Everyone, pull out your annoyed hats, but listen

General discussions about the games by Egosoft including X-BTF, XT, X², X³: Reunion, X³: Terran Conflict and X³: Albion Prelude.

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Post by JoeVN09 » Sat, 2. May 09, 09:45

I think the point that a lot of people are making, that the OP seems to be missing, is that in order to facilitate the changes that would be necessary in multiplayer (e.g. the SETA scripting, IS/OOS combat, AI, system requirements) you wouldn't be able to package the multiplayer and the single player together because of the fundamental differences to the game code.

For this reason, even if Egosoft was able to find the funds for a multiplayer element to X, it would have to stand as a game on its own.

Personally, I'd prefer for Egosoft to focus on continuing to improve and refine the great single player experience they've already made. :)

@Chealec: I also have a Bravia and I had no idea I could do that with it :P
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Post by arcana75 » Sun, 3. May 09, 02:59

A multiplayer X game will in time become EVE Online, together with its host of problems, social and technical.

Part of the appeal with X is that not only is it a great modding sandbox, I think the fact is most of us can get to enjoy a good pseudo-online sandbox without having to deal with anonymous people online, and we secretly love that.

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Post by Chealec » Sun, 3. May 09, 10:24

arcana75 wrote:...a good pseudo-online sandbox without having to deal with anonymous people online, and we secretly love that.
No... I blatantly love it :)
To steal a line from Sartre, "Hell is other people".

... old skool

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X3:TC In Second Life - Just a matter of interest

Post by Tanooshman » Sun, 10. May 09, 17:12

Second Life is a script driven MMO Virtual Grid available without charge that will support the recreation of X3 objects (ships, stations, factories).

While there are some limitations (256M x256M and something called "prims") creative folk have achieved remarkable accomplishments of scale.

and it's the only place I know you can start with nothing, and actually pull real life dollars OUT!

The GRID (basic design and engine of Second Life) is open source - so there could be a separate virtual world using it just for X3.

I should probably think out a separate thread.

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Post by Elucca » Mon, 11. May 09, 02:43

I see two choices, and that's assuming Egosoft has the resources.

A) The game would be very different. Not necessarily a bad thing, mind, but in anything resembling its current state, multiplayer wouldn't be viable. It would need to be fairly persistent for people to want to invest all that time, and due to this it would have to be slower and the universe bigger, closer to what EVE is, though still smaller in scale. Instead of a monthly fee, you'd have players hosting the games on persistent servers. Egosoft could chuck in a few if they can afford it. It'd effectively be what multiplayer RPGs are to MMORPGs.

B) It'd be small scale, to be played with a friend or three. Considerably less changes would have to be done. SETA, obviously, would have to be replaced, but things like destroying the other player's stations or blocking jumpgates shouldn't be major issues.

As for why the games aren't as popular as those Mikro listed, the thing they have in common is that they all belong to popular genres. X doesn't. Still, I have to agree part of it is due to Egosoft games' condition at release. It's never good for sales if your customers have to wait for weeks or months to be able to play the game properly, and it will show on reviews.

There's also a general lack of polish. Us fans can let it slide since we like the game so much, but I can totally see why someone wouldn't want to play TC due to its larger-than-usual share of flaws.

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Post by 4d » Mon, 11. May 09, 16:35

Several people in this thread seem to believe that single player is dead - or not profitable. Such is a moronic stance to go with moronic arguments.

Look at, say, STALKER - hugely succesful as PC games go, and with one of the most atmospheric of single player experiences. It has some multiplayer - to some extrememly limited extent (Deathmatch, I presume - a mockery of the main game) that I have never tried - for you could never pull off the fantastic sandbox world that is the Zone in a multiplayer game while preserving ever nuance that makes the experience special.

Resident Evil's main line of games, utterly single player - until very recently (with the poor introduction of limited multiplayer in RE5) has made Capcom collective millions upon millions.

Fallout 3, like Oblivion (though I like neither) were made with no multiplayer whatsoever for much the same reasons that STALKER could not work in such a format.

And MMORPGs tend to be a bore. I do not enjoy monotonous tasks, nor being a faceless number amongst the masses in my games. If you're so desperate for an online space sim, go and play EVE. And enjoy your grind.
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Post by MegaJohnny » Mon, 11. May 09, 17:22

Egosoft don't have the money. And besides it would be better if they kept improving the single player instead of slapping on multiplayer.

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Post by CBJ » Mon, 11. May 09, 18:08

Here we go again. I think I'm going to answer this FAQ-style this time, to save a lot of quoting, and maybe give people something to link back to for future reference.

Q. Why has there been no multi-player mode in an X-series game to date?
A. Ignore all technical arguments you see. Most of them have never been an issue, and some were only relevant years ago when the idea was first mooted. Only a few present serious challenges and none of them are insurmountable with sufficient development. However, that brings us to the real reason there is no multi-player: because the money to undertake that development has never been available.

Q. Why don't Egosoft just go out and get the money?
A. You don't really have much experience business financing, do you? Game development is a relatively risky business. You can't just go out and ask a bank for cash for a development project lasting two years or more without detailed market research that clearly shows the returns they are likely to get; they will laugh in your face. Market research and funding game development is what of publishers do. They spend lots of money carefully assessing the market to find out what will sell and choose development projects accordingly. They also spread their risk across several developers to balance potential losses against potential profits. In order to make that system work, publishers have to take tough decisions about what games to finance, and what features within those games, and clearly so far no publisher has decided that the relatively high cost of developing multi-player functionality for the X series is something that would be sufficiently profitable to be worth financing.

Q. Surely it can't be that expensive: what about a "simple" LAN-based multi-player implementation?
A. Multi-player doesn't come cheap. There are degrees of complexity, of course, but there is no such thing as a "simple" multi-player implementation. If you think you've come up with a clever way of making the development cost cheaper then think again. The only suggestions I've seen that could genuinely achieve this would also result in a form of multi-player that most people would barely recognise as worthy of the name. And that LAN-based idea? It solves nothing; in fact it makes matters worse. MMOs mostly make their money from subscription charges, which over time can add up to many times higher than the cost of a single game box. The only way a LAN-based game would be likely to happen would be as a side-effect of the development of an MMO game, or as a stepping stone on the way to one. Why? Because profit from additional sales of a LAN-based game over and above the sales that would be made with just single-player functionality, couldn't possibly hope to pay back the cost of developing the multi-player element. You don't need to take my word for it: if it were a profitable model then you can be pretty sure there'd have been a Freelancer 2 by now!

Q. But what about all the people who would play the game if it were multi-player? Surely the extra sales would solve the problem?
A. I'm afraid a handful of your friends don't constitute market research. The reality is that the market for space trading/combat games is finite, and it's considerably smaller than that for FPSs or RPGs. How big is that market? I don't know; I'm not a marketeer, but it shouldn't be too hard to Google for the relative active gamer base sizes for representative games in each genre. The same figures can also be used to further confirm what was said before about LAN-based games and the potential additional income they'd generate. Numerous polls on this forum have also shown that many existing fans would be put off by a multi-player element. You can argue all you like about how great you think multi-player would be, but these people disagree, which in turn cuts down the numbers.

Q. Why are these people so hostile to the idea?
A. You seem to be forgetting that time and money (actually they are effectively the same thing in business terms, but let's keep mentioning both so that people don't forget either of them) are finite. Time and money spent on one feature is time and money that can't be spent on something else. And "do both" isn't an option, because that puts up the overall cost of development meaning that you have to sell many, many more copies of the game to make any profit. So all the people saying they don't want multi-player aren't missing the point or being churlish. What they are really saying is that they want that time and money to be spent on something else that will benefit them, the single-player fans.

Q. So will there ever be a multi-player X-series game?
A. It has always been Egosoft's intention to create one. Every successful single-player X-series game contributes to the chances of that happening. The trick will be to find the right way to present it so that publishers want to fund it, and the right way to develop it so that single-player fans don't suffer. In my personal opinion (and it is just that: a personal opinion, not a statement, official or otherwise) Egosoft is in a better position to do both than they've ever been, and if things continue to go well then multi-player may yet see the light of day.

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Post by s_mak » Mon, 11. May 09, 19:08

Jumpgate Evolution is coming out in a few months, I think it might even be as soon as this September. Anyone want multiplayer twitch combat of the Freespace/Freelancer variety, well you don't have to wait long. If you want to do combat while in flight, and don't want to do it in space, but want the World of Warcraft setting, there is Aion Tower of Eternity coming out soon too.

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Post by paul1290 » Tue, 12. May 09, 03:20

I would love to have multiplayer in X3, especially LAN play with a handful of players.

However, I would hate to see it turn into an MMO, at least not the way MMOs are now.

A lot of people are going to hate me for stating this unpopular opinion, but I'm going to say it anyway.

I think the MMO genre the way it is now, despite being a financial success, is a huge failure in terms of game design. I've never seen a whole genre of games so bogged down by sloppy gameplay mechanics and design paradigms. The current models by which MMO games are designed seem broken and faulty all the way down to their core ideas and will never fulfill the full potential of MMOs as genre of video games. Nearly all MMOs consist of taking the rulesets of smaller games, applying them to a scale they simply were not designed for, and trying to cover up the holes and gaps that result. As long as game developers insist on sticking to these models, I don't think MMOs are going to get any better, what you see now may be as good as its going to get.

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Re: Everyone, pull out your annoyed hats, but listen

Post by YellowSnow » Tue, 12. May 09, 06:06

Mikro39 wrote:For another example, I would like to make a reference to the now freeware game Battlecruiser millennium by 3000 AD.
I believe it's an internet forum law that states it is illegal to make any reference to the aforementioned series of games that were created by Derek. You shall forever be banished to the depths of the internet forums where you will never be allowed to post again.

Derek may you burn in sheol for stealing my 60 dollors.

God Bless and good luck. :roll:

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Post by Cyricist » Tue, 12. May 09, 11:01

Ok, let me just step in here with my own personal comment to this elaborate statement....

I think the games have been such a success because there is no multiplayer. Sure it would be fun to play this type of game on LAN or even on MMORPG scale. I'd LOVE to take my friends along on a joint patrol mission or be their worst competition nightmare. But I think one of the strengths of the game is the fact that it's you vs. the might of the machine. Starting humbly and continuing to grow to be the SOLE superpower in the known (X) Universe is the goal, and this would be harder to achieve and perhaps not even that fun to do with other players around, or at least I think so. It's a sandbox, a game where you can do what you like. Bringing in other players would limit that severely (for 'balance' issues). It would not do the title any good in that department.

And then there is the issue that single player games are disappearing because the interest in them is dwindling. I'm sorry? I think the X series is actually filling a gap in the market. Not all gamers want to game online with people they hardly know and become single specks in the mass of thousands of players. I am one of them.

I've played MMORPG's, and from time to time I still do, but interest in these 'financial milkcows' of computer entertainment is dropping quickly with me. It's like loving and eating Chinese food 7 days a week: at first it's real tasty, but eventually it all tastes the same.
In X I can pretty much do what I want, invest the time that I want, and not get bored with grinding for items to beat other players. This is a strength rather than a weakness, I think.

Multiplayer X on LAN could be a nice option. Other than that, no thanks!
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Post by Duncans_pumpkin » Tue, 12. May 09, 11:37

Multiplayer would just turn into a game of system requirements.

"Im better than you because I have a better computer and therefore can build bigger complexes in more sectors and own more ships"

The amount of code needed to change for large corps to work would be a whole new game built from the ground up.
I mean I still get choppy frame rates in X2 in my busy sectors and that isn't exactly a beautiful game graphics wise.

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Post by Elucca » Tue, 12. May 09, 13:10

Duncans_pumpkin, if you had read CBJ's post a few posts above yours, you'd know technical concerns are not the reason multiplayer isn't being developed now.

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Post by zazie » Tue, 12. May 09, 14:10

Cyricist wrote:...
+1 :thumb_up:


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