Independent Online Gaming Network for XB/PS2/GC/PC?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brae, Jan 1, 2003.

  1. Brae

    Brae Supporting Actor

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    Ok, I was talking to a coworker last night as he got an XB for Xmas. I rarely play console games, but PC games are another matter. Still, the only games I am even willing to consider are network games, and I played (an was a beta tester) CS for +2.5 years before retiring it.
    Well, our discussion lat night turned to the aspects of M$ XBlive, which is mirrored with Sony's PS2. Then I got an idea that the non-M$/Sony game manufacturers should unit with a VC (venture capitalist) to create games that can be played online on an independent gaming network that allows people with any relatively new platform (GC/PC/PS2/XB) to play with, or against, one another.
    Yes, I am sure there is financial benefits being taunted by Sony and M$ toward game-makers for exclusive rights and all, but wouldn't it be better to sell online-specific games to all platforms?
    Just a thought. [​IMG]
     
  2. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    First of all, it's impossible to play games online with the X-Box without using the XBL service. You can use XBConnect, which makes the game think you're playing on a LAN when you're really playing online, but that removes all of the added benefits of online-gaming, like updates, downloadable content, live voice-chat, etc.

    Second, the PS2 doesn't require a fee to play games online. You just need to buy the adapter for $40. Some games might have their own fee attached, but only Final Fantasy XI and EverQuest Online Adventures are games that have additional fees (neither of which is out yet in America).

    Third, Sony/MS/Nintendo won't give dev kits and the rights to publish games on their platforms if the developers are going to use another online service that takes potential money away from Sony/MS/Nintendo.

    And fourth, aside from Phantasy Star Online, not many online-only games have sold well or even been made. X-Box Live requires a BB connection, which not many people have, and making a game that requires an add-on to play at all for any console isn't a good idea unless you plan on packing the add-on with the game (like the Memory Expansion with some N64 games or the GunCon with Time Crisis).
     
  3. Brae

    Brae Supporting Actor

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    Morgan:
    First, unless you are about to tell us you are on the XBL development team, let's keep the absolutes out of this discussion. I'm not 'all knowing' and I'm also willing to lay odds you are not either. I would rather have pure speculation than someone try to forward they know beyond a shadow of a doubt without the ability to provide substantial proof to back up their claims. Are you on the XB or XBL development team, or working for one of the game manufacturers producing games for XBL? [​IMG]
    Secondly,
     
  4. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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  5. Dave F

    Dave F Cinematographer

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    Why is it M$ and not $ony?

    -Dave
     
  6. Brae

    Brae Supporting Actor

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    Ok Morgan, I can see you are a true advocate of Sony. But ...
     
  7. Brae

    Brae Supporting Actor

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    Dave, I didn't think of that one! For now on, I will be using $ony! Thanks, man!
     
  8. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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  9. Jay Mitchosky

    Jay Mitchosky Producer

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  10. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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  11. Dean DeMass

    Dean DeMass Screenwriter

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  12. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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  13. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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    I find it amusing that someone complains about Morgan being biased towards Sony whilst using the cliched M$ everywhere...

    I think you severely underestimate the desire of Microsoft/Sony/Nintendo to control the flow of software on their machine & the desire by the major publishers to control who/where network games are played.

    Read the forum here at HTF - you'll see one of the major appeals of XBoxLive & console online gaming is that it's exactly what you're arguing against, Brae: the closed nature of it.

     
  14. Brae

    Brae Supporting Actor

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    BrianB, when Morgan made his comments the impression I got was that of a $ony advocate. I didn't say I thought my impression was 100% accurate--afterall, I'm human and capable of making mistakes. Also, I openly and honestly admitted to not thinking about using $ for the S in Sony, and upon its suggestion thought it was great.
    I do think I should make something quite clear at this point. I have no loyalty to any of the gaming consoles. I do prefer to play games on a PC. I do NOT own a gaming console, but I do not have a local friend that does NOT have one.
    I did not estimate the desires of Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, or Intel in their desires for/against an independent network. My proposal was simple. If, for example, Microsoft (Romier/Dean [​IMG] ), did not wish Halo ported to an independent network then sobeit, but that does not mean a game developer like Sega cannot develop a game that could be played on a SegaNetwork if they chose, and in doing offered to any platform willing to use it.
     
  15. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  16. Brae

    Brae Supporting Actor

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    And I recognize the appeal of being able to have choices in which server I get onto, and having friends also join those specific servers. Out of the thousands of servers I've had available to me, I found myself sticking with only a handful because of the learn behavior patterns of fellow players. That game had the feature where my server had six (or there abouts) servers listed so there was never a problem of getting lost, or having to dig through server lists. Also, it has a feature to where I can add a server or manually specify servers based on criteria (game mod, IP, map, etc.).
    Hey now, those consoles are not without computing in their genes. [​IMG]
     
  17. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  18. JayV

    JayV Supporting Actor

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    An interesting thought exercise, Brae, but I'm with Morgan, Brian, Dave and Romier on this. To wit (sorry, I just like to use "to wit" periodically):

    1. As Morgan pointed out, the manufacturers would prevent a developer from pursuing this. The licensing agreements will prohibit anyone from publishing a game with Sony, Xbox, Nintendo indicia without approval.

    It is also likely that the dev kits were delivered with this restriction.

    2. I suspect that, as you pointed out, someone could find a way to develop a game and publish it for a console with no assistance or approval from the manufacturer.

    What this means, however, is that a publisher would have to be willing to suck up entirely new R&D costs as well as have all of their games be banned from the console. Further, they would also risk a foreseeable legal entanglement with the console manufacturer. This could cause enough delays to destroy a potential market (Bleemcast!).

    And why would a VC firm risk their money on new infrastructure if MS, for example, already provides one? If XBL fails, a publisher might lose a market, but they won't be sitting on infrastructure for a failed online venture.

    To some degree, this already happened to Sega -- and I suspect it's experience serves a lesson to other companies and potential VC types.

    3. Why is it M$ and not $ony?

    4. Whichever is more acceptable, either is way too overused. Based on Elder Romier's instruction, I pledge to make an effort not to use either.

    -j
     
  19. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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    JayV, legally, anyone can publish games for the PS2, XBox or GameCube. They just have to come up with the R&D to work around the copy protection etc & find a way to physically manufacture their disks in such a way they'll boot on plain vanilla (ie unmodifed) consoles.

    This right was upheld in court back in the 80s when Codemasters won a large legal case against Nintendo over the GameGenie.

    The problem is that noone's got a way around those issues yet for the current generation of machines. It needs to be reversed engineered in a completely 'clean room' style environment. Any existing licenced developer can't do this - they have too much inside info. Even the mighty Datel have yet to publish their unlicenced Freeloader disk for the GC. So far, noone's been dumb enough to get caught putting in booting backdoors as Sega did with MIL-CDs on the Dreamcast (which is how Bleemcast worked I believe).
     
  20. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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