Ians Blog

First release of the topsite

October 10, 2019

Today is a big day for me, for the first time I’ve been able to release an application as open source, I’ve done bits and pieces in Open Source work but nothing as big as this.


It’s a good feeling being able to go on Github and tag a first release of something, today I got that honor and it feels great. I’ve finally made it from nothing to something in terms of building something open source.

One of my first projects on Github was a simple topsite script to show off what I knew, suffice to say it wasn’t a lot. But now I relive that but the difference being I did it not just for myself. We have a community over at PBBG, you can also visit the Discord, we are a community of developers and players that are based around Persistent Browser Based Games, or PBBG for short.

I started this as a community project, our first of many I hope. Though there was only one other contributor bar myself it still felt good, I hope others join in on the action in future.

What is it?

The topsite is an application to host a listing site, currently it’s heavily revolved around games, but I intend to generalise things more in the future in terms of naming. Anyhow, digressing. It’s basically a website in which you can list your game people can vote for it from within their own games and gain rewards through an incentive program.

The idea was to replace the older more defunct top-pbbg.com with something new and fresh, something easy to develop and maintain, and that mission has been accomplished!

There was a lot of technical debt with the old one, to the point where links were broken, no votes were coming in (plenty going out) and developing on it would be a nightmare. We chose Laravel as our base framework and stuck with good old blade templates instead of opting for Vue it meant faster development, and in reality we don’t need what Vue has to offer.

Now we have something stable to work from in the future.

What’s next?

Tests tests tests and refactoring. Version 1 has been a great start but it lacking a lot especially in… you guessed it the tests department. It has a basic test suite, but other than that it’s pretty useless.

There are certain parts that also need refactoring such as callbacks from votes in are synchronous when they should be outsourced to jobs. Generalising from Gaming to Listings more is also needed.

There are also a whole bunch of features that still need to be developed along with our own theme to make it more homely, but all in due time.


Thanks to WaveHack for his help and to Vince for letting me lead this on behalf of PBBG and all our contributors and thank you for reading

Ian Milliken

Written by Ian Milliken who builds games and apps somewhere in the world. You should follow him on Twitter