Creating a server for a shut down game

Recommended Posts

o back in 2015, there was a game that I liked to play called Transformers Universe. Unfortunately, it got shut down and they terminated all the servers for the game, and they got rid of the website and stuff. Today, I used the way back machine to go back and access some of the archives of the website, and I managed to download an installer for the game which had all of the game files. I pretty much knew that it was not going to work, and I got this issue. (https://gyazo.com/15bc28ac401f035e8eb99d6a9fc19a51). 

This got me thinking, could I make my own server to play the game from which would allow me to play? Like a private server sort of deal? The only problem is that, when you launch up the game, you had to log in to make an account and I'm pretty sure they wiped all of the accounts and what not. If I made my own server, could I make my own account and be able to log in and play the game. Or this there a way I can just play the game without having to login entirely. I'm no unity developer so this is why I have all these questions and I really need help. If you want to talk privately, you can just PM me for any other stuff you need to know.

- Evan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Essentially you'd have to reverse-engineer the API that the client and server use to communicate. Depending on just how much the former relies on the latter, that could be a piece of cake (basically an accounts database) or a total nightmare.

If you're brave, you might think about contacting the game devs and saying "Hey, you shut down your game servers but I really loved your game, could you help me set up my own?" Of course, best not to mention if you're considering reverse engineering the thing. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, shelvick said:

Essentially you'd have to reverse-engineer the API that the client and server use to communicate. Depending on just how much the former relies on the latter, that could be a piece of cake (basically an accounts database) or a total nightmare.

If you're brave, you might think about contacting the game devs and saying "Hey, you shut down your game servers but I really loved your game, could you help me set up my own?" Of course, best not to mention if you're considering reverse engineering the thing.

How would you do that? Is there a tutorial?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are many tutorials.

You need to know some development language pretty well. This is for writing the server replacement.

Then you need to know reverse engineering pretty well, which usually ends up needing knowing some disassembly tools and assembly programming.

Then you need to know networking pretty well. This is for knowing what to look for.

Then you need to know game development in general, so that you know what to expect when diving into what the game actually needs from the network.

Then you need to apply the reverse engineering skills and networking skills to get the game to talk to a fake server you develop (you can start with something simple, but it will need to expand.)

Then you need to disassemble whatever happens for the packets that are sent and received by the game, and make sure that the game "sees" what it expects to see. This is a lot of in-depth reverse engineering and disassembly. (It would be a lot simpler if you had a working server to connect to, and do packet captures -- but you're SOL on that front.)

 

In short, if you need to ask "is there a tutorial," then chances are that you aren't yet skilled and experienced enough to successfully pull this off.

Might be easier to send a letter to the developer and ask if they would be interested in just sharing their server code with you...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

 

Im just a casual gamer, and I had some questions. Let's say they did give me their server code what would I do with it?


 

 

You would find some suitable hardware to run the server on, and then point your game at that server.

Unfortunately, just running a server that already exists requires some experience in computer operations. If you also don't have the experience with that, you'd have to learn things about routing and firewalls and configuration management and hosting. Totally learnable, for sure, and less work than becoming a reverse engineering master (call it a year instead of five years.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now