Stonegate, having started a collection of transformation and anthropomorphic content from various source, such as TV show, movies, comic books, etc, decide to start a website. The website was originally intended to be a place where he could sort his collection.
Furvect, a website already hosting some transformation and anthropomorphic contents, accept to give Stonegate some space to host his website.
A limited number of clips are then put on line. A choice of 9-10 clips were offered and a weekly pool would determine which AVI would be uploaded.
Dragoniade, who's been a fan of transformation and anthropomorphic for a long time, decide he needed to be more than just a lurker and to contribute. Seeing that some Transformation content were aired on his local TV stations but weren't on Stonegate's site, he decided to contribute that way. He ordered his first video capture card, a Matrox Rainbow Runner. His first show he captured were Archie's Weird Mysteries, Cybersix and Kong the Animated Series, aired back then in Télétoon (the French broadcast).
Dragoniade's first intention was to provide new clips to Stonegate as an anonymous source, since the site was Stonegate's creation and access were restricted.
Dragoniade's first clips informations are put on line by Stonegate. Those were Archies Weird Mysteries and Cybersix, the latest known for one of the best animated Werewolf transformations. Seeing the site growing, Stonegate asks for Dragoniade help in both making AVI, updating web page and making thumbnails.
Dragoniade is officially part of the Shadowlord Crew. An announcement is made and his information are added to the website. Both continues to provide content to the site.
The first rant and warning about annoying and harassing fanboys is posted on the site.
Due to the growing space taken by the clips, a decision to remove all the clips not featuring Transformations, also referred as Scene clips, was taken.
With the poll system being abused and being limited in options, Dragoniade decided to code a new one in PHP. It offered more protection against abuse and was more linked to the site.
With the site growing and growing, update are slowing becoming a burden to perform. For every new clips being put on line or enlisted, more than 5 pages must be modified: the show letter section, the show section, the clip show section, the category listing, the category page, the character page, the characters index. With multiple files update, this can lead to error and take a lot of time. Since his PHP skills were getting better, having worked on the Brutal Beast Studio (and never having been paid as of today for it), Dragoniade decided it was time to work on a newer version of the site, one that would feature a database as a central point of data and adding a clip would require to simply add one entry and everything else would be rendered automatically.
At first, Stonegate was seeing the project very negatively. But after hearing Dragoniade arguments, one being it was getting way too time consuming to update the site and which was jeopardizing his participation to it, and the other being things would be more automatized, Stonegate agreed. As Dragoniade worked on the new version, Stonegate was rather pleased and finally welcomed the change.
After suffering problem with the 3rd party counter, Dragoniade decide to reuse PHP to make a custom counter. This one was dynamic, offering different counter style with each refresh and keeping track of fake hits.
Stonegate, Dragoniade, Bahamut, Solidasp and Havoc attend their first convention together. The choice was Anthrocon in Philadelphia. Stonegate and Dragoniade finally in person.
The site finally reached its allowed hard drive space limit, about 4-5 GB. All the clips were pulled out and a decision to only keep the latest 20 shows was taken.
Updates are totally stalled until the whole site is indexed and added to a database. This include the AVIs of the week and new content. During that period, Stonegate and Dragoniade goes through all the files, all the pictures, all the characters, sorting and adding all the information to a big excel file, that would be later imported in a database.
The new version of the site is put on line. Now Shadowlord and Dragoniade Inc, to reflect my active participation, has reached version 2.0 and run on PHP with a PostgreSQL database. Pages rendering is dynamic, poll are included among the shows themselves (so no more limitations on which show is going to be uploaded), the forum is now part of the site, all characters and categories are automatically linked together, and update are made much simpler.
People welcome the change, as things are a bit more easier to navigate. However, this change didn't bring more disk space and the site is still limited to 4-5 GB of space for both the media (thumbs, images, etc) and the clips. Thus, the limitation to 20 shows is maintained.
Stonegate's computer is infected by a virus. In the process of repairing it, Stonegate accidentally format all partitions, including the clips one. All of his clips are therefor lost. And he had no backup, so all hope were lost.
However, ever since Dragoniade joined the site, he reminded Stonegate over and over to upload his new stuff to his personal FTP. But things never goes as planned and not everything was there, especially the old stuff. And some of those clips, from the time the site started, where scattered among a few hard drive on Dragoniade's end. So Dragoniade started the long process, which would take 2 months, of sorting, cleaning and looking through all of his video file, comparing them to what was listed in the database and identifying which ones were lost and which ones were salvaged.
All the clips information are salvaged and the clips sorted back. In the end, 85% of the clips were recovered. Dragoniade purchases an external hard drive for Stonegate and put all the clips in it. It will be handed to him when both meet in a few months.
Fanboys get more and more aggressive. Some whines regarding the site not having all the content on line. Others complains that the site is not dedicated to certain transformations (inflation, female only, etc) or to their site (The Process). Others wanted all the clips dumped in an FTP, with disregard to all the sorting and categorization. Some wanted all the clips uploaded on the new You Tube site. In the end, all the fanboys cared about was the clips and not the people behind the site. After spending the last 2 months salvaging those clips, this sort of really annoyed Dragoniade. And when the site reached the 2 millions visitors mark, no feedback at all from the fans.
To compensate for the limited space allowed to clips, Dragoniade start a new feature: previews. Smaller, low quality video would be uploaded to the site to help people choose what to vote.
The fanboys harassment finally reach a point of no return. The last drop came when some of the fanboys compared the site work to Arania's work, stating the site should be like her work. Those unaware of that person, Arania was a so called artist who's "artworks" strictly consist of badly drawn transporn, completely ignoring proportion or anatomy, but focusing on lengthy, but awful, sequences. Remember the movie Austin Power (or was it Naked Gun), where one of the character would have a mole in a different place between scene? Well, her artworks are the same, except with every body parts.
In other word, the fanboys really didn't care about Dragoniade or Stonegate. All they wanted, are lots of clips, no quality, no sorting, no database, no support. Just a shitload of clips without effort, defecated on them. Like Arania's work. This was the even that let Dragoniade give an ultimatum: people were to show some appreciation or the site would close and the deadline would be Dragoniade's approaching birthday on November 12th.
The ultimatum has been reached. The fanboys called it a bluff, just another drama. But, it wasn't drama, as drama end up forgotten and nothing end up moving. Dragoniade announced that all the clips were pulled again, all update suspended and a donation button added. The announcement was made that until there is enough money to pay for the co-location of a server, no new work would be performed on the site. If the fanboys wanted everything on line, they would have to pay for it, since Furvect current server, Aquila, was unable to support more. And when the site would return, it would be in a new format.
Dragoniade heads to California to attends Further Confusion with Stonegate. The external hard drive with the clips backup is handed to him. Discussion about the new site layout is discussed. Dragoniade decide to drop PHP in favor to Java, since this is the language he's been using at work. This would also help speed some functionality people have been asking for, such as quick sort per genders, categories, characters, etc.
Donations slowly arrives and more work get done on the site. With Dragoniade now having a full time job, new responsibility and Stonegate not knowing any programming languages, the site new format is taking a long time. While Dragoniade try to post progress at various locations, such as on the site's forum, his Deviantart journal, the live journal and the Metamorphorum, some fanboys took the delay in order to continue attacking the site.
Some of fanboys/fetishist defenders started to post libels regarding Dragoniade: Dragoniade has been using the money to buy drugs; Dragoniade is a selfish person who don't want to share any of his clips; Dragoniade is gay because he like male transformations and hate female transformations (totally false); Dragoniade has been lying by choosing to stay on Furvect (false, we moved from Aquila to Accipiter); Dragoniade has been sock puppetting in order to get more support for the site. And so on.
Progress and updates are regularly posted on various site, such as the Shadowlord forum, Dragoniade's Deviant Art page, Dragoniade's LiveJournal, the defunct Metamorphorum. In particular, the Deviant Art updates included screen shots of the progression. Sadly, some people considered those update to be insufficient considering they weren't posted in their sites, and added more flame to the burning fire.
As the site was progressing completion well and approaching beta stage, Dragoniade organized a transformation contest in order to renew with the contest organized in its prime. The results were quite pleasing and some new artists showed up. Dragoniade was very please and thanks everyone who participated.
Dragoniade finally push on line the new version of the site: Shadowlord and Dragoniade V3.0 . Sadly, event in the past years has made Stonegate less and less available to work on the site. Job issues has had Stonegate take various job and cutting his Internet time. The clips are slowly being uploaded back and were separated in 2 sections: the first clips to be uploaded would be the old one from Stonegate. Dragoniade's clips would follow after, since he wanted them to be watermarked and tagged properly. This decision was taken after he saw some of the clips being reposted elsewhere, thanks for the fanboys.
The new site would feature flash preview, a homepage for users, daily download quota, donation membership, a new multi-forum, a rating system, a Web 2.0 comment system, a public art gallery, support for future comics and books materials, better linked integration, favorites for various items (show, characters, clips, etc), and many more features.
Dragoniade decided to organize a second transformation contest, this time, tying it to the site theme considering its reopening. Sadly, maybe as a sign people only joined the first one as to speed up the recovery, not many people participated on this one and the number of entries didn't reached the number of prizes.
After spending some time finishing coding his latest servlet, Dragoniade releases a souvenir from the past: Shadowlord V1.0. Accessible through the legacy address, the original site, as how it was when it was last updated, can be acceded for browsing. All the old stuff is there: comics, figures, arts from some late artists, etc.
Still no news from Stonegate. The last contact has been close to 6 months away. He's still around, as his profile on various art galleries keep being updated. All the site work is now performed exclusively by Dragoniade. New clips and shows are being uploaded, mostly new contents from Dragoniade.
The site is approaching its 10th anniversary. For the occasion, another contest may be organized.
Dragoniade is still looking for support for the site. Donations are always welcome. Also, Dragoniade is crazy about fanart, so any drawings of his character or himself transforming are always welcome.