Help with building nakama console from source needed!

Good day!

I’m looking for a way to tune up nakama console a bit. The idea is to replace text json editor for some collections for something more comfortable and friendly to gamedesigners. After it, add lookup component for selecting/showing/filtering by title, by returning id to underlying json. For example, you have spells with id and title somewhere in the game model. And you’d like to add them to some of the items, you have in ur game. Then you have to address them by id, but that is not convenient. Implementing lookup in TS, that shows title, but returns id, I guess, could solve this one.

So, I’d really appreciate any help with building console from sources. Can you please help me with it?

And second question, I’ve seen a few topics saying, that you are looking toward extending or simplifiing nakama console. What are your current plans in this direction?

Hello @andrecrow, if you would like to make console improvements, please consider upstreaming them to Nakama OSS, contributions are very welcome.

The instructions to build the console are here: nakama/console/ui at master · heroiclabs/nakama · GitHub.

Could you elaborate a bit on the following please:

The idea is to replace text json editor for some collections for something more comfortable and friendly to gamedesigners…

What would you like to change the json text editors for?

Then you have to address them by id, but that is not convenient. Implementing lookup in TS, that shows title, but returns id, I guess, could solve this one.

My understanding is that you’d like to add reverse-lookups to the storage engine to allow to find objects by their stored JSONB content. While this is a good idea in terms of console features, in practice it has severe performance implications so we might not be able to accomodate this addition.

And second question, I’ve seen a few topics saying, that you are looking toward extending or simplifiing nakama console. What are your current plans in this direction?

We don’t have a public roadmap for the console at the moment, but if there’s a particular feature you’d like to see consider opening a feature request as an issue in the Nakama GitHub repository.

I do not know, how it looks from the nakama architect’s perpective, but we have two types of collections in the game. First type of collections holds our game model (static data, that is used in the game, like prices, titles, descriptions, etc.) This data is shared between server and client, and used for validation of client requests. Second type is actual user progress data (dynamic data for every user). Personally I’d prefer to put them in different DBs. This would simplify updating our game and managing static data. But I do not see “out of the box” support for several DBs in nakama.
If we talk about first type, many of its collections look like tables. And the idea is to replace text editor for them with some open source JS or TS lib, that allows editing json data as table with rows and some kind of structure. We could add rows to the table, change the existing rows, then when the console user hit “save” button, we would get JSON from lib and save it to DB as one of nakama’s collections.

I see your concern about performance. But, first, editing static content of the game is only allowed on dev servers, not in production. And, second, there has to be heavy cache usage on JS side to make it all work properly.
Implementing lookups is the next step of the plan. I can share how it’ll look like, when I have some progress on this feature. It’ll probably take a few weeks, since I’ll be doing it in my free time.

Thank you for reading that far. One small question left, I guess =) .

Does this all sound reasonable to you? Or am I missed some nakama functionality?

In my opinion, the current console is capable enough for editing any static data you’re storing using the storage engine. If you’d like to display the data in a more specific way I’d create a simple separate service that uses S2S calls and models the output how it’d be more convenient to your game designers.

I don’t think using a separate DB is necessary at all, I’d just structure a single object with all the static data in a way that makes sense. The console could be used just for quick editing, but if you create your own simple service with S2S calls you could add a schema validations to the JSON, for example.

My performance concern was specifically at the example you gave for reverse lookups - which would require new, non trivial indices to be set up, otherwise it won’t scale, and has it’s own set of tradeoffs. Updating an object using the provided APIs should be perfectly fine, production or not.

If I can give another advice, I’d store all the static data in a single well known object instead of spreading it out across many. This will also make it easier to find any data within it (such as the spell ID you mentioned).