Article / News

Announcing Updated Review Search Options


Last week, I mentioned we had some review maintenance to perform over the week/weekend. I am pleased to announce that we have finished our backend updates, and nothing exploded! Hooray! So what changed?

The super short version is that you can now view and sort our Reviews page by additional metrics, including the long-requested Score field. Instead of clicking the column headers, there are some new menus. Just pick your sorting metric, hit Search, and the list will be sorted accordingly. We also know the old method — even the columns you COULD sort by — did not work on mobile devices, but this new system does.

The Long Version follows…

I know many of you have been asking for this for awhile, so I’m pleased we were able to make it happen! One of the biggest things that prevented us from delivering this was our DLC reviews; years ago, we instituted an alternate scoring platform for DLC. At the time, it made sense; most of our sub-scores like graphics, sound, etc. were unlikely to vary much from the base game, and when it comes to DLC, we thought it was more important to offer a simple verdict of whether or not the DLC was worth the investment or not, or if it was only for the truly dedicated fans. This three-point system made it easy to score DLC… and completely got in the way in 2020 when we rebuilt the site and were able to offer a single, sortable, searchable reviews page. After all, in a huge table of 2800 reviews where all but about 70 items have a numeric score, how do you work a 😃 into such a thing?

It went from one of those “we can’t have this at launch, but maybe later” items. Thankfully, reviews manager Jono Logan and I decided to resolve this the only logical way — by dropping the three-tier system and converting all DLC reviews to use our standard score system. We devised a general correlation between 😃, 😐, and 🙁 and our standard scores, and asked all current editors to assign numbers for their own reviews. We used our guidelines to adjust older reviews for former staff, with adjustments as needed (for instance, if someone really liked a piece of DLC that would generally score 80s, but the story element was lacking, that one score would be lower).

All of this is way too much information for you, I know — but I always prefer to explain what we did so you have an idea of what goes into things like this at RPGFan, and why some things take longer than you (or we) would sometimes like.

But I’m very pleased we were able to find a solution here! New search options are good for everyone, and consolidating scoring systems makes things simpler for our writers, too.

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Mike Salbato

Mike Salbato

Mike has been with RPGFan nearly since its inception, and in that time has worn a surprising number of hats for someone who doesn't own a hatstand. Today he attempts to balance his Creative Director role with his Editor-in-Chief status. Despite the amount of coffee in his veins, he bleeds emerald green.

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