Saturday, February 28, 2009

MMO & Indie

If you're indie, don't do an MMO. If you're a hobbyist, don't even dream about it.

Ok, so the post I'm referring to is 4 years old. Funny how the web is changing everything. Of course Golemizer is not the typical 3D AAA MMO "next WoW-Killer"... But still, it shows how the definition of MMOs have changed over time.

Source: Clicky

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Friday, February 27, 2009

Star Wars: The Old Republic - Web Comic

First issue here: clicky

I already said I wanted my glowstick. I'll be there.

Hype mode on!!!!

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Golemizer on Cool site of the day

I invite everyone to rate Golemizer on Cool site of the day:

This page will link to Golemizer only on friday, February 27.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Breaking news: Devs of free MMORPG need money to live too

And I thought they were supreme beings living without that kind of material needs... :/

Seriously, I need to remove some websites from my RRS reader...


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Monday, February 23, 2009

Golemizer view from the sky

Drifting Willow made an amazing job taking screenshots of every zones in Golemizer before cleaning up the old houses (of players that haven't been around for more than 60 days).

Seeing this is really amazing for me:

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Experiment: Building a Flash client in less than 2 hours

I finally unwrapped my copy of Flash and decided it was time to experiment a bit.

Using javascript for Golemizer allowed me to ship the game after a year of development but wasn't of great help for marketing purpose. Most portals and review blogs/websites are focusing on Flash games. Golemizer could have fit some of them but since it's not in the Flash category, it complicates things a bit (it's true that most of these websites will concentrate on casual games but a lot also includes multiplayer games and I've seen Sherwood Dungeon embedded quite often). In the end, a lot of them won't just bother with the game since it's just not made in Flash.

Javascript seems to fit better the PBBG market which doesn't have the same access to visibility (mostly through voting websites but reaching the top takes a lot of votes and to get votes you need visibility which you don't have because you're not at the top of the list...).

Point taken: go where the crowd is. You need to make it easy for them. Don't assume that because your game is "oh so great" that people will come by themselves. You need to go at them and they currently are around Flash games. So Flash it will be for the next project.

So after some research, I finally found two samples that helped me. The first links Flash to a web service and the second is used to read JSON data (used by the web service). Both are using free third party libraries since it seems that Flash thought it would be a good idea to not provide any support for web services in their last version. Go figure...

Using these two samples, I had a basic Flash chat client linked to Golemizer's code less than two hours later. It feels good to know you were right to take some design decisions in the past :-). I changed absolutely nothing to Golemizer's code and the Flash client is actually quite simple.

The only functions from the web service I'm using are:
- doLogin
- sendMessage
- getChat

These commands are pretty much the only one needed to build an interface for Golemizer (add getEvents and you're set). Once you have those, you just need to deal with the data you're receiving from the web service.

So I don't see anything but a chat box but since Golemizer is only using /commands for every actions (move, craft, attack, ...), I can roam the world in text mode calling the function sendMessage("/somecommand with paramaters").

/teleport dock *poof*, the server change the location of my character and I can see what players are saying at the dock. /do 54 and *poof*, I just started a crafting process for a table. /addpart 3465 *poof* I just added some wood to the crafting process. /mute "bad player" *poof*, just muted someone. /smile *poof*, I just sent an emote. I'll stop there cause I could go on all day like that ;-)

So, when will we see a Flash interface for Golemizer? Not yet. I'll first experiment this with the next project (that 90% of mechanics are already coded, it is much more simpler than Golemizer). If I'm satisfied with the final result of this game I might then build a new interface for Golemizer. From what I'm seeing so far, with appropriate time, this shouldn't be so difficult to code.

edit: here's the libraries I used

For JSON it's as3corelib

And for web services

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Monday, February 16, 2009

Native JSON support coming to your browser!

Finally! This will greatly improve client performance for Golemizer (and next project not yet ready to talk about)!

Communication between your browser and Golemizer's server is done using a web service sending JSON data. To parse the data received in JSON format, the javascript function eval() is used. Native support of JSON will make the parsing of this data much faster than using the eval() function (without talking about other disadvantages but eval() was still faster than a custom built json parser).

Less client-side lag!


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Monday, February 9, 2009

Just found out about GDC Canada

It's still at the other side of the country but at least closer.

Hmm... just saw registration fees...

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Friday, February 6, 2009

Maybe you can't make a piano...

But you can create Mario's levels!

I'll never stopped being amazed by what I find in Golemizer... lol

Click to zoom

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