Roll Out the Carpet!
Back at the beginning of the year I mentioned that I had plans to create a new theme for the site. Que several delays due to other priorities, I finally got myself to sit down and work, checking the old design and various other WordPress themes for reference and inspiration. I now present the new redesign! While the colour scheme and basis remains intact, the focus here was to streamline the design and layout to be more tighter and tidier, easy on the eyes and removing unwanted fluff. Other updates were internal to make my work easier and to present relevant information on the site more clearly, along with other plans I will be working on in the following weeks. Below is a list of changes and plans, regardless of their scale.
Changes to Tags: Introducing Map Themes
One thing about tags have always bothered me concerning the method I had to use to provide tags to map themes specific to each game. Setting a single tag for a theme, such as ‘industrial’ for Duke3D, would not only display every post containing this tag from the Duke3D category but also others from Doom, Quake and so forth. To get around this problem I had to add prefixes relating the game itself for each tag. Despite working as intended, it always appeared tacky in my honest opinion.
For this new theme I created a custom taxonomy with it’s own hierarchy specific to themes which has allowed me to bypass the earlier mentioned problems and provide much cleaner way to display this information. I have also left tags intact to make use of other details such as author names, contests and awards, etc. I’ve moved this meta information to the bottom of reviews to separate it from the post meta. These are both visible in category listings.
Author Names and Release Dates in Category listings
The category listings for each page have a space below the title for author name and release dates, something I thought might be useful while browsing. Authors can still be found in the tag list to locate other works reviewed here. There may be further updates to this in future.
Category specific RSS Feed
Another minor addition useful for those who only wish to subsribe to posts from certain categories if they’re only interested in, for example, Quake reviews. The link to this can be found in the upper-right corner of the category pages.
News Archive Ordered by Date
Since I may be using the news section of the site more often with planned features, I needed the news archive to list posts properly with the newest displayed first.
Archive: This page lists all the reviews made in each year along with an overall count.
Guestbook: Feel free to use this area to post a general comment about the site, ask a question or report any problems.
The Return of ‘The Spotlight’
Focusing on a new goal, I wish to use this section to highlight projects and releases I will not be playing or reviewing for certain reasons and feel should be mentioned. This can happen at times when a particular release is clearly high quality, but due to personal preferences I cannot enjoy it and therefore won’t get around to reviewing. Another scenario are projects for games which I do not own or do not plan to purchase. The Spotlight can also be a hub for other types of articles I may wish to write up.
Guides & How To’s
There are times when installing releases for certain games isn’t very clear; a game offers an overwhelming choice of source ports; and not knowing where to begin with recommended fan patches and tools; How do you play singleplayer releases in Unreal Tournament? How do you play Thief Fan Missions? What is this ‘New Dark’ the Thief community have been raving about recently?
The section should hopefully provide answers to those questions. However I will not be writing a guide for everything out there and please don’t expect me to answer technical problems; request help for those at the relevant community forums out there. New updates to this section will be announced on the front page.
Keep in Mind
As of writing, the content of the new features are not yet implemented and other changes or plans may worked on during the following weeks. Please bear with me while I make these transitions.