RFC: featured, showcase, wip

Few (or many, who knows…) of you were not too happy with the new default thread ordering in the Featured and Showcase boards. While I’m not usually elated by criticism, I have to confess that as part of being the admin of an enlightened community, I’m radically socializing to near acceptable levels. Therefore, and only because of the aforementioned reason, I’d like do two things: first, I’d like to explain the reasoning behind the current approach, then I’d share my deepest emotional struggles regarding this approach, only to make a proposal to make amends with the nay-sayers, of which I ultimately seek approval in the general sense.

Reasoning behind current approach

  • ?

How the current approach works

  • Threads are ordered by post date (or msg-id, if you want to know, badly)
  • Some Showcase game promoted to Featured, might (therefore) not be bumped to first position on the new board

Flaws of current approach

  • A WIP reaching the published state, has no chance to get exposure from non-members (in laymans terms: you’re screwed)
  • The published game moved to the Featured board, will equally be ‘inserted’ by post-date of the original WIP thread

[quote]We have to change things!

  • We create a new sub-forum: Work in Progress
  • All WIP threads will be moved to this new sub-forum
  • The Showcase board will be solely for finished games (the release rate is high enough, for this to be a requirement)
  • gasp
  • The WIP board will be sorted by last-post-date (by default)
  • The Showcase board will remain to be sorted by first-post-date (by default)
  • The Featured board will remain to be sorted by first-post-date (by default)
  • Everybody can post in WIP
  • Everybody can post in Showcase (mods can move it back to WIP when quality is obviously lacking in some way)
  • Transfering from WIP -> Showcase requires a mod (which will create a new topic, and merge it with the old topic)
  • Transfering from Showcase -> Featured requires a mod (which will create a new topic, yada yada)
  • A game can only occur once in these three boards (other topics will be merged by mods if required)

Some nay-sayers might rightfully ask why we’re bothering with non-default post-ordering anyway. To these non-believers I say that currently these boards are there for the casual visitors, the player if you like. They should be offered a view on what’s new in java gaming, not what happened to be the last game that had a bug report or worse, a bump. Each new game deserves its exposure to the outside world, and order-by-first-post is simply the easiest way to achieve that goal.

I’m open to feedback, even for alternatives, but not quite for proposals from females (that’s a man’s burden).

Are you saying you’re not a man, then? :o

Let me know how many PM’s you get from this ^^

On a serious note, good job! I like it. Your proposal makes sense, and I accept it :stuck_out_tongue:

So we’re going to have new level for game posted here. Not bad.

So the idea is a popular game will always have visitors because of its quality without helped by first order, giving newcomer the top spot. Not bad. If we have rating system, adopting LD Default show page is good too.

Porposal approved.

It’s nice but will threads moved from the current showcase to this board see their visit counters be reset?

Woah… I can feel what gouessej feels :smiley: (5 years right? :wink: )

And: All the current Showcase Threads being WIP threads will be moved to WIP? Hard work, but I’d like that!

I approve.

However I would suggest something additional, and that would be a “request to ascend” if you will.
This is for getting your WIP to Showcase or your Showcase game to featured.
Because right now it would be at the mercy of the mods - whoever thinks about it, and also, the developer should decide if he even wants to.
There is a danger of spamming these requests, so maybe some time limitation. And I guess official guidelines/requirements needed to ascend - which I know, would be really vague and depending on the game.

tl;dr: streamline ascending process

Right ;D

I understand :stuck_out_tongue:

EDIT: I think I just got somehow off-the-road ;D

I think the suggested changes are sound. WIP makes sense to rank via most recent post, especially if one is soliciting advice. And “Featured” makes good sense to be ordered by first posting, or by promotion date.

I’m wondering, is it possible (and practical) to put a sort option on “views” or on “replies”? That might allow one to find the “most popular”–not that this metric is an ideal representation.

Having a sort option would be nice. Even better would to be to have two different links for each sort method. I don’t know what type of forum software you’re using but it would be really cool if you could put a link next to the header or in the same place as the “child boards” links show up. The child board could redirect to the original with a sort parameter in the URL.

You could make the small link say “Newest posts”. Or if that were the default, then “Newest games” or “Newest topics”.

I forgot that some boards let you embed html/bb code in forum descriptions. If that’s the case, then just adding an Order by newest posts link to the end would work. If not, the child board thing would eliminate the need to dive into php parser/template code. Just create an empty read-only sub forum and create a redirect from /boards/showcase-discuss/123/view.html to /boards/showcase/2/view/sort,last_post.html. Neither would require any coding, neither would require extra moderating, and would satisfy the complainers.

That said, I think a WIP showcase might be interesting. I wouldn’t feel showing off screenshots of unfinished or unreleased games if that were the case. On the other hand, I think a new WIP section is a non solution to the topic order problem and should be considered separately.

You would not, but think og TigSource where the games of tomorrorw do exactly that (Which is a good way to get people to love your game, see Secrets of Grindea). On TigSource finished games have there own sub-forum. If a game is in development it’s in WIP and when it’s done it will be moved to the new forum (but also attached as sticky for a week or so in WIP).

You can sort by newest post, but clicking the header link at the top. “Last Post”.

I’ll throw my name on the pile in support of a separate WIP board. I have something I am working on that I felt was a little too rough to be part of Showcase (Even though it says it’s for WIPs). I also think the sort orders Riven proposes works fine.

“You can sort by…clicking the header link at the top.”


How embarrassing.

I never even thought to try it.

I added some UI for moderators to swiftly move threads among the 3 boards.

The migration of topics might take a few days. Currently I move topics from Showcase to WIP if there is a TODO list, it states it is an alpha/beta/wip, or it lacks a screenshot (or it disappeared).

Please feel free to suggest migrations of (your own) topics.

Ah, that explains the MASSIVE number of “unread replies” I just received XD


I just noticed that now the column on the right of the forum ( “Work in progress” ) is not sorted the same way as the WIP board. In fact it is sorted the same way as before the change for WIP/showcase.

Not sure if it’s on purpose or not … :slight_smile:

And by the way I like a lot the new organisation in two separate boards + the sorting of the WIP board :wink:


It was not on purpose, but it’s what I would have done anyway. :slight_smile: