Posted by Charlie
UCP Launched in Beta, New Developers & General Update!
20th June 2018

Hello everybody, welcome to Bay Area Roleplay's new User Control Panel!

The UCP has been entirely rebuilt from scratch to improve user experience, more features and to be able to provide faster and improved administration services with our brand new Admin Control panel! I want to offer a big thank you to Bradley who designed the entire front end for both the main site and the Admin Control Panel - he's done a fantastic job and I'm very happy and thankful for what he has done for both me and the community. I still consider this launch to be a beta launch of the UCP, although the staff team have had access to it for around a month now, deploying it live to such a large audience is always going to bring up unexpected and quirky bugs that we failed to spot in testing, so bare with me whilst I work on everything!

Although I have left many features for general players out of the initial version I want to stress that they have not been neglected and will come as soon as I feel they are complete enough for the players. So, what is in the new UCP? Well, here is a generalized list of what the new UCP brings:

    - Entirely new design (thanks to Bradley!)
    - News feed so that we can keep you updated with IG events, changelogs & general updates
    - Notification system to make you aware of actions that have happened to your account (such as forgot password requests..)
    - Ability to change your email and passwords when logged in
    - Entirely new forgot password system that will notify admins when someone makes a request that you did not make
    - Added scrolling gallery banner (let me know if you have any cool pics that you'd like to see there!)
    - Added new faction center where faction members can keep up to activity with faction members, leaders can manage ranks and fire people from the UCP! (I have many plans for this area but let me know what you'd like to see here!)
    - Entirely new Admin Control Panel which allows us to speed up many administrative processes such as refunding and gives us better methods of detecting ban evaders etc.
    - Added tools for management to keep track of helper & admin activity

Although the feature set may be disappointing for some players initially please note that a lot of hard work and effort has been put into this and this version of the UCP has much more scalability than the previous one, meaning future updates will be much easier and quicker to implement. I aim to provide regular updates based on user feedback, so please do let me know what you would like to see from the UCP. The staff have had access to the new UCP for around a month now whilst I have been continuing to add features, and I can tell you that processes such as refunds, bans/unbans etc. have become a lot quicker to happen as a result of the new features that the new Admin Control Panel brings!

Just to let you in on a couple of things I have planned for the UCP:

    - Ability to change character's skin from the UCP
    - Ability to access more account information such as recent login information, admin record and detailed stats about your characters
    - Friends system
    - Comments system for the news feed (undecided on this at the moment, let me know if you really want it!)

Many of these things have been designed (thanks to Bradley!) and I have started to implement, so hopefully they won't be too far away!

Now, enough of the UCP! Time for some updates.

It's no secret that Bay Area Roleplay has been going through a rough patch recently and I know how tiresome and boring this is going to sound, but we are working on it. I promise. Today we welcome two fantastic developers to the team, St1ll3r as a third-party gamemode developer and J0sh ES who I personally know will be a very welcomed addition as main gamemode developer. With these new additions we should see many of the issues which have been known for a while fixed and fantastic and exciting new features that have been highly anticipated. So, welcome guys!

We are working hard to bring fantastic things to BARP and we want to set things right. It's long overdue, and as I've said in many forum posts already - we know we've made mistakes and we're sorry. We're going to set them right. Obviously this won't be an overnight thing and I am asking you to give us another chance, you don't even have to play right now. Just let us work this out, fix the bugs, provide the updates and come back and check us out if you really don't feel that you can play at the moment. I know back when the first iteration of BARP was conceived (not called BARP back then), myself and Rehasher had big visions and plans of what we wanted to create. Things over the past few months have slowed down a lot, and things didn't go as planned but we still have those unique ideas and now with a fantastic staff, admin & development team as well as a community that has some fantastic ideas we're going to make what we always wanted.

That's all I have to say for now, let me know if there are any bugs with the UCP that you find here - Please create the topic with the tag [UCP], just makes it easier for me to find them! Remember this version is still what I consider a beta, although we've been testing it throughout development we've not deployed it to such a large audience as will be visiting it so I am expecting things to go just a tiny tiny bit wrong, I hope you can understand!

Thank you for reading,

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