Should the Will of the Ancients be sponsored?

Geoff recently got an email from, asking if TWotA would like to be sponsored. I’m not sure what to think of the idea to be honest, but Neil suggested that I post about it here to get the advice of you guys. I’ve pasted the email below (hopefully Graham won’t mind), rather than explaining it in my own words:

[quote=“Graham”]Dear Geoffrey Duke,

Graham Parker here, I used to write Dreamcast Weekly (later named Sega World
Weekly), and being a Sega related site, perhaps you heard of it (don’t worry
if you haven’t, lol!)? Right now though, I’m working as an intern at
Lik-Sang, so greetings from Hong Kong! As you probably know, Sega sites are
a somewhat dying breed these days, so it’s good to see one still updating,
and in particular keeping the Panzer Dragoon series alive with so much
content. We’re actually looking for new sites to support here, and would
love to be a sponsor of the The Will of the Anicents.

Of course banners and such wouldn’t suit your website, but for the last
month of my internship here I’ve received TONS of great items, giveaways and
discount codes for contests, reviews and so on. I’ll be leaving come August
31, but until then, I wanted to ask if we can work something out to sponsor
your site. The target of all this though, is to get new contacts with web
sites out there and of course have some people linking to us, or even better
going to shop on our website.

Perhaps many of your visitors are already getting some of their stuff from
us, import gaming is BIG nowadays and we make it really easy :smiley: Just
quickly, here’s a list of what we could possibly do (please understand that
this depends on the approval of staff here) and also on the products

  • Competition with prizes like import games
  • Sending you free samples for reviews
  • Some hot free giveaways (Counter Strike Strap, anybody?)
  • Discount Codes for your site (linked to you, you even get commission)
  • Personal 10% discount for all your own orders
  • Sponsorships are usually continued throughout the year

How does that sound?

Graham “Tails” (still remembers being blown away by the intro to PD, and
even title after that in fact)[/quote]

So, should the Will of the Ancients be sponsored? It doesn’t need sponsoring, but it’s something that might improve things. If you think it should be, in what way could sponsorship help the community?

this seems like an appropriate time to bring up something i’ve been wondering for a while now.

how much traffic does twota and the twota forums get? when i joined the forums, the amount of active members that i saw was a very small fraction of the number of registered members and since then i’ve seen perhaps 15 new members join but none of them seemed to have stuck around past a week or so.

it just strikes me as odd that they would approach you about giving you money when the userbase of this site doesn’t appear to span beyond a handfull of dedicated PD fans.

well as long as nothing garish gets added to the site, i don’t see a problem with it (not that i’m for or against the idea that).

i have a theory hosted on the site… i demand a cut >:D

The amount of traffic has decreased in recent months.

Wow, Graham Parker sure gets around, I still remember working with him for Sega2000 (although I came in after he handed it off to someone else, so he didn’t have a lot of involvement while I was there). Suprised he’s working for Lik-sang now…

Anyway, it would be a bit wierd seeing WOTA sponsored, but I don’t have any problem with it (especially if it means free stuff :wink: ). I wouldn’t even mind a small banner or two, but it sounds like they certainly aren’t planning a takeover of the site like some advertisers do (gamefaqs…). Perhaps a contest or giveaway would do the site some good, at the very least it couldn’t hurt it, and it might attract a few new people (some of which might actually stay for longer than a week!).

Are they actually offering you money in return? Or just the free items and discounts listed?
EDIT: I was gonna buy something from there a few days ago!! (yeah off topic… kinda)

Hmm… sponsorship itself doesn’t sound like a bad thing, but it’s hard to say more without knowing what exactly they’d want to do in TWotA’s case (what exactly the drawbacks and advantages would be, if any). If you’re not against the whole idea Solo, it might be worth getting in touch and finding out some more details at some stage.

So… what exactly would we be doing for them? I see that list of stuff he’s written and it all sounds good, but what does he expect us to put on the site in return? I would absolutely despise banner ads, pop-up ads, big ads down the side like Gamefaqs, anything like that.

I assume that when he said “banners and such wouldn’t suit your website” that any sort of ads would be small, and not Gamespy/IGN style with banners and flash ads pasted over every inch of the site. I’d flat out refuse to place any sort of pop up or pop under ads on TWotA.

At the core of any sort of arrangement would be the benefits that our site and visitors got from any sort of sponsership. Like Lance said, it would be probably be best to find out more details before making any sort of desision, but at the moment a lot of the things that Graham mentioned probably wouldn’t be appliciable to TWotA, but rather a bigger gaming fansite like Shining Force Central.

But anyway, thanks for the opinions and thoughts that have been posted here so far (and what several of you have told me on MSN/Yahoo). I’ll keep you posted.

Email Number 2:

[quote=“Graham”]Hey Chris,

Thanks for writing back. Wow, you have some copies of Press Start too?
That’s great!! Thanks :slight_smile: Can I ask how you got Press Start? I have to
honestly say the same about your website too, I was extremely impressed.
There’s so much history and detail in the world of Panzer Dragoon, it was
excellent to see a website dedicated to it all.

That’s a good point about being limited though. It’d be a little different
if another PD game was coming out in Japan soon, but yeah I think promotions
would have to focus on things like Saturn controllers / adapters, import /
memory carts, cables and such. Good ways for Panzer Dragoon gamers to
improve the picture quality of their games, play imports and such, but not a
massive range.

Just read through the message board post there, and yeah I was thinking
small adverts, and actually we don’t recommend pop ups, full page ads,
flying flash adverts or anything like that… as someone who surfs a lot of
websites, I know exactly how annoying those are, and in particular with your
website, which I feel has a certain dignity about it, it’d just ruin the

What we’d recommend (and of course everything is entirely up to you if you
do decide to go ahead with it) is a small text link saying something like
"Buy your import games from our sponsor, Lik", perhaps our small
search engine box, and of course maybe promotions for big Sega games when
released. The benefits would really be a comission (for example if someone
buys a controller, it’s 8%) to help put a little money towards the website.
I’m not sure Pascal here would approve big contests and free stuff because
he tends to go on an Alexa rank, and your site has no data.

Perhaps a good thread for the message board would be to have people look
around the Lik-Sang website, and see if they would be interested in buying
anything? Just to get a good idea of a sample group of your readers. What do
you think?

Thanks again for emailing though, and when ever you have any questions at
all, please feel free to send em over.

Graham “Tails” Parker :slight_smile:

p.s Oh, hehe, someone in the board remembers Sega 2000… sweet![/quote]

So, basically I think what he’s saying is that the site would have just small text ads and a search box, but when big Sega games were released there’d be banner ads placed on the site to promote them. The site gets 8% of any order that is purchased when someone buys something and is redirected from TWotA.

Just to give you an idea what it might look like, I’ve created this mock version of the front page:

So, the question is, are we going to except this offer or not? If we did then the money could be used for competitions, or put it towards something else for the site/community. If we don’t, then the site keeps its ‘purity’ of having no ads and remains uncommericalised. I’d like to hear some more opinions before making any kind of decision, even if it’s just a simple Yes/No/Don’t care either way.

If everyone who reads this thread could at least reply with something it would really help me decide, because to be honest I can’t make up my mind either way, and it?ll be the people who visit the site who it affects that most.

Hmm, well the search box seems kinda silly, but it is pretty out of the way and doesn’t really affect the look of the site. But where would the “we’re sponsered by Lik-sang” text usually be? As long as it’s not ALWAYS at the top of the page I wouldn’t mind it, but it would get kinda annoying if the block on the top is taken up by Lik-sang every time we visit the page. Still, doesn’t really make a big difference to me either way, though it would be nice if we knew exactly how much we would get back from this deal. Oh well, I guess if worst comes to worst you could always cancel the sponsorship if things don’t go well, right?

Doesn’t look so bad to me, you could refine the placement a little more though. But yeah just a mock up.
I don’t mind the search box, How big would the banners be?

Solis, Solo already mentioned how much he would get from this, just a deal of like 8% of the price of items bought by people who were redirected there from TWOTA.

For the record I don’t buy things online…

Hmm… the search-ad does look slightly annoying, but it isn’t too intrusive; I wouldn’t think it’d actually put anyone off visiting the site, as most people expect large-ish fansites to have this kind of thing. At the moment I wouldn’t mind if the site adopted small ads or continuing not having them, but then again ads rarely bother me…

I hate the mock up page, heh. I don’t like the idea of banner ads for big Sega games. I don’t like the idea of banner ads at all.

Well, I was wondering more about the specific doller amount that we would probably get. 8% of the cost doesn’t matter much if %0 of the people who go to this site actually buy something though the link :stuck_out_tongue:

Hmm… Not as garish as it probably could get, but annoying, yes.

For one thing, ‘Sponsering’ could at least be spelled right. :stuck_out_tongue:

Umm… like Solis pointed out, I’m not sure if this will actually bring about any benefits…

Well you can’t expect them to already know how many people are going to buy stuff… Your guess is as good as theirs…

My self, I wasn’t too bothered by the search box, even though it does look silly…
I have never gone on before…ever O.O

Usually people go straight to Amazon/Ebay to look for things and get so frustrated by the time they can’t find it that they give up =P well thats my case anyway!

Bah, hate banners and from listening to whats been said so far, I’d go with No…

Has anyone bought anything from there before?

I got my import copy of Ikaruga from Lik-Sang a few years ago. I seem to remember getting it pretty quickly, so they’re reliable if that’s what you were wondering.

The general opinion that I’ve gathered from this topic is that there isn’t really a need for the site to contain ads, and so therefore there’s not a lot of point starting them now. Are there any other thoughts on the subject?

Not from me. Sounds like a good decision.

It’s “Sponsoring” but never mind.

Personally, I don’t think TWOTA needs it.