I never wanted to "compete" with Miniature Trading. However, given the potential demise
of the site, I feel I have no choice. Any fan of Pirates CSG is very welcome to join my fansite via the Register
button in the top left corner of the page. (using your MT username or similar community username would be great if you'd like, to help with familiarity)
The Forum at Pirates with Ben
Over the past week I have made a bunch of improvements
to the speed of my site. This is something I plan to continue working on. However, at this point both the homepage and the main forum page have been optimized to a decent degree to the point where I feel comfortable sharing this new forum (created in August) with the community. I am also about to starting sending private messages to the Pirates CSG fans at MT, to ensure that as many people as possible know about the new forum.
I am publishing a bunch of essential threads at the PwB forum and will continue to do so. I also have a LOT of topic ideas I've been saving up for months now, so over time I think that will help to make PwB fresh and potentially even reinvigorate the community (hopefully - I can't be the only one posting there!). I am using bbpress and Buddypress Wordpress plugins to make it a community site, and there are plenty of cool features you would expect from such a system, including: private messages, public profile messages, avatars and profile background pictures, favorites, groups, and undoubtedly more (even I haven't finished exploring the options!). A handful of fans have already signed up, including Xerecs and the legendary Woelf.
I would love to implement a trading system with haves and wants along with a searchable database similar to the one MT has, but those are large long term projects and I cannot guarantee their success or implementation.
I will continue optimizing the site and my goal is for Pirates with Ben to be the #1 internet destination for fans of Pirates CSG. It is about time that the forums for the game were owned and operated by the community itself - or at the very least, its most passionate member. Thank you and I hope to see you at Pirates with Ben!
Here is a picture showing the forum's page speed. The same page also just scored a 100 on Google's PageSpeed Insights.