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Splore is already a fantastic feature of pico8 for discovering and sharing games, but now that we can run pico-8 in quite a few handheld devices (gameshell, tinypi, etc), I feel like there are some features that could improve the user experience greatly, so here's my wishlist of features I would like to see added, feel free to contribute!

  • Option for removing categories (jam,wip,search,local,etc):
    -- ideally this would be configurable in the config.txt file.
    -- even better if there was a somewhat hidden gui administrator of some sort.
  • Add optional "last played" and "most played" categories.
  • Reordering games in favorites.
  • Somehow allow searching using just the d-pad and buttons (actually works with gamepads, not some remapped keyboards, arcade cabs, gameshell).
  • Easy access to games from the same creator of the current cart (Included in 0.1.2, yay Zep!).
  • Slideshow/Screensaver option: take games from favorites, randomly launch them for a few seconds each, if there's any input go back to Splore.
  • Explicit download option for offline play.

That's all I have for now, might add to the list if I think of more.


Edit: IMO these features would also help greatly people installing pico8 games in arcade cabinets.

P#63314 2019-04-07 18:53 ( Edited 2019-05-01 23:03)


Text entry in the search already works with just the d-pad! :) Up/down select a letter and right/left move the cursor, kind of like an arcade high score name entry thing.

I agree access to an author's list of carts would be nice to have in splore; I've definitely wanted to do that before.

P#63315 2019-04-07 19:16

I second all those things...just having general data tracking/personalization within Splore would be great.

I know this probably qualifies "redoing the whole thing" but doing a whole game profile and author profile would be very nice and handy. Could have "Launch" a game and then also a "Details" that goes to author with "More from this author" type of deal.

I haven't used Splore in a while, so this might already be there, but I would notice that if you favorite a game, it was a bookmark for that specific version rather than the cart at large.

So if you favorite and then it updates, you have to favorite the new version and de-favorite the old version. Just grouping versions as a single game ID would be handy (if it's not already there).

Having a built-in gamepad identifier would be kinda of neat too. Just something that would show the d-pad and button feedback so you know how your gamepad is mapped.

P#63321 2019-04-07 20:40

@kittenm4ster: nice, I didn't know of that feature. I tried it with my arcade cabinet but the problem with it is that it remaps to keyboard commands so it doesn't work as a joystick... oh well! :)

@morningtoast: good ideas, toast!

P#63333 2019-04-08 15:21

@morningtoast bookmarks do persist when a cart is updated, as long as the author has used the "update cart" feature and replaced the old cart. at least that's what I think you're talking about.

P#63335 2019-04-08 16:40

@kittenm4ster: tried on my Gameshell to no avail. Likely the d-pad is seen as a regular keyboard :/

P#63391 2019-04-10 19:06

Adding to this thread, if there was a way to sync between carts I favorite/star online with favorited/starred carts in splore, that would be super cool.

At first glance, you would think that you would have to enter your username and password to get something like this to work, but there could be API keys to get around this. So you can manage your API keys through the website, then enter your API key in the config file (or in splore), then your activity online could be synced with your many local PICO-8 devices.

This would also be a major "redoing the system", but I wonder if something like this is already being done for the future high score feature.

P#63687 2019-04-19 14:21

Could there be a download (i.e. copy from cache to cart storage) option in the same places as the favourite option (i.e. cart list submenu, in-game pause menu)? The wiki (https://pico-8.fandom.com/wiki/Splore) recommends exiting to the console and 'save'ing, but this seems like too much work, and impossible without a keyboard (e.g. on the GameShell).

@guerragames speaking of the cart list submenu, there's an option there to search by cart author. Does that satisfy your 5th bullet point?

P#63939 2019-04-24 19:35

@chapterboom: yes! zep added that functionality not long ago, it's pretty cool.

@freds72: I'm with you, my arcade cabinet also maps to keyboard keys as well. It does work on my TinyPiPro tho.

Surprised nobody is seconding the "recently played" and "most played" lists idea as that one is somewhat common in emulation front-ends.

Actually, a bit related, I remember a recent tweet where zep was doing some analytics on pico8 games (# hits, # plays, etc). Would be cool if we had exposure to that as well at some point in the future.

P#63943 2019-04-24 19:48

Added to the list:

  • Slideshow/Screensaver option: take games from favorites, randomly launch them for a few seconds each, if there's any input go back to Splore.

Not a very critical feature but I thought it would be cute, especially in an arcade cab setting.

P#64130 2019-05-01 23:08

is there a way to search by tag?
also, pnp is not showing up for me at all

P#100279 2021-11-17 17:08

Those are great ideas.

I would love to have a collection of multiplayer games as well. Searching for "multiplayer" somehow does the trick, but a dedicated category would be nice.

@alanxoc3, a sync between devices would be totally awesome!

P#100316 2021-11-18 06:57

Splore works great with an Anbernic RG315V handheld running EmuELEC, but a save feature would be great. I don't know how feasible this would be, since carts handle the saves in various ways, right? For example, Islander uses some kind of clipboard save string. Sorry if this has been discussed before, I'm a relative newcomer to Pico-8.

P#100320 2021-11-18 08:31

To add to SPLORE I'd like to see a new category, Type. Is the game a shooter, racer, fighter, battler, RPG, tactical, puzzle, match-3, simulator, zen, tower defense, survival horror, etc.

It could be a 32- or 64-char. field that every cart-developer can enter a name in and can be sorted/searched for, understanding that their cart has a greater chance of being seen if they use keywords like:

shooter, topview
racer, 3D
puzzle, turn-based
RPG, action
puzzle, match-3
adventure, action, survival-horror
RPG, turn-based, playing-cards

Star for @guerragames as this as theirs is good request !

P#100351 2021-11-18 17:54 ( Edited 2021-11-18 17:55)

vehka: games that save to clipboard like Islander are the exception, because they need lots of data. Most games use the PICO-8 normal save system, which is 64 slots per game to store numbers. That’s good enough to save RPG inventory, or which levels are unlocked in a puzzle game, etc. Some games even have password system like early NES games had.

(This is not the same discussion as adding an option to save BBS carts to local carts directory :)

P#100354 2021-11-18 18:56

merwok: I see, thanks for setting me right!

P#100402 2021-11-19 08:41

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