OngoingWorlds blog

News & articles about play-by-post games, for roleplayers & writers


Ordering the games on the games page

So I’ve been working today on the “Games” page. This will be a page accessible to all users that lists all of the games on the site so far. This can be where users can browse, to see if a game interests them.

I’m displaying the game title, as well as a thumbnail of the profile image you can upload for the game. Other useful information I thought people would want to know initially is how many members the game has, and how many characters it has.
I also think what is most important is that a user can tell how long it has been since the last post, which is why I have included a link to the two most recent posts, and specified the dates they were posted. This way, a user will not try and subscribe to a game which hasn’t had a post in five years.

See the screenshot below (remember this is still in development and the colours/layout will change significantly when the site is launched!).


Game list page (in development)

The "Games" page. This lists all PBEM/PBP games on the site


I also think the order of this list is important. I’m hoping that there will potentially be hundreds of games created on this website, and a lot of these games will become abandoned over time or come to a natural end. So I want to show the currently running games at the start of the list, so that users don’t have to scroll past these abandoned games. This annoys me about the way that orders their campaign list. They do it alphabetically, so the first page has games listed which haven’t had an update for months, or years.


Screenshot of campaign list

The campaign list on is listed alphabetically, which means you have to scroll through many games which haven't been updated recently


I also want to give the user to option of what to browse for. They already have a search box, to search the games list for words that are interesting to them. But this does require them to know what they’re looking for. Most people will just be browsing for games that take their interest.

Each of the games will have a category, so “scifi”, “Fantasy”, “Modern” etc, so you will be able to display games of only these categories. This will be done via a drop down menu, select your category and then click “go”.

I wanted to ask this question, what other criteria would you like to be able to search by? I was going to add an option so that you can reorder the list alphabetically if you’d like, but is there much point? If this is a feature that you think would be useful, please let me know. Alternatively I could add in the ability to reorder the list by least popular first. Again, would this be useful at all?