maps, or an infinite multitude of random maps.</li>
<li>Choose among more than half a dozen different races or factions, each with its own distinctive abilities, weapons and spells.</li>
<li>GNU/Linux, Windows, MacOSX, BeOS, Solaris, FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD compatible. Source code available for compilation on other platforms as well.</li>
<li>Sophisticated mark-up language allows advanced users to create their own maps, units, factions, scenarios or campaigns.</li>
<li>A 'fog of war' feature is available for a true test of generalship, or the map can be made fully visible to all players.</li>
<li>Several multi-player options are present, including network play. The official server has hundreds of skilled on-line opponents.</li>
</ul>
</div>
</div>
</div>
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Post by Dave »

I concur that this is alot better than our current description. Good work Simon :)

Could someone please upload it? (I will if I have time before anyone else does).

I don't think we decided upon a 'policy' for copyright of website content, but if Simons Mith is willing to disclaim copyright, and/or assign copyright to the Wesnoth development team, then I think that'll be fine...

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Post by Simons Mith »

Yes, that's fine. I'm happy to assign copyright to the Wesnoth Collective.

My intention was to make this blurb available whererever the current blurb is used, so that's going to be more than just the web page.


Oh, another marketing bullet point:

<li>Wesnoth's language support covers 20 languages to date, including French, German, Spanish, and even Latin.</li>



If I was to write a draft submissions policy for you, what should it cover? Just the website, or all things Wesnoth-related? If the latter, it could cover campaign submissions, how contributions are credited, owenership of material on the Web site, the Wiki, the Fora, the various servers and so on. Is there any material already in existence pertaining to this this? If so, please give me pointers. I very much doubt the GPL stretches to cover /all/ extant Wesnoth-material.
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Post by turin »

Well, when uploading content to the campaign server all the data must be GPLed. It makes you agree to it before you can upload. And all official content is GPLed.

There are also policies in effect for forum contributions, see this thread: http://www.wesnoth.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=2014 and the similar one in Music Development.
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ettin
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Post by ettin »

Dave wrote:Could someone please upload it? (I will if I have time before anyone else does).
I have temporary uploaded it here.
Dave wrote:I concur that this is alot better than our current description. Good work Simon :)
Yes, this description is better.
But... it has a lot of text for a simple introduction IMHO. That means that some people might find it overwhelming to read. On the other hand, it does not look as good as the previous descrition with our current homepage (which was not thought to have a large description).

We could only show the most important features on the homepage and add a link to a detailed description.
Any thoughts?
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Simons Mith
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Post by Simons Mith »

[ettin] You're right, it does look a bit crowded when it's in situ.

It would be easy to chop my first draft by about a third so I'll do that and post a pruned version in the next day or two.
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Post by Simons Mith »

Replacement blurb v 2:


<div id="right">
<div class="container">
<h2>Overview</h2>
<p><strong>The Battle for Wesnoth</strong> is a turn-based strategy game with a fantasy theme.</p>
<p><em>Build up a great army</em>, gradually turning raw recruits into hardened veterans. In later games, recall your toughest warriors and form a deadly host against whom none can stand! Choose units from a large pool of specialists, and hand-pick a force with the right strengths to fight well on different terrains against all manner of opponents.</p>
<div class="sshots">
<a href="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.4-halo.jpg"><img alt="Wesnoth Screenshot" src="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.4-halo-175.jpg" /></a>
<a href="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.9-burningsuns.png"><img alt="Wesnoth Screenshot" src="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.9-burningsuns-175.jpg" /></a>
</div>
<p>Fight to regain the throne of Wesnoth, of which you are the legitimate heir, or use your dread power over the Undead to dominate the land of mortals, or lead your glorious Orcish tribe to victory against the puny human armies who dared to steal your land . . . Wesnoth has many different sagas waiting to be played out. You can create your own custom units, scenarios, or even full-blown campaigns. You can also challenge your friends - or strangers - and fight <em>multi-player</em> epic fantasy battles.</p>
<h2>Features</h2>
<ul>
<li>Build up a powerful army, starting from a single leader and a small amount of gold.</li>
<li>Scores of different custom-designed maps, and unlimited random maps.</li>
<li>Many different races, each with its own distinctive abilities, weapons and spells.</li>
<li>GNU/Linux, Windows, MacOSX, BeOS, Solaris, FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD compatible.</li>
<li>Sophisticated mark-up language lets advanced users make their own maps, factions or campaigns.</li>
<li>'Fog of war' feature available for a true test of generalship.</li>
<li>Several multi-player options available, including internet play.</li>
<li>Excellent language support - 20 different languages currently available.</li>
</ul>
</div>
</div>
</div>

Rough word counts:

"Build" para+"Fight" para+Features
Original: 37+97+22=156
First draft: 78+97+130=305
Second draft: 55+86+80=220

So this second try is about half again as long as the original, and about 1/3 shorter than v1. It could be squeezed a bit further, but I'm quite happy with it now. When/if you need a shorter version, I suggest you drop either of the two main paragraphs and/or some or all of the feature list.

One minor point - do you think the feature list is in a good order? Numbering them 1-8, perhaps 1 3 2 6 7 5 8 4 is more logical.

[Edit: I don't half make some odd errors when I'm tired. What normal person would confuse 'due' and 'do'? Oh, yes. Bed. What a good idea.]

BTW: Ellipsis: space dot space dot space dot space is correct for an ellipsis. ... is wrong although regrettably common. Alternatively use the correct custom symbol, &hellip; and let the client's browser sort it out. :-) Google for 'Correct use of ellipsis' and 'Correct use of hyphens' and in both cases the first page of hits is most educational. Peter Sheerin's article is particularly good.
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Post by Jetrel »

Simons Mith wrote: or lead your glorious Orcish tribe to victory against the humans who dared despoil your lands . . . Wesnoth has many different sagas waiting to be played out. You can create your own custom units, scenarios, or even full-blown campaigns. You can also challenge your friends -
only suggestion
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Post by scott »

Simons Mith wrote: <h2>Features</h2>
<ul>
<li>Build up a powerful army, starting from a single leader and a small amount of gold.</li>
<li>Scores of different custom-designed maps, and unlimited random maps.</li>
<li>Many different races, each with its own distinctive abilities, weapons and spells.</li>
<li>GNU/Linux, Windows, MacOSX, BeOS, Solaris, FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD compatible.</li>
<li>Sophisticated mark-up language lets advanced users make their own maps, factions or campaigns.</li>
<li>'Fog of war' feature available for a true test of generalship.</li>
<li>Several multi-player options available, including internet play.</li>
<li>Excellent language support - 20 different languages currently available.</li>
</ul>
I suggest 1-3-7-2-6-5-8-4
You can say more than "14 races" instead of "many".
You could add as line 2 the fact that you can recall your most experienced fighters, who can level up into more powerful class types.
You could also mention there are hundreds of single-player campaign scenarios
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Post by Simons Mith »

[Jetryl] Agreed.

Updated feature list:

<li>Build up a formidable fighting force, starting from a single leader and a small amount of gold.</li>
<li>Experienced units gain powerful new abilities as they advance.</li>
<li>14 different races, all with their own distinctive abilities, weapons and spells.</li>
<li>Several multi-player options available, including internet play.</li>
<li>Scores of different custom-designed maps, and unlimited random maps.</li>
<li>Hundreds of single-player campaign scenarios available for download.</li>
<li>'Fog of war' feature available for a true test of generalship.</li>
<li>Sophisticated mark-up language lets advanced users make their own maps, factions or campaigns.</li>
<li>Excellent language support - 20 different languages currently available.</li>
<li>GNU/Linux, Windows, MacOSX, BeOS, Solaris, FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD compatible.</li>



I was vague before on the number of races because there are races, and there are factions, and there's an overlap between them. To say '14 races' is slightly misleading, (humans, trolls, dwarves, elves, orcs, goblins, mermen, nagas, drakes - have I missed anyone? - is only nine) - but saying '14 factions' is not as meaningful unles you already know the game. And Undead don't really fit as a race. '<li>Ten races and 14 distinct factions, all with their own ...</li>' is a bit overlong.


Also, the new item 6 - 'hundreds of single-player campaign scenarios' is accurate but a bit unwieldy. 'Hundreds of scenarios' omits the fact that many of those scenarions are part of bundled downloadable campaigns, and 'dozens of campaigns' overlooks all the standalone scenarios.


Anyone have any better suggestions for these two?


Finally, as per ettin's observation about the page looking crowded, ten bullet points really is about the most we can get away with. Perhaps we should ration ourselves to 5-7 out of these ten.
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Post by scott »

"Hundreds of campaign scenarios" is synonymous because there are no multiplayer campaigns. There are a few single-scenario cooperative multiplayer maps, but it's honestly probably less than 5. It's a little bit more concise.

Ogre, saurian, wose, monster, and undead brings it to 14. You may not want to count some. Monster could contain multiple races (spiders, dragons, cockatrice, yeti, etc.) or none. There are 218 units, down to ~214 when you take out the ships, gate, and watch tower. "Over 200 unit types, each with distinct abilities, weapons, and spells." Or, "Over 200 unit types and 12 races, each with..." Just some ideas.
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Post by dms »

I think it makes more sense to highlight the number of factions rather than races.

Also, I think the ability to download campaigns from within the game is quite significant. You don't have to figure out where to put it, how/whether to unzip it etc... How unique is this feature? It seems like it's worth a mention.
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Post by Dave »

Yeah, I think the number of units and factions is more important than races. Strictly a unit's "race" is never directly exposed to the player.

David
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Post by Simons Mith »

Final version, hopefully.

I have used HTML glyphs for the ellipsis and dashes. Addressing dms' point about ease of downloading new campaigns was a bit of a puzzle.

[Edit, niggle deleted]

I think this is now done!


<div id="right">
<div class="container">
<h2>Overview</h2>
<p><strong>The Battle for Wesnoth</strong> is a turn-based strategy game with a fantasy theme.</p>
<p><em>Build up a great army</em>, gradually turning raw recruits into hardened veterans. In later games, recall your toughest warriors and form a deadly host against whom none can stand! Choose units from a large pool of specialists, and hand-pick a force with the right strengths to fight well on different terrains against all manner of opposition.</p>
<div class="sshots">
<a href="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.4-halo.jpg"><img alt="Wesnoth Screenshot" src="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.4-halo-175.jpg" /></a>
<a href="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.9-burningsuns.png"><img alt="Wesnoth Screenshot" src="images/sshots/wesnoth-0.8.9-burningsuns-175.jpg" /></a>
</div>
<p>Fight to regain the throne of Wesnoth, of which you are the legitimate heir, or use your dread power over the Undead to dominate the land of mortals, or lead your glorious Orcish tribe to victory against the humans who dared despoil your lands &hellip; Wesnoth has many different sagas waiting to be played out. You can create your own custom units, and write your own scenarios &endash; or even full-blown campaigns. You can also challenge your friends &endash; or strangers &endash; and fight <em>multi-player</em> epic fantasy battles.</p>
<h2>Features</h2>
<ul>
<li>Build up a formidable fighting force, starting from a single leader and a small amount of gold.</li>
<li>Over 200 unit types in six major factions, all with distinctive abilities, weapons and spells.</li>
<li>Experienced units gain powerful new abilities as they advance.</li>
<li>Several multi-player options available, including internet play.</li>
<li>Scores of different custom-designed maps, and unlimited random maps.</li>
<li>Hundreds of campaign scenarios available for download via a simple in-game procedure.</li>
<li>'Fog of war' feature available for a true test of generalship.</li>
<li>Sophisticated mark-up language lets advanced users make their own maps, factions or campaigns.</li>
<li>Excellent language support &endash; 20 different languages currently available.</li>
<li>GNU/Linux, Windows, MacOSX, BeOS, Solaris, FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD compatible.</li>
</ul>
</div>
</div>
</div>
ott
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Post by ott »

Simons Mith wrote:Final version, hopefully.
Nice work. Perhaps you could also check the brief description at the Wiki homepage, which I last revised a few weeks ago.
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