Alderman RPG Version 1.5 Revamp

Summary

After the grand release of Alderman v1.0 I knew I needed to make some drastic quality of life changes. If v1.0 is the minimum viable product then v1.5 is the official release. I wanted to create something that is useful, fun, and easy to use; in which v1.0 failed miserably.

The goal of v1.5 is to fix all known performance bugs, manage state better, create a better user experience, and better convey how to use the app.

Patch Notes

  • Improved routing (links) speed
  • Using Sass instead of CSS
  • Minor style updates
  • Improved user authorization performance
  • Improved app state performance
  • Added list pagination
  • Disabled local datastore
    • Now only logged in users can create new Loot and Loot Tables, as well as view their history (sorry)
  • You can now close prompts by click empty space outside of them
  • Navigation bar update

Breakdown

A lot of the changes in this patch are going to be behind the scenes. There are a few minor UI updates but nothing major. I wanted to make sure the site was maintainable and performant before I started adding new major features.

The biggest update was changing the routing strategy to use react-router which allows for in-app route updates. This is tech speak for when you click a link it’s much faster because it doesn’t need to reload the page. In the previous version when you clicked a link it would reload the entire app which is obviously much slower than just changing the page. Very fast, much wow!

The second biggest change is another behind the scenes update. I implemented redux state management throughout the application so data that is loaded will now persist across the application making it much faster. This means it doesn’t need to reload every time it needs information such as the Users profile information. Functionally everything will look exactly the same but will perform much better.

I also added some quality-of-life change such as paginating large lists, clicking outside of prompts close them, and cleaned up the navigation menu bar. I’m hoping that this will make the app much easier to use. I know that it’s a little confusing off the bat and I want to make it as streamlined as possible.

Lastly, I had to make the decision to only allow authenticated user to be able to create and manage their own custom loot. The reason for this was technical and not motivated by a need for users to login. In order to create the best experience in the application I locked the Loot “History”, “Create Loot”, and “Create Loot Tables” unless you are logged in.

While this is a bit of a stealth update since not a lot has changed on the surface I’m hoping this update is a large step in the right direction and helps provide users the best possible experience. Happy Role Playing!

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