FanSite Reviews on TF.N

Discussion in 'Fan Sites' started by JediStryker, Jul 31, 2003.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Upcoming fansite reviews this week:

    Site: Darth Zan's Star Wars Site

    URL: http://darthzan.cjb.net

    and

    Site: Obidala Sanctuary

    URL: http://www20.brinkster.com/obidala/
  2. AERYN_SUN Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 1, 2001
    star 5
    Yay, OS is gonna be reviewed :D I'm so excited! I'll be checking here for the comments.

    ~aeryn
  3. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
  4. DarthMak Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 4, 2001
    star 5
    Thanks for reviewing my site JediStryker. I definitely appreciate it. :)
  5. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Not a problem, Mak. :)

    Here are this weeks reviews. Enjoy!

    -JS

    ========================================================
    4. Fan Site Reviews
    Edited by Peter Michaelson
    ======================================================

    Site: Darth Zan's Star Wars Site

    URL: http://darthzan.cjb.net

    First Impression:

    Clean and organized; the main page is simple and easy to navigate.
    The menu is nice and easy to read. I would usually complain about
    the starfield background, but this one is subtle and actually
    makes the text stand out, so I like it.

    Content:

    Darth Zan's content is pretty standard for your typical fan site.
    Movie/book/game reviews, message board, and links to other Star
    Wars sites. One section that I thought was pretty neat was for
    Star Wars midis from the movies. I haven't seen midis in a while
    with the rise in popularity of MP3s, but it was fun to listen to
    some of the old Star Wars songs digitized.

    The reviews were a bit weak, in my opinion, being mostly synopses
    with opinions thrown in here and there. There were a lot of spelling
    and grammatical errors, which will often cast doubt on the validity
    of web-reviewers.

    Maintenance/Updates:

    The site itself looks like it is updated fairly regularly, though
    the content doesn't appear to be updated all that often. Most of
    the work goes into the message board and poll.

    Who Would Like It:

    Anyone who enjoys fan sites, and seeing other people's take on
    Star Wars.

    Final Thoughts:

    I think that this site is neat; it's a great effort by a casual
    Star Wars fan. There's a lot of stuff, however, that could be
    improved upon, and I think that those things will have to be
    fixed before this can become a truly memorable fan page.

    ------

    Site: Obidala Sanctuary

    URL: http://www20.brinkster.com/obidala/

    First Impression:

    Very clean and nice-looking (I particularly like main menu design),
    though the colors are a little bland. The tagboard on the left side
    is a bit large and distracting.

    Content:

    Wow, there's a lot of stuff on this site. I think most impressive
    is the fan fiction section, which has a plethora of stories dedicated
    to the fantasy coupling of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Padme Amidala. I just
    couldn't go through all of them, but the ones I did read through were
    good indeed. Very interesting reading.

    Also impressive was the fan art gallery, which was quite large. I was
    impressed by most of the images, though there were some that I thought
    could have been left out. I also thought that a message advising
    surfers to click on the thumbnails to get the full version of the
    picture would be helpful.

    The site has many other features, including a message board and Ewan
    McGregor fan page. I found the site to be a bit disorganized, with
    links in some places that seemed like they were tacked on as an
    afterthought. Also, most of the links are not distinguishable in any
    way to regular text, which can make browsing the site difficult. A
    different color for links, in my opinion, goes a long way towards
    making a site more navigable.

    Maintenance/Updates:

    The site appears to be updated pretty frequently, with several
    having been made in just this month alone. It's hard to tell
    how often actual content (pictures, stories, etc.,) is being
    added, but the site itself is constantly being improved upon.
    The message board seems a bit quiet, and I didn't see many posts
    from people outside the site's webmaster. It seemed to be dedicated
    mostly to site news.

    This site is definitely a tribute to it's owner; she does a lot of
    hard work on it.

    Who Would Like It:

    Almost the entire site is dedicated to the fantasy relationship
    between Obi-Wan and Padme, so if you're interested in these two
    characters and their relationship with eachother, this is ought
    to be a dream come true. The Ewan tribute page also has some
    interesting tidbits for the Ewan McGregor fans out there.

    Final Thoughts:

    This is a good-looking site
  6. AERYN_SUN Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 1, 2001
    star 5
    I just checked my e-mail and read your view, JediStryker. It made me wander when did you make the review? 'Cause OS has a new yellow/brown layout.

    ~aeryn
  7. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    I did it on Wednesday, 10 September.

    Don't get me wrong, I think your site is great. I just found the color scheme to be a little bland. That's not necessarily a bad thing, just how it came across to me.

    Remember, reviews by one person are subjective; so others may have a completely different read on something.
  8. AERYN_SUN Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 1, 2001
    star 5
    I just maybe you had reviewed when it had a light blue layout but thanks for reviewing my site!

    ~aeryn
  9. malducin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 4
    I do remember an older layout for the Obdidala Sanctuary. I think the new design is more streamlined and elegant and easier to navigate. I prefer darker looking wesbite but I thnik the new colors make it easier to read than before. The comments section in the left seems a bit off though mainly because it cuts off the picture (even though you can see it below) but that's just me.

    Of course the most important thing is that you update the main page so you can see the site is still alive and the forums to have more participation.
  10. Darth-Zan Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2003
    Thanks Stryker for reviewing my site. The site has gotten A LOT of hits today because of the review so thanks.
  11. Ozzel TF.N Foreign Book Covers Staff

    VIP
    Member Since:
    May 14, 2001
    star 5
    Oh wow, I got reviewed! :eek:
  12. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    I sent an email to you to let you know. ;)

    Glad everyone is enjoying (and reaping the benefits of) the reviews. Keep sending me submissions!
  13. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    This Weeks Coming Reviews:

    Name: The Council of the Jedi

    URL: http://councilofjedi.swsites.net

    and

    Name: The Luke/Vader Writers

    URL: http://members.tripod.com/luke_vader_writers/index.html

    Make sure to sign up for the TF.N Newsletter to get the reviews in all their glory!
  14. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Here are this week's reviews. Enjoy!

    JS

    ========================================================
    4. Fan Site Reviews
    Edited by Peter Michaelson
    ======================================================

    Name: The Council of the Jedi

    URL: http://councilofjedi.swsites.net

    My Description: A Star Wars news site with cool comics.

    First Impression:

    The welcome page into the site is really cool. The original artwork
    is really impressive, and I was excited to check out the site the
    second I saw it. Just great.

    Content:

    Once you get into the site, you are welcomed by a news page and a
    small menu. Not too shabby, though a bit plain. The news is fresh
    and up-to-date; I actually learned some things reading the news
    posted here, and considering how many Star Wars sites I view a day,
    that was impressive. Nothing Earth-shattering, but cool nonetheless.

    This part of the site is fluff, though, compared the comics section.
    The artwork, a sort of cartoony-Star Wars strip, is fun and nice-
    looking. I have to admit; after viewing the artwork on the Welcome
    page, I was hoping that there was a real on-going story to the
    characters, but all the comics consisted of either little comedy
    bits or parodies of movies/TV shows. They are great, don't get me
    wrong; but I want to see these characters in action!

    The message board is very active, with over 200 members and several
    thousand posts. Topics range from Star Wars to Lord of the Rings to
    Star Trek.

    Maintenance/Updates:

    The site appears to be updated almost daily, and a note promises
    updates at least every Monday and Friday. There were no problems
    navigating it or bad links to complain about.

    Who Would Like It:

    Any comics fan into parodies/comedy, or those who enjoy a general
    fan site.

    Final Thought: I don't know what it was about the artwork that
    appealed to me so much, but I honestly got excited when I saw that
    first picture on the Welcome screen. (I wonder if I could get the
    artist to draw a picture for me?! ;) I really was hoping that there
    was some kind of weekly serial with the characters from that picture
    waiting for me, but what the site contained was still very cool
    indeed. There's something to be said for someone who takes the time
    to make something original and share it with the world, and these
    guys have it going on. They were advertising that they were looking
    for a new artist, so maybe we'll something like that come to fruition
    soon.

    --------

    Name: The Luke/Vader Writers

    URL: http://members.tripod.com/luke_vader_writers/index.html

    My Description: The title pretty much says it all.

    First Impression:

    Very cool-looking, though getting to the actual content is a
    little bit of a chore. It would be nice if the menu and news
    section was near the top of the main site, instead of having
    to scroll down to get to it. I like the picture at the top of
    the main site page, though.

    Content: Before I started doing these reviews, I had no idea
    how much Star Wars fan fiction there was out there. The focus
    of Luke/Vader Writers is fan fiction starring (wait for it...)
    Luke and Vader. There are a lot of great stories here, though
    getting to them is a little difficult. I think that instead of
    giving every author their own little sub-page, it might be better
    to actually link the stories beneath their names. The way it's
    organized now, getting down to the actual stories is a bit of a
    process.

    The Challenges section was pretty interesting; members submit a
    challenge to write a fan fic within set guidelines, e.g. write a
    story about Luke and Vader using one-hundred words or less.

    The site also has a message board, though it is relatively quiet.

    Maintenance/Updates: The site looks like it is updated fairly
    frequently, with fan fic stories added as they are completed.
    It's good to see that new content is being added, as the writers
    who contribute to this site are actually very entertaining. The
    site is well maintained,
  15. AzraelHorn Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2003
    star 1
    Thanks for the great review. I really appreciate it. I'll let Adam know that you liked his artwork. Maybe when he gets his computer fixed he can hook you up. ;)
  16. Darth-Zan Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2003
    Stryker the reviews you just posted were the ones that were just in the newsletter. Was mine in the newsletter the week before?
  17. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Yes, D-Z, scroll up a bit to see the post with your review.

    Thanks for the great review. I really appreciate it. I'll let Adam know that you liked his artwork. Maybe when he gets his computer fixed he can hook you up.

    Happy to do it. If you couldn't tell, I really liked it. ;)
  18. AzraelHorn Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2003
    star 1
    ;) I'm glad to hear it. If you liked that, you'll love the changes we are currently making and you'll be happy to know we are working on a "serious" comic where you will get to see all the action you ever wanted. It's called Republic Knights and it will be based around Kieran Halcyon (The guy Corran is related to and named himself after in I, Jedi) when he was a Padawan and his Master. The first 6 scripts are written and the colorist is currently working on coloring the character sketches.
  19. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Hey everyone!

    Here are sites featured in this week's upcoming reviews:

    Rogue Eleven

    &

    Skywalking

    Enjoy! And remember, if you want your fansite reviewed, just send me an email or PM!

    JS
  20. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Here are this weeks reviews. Posting them a day late tonight; Star Wars Galaxies has me addicted!!!

    JS

    ========================================================
    4. Fan Site Reviews
    Edited by Peter Michaelson
    ======================================================

    Name: Rogue Eleven

    URL: http://www34.brinkster.com/rougeeleven/RougeElevenHome.html

    My Description: A simple yet imaginative Jaina Solo fan site.

    First Impression:

    Nice welcome page. Simple and clean, with a nicely-chosen
    image to give you the feel for what this site is about. I
    also think that the site's title is strikingly simple-yet-clever.

    The site itself is very well-organized; making it both easy to
    navigate and clean-looking. My only gripe is that it's a bit
    on the plain side. The webmaster, however, is promising a new
    layout with what appeared to be a new color scheme.

    Content:

    The bulk of the site is devoted to Jaina Solo fan fiction. There
    were a few stories focusing on the Jaina/Jag relationship, but
    other fan fic sections (Jaina/Kyp, Alternate Universe, NJO, and
    Young Jedi Knights) were empty. The stories that were listed were
    well-written, and two of them were quite long. While relationship-fics
    are not usually my cup of tea, these were interesting and fun to read.

    The other section, Fan Art, was a broken link.

    Maintenance/Updates:

    Aside from the broken link mentioned above, the site was looked
    well-maintained.

    In fairness, the webmaster noted in her News section that the site
    had recently suffered a server dump, so the broken link might have
    had to do with that.

    The site is being updated, and surfers should look forward to some
    promised changes in the near future.

    Who Would Like It:

    Jaina Solo fans!

    Final Thought:

    This is a potentially great Jaina Solo fan site. With more images,
    info, and fan fic, I would definitely consider this to be the place
    to go for Jaina info and fun.

    -------

    Name: Skywalking

    URL: http://catofthejedi.users.btopenworld.com/

    My Description: The Skywalker Family's fan page

    First Impression:

    Nice. Simple and easy to read. As I'm sure you've come to know, I'm
    not a fan of starfield backgrounds (but they're so danged popular!),
    but this one is nice and subtle. Nice menu at the top of each page;
    navigation will never be an issue here.

    Content:

    First of all, I must say that the little introduction on the site's
    main page was both empassioned and eloquent. It's always nice to see
    a fan sharing their affections to other fans. It gives the site a soul.

    The Images section was pretty full. Since the site focuses on the
    Skywalkers, all the images are of Luke, Anakin, and their relations.
    Plenty to find here, and even some images of smuggler extraordinaire
    Han Solo, who is a member of the family by proxy.

    Most impressive, though, is the site's fanfiction section, which is
    large and full of great fan fics. The webmaster's stories are well-
    written and just fun to read. I especially appreciated the stories
    set early in Luke's life; it was interesting to see a fan's glimpse
    into the hero's childhood. These are the types of stories that make
    fanfic fun to read.

    A small fan art gallery is also an interesting addition to the site.

    Maintenance/Updates:

    As the site's focus seems to mainly be on fanfic, it looks to be
    updated as new stories are completed. There were no bad links or
    any problems that would need to be noted. The good design and color
    choices make it easy to navigate and read.

    Who Would Like It:

    Fans of the Skywalkers from the movies

    Final Thought:

    This is a simple site that has a lot of heart. I like the fan
    fiction, and after reading the opening page, would be interested
    in reading more essay-like works on the movies and the relationships
    between the Skywalker family members written by the webmaster.
    Definitely a site to keep an eye on.

    ---

    As a PS, Raven, Rogue Eleven's webmaster, has sent me an email letting me know that the revamped site's URL is updating. Go to http://www.gex
  21. DarkWoman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 31, 2002
    star 4
    Are you accepting sites in foreign language? I'm considering submiting one for review but it's in portuguese.
  22. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Well...it would be hard to review the site in all the categories if I couldn't read any of it...but go ahead and submit it and I'll take a look. I can let you know if I can review it or not. :)
  23. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Only one review this week due to technical errors. Enjoy!

    ----

    Name: Visions of the Future/Specters of the Past

    URL: http://www.visionsofthefuture.tk

    My Description: The soap-opera digest of the Star Wars galaxy.

    First Impression: Great pic collection; though red text over black
    background can become eye-watering. Not a big fan of stuff following
    my mouse pointer around while I'm surfing a site.

    Content: A lot of great stuff here. I found the fan-fiction section
    to be the most impressive part of the site, with a lot of great (and
    in-depth!) stories. The biographies section has some decent biographies,
    but a few degenerate into opinions on the characters or point-by-point
    book descriptions. The site also boasts a small message-board, though
    it's more of a guestbook, really.

    Maintenance/Updates: The site has no broken links or missing images.
    It didn't look like it had been updated in a few months, though.

    Who Would Like It: Any Star Wars EU fan interested in relationship
    fan-fics.

    Final Thought: This site has a lot of potential. With a few layout
    tweaks and bit more updating, I think it could become a popular
    place to visit and discuss the relationships between the various
    Star Wars couples (and potential couples!).
  24. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
  25. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    Late posting of the reviews this week due to the newsletter being late.

    JS

    ---

    Name: Random Star Wars

    URL: http://www.geocities.com/sithkittie/

    My Description: Can't say it any better than the name itself.

    First Impression: Nice welcome page; simple but effective. The site
    itself is well-organized and easy to read. The images tossed into each
    page is a nice touch and helps break up the monotony that often comes
    from straight text.

    Content: As the site's name implies, there is a lot of random Star
    Wars-related stuff to be found at RSW. From an image gallery to a
    costume-design page to a forum, this site has no direct focus, but
    instead has little tid-bits of just about everything to make it
    interesting.

    The only downside to this approach is that with no focus, no one
    page is particularly outstanding. There's not a lot on the site
    that I would tell people they had to see. In my opinion, the biggest
    draws to the site would be the Jedi Costume page (very thorough!)
    and the Fan Fiction section, which I always encourage surfers to
    sample.

    The webmaster's humor is injected into every paragraph on the site,
    which is refreshing and makes it fun to read.

    Maintenance/Updates: Site appears to be updated pretty much at the
    webmaster's whim. No particular problems, though one annoyance: the
    menu on the left is missing some links depending on what page you're
    currently visiting.

    Who Would Like It: Fans of costume-making and Fan Fic.

    Final Thought: Not a bad site at all. I enjoyed sifting through the
    various content, and even thought about embarking on making my own
    Jedi outfit (wouldn't my wife be proud?). With a little more focus
    and a little less 'random', I think that this site would be very
    popular indeed.

    ~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~

    Name: Lord Makro's STAR WARS Modeling Page

    URL: http://users.hol.gr/~makzax/models/

    My Description: Cool! Star Wars models!

    First Impression: Awesome. Ya' know, when I think of the type of
    things that I like to see in a fan site, movie images and reviews
    and stuff are cool, but you know that just about everybody else
    has 'em too. But this site is unique because it has something
    that only the webmaster could provide: things that he built. Sure,
    anyone else could buy the same models and put them together, but
    there's heart in taking pride in something that you put together
    with your own two hands. It's the same reason, I think, that fan
    fic is so popular.

    Content: Just a few models on display, but the ones that were were
    done so in a very artful way. The pictures were very bright and
    vibrant. The technical info along with the personal experiences of
    the webmaster in building them were a nice touch, and the pics of
    the boxes the models came in were a welcome and nifty addition to
    each page.

    The webmaster hails from Greece, and so a Greek version of the site
    is also available from the main welcome page. Very cool!

    Maintenance/Updates: Updates appear to occur as the webmaster
    finishes his models. There were no broken links and the site was
    extremely easy to navigate and read.

    Who Would Like It: Any modeling fans and surfers who enjoy a good,
    unique fan site.

    Final Thought: There's just something so refreshing about pages
    that you know people are proud of. The fact that the webmaster
    was proud enough of his models that he wanted to display them
    for all to see is cool, and I applaud him for it. Can't wait to
    see some new models!
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.