Author Topic: CoH emulator server  (Read 5649 times)

alphajaybo

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CoH emulator server
« on: January 11, 2014, 11:33:58 AM »
Ok so recently i started a topic about whether or not icon could have combat added into it, and then Ohioknight posted about a idea he had for the emulator. Seeings though the server has to be re created, why don't we make new missions, and it got me thinking maybe he is right. people must have been bored of playing the same missions over and over again, so if we could somehow add new missions to the CoH emulator server, (thats when its done) what missions would you like to see and if you could make a mission, what would it be
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Heroette

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2014, 02:03:16 PM »
If they manage to get The AE Building working, or something similar, we would have people making new missions all the time. 

Blackshear

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2014, 02:43:28 PM »
If an emulated server is possible, it seems AE would work as well.  The AE editor works in Icon in every capacity except you can't actually play the missions you create.

Azrael

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2014, 03:35:57 PM »
Ok so recently i started a topic about whether or not icon could have combat added into it, and then Ohioknight posted about a idea he had for the emulator. Seeings though the server has to be re created, why don't we make new missions, and it got me thinking maybe he is right. people must have been bored of playing the same missions over and over again, so if we could somehow add new missions to the CoH emulator server, (thats when its done) what missions would you like to see and if you could make a mission, what would it be

Hello alphajaybo.

I read and enjoyed Ohioknight's response.  Because what it indicates is that a lot of pressure is taken off any such emulator.  Most of the fire power of any such effort can be focused on getting the combat, chat window/teaming working via a re-created server and obviously with that A.E functionality would be a natural extension of such an effort.  i.e. giving the tools the community can create 'quality' content.

As for what kind of missions?  You know.  What I thought was a massive missed opportunity in Coh?  The PB/War Shade arcs.  It would be nice to have individually tailored archetype arcs for Tankers, Brutes, Scrappers, Blasters, Defenders, Dominators, Masterminds, Controllers with enemies and content for them to carry them to L50.  I always enjoyed the PS/WS arcs as something that was unique to the PB/WS epic types.

...and have the contact develop with you over the L50 journey.

Azrael.

Ohioknight

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2014, 04:42:54 PM »
The key would be tweaking the AE capability so that not only could the AE missions be placed on the server maps and connected to the contacts in those maps, but to compartmentalize and standardize the files so they could be posted for users to share -- plug and play -- "I'm running RACERx's Atlas Park and I've connected it to Wyldflower's Hollows". 

With standard open-source style inheritance so we could build complete worlds of content each representing dozens of distinct individual contributor's works.

Notice how blithely I'm taking for granted all this development -- that's why I became a requirements analyst... not having to figure out how to actually DO any of this. :)


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Blackshear

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2014, 05:25:04 PM »
Notice how blithely I'm taking for granted all this development -- that's why I became a requirements analyst... not having to figure out how to actually DO any of this. :)

A source code release would, however, be the best possible answer.  Source releases have kept id Software titles like Doom and the Quake series alive and vibrant to this day, for example.  With a source release we could see all manner of custom private servers arise...some would be awful, I'm sure, but others would doubtlessly be brilliant.  Of course, people could also run legacy servers where nothing was altered.  It could be outstanding.

I maintain a secret hope that a former Paragon Studios employee managed to slip out with a copy of the server software and will one day "accidentally" leak it onto the internet...

Azrael

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2014, 05:44:07 PM »
A source code release would, however, be the best possible answer.  Source releases have kept id Software titles like Doom and the Quake series alive and vibrant to this day, for example.  With a source release we could see all manner of custom private servers arise...some would be awful, I'm sure, but others would doubtlessly be brilliant.  Of course, people could also run legacy servers where nothing was altered.  It could be outstanding.

I maintain a secret hope that a former Paragon Studios employee managed to slip out with a copy of the server software and will one day "accidentally" leak it onto the internet...

Out of 40 employees or more...you'd think they'd have the 'Code' to work on at home?  In reality, you'd think the code would be out there somewhere...other than with just NC Soft's backups.  Not that anyone would admit that.  And if they leaked it and it was traced to them...they'd have their posterior sued out of oblivion.  An 'accidental leak.'  Maybe discretion will dictate otherwise.  Even if a secret reverse engineering project had peaked at or had the code itself they'd do well to be quiet about it for obvious reasons.  And even with the 'real' server code I doubt reverse engineering code would be simple.  It's going to take time.  It will be interesting to see where Coh is in two years time...

Source releases for titles like Doom and Quake show how you can foster a community long after the game has 'peaked' in the game fashion shows.  NC Soft could learn from some gaming companies.

As for an open-source inheritance...we can only hope.  Icon offers the beginning of such hope.  While it will never be what we wish it to be...it's an example of what talented people can do.  It's a wonderful gift to the COh community.

If we get a reverse engineered server anything like as easy to use as Icon with a slightly modified AE to plug into map 'mission entrances etc.'  then Coh will live again.  Be interesting to see how much of the Coh community there will be in two years time with a possible convergence of 3-4 Coh style projects all entering a Beta period.

I think Ohioknight paints a possible future for where we may be heading.  I hope so.  With texture modding and even maybe some geometry modding...even maybe some archetype modding.  Who knows.

It's code.  Anything is possible.

I remember back in 1983.  I never thought I'd see the day when 64k would be deemed so tiny it could easily be emulated.  But there are C64 emulators for Mac and PC.  Plug and play more or less.  Load in seconds.  I remember when 'tape' loaders for my C64 took 20-30 minutes!  The 'mod' community produced their own Boulderdash games (such was the games appeal...my all time fav' game.)  30 years later, C64 emulation looks quaint.

I'm sure it won't take quite as long for Coh emulation.  It's a far bigger beast, code wise.  But it's just code at the end of the day.  'Time.'

Azrael.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2014, 05:58:24 PM by Azrael »

Ohioknight

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2014, 06:17:59 PM »
A source code release would, however, be the best possible answer.  Source releases have kept id Software titles like Doom and the Quake series alive and vibrant to this day, for example.  With a source release we could see all manner of custom private servers arise...some would be awful, I'm sure, but others would doubtlessly be brilliant.  Of course, people could also run legacy servers where nothing was altered.  It could be outstanding.

I maintain a secret hope that a former Paragon Studios employee managed to slip out with a copy of the server software and will one day "accidentally" leak it onto the internet...

The last thing you want is their source code. 

First, from all accounts it's a "legacy" mess -- fixes piled on fixes to get things out fast -- nastiness. 

Second, it gives a legal "hook" for ongoing harassment of the whole community.  So long as the reverse engineering is ACTUALLY reverse engineering, it makes legal harassment potentially more dangerous for the "harasser" than the "harassee". 
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Codewalker

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #8 on: January 11, 2014, 08:50:24 PM »
AE is pretty much a non-starter. Even if it were fully functional, the AE interface is so limited that you can't create much more than glorified newspaper missions with it. Forget about anything on the level of what the original task forces had. No, we'll need external tools to create missions and content.

Now, just to throw it out there, something like Lua scripting would be a lot more useful, and might be a good skill to have in the future...

Ohioknight

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2014, 01:50:55 AM »
AE is pretty much a non-starter. Even if it were fully functional, the AE interface is so limited that you can't create much more than glorified newspaper missions with it. Forget about anything on the level of what the original task forces had. No, we'll need external tools to create missions and content.

Now, just to throw it out there, something like Lua scripting would be a lot more useful, and might be a good skill to have in the future...

But you're never going to get the levels of mission creation out of more advanced tools or languages that you can get out of an internal game mission creation user interface.  The ratio of participation by the player community has got to be 100 to one between the two situations -- and the content payoff would be massively better -- especially going down the road. 

But I'm always full of brilliant advice for people who are actually doing work while I carp on the sidelines  :)

(BTW -- I know I haven't said it this year so far so -- THANK YOU for all you have done and may be doing in the future.)
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alphajaybo

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2014, 07:38:51 PM »
AE is pretty much a non-starter. Even if it were fully functional, the AE interface is so limited that you can't create much more than glorified newspaper missions with it. Forget about anything on the level of what the original task forces had. No, we'll need external tools to create missions and content.

Now, just to throw it out there, something like Lua scripting would be a lot more useful, and might be a good skill to have in the future...

Is that a hint to something :P i wonder if we will hear any joshex conspiracies
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Ohioknight

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2014, 10:02:32 PM »
Is that a hint to something?

In my personal interpretation of the comment ... yes.
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Azrael

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2014, 11:40:16 PM »
AE is pretty much a non-starter. Even if it were fully functional, the AE interface is so limited that you can't create much more than glorified newspaper missions with it. Forget about anything on the level of what the original task forces had.

No, we'll need external tools to create missions and content.


*noms on the 'hint.'

Well, I suppose many of the early Coh missions unto L10 weren't that complicated? 

Having said that.  Robust tools to create more thorough missions and content and even extend Coh's original mission capability sounds like a good aspiration.  If that can be made approachable to non-scripters?  Great.  If it can have e.g. scripting tools for the 'code' minded.  Great.

eg.  I remember using Soft Image XSi.  I liked using the standard interface.  However, I could appreciate there were things that you could do with it using script to extend it's capability as a software package.  (I was pants at scripting though...)

I guess that's the point OhioKnight is making.  That Coh was approachable as a game and maybe most fans would like to use tools at a 'certain' level (and that's what P.Studios gave them re: AE...) but clearly the developers had more robust tools.  Maybe both capabilities could be put into 'external' tools to satisfy both approaches.  i.e. easy to knock out some Atlas/'Hollows' up to L10 missions...but also more complex TFs with some scripting involved.

Just inciting debate. ;)

Azrael.

alphajaybo

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #13 on: January 13, 2014, 08:22:00 AM »
I was just thinking about how one Christmas there was a massive snowman who you had to defeat! Hahahahahaha good times!
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Noyjitat

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #14 on: January 13, 2014, 02:18:50 PM »
I gotta say without incarnate trials, the newer tfs and msrs it aint gonna be as fun. I was really getting bored before going rogue. You can only make so many alts before you get bored and you need something besides itfs and stfs and exemplaring.

No sir coh was "the entire experience" for me. It will be great to get a emulator going but the fun wont last if yiou're back to pre going rogue experience. Just wasn't enough to do. It would be like playing champions online which I quickly get bored with in a couple of weeks each time.

Ironwolf

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #15 on: January 13, 2014, 04:31:57 PM »
How about we get a game going first and then criticize it?

Let us say we can get the game running with stable street hunting only - no missions system for 6 months? Great!
I doubt this will hit as a fnished product - I fully expect it to be out in sections. There will be builds come out that reflect differing stages of development.

What I would like is to hash out some of the balance issues we had in the game, why not fix them before they occur?

Noyjitat

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #16 on: January 13, 2014, 05:10:58 PM »
Dont get me wrong I would be most grateful to play again. Im just saying if we go back to the way the game was before it just wouldnt be that much different than playing CO or most any other mmo. Even if we had a better community, CoX had excellent gameplay, story and community. And that complete experience is what made it better than others to me.

As for balance unless you're planning to only make weak sets stronger I'd say leave it alone. Biggest problem we had was powers getting nerfed because in one persons eyes that power was a overpowered but in another persons eyes it was fun. I can tell you that kinda of balancing pisses off more than it makes happy.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2014, 05:16:13 PM by Noyjitat »

alphajaybo

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #17 on: January 13, 2014, 06:21:16 PM »


No sir coh was "the entire experience" for me. It will be great to get a emulator going but the fun wont last if yiou're back to pre going rogue experience. Just wasn't enough to do. It would be like playing champions online which I quickly get bored with in a couple of weeks each time.

I agree on the could get boring fast if the emulator is pre going rogue! however if they do go pre going rogue and get it working, then from then on isnt it just patching the server up to going rogue. if so then It shouldnt be Pre going rogue for long
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Noyjitat

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #18 on: January 13, 2014, 11:20:54 PM »
-Warning some facts and some nerd speculation below, read at your own risk-

Going rogue and on used a different graphics system and when Freedom came out they fixed a client and server side issue that was causing very bad network latency in big fights which at the current time was in big zone events light rikti invasions, hamiraids and msrs.

Anyone else remember the rubberbanding rikti or having to button mash all the time during those to get your powers to even work? They fixed those in preparation for Freedom with all those stress test events we did with Zwillinger

I think its more than just patching clients all those additional systems and features and Zone phasing which was in the newer Atlas Park and the team up teleporter for incarnate trials is yet another new map server feature.

Nemerle has the only publicly known emulator and hes talked about the difficulty of going issue to issue where hes at now perhaps the later "Dark Mirror" issue (I think that was issue 16 going rogue) and on were all coded a bit better but I don't know.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2014, 05:20:18 PM by Noyjitat »

JaguarX

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Re: CoH emulator server
« Reply #19 on: January 14, 2014, 12:24:04 AM »
Dont get me wrong I would be most grateful to play again. Im just saying if we go back to the way the game was before it just wouldnt be that much different than playing CO or most any other mmo. Even if we had a better community, CoX had excellent gameplay, story and community. And that complete experience is what made it better than others to me.

As for balance unless you're planning to only make weak sets stronger I'd say leave it alone. Biggest problem we had was powers getting nerfed because in one persons eyes that power was a overpowered but in another persons eyes it was fun. I can tell you that kinda of balancing pisses off more than it makes happy.

nerfs are always a touchy subject and personally should be very rare and only in extreme cases where it's actually game breaking or messing stuff up. Sometimes what seemed to be balanced during test is unbalanced during live. From what I seen, perceived, right or wrong, what I perceived caused a lot of, say, "discomfort" with nerfs is that when a power is allowed to be in play for so long people get used to it, then it's like someone changing something and thus creates a ripple effect for the player's build. Sometimes it's like cutting wood except opposite. Where in cutting wood it's better to have a piece too long and then shorten it instead of having a piece too short and cant do nothing with it, with nerfs it's best, IMO only, to have a power come up short and buff it than have it too powerful and cut it back later. But sometimes it seems nerfs are unavoidable as things and game dynamics change over the years. But before nerf happens, a serious look into the effect should be considered. If it's nerfed would it affect more people that are simply having fun and no effect on other's gameplay or is it truly something game breaking that shouldn't been there in the first place or is it situational? Remember it's just my opinion and in no way or fashion insinuating or stating that other share or should share or better share this view or this view is a fact.