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I just had a multiplayer test yesterday with some people from my publisher, Strategy First.

They were up in Montreal, Canada...and I'm down in Raleigh, NC. There were 3 guys from my publisher playing, and I started up 2 clients here in my apartment.

When you start the game...I pull down a .html document from my Radioactive-Software website. That document contains among other things (MOTD, etc.) the IP address of the 'Master Server'.

The client then goes out to the master server, pulls down a list of active 'Gang War Servers' on the internet. The client then pings them all and sorts. I'm running the Master Server, and a few game servers off a T1 line in my office near by.

I was a litte suprised when I had a ~35 ping on one client, and a ~65 ping on the other. They all about a 70 ping. I thought it would be alot higher than that. It's strange that my ping was the same as theirs.

Anyways....this was the first time I've tested the game on the 'net with more than 3 clients. Everything went exactly as I expected it to...there were no crashes in the few hours we were testing it (except one crash on exit), and there were no sync issues, which I was very happy about.

Also there was no lag, my prediction algorithms held up great :-) Bandwidth was also very nice, I spent a lot of time optimizing it down to the bit.

I'm glad to have a solid game, technically, to build off of at this point. I'm going to make sure everything stays stable.

Things are coming along nicely gameplay wise as well. I've got a lot of ideas for the game....let me know what you think of these, they'll be the first into the game:

- "Conquest", the purpose is to just eliminate the other gangs, or reach a score of X (20,000 by default).
- "Command point control", the purpose is to control 5 randomly positioned command points throughout the city, signified by a flag or something. Control is defined by no other gangs coming within 15 meters of the point, for a period of 30 seconds (or something like that).
- "Hijack", the purpose of this gameplay mode is to hijack armoured cars and drive them back to your headquarters. There will only be 1 armoured car ont he map at any time, so gangs will be fighting for it. If you get an armoured car back to your HQ, your gang gets $100,000. The first gang to cap 5 armoured cars, wins the game.

I'm gonna try and have at least 10 gameplay modes in the game....it should be sweet.

Sorry for the infrequency of updates to the journal, I've been very busy lately :-)

**Sorry there is no fullscreen anti-aliasing on these screenshots. I should have taken some screens during the test yesterday, oh well. I just grabbed these a second ago, I was playing around an empty server.

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Glad to hear everything is going well! Keep up the great work and goodluck for the near future.

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It's great to hear that everything is working as expected. I like your game mode ideas, although I'm sure only excessive beta-testing will manage to make them balanced. By the way, what exactly happens when a gangster dies, do I have to employ new gangsters? Or will he reappear some time later wounded at the headquarters? Do gangsters gain skill over the time?

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