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About trapdoor

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  1. Copyright of a game title.

    So I guess the size of my "company" would dictate that i just use a unique name that doesn't really exist in the english language and enforce it should we make enough to defend it. But since it's unique, it'll be a lot easier to defend than something that is just two english words together.
  2. If you announce the name of your game before it's complete, (according to the copyright laws nowadays), is the name safe? So long as I've done my research to make sure the name isn't already used somewhere?
  3. Engine options

    I know there's many engines out there and I will conduct my own research as to which one I will use but a good heads up or information about certain engines "they don't tell you" would be nice. I was originally going to go with the latest torque engine from Garage Games but after they were bought out by a big corporation, I'm concerned with where that engine will be in a few years. Big corporations, afaik, don't leave the original spirit with an acquired product for long. While I have yet to work with an engine, I will be experimenting soon with code as I get back into C variants. Too much time with web languages. What I want to avoid is playing with several engines only to find out that: It doesn't do what I need after a year with working with it (it probably promised everything I needed or I thought it was easy enough to implement). The company who owns the engine changed something; whether it be the cost for licensing to dramatic code changes. The company no longer exists after putting some significant time into development. Coding my own engine when there's surely one out there that does what I need already Here's what I'm looking for, and if you think I'm missing something let me know as it is the first time I'm actually choosing an engine. I wouldn't know if I am overlooking something. Affordable. I am willing to purchase an engine and I would prefer paying for something that costs $$. (I only know of a few programs out there that are able to compete with commercial products while being free. Most others just don't compare.) I really liked the licensing around the torque engine. I could purchase it for a few hundred and just let GG collect a royalty until I make over 100G's. I can't afford a big initial licensing fee and hope my game makes as much as the license costs. Well supported and has a future. I don't want an engine that is developed only during full moons. Nor do I want an engine which no longer has an owner. It doesn't have to be a super easy engine to use, just not something that has it's own crazy language (must be indented from the right side and the language reads upsidedown). It has to look like a modern engine. I don't want to make pong or even Wolfenstein 3D. My original choice would have been Torque, or at least I would have seriously considered it. I also have access to the Source Engine, but I don't know what the licensing is for that engine, should I go commercial. Same goes for Warfare? The Unreal engine. (I think it's called that). To give an idea, I was going to try and use one engine for several games, unless there's a better way. My first game would be a topdown 3D RPG, maybe the ability to tilt the view a little, but still topdown. Second either an FPS or possible an RTS. Third would be whatever I didn't do on #2.
  4. I have come to a point where I need to choose what the actual game runs in. Flash, Java, a combination of javascript with Ajax calls and standard HTML, Ajax revamp, or other. I have little knowledge of Flash and my Java is REALLY rusty. I coded something for school but that was over 6 years ago. I'd have to refresh myself on compiling, and writing java applets. All solutions will make http calls to a php file which returns XML. I'm doing this to make the site and it's various versions standard in the data it uses. I'm unsure to which I should use. On the one hand, the Ajax solution already exists for the original site. It will need to be tweaked to work with the new one, but all the work should be minor. Java and Flash are also new to me pretty much so I can't jump in right away without learning the basics. On the other hand, I wanted to change the "gameboard" portion of the site anyway and I'm not sure of how this will affect the existing javascript. A java or flash solution will / should allow me to do some extra things that would be way too much for any browser with javascript. I also noticed that with all the visibility toggling and DOM manipulation could make the browser slow at times. Possibly more than just having a flash / java version. The old way has way too many clicks to perform actions and there's no alternative than to redo it from scratch. One of the extra things I want to do is have lines or arrows indicating all the current orders (an order is sending X ships from one planet to another... the order is carried out at the end of the turn) So there are multiple orders until they become permanent and you get new ships to order around. In the current model, I'd need to use a javascript vector library which I KNOW will do a lot on a browser. So any suggestions? Background: I have written a game in php/mysql and javascript/ajax (which is optional, the game still works without it). It's a strategy game that is a clone (or was) of Konquest from Linux. If you don't know that game, it's closest cousin is Risk. But currently the game is too large visually. Players have to scroll horizontally because the details of whatever they hover over are past their screen. ... for large gameboards that is. I was never truly satisfied with the look anyway. So I've begun to recode the site completely. I'm separating the site into various versions... Ajax compatible, no javascript capable, even a PDA version. I'm working on the Ajax solution right now and the whole site is almost done except for the game itself. The old code for the game is still there, but I have to decide first if I want to reshape it to be the solution for the AJAX version. ---------------- I find myself too long winded for my own good sometimes.
  5. Keeping a game running

    That's not what I mean. Bugzilla or mantis (what I use for my other projects) is for when someone has found a bug, and submits a report. I'm talking more about the step before that. Say the game is started, and at some point it crashes. Unless it's something specific like every time I click on the mailbox the game crashes, all the report will say is "I was doing something then it crashed". In some games, There is a cryptic message in the error but that's there for when it's reported, the dev team can understand that and it gives them a clue as to what to do to fix it. That's just one example. I'd like to know of more methods if they exist. If I can find out how to generate those weird messages, I'd do it and incorporate an auto report tool that runs before the game does. But that's besides the point. Another is I don't know how to generate those kinds of errors. Maybe I'm over complicating what I think their doing. But I hope that sheds some light on to what I'm really after.
  6. I've already made web based turn based strategy game. While coding this, I had another idea that I want to try afterwards. But it got me to thinking, in a multiplayer game, or single for that matter, how would I go about finding and fixing bugs? I know there's a bug report system I can use where the player reports a bug and any details they can give, I see if I can reproduce, then fix it. But what about the more in depth methods like tracebacks (which I currently have no experience with) or other anomalies. In complex systems, surely one can't just look at the bug and go, ok... I think that this is causing it. Unless they are the ones who coded everything.
  7. FPS and jumping

    I don't mind jumpers, I'm not one myself but I try to home my skills to take them out specifically. But I only agree when the atmosphere of the game matters. In CS or Americas Army, no. I think jumping should only be useful for getting over obstacles, and jumping in the open wouldn't really get you out of the sniper's target. AA does it well as your accuracy is absolutely horrible if you start jumping. And if I aim at your head, and you jump, part of your body is still in my crosshair. UT on the other hand, I have to agree, they MADE jumping part of the game when they added dodging. Except for the first one, I just played single player for the sequels as I can't stand bunnies. I don't try and change them. Now as far as game design goes, I actually have a couple in mind that incorporate both styles into one. it's medieval. A simple warrior or heavy hitter cannot jump that well. And when they do, they incur various penalties for doing so. Where as the ninja is allowed to dodge and jump like... well, a ninja. The two styles will have it's adv's and disadv's, but each will have to cope with them.
  8. Your most loved (WOW!) feature in a game!

    Thief 3 Deadly Shadows: The Cradle Level OMG!! This level is by far the scariest level I've ever played. Especially since it's a game that isn't supposed to instill fear, this little level gave me the creeps even in the first half when you never encounter anyone. Kudos to the level designer for that one. Battlezone 1 & 2 When I first played the game and saw my base being built for the first time while in FPS view. Tron 2: Yes! I also agree. I loved the movie and loved even more being able to be IN it or rather it's sequel. Star Wars Jedi Academy: While I liked Jedi Knight, this I loved and I don't know how many times I ran around pushing troopers of the edge in the Bespin level. Star Wars Republic Commando: My favourite SW FPS. I loved the graphics and was awed when I "went down" but my squad was still able to revive me. To Date, Tron 2, and the two mentioned Star Wars games are the only games I know of where I have played from start to finish more than once without cheating. (I usually cheat when I get impatient)
  9. Quote:Original post by wodinoneeye Having a game system where no player ever raises much in ability above any other could prevent easy 'griefing', but games like that wouldnt be possible unless they offered something other than 'leveling' as an achievement. Funny you should say that, my plan was to do away with leveling altogether. Or rather, you can get to the highest level within a day. (the point of it in the first place is to give the user the quick practice on how to use their abilities). There's more to it than that but that's just a brief overview. Quote:Original post by Avatar God Wow. Creating a game system to deal with in-game "criminal" acts is... a very cool and interesting idea. There are a lot of specifics to be worked out, but I think it could be very successful for a lot of things (of course, there is always the problem of people not committing crime in the game due to some deterrence factor - the balance might be hard to strike). If your game had a system like this, I would almost certainly be interested in playing it. I'm not sure how the crime will be captured, or how evidence will be left, but I think we need only 1 of 10k people to be a serial killer to inspire fear in some and others to try and exact revenge. As far as the crimes go though, I didn't exactly think of a fence, although I think it could work. But i agree that it has to be fairly hard to use it. While most stores can be run with their character in NPC mode, I think a fence would require the player to be online. It's just a starting thought. I already had an idea for poison sellers which is illegal if you get caught, same could go for fences. Maybe this... a stolen item can cross 10 different hands before needing to go through a fence or the authorities (which could also be a dirty guard ... a backup fence). But before it goes through a fence, the item somehow 'records' who has touched it, therefore pointing it back to the source. The only problem is if this becomes loot. If you have two warring factions and this item is stolen when it is captured by the enemies... this could also be used as an exploit to get rid of the "memory" of stolen items.
  10. More or less, people will be united by race / or a couple of races. It's in their best interest to form large large empires instead of tight knitted guilds. A guild can only protect you so far where an empire can reach that much more, it also has much more benefits it can acquire. With that said, the safe zones (usually towns) are basically run in such a way that the need to attract people to make their home there. It's only in a town where they have much more protection. Since towns will benefit from being close to good resources, this will help the "farmers" be fairly safe with collecting them. It was also my earlier thought, although I didn't mention it, that I would have two types of character classes where one can attack and be attacked, and the other can't be attacked nor can attack. Sort of like a civilian and adventurer class separation. I'd like to see what kind of storage is needed to keep a log of all chat messages sent out and who could hear them. I want to do away with channels, it's just whisper, say and yell. and whisper is only if you are a couple feet away, not a private message. I have other means for wider chat but that's irrelevant. Evidence... I was thinking of treating the two types of griefing differently. Acts that can be treated as part of the world, are dealt with as such. Like Murder, Theft, etc. Where the interference and out of context kind of griefing is treated in the standard method... report to GM, they call a third party, the problem is dealt with and "this never happened". ;) As for the second scenario, There can be a record action where each player is given a chunk of space on a storage server where they can record the events that surround them. Maybe this can be used for replay for themselves, like doing a few cool moves, or for video recording later etc... but also they can forward a captured moment to a GM, and if the event qualifies as inappropriate behavior, the captured event is removed from the player (so they can record more later on) and also used as evidence against the perp. I actually have two MMO's in the concept stage... (don't worry, they are not going to be developed for at least several more years). But I thought of this: For those who want to act like criminals, i.e. murderers, thieves, and general aholes... that each act like this leaves some kind of evidence behind. The criminal can do their best to cover it up or hide it. (maybe after x days, the evidence starts to go away). Since this kind of action can happen but if done properly, doesn't break the immersion from the game, players may take up an "investigation" type quest. Maybe this kind of action can also affect the criminal where after being correctly identified with the crime, towns begin to become hostile to them.
  11. I don't think I was clear on my second solution. It's much like what I heard LOTRO has. You can play AS mobs. You are the goblin that others are trying to kill. And the more you excel at being a harassing goblin, the more powerful rewards you get. But this solution allows for a more immersed feeling as they can almost be treated as intelligent mobs instead of the dumb ones I find are in all other games. The rewards don't come without their limitations. As a goblin, you are weaker than the average player. But you can roam where ever you want. You can gain to the point where you become a little stronger, but not by much. Then you get access to much more powerful creatures, but these have limits on where they can go. Take playing a demon. It would be a very powerful unit but it can only play in a hell like area. You can't leave to ransack a town or run around in a forest. You have to stay in certain areas. Not as much fun as a goblin, but it has it's perks. Then for those who use this system instead of using the standard adventuring characters, they can be selected by the GM's to be allowed a one use of a super boss like creature. Such as a dragon, etc. They can do whatever they want and their actions will be seen as a something that could have been scripted. Basically people will have to band together to defeat such a character. And the longer that griefer stays alive, good for them. Create fear in the lives of the other players. The true heroes will come out as they go on a player made quest to ride the world of this dragon. EVE's solution was great. It is a perfect example of my first solution. The farther out you go, the more dangerous it is. It's not like they are camping in the middle of what should be a safe zone. They are on the fringes where the law doesn't reach them.
  12. My original idea of a griefer was someone who would kill where there was no gain to themselves. But they wouldn't stop there, they would repeatedly do it. At least not in creative ways. Usually it was players who were half decent but always picking on the weak. To use a real world example... take laser tag. If there are a couple towers, one of which you are in, and you keep getting picked off by someone in the other tower... that's just your fault, you're easy to hit.... but imagine a 10 yearold giggling as they follow you around shooting you in the back or front (whichever way you are facing them) without the chance for your pack to come back online. The old days of Quake 2 when people would be spawn camping... Or the holding-your-finger-upto-someone-but-not-touching-them-all-the-while-saying-"I'm not touching you, I'm not touching you" that you would see kids do. There was no purpose other than to simply annoy the other person. --------- It seems I should have thought longer about griefing than what I had done to create this post. I was merely focusing on one aspect of it and not looking at the bigger picture.
  13. Sorry to bring up another MMO related topic and also about griefers. I understand that griefing will never go away without ruining the game so much that everyone else leaves too. So I've tried to think of ways to encourage or discourage griefing based on various situations. On one solution, I have a system where there are no anti-griefing measures that doesn't fit with the setting. Griefers can't PK within a city because their weapons are taken away from them before they enter (should they find a way to get around this, all the power to them. That's the point of this security step.) And you get them back when you leave. Outside cities, it may be dangerous but within a zone close to cities, griefers will not be more powerful than the guards or roaming military. The military can still be played by people but it's only them thave have very strict rules on how they can act. A civilian or adventurer can do whatever they want so long as they accept the consequences. So this area it's still very risky for someone to be a griefer, only the boldest griefers will go here. Far away from the cities, you enter only at your own risk. If you get jumped... what are you doing there in the first place, at least if you complain about it anyway. My other solution, which can work in conjunction with the first, is a system that rewards griefers for playing the role properly. being a murderer and thief while taunting your victims is generally frowned upon, I want it to still happen, but not a lot. I just don't want it to be the only thing that happens in the game. So this solution also allows griefers to play MOBs. The rewards from mobs are not part of the discussion as it's irrelevant. Lets just say for arguments sake that mobs offer nothing but a hazard or obstacle to your quest. But the "entry level" griefer class is a weaker mob. The better they do, the higher rank they get which means they can start commanding units. The bigger force, the harder they are... but only if they use this class to grief. Should they use the standard classes that are available, they don't get these upgrades (or they'd lose them if they griefed outside this system). And once you maximize the class, new options may be available that allow them to be much more powerful. There can also be some special rewards that let them play uber classes that have boss like powers. Basically, it's an attempt to encourage those who want to grief, to do it in a way that enhances the story of the game and not ruin experiences for others. ... I know, sometimes that's their goal, but it fits better with the environment and setting if someone is being constantly killed by a group of mobs instead of someone who looks like they SHOULD be helping them. Your thoughts? So how's about a little survey? Do you grief? What do you like about it? Would you use a proper grief system if it were in place? What would likely win you over to use such a system if no to the above?
  14. Friendly Fire in Melee games

    as for the Wii. I also noticed there's a significant delay between when you make a motion and when it happens. But yeah. I thought of the stopping the action after you hit something, unless you're doing a power attack where you intended to hit multiple targets. Or maybe something like this: Whatever your swing, whether it's a stabbing motion (very precise) or an actual swing, the system will calculate who got the worst of the hit. If it's a graze on one and a dead on hit to another, the second gets registered as "hit" while the first would be ignored. Or another would be: would the sword be stopped. I wonder how much processing is needed to do this or if standard collision detection takes just as much of the CPU as this solution would.
  15. I just finished playing Dark Messiah. It got me thinking as plenty of times in the game I accidentally killed a friendly NPC because he stepped into my swinging sword, or when we were flanking an enemy, my sword reach still hit him. I'd get so mad and start yelling to vent my frustration as they kept stepping in the way. Now I remember playing FPS games like Americas Army where friendly fire was on and the only way you would hit a friendly is if you aimed at him or poorly threw a grenade. It seems as though at least with me, the melee games were much harder to control Friendly fire. I was wondering if there's a better way to have the computer know if your attack on a friendly was accidental, intentional, or shouldn't happen (say if the guy is beside you or on the other side of your target but the blade / staff still hits him. I'll leave area effects out of this for now. I don't want to turn friendly fire off, but at the same time be intelligent. And melee seems to be where the problem is for me. Arrows and ranged attacks, it's obvious that when you have two people close together, it's hard enough even with say a gun to hit the right person. But with swords it should know that if i'm aiming directly at a friendly, and trying to move around any enemies... that i'm intentionally trying to kill him. Otherwise a graze as my blade swings too much to the left, is a minor accidental hit... and something that normally would hit a friendly but being they are on the other side of a monster, the monster will take the impact. So how would this kind of scenario be possible?