Interesting online console news

Discussion in 'Nintendo Forums' started by Sinzer, Dec 3, 2002.

  1. Sinzer

    Sinzer
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    http://www.cube-europe.com/newsphp/news.php?id=3115

    Although not explicitly said, this could mean that Ninty and PS2 gamers could be playing against each other, the middleware would essentially make the two platforms online compatible!!!

    That would be good news, although bad news for X-Box gamers!
     
  2. Azrikam

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    I would be REALLY shocked to see this happen. The games would have to be running at exactly the same speed on both systems, not to mention the myriad of issues that would have to be dealt with so that they could interact.

    Technical issues aside, this deal would obviously help Nintendo much more than Sony (given the market share), and I doubt Sony would do this without a HUGE cash outlay from Nintendo.
     
  3. spikeyboyo

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    Yes that is good news for the console market and online gaming.

    Not sure why you say it is bad news for Xbox gamers. If you mean that its because xbox wont be able to play others on PS2 and GC thats one thing - if you mean because Xbox wont be the only console with online games, doubt this will cause to much of an issue - one cause all PS2 and CG owners will have to go out and buy additional hardware for one, and "as far as im aware" most if not all the current PS2/CG games dont have network code in them, Xbox games do (not all of them of course)

    I will wait to see the day that games on different platforms can play each other - reasosn as per Azrikam.


    Spike
     
  4. hencole

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    What are you all talking about? There is nothing in that article to suggest what you've just said. Absolute nonsense. Pipe dreams.
     
  5. Sinzer

    Sinzer
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    Go read a definition of middleware, to help you out

    Basically to explain, Sega have developed a platform, which provides ALL the netcode and multiplayer capability into a game. Developers do not have to write their own net/multiplayer code they use SEGA's, as the code is middleware it also means that it will translate the code from any system to make it compatible with another.

    It is not hard to extrapolate that IF PS2 and GC are feeding into the same middleware system, then they will be able to communicate with each other.

    That is the point of middleware, it removes those myriad of issues.
    As to technical aspects regarding graphical speed, simply means that PS2 games will be programmed to run at the same FPS but with lower detail. But, there is no reason why the same FPS needs to be attained, just means the PS2 will be at a slight disadvantage (the same as an old PC vs a new PC).

    It makes financial sense for all parties involved and also shuts MS out.
     
  6. Azrikam

    Azrikam
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    Well if I was Sony, I wouldn't want to include Nintendo in this at all. Compared to Sony's market share, Nintendo's is a drop in the bucket, and wouldn't help their sales much, if any. Nintendo, on the other hand, would get a huge benefit out of it, because they could promote the fact that their games provide play against PS2 owners. (all 600 billion of them)

    But, console gaming isn't PC gaming. Developers don't care what console gamers are playing their game on. But, Sony and Nintendo care, because they are the ones getting the license kickbacks for each game sold. Playing nice with the other teams, despite giving them the chance to use some cool marketing buzzwords (inter-operatability, etc), eats into their market share. If Nintendo released SOCOM and allowed gamers to play against PS2 SOCOM players, it would potentially eat into Sony's license profits, and console sales.
     
  7. Sinzer

    Sinzer
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    You are forgetting that SONY, Nintendo and SEGA are all Japanese company's, despite their rivalries, they will still band together to prevent MS from any advantage.

    Also, GC sales are no longer a drop in the ocean in Japan, they are approaching PS2 weekly sales and will likely soon surpass. It won't hurt them to allow multi-format online gaming, there will likely still be exclusive online only games, but from a 3rd party standpoint, it will help them sell platforms.
     
  8. Azrikam

    Azrikam
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    I'm not sure if I agree with that. Afterall, they are still companies, and they are out for profit and nothing else. Corporate allegiances are only for one thing... increased profit.

    Also, Sega has a pretty good relationship with Microsoft, and if they are providing the middleware (and also as a games manufacturer), then it would be in their best interest to have as many systems on it as possibe... and this includes Microsoft.

    Also, if you've got middleware to go through, that's increased potential for lag-time, which is death to online gaming. Add to this people trying to play console games on dial-up connections, and it's a recipe for disaster. Ok, that's a bit of an exaggeration, but you see my point.

    It's an interesting discussion, but I really don't see it happening any time soon. People playing online PC games with different operating systems, sure. But console gamers playing against other consoles... I don't think it'll be a viable option.
     
  9. hencole

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    I think your very wrong there. There is no mythical allegience to speak off between these companys. SONY are huge, they don't need the likes of Nintendo and SEGA to help them. They are quite capable of competing with MS on their own. Plus as Azrikam says SEGA seem to be getting quite cosy with MS anyway. I think your getting carried away with this idea, its not going to happen in a million years.
     
  10. Sinzer

    Sinzer
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    Maybe the Japanese conspiracy is a little extreme :p ...... but current Japanese feeling towards MS and the X-Box is not particuarly high.

    The middleware would have little affect on lag if any, the biggest effect will be your ISP and local loop.

    In terms of not happening in a million years, there is already cross platform online gaming with FFXI, which has now been released on PC in Japan.

    Also, Star Wars Galaxies will be opening it's doors to PC, PS2 and X-Box.

    I think you will find that cross-console gaming will happen sooner than you think, especially if gamers start demanding it.
     
  11. NeoBlade

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    I agree with Sinzer here that middleware developed by Sega will give the possibility of Gamecube Vs PS2 online gaming. Also about the companies being Japanese working together... Square, Namco and Konami I think bought shares off each-other ages ago and the recent buyout of Square by Enix (the two largest RPG heavyweights you will ever see) just illustrates that Japanese developers want to lower overall running costs to boost profits in Japan due to their weakened economy.

    "Square Enix" will be a serious force no doubt in the console world and with more possible mergers on the way the future will certainly be interesting.

    I think many gamers have demanded cross platform gaming since the Dreamcast came out with its online plan. Dreamcast Vs PC gaming was an attraction but now the stakes are higher with all three next gen consoles and the PC platform wanting a piece of the action.

    Middleware will certainly help ease development times and costs... I just hope its implmented well but then Sega are no mugs in the software arena. Cross platform gaming will happen and if people want to turn a blind eye to it then thats fair enough. To me its the next logical step in online gaming since its not about excluding players but its about getting them to join in the experience, regardless of what hardware platform they are on. If more players enjoy online gaming then more will sign up and more profit will be made in the long term.

    Currently the online gaming experience is rather limited to FPS, racers etc (if you look at the bigger picture) thanks to the PC market audience. Now that the consoles have joined the party I hope that developers will find other means of adding internet gameplay for everyone and not just those of the dedicated. If the console market wants to expand they will have to tap into unused sources (female gamers) and I'm sure it will happen within 3 years or so.

    As for me, bring on cross platform Bomberman anyday ^_^
     
  12. Azrikam

    Azrikam
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    Will Star Wars Galaxies players interact in the same places, regardless of what console they are running? If so, that's very impressive.

    I'm not against crossover online console gaming (COCG :) ), but I just doubt how feasible it is as a business plan. Let's assume that Star Wars Galaxies (SWG) does allow PS2, PC, and X-Box gamers on the same servers. Who gets the subscription fee? Microsoft has already said that they want to run X-Box Live themselves, as opposed to just letting developers setup their own games and charging their own fees.

    On the gaming side of it, SWG will have to be designed with COCG in mind. That means that all version will have to be equal in scope. How can the PS2 keep up with a PC or an X-Box version of an RPG with no hard drive? (unless an add-on hard drive is a requirement) Either, A) The PS2 version gets tons more data fed down the pipe during the game, which gives PS2 players a serious disadvantage, or B) games will have to be scaled down to the lowest spec on the system. Sure, the X-Box and high-end PC versions can look brilliant, but all 3 versions will have to have the same size maps, the same amount of items/creatures, etc, etc.

    I don't think it'll be a million years from now, but I do think there's a ton of issues that have to be addressed before it'll work.

    PC VS PS2 gamers - No problem
    PC VS X-Box gamers - No problem
    PS2 VS X-Box gamers - Big problems
     
  13. NeoBlade

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    The issue of data content is a hard one... Which is why middleware needs to be included from the initial planning stages. I can see Phantasy Star Online being a online cross-platform game but Star Wars could be difficult I agree. The PS2 has the network kit out in Japan and in the USA already which includes a BB/NB adapter and HDD but Nintendo's plans are ever absent... Thankfully the SpaceWorld shows are now cancelled for more shows throught the year so we don't have to wait until September to find out more news on potential games like Mario Kart Online... Hopefully ^_^;;

    But then problems leads to solutions so it should be exciting times ahead of us. I just hope that online gaming will smash through the current barriers of FPS, RTS and racers. Sega did well providing Bomberman, Mr Driller, Tetris, PSO etc to the online world and now that the remaining console companies have joined in, we should see some innovation to online gaming beyond FPS. IMO the market needs it to become a true mass market player. Although thesedays originallity and innovation seems to be frowned upon sadly >_<
     
  14. Sinzer

    Sinzer
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    I believe the PS2 uses a HD for online play already, you certainly need one for FFXI, therefore I expect it will be part of the SWG requirements.

    As for profits, in the case of SWG it is developed by Verant, owned by SONY. MS will likely have to pay SONY fees for allowing players access to the servers. This will be reflected in fees for gamers on the X-Box to connect to the game.

    The online model is already there, and that is subscription based gaming. Currently, FPS is the most popular online gametype, this is followed by RPG (certainly RPG is the only gametype that generates profit and you can play with 1000's of others on one server alone!) then by RTS. I am not sure that driving games are that popular online tbh, I certainly have never played one online nor see many others discussing it.

    FPS and RTS is currently "free" but this will likely change, especially with the introduction of online games such as PlanetSide, which is an RPG like FPS. Also, many ISPS cannot afford to run the servers nor maintain them, I give it another year or so and you will have to start paying subscriptions to online providers (it has already started with X-Box live).

    Cross platform gaming will happen, those who implement first will likely have the edge, hence why I believe SONY and Nintendo would band together on this one.
     
  15. Azrikam

    Azrikam
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    To take a step back, I'm not sure why COCG is such a good thing. When I play a game online, I don't care how many people are online to play against, be it 100 or 100,000,000.

    If I'm playing MotoGP online, as long as there are 15 people available, I really don't care about much else.

    Sure, I can see the potential marketing hype, but it just wouldn't be a selling point for me. At the ECTS show, a company was showing their software that allowed PS2 and PC gamers to play a game (not sure which) on the same network. My response was, "that's pretty cool, but what's the point?"
     
  16. RimBlock

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    Ok,

    Not sure what people are talking about with the console differences.

    To play online whilst linking to a central 'control' server all that the console is doing is sending packets of information.

    As the players will be playing the same game which is developed, presumably, by the same programmers, the programmers can make sure the information required is sent regardless of platform the software is running on.

    Should the different consoles send different information (due to bad programming) then all the middleware has to do is translate the different formats to a like standard that can be used by the game server.

    As for connection speed differences, it would be the same as a P.C. owner with a modem playing against a P.C. owner with an ADSL connection. The modem user would get a lot more lag than the ADSL user but again the amount would depend on connection speed and integrity.

    The middleware could also cause a slowdown for some users depending on which system it is translating the packets too (the translated systems would suffer lag) and the hardware base / load on the servers the software is running on.

    The system the software is running on is of no concern if the developers have programed it for multi-platform gaming.

    A prime example would be Adobe Acrobat. The software has been programmed for different platforms but still accepts a universal file format that is readable all all platforms the software runs on.

    Cheers
    Si
     
  17. Spinning Plates

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    I dont really care about playing other console users. Now playing agasint anyone in the WORLD with NO LAG, that is what i call a breakthrough.
     

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