Manga+Press 4.0 RC 3 has been released

This version has been a long time in the making, with many stops and starts, life getting in the way, and so on and so forth. Sadly, while the features that I had planned didn’t make their way into this version, I am very glad to finally get it out the door.

A lot of changes have been made to how Manga+Press 4.0 handles templates, so if you’re not comfortable upgrading, stay on Manga+Press 3.0, which does support the current WordPress version.

Other changes with Manga+Press 4.0 involves the use of Composer autoloading, and ditching support for old PHP versions. Going forward, Manga+Press 4.0 supports PHP 7.0 and newer.

The issue that initially prompted the re-write, which dealt with using the Latest Comic page as the home page has been fixed. As part of that fix, I added a new custom post-type, called Comic Pages. Right now, you can use them mainly for the Latest/Archive Comic pages (and they work the same way as a standard page), but I’ve maintained backwards compatibility for the default WordPress pages as well.

One new feature that I added was a “Cover Image” field. While working on the new Manga+Press version, I noticed that TwentyNineteen added the featured image to the header. Manga+Press reuses the “Featured Image” feature to display comics. I realized that it would be cool to add a preview or “cover” image for the comic to occupy that same space. To enable this field, you will need to add add_theme_support('mangapress', ['cover-images']); to your theme’s functions.php file. With that, there are three functions that you can use to load the cover image: mangapress_the_comic_cover, mangapress_has_cover_image, and mangapress_theme_supports_cover_images. To see cover images in action, enable TwentyNineteen. As of now, TwentyNineteen is the only theme that supports the feature.

In the coming days, there will be documentation updates and tutorials showing how to integrate the new version of Manga+Press with 3rd party themes. Until then, I highly recommend not upgrading unless you have a strong understanding of PHP and WordPress, and are comfortable modifying your own themes!

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