| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (40)

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 5:51PM Borick said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@SgtBaker1234556 This generation can't do it.

Things like Minecraft can change that. Client-happy architecture from the word Go. The DIKU-derived stuff all grew out of server-side geekdom. The next generation will be mobile and multiplatform-ready.

If there's someone sitting at a desk in a game studio right now, thinking that their 15 years of doing things a certain way secures their future, they should start comparing steam locomotive engineers to deisel locomotive engineers. The tools will evolve.

Reply

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 11:46AM Utakata said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

Well...if you ever invent an MMO that works offline. Do let us know. It will certainly be a less pain in the behiney for many of us who've experienced getting punted unceremoniously to the login screen every time our internet connection has a hiccup. :)

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 11:49AM Goronmon said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

"I guess it's because it took a bit of effort to come to the conclusions I did, but the conclusion itself maybe is confusing without the steps taken to get to it."

The problem is you are forming conclusions without having nearly enough actual knowledge on the subject to come to an informed opinion.

You are effectively arguing:

"You should be able to turn lead into gold pretty easily. I mean, metal is just made up of atoms and stuff. Just mix around a few of these and you'll have gold. I don't see why people find this so confusing."

People are disagreeing with you because of your ignorance of the subject matter, not because there is some conspiracy to keep Tempes Magus from revealing the 'truth' about offline MMOs.

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 12:02PM DrunkenGamer said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
ok im only going to put one thing into this - even taking out of the equation cheating, there is not a personal machine on the planet that would be able to cope with the rigours of running an MMO for more than a small selection of players at once

I was a developer on a small web based MMO, not even a client based one, with a little over 50,000 concurrent players and even to keep that afloat and running smoothly we required 3 DB servers, 6 Web Servers & a Utility server (email, irc etc - there were also 2 development servers but i wont count them either)

These were not low spec servers either, they were powerful beasties and even they would occasionally be slowed down by periods of excessive usage. We streamlined every inch of that game at every occasion.

The databases needed daily (and for some sectors or the game hourly) clean-ups to remove data that is no longer of use, removal of data requires that indexes be maintained as well

I can tell you from experience that the client you have on your machine is a fraction of your overall character information - the bulk of your information is on that remote server in the database and the amount of space on that database you take up will be ever expanding. The storage requirements for you alone will be massive and that gets exponentially larger as you include information about other people

so for pure storage alone its not possible

Then you have data transmission to content with - now you did say 'your already getting all that data' when someone pointed out that you would need the facts about all the other players in the game - put simply you are not

what you are getting is a small portion of the data selected by the server based on certain criteria. These criteria will differ based on what you are doing in the game, what your settings are, what addons you are running.

one of the primary limiters will be location, to save bandwidth the server will look at your location and only return you the data your client needs in order to put players within a certain radius from you - and this will be a fraction of the players information as you don't need to know things like what is in their inventory, what their action bar settings are etc

this is why you can not target people outside a certain radius - as the data that is sent about them will either not include their location as it is not needed by the client or they may not even be included in the subset you get at all.

even the small game i worked on would see several Terabytes of data transfer each and every month, in heavy periods we could see gb's of transfers per hour (the servers were at the end of a nice fat connection)

So as you can see data transfer is deliberately slimmed to only what you actually need, in order to play these games as you suggest the amount of data that would be required to make it work would increase exponentially with the number of players online (hence private servers only handling small numbers of players at a time - the bigger ones are actually on servers)

So data transfer would also make this infeasible

Dont get me wrong I liek the conviction and the idea in its core principal, but i can honestly tell you the chances of it happening are not likely on a technical level before you even get down to the conceptual level of online v offline play and how you merge/detach the two

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 12:52PM potaco said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

The difference is that you're not just saying "think about it"; you're saying "it's so easy, but everyone is too scared to do it". Yet you show no proof of it even being feasible from a technical standpoint using modern hardware despite multiple assurances from multiple people with field experience. In the future, sure... But right now? People aren't doing it because it just won't work.
Reply

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 1:19PM DrunkenGamer said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus well one of the issues with peer to peer (above and beyond the data storage & bandwitdh requirements ive listed above) is that the principal of P2P would not work in this context

P2P works because the files you are trying to grab are static and mapped into chucks of data. When you grab a file using this method you are able to grab any chunk from any other user that has it because the datamap matches, thereby meaning that when you recombine it with the other pieces nothing extra has to be done to it.

Now what you are suggesting is for a live game (offline or online, at this point they have the same issue) to work with the same P2P manner, at this point you hit a couple of issues.

1. Data mapping only works for P2P because the file data itself does not change. In a game the data would be constantly changing meaning that it would constantly changing meaning the maps would have to be redone all the time leading to problem 2.

2. Because the maps change you would be only be able to get the data from the original source breaking part two of what makes P2P strong - the ability to get data from any source because the data will always match.

Without that you would have to be constantly transferring data from specific source (turning P2P into Direct connection) to know what they are doing, and with each player that you want to get the information the amount you have to transfer grows exponentially

There are elements of P2P in some MMO's but it is only used for the transfer of non changing data (the streaming patch content in wow for example) the moment you want to change anything it cant be done
Reply

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 1:42PM potaco said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

If you're going to announce that you're "done" with an argument, then walk away. Nobody likes "I'm done.... oh but.... and well.... OH and one last thing..."

"Some semblance of the code required for my idea has been done before for other games."
Some semblance of WoW was present in Super Mario Bros. So why wasn't Mario turned into an offline/online MMORPG? It was already offline, all they would have needed to do was let players connect to each other. Heck, they probably coded it all and just locked players out, right? Wrong. Different games are created different ways. If you refuse to understand that the architectures are fundamentally different and that network/hardware have real-world limits, then you will be forever longing.

"Most of all, they should look into allowing customers to play MMOs offline or on private servers to save themselves the cost of running servers while keeping personal information more secure and making more sales due to an option to play without the subscription.

Essentially, they'll make much more money by being smarter. "
How will they be making more money by letting people play on private servers without a subscription? Also note that you are now saying that a subscription is optional, whereas before your argument was that the subscription would remain, but that an offline mode would be available.

Trust me, if there was big money to be made, you would have seen this by now.

Reply

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 8:14PM potaco said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

"They could save a lot of money, and make more profits, by letting players use their own servers or their own computers as a host or some other method that they don't seem to even try."

Money is basically the holy grail. If there is a way to make money, someone will find it and exploit it. Again, the reason you don't see a game like this is because it's not feasible right now. Do I think we'll see something drastically different in 10-15 years? Absolutely. But your half-baked ideas are definitely not "simple" to implement, nor would it be playable for more than a handful of people at a time.

"There is no reason to cut a customer off completely from a game they paid the full price to own."
This is an entirely different argument. You don't have to like or pay subscription fees, but it's a very valid business model that millions of people accept. And you can't say you paid the "full price" for a game like an MMO that is constantly being patched, evolving, etc. A lifetime subscription is the closest thing you'd find and even those are not offered very often these days (and when they are offered, it's nowhere near the price of the box you bought to play the game in the first place).
Reply

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 12:22PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I'm starting to become convinced Tempes Magus is one of the best trolls ever. He's Troll 2.0

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 12:44PM Irem said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Huh, I also did not know that Massively had forums.

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 1:38PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
You gave your reasoning, and yet multiple people have pointed out where it is flatly incorrect.

You cannot liken your ideas to Tesla's, because he actually had the technical knowledge to know not only if his ideas were possible; he could put his ideas into actuation. Both of which are FAR cries from just throwing theoretical ideas out there. Unless were talking Einstein level theories. Which an offline mode for MMO doesn't exactly match up with.

Otherwise, I could be like you and say, you know what? I wish we made rockets that went faster than the speed of light. Wouldn't that be cool?

Actually, that's a way to do it. Next time you speak, simply put "I wish" into everything you say, that way no one will take you seriously, some people will agree that'd be cool, and we can move on.

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 6:39PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

So now we're talking metaphorically about this stuff? I thought these were actual ideas you had to implement that were "easy?" I guess the goalposts have moved.

Look, it wasn't just that your ideas were technically impossible. It was that they had no real motive. You could at least explain why MMOs need an offline mode like what you described (your explanation on how it's cheaper was proved false). It's fairly easy to solo in most MMOs these days. Why play it offline?
Reply

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 7:23PM potaco said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

The thing is, we DO know more about this subject than you. It's one thing to buck a trend; it's another completely to disregard reality based on the way you think things should work in a programming environment.
Reply

Posted: Jul 15th 2011 12:39AM potaco said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

I've said it and others have said it: the average players' computers and internet connections simply cannot handle the massive amounts of data/connections necessary to run an MMO game at an acceptable level. I'm not naive enough to say it will never be possible, but it isn't right now.
Reply

Posted: Jul 15th 2011 7:15AM Ekphrasis said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

I've followed the back and forth here with interest and some mild amusement.

I sincerely applaud your desire to share ideas and would encourage you to keep sharing them.

However, your posts make assumptions with no basis in fact and you have been frequently and blatantly wrong. Suggesting a 'solution' with a lack of technical knowledge and calling it 'easy' - no matter how well intentioned to spur debate - does no favours for your argument or the way you are perceived.

Those who have replied to you in this comment thread have for the most part been patient, logical and rational in refuting your statements of an 'easy' solution. Respect that they may have a better understanding than you do here. If you still disagree, conduct some research to educate yourself then come back to challenge them with facts.
Reply

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 1:47PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus

Call it whining if you prefer. You still don't know what you're talking about. MMOs have nothing to learn from single player games that have online modes. Those games do not have persistent worlds that are ecosystems. That's the whole point of an MMO. Which goes back to the fundamental question of why you want such a robust offline system for MMOs, which would require a herculean effort on the part of developers while not making a lick of sense for WHY or HOW they would do such a thing.

You still don't even understand the storage requirements that your idea would take, and it's just one of the many "back to the drawing board" moments (where your entire argument comes apart) that you just conveniently ignore and grasp for some other idea, like P2P MMOs. Just... no.

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 3:23PM Bramen said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
The rumor is that Darkfall is going to wipe all characters in order to provided limits on how a player can build his character. So you cant be a jack-of-all-trades master-of-all-trades. Maxing out only 2 skills instead of 10 will take less time. Do you feel this will hurt how long players will stay with Darkfall, will it effectively shorten the game?

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 6:16PM Vgk said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Tempes Magus The disk has to be the easiest thing in the world to bypass, Private servers have to be kept up and are prone to glitches etc. You don't see many pirated MMO's, The diskthing can by bypassed in a matter of seconds with little computer knowledge, usually something as simple as a crack and software like MD or Daemon

Posted: Jul 14th 2011 10:31PM Elikal said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Eh? Did I miss something? .>

Posted: Jul 15th 2011 9:35AM potaco said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
What happened to all of Tempes Magus' comments?

Featured Stories

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW