Hey sorry if you guys have already discussed this sort of thing...
I think about how the forum that would personally interest me would be discussion about straight up game development and design. It doesn't matter what programming language or platform, game design is game design. The closest thing to it is conversations that take place here in the Flash Reg Lounge.
So it makes me wonder, what if we closed down the Mobile forum (because it's a flop), changed the entire "Developers & Programmers" category into just "Programming", then added a "Game Design" or "Game Development" forum under "Artists & Creators", officially representing game makers among the Animation, Art and Music categories we have now.
If we did this, I feel like I would need to walk the walk and put myself out there on the forum more. I would try posting about failed projects, including playable demos. I would post about games in-progress, which is something that always makes me nervous because I've become ultra paranoid and protective over the years when it comes to stuff I'm doing. I really need to get over that and just start talking again.
We could also have AMAs with developers. I (hopefully we) would want to make an effort to pull in guys from the scene and get them to have AMAs, post-mortems, etc...
I was always excited to have post-mortems on NG, as a category in the Writing Portal. The thought was, you could append it to your game project - so when you play the game it links to the article with the post-mortem, and if you read the post-mortem is has a link to the game, all cross-connected between portals.
Some guys like I-Smel and Hyptosis have made posts like these on their user blogs. They are always my favorite thing to read in the Artist News section, I would love to see more posts like that. So that begs the question, is it better to do it on user pages where it gets all fragmented, or would it be best in a centralized forum where everyone shares the same interests? It could be a mix of both, like making a big post in the forum, then using the front page Artist News to give the public a brief synopsis and link to your post - thus promoting the forum and bringing in more activity to the benefit for everyone who hangs out there.
The forum would only succeed if a good number of interesting game developers actually like hanging out there and talking. Do you guys think it has potential?