New Online Uplink(Hacking Simulator) Attempt

Ideas for future addons and sequels

Moderators: bert_the_turtle, jelco, Chris, Icepick, Rkiver, Punisher Bass

Krid
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Postby Krid » Sat Sep 23, 2006 2:24 pm

Generally speaking, words like "Hacking" and "Simulator" tend to draw the wrong kind of attention.

A proper name, even just a development one to be changed later, is a vastly better choice than a descriptive one. Call it something like "Spike'd: Hollywood Kraken" at least
Digital-NW
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Postby Digital-NW » Sat Sep 23, 2006 7:48 pm

I agree, I just couldn't think of what to call it until we decided on a name. I probably will change the name sometime today now that I can think a little more clear-minded.

The ideas with Flash (especially the 3D Aspect) and Java are good, unfortunatly I have very limited experience in those fields. And, from what I understand from general usage, JAVA and Flash tend to use a lot of processing power where as (browser aside) ajax and html don't.

I will say, that I think the general concensus is to stay away from even looking @ Introversion's code. I have the devcd, but the more we stay in the "inspired by" motif, the better off we are.

Even if you do not feel like you could contribute heavily as a programmer of any sorts, I'd still say you should think about joining up to help out with mockups, modeling, and gameplay/back-end ideas. I mean, just from this topic, you have brought up some valid points that I have definatly taken into concideration.

Edit: Changed the name by your suggestion :-"
Krid
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Postby Krid » Sat Sep 23, 2006 8:33 pm

I think IV has basically established that it's OK to use their code as long as it doesn't compete with them, and since they've established that they don't intend to create a multiplayer version that would seem to suggest that such a mod would be legit. The only real problem with licensing and copyright disputes is when you go for a standalone release.

While it's functionally impractical to check to insure that they have a copy of Uplink with flash (Where the code wouldn't be useful at all to begin with), it's not difficult at all to check if they have a legit copy in Java (Where porting some code becomes concievable). In C++, where the most code can be used as a base, it's simple to insure that they have Uplink installed - just install to the uplink folder and use it's data files.

Also, I think you should go through the forums and look at all the projects which have set out to attempt this very thing; see what ideas they have, and see what went wrong.
Digital-NW
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Postby Digital-NW » Sat Sep 23, 2006 9:45 pm

A java clone is still currently under development here: http://forums.introversion.co.uk/uplink ... hp?t=35578 I'm sure that those developers would rather have people join them rather than trying to compete. Heck, more project members makes a project more likely to succeed in most cases anyway.

I think our ultimate goal is to not be another uplink multiplayer, but to become something of our own while still embodying a lot of the ideas uplink presented. From that, if we wanted to compete, distribute, or things not allowed under the developer's license, it is best that we do not use any of their code. Additionally, I'm the only one (that I know of) that actually has a developer's cd in the current group. The license doesn't even allow me to give others access to such code. I'm sure that there could be work arounds for this (NDA's and agreements from IV), but, given the age of this group, I don't think that complicating things with that would be a viable idea at this time. If not, we are then talking about investing money in to this that I'm not sure all of us have.

All in all, I think it would be fun to try and push AJAX "balls to the walls" and see just how serious all of this talk about how great it is at creating live web applications so similar to a program that it is almost unrecognisable. I mean, that is a lot of AJAX's claim to fame isn't it? I've hardly seen any serious apps come from it. Mostly just silly little things like no page refreshes for clicking links and posting forms (obviously not all encompassing, just making a point).
nebulos_one
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Digital-NW Is Right

Postby nebulos_one » Sat Sep 23, 2006 11:59 pm

Digital-NW hit the nail on the head. This project isn't intended to simply be a re-hash of existing C code. The idea is to build a true "Multiuser" system that is platform independant from the ground up. It's planned to carry on the legacy of Uplink, not simply copy/paste and modify the base code.

Re,
Nebulos_One
Krid
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Postby Krid » Sun Sep 24, 2006 12:31 am

Digital-NW wrote:A java clone is still currently under development here: http://forums.introversion.co.uk/uplink ... hp?t=35578 I'm sure that those developers would rather have people join them rather than trying to compete. Heck, more project members makes a project more likely to succeed in most cases anyway.


Then perhaps it would be better to join their project than start a new one? ^^

Digital-NW wrote:I think our ultimate goal is to not be another uplink multiplayer, but to become something of our own while still embodying a lot of the ideas uplink presented.


The ultimate goal is the journey to the 'final' product.
What I'd do is I would keep as much of Uplink as I could to start off with, and then start adding on to it and altering things as needed.

For example, uplink has remnants in it for cooling and power upgrades, and I think single machine multi-monitor mode would be a useful ability. After that, you could add-in mass storage devices, new security devices, the ability to break agents out of jail, the ability to get arrested and later be broken out, a functional stock market, the ability to damage or destroy a company through gross damage and/or having portions of their workforce arrested, etc...

Perhaps one day you could do coop hacks; missions too complicated for a single person, where multiple agents are needed to get the tasks done (Complex LANs, coordinated multi-system strikes, etc...)

Digital-NW wrote:From that, if we wanted to compete, distribute, or things not allowed under the developer's license, it is best that we do not use any of their code.


The steam release added some time to the game's lifecycle, but it's not going to make them money forever. This is something that has to be talked-out with IV, but they seem to have an 'information wants to be free' bent; I can't see them taking a draconian stance on a release.

nebulos_one wrote:Digital-NW hit the nail on the head. This project isn't intended to simply be a re-hash of existing C code. The idea is to build a true "Multiuser" system that is platform independant from the ground up. It's planned to carry on the legacy of Uplink, not simply copy/paste and modify the base code.


There's a big difference between a rehash copy/paste job and reusing code. There's over 100,000 lines of it, much of which is taken up by things like rendering and other facets that really have to be there anyway. It makes more sense to strip out what you want to replace and build from there than it does to start over.
Digital-NW
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Postby Digital-NW » Sun Sep 24, 2006 3:06 am

I totally understand what you are saying Krid, but as I said, neither I nor anyone currently in the group has enough experience programming in either Java or C++. I agreed that the best alternative is exactly what you have been pressing. I just don't see how we could possibly do so given the experiences at hand. :/
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FORUM ADDRESS UPDATE

Postby nebulos_one » Mon Sep 25, 2006 3:37 am

Currently, we're in the process of putting the new forum together. It is now ready for use, though there still may be some minor permission problems to sort out.

I received a couple of requests to simplify the link to the forum. The link is now simply http://www.hacksim.metalaxe.com/ - This is a simple front page with a forum link in the left hand column. This is still a temp. name until a proper name for the project is decided.

Anybody interested in joining should click the above address, the more members in the group the more successful we are likely to be.

Regards,
Nebulos_One
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PROJECT UPDATE

Postby nebulos_one » Thu Sep 28, 2006 2:43 am

*** PROJECT UPDATE ***
http://www.hacksim.metalaxe.com/

This is just a quick note regarding this project, we're starting to get things underway.

The project has now moved out of the "concept" phase and is entering the "design" phase. The group has now grown to 8 members, 5 of which have been given developer status and will be activly developing the game project trying to bring an Online Hacking Sim to life. We have also assigned a website administrator and graphic deseigner to put together a project website, and currently have 3 servers to manage the project (1 for public material, 1 for development, and 1 to act as a backup).

All this has been through donations of server space, bandwidth, and time for our groups members.

The domain name currently is http://www.hacksim.metalaxe.com/ - This is the portal site for the forum, click the forum link on the left to enter. This will be changing once the website comes online.

We've fixed up the permission issues regarding the forum, more information is now available to public users. If you love Uplink and are looking for another Hacking Sim worthy of giving a try in the future, or want to contribute some time to building this new game, please look at the forums and sign up. We're always looking for new members and developers to help out and spread the word!

Regards,
Nebulos_One
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Postby Davman » Fri Sep 29, 2006 12:48 pm

coolsi wrote:The problem is there have been many, many attempts at making 'Uplink Online' and none of them have got off the ground.


This is simply not true. http://www.bytelink.org is off the ground. I'd say we are hovering a good 2 centimeters above the ground. I say good luck to him, we all need all the encouragement we can get to make such a huge project work.
Davman
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Postby TrueADM » Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:07 am

Davman wrote:
coolsi wrote:The problem is there have been many, many attempts at making 'Uplink Online' and none of them have got off the ground.


This is simply not true. http://www.bytelink.org is off the ground. I'd say we are hovering a good 2 centimeters above the ground. I say good luck to him, we all need all the encouragement we can get to make such a huge project work.


I agree with this, Nanobyte Online is also off the ground (http://www.adm-studios.com, and Nanobyte Online isn't exactly some vapourware VB game, it's a full online DirectX9 C# game. People need to realize that it takes time to make great games, especially with a small development team. So anyone undertaking this project, as I am doing, I wish you luck. If you need any help, just ask on the ADM Studios forum (in the link above).
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Thanks For The Confidence Vote!

Postby nebulos_one » Mon Oct 02, 2006 3:26 am

TrueADM/Davman - Thanks for the vote of confidence, it's well apprecaited by everybody who is know apart of the my project.

We've got quite a few people on now, a few developers, a website admin, a couple of graphic designers, and a couple of database admins.

We're currently deciding on the best technology for putting together the GUI frontend, we've all got ideas at the moment and they're all being put forward. We're also looking at a way to get around the network limitations of javascript/html (no persistant connections or incoming connections). Once we sort this stuff out, we'll be able to make a start. Surprisingly, we still haven't got a name yet! When we sort this out, I'll be sure to post what we're calling ourselves.

Thanks again.
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Postby Davman » Tue Oct 03, 2006 2:05 pm

While I hate to post technical ideas on this forum (because I will no doubt be shot down if my idea is in the slightest way incorrect), neither do I want to register for your forum! Far too many forum registrations for me to look after these days.

Every time I've written an app that requires incoming connections, but is usually blocked in some way (either by firewall or language restriction), the solution I tend to come up with is polling.

When a client wants to make a connection to another client, it connects to the server, and tells it that it wants to initiate a connection. The server then remembers this as a pending connection.

Every so often another client polls the server and asks if there are any incoming connections pending for itself. If something is pending, the client uses the server as a mid-point. When the other client (that initiated the incoming connection) re-polls the server, the server notifies it that a connection is ready, and then the client sends the data it would usually send to another client to the server. The server then forwards the data to the other client (that did the first poll).

I'm aware this is:

A) Long winded
B) Inefficient
C) Not-scalable.

but it might be your best bet if your language is restrictive. I think this is basically what Skype does to get around firewalls, except it uses other people's PC's as supernodes, rather than centralised servers.

Hope this helps.
Davman
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Postby Davman » Tue Oct 03, 2006 2:06 pm

TrueADM wrote: and Nanobyte Online isn't exactly some vapourware VB game,


What are you trying to say? :P ;)
Davman
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Postby TrueADM » Tue Oct 03, 2006 4:35 pm

Davman wrote:
TrueADM wrote: and Nanobyte Online isn't exactly some vapourware VB game,


What are you trying to say? :P ;)


Wasn't directed at you, just at the previous attempts I've seen around the community. :)

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