Author Topic: Online social roguelike  (Read 2703 times)

Omnivore

  • Bishop
  • ***
  • Posts: 152
    • View Profile
Online social roguelike
« on: June 16, 2014, 07:42:54 AM »
Hard to find a good name for this concept that doesn't evoke misunderstandings. 

We have roguelikes that are played through telnet sharing with central bones and scores.   We have at least one roguelike (ToME) with built in chat channel.  Then there are the roguelike MUD/MOO games, at least one (Wayfar) that I'm aware of.  These are the successes.  Then there are the, well put bluntly, failures, the many attempts at multiplayer roguelikes that have never gotten very far. 

What about combining a persistent coffee player roguelike (short sessions) in a MUD-like text adventure overworld, with a chat lounge and various other MUD social niceities?  Shared bones files of course, perhaps other ways of leaving evidence of your passage for others to encounter?  How about being able to save logs of your session and share them with others? 

I'm thinking of a science fiction theme; a lost fleet (Battlestar Galactica etc) taking the place of a home town.  A MUD/Text Adventure/MOO like star system navigation interface taking the place of a world map.  A coffee break flavored (DoomRL-ish) roguelike game for exploring points of interest such as abandoned? asteroid bases, habitats, underground planetary bases, etc.

Your character would persist between 'serious' play sessions of dungeon delving, you could hang out in the MUD lounge chat with other players, share replays of your mission with others, watch replays, etc.  Players could (hopefully) participate in creation of new content, perhaps entirely through an online building interface. 

Thoughts?  Oh and first time poster here, been lurking awhile, and only have one somewhat playable roguelike to my credit: Snapshot https://bitbucket.org/blprice61/snapshot - hey it has grenades lol.

Brian aka Omnivore

[EDIT: woops had wayward and wayfar mixed up sorry]
« Last Edit: June 16, 2014, 09:57:09 AM by Omnivore »

jim

  • High Priest
  • ****
  • Posts: 363
    • View Profile
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2014, 03:47:12 PM »
Hi Brian, your idea brings to mind early BBS door games such as Planets and Land of Devastation. The control in place was a daily turn limit. Many modern browser / iOS games also impose a turn limit, but the modern iterations seem to have the turn limit in place solely so that players can get frustrated and shell out $3.99 to buy more turns.

The early games gave you enough turns to enjoy a "full session" of gameplay while ensuring that the most powerful characters weren't automatically those whose players simply had the most free time. And, of course, there were messages, player-created bases with passwords that could be shared, trading between players, duels, teams, engravings left in stone pillars in the middle of the wasteland, etc. Quite a lot of fun, and I think that incorporating social elements like these into the wider roguelike scope could truly be a recipe for success. I would enjoy it a great deal provided that the game was there, at least.

Zireael

  • Protector of the @
  • *****
  • Posts: 592
    • View Profile
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2014, 07:12:03 AM »
This sounds like a cool idea, but it needs other stuff to draw the playerbase in. Anything online and social won't get far without the playerbase.

jim

  • High Priest
  • ****
  • Posts: 363
    • View Profile
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2014, 07:07:00 PM »
One thing that occurred to me later was that an online social roguelike would lend itself well to asynchronous multiplayer. You've had your daily play, but you can rent out your surviving hero to another intrepid adventurer for a share of the rewards. Would be cool.

Eben

  • High Priest
  • ****
  • Posts: 339
  • Controversializer
    • View Profile
    • SquidPony!
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2014, 06:48:04 PM »
One thing that occurred to me later was that an online social roguelike would lend itself well to asynchronous multiplayer. You've had your daily play, but you can rent out your surviving hero to another intrepid adventurer for a share of the rewards. Would be cool.

Something very similar to this happens in Dragon's Dogma and works quite well.

Slash

  • Priest of Roguetemple
  • Administrator
  • Protector of the @
  • *****
  • Posts: 1123
    • View Profile
    • Slashie.net
    • Email
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2015, 04:43:32 AM »
I'm including some of this stuff in Ananias Gold :)

elwin

  • Priest
  • **
  • Posts: 92
    • View Profile
    • Roguelike Gallery
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2015, 07:53:43 PM »
That's a neat idea. It would make it a lot simpler to talk about playing, without needing to jump back and forth from game window to IRC to ttyrec viewer.

If the "overworld" didn't affect the play, it might be possible to integrate it with existing roguelikes without unbalancing them. But if it did, the games could be more interesting, if they were designed properly.
Roguelike Gallery: play Rogue online.  SSH or in browser.

vultures

  • Acolyte
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • The Causeway
    • Email
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2015, 07:01:38 PM »
I don't wanna be lighthearted nor do I wanna encourage you; the thing about your idea is simply - appealing on so many levels.
And now what? :)

We've all heard about so many different indie titles. I don't wanna imply any royalties are bound to their names, simply because those are not lucrative businesses. Altough MMO is the coalmine of the present, I agree on jim's assessment regarding decades old MUDs at the internet's counterpart - your neighbor's BBS. Recalling that, I can only picture them as brilliant and fun - and even though from today's perspective that opinion "ain't for real" , MUDs were ahead of their lifespan and are stuck to just as many hearts as you can imagine.

Now, let's look at that difficulty curve from current perspective. The way I perceive it, majority of indie titles follow this logic:
Challenge --> Modding --> Expansion --> Modding --> Challenge --> Modding --> Expansion --> ...
This obviously lacks structure and flair.

That MMO game that's in my mind now, the one you've begun with, would have to feature a much better equasion; only then should an average RL player attempt to solve the problem that the proposed game has to offer. Instead of playing one RL title on his desktop and another two indie (or $$) MMOs online, he would probably leap into a dungeon to solve with his friends.
Let's expand on UnReal World, shall we? It's a perfect setting for a community-driven game. Tribes, territories, complex skills and simple economy revolving around items and services - you could easily drop 100+ players into this nordic setting. I asked myself more than once - why isn't it the case with this game, why isn't it spinned and made into multi-fun?
Can anyone on RT answer this question?
If I was to pick another MP or MMO title, with or without a leash keeping it with a social network, the answer would've been fairly simple - someone had an idea how the game would look like right at the instance when it reaches the optimal number of participants. So, what are those players doing in "our MUD re-creation" six months from its release? Are they joining efforts to overcome an obstacle on so many levels that it can be tracked only via XP pool, or are they slamming into 99th dungeon level, spawning for the fifteenth time on the surface? Are they flooding their IM for someone to give them a hand in-game, or are they starting to grind resources simply because they've bailed out of that same effort?
It's not a murky, torch-lit vision of yet-to-come mediocre game title; it's a note to anyone's attempt towards designing a challenging, effective, branching difficulty curve which exists just because the game is in essence a MMO roleplay.

Omnivore

  • Bishop
  • ***
  • Posts: 152
    • View Profile
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2015, 08:16:48 AM »
Definitely some different takes on the idea :)

What I'm envisioning is a single player roguelike game that has an online social aspect, not a multiplayer game.  While I do envision some aspects of the online social environment being akin to MUD's or BBS's, that does not make it an online multiplayer game in any direct sense. 

I've played multiplayer online games that end up being a singleplayer online with a chat channel and a shared market.  I'm not too keen on the shared market portion; anything like that gets into having to deal with the abuse and cheating aspects which I consider NP complete problems.  In fact, after two decades of multiplayer gaming online, I'm pretty much bored with MMO's in general; due to the lack of depth in the game, difficulty levels that go from least common denominator 'play while sleeping' to geographical location and hardware dependent 'no life social clubs' (in the same games no less!), and a general commercial bias toward milking whales which I find abominable.  Add in the general lack of procedural generated content giving rise to endless grinding of the same old same old, physics limitations combining with human nature to limit gameplay design to a narrow scope which has all of them feeling pretty much the same past newbie land, and bleh.

So no, I'm not interested in creating a new MMO-{insert flavor here} title.  I am interested in exploring the combination of online social gaming with single player roguelike games but stopping short of multiplayer.  There have been some good suggestions and ideas presented in this thread which go hand in hand with that concept.

To answer, at least my perception of, why UnReal World (for example) hasn't gone this route (or the multiplayer online route); I believe it is rather difficult to patch into an existing game.  I know true multiplayer is almost impossible to patch into any non-trivial single player game - way too many differences in architecture from start to finish.  I'm pretty sure its easier, but still far from being easy or trivial, to patch the online social concept into an existing game.

Playback capability and verifiable, exchangeable, ghost files pretty much have to be designed into a game from the start.  Any online socializing while playing the game requires a rework of the interface at the very least.  Online content creation (adding items, mobs, partial maps, etc) requires quite a bit of work as well, not just to support the online interface, but also to add boundary condition checking so that the game is enhanced rather than distorted by the added content.  Granted you could implement some sort of peer and administrative review of submitted content - but it would be nice if at least part of it could be automated as well as presented as clear boundary conditions to the users.

I believe Ananias Gold, ToME, and telnet capable traditional RLs are all paving the way for expansion of the ideas.   Hopefully my current project will someday (get finished enough to release!!) be added to the examples.

To answer 'what are the players doing at time x down the road?' question, play ToME and imagine that some of the additional capabilities discussed in this thread have been added to the already thriving online chat during play.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2015, 10:08:49 AM by Omnivore »

vultures

  • Acolyte
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • The Causeway
    • Email
Re: Online social roguelike
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2015, 08:45:25 PM »
I think I get your views, and have respect for 'em. Naturally, I'm a bit dazzled with a few points - but not 'cause I plainly disagree:
Quote from: Omnivore
...  Add in the general lack of procedural generated content giving rise to endless grinding of the same old same old, physics limitations combining with human nature to limit gameplay design to a narrow scope which has all of them feeling pretty much the same past newbie land, and bleh.

As for most retro-culture fans, it keeps bugging me where the skin broke and, if I may express myself, "people steered their view off great value in simple things and begun their appreciation towards what is merely superficial".
Then I remembered - people are not all that smart. And, the world is indeed a vast and complicated place.

Just to be sure, the web interface which was perfected by the end of 90s wasn't meant for entertainment needs. The way I see it, and I admit being gravely subjective on this matter, it matched both computer capabilities and people's habbits, respectively. Many adopted the blunt, comformist resolve - it defined what internet was made for. Then, a hobby-worth of dungeon crawling simply haven't evolved along. Needless to say how I've proven your very point, people started paying for "magic internet beans" simply because they were eager to find out what the heck everyone's been talking about.

Calling it for now, and simply because I didn't get to be the one who "says everything" - besides getting my head around dipping into ToMe some more, I wish this topic many ideas redone and good memories recalled.