You may have seen some changes happening over the past few months as we prepare to transition the project to its next stage in life. It can be hard accepting changes especially when you've been using the same setup for the past 5 years, but we can't cling onto the past forever if we expect to move forward.
So what is happening to this site? Well, the original plan was to move to a somewhat more simple platform maintained by the development team and contributors, where it would be mostly standalone with minimal resources necessary to maintain it, but that hasn't worked out exactly as planned.
Soon™, OxideMod.org and Oxide itself will soon become uMod, with everything moving to our custom platform at uMod.org along with a different GitHub (or GitLab) account; and yes, the new site will have all of essential features that OxideMod.org currently has for keeping up with updates and changes. OxideMod.org will remain open and available during the transition up until the public launch and general availability of the new site.
We will be having a few "preview" periods for the new site spread across the next few months. Here's a rough estimate of when the preview periods are planned for right now:
The project itself will be renamed to better reflect what the project's goal is (being a universal modding platform supporting multiple games.) It is also going to have a lot of work done under the hood to cleanup, improve on, fix issues, and to make it more consistent and universal across the games we support. I know you've grown to be attached to the Oxide name, but it's tightly bound to Rust, and we're trying to push it to become more than just "the mod for Rust" and try to get the platform up to par where it can be easily implemented into any game either by us or by a game's developer.
- July 1st, 2018 -- "alpha" test begins at preview.umod.org, limited access, invite-only
- August 1st, 2018 -- "beta" test begins at preview.umod.org, more access, marketplace open
- October 1st, 2018 -- public preview at preview.umod.org and open access for all
- Late 2018 - Early 2019 -- public launch at umod.org and grand opening
So what is the new site going to be? Hopefully a lot of useful improvements and less headaches! We've heard and seen the desire of an official marketplace for premium plugins, and we know that developers would love a way to offset their time spent making all the neat plugins that server owners utilize on a daily basis. So, a marketplace will be one of the main features coming to the new site, complete with options for developers to protect their work and various methods of distribution.
While I'm sure there will always be room for improvements, we've put a lot of work into making sure the platform is secure to avoid abuse. We're hoping the new site will help provide developers the tools they need to protect and distribute their work as well as better incentive to stick around and keep motivated. Free is always great, but developers need to eat too! There will be some qualifications in order for developers to sell their work though, which we'll touch on that when the site's first preview opens up.
With the new site also comes a CI (build and test server) setup to help developers and submission reviewers an easier way to see issues with their plugins. This will help with the migration process to find any potential issues from changes or just old code that should have been updated ages ago. Hopefully this process fixes and resolves a lot of the open issues users are having with some plugins.
We've also been gradually moving plugins (mainly unmaintained ones) to uMod.org and fixing any issues along the way; which hasn't been the easiest to keep up with. This process will hopefully be mostly automated with the newer version of uMod.org that we've been working with an importer to migrate any plugins you may have here at OxideMod.org to the new site. Developers will have the option to host their plugins directly on the site or via GitHub or GitLab with full control over their updates and releases.
The older site currently on uMod.org will go the way of the dodo, which we're currently redirecting forums.umod.org back to the Plugin Support section here until the new version of uMod.org is readily available and open.
Hosting your server with a provider? We'll be reaching out to various providers to offer support to integrate and benefit from our new services with their hosting platforms. We want to make sure you benefit fully from the features and offerings provided by uMod and the community of developers.
Here's a little summary of a few of the key features that the new site does and will provide:
There are a lot of other ideas and plans that are up in the air right now as they depend on having the manpower to help develop or complete them; such as the uMod Agent (self-patching and installer), uMod Native (support for C++ games, ie. Unreal games), and more. Most are already started, they just need someone able and willing to see them to completion. So if you happen to know any talented individuals that are familiar with API designing, IL patching, deobfuscation, and/or C++, send them our way!
- Marketplace for premium plugins, extensions, and tools; with optional protection methods, licensing options, and direct or remote distribution options for marketplace developers to utilize
- Integrated downloading, installation, and updating of plugins and extensions on your game server
- CI server and frontend for building and testing all plugins, extensions, and tools; and their updates
- Inspection via CI server for finding and notifying about any potential issues with plugins
- Site and email notifications of all updates, messaging, and account-related actions
- Integrated support and ticking system for general support, discussion, and issues
- Vastly improved and easier plugin/extension/tool submission process
- Overhauled and improved API documentation and tutorials
We've also been teaming up with some talented individuals from the community to help offset the workload with development of the projects and/or moderation of the community. You've probably seen a few of them around the community here and there: @Calytic, @CatMeat, @LaserHydra, @Jake Rich, and @TheGreatJ are the newest recruits.
Aside from that, we'll try to keep everyone updated as able going forward. We've got a lot of great stuff on the way! If you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, just let us know!