Difference between revisions of "New Curation Format"

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This guide will walk you through everything you need to know about putting together a curation and submitting it to Flashpoint. If this is your first time contributing, be sure to follow our [[Curation Tutorial|step-by-step tutorial]].
#REDIRECT [[Curation Format]]
==What is a Curation?==
Flashpoint is not just a collection of files; it is a museum of playable web games. As in any other museum, each item needs to be curated before it can be put on display. Curating for Flashpoint is more than downloading an SWF, dropping it off in the Discord and expecting it to appear in the next update. You'll need a specific folder setup, screenshots, and a text file, all packaged in an archive called a ''curation''. All of this will be explained as you read further.
==Before You Start==
===Checking the Master List===
Before curating, please check the [[Game Master List]] (and for animations, the [[Animation Master List]]) before possibly taking time out of your day to save something that's already been saved. '''Use CTRL+F to search the list of titles.'''
===Barred Games===
{{:Not Accepted Games}}
A ''curation'' is a compressed folder (any common archive format like ZIP or 7Z is fine). To make a curation, first create a new folder with the name of the game you'd like to save. (Windows won't let you create a folder name with certain special characters; you'll need to remove them from the folder name if that happens.) Inside your curation folder, you'll add a ''screenshot'' and ''logo'', a ''text file'' containing metadata about the game, and a ''content'' folder containing all of the files required to run the game. The following sections will explain each of these required items in detail. Be sure to download our complete [https://bluepload.unstable.life/alienhominid.zip example curation ZIP file] and follow along.
<gallery mode="traditional">
Image:FolderContents.png | A sample of what a completed curation folder looks like.
All content must be placed inside a '''content''' folder, then arranged in the same way that they would be placed in Flashpoint proper from the htdocs folder - the best practice is to try and recreate the same structure that the game had on the internet. For example, if a game was hosted at 'http://uploads.ungrounded.net/59000/59593_alien_booya202c.swf' you would do the folders in this example like the image below. If that is not working for some reason, a secondary format is acceptable - a domain folder, a folder with the game's name, then the game files, displayed as the second example.
You might notice that some games in Flashpoint use a domain called <code>localflash</code> instead of a website domain. This is a legacy practice, and it is '''not used anymore''' unless the source files come from a CD, ZIP file, or other offline location.
<gallery mode="traditional">
Image:Curate1.png | This is assuming you've already tested the game with Flashpoint Core. '''Don't forget the folder with the game's name!'''
Logos must be in PNG format, and have the entire title of a game, or something that is representative of the game. To be named 'logo.png' in all cases.
Recommended tools include Snipping Tool and Paint, both included in Windows 10 by default. You're free to use other tools, just remember, always use PNG.
<gallery mode="traditional">
Image:Logo-bad.png | Bad example. Crop it down to just the logo.
Image:Logo-good3.png | Good example. Logo is sufficiently cropped.
Image:Logo-good.png | Good example. Can show off a bit of the artist's work, but no menu options or other things to get in the way.
Image:Logo-good2.PNG | Good example. If no title is available, a decent shot of the focal point of the game will do instead.
Screenshots must be in PNG format, and have a credible 'action shot' of the game (no menus or obvious tutorials). To be named 'ss.png' in all cases.
Recommended tools include Snipping Tool and Paint, both included in Windows 10 by default. You're free to use other tools, just remember, always use PNG.
<gallery mode="traditional">
Image:Ss-bad1.png | Bad example. Don't show obvious tutorials.
Image:Ss-bad2.png | Bad example. Don't show menus, unless the entire point of the game is menus. Work your way to a battle in an RPG or strategy game.
Image:Ss-good.png | Good example. Shows some action. Dying is sometimes unavoidable - don't feel bad if the screenshot is otherwise good.
Image:Ss-good2.png | Great example. Shows a lot of action and what the game's big draw is.
The metadata must be included in a file named '''meta.txt'''. The table below shows all of the fields that you can include in your meta.txt files. All fields should be included if they are applicable. Pay special attention to fields marked with <span style="color:#ff0000">*</span> - they are required at least some of the time. If a field is not applicable and not required for your curation, either omit it or leave it blank.
Many fields allow multiple values. If they do, separate each value with a <code>;</code> (semicolon).
Some fields have a few possible values to choose from. If this is the case, they'll be shown in the table as a bulleted list, with the default value in ''italics''. If you omit this type of field, it will take on its default value automatically.
===List of Metadata Fields===
{| class="wikitable sortable"
! Field !! Explanation
| '''Title'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| '''Always required.''' The name of the game, in full. When in doubt, use the name indicated in the game's logo. We plan to allow multiple values to indicate alternate names, but this is not implemented yet.
| '''Library'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| '''Required if you are curating for Flashpoint Theatre.''' Possible values:
* ''Arcade'': This is a game that should go in Flashpoint Arcade.
* Theatre: This is an animation that should go in Flashpoint Theatre.
| '''Series'''
| The franchise or game series.
| '''Developer'''
| The name of the developer, or developers. Separate multiple developers with the <code>;</code> symbol. Make sure that each person or game studio actually developed the game; sponsorship does not count. Look for a Credits section!
| '''Publisher'''
| The site that published (sponsored/branded) the game. Look for a "More Games" link or prominent logo; it will probably lead to the Publisher's website.
| '''Play Mode'''
| One of the following, but up to three per game is possible:
* ''Single Player'': A solo experience from start to finish.
* Cooperative: Like "Single Player", but with others being in the journey of finishing the game from start to finish.
* Multiplayer: Playing against someone else or multiple players in a session, competing to win.
| '''Status'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| One of the following:
* ''Playable'': Fully playable from beginning to end. Not hacked or modified.
* Partial: Game is only partially playable, whether because of missing files or features that Flashpoint cannot properly implement. You'll need to elaborate further in the Notes.
* Hacked: Game has been hacked or modified to work in Flashpoint. Use the Notes field to explain what has been modified.
| '''Release Date'''
| The date that the game was first released. Use YYYY-MM-DD format, with whatever precision is available. For example, if you knew a game was released in January 2010, you could say <code>2010-01</code>.
| '''Version'''
| The version number of the game. This is for revisions of the same game, not games in series.
| '''Languages'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| '''Required if you are curating a game that supports languages other than English.'''
A list of all languages that the game supports. Use [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_ISO_639-1_codes ISO 639-1 language codes] and separate each code with <code>;</code>. For example, if a game supports English and Spanish, you would say <code>en; es</code>.
| '''Extreme'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| '''Required if you are curating something unsuitable for minors.''' Possible values:
* Yes: Indicates that a game is unsuitable for minors because of excessive violence, sexual content, or other mature content.
* ''No'': Indicates that a game is suitable for minors.
| '''Tags'''
| See [[Tags]]. Separate multiple tags with <code>;</code>. The section headings (Action, Adventure, etc) may be used as tags as well.
| '''Source'''
| The URL of the webpage where you found the game. If you found the game on [https://web.archive.org/ Wayback Machine], follow this format: <code>Original URL (Via Wayback Machine)</code>. If you found the game somewhere other than a webpage, use whatever format you find appropriate to indicate the source.
| '''Platform'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| The ''web game technology'' that the game uses. See the [[#Appendix I: Flashpoint Platforms|Appendix]] for a list of platforms supported.
If your curation omits this field, the Platform is assumed to be Flash. '''This field is required for all non-Flash curations.'''
| '''Application Path'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| The path to the application to use to launch the game. This path is relative to the main Flashpoint folder. For example, the Application Path for most Flash games is <code>FPSoftware\Flash\flashplayer_32_sa.exe</code>.
If the Application Path is omitted, it will be automatically chosen based on the game's Platform. See the [[#Appendix I: Flashpoint Platforms|Appendix]] for a list of default Application Paths for each Platform. '''We recommend that you always use this field.'''
| '''Launch Command'''<span style="color:#ff0000">*</span>
| The location of your file inside the content folder, replicating an internet URL. This is case-sensitive. '''Never have https:// at the beginning of a URL, it will eventually break something. ALWAYS use http://. If a URL has https:// at the beginning, it's wrong, end of story.'''
'''This field is always required.''' If you're having trouble figuring out the correct launch command, see [[Curation Tutorial]].
| '''Notes'''
| A message that will appear in the right panel of the launcher. Reserve this for important tidbits related to how the game works that should be known before playing. For multi-line Notes, use the pipe symbol: <code>Notes: <nowiki> | </nowiki></code>, then indent each line of the Notes. See the Examples section for more details.
| '''Curation Notes'''
| Use this field to show a message to BlueMaxima if he needs to add your curation in a different way from usual. For multi-line Curation Notes, use the pipe symbol: <code>Curation Notes: <nowiki> | </nowiki></code>, then indent each line of the Notes. See the Examples section for more details.
| '''Additional Applications'''
| Use this section to add a message that pops up before a game runs, a link to an Extras folder, or an alternate version of a game. For more details, see the [[#Appendix II: Additional Applications|Appendix]].
===A Good meta.txt===
Title: Alien Hominid
Developer: The Behemoth
Publisher: Newgrounds.com
Play Mode: Single Player
Release Date: 2002-08-07
Version: 1.0
Extreme: No
Tags: Shooter
Source: https://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/59593
Platform: Flash
Application Path: FPSoftware\Flash\flashplayer_32_sa.exe
Launch Command: http://uploads.ungrounded.net/59000/59593_alien_booya202c.swf
Notes: |
This is our sample curation in Flashpoint Core.
Multiple lines in notes and descriptions are cool.
Curation Notes: Thanks for your work!</nowiki>
===Blank meta.txt===
Play Mode:
Release Date:
Application Path:
Launch Command:
Original Description:
Curation Notes:
Additional Applications: </nowiki>
You'll need [https://bluemaxima.org/flashpoint/downloads/ Flashpoint Core] to test your games in a lightweight copy of Flashpoint you can afford to break.
Place the files from inside your content folder within the '''Server\htdocs\''' directory. Once you've done this, open the Core launcher, click the "New Game" button in the bottom right and mirror the info from your Meta.txt into the right panel. Click the checkmark and open your curation - if everything goes well, your game should open in a new window! If it doesn't, make sure you're copying the contents of your content folder and not the folder itself.
'''All games should be tested in Flashpoint, if not Core then at least the full version. Just opening the game in a projector or browser is not enough of a test.'''
==Packing it up==
You've finished your first curation! All of these files should now be packed into a single .ZIP file and submitted to our #curator-lounge on the Discord. If your curation is up to snuff, you'll be given Trial Curator status, which will let you submit curations through the curation channels. You can use Discord's own upload feature for files under 8MB, or [https://unstable.life/submissions.html our own file host] for bigger files. This is also linked in the channel topics of our submission channels on Discord.
[https://bluepload.unstable.life/alienhominid.zip Here is the full example ZIP file.]
(This was also linked earlier, in the Overview section).
==After Submitting==
===Editing Your Curations===
If you notice a mistake with your curation after you've submitted it, just delete it and resubmit. (If you used our upload service, you might have to ask a Curator to delete your file for you.) If your curation has already been added to Flashpoint read our article on [[Metadata Edits]] and head over to the #metadata-edits channel in our Discord so you can make necessary changes. If you're wondering whether your curation has been added to Flashpoint yet, look for a <code>:Tools:</code> emoji reaction anywhere below your post in the Curations channel.
===Having Problems?===
Because we can't remind you enough already: [https://discord.gg/S9uJ794 Join our Discord] and ask away in the #help-me-please channel.
==Appendix I: Flashpoint Platforms==
==Appendix II: Additional Applications==
The ''Additional Applications'' metadata field can be used to add Messages, Extras, or Alternates to a curation. Each of these items is explained in detail below.
Use the Message sub-field to add a short, one-line message that pops up before a game runs. If there's something that Flashpoint users need to know before playing a game, use this field.
For example, here is the Additional Applications field of a game that starts in fullscreen and is difficult to close:
Additional Applications:
    Message: This game starts in fullscreen. To exit, alt-tab and close the window in the taskbar.</nowiki>
Extras allow you to include a folder of bonus materials with your curation. If you would like to include files related to a game that are not required to play it, such as source code or unlockable items, this is how you can do it:
# Inside your curation's folder, next to the <code>content</code> folder, create a folder called <code>Extras</code>.
# Place all of the bonus materials you would like to include inside of the Extras folder.
# In the Notes field of your <code>meta.txt</code>, add a short explanation of what's included in the Extras folder.
# In the Additional Applications field of your <code>meta.txt</code>, add an Extras sub-field like this: <code>Extras: gamename</code>.
For example, here is the Additional Applications field of a game called ''Tokyo Guinea Pop''. The curation's Extras folder contains unlockable items from the game's original website.
Additional Applications:
    Extras: tokyoguineapop</nowiki>
Alternates allow you to add alternate versions of a game. This is commonly used to add older versions of a game, alternate languages of a game, or hacked versions from sites like Arcade Prehacks. Note that all of the files required to run an Alternate should be included in the <code>content</code> folder of your curation, along with the files for the main version.
To add an alternate to the Additional Applications field, include a Heading, with an Application Path and Launch Command indented under it.
For example, the curation of a game called ''Drop 3'' includes a hacked version. Here is the Additional Applications field of this curation:
Additional Applications:
    Play Hacked Version:
        Application Path: FPSoftware\Flash\flashplayer_32_sa.exe
        Launch Command: http://www.irregulargames.com/drop3/drop3-hacked.swf</nowiki>

Latest revision as of 10:17, 1 November 2019

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