It seems that Proboards have a interesting design trend as of lately. If you look at many of the RPG boards in Proboards Support many of the admins/designers are opting for a side table on the left with various bits of information while retaining the original Proboards layout.
Just to get the balls rolling in this thread, what do you think of the designs of this new trend? Lovely? Bad? Horrendous?
Free free to post the designs of other's board (or even your own) as a point of discussion of the design. Please note that the no advertising rule still applies and if you want genuine opinions of your board personally, please post them in the Personal Showcase
I wanted to start a discussion about this too. I think there's a couple of things to be said about it.
If you remember Proboards of the old days (and did some browsing around GOAYB at Proboards Support) you'll remember how awful a lot of the newly made forums looked. It was damn near impossible to find a decent looking forum to join. I honestly don't know what it is about the side tables but they make forums (even the ones with mediocre color schemes) look better.
I think part of it is that you see alot more custom graphics than you normally would. Most people can't wrap their head around customizing the folder, thread, navigation icons; making graphics for the sidebars is just easier so at least from the main-page view the design seems a bit more cohesive. And of course, it makes everything more organized. In addition to the sidebars, you'll notice a lot of designs with a table around the forum. Which prevents the background image from clashing with the board colors or some other aspect of the design. Helps with color contrast aswell.
Take these forums for example: [Ex. 1], [Ex. 2], [Ex. 3], [Ex. 4]. Not particularly bad looking forums. Actually kinda decent. But take away the sidebars and wrap around table; it's a completely different look. Overall, the design would have very little going for it.
That said, it does get repetitive seeing it used so often. Kinda bordering on boring. I don't hate it, it's good to see the quality in design improve on Proboards. I'm just growing tired of it. To sum it up, I feel the new trends caused an increase in aesthetics, but a decrease in creativity.