Skizzium Mods: March 2024 Update

We took some time to do internal refactors and rewrites in order to reduce the amount of bugs long-term. Not only that, but we also introduced some new exciting features! Let's dive into it.

Skizzium Mods: March 2024 Update

Last time we talked about the website, we said we'll take some time to do internal refactors and rewrites in order to improve the development process and reduce the amount of bugs long-term. Well, those refactors are finally complete.

Not only did we rewrite the entire backend and bump the API to v2, but we also introduced some new features! Let's dive into it.

A note on Early Access

Before we get into the new features, we'd like to remind you that the Skizzium platform is still in early access. We ask you to be patient and remember that bugs are expected. You can help us out by reporting any bugs you find in our Discord server or our bug tracker.

API v2

The biggest part of this update is the complete rewrite of our backend. This allowed us to introduce significant simplifications to the API, making it more intuitive and powerful for our future developers.

Photo by Douglas Lopes / Unsplash

One key change is the renaming of "modable games" to "mod hubs" across all fields, endpoints, and objects. We believe calling those collections of mods "hubs" is more fitting because we want to support more than just games - we want to support apps as well. Such apps are the Skizzium Launcher, Discord and so on.

Another improvement is the removal the so-called "listed" objects. In v1, those objects would be returned by all listing endpoints (such as GET /mods). In v2, we decided we wanted to simplify endpoints and we decided to just return the full objects in listing requests. As a result we decided to move some object fields to separate endpoints, such as mod release files, which are now separate objects with their own getting and listing endpoints.

We believe developers should be able to utilize our API to its full potential, which is why we've been developing it since the beginning. As a matter of fact, our own frontend is entirely powered by it! To further this vision, we're actively developing comprehensive public documentation and user guides. Stay tuned to our social media or roadmap for further updates.

More Convenient Downloads

One of the things we really disliked in the initial release of the platform is the way file downloads were implemented.

This confusing system that downloaded files in the background before saving them on your computer is the result of a poor planning. When we initially realized our implementation didn't work well with browsers, we had a decision to make - use this poor implementation or go back and do a breaking API change that would ripple across the backend, the documentation and the client library.

Now that we're already doing breaking API changes, we decided to do a slight overhaul of this system and make it more browser-friendly. If you try downloading a file now it'll appear as any other download would and the entire process will be handled by your browser.

Mod Comments

Getting feedback on your mod as a developer or learning more about a specific mod has just become easier! Introducing mod comments, where everyone can participate in the conversation.

Share your thoughts, insights, and experiences right on the mod page. Need help installing? Ask the developer! Want to share a cool tip? Comment away!

Replies let you respond directly to others, fostering a vibrant community around every mod. That's right, you can easily tell that one persistent person they can simply extract the ZIP in their game folder to install the mod.

Overhauled Moderation System

This update brings a much-needed overhaul to the mod moderation system which has been tedious to work with for both moderators and developers since the website came out.

For starters, mod files are no longer reviewed manually, they're now automatically checked for viruses by our system and get either approved or rejected based on the results. Additionally, mod releases no longer require reviews, meaning that once you have finished preparing your release and all your files get approved, you can directly publish it with no additional wait times.

Out of the original system, only one thing remains - the initial review your mod has to go through before becoming public. This initial review will have moderators look through your release, your files and your mod page to assess if it complies with our Content Policy. For your convenience we've also introduced a new feature - review history. You can now view the full history of approvals, rejections, bans and unbans of your mod from the developer portal.

The review history popup in the developer portal

You're wondering - "what bans?" Well, in this update we have introduced the ability for moderators to properly ban mods (aka force-delist them). For the time being, there is no proper appeal system on the website and you'll have to go through our support portal in case of incorrect bans.

Other Quality of Life Changes

And now for some rapid-fire small quality of life changes that improve your experience on our website:

  • The Fredoka One title font was replaced with Rubik for better readability and a cleaner look
  • The developer portal sidebar has received slight improvements as a part of our ongoing task of improving the developer interface.
  • Mods can now be easily transferred to other users. This used to be an API-only functionality but is now fully supported by the website.
  • The amount of screenshots and tags required to release a mods was lowered to 2 as a result of user feedback.
  • The maximum amount of files a release can have has been lowered to 10. This change will not impact releases that currently exceed the new limit.

Bug Fixes

  • Fixed an issue where clicking a carousel entry on the home page directed to /mods/mod-name rather than the proper URL.
  • Fixed an issue where the mobile navigation did not follow the current hub's theme.
  • Fixed an issue where the clicking the view all button while looking at a mod's releases page directed to /releases/releases.
  • Fixed an issue where the under construction placeholder images didn't get updated after going back from a mod hub.
  • Fixed an issue where social media embeds would not display proper title, description and other information about pages, hubs and mods.
  • Improved responsiveness of Release Lists.
  • Updated Twitter (X) and Reddit logos.