The Def Guide to Zzap!64

The Zzap Rrap

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2007 1:25 pm 
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Iain wrote:

Fab wrote:
The static per-issue pages, which look very outdated and are full of broken links, could be merged into the revamped scan section.


With the thumbnail images? What broken links, can you give me a link of an example? Thanks


Not as many broken links as I remembered. Apologies. But many "Editorial" links (virtually all from issue 53 on) point to http://zzap64.co.uk/editorials.html#<issue> instead of the correct one http://zzap64.co.uk/zzaped<year>.html#<issue> . To be fair, http://zzap64.co.uk/editorials.html does exist, only the user must click again on the correct year to find the editorial.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:32 am 
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Em 2 years have passed, but there are movements afoot!

The 25th Birthday of Zzap is coming up in April 2010 so that's given me a deadline / goal to reach for.

I've gotten a white board in my new study and it's full of database diagrams and the like!

The first thing that I need to redesign a bit is the Zzap Bible. I realised that if I was tagging games in the new scan section, I'd really be tagging reviews and some people might tag the full price review, others might tag the budget version etc. and as it stands there's no way to logically link up a full price or budget review of the same game so it all seemed a bit messy.

So after a few days of braining storming I've come up with another way of doing it. Going to get rather technical here, as I'm half just writing it down to make sure it all makes sense. Anybody with comments etc. feel free to jump in!

Before there was just a Zzap Bible table that listed all the game reviews as can be seen on the ZzapBible page

Now I'm going to create two new tables. A Games table and a lookup table as a go between the Games and Zzap Bible table.

The Game table will basically just be an ID, a Title and maybe a Lemon64 link (to see more details on the game)

The lookup table will be an ID, ReviewID, Game ID and Release Type (full price, budget, Compilation etc.)

Basically this will mean, that game tags in scan pages will be tagging a game in the new Game table so they will be all consistent and because the games and reviews are tied together, I'll be able to list all reviews for a certain game (not just a loose text search), adverts and tips for a certain game etc. etc.

I could just put the new Game ID in the Zzap Bible table, but that won't allow for the cases were there might be more than one review of a certain release of a game, e.g. a budget version review and also a budget version review in a genre roundup. It also wouldn't really allow for tying single games to a compilation review, which the new system will.

Hopefully I'm not over engineering here but I want to develop a system that is very powerful and easily allows getting related info on a specific game, designed from the ground up rather than hacked together bit by bit.

I want people when on a scan page to click a tag for a game and be brought to a page that lists all review links for that game, all adverts for that game and other pages / articles were it's mentioned.

Of course it does mean that I have to go through all the issues and touch up the Zzap Bible and add unique games into this new game Table and for each review, add at least one row into the lookup / inbetween table.

There's 2278 reviews in the Zzap Bible so I'm guessing maybe 1500 unique games.. :-o and since I'm adding in compilation and round up reviews, that'll increase things a bit as well.

I'd better get cracking! and hope I don't realise I need to redesign things half way through! :-D


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2009 8:08 pm 
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Iain wrote:
...there are movements afoot!

The 25th Birthday of Zzap is coming up in April 2010 so that's given me a deadline / goal to reach for.

Cool! I'll rub my hands for the next few months in anticipation...

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 1:26 pm 
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Going through the Zzapbible and including all reviews of games, e.g compilations, round-ups etc. is taking a bit longer than I thought. Only on issue 35 at the moment and my downloading and playing of Settlers II over the past week or two hasn't helped!!

So I think I'll set the new Zzapbible info and page as the target for 11th April and work on the new scan section after that. I'm not going to get both done before then anyway.

Things will be busy after the middle of April with baby Zzap arriving on the scene but work will continue.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 6:22 pm 
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Can I suggest Bob Gary Julian Ciaran Gordon Stuart Steve James as a name for the forthcoming sprog? :wink:

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 6:25 pm 
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Professor Brian Strain wrote:
Can I suggest Bob Gary Julian Ciaran Gordon Stuart Steve James as a name for the forthcoming sprog? :wink:


Can you imagine the wrist sprain of the poor child with a name that long!

I think "Zzap" is much better x-)


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 10:40 pm 
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Oh come on, we all know it must be Lloyd. Or...Kati. ;)

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 13, 2010 8:14 pm 
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As the admin of Retromags.com, I know exactly how you feel. Its hard to get motivated sometimes.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:45 am 
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phillyman wrote:
As the admin of Retromags.com, I know exactly how you feel. Its hard to get motivated sometimes.


Welcome! Motivation can be a problem definitely and I've gone years with little or no motivation for doing anything on the site or the task just seems too big to get started, but I actually have some motivation at the moment, although other people's buzz seems to have reduced over the years, which is perfectly natural.

Pity someone in our peer group can't win the Lotto and pay us a wage to do all this preservation work ;-) Although then it just might turn into a monotonous boring job!

Sorry to read that your host told you to take down the downloads, was the amount of traffic used that alerted them to your site in the first place?


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 3:48 pm 
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For those of you not following on Twitter (or reading the bottom of the main forum page) work is continuing on the ZzapBible V2.

Issues 1-60 are now done.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:59 am 
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It's been almost 2 years since I've had a chance to add anymore updates to ZzapBible V2 but I have resumed the work, starting a couple of days ago. :)

Issues 68 and 69 are now done. Follow ZzapRrap on Twitter for more frequent updates.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:18 am 
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Well done, that man!


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 6:54 pm 
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Good work sir!


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 11:47 pm 
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Ta ta!

I have a monitor under the kitchen table that can be set up quickly and used to display the scans, while I use my laptop to enter the data into the various database tables, so hopefully to get through a couple of issues at least, a week, although it'll slow right down when I get to those round-ups with piles of games in them.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:28 pm 
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Well, if you have been following the Twitter thread or actually on Twitter, you'll know that I have gotten to issue 106 at last and have decided to add the fan issue 107 and Def Tribute as well.

They don't quite fit since a reviewer on those issues isn't really the same as an employed reviewer for Zzap or C= Force but I think it's good to have the extra game etc. data from those issues.

There's also the issue with most of those "new" games actually being PD. I generally (as far as I remember) don't add any PD games to the ZzapBible and Zzap didn't review any until near the end when there was a couple of PD tape compilations (but only a small percentage of the games on them were even reviewed), but I have decided to add a new game type of "Public Domain" to include most of the games from issue 107 and I may go back over the old issues (just PD sections) and see if there's anything to add in there. Those PD compilations still stay out though since it seems silly to only be able to add half or less of a compilation.

Ah data, I can't get enough of it x-)


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