I think you need something that will the attention of valuable members of the community. While generic SSF4 costume posts will always be news, there are a ton of players who are capable of producing content x10 more interesting than that. SRK REALLY NEEDS (imo) to create a clear and distinct line between itself and places like eventshubs. While the forums are the obvious answer, the front page needs to be the one and only source where people will find great material that won’t pop up anywhere else.
I believe there is an element that can be introduced in order to get people to post up creative stuff on the front page. For instance, system nuances or even arcade sticks which are made by people in the community. “What’s on your mind” has a lot of potential, if people who run events (Final Round as of now) get on there and talk about something, it would serve as a good gateway into tournaments as well as community ‘bonding’. Which is what makes SRK’s community special, well, it did anyway. People traveling across the country to play people whom they didnt get along with (rivalries) just for the sake of honor and pride. All that stuff is somewhat recognizable still, however, it should be highlighted as much as possible SINCE SRK is the main place where all that stuff was born. A competitive fighting game community is a very special term that SRK had a great part in developing and making pieces of it, unique to SRK. The events and rivalries have all helped the community build up, giving those things exposure and whatnot is vital, imo.
The SRK Podcast can be used to for a variety of reasons, perhaps something outside of the show? Like call-ins or listeners who contribute win something? I like Maj’s Combo Challenge stuff cause it makes people think of something outside the box. Hopefully more combo video people start showing up to the community as an result of his combo challenges.
Maybe sticky some of the ‘best’ news on the front page somewhere? Like a tab on the side that lists Articles & Anything else that is of value. At the moment the front page has an upcoming events/tournaments side bar, somewhere on the front page a tab with the valuable content that people have produced can be put up so they’re easily accessible. Someone wanted to listen to the podcast that I was in and they had to go down to page 4 to find it. If the SRK podcast had its own tab or something, people can have direct gateways to all the cool stuff. EVEN if those tabs direct them to the forums, it would still be helpful.
I’d like to see articles about cultivating a community and the difference philosophies people have in order to achieve it. Some people prefer to be very exclusive and others prefer to be very inclusive (+mixture of both etc). Sometimes weighing in the history of different people’s attempts at fostering growth can be useful in order to get people to understand the intricacies of building something from scratch. Since SRK is the best place for competitive fighting game stuff, the people who’ve tried to build and organize competitive scenes can weigh in on what worked and what didn’t. I’d also like to read people who’ve been in the community since its beginnings talk about the history of what happened. There was a top SF player by the name of Jeff Shafer (SP?) who had a giant series of videos on youtube of him talking to the camera about the history of the SoCal SF scene. It was really cool to see that kind of stuff, hopefully those kinds of videos start popping up more as it’s very important, in my opinion, that all these new SF4 kids get a history and perspective of what’s been going on before SF4. Most of these new kids had no idea that there was even a fighting game community prior to SF4, so knowledgeable people talking about the history and ‘ways the community works’ would be very cool.