JKHub turns 9 with a new theme, contest & more
That’s right, it’s been nine years since the Hub launched. Normally I would love to wait until the 10th year to make this big of a change, but I think this revamp is long overdue. Initially, when we announced JKHub 2.0, we planned for a redesign like this but life and complications get in the way. I’m sure most of you thought it would never come, or lost interest, but hopefully the wait was worth it.
This theme was originally designed by a designer named CodeByte, so all respect and gratitude goes to them. However, I’ve made a lot of special modifications myself. We still have our own identity, so anyone worried about JKHub using some random theme shared by various other sites out there: don’t worry.
I wanted to make the switch to a dark theme by default, which I know can be a bit divisive among people, so I also wanted to have a toggle to easily switch between dark and light themes, give everyone a choice. You can find it at the top next to the Create button.
The biggest change I wanted to make with this theme is to give the front page more relevant and appealing information. The slider will serve latest news items, similar to the JKHub bar. It breathes some life into the front page and gives a contact point for new visitors to visit either the Getting Started page or the latest news items. Since news is quite sparse in the JK community, I felt featuring it so prominently in the past was a bit tacky in the way we used to, and hoping this new page is much more inviting and appealing, especially for newcomers.
You may have noticed a few weeks ago that you suddenly gained some random achievements for seemingly no reason. That’s because it is a new feature that Invision introduced and I decided to enable it early to see how it would work. Luckily it counts everything that you have previously posted, so if you’ve been around for awhile, chances are you have a few badges and ranks already. The ultimate goal of this system is to give a small incentive to engage more with the forum and file community. You gain points by posting, submitting mods, liking, getting likes, etc.
The biggest benefit to this new system is that we can finally award contest winners with custom badges. All previous contest winners have proactively received a badge for the contest they won in the past. Each one is made custom to that specific contest by us, and will show as "rare" since only one person receives it. You can see an example on this profile.
Tutorial & Wiki relocation
Some may recall we used to have a dedicated tutorial system which was eventually deprecated from lack of development of the plugin we used. That forced us to convert them all into normal forum threads, which sufficed for getting the info out there for people to read. Now, with the newest software there is actually a good system built in that we also use for news posts called Databases. This is essentially a lightweight wiki-style system that we think will be perfect for tutorials to live, because it allows anyone to edit them (with approval of course) so we can ensure that our tutorials have the current and correct info, even if the original author hasn’t been seen in years.
That same system is where the wiki is also going to be moving to. The wiki has been the neglected child in the JKHub family. There is a lot of good content on there, but it’s not nearly as much as what could or should be. Two big barriers we notice people not bothering with it is that it requires a whole new and separate account to contribute to it, and it also requires learning of wiki markdown which can be confusing for people to learn. Our new system will be much more user-friendly, convenient, and integrated with the rest of JKHub as a whole, like search and content feeds.
I’m hoping this new system for the tutorials and the wiki will help put more of a focus on community-driven content, and not feel so out of reach to contribute to. Right now we are still in the process of moving things over. You may notice some tutorials have been moved and some haven't. The old ones are still accessible before they are moved. We are about halfway done, but due to the process, this will take awhile. I'm hoping to have them all moved over in the next 2 weeks or so. A full post will be made about it and how everyone can contribute and edit existing tutorials.
This is more of a "bonus" feature of this big update, but I thought it was a pretty cool addition. We now have a page that displays servers of the groups that partner with us as part of the JKHub Network. The network is just a simple way to collect the major and minor groups and communities around Jedi Outcast and Academy into one area to make it easy for newcomers and veterans to find them. If you have a community you want featured in our network, just let us know! We link to servers on the server page, and websites and Discord servers in the JKHub Bar. It’s great way to expose your clans or groups to new eyes.
Ported content policy
I’m sure y’all are tired of seeing this come up in these news posts, and I agree. However, effective immediately, we are returning to our previous policy regarding ported content. That means as follows:
Any content taken from a source outside of Jedi Outcast or Jedi Academy is considered "ported content" and is technically the legal property of the relevant copyright holder. This content is allowed in our file section with the stipulation that more than the bare minimum was done. Some kind of original work must be put into the mod.
An example of the bare minimum we would allow: a playermodel ported from Fortnite must be fully weighted to the JKA skeleton and work correctly in the game with NPC files, MP icons or SP menu support and sounds. Simply pasting it in Blender and exporting it to GLM may seem good, but then isn’t tested beyond the "it works!" factor and doesn’t actually work with animations properly or any way to actually use it outside of the /model command. If you use content you didn’t create, put as much effort into the experience as possible to show you also know what you’re doing.
This is a very subjective policy and each case will be very different. But we feel that enough ported content is being made outside our Files section that we would be shooting ourselves in the foot if we didn’t allow it in some capacity. Our outlook has always been to encourage creators to do as much work themselves as possible when it comes to mods. Copying someone else’s work is never as honorable as creating it yourself, however a lot of knowledge can be gained from using another’s work.
The biggest part of this policy is honesty. You have to list where your content comes from. This has always been our policy, even with other modders’ content, but is even more important with ported content. You did not create it, so please do not pretend you did. Be as explicit as possible with your sources. Also be aware that your ported mods will be subject to termination if we ever get contacted by copyright holders. Our latest file submission rules can always be found here.
You may have noticed that Caelum has left us again. You also may remember that he took over financial responsibility of JKHub for a few years, and we thank him greatly for that. However we are now back to operating all on our own again. This means we have costs again. Yay.
The request is always simple: we need money. This community has always been generous with donating towards a resource like JKHub over the years, and I don’t doubt you will show up again. If you are fortunate enough to have some extra cash and want to see this community continue and thrive, please consider donating.
I’ll be even more blunt than that. Our estimated yearly costs are around $400. We would love to get to that goal by December. Donors that donate over $20 USD will gain a special badge here on the website.
A full post will be dedicated to this soon, complete with the traditional progress bar to help illustrate our progress.
Part of the birthday celebration is a new contest! It’s not "birthday" themed necessarily, but we will be thrilled if you make any (
birthday cake thermal detonator mod when). The theme for this contest is called Summer Days, which is exactly what it sounds like. Summer themed mods are the goal here (sorry to those who live in the upside-down where it is not summer right now). I know this may seem a bit late, it's already nearly August, but that means we have 2 months left! Examples to help you out:
- swimming attire
- backyard barbecue
- sunny weather
rosh in a speedo
- ice cream
Of course the winner will be voted on by the community in a poll here, and will receive a badge on their profile showing they won, and added to the contest page. The mod will be a featured file across the site until the next contest.
- You can only enter your own creations.
- You may team up with another modder.
- Any external content you did not make must be explicitly referenced in the description and readme file.
- You may enter more than one file.
- You may enter files that were created previous to this contest, as long as they abide by the rules.
- Any content is welcome, including skins, models, maps, weapons, menu mods, etc. Just make sure it abides by the rules.
- Files can be for Jedi Academy and/or Jedi Outcast. We will assume files are for JKA unless specified otherwise.
- If a large number of mods are submitted, more than one winner may be chosen.
The deadline for submitting content is
September 12, 2021, September 14, after which a poll will be opened.
- The poll will be closed by the morning of September 20, 2021.
I'd also like to quickly point out that we are now moving contest submissions to their relative categories in the files area and instead use the tag system to organize them. You can see previous contest entries on this page. Entries are moved to their specific categories after the contest is over.
That was a lot of info to cover in one news post, so dedicated posts for a couple of these topics might be made, to feature them more heavily and gain more eyes on them and provide more details. A lot has been going on behind the scenes over these last few months and I'm really glad we can finally show some of it to y'all. I'm sure it feels very stagnant until now but hopefully some of these things will breathe some new life into this place. Let us know your thoughts and questions in the comments!
EDIT: We are also testing out language options for the website. Only interface items will be translated, and we still require all posted content to be in English where possible. Check out the language selector in the bottom left of the page and if we're missing your native language, let us know.