Hi MechSpecs.Members, most of us post builds by the common standard visual presentation (Smurfylink, Text, Scoreboard.Screenshots). It's easy & fast to show your created builds. But if you want to improve the Looks of your posted builds and provide some more info about the build, your gameplay tips etc. in a more structured presentation form, you might be interested in creating+using a Template with some codings, which you can always use, when you need it. The Benefits: Your Readers (most of them are new to MWO or still searching+trying some new builds on new bought Mechs) will thx you alot! What do i actually mean by improving the Looks of your posted Builds? E.g.: STK-5M Lurmageddon 2.0 AWS-8R Heavy Missile Support JM6-A Heavy Missile Support Aggressive AC/20 Striker In this short Guide i want to show you some general tips for min/maxing the visual presention of your Build Post by some standard techniques. It's not difficult, just need some of your time for Layout-Coding. So let's start the work: Guide Table of Contents - Section Headers for Structuring - Banners for Section Heads - Editor Options - Final Words [hr] 1. Section Headers for Structuring If you want to provide some Info about your build, make some Thoughts about WHAT you want to write about and in which order you want to present them. Generally you would want to say some introductional words about your post or yourself at the beginning. E.g. What was the reason, that you created+use the build? What was your initial idea? Why did you post it, while there are already so many similar builds? What are the Pros and the Cons of the build? There must be some, and you had success, because the Pros were greater than the Cons, right? Tell us pls. After the Introduction your readers might be interested in the question, why you chose this and not other Weaponsystems. Why? There must be a reason, because you could have chosen other Weaponsystems, which maybe are already posted here at Mechspecs and are good or even super good builds, but you didn't. You did your own creation and had success. So tell us something about the Weaponloadout you chose. Thereafter comes the most important and interesting part for your readers: How to play the build correctly and successfully? For most inexperienced players it isn't enough to only see the Smurfy-Datas. They want to know, how YOU played it and had success with it. Make some thoughts about how you can structure this knowledge, so you can write it down in a logical way in a section you can call e.g. Gameplay. For the readers, who doesn't have time to read all your content, but want a short info, you can provide a Summary at the Bottom of your post, also called "tl;dr"-Section including all the important points of the build. Last but not least it would be nice, if you can post some Scoreboard.Screenshots just to prove, that this build actually works great. So that sceptics will give it a try. And if you can provide some cool Gameplay-Vidz - even greater! [hr] 2. Banners for Section Heads Ok, you have the content and the structure. Now comes the fun part - the visual styling. For this you don't need much coding knowledge, but some cool layout images, which you include via img-tag. Best Layout images for forum posts are Banners! Simply style out your Sections with cool Section Banners. To create some nice Banners you can use a free Online-Tool, such like bannerfans.com. You only need some nice images, which you upload there and edit them with the given options. Make sure you don't use copyrighted images and not oversized image-files. Add the Section Names as Text and download the Banners to your computer. Next step is uploading them to the internet by an image upload service, such like tinypic.com. Use the Direct Link for Layout to include the Banner in your Post via img-Tag. [hr] 3. Editor Options Sometimes you want to use some Colors for your text to emphasize e.g. some keywords or you want to add in a List of Elements or some useful Links to other pages or other threads at Mechspecs. For these purposes you can use the given options in the Editor. To make an even better visual separation of the sections you can e.g. additionally use the hr-Tag for a horizontal rule. It's the button left to the Smurfy-Button. Make sure you don't overdo it with Colors, Links or Smileys. You want the Reader to read your content easily, and not to get eye cancer. [hr] 4. Final Words Ok, now you have the basics. If you have time, just try improving some of your posted builds with the given techniques or simply create a new one, when you have a new build for the community. If you don't have the time to implement everything you want, you can do it step by step, e.g. first you add a simple Weaponloadout & Gameplay Section (which are the most interesting part for your readers). Next you can add in some more other sections. And if you have several sections you can add in some nice Banners. Etc. etc. Do as you wish. Most important: You have fun with the work! [hr] If you are too lazy to create your own template, you can also use or edit the following one, which i use. Just replace the Markers (TEXT, SMURFYLINK, BANNERS, SCREENSHOTS, etc.) by your own stuff. Code: [img]BANNER[/img] [center][b]Original"[color=red]TEXT[/color]" Version[/b][/center] SMURFYLINK [center][b]Alternate "[color=blue]TEXT[/color]" Version[/b][/center] SMURFYLINK [center][b]Alternate "[color=green]TEXT[/color]" Version[/b][/center] SMURFYLINK [center][u][b][size=14pt]Guide Table of Contents[/b][/u] [b]- Introduction - Pros & Cons - Weaponloadout - Gameplay - Synopsis - Records[/b] [/center] [hr] [center][b]Introduction[/b][/center] [img]BANNER[/img] [center][b]Hello fearsome Mechwarrior[/b][/center] TEXT [hr] [center][b]Pros+Cons[/b][/center] [img]BANNER[/img] [color=green][b]Pros:[/b][/color] [list type=decimal] [*][color=green]TEXT[/color] [*][color=green]TEXT[/color] [*][color=green]TEXT[/color] [*][color=green]TEXT[/color] [*][color=green]TEXT[/color] [/list] [color=red][b]Cons:[/b][/color] [list type=decimal] [*][color=red]TEXT[/color] [*][color=red]TEXT[/color] [*][color=red]TEXT[/color] [/list] [hr] [center][b]Weaponloadout[/b][/center] [img]BANNER[/img] TEXT [hr] [center][b]Gameplay[/b][/center] [img]BANNER[/img] [center][b][size=14pt][u]Drop Prep[/u][/b][/center] TEXT [b]Weapon Grouping[/b] 1. TEXT 2. TEXT 3. TEXT 4. TEXT 5. TEXT TEXT [center][b][size=14pt][u]Your Role: TEXT[/u][/b][/center] [color=orange][b]In the Early Game Phase[/b][/color] TEXT [color=red][b]In the Mid Game Phase[/b][/color] TEXT [color=green][b]In the End Game Phase[/b][/color] TEXT [hr] [center][b]Synopsis[/b][/center] [img]BANNER[/img] [hr] [b]Your Role[/b]:[list] [*]TEXT [/list] [b]Gameplay[/b]:[list] [*]TEXT [*]TEXT [*]TEXT [/list] [b]Other Matters[/b]:[list] [*]TEXT [*]TEXT [/list] [hr] [center][b]Records[/b][/center] [img]BANNER[/img] TEXT [img]http://SCREENSHOT[/img] [img]http://SCREENSHOT[/img] [img]http://SCREENSHOT[/img] [hr] TEXT (Final Words+Signature) [hr] After reading this Guide you might ask yourself, Blagg, what the heck, do you have nothing better to do? Well, yeah, atm, i have time and my true reason to post this is to give new(+old) Members something to work with, so that the Posts at Mechspecs.com become better (In Visuals & Quality). You know, that we are linked by the official forum, do you? So if you post something, make sure it is of Quality. This here is a min/max site. So not only min/max your Builds, but also your Posts, for everyone here. Your Readers will be grateful. Thank you very much. Blagg *Edit (06.10.2014): This Guide is outdated since the Migration to the new Forum Software. But you still can use the framework for structuring your own Guide. Simply remove the Multimedia-Tags (smurfy, img, youtube) with the Add Media Function (Button in the Editor).