I’ve been slowly working on the new vision for the Textfyre.Com website. It’s very much a work in progress and in the very early stages of development. If you’re concerned about design aspects, be patient. There will be artwork and prettiness added later. The site is going to be a portal for games and that functionality is at the core of the changes. There will be a lot of AJAX and Web 2.0 features and a new AJAX based FyreVM implementation called Zifmia (open source). Here’s the plan so far:
Game Portal Features
Zifmia will provide the ability to offer Interactive Fiction in the same way that a website offers web pages. Using AJAX, we’ll send commands to a server dedicated to Zifmia games (based on a modified stateless FyreVM engine). The web page will receive the response from the Zifmia server in JSON format, which will be stored locally using jStorage, unpacked, and written to the web page as required. There will be no scroll bar text window. Each response will be displayed in full in the main text area in the center of the portal. Each “turn” or response will be saved as history to local storage. There will be user interface features that allow the user to easily page through the history of their game play. This will happen by pulling the appropriate JSON data out of local storage and displaying it on the web page. If the user closes their browser, they can always come back to the same state they left the website in, carrying on with their game.
Game Search Features
At the bottom of the page there is a rectangle with the word “menu” as a placeholder. This area will be a place to scroll horizontally through game titles. The game titles will be represented by their cover art. When clicked, a light box will display the information about the game, which allows the user to start the game immediately. If the user is in the middle of a game, its state will be stored and we will start the new game automatically. What’s really cool is that we will keep track of all of the “games in progress” somewhere on the web page. Jumping to any game in progress will be a single click.
Similar to the previous website, we will have people register and login for certain types of content, mostly paid content, but there are other (legitimate) reasons for asking people to register. Anyone that’s registered and logged in will have access to paid content, beta versions, insider news, and more.
Cross Device Delivery
The biggest change to Textfyre is that it will focus on delivering games (ours and others) to many mobile devices in addition to the traditional desktop and laptop devices. The portal will prominently identify all of the current devices and available content.
Another big change in Textfyre.Com is that we will begin to widen the type of content we promote and sell. This will include more mature themes and may include games with profanity, violence, and mild sexual themes (nothing explicit!).
Textfyre.Com will partner with other publishers and content creators to provide a wide variety of content.
Textfyre.Com will begin to carry skyscraper advertisements that will be located on the sides of the portal.