2021-09-29 Relaunch of the entire Site
It has been long time since the last update, and that was mainly because maintaining the old site had become complicated as it required constant programming and every bit of content had to be either manually fed into a database or hardcoded in HTML. Plus there was about a few hundred pages of text to be published and it would have been really cumbersome to edit them all manually.
So I decided to take one big step into the future and deploy a state-of-the-art content management system to finally make creating content more easy. The new site now runs with Contao-CMS and I can safely say that it is a very complex system with lots of possibilities and that I'm not even close to unleashing its full potential. But it has now become a lot easier for me to add content and expand the site so I am very happy to present the relaunched "Magic Realm of the Dark Sphinx".
Please note, that due to limited time there is only a German version of the site for launch with the English version coming later this year, hopefully also with a bit more content than before. Until that happens, the old site will still be available here: http://oldrealm.thesphinx.de
Old Update History
2019-09-23 Still alive and busy
Yes, it's been half a year since my last update and this half year was very intense, stressful and full of events - both in real life and in our games. It will probably still take me a while to get everything ready for publishing, but I wanted to let you know that I'm still here and doing a few things.
Today I updated a few of my Star Wars character pages (Shi, Reena and Ki'Sha) as well as the Adventure-section starter page. Keep posted for more updates as soon as I can get them done.
2019-03-22 More Star Wars Content
Today I uploaded a new version of the introduction to the Star Wars roleplaying game, divided into 3 seperate pages: introduction to the Star Wars RPG in general, an overview of the Star Wars d6 RPG system and a guide for new Players how to pick their first character in a Star Wars RPG.
I also expanded the Star Wars adventures section with a new report about the "Underworld Legacy" campaign. More material will follow when ready.
All of this content is still German only, as I have not yet had the time to create an appropriate English translation. It is still in the works, so stay tuned.
2019-02-11 Technical Update
Today I made all necessary adjustments to upgrade the PHP to a current version.
After several tests it seems that everything went fine and so the codebase is good for some time now.
2019-01-28 Star Wars updates
Lots of new stuff for the Star Wars Roleplaying Game and some minor corrections of old material.
I corrected several character sheets for Star Wars characters, and some other related pages. Some had wrong stats, some had old or not so great pictures that were removed, some had typos and so on.
But in return I uploaded new character pictures by artist Maike Gerstenkorn, making my Star Wars character gallery now complete with at least one picture for each character. I also included a short story describing the origins of Ki'Sha.
Then I added lots of stuff to the adventure section of Star Wars RPG: New starship charts for the battles in "Dark Trooper Campaign" and "Shadow Invasion Campaign", as well as a set of PDFs with house rules for capital starship battles.
Last, but not least, I uploaded a campaign report of my very first Star Wars RPG-campaign "Relikte der Sith". Please enjoy!
2018-11-18 New Content Update
I managed to get some more content ready for an update:
First, there's new RPG-character pictures of my Star Wars characters drawn by two talented young artists. If you like their artwork you can find the links to their webpages in the Links-section.
Second, there's a new campaign-report up in the adventures-section covering the whole 1-year Star Wars campaign "Shadow Invasion" that ran from October 2017 to October 2018. This report is only in German as of now, but I am already working on translations to these reports and important stories.
So, please enjoy this update and be sure to check back soon.
2018-10-06 New content for Star Wars RPG
Today we have two important content updates:
1. I am happy to add new character pictures to some of my Star Wars character sheets, drawn by a professional artist: Maike Gerstenkorn.
2. Finally I am able to release the first packet of Information regarding my 5-year Star Wars RPG campaign called "Dark Trooper Campaign", als well as it's successor "Dark Aftermath". If you're fluent in German, please enjoy.
For all English-speaking visitors, don't be disappointed! I will release most of that content in English as well. Some of it has already been translated and is currently undergoing some lecture. It may still take some time to finish, but it's definitely going to happen.
2018-10-05 Relocated Menu Structure
Today I relocated the whole menu structure from the bottom main menu and the right side secondary menu to the left. When I designed the original website back in 2002-2004 it seemed like a neat idea to have everything different from the standard.
Over time I had gotten some feedback from people who struggled with this kind of "Innovation" and it really proved to be bad usability.
So, I decided to move everything to the left where one would naturally expect the navigation to be. I also cleaned out the non-working items from the main menu to give it a fresh and functional appearance. Everything else should work as before, including the switching between the two languages.
Known issues: When first visiting the new version of the site be sure to clear your browser cache. Otherwise some old scripts might still be stuck in there and lead you to "interesting" navigation problems.
There's also a little bug when switching languages that the main menu seems to switch back to the starting position while the secondary menu stays in the current section. I know of this, but I will probably not fix it anytime soon, since it does not obstruct the functionality.
I am already working on a new menu system, but I still have a lot to learn and to think about, so this might take a while. Meanwhile, please enjoy the site with the "improved" old menu system.
Today I switched the picture/art galleries over to the lightbox-feature so the pictures will no longer open in separate browser tabs or windows, but instead pop up floating in front of the page.
I'm aware of an issue with this functionality in Firefox which causes pictures not to be scaled down so they might fill up the whole height of the screen. This leads to the bottom line of the pic with the "X" and the title text being "swallowed" by the navigation footer. Since I am planning to rework the entire menu structure with "current" technology I will not spend time on bugfixing this issue.
Btw, since someone mentioned it to me:
Right now, only the main section, the art gallery, the roleplaying-section and the links work from the main menu at the bottom. The library and anime-section have never been functional and the Egypt-section is on hold until further notice.
2018-09-19 New Picture Viewer Function
I was really unhappy with the functionality of viewing my pictures that would open up in a new window or tab. It was still better than opening the pic in the same window as the main site, but it still felt outdated.
I was looking for something a bit more up to date when a colleague told me about "Lightbox". I tried to implement the libraries and scripts and it's really simple, it works and it looks perfect. I'm totally happy now.
Started with the roleplaying pictures, but I will try to add it to the Gallery soon, too.
2018-09-17 New RPG-subpage: Star Wars Adventures
I decided to split up the technical and design-oriented upgrade of the site from the content, so I could continue putting up new content without waiting for the new tech to be implemented.
Therefore I created a new subsection in the (German version of the) Star Wars RPG-menu: "Abenteuer"
There I will feature an overview of my campaigns and settings, complete with as many information, reports, short stories, drawings, maps and other stuff as I can put together. This will also grow over time, so if you like to read more about our Star Wars RPG-campaigns be sure to check back some time later.
2018-09-09 New RPG-characters
After resurrecting the site itself I also updated all characters and uploaded new ones that were created after the Website went into oblivion.
2018-09-01 Restoration of the old site
I managed to save some time to finally revive the old site. I made a completely new database and populated it with the tiny bits of Information that I had saved from the previous one. The rest is made up brand new.
There's still a lot of work to do, but it's finally getting started.
Please note that the News-section will be discontinued as of now. I don't want to write twice about the same updates or features I'll be doing.
Notiz für deutschsprachige Nutzer:
Um mir unnötige Arbeit zu ersparen, werde ich zukünftig keine separaten News mehr pflegen und die Updates auch ausschließlich auf Englisch. Das betrifft natürlich nicht den Inhalt der Site an sich.
2013-06-30 Shutdown of Database
On this date the old database went out of service and the provider shut it down. Due to personal issues at that time I forgot to make a copy of it and so I lost all content.
Since I thought I lost everything I had no motivation to go through all the mess again with rebuilding it and it lay in waste for several years.
2010-01-06 Last update before hiatus
At this date I made the last update to this site before leaving it alone for a very Long time.