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Re: [gopher] This game I have been working on might be of interest to Gopherites...

Holy hell Kevin you can write!
(PS: I don't enjoy reading looong articles/messages!)

One thing; please pick a better/different front on the Web UI.
(Being visually impaired reading that font it quite hard!)

Not really sure what the "goal of the game" is as such
perhaps you can give a quick run-down of what to expect?

Look forward to BETA codes.


On Mon, Feb 9, 2015 at 11:49 AM, Kevin Veroneau <kevin@veroneau.net> wrote:
Hello fellow Gopherlings!

  I believe you might have recalled that I brought up and we all briefly
discussed the possible development of a MUD made by us Gopherians.  Well, long
before I even had such an ill conceived idea that would ultimately never come
into fruition.  I was working on a Massively Multiplayer Online Hacking
Universe Game, or shortened to just MMOHUG.  You won't find this MMO genre
type anywhere yet, as I am hoping that mine will be the first to market!
Although I have been working on it since 2012, and it has gone through a
couple complete redesigns, I feel that now the game is taking the right
direction.  Originally, it was going to be a web-based game, but I noticed
that this market was already crowded and noticed the vast inferiority of web-
based games in general.  In order to build real-time apps and games on a
website, you needed some rather complex code, both in the front-end and the
back-end...  This led me to rewrite the game completely using standard
stdin/stdout terminal programming in Python.  This version of the game
actually came along ways until I realized how it wouldn't scale very well.
You see, each user would log in via a standard telnet connection, and telnetd
forks the actual application I wrote.  For each connected player, the amount
of resources grow!  If I really wanted to take the game into the MMO type
category, I needed to slim down the server component alot!

  Now the server side is entirely written and listens on a TCP port directly,
no forking needed.  I wrote a couple threads to manage some in-game stuff, but
that's about it.  The game currently is about 10MB of RAM when idle, which is
pretty good.  Each new connection doesn't increase the total size by much, as
each player's persistent state doesn't take very much memory or resources.
This also has the benefit of me being able to write a custom telnet client to
make the game more appealing to those who don't want to use telnet, or my web-
based terminal app.

  Anyways, the point of this message is that, I believe this type of MMO/MUD
game would appeal to most users of this mailing list.  It's a very technical
game overall, and mostly fiction, but with some real-world elements to make it
feel real enough for people who haven't hacked before.  By far, it feels way
more realistic then that crap Ubisoft released last year, what's what game
called again....

  I personally like a hacking type game with a nice barrier between fiction
and reality.  This is the type of atmosphere I am building with Hacker's Edge.
The game feels real, and makes you actually feel like your hacking into
computer systems, but is purely fiction.  It uses real-world elements, like
IPv4, DNS, SMTP, and other popular Internet technologies.  Many commands which
are used by real hackers are also used, but watered down to make it easy
enough to pick up and play without feeling tedious.  Most commands like "nmap"
and "nslookup" require a good amount of research to understand their many
options.  Hacker's Edge uses such commands, but they aren't as complex, so the
player doesn't need to enter in a dozen options everytime they want to map
ports on a remote host.

  The game is going into closed beta soon, so that I can get people to test
out the commands and the general feel of the game to give me their feedback.

  One of the games highlights will be user created content in the forms of
real functioning binary applications that run within the game world.  The game
will include a compiler for a somewhat simple to use and understand dialect
that gives players the ability to hook directly into the game's engine to
create new types of servers and hacking programs that can be sold to other
players using the in-game economy.  In my last implementation of the in-game
coding, the dialect was very close to assembly language, while this felt
really realistic, it was too complex to just jump into for most players. I
first attempted to build a high-level language on top of that, which compiled
into the in-game assembly, but that was too limiting.  This new and final
version of the game will include a programming dialect that is easy to use and
understand, yet powerful.  Using this, it should be technically possible to
build in-game Gopher servers and clients.  While no in-game apps will have
access to the real Internet, apps can communicate using the in-game simulated

  Anyways, for more information, you can visit the game's homepage in the HTTP
space here: http://www.hackers-edge.com/  If there is enough interest from the
Gopher community here, I may consider setting up a Gopherhole for the game as
well, so that all the same information from the HTTP version can be accessed
from Gopher as well.  However, you can currently view and post into the forums
from within the game using the +bboard, +thread, and +reply commands.  Hooks
into the HelpCenter will also be added soon too.

  I am planning on distributing Beta invite codes very soon, so do let me know
if your interested and I will send out a few codes onto this mailing list.
Each code is a one use code, so take them before somebody else does.  I am
limiting initial access to consider performance and overall server load.

Best Regards,
  Kevin Veroneau
  Telnet: veroneau.net:5199

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