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Member Since 05 Apr 2004
Offline Last Active Aug 06 2015 04:22 PM

Topics I've Started

Unique Client Identifier

07 March 2010 - 09:27 PM

I've been toying with a couple of ideas as to how to uniquely identify a client without having to use their IP address (and without violating privacy) particularly in the case of banning. Suffice it to say that I'm developing a multiplayer game in which users connect to a central server for (basically) matchmaking and I've considered that at some point it may become necessary to permanently ban a player. While the easy way would be to, very simply, delete an account and ban certain e-mail addresses from registering, suppose there's a bit of a savvy end-user who's bent on ruining things for everybody else. What's an effective means of permanently banning that user without imposing whole IP range bans (as we all know IP bans are worthless these days)? I had thought it possible that the client could generate a hash from some sort of identifier on the machine such as hardware or some sort of GUID provided by the host OS... I've poked around on Google for a bit and there are many suggestions against using MAC addresses as these can be changed via software/drivers. CPUID seems to no longer be supported and other things are Windows only (this game currently runs on Windows, MacOS X and BSD). I imagine that each platform will probably have some slightly different means of achieving a unique identifier. It's also an open-source game which means that anybody with any bit of programming knowledge will probably be able to get around such a permaban very easily by modifying the client to send a random hash (which would then circumvent the ban). These are repeat offenders that can be reported to ISP's and I seriously doubt I'd see too many of them. Anyway, I'm curious what others' thoughts on this are? (P.S. -- this isn't about perfect security or even industry grade game protection... more an intellectual challenge)

Number Concurrent Users in Commercial MMO's

03 July 2009 - 10:30 AM

Hello, network experts! I've been curious just how many concurrent users commercial MMO games typicaly have connected at any given time. I have a few ideas as to how they built their server architecture but I was just wondering what is considered a 'normal' concurrent user connetions in these games.

Using 3DS Max 8.0 for Isometric Graphics

26 June 2009 - 09:48 AM

Hello everyone. I'm hoping that I'm posting in the right place for this question. I am part of a development team working on a 2D Isometric game. I have an artist who is using 3DS Max 8.0 to create objects for the game but I'm having difficulty explaining to him how to render isometric artwork using 3DS. I figured that the Orthographic Projection setting on the camera would work and it sort of does but the angle is wrong (it appears to be 45 degrees versus ~35 degrees). I figured that a possibility would be to export to an easy-to-use model format like MD2 and just generate the graphics through a utility like that but now it's getting difficult to figure out how to export the MD2 from 3DS. I tried just importing it into Milkshape3D but the UV coordinates are not stored and so it's another roadblock. I'd like to try to streamline the process and either render the graphics directly from 3DS Max using some sort of macro that positions the camera properly and the object in 8 directions (up/down/left/right and four diagonals). Any suggestions would be very welcome as I'm not an artist myself (I'm a programmer and the project lead). The more that could be done from within 3DS the better but if there are pre-made utilities or tutorials of any sort that could help my artist better understand what I'm trying to explain these would be very helpful as well. Thanks!

Lookup Table Appropriate?

11 March 2007 - 05:01 PM

The title of this topic seems misleading to me but I'll get to the point. I'm not so much writing a game rather than experimenting with different kinds of game-type problems and solutions to those problems. At this point, I'm looking at a problem presented in an 'airline' style game in which one needs to define, modify and delete various 'flight paths' to different cities. For the sake of example, let's consider a small region, say the United States with just a few airports, say 5. The user can create a route from any of the 5 airports to any other of the other airports. Here's the question: Each 'flight path' has a different cost and a distance from the origin. I have been thinking about various solutions to this problem and I think my best bet is to use a lookup table of sorts. Each flight path is listed within the table including distance and cost. I've used for this example 5 airports but there could potentially be hundres. A lookup table in my mind seems to be a good solution but could potentially involve a rather large lookup table. Am I headed in the right direction or is there a more direct/efficient manner in which I can define 'flight paths'? Thanks in advance to any input... ^_^