Making of a gaming website is a much more complicated task than an inexperienced user may think. Of course, if you start building it with CMS or even try to write a website code in the text editor, this will be a real challenge.
It’s almost impossible to do that without any experience at all. You’ll need to learn a lot to get decent result. However, there is a simpler solution – the use of website builders. It will work well both for newbies and experienced users.
A gaming website is a general name of the category for several types of niche resources, namely websites of gaming clans and guilds, fan communities, gaming servers, websites of developers and game reviewers. It is possible to single out narrow niches devoted to game characters, cyber sports teams or separate gamers, attribute stores (sport shirts, costumes, statuettes, versatile sets etc.).
Generally, the term “gaming website” encompasses any thematic communities, commercial projects, informational resources that focus on computer games, their characters and individual gamers.
The technical complexity of realization is closely connected with the functionality needed to create a certain type of a gaming website. Such projects have many requirements to the choice of a platform. A website can encompass a gaming server, an online store, a forum, a blog and multiple widgets.
The choice of a specialized website builder is the best solution to this task. This is a surefire way to get the required functionality out-of-the-box. Not every website builder can be used to create a gaming website.
The most reasonable solution is uCoz – absolutely free gaming website builder. Another decent variant is Enjin, which is a specialized service used to build gaming websites. You may also try using Wix to launch this type of website. This is a powerful website builder, which works well for fan websites. It comes with nice website design customization tools and offers proper organization of communication within the community.
How to Choose a Gaming Website Builder?
Let’s assume that a web developer is quite an experienced user. The rest of the terms of gaming website creation in this case are as follows:
- A website builder should allow creating a forum and a blog to provide news about a guild or a game;
- A service should be either free or inexpensive – ordinary users won’t have a desire to pay much for it;
- Flexible design customization settings – it is necessary to use the color palette of a guild or the main symbols of a game, when creating website design;
- Opportunity to create a complex menu and link hierarchy, which will represent a branched website structure. As a rule, a sidebar with sections containing useful links are used at such websites;
- Availability of a specific feature set like polls, normal FAQs, quick chat etc.;
- Opportunity to stream from Twitch and other suchlike services. This means that a website builder should allow editing web page codes.
We have provided the major requirements, which are quite impressive. The prevailing amount of website builders and CMS cannot be used because of the requirement to launch a forum. The rest of the services prove to be useless as well because of the need to use code editing options and free nature of the system. The reality is that uCoz is the best website builder to launch a guild website.
1. uCoz – The Best Free Gaming Website Builder
uCoz is the only free website builder, which can be used to launch a full-featured gaming website for a guild or a clan. A free plan provides 400MB of disk space, multiple templates (if you make a search on external platforms, you can even find thematic templates for certain games), powerful design customization and website code editing options, a rich set of modules (including a forum, a blog, a poll, a catalogue of files, articles, FAQ and more) as well as an opportunity to connect your own domain name for free!
A notable disadvantage is a service ad displayed on a website, created with a free plan. Frankly speaking, it is absolutely harmless in this particular case. A website is non-commercial, it is used for clan members and potential candidates only.
Guild members will certainly accept this demerit. However, if you have a desire to get rid of the ad and avail more disk storage space, you can always subscribe to the cheapest plan – only $2.99/month. This is affordable even for a standard schoolboy, not to mention working gamers.
uCoz offers a variety of modules to realize these options. Here is the list of actions you should complete in the system:
- Registration. You can sign up for the service via email, social network account or a universal UID brand identifier.
- Now, you should choose one of free templates. There are over 300 of them here. Select the newer one with responsive design (there is a search filter option for this purpose here).
- The next step is to choose a starter set of active modules. We recommend using the following ones for the start: guest book, forum, news, chat, photo albums, video, polls and FAQ. If there is something missing, you’ll be able to add that later. That’s not a problem.
- Create a menu system, where you will add the main static pages and modules (regulations, list of guild members, admission requirements, history, forum, news etc.).
- Customize the design (change the background, colors, fonts) or download a template from a free brand store collection, install and set it up following the instructions.
- It is high time to set up modules now. To do that, you should create forum sections, enable user registration feature, add news to the separate menu section and set up the output format, add a poll and a guest book to the sidebar etc.
Having completed these actions, you will get a framework to fill a clan website with content. Let’s discuss this point in details now.
What Content Works Best for a Gaming Website?
It’s not obligatory to limit the content to welcoming newbies, enlisting guild members and providing a calendar. You can go further by creating a decent and useful clan website. This is what you can do about it:
- You can implement a gaming database: character types, skills, tactics, tabular statistics data sorted by units, weapons, magic, promotion methods, description of specific features of different locations, various tricks and lots of other issues – the set depends upon a game;
- Guild or clan admission terms – you should clearly describe the requirements to newbies as well as the benefits they will avail, being admitted into your clan or guild. Create an online admission form to be filled out by the candidates;
- You can add a news column concerning your game – it will provide information about the upcoming updates, events held by the developers, various discounts, temporary bonuses;
- It is also possible to organize Twitch channel streams at your website, publish educational videos (upload them to YouTube and then add to the website), hold gaming streams. Generally, you can provide registered guild gamers with an opportunity to hold streams via a website. It is even possible to organize the collection of donations on the streams, if you have such a desire;
- We recommend making a news feed at the home page, providing information about gaming events. Don’t forget to mention the name of a guild game somewhere on a visible place. This is because a bystander may not understand, where he/she is, when visiting your website for the first time;
- Highlight all the important topics by adding them to a forum. This should encompass game bugs, random chat, updates reviews, discussions about the classes, weapons, tactics etc. You should also add a web page with a clan member list and brief description of each account (level, profession, awards, contacts etc.);
- You can create a gaming photo album, which will include important screenshots, gaming renders, wallpapers etc.
The content depends a lot upon the game itself, you can publish any information, which has direct or indirect relation to your clan and game. It is interesting that you don’t have to publish unique articles, rewriting original news from other resources. You can copy and paste them, without being bothered about the result.
Yes, this is a huge problem for commercial websites, but there is nothing you should be concerned with, unless you have the intention to monetize your clan website. This is hardly possible. Thus, there are no restrictions here. What really matters is the use for the gaming community. By the way, your website, built with uCoz, can have several moderators as you shouldn’t be the only person responsible for website management!
2. Enjin – a Specialized Gaming Site Constructor
The general essence of working with Enjin is as follows: you choose a project type and a certain game, get almost a readymade website with thematic design and a set of modules, connect extra modules and delete those you don’t need, fill out information at static pages, set up modules, add synchronization with social network accounts and other external services.
You have 14 days to do the tasks mentioned above – that’s how long the trial lasts. Then you buy the required plan, connect the domain name to the website and publish it. Let’s discuss that in details now.
Enjin offers several work scenarios: creation of a guild website (WOW, Guild Wars 2, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Black Desert, Star Citizen, The Elder Scrolls Online, Final Fantasy Online, Unturned, League of Legends, Rust, Garry’s Mod), a clan (Arma 3, Battlefield, World of Tanks, Call of Duty, Counter Strike, GTA V, Overwatch), a gaming Minecraft server, a fan website and an eSports Team (League of Legends, Counter Strike, Dota 2, World of Tanks).
The service has 335 thematic templates with demo-content and optimal structure for more online games, including Destiny, EVE, Halo, Aion, Warhammer, Diablo and many other games one can choose in the dashboard after the initial website setup.It is also possible to create templates from scratch in the built-in visual editor. Thus, the platform works great for creating websites for different gaming projects – new, old, future or your own.
Depending upon the type of a website you work on, the set of used features will differ as well. Enjin comes with a rich choice of modules, settings and integrations. Not every gaming website needs the entire set.
Let’s provide the guidelines on working with the platform, using the creation of a World of Warcraft gaming guild website as an example.
The preparation stage is pretty simple.
- Having chosen a type of a gaming website, you will be offered to select a WOW server, specify the guild name and the subdomain.
- Then you’ll have to provide your e-mail as a login, a nickname you will use to communicate at the website and an admin password.
- Right after that, you will be redirected to your website, which comes with all the required elements: menu structure (home, forums, members, events, gallery, progress), registration and search modules, versatile counters, online chat, WOW RSS-feed, news, rating of gamers and extra features typical for a website of this type.
An access link to the admin panel is found above the website header. To adjust the website with regard to your individual parameters, you have to do the following:
- Access the “Pages” section. This is where you can switch between website pages and edit the available set of containers in each of them. You can move the block dimensions, forming their structure and functionality of each separate page. You can also set up a header here (image, height, background, font, alignment, effects), main menu, submenu and footer, adding any modules to it.
By clicking a module (for example, a forum or news), you can write a post, create a new topic for discussion, set up access rights, block format and content, design and other elements depending upon the character of a chosen module. It’s worth mentioning that you can create your own modules in the “Modules” section and look through the list of installed modules as well as the complete list (there are 37 out-of-the-box modules here). Choose the pages, the sequence and the types of modules you plan to use. There are no limitations here.
Having coped with this challenging part of the task, you will get a readymade website template to come up to your task. Create your unique structure or leave the format offered by default.
- Now you need to start filling out static website pages like contacts or gallery, add posts to the news section, create forum branches, add links to your groups in social networks and RSS feeds, add events to the calendar etc. In other words, you have to proceed from the website structure and functionality to filling out the pages and modules with content. This is done in the same “Pages” section.
- Separate attention should be given to SEO settings, including Google Analytics set up, filling out meta tags (description, keywords and title) for the entire website and separate pages.
You can set up URL and meta-tags in the special Page Settings block of the “Pages” section. This has to be done for each website page that comes with content.
- Then you have to choose a suitable plan – Advanced ($86.30 per year) or Ultimate ($287.90 per year). In both cases, you will get a domain name of your choice as a bonus and the entire website functionality. The difference between the plans is in the amount of available benefits they offer – Mumble or TS3 Server slots (platforms of voice communication), disk storage space etc. Choose a domain name, connect SSL and show your website to all your friends.
It is high time to work in the “Settings” section now. Fill out basic information, choose layout type (fixed or liquid), add your code (counters of statistics collection systems, external social bar, online chat etc.), synchronization with the Twitch channel, set up the time zone, language etc.
These are the major steps you’ll have to complete to create a gaming website with Enjin. You can change website design, add a new model to the chosen position, view the statistics on any registered user and general website statistics, a list of installed modules and pages they are found at any moment you wish.
The platform makes it possible to set up user rights in details, their statuses, rewards, penalties in the “Users” section. This can be done later. At the initial stage, it is enough to complete the actions described above.
This is how you will get a thematic gaming WOW guild website with a blog, forum, event schedule, SEO settings and website design, which is unique in its structure.
Other types of websites are created in a similar way. A set of modules, template, access settings and some general settings will change in the process of website creation depending upon the type chosen.
The general principle of creating a website with Enjin remains the same. It will take you from 2 days and up to 2 weeks to cope with the task depending upon the complexity of design customization and the amount of content to be added.
3. Wix – an Easy Way to Create a Game Website
Wix is a decent choice for creating a fan website with a blog, forum and even an online store. It may also be a nice tool for publishing promo pages and the release website version of a website developer.
This out-of-the-box system is not meant to work with gaming websites as there are even no niche templates here. Basically, fan and guild websites are promo websites with blogs, specific widgets like statistics, voting polls, event schedules and, maybe, a forum with an online store.
Wix functionality allows realizing all these tasks and even more. That is why, we recommend using this website builder to create all types of gaming websites, except for gaming servers.
It is better to use a blank template with a classic structure or a wide header, when working on your gaming website. It doesn’t make any sense to choose a thematic template and then delete the images, widgets and text you don’t need.
A more preferable solution is to start from scratch, taking into account that Wix is the leader, when it comes to design. Absolute positioning is used, when adding the elements. This means that there will be no restrictions, when managing the blocks with widgets. Place and set them up as you need. Wix WYSIWYG editor is very functional.
Wix apps also matter a lot, when it comes to creating a website. By using them, we realize a notable part of functionality required for a guild (or a clan) website.
You can express your creativity here. It is interesting to create a website from scratch in a convenient editor without a readymade solution. Let’s describe how to do that using a blank classic template in a few simple steps:
- Edit a main menu, creating the required number of pages with suitable hierarchy and sequence. Click the menu, choose the settings and create a structure of your future website. For example, you can use the same scheme a professional Enjin website builder offers out-of-the-box: Home, Forum, Members, Recruitment, Events, Media, Game Info.
- Now you need to design the pages that come up to our task. This process falls into several stages, namely:
- Add a blog to the website (“Add” menu – “Blog”). You’ll see another point in the main menu, while a new section with blog settings will be added in the editor sidebar of the dashboard. Open it, choose the blog elements, select any template and add it to the Home page. Let the new materials be visible right from the start. Get to the “Menu and Pages” section and hide the “Blog” menu point. There is no need to make a separate duplicate page for a news section. It is impossible to delete this page. Otherwise, the entire Wix Blog functionality will disappear. That’s why, we just hide it.
- Add a user registration button and a thematic image to the header, provide the name and logo of your guild, add links to the groups in the social networks and a website search widget. Then fill out the tab columns under the header with images and write small texts (for example, 3 achievements of your guild). You can insert a video slider with epic gameplay moments of your team, add a block with game registration links, tech support, tutorials, YouTube and Twitch official channels etc.
- If there is a need to add new widgets and space for them, add a “Stripe” widget and place any blocks in the forms of columns, tabs, images, videos or text in it. Adding a user chat to the home page will also be useful (it makes sense to use a LiveChatRoom app, for example).
- Now you need to add a forum to the website by installing a Wix Forum application. The page and the menu point will be created automatically. Make the sections, set up forum template and design.
- “Members” page should be designed, using Wix Members app. Set up registration parameters, after which information about new guild members will be added to this page. You can also use a chart or a list of guild members with their nicknames, character classes, levels, team specialization etc.
- At the “Recruitment” page, you can add a website registration form for newbies consisting of the following fields: nickname, gaming server, issues that are important when it comes to the admission to the guild.
- Wix Events functionality can be provided at the “Events” page. You can announce the upcoming events (meetings, updates, achievements) by adding a calendar and banners.
- Gaming videos, screenshots and gaming graphics can be available at the “Media” page. They can be designed as galleries or randomly – it is up to you to decide that.
- Game Info is the page, which should focus on various FAQ, links to useful gaming resources, YouTube and other channels, descriptions of classes, weapons, tactics and other related nuances.
- Having designed the functionality of web pages and added content, you should proceed to general questions associated with the organization of website performance. Access the website dashboard and connect the systems of analytics collection, add website email, fill out website data, favicon etc.
- It is high time to choose the suitable plan. The best solution to meet our needs is Combo that costs $99 per year. You will get a free domain name, 3 GB of disk storage space and premium support of your website. However, if you’re on a budget, you may also create a website free of cost using basic packages. In this case you’ll display the platform’s logo on your webpages and your functionality will be somewhat limited.
- Now, you can start working with Wix SEO wizard – the application for website search optimization. You will be offered to fill out several fields (name, region, website type, keywords etc.). After that, the system will form your personal checklist with actions, having completed which your website will become SEO-friendly. Pay maximum attention to this issue.
- Connect domain name and publish your website.
Generally, gaming websites come with a dark background (black, brown, grey) and light font (white, light-grey). You will also be able to design a similar website. This will trigger proper perception of its design by the target audience.
You should also work with a fonts scheme. It is better to find a font typical for menu points, titles etc. The main text should be readable. Do not use more than 3 fonts in general and add transition effects when scrolling and switching between the pages. A gaming website may be bright, so, don’t limit your imagination.
Useful Add Ons For a Gaming Website
A set of upgrades depends upon the type of a website you have. For example, gaming fan websites can rarely offer their visitors forum communication.
A forum is a must for the communities of gaming websites, but not all the webmasters make use of its functionality. Wix and Enjin have out-of-the-box forum functionality and you have to make use of it. This will add to your website popularity.
Sell Game-Connected Goods:
You can also connect an online store to your gaming website. This is a smart idea, which can help you make profit when managing your website. Create a separate page with a product show window, organize shipping and acceptance of online payments. An online store is an effective addition to the websites of game developers, large communities and reviewers, who have high traffic rate. However, it is possible to sell sports shirts, cups, statuettes and other things even at the website of an advanced guild. What you need is desire to do that.
Another element you can add to your website is online chat, which is a convenient form of communication between you and your website visitors. This is a useful addition to any gaming website, especially the one, where you sell games, attributes, have a donate feature or something like that. Stay in touch with your audience.
We also recommend using brand iOS/Android apps from Enjin and Wix. Due to them, you will see your website statistics on the go, add new content, communicate with subscribers and do other things in the mobile mode.
Share Your Content:
Don’t forget to use RSS-feed, synchronization with gaming servers like Twitch, video hostings, official game website, accounts of social networks, thematic channels and everything you can find on the topic. Let your website be the source of useful information about the game and bring much satisfaction to the audience.
Even if you sell products, you can try collecting the donations for the development of the website. Some games collect donations for certain community members responsible for the development of the game, new equipment for professional teams, rent of premises for user meetings or something like that. It is up to you to manage your donations.
Pay attention to each community member. Set up parameters for user achievements (number of posts, comments, birthday etc.), which will generate congratulations, new statuses or virtual gifts, for example.
It is also possible to organize a voice server, online email distribuition (if needed), any contests for the guild members or subscribers, add music to the website etc. A set of upgrades depends upon the type of your website, goals you pursue and imagination. Enjin and Wix make it possible to realize many useful features.
It makes sense to use niche website builders to create gaming websites. uCoz is the best free gaming website builder, which works great for the development and management of clan or guild websites. The service comes with multiple templates, customization tools, modules, code editing options and other features needed to launch a decent gaming website.
Enjin is an affordable specialized gaming website builder. This is the ideal solution for the majority of users willing to create a gaming website, be it a fan, guild, eSports team website or a gaming server. Abundance of gaming templates, modules, versatility of settings and integrations as well as easy website development process make Enjin a worthy web building tool in the gaming niche.
Due to the design editing features and a set of applications, Wix works great for creating websites of game developers, reviewers of gaming projects, fan websites or web stores of gaming attributes. The WYSIWYG editor, rich choice of templates, design options, widgets and add-ons allow creating decent gaming websites with ease and convenience.
To sum it up, uCoz is the best choice for gamers, Enjin is a specialized gaming website builder, while Wix is a decent solution for those, who wish to make profit on computer games and gamers. When it comes to creating a gaming website, though, the features of all these systems are very similar, but the approaches to their realization differ a lot.
The website builders reviewed in the article are very interesting and offer impressive functionality needed to develop unique website structure, design and development. We recommend starting your exploration of the systems with uCoz as it is much simpler to work with this service as compared to other website builders.