Locked: Why I think Byond barely gets new developers
I don't think people are getting confused by the site. Go to http://www.byond.com. it's pretty clear that this is a system to play and create games. The left side says "Play" in big letters and the right side says "Create". I know this generation is pretty ADD-riddled but I'm pretty sure they can figure this out.
Of course a lot of developers are going to look at BYOND and decide it isn't for them, but I don't think that's out of confusion
Ultimately, I believe, and have always believed, that the success of BYOND is completely contingent on the success of BYOND games. When NEStalgia was in the spotlight for a few months, we had our biggest traffic ever and I'm sure some of those people stuck around to try making games.
Of course it's clear to the people that made it and the people that are already using it, but there's no way it's clear to the people who are seeing it for the first time.
Having a good and successful game shows what BYOND is capable of but doesn't make it appealing to use and that's ultimately what matters.
As for a video, I was thinking about making a video like this one that shows all the current best games we have. Then I remembered there's only like 3 or 4 active games worth playing and the video would probably only last a minute.
What it needs is a "Get Started" page in huge bold letters, linked from the main page that talks you through exactly how to use each program in the suite. It should explain this step by step, as most program sites would. ... it should talk you through how to use the pager ... it could explain Dream Maker, and every little function of it. This should be broken down into the different interfaces, like the code editor, icon editor, and map editor.
What it needs is a "Get Started" page in huge bold letters, linked from the main page that talks you through exactly how to use each program in the suite. It should explain this step by step, as most program sites would.
While I think a video would be great to illustrategamesand/orgame-creation,someonehasto make it.
Most BYOND users found BYOND through word of mouth. If someone tells you "hey, check out this game development tool called BYOND", you'll know what it is even if its website doesn't really tell you. I'm sure there are some people who found BYOND, knew nothing about it, and started using it. But, for each one of those people, there are many more who assumed BYOND was not the right tool for them and left.
These are the corresponding pages for submitting software to what are probably the largest free software databases online: CNET, Softpedia, and Tucows.
Not only would people be able to find BYOND on these sites, but submitting it there could have a significant effect on search engine results.