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moho_00 Curator Backer Posts: 6262 Registered: 6/10/2011
# 1 - Posted on 8/3/2018 17:23:29

Would you use goal templates?
Total Votes: 0

Hey everyone, we've had playthrough goals for a while now and when they were first implemented, we considered the idea of having "shared" goals. The idea here is if I enter a list of goals for Super Mario Bros. and someone else starts a playthrough for the same game, they could be given the option of loading in the goals I had used.

At the time, we were still kinda figuring out how goals would work and they have certainly be refined over time, but I think we're to the point that we can revisit this conversation. The biggest challenge is that people are using goals in wildly different ways, which is AWESOME, but also makes it a little tricky to have a centralized system. Ultimately, each playthrough is your own and you should be able to run it the way you want to and I certainly don't want Completionator to force you into a particular set of goals.

So anyways, my thinking here is that we introduce goal "templates". A template would be comprised of a set of goals for a particular game, some of which may also include groups. These templates would be curated, meaning you couldn't just poach someone else's goal list willy-nilly, but rather you'd need to select from a previously "approved" list. This curation process would be different from how we handle game data and I'm not sure the exact mechanics of it, but just know there would be some way of "approving" templates for wide consumption. This could be as simple as having a forum / thread where everyone could volunteer for certain games or it might be some sort of feature I'll need to build.

We could keep templates limited to one per game or introduce the idea of a template type, meaning what type of goals are contained within / what type of playthrough you want to start. These types would be essentially the primary ways that everyone is tracking their goals, for example (keep in mind these are very simplified examples and more discussion would be needed):

  • Standard playthrough (i.e. finish all of the required levels in a game)
  • Full playthrough (i.e. finish all of the required AND optional levels in a game)
  • Achievements-driven (i.e. one goal for every achievement / trophy in the game)

If you were to use a template on a playthrough, it would simply auto-create the goals / groups as defined by the template. From that point forward, you could add / remove / rename / reorder the goals to your liking. They would simply be a starting point for you to run with. You could re-import the template (or a different one, if we have multiple templates per game), but it would need to remove any existing goals on that particular playthrough that you might have.

So with all that being said, if we had some sort of templating system, do you think you would use it? Or do you prefer to figure them out on your own?

Nonemployee Curator Posts: 63 Registered: 9/23/2016
# 2 - Posted on 8/3/2018 17:44:36

Considering how many times I replay games (looking at you, Mega Man X) this would be very useful. I could definitely try to add templates if possible if this was implemented.

Although I wonder, should we also have a template type for "spoilers" and "no spoilers?"

dhobo Curator Backer Posts: 1922 Registered: 1/5/2015
# 3 - Posted on 8/3/2018 19:22:25

I think due to the very broad nature of what people consider spoilers, the whole concept would have to be done with a huge spoiler warning if you decide to opt in to one (or more) of these lists.

For instance, something like FF1 as an example you could write the very first required story encounter goal as:

  • Knock Garland Down (spoiler)
  • Rescue the Princess (slightly less spoilery? or more spoilery depending on how you look at it)
  • King of Corneria's first request fulfilled (kind of a wordy roundabout way to describe it I guess.)
  • Beat Boss #1 (least spoilery.... or is it?)

The problem with a numbered list like that is that you're going to have boss #1, boss #2, etc... down the line and inherently have people know that there are 25 bosses in the game. Never mind the issue of ambiguity of labeling something as a "boss" as there are plenty of mini-bosses along the way. No one will know if the Vampire in the earth cave was supposed to be boss #4 or if that's the Lich. Does the 9x pirate fight to get the ship count as a boss? etc...

So I suggest all the lists ought to be considered full spoilers right out of the gate to play it safe. Also cuts down on the work required as there will only be one set of goals to curate instead of the possibility of two lists.

Nonemployee Curator Posts: 63 Registered: 9/23/2016
# 4 - Posted on 8/3/2018 21:38:02

I agree. To my knowledge, most people that use goals have to look at spoilers anyway to know what to add for goals. So a warning would be useful.

Marcelloz Curator Backer Posts: 278 Registered: 9/14/2014
# 5 - Posted on 8/4/2018 19:33:54

Template types sounds like a great idea. Perhaps use some standard types like 'walkthrough', ' achievements', 'bosses' or something like that. Description should be mandatory to indicate what kind of list it is.
A spoiler alert before selecting a template sounds like the best option .

All in all it sounds like a great addition and i'll be happy to add my 'templates'.

moho_00 Curator Backer Posts: 6262 Registered: 6/10/2011
# 6 - Posted on 8/10/2018 13:49:01

Ah, I forgot to include my thoughts on spoilers in my initial post! I think as long as the lists are curated, we might be able to come up with spoiler-free names, but if that's not feasible (as @dhobo has brought forth numerous examples), then I think adding a spoiler flag on each template might work. If we have multiple templates per game (to accommodate standard, achievement-based, etc playthroughs), then each template would be marked as having / not having spoilers. It gets a little messy in defining what's a spoiler though, again, as @dhobo alluded to. For example, lots of games have level names and for me, I typically have goals like Completed Level 1 - "Level Name Goes Here". But sometimes level names can be spoiler-y, especially when they have specific / important location / character names in them. I think we'll just have to use our best judgement and err on the side of caution by marking this as having spoilers or just make it implied across the board as @dhobo suggested, which ultimately makes my life easier

The way I see this working is when you're on the Playthrough Search page, you already have the Edit Groups and Edit Goals buttons, but there would be a new button called "Import Goals". Clicking this button would open a new modal that lists out the templates available for the game. By default, you would just see the type of template (if we have those), a spoiler indicator, who supplied the template, and how many goals it has. Within the modal, you would be able to drill into the template to view the goals it contains, but since the spoiler icon would be visible prior to this, you would be doing so at your own risk. Each template would have a button or something to select it and upon clicking it, the modal would close, any existing goals / groups on the playthrough would be removed, and the template goals / groups would be added.

At this point, it's as if you had manually entered the goals / groups and you can edit them to your liking. You would be able to import at any time and as many times as you'd like.

I think the big unknown for me is how we collect the template data. For those that are interested in contributing templates, do you see yourself coming up with templates for random games even if you're not playing them or just submitting them as you come up with them for your own playthroughs?

Marcelloz Curator Backer Posts: 278 Registered: 9/14/2014
# 7 - Posted on 8/10/2018 14:52:58

Good thoughts about spoilers and selecting templates, like it the way you describe it.
As for submitting, I think just a 'submit goals as template' option for everybody would be best. Personally I don't think I'll submit templates for games I won't play.
For games I played, play or want to play and have goal lists, I will of course.

[sidenote: I already mentioned this in another thread, more filter options for playthroughs would be nice :)]

moho_00 Curator Backer Posts: 6262 Registered: 6/10/2011
# 8 - Posted on 8/10/2018 20:10:08

I'm glad you mentioned the playthrough feedback! I had forgotten about our discussion from a while back. I had the "on hold" flag on my task list....or at least one of them Since my list is so large, I've tried working from a "DO THIS STUFF RIGHT NOW" kinda list and it was not on that one, so it slipped off my radar. But not anymore! I completed the playthrough "on hold" functionality and it will go out with the next release!

Post Edited on 8/10/2018 20:10:27
moho_00 Curator Backer Posts: 6262 Registered: 6/10/2011
# 9 - Posted on 8/11/2018 14:52:24

Based on the poll results, it sounds like this would be a useful feature, so I've started working on it! Here's a work-in-progress screenshot:

I've propped up the main infrastructure for the templates, but obviously it might need to be tweaked as we finalize how to handle spoilers and some of the other feedback. The next steps for this are:

  • Allow the goals to be viewable within the modal you see in the screenshot
  • Wire up the Import button to actually import the goals / groups
  • Put a message somewhere on the modal to remind users that any existing goals on the playthrough will be removed
  • Work through spoilers / other feedback
Post Edited on 8/11/2018 14:56:14
Ardraaken Posts: 10 Registered: 4/21/2017
# 10 - Posted on 8/29/2018 22:29:14

Probably a little late to the party but I started using goals based on game achievements/trophies rather than progression. What put me off using the too much was the faff of getting them into my list and formatted correctly (I was doing a copy/paste from somewhere like (as that's my main system). Not sure where they pull the data from but it would be good to have this as an option (possibly)

elko84 Curator Backer Posts: 368 Registered: 5/6/2017
# 11 - Posted on 10/11/2018 22:06:20

I like this idea. The issue of spoilers is something that needs to be thought through. But the more generic the templates are (Complete Chapter 1, etc.) the easier they would be to use. I've started adding goals to my playthroughs as I feel its gives me more of a feeling of progress being made.

moho_00 Curator Backer Posts: 6262 Registered: 6/10/2011
# 12 - Posted on 8/2/2019 14:46:07

Oh hey, remember this!? This feature has actually been available for in pilot mode (for Patreon backers) for nearly a year now. The main hold-up for launching it to the masses is that I haven't quite figured out how to curate the data for these lists. I also don't have a UI for maintaining them at the moment, so I'm the only one that can manage the data currently. But this is something I would love to get cleared off my task list. I thought I would poll the community here to see what sort of interest there is out there for helping out on creating / maintaining goal templates. So...anyone interested?

warringshogun Curator Backer Posts: 76 Registered: 4/10/2019
# 13 - Posted on 8/5/2019 12:29:10

I'm definitely interested. I really like to have goals for my playthroughs so I can see the progress I am making, especially with really long games. I tend to look at other people's playthroughs to see how they are approaching the game I am starting. I often will use that to plan my playthrough.

My idea for this would be you could use someone else's goals as your own template, then modify it and resubmit it with your completion. If your completion's goals keeps getting used, it should be moved to be higher up on the list where you are able to select which completion you want to base your playthrough on (so upvoting or most popular). I definitely see some potential issues with this - like avoiding spoilers within goals or maybe it's a brand new game and you want to copy someone else's playthrough (which isn't a completion yet).

So here would be the basic flow:
1. I go to add a new playthrough, and select to import goals. (I think it would also be nice to be able to do this when you are creating the playthrough, not just after you have already created it)
2. I can then see the most popular goals populated from completions. I select the one I want, and the goals are brought in. (This also upvotes that same completion's goals template I chose).
3. Then when I complete the playthrough, I check a box that says something like "make my goals available as a template" and then my goals are added to the list of available goal templates. We could warn about posting spoilers here or allow for spoiler tagging. The biggest issue would probably be how do you determine if your goals are different enough (if you edited them) from the original to count as a new template.

So to answer your question: I think we could curate by upvoting. A goals template could also be downvoted for spoilers (if we don't have a way another way to deal with this).

Side Note: I also wish there was a way to see your goals on a completion. I have to edit my playthrough notes and add that I beat optional bosses, etc, instead of just being able to see that. It would be great to view a completion and have my goal data available, at least privately to me.

Anyway, this is what I would love to see, but I totally understand if this is too much work and/or not valuable to the community. Let me know what you think! I am also open to helping with whatever direction you go, just hit me up on Discord.

Post Edited on 8/5/2019 15:02:38
moho_00 Curator Backer Posts: 6262 Registered: 6/10/2011
# 14 - Posted on 12/25/2020 15:57:02

It's me again! After a long period of silence on this feature, I'm happy to announce it's now available to everyone! Starting today you should see a new Import Goals button on the Goals tab of an individual playthrough. The button is only enabled if there are actually templates for the game and at the moment, we only have 80 or so games with templates. For now, goal templates must be entered by curators, though this may change over time. I'm not sure if anyone out there would be interested in creating templates, but if are, feel free to reach out.

I do plan on integrating this new feature throughout the site, such as on the new Playlist page, but I at least wanted to get it out the door before 2020 came to a close.

merph518 Curator Posts: 192 Registered: 4/21/2017
# 15 - Posted on 3/21/2021 15:04:35

Late to the party here, but one goal-related feature I would like is the ability to copy another user's goals for a game into my playthrough. Often a friend of mine will offer up the fact that they've already set up goals if I wanted to copy/paste them, but having a direct copy feature would be super nice.

Marcelloz Curator Backer Posts: 278 Registered: 9/14/2014
# 16 - Posted on 3/28/2021 6:55:18

Thanks for adding this great feature!

Avium Curator Posts: 44 Registered: 10/14/2017
# 17 - Posted on 4/18/2021 4:02:30

I'd be keen on curating some goals, it's probably my favourite feature and I'd love to add to it!

Hotshotz79 Posts: 71 Registered: 11/20/2018
# 18 - Posted on 5/21/2021 17:34:08

I just found out this feature and its awesome.


So I added Star Wars: Squadrons under Playthrough and clicked on Import Goals, it showed elko84 created them

but Importing those goals go under [No Group Assigned]
If i create a Group before Importing, then the Import Goal is greyed out

Is there a solution how to get those goals in a Group? (instead of manually dragging all 16 goals one at a time)

GospelEXE Backer Posts: 23 Registered: 4/24/2017
# 19 - Posted on 1/24/2022 21:46:37

Hi Moho,

Great job implementing this and thank you for doing so! There are some goals for some games that I would like to contribute to the community, but to one of your previous posts, it seems that only Curators can implement that.

Is there a source or thread where the community can suggest adding templates based on our playthroughs to the website?

moho_00 Curator Backer Posts: 6262 Registered: 6/10/2011
# 20 - Posted on 1/28/2022 21:47:32

We don't have an "official" way of suggesting templates, but this thread has been used in the past:

GospelEXE Backer Posts: 23 Registered: 4/24/2017
# 21 - Posted on 2/3/2022 5:48:04

I may end up using that. Thank you!