A Fresh Start For The Hunter’s Lair

Discussion in 'Site Support & News' started by Art Andrews, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    We are drawing very close to moving the Lair to its new home and I am very excited to share some of the what/why with you regarding this move.

    What are we doing?

    We are migrating the Hunter’s Lair to a completely new software platform which will include a new look and a new name for the community?

    A new name?!?

    Yes! When you migrate to a new software platform, you inevitably lose all your previous links, which makes it a better time than most to make a name change so we felt this would be the appropriate time. Why change the name? We want a community that is IMMEDIATELY known by its name. While WE all know what “The Hunter’s Lair” refers to, outsiders don’t instantly know what we are all about. The obvious answer is to have the word “Predator” in our name and that is exactly where we started. While we wanted Predator in the name, we also felt it was important that we pay homage to the community’s original name as this has always been and always will be “A place for Predator.” Coupling those to desires together, we very naturally came to “Predatorium” (with the help of some input from Facebook). The suffix “torium” is a bit of a cheat (using part of the noun) but meaning “a place for” or “the place of.” So, the literal translation of the new name means “The place of Predator” which we feel is a strong nod to “The Hunter’s Lair.” We are really excited about this name because you immediately know what it is about and it still gives a nod to the community’s origins!

    Note: If you go to predatorium.com right now you aren't going to see much. We are doing a number of imports, so you are just likely to see the stock install of the new software and not much else...

    So, what about this new software?

    Within our family of communities, the Hunter’s Lair has always been the odd man out. Why? Because it uses a different forum software than all of our other communities. In looking at giving the community a fresh start we initially planned to export the Lair to the same software as all of our other communities (makes sense, right?). However, after a lot of research, we came to four conclusions; 1) The software all of our other communities operate under is very dated and is not mobile friendly or modern in any sense of the word. 2) The software company that creates the software all our other communities operate under isn’t doing anything about this. 3) If we exported the Hunter’s Lair to this software, we would lose a LOT of data. 4) The Hunter’s Lair deserves something better.

    With that in mind we went searching for another answer and we found it. Instead of trailing behind all of our other communities, Predatorium will be leading the pack as it will be exported to a much newer, much more modern forum system that blows away the software all of our other communities operate under. But what does that mean for you? It means that we will finally have a site that works well on both mobile and desktop devices without having to use a third party program! It means we will be able to implement changes more quickly and more easily. It also means the site will be more stable and will load more quickly. And finally, it means there will be a tighter integration between the components.

    Will it look and operate the same?

    No and yes.. All forums more or less operate the same way and while there will be a slight learning curve as you figure out the new layout, it won’t take long before the new way will become second nature.

    In regard to the look, we are going with something almost entirely new. We brought on our favorite Graphic Design company, Ever & Oak to revisit our logo for Predatorium. Again, we wanted to pay homage to the Lair while also giving you something new and E&O provided that for us in a big way! Their logo greatly influenced the rest of the look of the new site which is very simple, very clean, and most of all, mobile friendly… which may not seem like a big deal at first glance, but with more than 1/3 of visitors coming to the site on mobile devices, it was very important to us that we provide a mobile friendly look!

    Just to warn you… one of the biggest changes you are going to see is that we have switched from a theme in which the text is light and the background is dark to one in which the background is light and the text is dark. That is definitely a big change for us, but one that is important for both the mobile friendly aspect and for readability. It will take a little getting used to, but in the long run, it is a better and more modern approach.

    Anything else?

    While we have been able to successfully import the vast majority of data and content, there are a few exceptions
    • Certain avatars will not convert properly and will be lost. This will only impact a small number of members.
    • Sales feedback will not import at all. It will be lost and we will have to make a fresh start on this.
    • Post counts have been recalculated based on the posts that are actually on the site as it exists today. What does this mean? Your post count is accurate based on the existing content on the site and does not include deleted posts from the past.

    When is this happening?

    Unless we run into trouble, our plan is to close the site late Thursday night, Jan 29 and reopen it on Monday, February 2. This will allow us time to make this transition!
    SwedePredator likes this.

    TRI LASER Hunter

    Not so hot on the name tbh. I would have gone with The predators lair myself or something to that effect. Oh and where was this feedback coming from? Because I didn't get chance to chime in on that. So anyway.. this place is done then? I understand the changes that are to be made but cant this site still operate for people to come here as well? Feels like this place is just being killed off and all traces gone. Sad times.  :(
    Deoran and Art Andrews like this.
  3. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    If you want, I could get into the technical aspects of the name change... a lot of it has to do with Search, Discovery and SEO.

    And is this place done? Absolutely not. Until the members of the community are done this place isn't done because the community isn't the site... it isn't the look (which has changed numerous times), it isn't the software (which has changed numerous times). It is the people. As has been pointed out in the other thread, the community is at an all-time low which makes this the time to make a move like this.

    As is ALWAYS the case, new things are always uncomfortable when they are new and especially when you have had something stay the same for so long, it feels even more uncomfortable, but in a short time, it will pass and no one will be that upset.

    For the complainers and those who want to have an issue with the community (not you TRI_LASER... those people know who they are)... well, they weren't participating anyway, so we haven't really lost anything by them continuing not to do so.

    TRI LASER Hunter

    I understand the tech change Art, And I understand the whole "We are the lair" stuff. But it just feels like the end of an era that's all. But I hope the new site thrives that's all.
    Art Andrews likes this.
  5. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    It is definitely the end of one era, but it is the beginning of another and the community started by Andew and built by many of you will persist in one form or another. I hope the community thrives as well. We certainly have an uphill battle considering the juggernaut that is Facebook... time will tell.


    TRI LASER Hunter

    Thing is, yet again there was no discussion or vote on THIS site about the name that's all.
  7. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    On matters of that scale, there rarely if ever will be... and we never vote on anything. I am more than willing to discuss a number of things, like the split that is being asked for in the forums, but even then, you will never see us vote on things. At best, we might take a poll on something.

    On something at the level of a name change, I know it seems counter-intuitive, but to put that up to discussion would simply be to invite every person with a beef to throw out more negativity for a community they aren't even participating in to begin with. All you have to do is look at the latest thread about how the community has changed to see that.


    TRI LASER Hunter

    I just feel if the community cant have a say then what's the point really. I just think the whole new site and name will drive many more people away when we are supposed to be bringing people together. But what do I know, I'm just one voice. There are many more to be heard.
  9. xdmray

    xdmray Elite Hunter

    hmm,  not really diggin the name either.  So will the 405th, and dented helmet get renamed eventually as well?  it seems a little weird to get feedback from FB but not here.  not really bitchin and moaning,  just telling you how i feel.
    TRI LASER likes this.
  10. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    Mike, not sure I follow. Members have ZERO say in what Facebook does and while many people complain, everyone is there and many of the naysayers here sure seem to love it there... despite the fact that they have even less control. At least here you DO have a voice and on many things you do have an opportunity to share you concerns, just as you are doing now.

    In terms of driving people away... well, that ship has sailed and that is part of the reasoning behind this. This community was on a downward slide when I came here and has continued to slide down as social media has ramped up. From a practical standpoint, you can't really have people not be here MORE than they are now... which again is why now is the time to make a change like this.

  11. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    TDH is likely to get renamed at some point as it suffers from some of the exact issues that the Lair does. It is unlikely that the 405th will be as it has standing with 343 and Microsoft already.

    In regard to getting feedback from FB... it was happenstance. We didn't go out to Facebook and seek feedback... it was actually just a personal post I made about a year and a half ago that a number of people happened to respond to and the name came out of that discussion.


    BATIMAN Blooded

    The new name may attract real predators of the deviant nature lol....

    Am up for whatever.. The important thing for me is this place will still be around despite its name change ....

    Art Andrews likes this.
  13. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    LOL.. Alex, that is actually a point that was brought up before. When I was originally looking, we were considering "Predatorial" (get it... tutorial.. Predator... ok... whatever ;)) and a number of people were like, "you will be getting visits from Chris Hansen with a name like that."

  14. Lowdmekon

    Lowdmekon Hunter

    I still think we should have kept the word "Lair" in there somewhere.
  15. wonko

    wonko Hunter

    I'm anxious to see it, but I have a feeling the new site is going to be over-run with pedophiles... :(

  16. Lowdmekon

    Lowdmekon Hunter

  17. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    Conveniently, you all have plasma canons to handle that kind of scum.

  18. Lowdmekon

    Lowdmekon Hunter

    Is there no way we can keep the word "Lair" in there somewhere?
  19. kithunter

    kithunter Elite Hunter

    "The end of one era, but it is the beginning of another and the community started by Andew and built by many of you will persist in one form or another."

    Feeling a sense of sadness "the hunters lair" will no longer exist in it's current format...  to everyone who has passed through these forums sharing your passion and dedication to the forum I thank you for all the years. We built something really special here...and it has grown and influenced so many throughout the world...for that I am so proud of this place, I put my heart and soul into it and my spirit and tone set the mark for all to feel welcome,
    from the 14 year old kid who built his first gauntlet out of Pringles to the movie quality suits , drawings, sculpts, bio, artwork...the list goes on with what influence we have had in costuming and fabrication.  we set the mark

    Even my so called "enemies"...I hope you have successful lives and keep on creating no matter what form it takes.  life is too short to hold anger, be happy and creative always.
    so where do I stand in the new era?..am I as spock said, have I gotten too old to have outlived my usefulness?...nah, I would love to build another suit and give encouragement and advice to anyone who knocks on my door. 

    PREDATORIUM?......the name seems a little broad stroked but I was never about the name it was about the spirit and the members..it's arts company and his call.

    i'm still passionate about the hobby I created...always will be.


    Talmak, Art Andrews and pdisc like this.
  20. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    Well said. No matter what we call this community, the power is not in the name, but in the spirit and the members.

  21. Mr Fett

    Mr Fett Elite Hunter

    I’ve been on TDH since day 1, and I’ve been on The Hunter’s Lair since day 1. Literally. Since, like Kithunter said, it feels like the original group will vanish with Predatorium, what about doing something like TDH does? Meaning everyone knows it as The Dented Helmet, and the web url is that same name, but then when you actually go to the forum, it says The Dented Helmet (the site name), and in smaller font underneath it says “A Star Wars costuming resource – The authority on Boba Fett”. So to make the current board members here blend with the incoming new members who will know it as Predatorium, why not do a header wording like TDH does when people go to the forum page, making it say:
    The Hunter’s Lair
    …..very much like the way TDH has their forum header? For all intents and purposes, everything about the new site would be PREDATORIUM….but the title page only would reflect the old name into it that way.
    Ice likes this.
  22. Art Andrews

    Art Andrews Community Owner

    Funny you mention that, Andy. When we were building this, we literally did that with the banner!  Great minds!
  23. wonko

    wonko Hunter

    You do know that they're not real, right?

  24. Lowdmekon

    Lowdmekon Hunter

    I like the sound of that, is that achievable?

    And I agree I'll still be here Iraspect of the name, I'm here because of what I enjoy.

    A great man once said. " I don't do special effects. I do characters. I do creatures " Long live Stan long live the "Lair" we do The Creature !!

    One Ugly Mutha Fukka


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