Mar 14, 2016

OpTic Gaming Website Design

OpTic Gaming is one of the world's leading eSports organisations. Their site had so much potential so I built an un-commissioned prototype to improve on the aesthetics and user experience. After reaching out to the CEO of OpTic Gaming, we decided to pursue the prototype and give some much needed love to the organisation's website.

OpTic Gaming Website Design, project thumbnail

Considering The Medium

Since the birth of OpTic Gaming in 2006, the organization and its members have used video to establish themselves as an esports powerhouse. The website should complement the content they create and not dictate it. Taking this into consideration, I needed to consider some challenges that came with video content:

All websites contain static content, though most also contain dynamic content. Whilst static content can, of course, be changed, dynamic content specifically refers to the parts of a website that the content manager updates. A good example for this is news articles.

Content First

Considering the purpose of the site, a reliable and valuable source of information is key. Dynamic content will typically be in reference to upcoming events or results from recent events. To establish OpTic as a source of news that users return to, it is important that information be clear and easy to find. To better facilitate the communication of information throughout the site, I started with the events page and built the following pages based on what I had learnt from this.

Events

There are three types of events OpTic teams regularly compete in: online tournaments, online leagues, and LAN tournaments (Local Area Network / Offline). After listing the information users would need to know about each event type. Therefore I developed three layouts:

Teams compete against several teams in tournaments. In order to keep the events feed tidy, only the final placing is displayed in the feed.

Video

It is likely fans will continue to consume content through video and social media. This means content will often reiterate or summarise videos. The site should help the article complement the video, if needed, and provide any relevant information that the video references.

Many members of OpTic make a living online through YouTube and Twitch. It is in the interest of the organisation to promote its members who, in turn, expose OpTic to more gamers.

Powerful Profiles

Visitors to the site should understand how important each individual member is to the organization. The brand was, after all, built upon its members and their presence in the gaming community. This is why I decided to rethink the way most eSports organizations presented their teams and members.

Each team has its own page, and each player fills a considerable portion of the screen. Whilst many organizations strive to promote their own social media over its players, the OpTic brand isn’t JUST the official social media accounts, the brand consists of all its members and they take that in to consideration. Proving each of their members are esports celebrities in their own right further supports the brand.

I communicated player accomplishments through an introduction and stats for their social media.

Sponsors

I spent a lot of time considering the fans and the content, but OpTic Gaming is a business that operates to make money. The organization has a responsibility to its sponsors and partners.

OpTic already provides promotion through a variety of platforms where they communicate with their audience. Up until now, their website was not utilized to it’s full potential. I provided them with another avenue to promote their sponsors. Consequently this improves the service they offer current sponsors, and provides them with more to offer new ones.

Regular internet users become immune to conventional advertisements. This is why product placement is often a better option when promoting products. On OpTic's website I made spaces to expose sponsors to the user without interrupting their experience.