Jump to content

Blogs

Featured Entries

  • Mortekai

    We are now ready for 2018, but more is coming.

    By Mortekai

    With the current setup I feel we are more then ready, teachnically, to meet the demands of a great community again in 2018. The basis has been there for many years of course, but with some additions we now have a very capable platform to stand on:   The Forums The forums are state of the art and the best community forum software out there. It has all the features needed to make sure we have an engaging experience. With good membership functions such as user groups, private messages and all the editing tools needed this is a strong foundation to build from. New views can be chosen depending on how you want to see the forums: list view which is the old view, block view give a different approach to that view and then topic view that should you the updated topics based on your selection of forums to keep track of.   Clubs Clubs is a new standard function and it allow for creating your own little space on Shadownessence. Its perfect for creating communities inside communities such as your own gaming club, a RPG chronicle club, an art club or a writing club to mention a few versions. Every club can have their own discussion areas, galleries, download, blogs and calendars of course. Clubs can be open to anyone, private so no one even can find them without invitation or public but you need to be invited.   The Calendar An old feature that is maturing a bit with features such as RSVP so you know who will join or not. You can even set up a RSVP limit if you have an event with limited seats. You can create venues if you have frequent events in the same location, like your gaming HQ. I have added a community calendar for pretty much anything and also a special calendar for events. This allow you to add your events so you may get some attention to your events.   The Gallery A much appreciated function has returned and we now need to rebuild it again. I have reached out to our old patrons and will contact the artists I have on my personal social networks as well. We have a lot of good artists in the community so hopefully some of them will add their creations from Deviant Art and other places. I will contact the V5 art director Mary Lee as well to see if I can lure her in here as well with her great art.   The Downloads It's in a terrible shape, but the function is there. I have contacted @MrGonev5 to ask permission to add his extensive collection of character sheets as we had in the past. I will also see if we can get some permission for the WoD fonts and other things that can be of use for you. Eventually the plan is to create a few skins for these forums as well that can be used for creating your own community. It's work in progress though and it will take a while to beck into shape.   The Classifieds A new section with two purposes: List every single book available to purchase from drivethrurpg.com and to let you sell and buy items you are missing from your collection. I have added sections for some optional categories as well, such as books, magazines, games and of course art for our talented artists. As this is a very new section for Shadownessence we'll see how this will evolve and how we should set it up. Right now it's setup with a $1 fee for each transaction to support the site, but that might very well be removed if we see that it's hurting the users in any way.   The Videos section (with Twitch support) Another rather new feature where I was amazed over how much content there are out there! I found some great video creators, and not just the official ones, and I think this can be a fun feature to have. It's fast and easy to add new videos and for those that are active on Twitch we have support for live streaming as well. As the new video games come out I am sure we will see new streamers and with this we have a good place to showcase them.   The blogs The blogs allow anyone to write, not just management. You can create group blogs, which is great for news and articles that you share with others. You can create your own blog for any number of reasons, like expressing your opinions on the upcoming V5 material, report on events or why not make it a character diary of sorts? In the World of darkness news blog I am using the RSS import feature to grab the latest news from WhiteWolf and Onyx Path so you always get the latest news with links t he original article.   The Raffles and Give Aways If you remember a long time ago, we had Raffles to support the site and we got so much support from the WhiteWolf authors that donated books and other items. This funtionality is now back and it's open to anyone if you want to host a raffle or give away. I am looking into the best ways to use this to give away some books and other items together with for example drivethrurpg.com and WhiteWolf themselves. I think this can be something fun and hopefully we can get some traction on the old "Month of the" feature that we had a long time ago where we featured a certain system for a month.   Discord (widget) Chat has always been a big deal as Shadownessence was created out of the old Dark City RPG chat created almost 20 years ago now. We have a Discord server setup thanks to @Amaranth and you can see a Discord Widget on the forum start page.  I have added the user groups there so you should have the same user group there as on the forums. For now we are just having a good time chatting in the void, but we will for sure have game related sections soon and I also hear some whispers that we might have some IC RPG chat happening in the future....     That is just the beginning.... Visually these forums are using a purchased theme and as time permit I will look into making a custom skin for it. For now I will simply adjust the things that is already here and then time will tell when a new layout will be possible.   In the coming weeks we will get several new features in the 4.3 update from invision Community. These are coming with regular intervals as they have done for the past 15 years or so, but expect the blogs to have a much needed visual update and that the clubs functions can be seen in the forums and so on after that update.   Content Discovery We now support Elasticsearch which is a search utility that allows for much faster and more reliable searching. The REST API now supports search functions. Both MySQL and Elasticsearch have new settings for the admin to use to set search-defaults and default content weighting to better customize search logic to your community. Visitors can now search for Content Pages and Commerce Products. When entering a search term, members now see a more clear interface so they know what areas they are searching in and the method of search. Member Engagement Commerce can now send a customizable account welcome email after checkout. You can whitelist emails in the spam service to stop false-positives. REST API has many enhancements to mange members. Ability to join any OAuth service for login management. Invision Community can now be an OAuth endpoint. Wordpress OAuth login method built in. Support for Google's Invisible ReCaptcha. Groups can be excluded from Leaderboard (such as admins or bot groups). All emails generated by Invision Community can now contain admin-defined extra promotional text in the footer such as recent topics, Our Picks, and more. Admins can now define the order of Complete Your Profile to better control user experience. Clubs Option to make a Club visible but invite-only Admins can set an option so any Club a member is part of will also show in the parent application. So if you are in a Club that has a Gallery tab then those image will show both in the Club and in the main Gallery section of the community. Club members can now follow an entire Club rather than just each content section. There is a new option on the Club directory page for a list view which is useful for communities with many Clubs. If you have Commerce you can now enable paid memberships to Clubs. Admins can set limits on number of Clubs per group. If a group has delete permission in their Club, they can now delete empty containers as well. Members can ignore invitations. Moderation and Administration Unrestricted moderator or administrator permission sets in the AdminCP are visually flagged. This prevents administrator confusion when they cannot do something as they will be able to quickly see if their account has restrictions. You can choose to be notified with a new Club is created. Moderators can now reply to any content item with a hidden reply. Download screenshot/watermarks can now be rebuilt if you change settings. Support for Facebook Pixel to easily track visitors. Moderators can now delete Gallery albums. Automatic moderation tools with rules to define when content should auto-hide based on user reports. Totally new member management view in AdminCP. More areas are mass-selectable like comments and AdminCP functions for easier management. New Features Commerce now has full Stripe support including fraud tools, Apple Pay, and other Stripe features. Commerce packages can now have various custom email events configured (expiring soon, purchased, expired). Full Emojii support in the editor. Setting so when someone is typing in an editor, other members will see a "Member X is typing..." status in the editor view. Complete overhaul of the Gallery upload and image views. Announcements system overhaul. Now global on all pages (not via widget) and new modes including dismissible announcements and top-header floating bar option. Many new reports on traffic and engagement in the AdminCP. Blog has new view modes to offer options for a traditional site blog or a community multi-member blog platform. The content-starter can now leave one reply to Reviews on their item. Commerce now makes it much easier to do basic account-subscriptions when there is no product attached. Useful Improvements Forums has a new widget where you can filter by tags. If tags are not required, the tag input box now indicates this so the member knows they do not have to put in tags. Member cover photos can now be clicked to see the full image. Any item with a poll now has a symbol on the list view. Twitch.tv embed support. You can now update/overwrite media in the Pages Media Manager. Mapbox as an additional map provider to Google Maps. Technical Changes Direct support for Sparkpost has been removed. Anyone currently using Sparkpost will automatically have their settings converted to the Sparkpost SMTP mode so your email will still work. Your cache engines (like Redis) will be checked on upgrade and in the support tool to ensure they are reachable. Third-party applications will now be visually labeled to distinguish them from Invision Community official applications. The queued tasks list in the AdminCP is now collapsed by default as queued tasks are not something people need to pay much attention to during normal operations. When upgrading from version 3 series you must convert your database to UTF8 and the system saves your original data in tables prefixed with orig. The AdminCP now alerts you these are still present and allows you to remove them to reclaim storage space. On new installs there are now reasonable defaults for upload limits to keep people from eating up storage space. Categories in all apps (forums, gallery albums, databases, etc.) no longer allow HTML in their titles. This has been a concern both in terms of security and usability so we were forced to restrict it. Large improvements to the Redis cache engine including use for sessions. The login with HTTPS option has been removed and those who were using it will be given instructions to convert their entire community to HTTPS. Images loaded through the proxy system now honor image limits for normal uploads. We now consider BBCode deprecated. We are not removing support but will not fix any future issues that may come up.
    • 1 comment
    • 138 views

Our community blogs

  1. Figured that now would be a good time to take a look at how things are going with your favorite gaming company.

    No, not them, I mean Onyx Path. Sheesh.

    After all, we’re near the end of the year – at least the part before everything gets holiday crazy – and next week we start our They Came From Beneath the Sea! Kickstarter.

    So let’s take advantage of the time period and have a little snapshot of where we are. We’ll do more of a “Year That Was” thing in a later blog, I think. (This one is long enough as it is – yeesh!)

    2018 was a challenging year, but one where we were able to catch up – finally! – on a lot of projects and start delivering some delayed ones…as well as delivering a bunch of Kickstarter projects earlier than estimated!

    If you recall from MMN blogs in the past, I started Onyx Path with a three-part plan for the sorts of projects we would take on, so let me divide my comments based on that.

    OnyxPublishingPartners2018-1024x576.jpg

    1- Our Wholly Owned Games:

    This category is perhaps our timeliest right now, with both books for Scion 2nd Edition and the Trinity Continuum Core and Aeon all having delivered their KS backer PDFs and in various stages of prepping for their traditional print-runs.

    This is very satisfying to be able to say, because as our KS backers know, a large part of the delay in getting these two lines to this point was needing to create a system for them that wouldn’t fall apart at higher power play, and which, frankly, was designed with an eye towards the last couple of decades worth of how games are played.

    And while still being a recognizable dice pool system for our fantastic fans of the first editions who kept these games alive all these years!

    Just today, our old friend and long-time writer and developer Bruce Baugh posted a long and informative “review” of Storypath on his Facebook page and RPG.net, and I’m taking the liberty of posting some of his thoughts here:

    I mean to say, if, on the other hand, you tell players that all active approaches are good – that every one solves some problems well and makes for entertaining drama in trying to solve ones it’s not so great for – the choice moves from “should I risk it?” to “_how_ should I risk it?”, because of course they’re taking the kind of risk and get to decide how. Presuming here that players want to have an adventurous good time, the game’s stepping up to point out the scenic attractions and give them a hand where the footing’s tricky. I love it.

    Or take a situation where the character’s pursuing someone, using the Athletics skill. The Forceful character uses Might, running fast, bursting through barriers, maybe throwing things to bring down the pursued, and so on. The Finesse character uses Dexterity, perhaps engaging in impromptu (or prepared!) parkour and acrobatics. The Resilience character uses Stamina, and might look for shortcuts that involve kind of long falls, knowing they’ll be able to take the blow, shake it off, and keep going. Every option is good, every option invites the player and Storyguide to look for opportunities to engage with the setting.

    Meanwhile, as those two lines move to printing, we have Scarred Lands, which seems to be living up to its name. After a decent start, we had to go back to square one and reconsider how to publish this classic White Wolf-created D20 game after the death of Stewart Wieck, who was originally my partner in publishing it.

    I’m glad to say that we indeed have a plan for how to “reactivate” Scarred Lands and you can look for a Kickstarter for the 5e version of the famous Creature Collection early next year. We’re teaming up with a brand new design studio to bring you a gorgeous and exciting new version of SL‘s classic monster manual as the start of more Scarred Lands greatness.

    If you’re looking for a Scarred Lands actual play, Travis Legge runs one on Twitch:
    They play Mondays from 2-4 PM CST at twitch.tv/plasticageplays and archive episodes on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzVwM7FjhlU&list=PLmiXCaSrrCIjmCJQQ7oLwLNahmDbdn_2J and release it in podcast form via anchor at https://anchor.fm/mythsandmatchmakers

    Blamire_TCFBTS-791x1024.jpgThey Came From Beneath the Sea! art by Larry Blamire

    And for the fourth of our Onyx-owned projects, the aforementioned They Came From Beneath the Sea! Kickstarter emerges from the waves next week on December 18th. Here’s a link to the teaser trailer, created by film legend Larry Blamire (Thanks, Larry!) and we’ll  be revealing an Actual Play vid later this week across our social media:

    Matthew and I will go into some more detail on what led up to this most unusual tabletop RPG next week!

    We have some possible new game ideas percolating away right now, but I’m not in too much of a hurry to launch a new one right away, there are still great expansions and ideas to explore for the ones we already have!

    #2- Creator-owned partner games:

    Headed up by Cavaliers of Mars and Realms of Pugmire (which includes Pugmire, Monarchies of Mau, FetchQuest, and the upcoming Pirates of Pugmire).

    These are different than a straight-up license, in that the creators are generally deeply involved with the project. Often they do a large percentage of the writing, or bring in teams they run for it. Depending on how we conceptualize the deal, they may have a lot of input on the art or just work on the concepts and let our art and layout folks do the voodoo that they do so well.

    Scarred Lands was originally structured far more like this.

    So, basically, I look for creative partners that have a very strong vision for the game world, and who I like and want to work with. From there, if the game line exists in the main book and some Stretch Goals, that’s cool. We made the thing and with the magic of the eternal shelf on DTRPG, that’s all it needs to be a success in my thinking.

    If the line keeps gathering interest, we’ll try out more projects if the creator is cool with that. That’s the key, we don’t do anything if they aren’t OK with it.

    For Cavaliers of Mars, we have just got the books selling into stores, and we’re going to see how things go. If you haven’t heard Rose talk about Cavs on the Onyx Pathcast interview that went live last Friday, it’s a great listen, and she gives advice on how to get started with Cavs as a bonus!

    Here is the link to that: https://onyxpathcast.podbean.com/e/episode-29-rose-on-mars/

    ShenFei_RollofGoodDogsandCats-210x300.pnRoll of Good Dogs and Cats art by Shen Fei

    Realms of Pugmire is the umbrella brand for Pugmire and Monarchies of Mau projects, and we still have a wide range of projects that came out of both Kickstarters. Here’s Eddy interviewed at PAX Unplugged by Gamerati: https://twitter.com/gamerati/status/1070095836233646081

    I currently have two creators talking to me about teaming up for their projects, and again, I’m pretty good with our current slate here, but if the opportunity suggests itself I am open to adding more.

    #3- Licensed games:

    Which of course start with our WW-owned World of Darkness, Chronicles of Darkness, and Exalted gamelines, but which also include Dystopia Rising: Evolution, and Legendlore.

    No doubt about it, this has been a challenging year with our White Wolf licenses. To give you an idea of the complexity, Matthew’s oversight is primarily “just” the WoD projects, and Dixie covers CofD and Exalted. Eddy covers all the rest, with Matt overseeing a bunch of our fiction projects.

    The transition to Vampire: The Masquerade 5th Edition, and getting Mage, Wraith, and Changeling 20th projects to final stages at the same time was a huge effort, but seeing the success of the V5 Chicago By Night Kickstarter has justified it. We felt it to be important for Onyx Path to be able to show what we could do with V5 books, as we had a few pundits insist we could only do “old” Vampire.

    Chicago By Night put the stake in that!

    We’re moving along really well on Exalted 3rd projects as well, with Dragon-Blooded looking to release its Backer PDF several months before estimate, and Lunars looking good for having its complete text ready for an early 2019 Kickstarter. Meanwhile, there have been monthly PDF releases all year, and smaller EX3 books working their way through the production progress list.

    I can’t say enough good things about the entire EX3 creative team, and I’ve just been impressed as hell with co-developers Robert Vance and Eric Minton. They work with their writing teams and with Dixie to maintain their vision for the line while incorporating the creativity of the team.

    The Chronicles of Darkness game lines continue to come on line in terms getting their projects finished up in reasonable time frames, and Dixie is still working with the creative teams to emphasize their strengths, and bolster the areas that give them trouble. We’ve had some real movement VtR2, and the Night Horrors books, and then Mage2 is getting back on track as well.

    As you can see in the project progress list below, we have some fantastic WW game line projects already rolling into next year, and a bunch of pitches at WW we are waiting to hear back on.

    We ran the Dystopia Rising: Evolution Kickstarter this last year, and it was enough to seed several added projects as Stretch Goals to the line. I don’t think we actually reached as many of DR‘s fans as we could have, judging by the comments we’ve received after the KS was done, so it will be interesting to see how sales go once it is in stores.

    We picked up this license for a few reasons. First, DR‘s top folk, Michael and Ashley, are extremely smart and creative folks who have innovated a lot in the LARP area, and we like people who can teach us stuff. Second, a new kind of zombie mythos that we, the horror “experts” hadn’t had a chance to play with.

    Third: zombies meet Mad Max. Love that woohoo concept. Finally, and really most importantly, it gave us a chance to try the Storypath System in a world that was both grittier and more horrific than baseline Scion or Trinity Continuum. This was really important, and from I’ve heard it works really well for this sort of genre.

    For Legendlore, well, apply what I’ve been saying about finding licenses that we can apply our aesthetics to, not visual aesthetics as we’re flexible about those, but design and thematic ones. For now, I’ll leave it at that, as the book has just appeared in the project process queue, and we’ll say a lot more about it next year.

    Will we be adding more licenses this year? Well, discussions continue on several properties, so we’ll see. Basically, a license has to be either one that we feel we can create compelling worlds from, even if it is an already existing game, and that works well with our publishing model, or that pays us oodles of cash for very little work (riiiight, and if you find one of those, let me know!).

    PatMcEvoy_TrinityCore.jpgTrinity Continuum Core art by Pat McEvoy

    We’re thrilled to be able to publish so many immersive worlds where players can find deep meaning in their game play. That’s a testament to the amazing writing and visuals that take us to all these places, and to an in-house team that has filled-in, rejuvenated, cajoled, encouraged, and relentlessly supported our out-of-house creative teams.

    Mighty Matt and Mirthful Mike, and our trio of Dixie, Matthew, and Eddy, have pushed, prodded, pleaded, and practically puked to get our vast array of projects finished with love and care this whole year, and their efforts are paying off big time as noted above!

    In fact, you can listen to the Terrific Trio every Friday on the Onyx Pathcast and often get some clues as to where the projects they are responsible for are headed, and the sorts of challenges they surmount every week.

    This Friday, they flash back to the conventions we attended a couple of weeks ago and tell each other about their favorite characters!

    Truly, this post has been all about our:

    Many Worlds, One Path!

    BLURBS!


    KICKSTARTER:

    TCFBTS-Logo-300x164.png

    Next up, we’re working on the Kickstarter for They Came From Beneath the Sea! (TCFBtS!), which has some very different additions to the Storypath mechanics we’ll be explaining during the KS.  They take an excellent 50’s action and investigation genre game and turn it to 11!

    Check out the teaser above!

    Looking to start on Dec 18th at 1pm EST but run it extra long into January!

    ELECTRONIC GAMING:

    onyx_dice-300x146.png

    As we find ways to enable our community to more easily play our games, the Onyx Dice Rolling App is now live! Our dev team has been doing updates since we launched based on the excellent use-case comments by our community, and this thing is both rolling and rocking!

    ON AMAZON AND BARNES & NOBLE:

    You can now read our fiction from the comfort and convenience of your Kindle (from Amazon) and Nook (from Barnes & Noble).

    If you enjoy these or any other of our books, please help us by writing reviews on the site of the sales venue you bought it from. Reviews really, really help us with getting folks interested in our amazing fiction!

    Our selection includes these fiction books:

    Fiction-Wave-1-300x102.pngFiction-Wave-2-300x102.pngFiction-Wave-3-300x93.pngAmazon-Wave-4-300x100.pngFiction-Wave-51-300x103.png

    OUR SALES PARTNERS:

    logo.png

    We’re working with Studio2 to get Pugmire out into stores, as well as to individuals through their online store. You can pick up the traditionally printed main book, the Screen, and the official Pugmire dice through our friends there!

    https://studio2publishing.com/search?q=pugmire

    And we’ve added Prince’s Gambit to our Studio2 catalog: https://studio2publishing.com/products/prince-s-gambit-card-game

    iprlogo

    Looking for our Deluxe or Prestige Edition books? Try this link! http://www.indiepressrevolution.com/xcart/Onyx-Path-Publishing/

    Here’s the link to the press release we put out about how Onyx Path is now selling through Indie Press Revolution: http://theonyxpath.com/press-release-onyx-path-limited-editions-now-available-through-indie-press-revolution/

    And you can now order Pugmire: the book, the screen, and the dice! http://www.indiepressrevolution.com/xcart/manufacturers.php?manufacturerid=296

    DRIVETHRURPG.COM:

    site-logo-redesignd-300x64.png
    Cavs-Vance-Shirt.jpg

    This week, in celebration of both Monarchies of Mau and Cavaliers of Mars being live for retailers in Studio2, we have new themed merchandise on our RedBubble store: postcards and mugs and all sorts of stuff!

    CONVENTIONS

    Start getting ready for our appearance at MidWinter this January in Milwaukee! So many demos, playtests, secret playtests, and Onyx Path Q&As you could plotz!


    And now, the new project status updates!

    DEVELOPMENT STATUS FROM FAST EDDY WEBB (projects in bold have changed status since last week):

    First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep)

    • C20 Novel (Jackie Cassada) (Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition)
    • M20 The Technocracy Reloaded (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
    • M20 Victorian Mage (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
    • City of the Towered Tombs (Cavaliers of Mars)
    • Mummy: The Curse 2nd Edition core rulebook (Mummy: The Curse 2nd Edition)
    • Scion Jumpstart (Scion 2nd Edition)
    • Geist2e Fiction Anthology (Geist: The Sin-Eaters 2nd Edition)
    • Pirates of Pugmire (Realms of Pugmire)
    • Distant Worlds (Trinity Continuum: Aeon)
    • Dragon-Blooded Novella #1 (Exalted 3rd Edition)
    • Across the Eight Directions (Exalted 3rd Edition)
    • Exalted Essay Collection (Exalted)
    • Legendlore core book (Legendlore)
    • Creatures of the World Bestiary (Scion 2nd Edition)

    Redlines

    • Deviant: The Renegades (Deviant: The Renegades)
    • Witch-Queen of the Shadowed Citadel (Cavaliers of Mars)
    • Scion Companion: Mysteries of the World (Scion 2nd Edition)
    • Memento Mori: the GtSE 2e Companion (Geist: The Sin-Eaters 2nd Edition)

    Second Draft

    • Tales of Good Dogs – Pugmire Fiction Anthology (Pugmire)
    • Night Horrors: Nameless and Accursed (Mage: the Awakening Second Edition)
    • Heirs to the Shogunate (Exalted 3rd Edition)
    • Scion Ready Made Characters (Scion 2nd Edition)

    Development

    • Hunter: the Vigil 2e core (Hunter: the Vigil 2nd Edition)
    • CofD Contagion Chronicle (Chronicles of Darkness)
    • Lunars: Fangs at the Gate (Exalted 3rd Edition)
    • WoD Ghost Hunters (World of Darkness)
    • Oak, Ash, and Thorn: Changeling: The Lost 2nd Companion (Changeling: The Lost 2nd)
    • CofD Dark Eras 2 (Chronicles of Darkness)

    Manuscript Approval:

    • Wr20 Book of Oblivion (Wraith: The Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition)
    • Trinity Continuum: Aberrant core (Trinity Continuum: Aberrant)

    Editing:

    • Signs of Sorcery (Mage: the Awakening Second Edition)
    • Aeon Aexpansion (Trinity Continuum: Aeon)
    • Dystopia Rising: Evolution (Dystopia Rising: Evolution)
    • M20 Book of the Fallen (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
    • Adventures for Curious Cats (Monarchies of Mau)
    • In Media Res (Trinity Continuum: Core)
    • Tales of Excellent Cats (Monarchies of Mau)
    • V5 Chicago By Night (Vampire: The Masquerade)
    • Spilled Blood (Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition)
    • Night Horrors: Shunned by the Moon (Werewolf: The Forsaken 2nd Edition)

    Post-Editing Development:

    • C20 Players’ Guide (Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition)

    Indexing:

    ART DIRECTION FROM MIRTHFUL MIKE:

    In Art Direction

    • Dystopia Rising: Evolution – Finals coming in.
    • Geist 2e
    • The Realm 
    • Ex3 Monthly Stuff
    • Chicago By Night – Contracting next bits.
    • C20 Player’s Guide – Still sketches and more sketches.
    • Aeon Aexpansion
    • They Came From Beneath the Sea! – KS prep.
    • EX3 Lunars Sketches coming in, some finals already.
    • Signs of Sorcery
    • In Media Res

    Marketing Stuff

    In Layout

    • Ex3 Dragon Blooded – 2nd proof.
    • Ex Novel 2 (Aaron Rosenberg) 

    Proofing

    • Scion Hero – Page XXs and then Indexing.
    • Scion Origin – Page XXs and then Indexing.
    • CtL2 Jumpstart – At WW for approval.
    • M20: Gods and Monsters – With Phil.
    • Pugmire Roll of Good Dogs and Cats
    • Trinity Core – Waiting for errata from Backer PDF.
    • Trinity Aeon – Waiting for errata from Backer PDF.

    At Press

    • Wraith 20th – Waiting for new cover proof. Everything else good to go though.
    • Wraith 20 Screen – Printing.
    • Scion Dice – At Studio2.
    • Lost 2e Screen – Printing.
    • Scion Screen – Printing.
    • Changeling: The Lost 2e – Soon shipping from printer to shipper. PoD proof ordered.
    • Fetch Quest – Proof sent back to manufacturer, printing starting.
    • Exalted 3rd Novel – Prepping for release.
    • PtC Tormented PoD proof ordered.

    TODAY’S REASON TO CELEBRATE: 

    It’s 7th Sea creator John Wick’s birthday today. I’m sure he doesn’t feel a day older than YARRR!



    View the full article

  2. With the current setup I feel we are more then ready, teachnically, to meet the demands of a great community again in 2018. The basis has been there for many years of course, but with some additions we now have a very capable platform to stand on:

     

    The Forums

    The forums are state of the art and the best community forum software out there. It has all the features needed to make sure we have an engaging experience. With good membership functions such as user groups, private messages and all the editing tools needed this is a strong foundation to build from. New views can be chosen depending on how you want to see the forums: list view which is the old view, block view give a different approach to that view and then topic view that should you the updated topics based on your selection of forums to keep track of.

     

    Clubs

    Clubs is a new standard function and it allow for creating your own little space on Shadownessence. Its perfect for creating communities inside communities such as your own gaming club, a RPG chronicle club, an art club or a writing club to mention a few versions. Every club can have their own discussion areas, galleries, download, blogs and calendars of course. Clubs can be open to anyone, private so no one even can find them without invitation or public but you need to be invited.

     

    The Calendar

    An old feature that is maturing a bit with features such as RSVP so you know who will join or not. You can even set up a RSVP limit if you have an event with limited seats. You can create venues if you have frequent events in the same location, like your gaming HQ. I have added a community calendar for pretty much anything and also a special calendar for events. This allow you to add your events so you may get some attention to your events.

     

    The Gallery

    A much appreciated function has returned and we now need to rebuild it again. I have reached out to our old patrons and will contact the artists I have on my personal social networks as well. We have a lot of good artists in the community so hopefully some of them will add their creations from Deviant Art and other places. I will contact the V5 art director Mary Lee as well to see if I can lure her in here as well with her great art.

     

    The Downloads

    It's in a terrible shape, but the function is there. I have contacted @MrGonev5 to ask permission to add his extensive collection of character sheets as we had in the past. I will also see if we can get some permission for the WoD fonts and other things that can be of use for you. Eventually the plan is to create a few skins for these forums as well that can be used for creating your own community. It's work in progress though and it will take a while to beck into shape.

     

    The Classifieds

    A new section with two purposes: List every single book available to purchase from drivethrurpg.com and to let you sell and buy items you are missing from your collection. I have added sections for some optional categories as well, such as books, magazines, games and of course art for our talented artists. As this is a very new section for Shadownessence we'll see how this will evolve and how we should set it up. Right now it's setup with a $1 fee for each transaction to support the site, but that might very well be removed if we see that it's hurting the users in any way.

     

    The Videos section (with Twitch support)

    Another rather new feature where I was amazed over how much content there are out there! I found some great video creators, and not just the official ones, and I think this can be a fun feature to have. It's fast and easy to add new videos and for those that are active on Twitch we have support for live streaming as well. As the new video games come out I am sure we will see new streamers and with this we have a good place to showcase them.

     

    The blogs

    The blogs allow anyone to write, not just management. You can create group blogs, which is great for news and articles that you share with others. You can create your own blog for any number of reasons, like expressing your opinions on the upcoming V5 material, report on events or why not make it a character diary of sorts? In the World of darkness news blog I am using the RSS import feature to grab the latest news from WhiteWolf and Onyx Path so you always get the latest news with links t he original article.

     

    The Raffles and Give Aways

    If you remember a long time ago, we had Raffles to support the site and we got so much support from the WhiteWolf authors that donated books and other items. This funtionality is now back and it's open to anyone if you want to host a raffle or give away. I am looking into the best ways to use this to give away some books and other items together with for example drivethrurpg.com and WhiteWolf themselves. I think this can be something fun and hopefully we can get some traction on the old "Month of the" feature that we had a long time ago where we featured a certain system for a month.

     

    Discord (widget)

    Chat has always been a big deal as Shadownessence was created out of the old Dark City RPG chat created almost 20 years ago now. We have a Discord server setup thanks to @Amaranth and you can see a Discord Widget on the forum start page.  I have added the user groups there so you should have the same user group there as on the forums. For now we are just having a good time chatting in the void, but we will for sure have game related sections soon and I also hear some whispers that we might have some IC RPG chat happening in the future....

     

     

    That is just the beginning....

    Visually these forums are using a purchased theme and as time permit I will look into making a custom skin for it. For now I will simply adjust the things that is already here and then time will tell when a new layout will be possible.

     

    In the coming weeks we will get several new features in the 4.3 update from invision Community. These are coming with regular intervals as they have done for the past 15 years or so, but expect the blogs to have a much needed visual update and that the clubs functions can be seen in the forums and so on after that update.

     

    Content Discovery

    • We now support Elasticsearch which is a search utility that allows for much faster and more reliable searching.
    • The REST API now supports search functions.
    • Both MySQL and Elasticsearch have new settings for the admin to use to set search-defaults and default content weighting to better customize search logic to your community.
    • Visitors can now search for Content Pages and Commerce Products.
    • When entering a search term, members now see a more clear interface so they know what areas they are searching in and the method of search.

    Member Engagement

    Clubs

    • Option to make a Club visible but invite-only
    • Admins can set an option so any Club a member is part of will also show in the parent application. So if you are in a Club that has a Gallery tab then those image will show both in the Club and in the main Gallery section of the community.
    • Club members can now follow an entire Club rather than just each content section.
    • There is a new option on the Club directory page for a list view which is useful for communities with many Clubs.
    • If you have Commerce you can now enable paid memberships to Clubs.
    • Admins can set limits on number of Clubs per group.
    • If a group has delete permission in their Club, they can now delete empty containers as well.
    • Members can ignore invitations.

    Moderation and Administration

    New Features

    Useful Improvements

    Technical Changes

    • Direct support for Sparkpost has been removed. Anyone currently using Sparkpost will automatically have their settings converted to the Sparkpost SMTP mode so your email will still work.
    • Your cache engines (like Redis) will be checked on upgrade and in the support tool to ensure they are reachable.
    • Third-party applications will now be visually labeled to distinguish them from Invision Community official applications.
    • The queued tasks list in the AdminCP is now collapsed by default as queued tasks are not something people need to pay much attention to during normal operations.
    • When upgrading from version 3 series you must convert your database to UTF8 and the system saves your original data in tables prefixed with orig. The AdminCP now alerts you these are still present and allows you to remove them to reclaim storage space.
    • On new installs there are now reasonable defaults for upload limits to keep people from eating up storage space.
    • Categories in all apps (forums, gallery albums, databases, etc.) no longer allow HTML in their titles. This has been a concern both in terms of security and usability so we were forced to restrict it.
    • Large improvements to the Redis cache engine including use for sessions.
    • The login with HTTPS option has been removed and those who were using it will be given instructions to convert their entire community to HTTPS.
    • Images loaded through the proxy system now honor image limits for normal uploads.
    • We now consider BBCode deprecated. We are not removing support but will not fix any future issues that may come up.
×