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lerno

Member Since 10 May 2004
Offline Last Active Dec 12 2014 06:45 AM

Topics I've Started

Multi-path story/simulation game with anonymized multiplayer feedback - has this been d...

21 November 2014 - 01:54 PM

I'm sketching on a game and I'm looking for some references to take a look at.

 

At the surface, it's a random adventure: you do actions, random events occur depending on action and your previous actions. Although much more formal, games like Princess Maker is also roughly in this category.

 

The original idea was basically to have a few one-shot events, but then fill the game with a lot of chained events with preconditions. So if you randomly encountered X at some previous time, then some other storyline might start if you choose A at some point, but if you never saw X, then B is the right one to launch a story. Etc etc.

 

Still, such a game (with randomized but pre-created chains of events) will end up being predictable and perhaps not very deep.

 

What I'm going for is a sort of a pen-and-paper RPG feeling, where it's more the journey and the story of your character that counts. I also want the different possible paths to be widely different.

 

Anyway, an idea is to incorporate multiplayer. I'm not a big fan of internet based multiplayer: it's difficult to sync people up and most people act as a******s online. In most cases all you get in a multiplayer game is the ability to perhaps challenge others and compete in ranks. Which is fairly boring.

 

My take on this is therefore a bit different. What about letting other people work as anonymized feedback generators to each other's stories. That is, not only does your actions count, but the [anonymized] actions of other people playing the game will be used as feedback to generate events in your particular "universe". The worlds of the players are both independent and coupled. There is no direct "action" between the worlds - if A kills the big boss in his instance, B won't automatically see that the boss was killed in her world. On the other hand, A's slaying of the boss might trigger a different event that cause this boss to disappear in the near future in B's world etc.

 

This is all very loosely thought out yet, and I'm very curious if anyone knows of games that actually works this way.


UI heavy game - what type of 2D engine do I use?

29 July 2014 - 01:45 PM

I'm on the fence regarding the graphics engine of my current game and hope for some advice.

This is an UI heavy strategy/rpg. Although the game is played on a (simple) 2D map, it is largely turn based and only vrey rudimentary animations occur.

Interaction mostly occurs by selecting actions on secondary screens. The UI isn't very complex in itself but comprise a large number of screens.

Due to the largely static gameplay I hope to add a bit of animation an particle effects to updates and other changes.

It is common to add lots of decoration to the UI for this type of games, but I have avoided that for a cleaner look.

Previously my games have been smaller and fairly simple. In these cases, the standard UI lib - with a few tweaks - have been enough, and for this project I also know that it's quite possible to use the normal UI lib to implement the game.

However, my fear is that in choosing a standard UI lib the types and amounts of effects will be affected, so that the UI ends upp avoiding the more extravagant features that I would not think twice before adding had I used a 2D graphics engine for games.

On the other hand, sticking to the UI framework would minimize power consumtion, and provide a lot of nice text components.

On the other hand, the game is fairly power hungry for other reasons, and there is minimal text input.

For the first version here it's for iOS - so UIKit vs Cocos2D/SpriteKit.

Normal UI Framework or animation based lib for fairly static strategy game?

09 October 2013 - 12:53 PM

I'm currently rewriting the client for a strategy game. The clients are for iOS, so the normal UI framework already has fairly good support for simpler animations and effects. I've experience successfully leveraging it for two game titles already.

The advantage is low battery consumption compared to an animation lib (for iOS Cocos2D and SpriteKit), as well as excellent text and input handling. It's also easy to get a rough UI up and running.

Since I have yet to run a full-fledged project with an animation lib, it's hard to evaluate the downsides, but I believe that I might not be as generous with animations as I would with a animation lib / normal game engine.

The game itself is very static, it doesn't need more animations than you'd need implementing chess.

This is why I'm on the fence here: standard UI framework or an animation lib as basis for the game? It's not clear to what's best.

I'm hoping to add a few tasteful animations to prevent it from feeling to static, but hardly sufficient to motivate using an animation based framework. On the other hand, I'm extensively modifying button rendering, view transitions etc, so at places the UI framework isn't much of a help.

What would you recommend and why?

Game server DoS / DDoS mitigation strategies?

02 August 2013 - 01:51 PM

Are there any must-have DoS / DDoS mitigation strategies one should always build into a server?

 

Regardless of TCP or UDP, it feels like there is very little one could do against a DDoS which tries to saturate the network.

 

Even if the attacker can't do that, simply sending login packets with spoofed IP addresses/ports could be a problem. For something like SSL, it's possible to hit the CPU hard by initiating a handshake. CPU exhaustion attacks can be mitigated by puzzle challenge-style logins, but it should be fairly easy to block login by making sure that the all login "slots" are in use.

 

(I know some websites that use CloudFlare, but that's for serving http/https content and so isn't an option)

 

Any opinions of what a reasonable line of defence is?


UDP network layer must-haves?

30 July 2013 - 01:52 PM

I've been trying to gather requirements for an UDP network protocol with virtual connections in a client-server scenario. 

 

This is what I got so far

  1. Glenn Fiedler's series: Use a protocol prefix to filter packets without the prefix (no real motivation given)
  2. Quake 3: Handle the case where the player's port may randomly change due to NAT behaviour. I asked on serverfault.com and heard that this may happen in other cases than with old NATs. I notice this is in Enet as well.
  3. Packet sequencing (obvious)
  4. Acks (implicit or explicit), some protocols use timeouts as well.
  5. Some sort of bandwidth / congestion handling (most implementations have this)
  6. Fragment large packets

What's missing?


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