Site Name: Neostars Magazine
Site Owner: Madame
Review Type: Cow ( In-Depth )
First Impression (20/20)
Upon first entering your site, the first thing I noticed was your layout. It gave off a very positive feeling, because even though it has a darker color scheme, the banner on top is very bright and makes it seem very welcoming.
Your site looks very organized, and I don't see anything that looks wrong or out of place.
Right away, I already know I want to stay at your site and look around more!
I really enjoyed reading your introduction, though I thought the line
A crowd of Neopians formed a straight line in front of a small building, you joined them.
sounded a bit strange. The last part just seemed like it was thrown in without thinking it out completely. Instead of typing it like that, you could flip it so it's written like this,
You joined a crowd of Neopians that were forming a straight line in front of a small building.
Or you could always just use some more descriptive words before you joined them. so it doesn't seem so random.
Another line I thought sounded a little awkward was:
Through the huge windows you could see busy neopets writing and sketching something in their fat, big notebooks.
In my opinion, it just doesn't flow like it should. Instead of saying fat, big notebooks, try saying:
Through the huge windows you could see busy neopets writing and sketching in their overflowing notebooks.
Through the huge windows you could see busy neopets writing and sketching in their large notebooks., just something that flows a little better.
I also noticed an issue at the end of your introduction, which was that you forgot the word the before job positions' page! it's just a small error, but it will make a big difference.
Because it is on your first page, I am going to go ahead and include the subscription section in this part of the review.
The only thing I noticed wrong in that area was the Submit your form! graphic is quite dull and fades a bit into the white background of the text box. Instead of using that particular image, you could use this one:
It is a little bigger, but I think it will still fit and not take up too much space, and it is a bit darker so it will most likely look better.
The layout you're using looks really great, but one thing I noticed that you may want to fix is the background for the Poll of the Week image. The bottom of it is a different shade of black from the rest of the navigation background, so it looks like it is just overlapping it, and it looks a bit awkward. It would most likely be an easy fix, you could keep the same text style and such, just make it a gradient background with the black on the bottom going up, so it blends better.
Overall, the layout looks great! It works really well with your site, as the content box isn't too small, and I love the navigation style that is being used, and as I said in the first section, your layout does give off a very positive feeling! The banner balances out the darker colors perfectly, and the background also looks very nice, as it compliments the main image and isn't too dark, it gives the layout a bit of an elegant look without overpowering anything. The layout is definitely high-quality and makes your site very welcoming!
For this section, I'm going to go ahead and go over pretty much everything in your site. The only things I will leave out are the Rules & FAQ, Sitely, and Credits pages.
The cover is very nice, but there are a few things I would change. I don't know if the black text in the bottom right corner is credit or not, but it just looks very awkward and the black makes it stand out too much. You can't read it that well, and if it is credit, I would suggest using the font 04b03 and maybe lowering the opacity on it, or just using a color that blends better so it isn't sticking out so much.
The other thing I noticed that you may want to fix is the images on the actual cover, if you look closely you can see little white pixels surrounding the border, and I know it is quite hard to crop an image without it having a few white pixels, but sometimes what I like to do is just add a 1PX white border around it, or I just zoom in more and get rid of as many white pixels as I can. The quill and the pens look pretty okay, but the wishing well has a lot of white pixels on the bottom and on the inside of it where the coins are.
Other than those minor problems, the cover looks very nice!
Pages 1 - 5
Page 01, Top Ten Summer Avatars, is a very nice article! It was very pleasant to read and really did put me in a summer mood, but I noticed at the end of the info on each avatar there weren't many tips on how to get it. For the Neopet or Petpet ones, it might be better to provide a few links to different neopets rather than just one, especially on aged Petpets or Neopets, you never know what could go wrong with the pet! For the item required ones, it might also be better to provide a few items and their names, rather than just saying to search it up, or giving one item. I'd suggest telling the writer to include more links and Neopets or items next time.
Page 02, The Vacation Of Doom Poem. I honestly didn't understand the poem that much. I had no clue where the vacation was until the very end, and a lot of it was random. I understand making it rhyme is probably pretty hard, but the poem just made me confused. I had to read it over quite a few times, and I still never fully understood it. There's not much I can say to provide help, just maybe make sure the poem makes a bit more sense next time.
Page 03, August's Last Art, I really enjoyed the picture, and I honestly see nothing wrong with this page.The only thing that I might change is the title, it confused me a bit, but it's nothing majorly important. I just didn't quite get the Last part, so perhaps explaining that might help, or just simply titling it Art Work for August might sound a little better.
Page 04, Neopian Location Quiz, was an interesting page. The quiz was alright, but in my opinion it wasn't the best. I would suggest adding a little info on each page at the top, just to explain the page a little more in-depth. I understand the quiz was for locations in Neopia, but what about the locations. Is it for the readers perfect location, or just random locations in Neopia?
Another thing I would change about the quiz is perhaps making the answers a little better. Some of the answers seem very childish, adding multiple exclamation marks isn't really needed. And some answers don't have punctuation at all, it isn't very consistent with the marks at the endings of answers. Some have periods, others have multiple exclamation marks, and some just have no punctuation at all. I saw that the quiz was edited before posting, so you may want to tell the editor to look a little closer and edit it a little better. Though, I would suggest using no punctuation for the answers at all, or just using periods for them all.
Page 05, Bad Attitude Comic, was a very nice page! I loved the comic, it was so cute! It was very fun to read, and the ending was definitely funny. The only thing I saw that was wrong was a few spelling or grammar areas, but I'll get more into that when I get to the spelling and grammar section. Other than those little problems, the comic was great!
Pages 6 - 10
Page 06, My Amazing Transformation, was a very interesting story! I really enjoyed reading it, I was interested in it from the beginning! I loved reading all about how a Neopet from the pound found a wonderful home. The only errors I saw were a few areas were a bit repetitive with words, but it's nothing too major that makes the story sound bad. I would recommend putting more stories like that in the magazine, like I said, I really enjoyed reading it!
Page 07, Island Summer NC & NP Outfits, was a very lovely page! It is helpful for those possibly looking for inspiration for summer outfits, and their costs! I know I'm always looking for outfits for my own Neopets.
The only thing I would really suggest changing is the fonts used for for actual items. Both fonts were pixel fonts, and it showed. They looked a bit blurry, so for next time perhaps using a different font might help, or finding a better size for the fonts could also help.
Page 08, My Time at the Cockroach Towers. The story was very interesting, I think it really does explain how Cockroach Towers would be if it was a real place. Definitely makes me re-think ever sending my pets there, even if it is cheap!
The only errors I found were similar to the last story, just some repetitive words, but nothing too major. Another error I did find, though, was all the titles were bolded except the last Flashback! title. That can easily be fixed, of course.
Page 09, Happy August Banner. The page held a very nice and high-quality banner! I love the banner, the only thing I would change about it is perhaps making the text stand out a little more.
Due to the banner being re-sized on the site, it's kind of small and hard to see the full size, unless you copy the image URL which not all people know how to do. I suggest taking off the link from the banner itself, so you can drag
and drop it, because you already credited the banner in the opening paragraph, so there's no need for a link to Legend on the banner.
Page 10, Wishing Well Poem, was a very nice poem. I thought it was interesting, though not all of it made sense in my opinion, but it's nothing too major. I know it's hard to write a poem, considering I can't write a poem at all, so good job to whoever wrote it! Very nice poem for the Wishing Well.
Pages 11 - 15
Page 11, Summer Fonts. The fonts were very nice! I'd use them if I was in need of a good summer font. One thing I didn't really like about the font was the random Neopet icons on some of the fonts, I don't really think they're needed. But other than that, the fonts were great!
Page 12, Why Stick With Normal?, was a great page! The sites you picked were very interesting, and certainly had a very unique idea. The page was very helpful, and I'll definitely be checking out those sites more often. I only found a few spelling errors, but I'll go over those later. Overall, the page was very nice to read!
Page 13, Interview with Nicole from Seraphic. The interview was really great, you asked some awesome questions and the answers Nicole gave were great! One thing I suggest you change if you do another interview is you don't use ?! so much when you ask questions. It seems more like you're yelling, or demanding an answer, and nobody wants to feel like they're being yelled at.
I really think you should continue interviewing other site owners like that, the interview was really great, I really enjoyed reading it!
Page 14, Coltzan's Shrine Poem, was an amazing poem! I really enjoyed it, it was very well put together and truly explained the shrine. One thing I'd suggest adding is perhaps a picture of the shrine at the top, just so it isn't all text. But overall, the poem was great!
Page 15, Editorial. I really enjoy how you let someone else ask a question and you answer, but in my opinion your answer was very poor. Some of the grammar isn't that great, such as you should've added The in front of some words. Also, the last two links lead to an icon, not a game. So you should change those links.
The Magazine Overall
Overall, the magazine was great! I think it's also a really nice idea to do a magazine on Neopets. I enjoyed reading all the pages and looking at the pictures, though I think it would definitely benefit the magazine if you took in some of my suggestions.
I think it's really nice how you have a page about all the staff of Neostars Magazine, it's nice to see some info behind the writers or artists.
I did notice a few minor errors, such as their being some random blank space after some words in the users Biz_Dude, Polka_Dot_Socks_, and Loveisintheair_His info.
Also, to keep the page a little bit cleaner, I would suggest adding some padding after the fake avatars before the text. I use the code all the time, and I always think it helps a lot. Just add this code in and replace the image code with the different ones you need. And of course, feel free to change the pixels for the padding, the amount is totally up to you!
Reading over the details for the different jobs, I noticed one thing that sounded a bit wrong with the guidelines for the Fashion Stylist Position. In your guidelines you say that the NC amount cannot be over 300, but your second example is 650 NC, and I'm pretty sure the others in the actual magazine were over 300 NC as well. That might be something you want to fix, or enforce a little better.
Other than that problem, I see nothing wrong.
I really like that you accept questions from other Neopians, though one thing I'd suggest you add is maybe a bit more detail on the Editorial, such as, how often do you update? Who exactly answers the questions? I was a bit confused with the answers, I had no clue who exactly was answering the questions, I thought it was you at first until I got to the second questions answer. I would definitely recommend adding who answered the questions.
Your awards page is really nice, though I would recommend adding who exactly made each icon specifically.
I would also suggest removing the last two awards ( the ones for the 'other' section. ) The first one should really have Neostars completely typed out, and the last one is a bit too bright in my opinion, and the font on the bottom ( 04b03 ) should be in all caps, so it looks better.
I'm obviously not going to look over every single magazine issue you've had in the past, and the other sections aren't really anything that is that important, so the only area here I'll be looking over is the Status HQ.
I really love how you list all sites on this page, not just strictly recommended ones, it really gives all sites a chance to get more requests! I really wouldn't change anything about the page, I only found a spelling error, but I'll get more into that in the appropriate section.
The only thing I would suggest is adding open and closed review requests, because reviews are just as important as graphics, in my opinion.
Overall, the content is great! There weren't that many errors, and I really enjoyed reading the magazine. I honestly think if you just use some of my suggestions, it will help.
First of all, I'll go through your link back buttons!
I would recommend removing these buttons: The second button, the third button, the sixth button, the twelfth button, and the eighteenth button.
The second buttons animation is a bit awkward, it just fades out barely and appears again, and it's a bit too fast in my opinion.
The third buttons base is a bit too bright, and the colors don't go together that well. Pink and a dark green don't really fit, and the font looks a bit weird.
The sixth buttons animation is a bit fast, there's no breathing room in between the animations ending and beginning, and I just feel like the blurred border for the text makes it look a bit weird.
The twelfth buttons image is mainly blue, I can't even tell what the image was in the first place. I also don't like how the text was set up, I'm not a big fan of the cursive font like that, and I feel the text doesn't stand out as much as it should.
The eighteenth buttons fonts should be in all caps. The font 04b03 should always be in caps, in my opinion. It just looks better and cleaner, and it especially looks pretty weird if its a capital letter followed by lowercase letters. ( Believe me, I learned this lesson the hard way! )
I think you should move your Neomail Madame to become affiliates... text to the actual affiliates spot, along with how many spots are open and such. It keeps it a bit cleaner, and lets people know if requests to be affiliates are open or not, because not everyone will know to look at the top of the page for this information.
I'm also going to do an affiliate sweep.
Fire & Ices link goes to a random premade template with no info on it. Penwicks link goes to a default petpage. Sample Reviews goes to an about me page.
Love, Alice is inactive.
Imprinted doesn't have you listed as an affiliate.
I'm going to go ahead and do a link sweep for your Listed At section.
Plethora has move to here.
Wicked Directorys link goes to a default petpage. Speak Now's link goes to a petpage with pictures.
Other than those problems, your sitely section is very organized and looks great!
Grammar & Spelling (8/10)
I'm not going to go through your whole site for spelling and grammar errors, so if you'd like a full check please request the proper rubric for that!
The errors I did notice were:
If you hover over a button you'll see what the site offers and weather it is recommended.
It should say:
If you hover over a button you'll see what the site offers and whether it is recommended.
Yes but only if the jobs are in different categories and you no more than two.
It should say:
Yes but only if the jobs are in different categories and you have no more than two.
Follow all TNT rules! No exceptions, you put at risk yourself and the site if you break the rules.
It should say:
Follow all of TNT's rules! No exceptions. You put both yourself and the site at risk if you break the rules.
The artist wrote:
Why did you two always disturb me and treat me like a baby???!!
It should say:
Why do you two always disturb me and treat me like a baby?!
Overall the site has some unique features and a great overall idea, so if you ever need you neopets customized, this is a place to visit!
It should say:
Overall the site has some unique features and a great idea, so if you ever need your neopets customized, this is the place to visit!
I found other errors here and there, but they were mostly in what other users said, and you obviously can't exactly edit what someone else said. You may just want to ask your editors to look over the work a bit more, just to be extra careful and find errors quicker.
Overall, your site was amazing! I really enjoyed reviewing it, and you don't have that many errors. I will definitely be checking up for the magazine more often, great job! I just recommend taking in my suggestions, I think they'll help a lot.
I would definitely recommend your site! I know I will be revisiting and checking on it more often for new things. I think you and all of your staff have done a great job with the site!
Total Score & Title
84.5/100 - Hero ( Due to the .5, I am bumping up the title to go ahead and go
with the 85 - 89 )
Feel free to use this button! It has your score on it.