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Sorrowsbane

Multiplayer Text Game

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Hello, I am new to this community, but I have read many a post about game design on this forum, so I'd like to thank all of you for the help you gave me. The game I would like to develop is browser/text-based game in which you run a simple nation and can interact with other players and their nation. Games similar to this include Lords, NationStates, and Utopia among others. I think that programming with PHP and with a MySQL database is the best and most efficient way to go, though my experience is primarily in Python, GML and C based languages. With these languages, I have developed several games, but all of them are single player or multiplayer with graphics. I do not see a need in programming a client because a server in PHP could handle what an only-text game would require (correct me if I am mistaken). The game would not have a set storyline, the use of graphics would be limited (for logos and maps, etc.), and there would not be very much pre-created content to the game; the players create the world. My goals are not too lofty, I believe, I would like to create the game for a small group of casual players. The game would be roleplaying encouraged and I will attempt to create some sort of a community via forums and/or chatrooms. I want this to be more of a game that you play when you have a few minutes of spare time than a "play-for-hours-grindfest". This game would be more of a hobby project than a serious development, for I am the only one going to be producing this (unless I go open source). I might use advertisements, donation buttons, or purchasable features (I don't know about that one...) to help pay for server costs, website costs and other expenses, but not right off the bat. The server requirements shouldn't be that high, should it? Well, thanks for bearing with me finishing this post and I hope you will reply with your comments, suggestions and critisms. I want to know if my goals are reasonable and if this project will work from a programming, maintaining and player enjoyment perspective. Thanks for your time and God bless, Sorrowsbane

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If you know C or C like languages, you will pick PHP in no time (it's basically the same syntax beside variables).

PHP is certainly a good solution for web bases software, if you don't need to commercialize it. And then you also have also some commercial solutions.

MySQL is a good database for that kind of projects. So here also I would say good choice.

Now, for the type of project, you should be able to do it, it may requires a little bit of work if you want clean and fun rules, but it's doable. What's more work is advertise your game to let people know you exists, and also take care of your hosting. As if your game starts to be known, you will not be able to use a shared hosting (due to the CPU / network usage of your game).

Be prepared to invest a lot of time in it, if you want to see your project work. I do have myself a web MORPG, and I can tell you it's a near full time work. (It's now nearly 2 years that the game is up and running)

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I just started with PHP/MySQl not to long ago myself. Like bertrand said, if you already know C or a C like language, it will be easy. Same syntax, just slap a $ in front of every variable, and learn the MySql functions, and you'll be fine.

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I'd say program it in Python. There are loads of libraries that could cut development time significantly, and you're more familiar with that than you are with PHP. The only real reason why you might not want to do that is that finding a host for a long-running Python process is harder than finding a PHP host.

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For a web-based, database-driven game that's a hobby project, I'd recommend Ruby. If you're a python developer, you should feel good going with that. It's a good language and I've got nothing against it. However, if it's a hobby project, maybe it'd be fun to pick up a new language! This is the sort of situation Ruby on Rails is practically made for.

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