So, which of the new forum scripts would be best for a new site?

Discussion in 'Community Forum Software' started by CM30, Mar 8, 2014.

  1. CM30

    CM30 Regular Member

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    Out of the likes of Wedge, Elkarte, Vanilla, Discourse, etc, which would be best for an experimental new site I'm starting about the Wario series?

    Yes, I know most are still in beta. But come on, the WarioWare sub series is already basically a Nintendo tech demo franchise. So why not make the forum as experimental and wacky as the games?


    View: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87sCDkT6xPM



    View: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNAVDNrfiNA


    Above: What 'wacky' means here

    So which one should I try? I've got a download of:

    Vanilla
    Elkarte
    Wedge
    And a few others

    So what's a wacky and experimental forum script recommendation? I asked on TAZ, but no one recommendation kept coming up, and it seems many people refuse to recommend anything other than scripts that have been around for years or paid software.

    Just keep in mind it can't be hosted. I have no idea how big the audience for this series is (other than it probably exists), and I also don't really have the money for any more monthly fees.
     
  2. AWS

    AWS Administrator Admin Talk Staff

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    I like Vanilla and if I was to start another forum I'd use it. I always use recent posts when visiting any site and Vanilla is perfect for this. I have a test Vanilla site that I imported a million posts from a closed vbulletin forum into it. I have been messing with the themes and addons to get familiar with it. I do like it.

    While I like Discourse because of its similarity to Vanilla I don't like the endless page scroll. I prefer paginated results.

    If you use one of those 2 you'd be using something new and would be going against the norm, but, wouldn't something rather than standard forum list that millions of sites use be attractive to the new generation of internet users?

    People love Twitter and Facebook because you can engage in conversation on one page. Vanilla and Discourse allow this. I have seen a few sites starting to realize this and instead of using a standard forum layout will use the post view as the main site and using a hack to display all threads from the forum hierarchy in one forum and use that forum post view as the main page. All forums are still accessible and linked to for users that prefer that method.
     
    Rocket 442 and BamaStangGuy like this.
  3. Superboy

    Superboy Most Likely, I'm Insane.

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    See I am a bit of the opposite. I've seen a few vanilla forums and played around with vanilla and it's entire layout just rubbed me the wrong way and I honestly have a hard time seeing the appeal.

    But you're making me want to actually give it another look, perhaps because it is different from the likes of the more popular/old school softwares is why i have a hard time adapting to it.

    Will be giving it another look!

    In regards to the OP, i have no experience or knowledge of these software but i always encourage people to go against the norm and try something a bit different and a software like vanilla could be a good idea for you or any of these software you listed. In the end it matters which is the best software that YOU as the administrator can utilize to its full extent without much of a learning curve.
     
  4. Code Monkey

    Code Monkey Regular Member

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    I am opposite too I guess. I have never seen a Vanilla site that I liked. They always seem to be feature lacking and cumbersome. Personally I don't think you can go wrong with XenForo.
     
  5. Ludwig

    Ludwig Regular Member

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    There's nothing wackier than going with vB5. :p
     
  6. ZeroHour

    ZeroHour Regular Member

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    I just took a small gander at burning board 4, I have to say its very very fast and slick.
     
  7. Adrian Schneider

    Adrian Schneider Regular Member

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    This is something I've really struggled with over the past few years. If you want a forum, there are a dozen viable choices that will probably be good enough. If you want a community platform, and one that won't shoot you in the foot as you try and grow, then that's a real battle. Your choice will also depend if you prefer configuration or if you prefer programmability. Pick one.

    vBulletin is a horrible platform to develop on, but it has the maturity on the community management and tools side. The ecosystem is still the best, IMO. You can probably get by if you're willing to spend an enormous amount of time maintaining it and subsidizing its age with better styles and add-ons. Shelf life is looking bad... I'm not sure how much longer people will support it.

    XenForo is a bit more modern, but not as mature. The ecosystem is still pretty new, so it's hard to find things, and it's even harder to find the right way to do things. As a developer, it makes a pretty good platform (technology is a few years outdated, but that beats vBulletin by a landslide). The tooling is very far behind though, so it's still not entirely developer friendly. However, as an admin, there is a pretty good array of add-ons and styles. Oddly enough, the XF community has taken kindly the professional services much more than vBulletin.

    Discourse is the newest technology, and arguably the best forum experience. However, it'll take a lot more work to host and maintain, and you'll need to have more modern development skills to have a chance at modifying it yourself. The architecture is great for software developers, but much harder to go in and add a full-stack feature (front-end, back-end, etc.) all by yourself. I can't speak to its configuration and ecosystem, but I'm guessing it's pretty weak and immature at this point. If you want just a forum, and you're more technically inclined, this is probably a good bet.

    I can't comment much on IBP. The new version looks promising, but regrettably I haven't had much experience with it over the years.

    I personally wouldn't consider any other forums for serious projects, but that's just due to my own bias hovering around vBulletin and its surrounding community too closely.
     

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