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September Update
Liam Dawe 1 Oct

Hi everyone, another monthly update for you. This was first shared on Patreon.

Hello Patrons! Liam here with a bit of an early update for you! Thank you for continuing to support GamingOnLinux.

I usually leave it for later but so much has been done lately, it's worth keeping you in the loop as supporters. Here's some of what has been done recently:

Free Games Page

- Added a show/hide link to the genres list, as it was quite long. I've made sure that works for both JavaScript on/off - if you have JS on it's just prettier how it works.

- The actual list is much cleaner, using a re-done HTML/CSS style. Looks good on mobile now too (which is where the majority of our traffic comes from...).

- Please remember to submit your suggestions to the Free Games page! We want to gather a list of all the good Linux stuff out there across every source. There's more to life than Steam! There's a link directly on the page to do so.

GOL App Database

- We're now internally tracking how many hits each page gets per day, reset at midnight. It doesn't count admin/editor hits, so we don't accidentally inflate some when editing them a lot and feature testing.

- Linking with the above, we're now showing "Popular" items from our database based on hits. You can see the new column on the GOL database home. Not a lot of traffic to it right now of course, since we don't even link to the main DB from the main GOL page until it's ready.

- We're now showing the latest entries on the GOL database home.

- Any item list (free games page, viewing them all etc) that doesn't have a small image to show beside the name will now have an actual default, so they all match up in positioning.

- Game pages no longer show "Not Listed" if we don't know their game engine, wasted space to say it and there's plenty that don't have a specific game engine.

Getting closer to actually advertising this big database but more work to come :)

Crowdfunding Page

- Upgraded DataTables JS

- Made it responsive, looks better on smaller screens (finally). It gives you a tiny little + button to tap to expand details on small screens now too.

Article Comments

- As we've grown, so has the community. The amount of discussion that happens in comments is often getting long. To help with this, we've rolled out a "Promoted Comments" feature to bump up especially good, helpful and insightful comments to display at the top. Pretty useful if a developer comes along to explain somethings, tons of ways it can be super helpful.

- Yes, we will add a way to reverse comments eventually for that who want it :), it's on the list!

Just a small part of our work to keep a happy and healthy community. Promoted Comments also have a golden border.

Tech Help / Forum Updates

Need some help? Don't forget the GOL Forum!

To make the Forum even better, we've added a post template to the Tech Help forum. So when you make a post, it reminds you to add in a few essential details. There's also quick Pastebin/GitHub Gist links for pasting log files in and linking.

Linking with that, the Forum has been upgraded to work with 'pretty' URLs. So it's no longer "/forum/1", instead it's now something like "/forum/retro-emulation". It's nicer, clearer and might even help appease the almighty search engines index the forum better.

On top of that, there's a brand new "Answered" feature now online. A forum topic author, or admins, can now click a link to mark a reply as the answer. This will highlight it, note the topic has been answered and add a quick jump link in the main topic post to jump to the answer. Part of our work to help people get the best info possible.

User Profiles

As we grow, add more features and so we thought giving you something extra to claim would be nice. Helps to keep us a little personal. We are, after all, a community, we're more than just a news website.

So you can now have your own personal profile URL, instead of just an ID. Find it on the newer Profile section of the User Control Panel. This is independent of your username on purpose, so that username changes won't break your custom profile URL. Nice.

There may be places we've missed that still use IDs for people with a custom address set, let us know if you spot any in the feedback forum. We're gradually upgrading all profile links to use it.

GOL Code

As a reminder, the GOL site is open source.

- Moved over the login form to its own function, preventing duplicated code left over from years ago everywhere. Nice and tidy now. Great success.

Steam Tracker

- Another month, another data point added to our dedicated Steam Tracker.

- The date picker also no longer goes passed the current date, woops. Can't tell the future, sorry. As much as I would love to tell you how the market share changes...

Steam Play & Wine

- Our dedicated Steam Play page now has an FAQ, and it's split into two columns for better reading on bigger screens. Since the question of anti-cheat comes up pretty much every day, just send people there to follow along so they can stop asking all the damn time.

- The Steam Play / Wine dedicated Forum now has a sticky topic with helpful links.

Yup, we now own that. Get hype. Amusing no one else thought to grab it.

It's parked to our dedicated Steam Play page, but it's also quite a catchy domain. Part of our expansion to help people game on Linux however that is. The main GOL news front page will obviously still absolutely give full priority to those devs who support Linux (in whatever form that takes).

Linking in with that, here's a preview (W.I.P!) of what's to come with our own Proton ratings system. Yup, we're finally doing it! A few people have had access to play with it, and so far the feedback has been very positive. That's demo data currently.

It's being done for many reasons: a personal dislike of ProtonDB, seeing people (some quite prominent / well known people) constantly say how much they dislike ProtonDB, the refusal of the owner of ProtonDB to open it up for others and so on. Just like I did when I originally created and started GOL, I thought I could do better than (and others) - which no longer exist. Maybe I can do better here and provide people a nice alternative. If not, then it was fun to try but based on early feedback it sounds like people will like it.

See you later this month for another update.

Last edited by Liam Dawe on 1 October 2020 at 10:06 am UTC

Gooda 1 Oct

I like the look of the Proton ratings system, seems like an improvement compared to what ProtonDB offers in that regard. It's clear, concise and helpful. Looking at graphs makes it much easier to quickly figure out how well a game runs.

I think it would be a welcome alternative to ProtonDB.

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