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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 6:21 am 
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Obduction Backer

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I think it best not to get into "Cyan's intent" based on a somewhat hastily penned message by Chogon. When Cyan gives out the details of this new phase, it can address such issues at that time. Whether it can truly go the open source route and somehow require and enforce "a guild maintained central hub server" seems dubious. In any case, for the time being, I would rather "Cyan's intent" not become a code phrase for the "right way" v. "wrong way" to do things.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 6:49 am 
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If anyone can bring up a shard, so can GameTap, or Ubisoft, or Microsoft as long as they share their code too. I'm not saying it's likely. I'm just saying it's possible. Something to think about as you make your plans...

You might hear something like this from the top floor of some large concrete and glass building:

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Everything that has transpired has done so according to our design. Your friends, down there in their sanctuary ages, are walking into a trap, as is your underground fleet. It was *we* who allowed the publishers to blame it all on poor revenue generators. We are quite safe from your pitiful little band. An entire region of our best coders awaits them. Oh, I'm afraid our global shard will be quite operational when your friends arrive.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 8:27 am 
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I don't know about the intent of Cyan, or the technical challenges of doing it, but it seems to me that it would be good to be able to link from shard to shard seamlessly from within the game.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:31 pm 
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I am not sure what Cyan has on it's mind about shards, but I know in some of your big online games. There are many servers. When you start the game you go to the server of your choice. Like WOW, you have realms. I Guild Wars you have districts. When you log in, you are put into a district, depending how many are online at the time, there will be a few districts or during special seasonal events, you may have as many as seventy or more servers. But in Guild Wars you are allowed to jump from one district to another with a click. In WOW, if your in one realm and want to go to another, you have to start a new charachter or pay the company a fee to be transferred. You can be in different realms with different char's. I just thought I would give some incite to what some of the big company's do with their online games, for those who never played any of them.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:42 pm 
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Obduction Backer

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Eleri wrote:
In UU, you had shards, and it was impossible to go from one shard to the next without leaving Uru, and then logging back in.

My impression of how MOUL worked, and the information I picked up from what Chogon said here:
Quote:
The MystOnline servers are very scalable and with some open source programmer help, it should be possible to have one shard (shard is not really a good term here) that has many servers, spread over the world but to the user playing, it will look like just one big server. And it should be possible to make them safe and secure.


To me that sounds more like the SL model, where you log in once, and you can go lots of different places, and technically you're moving from server to server, but you can't tell.

Chogon goes on to say:
Quote:
There still will be rogue servers created, which is fine. But with organization by guilds and other fan groups, and good information, UruLive can still be great place to live.


So, it seems that it is Cyan's intent that there be a guild maintained central hub server, that other servers can then network into. And then, on top of that, there can be independent (rogue?! Chogon! Shame on you ;> ) servers, but to reach those, you'd need to log off and on al la UU.

This sounds win-win to me. Structure and QC for those that want it, and other places to go get wild if you want to.


I don't know how you got to where you ended up, Eleri. There's nothing in Chogon's post about a collection of shards, only a collection of servers to make a shard (as per prologue and UU).


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 5:15 pm 
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Obduction Backer

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I have the impression that some people here have different ideas of what the word "shard" means, causing some confusion.

The way I understand it:
  • A shard has a set of ages (and their instances) and a set of avatars, with all their state. Everyone who is on the same shard can meet each other, people on different shards can't. MOUL had one shard (or two, if you count Rehearsal). In the future, since under the open source model nobody can be stopped from starting their own shard, there will be multiple. (But the hope of many, myself included, is that one of them will crystallize out as the "main" shard where the game goes on more or less along the lines of how it would have gone on with Cyan running it.)
  • A shard can be composed of multiple servers. As you link between ages, you may be transferred from one server to another, but you don't notice anything about that. In the future, it's likely that on some shards, these servers will be run by different parties, but they can still be part of the same shard.

Seamlessly linking from shard to shard is not possible by definition, since otherwise they wouldn't be separate shards.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 5:24 pm 
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To add to that - a shard's servers can be anywhere. They're distributed within the shard but communicate with each other on the same internal network (local to that shard).


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 9:33 pm 
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I think Eleri is right on the money. If that isn't what Chogon meant, it quite simply won't matter because unless the license they give the source to us implies there HAS to be only one central vault (not data server, please people, the term 'cyan run data server' is most likely just for download hosting so we can *get* the files, they already said they can't run a server) people WILL result in more than one. The distributed design (back-end shards) will take some work but will happen too, to defray server use for the people hosting.


Of course, it gets confusing when you realize that there's talk about adding something akin to kIRC to the KI, allowing inter-shard chat. Something I whole-heartedly support, myself.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 10:08 pm 
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That's before you get to the shards, Gondar. It's the same as the auth / file / data servers in UU that everybody had to go through first. The portal hasn't been defined yet.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:24 am 
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Personally, the way I see it is like IRC. Each "Uru Shard" is essentially a different "IRC Network".

So, for example, you have the "Undernet Shard".

You can connect to it (generically) by connecting to "irc.undernet.org", which resolves to the IP of a server in a round-robin manner. If you want to get more specific, you could choose "us.undernet.org" (A random server in the US) or "phoenix.az.us.undernet.org" (A specific server). No matter which you connect to, you are still getting onto Undernet.

Then you have the "Dalnet Shard".

Using the same client software, you can also connect to "irc.dal.net" (Or one of it's alternates, in a similar way to Undernet). You will still have an IRC experience, but it will be the way the DalNet owners have decided to run it.

Hopefully, it will also mean that you can have a Mac client, a Linux client and a Windows client that all talk the same "Protocol", and can connect to any Shard you like.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:41 am 
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is this a dumb question. what if the servers all share a common login credential or groups of servers decide to share login credentials like openid?


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:49 am 
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I would like to see a single Auth database for all shards, except possibly a second auth database for those wanting to use the debugging/testing shard for fan Ages.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:15 am 
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I'd guess 1-3 Urus.
It takes a lot to run a game.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:21 am 
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I'm going with 731. How many of those will be publicly accessible is the bigger question.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2008 1:54 am 
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How many URUs can one standard gigabite hard drive hold?

When you first downloaded the game in MO:UL the data took up several gigabites. Each Age addition added more. If in order to "visit" two or more different shards you have to download the same amount of data as we did for MO:UL each time then I can see myself being forced to choose/play just one shard. Personally I don't want that. I want to be able to go into the Cavern like we did in MO:UL and meet folks from all over the world. I would like access to all the Ages available to me through one Relto bookshelf and Nexus. Of course it stands to reason that to manage my hard drive space I would also be able to delete completely any Age I choose in order to make room for something new. I want to see all the different stories and ages that this community can come up with - but there is only so much hard drive space that I have available and I can't have it taken up with duplicate data just so I can visit different shards.

How this conumdrum can be solved - if in deed it can be - will have to rest with smarter computer folks then me. I just hope that it will be a unifying solution - not a divisive one.

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