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Multiplayer game development question

This is a discussion on Multiplayer game development question within the Game Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; Hello all, I am in need of some guidance on getting started on a project. Project details: I am looking ...

  1. #1
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    Question Multiplayer game development question

    Hello all,

    I am in need of some guidance on getting started on a project.

    Project details: I am looking to recreate(or reverse engineer) a game I played in the late-90s->2000s. This game was multiplayer and required login credentials. The game consisted of a lobby for all gamers to chat while choosing a game to join(a tavern). Once they chose what game to join, the game became a first person shooter.

    The dilemma is, I have very minimal coding abilities. The good news, I am a very dedicated person. I am looking for someone to help me get started, and I don't mean the coding aspect. I need someone to look at the old game files and determine which language I should begin to become proficient in to make this project happen. I need to know where to begin my journey. I have all the old game files except unfortunately the server back-end that will need to be coded. It's my goal to get a game plan in order and know what needs to be done to make this project happen.

    If anyone has the spare time to help a newbie out, It would be greatly appreciated.

    Private message me or reply below if interested.

    Thank you

  2. #2
    and the hat of wrongness Salem's Avatar
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    There is no dilemma here. The only necessary first step is to get comfortable with a programming language of your choice.

    Since you don't have any prior programming experience, then I suggest start with python, then move onto C++.
    You can skip python if you can tolerate being "a failure" for 3 months.

    Make no mistake, if you want to become a programmer capable of designing, implementing and debugging your own work, then it's a long and difficult road.


    What's your end plan?
    Run the existing client s/w "as is" (possibly within an emulation layer), and recreate the server side?
    Reimplement client and server code, but keep all the existing data files?
    Reimplement everything, keeping only the spirit of the original game?

    > I need someone to look at the old game files and determine which language I should begin to become proficient in to make this project happen
    From your description, it seems what you need to be focussing on is the communication protocol between the client and server.
    If, that is, all you're interested in is implementing the server.

    It doesn't matter what language the original client (or server) was written in. It didn't have to be the same language at both ends, and it doesn't have to be the same language for what you want to learn.

    > This game was multiplayer and required login credentials.
    Unless this is anything other than plaintext "user" and plaintext "password", then you could be stuck before you start.
    If the client merely encrypts the password, then all you need do is store it and compare.
    But if the client/server established some kind of "challenge / response" protocol, then without the original secret key from the original server, you won't get very far without some serious reverse engineering on the client program.
    Lesshardtofind likes this.
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  3. #3
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    I don't know much about reverse engineering tecniques but I doubt you will get very far.

    Generally the server and client will have hardcoded commands that are sent to each other, and a whole bunch of general snapshot information(basically more commands).

    These commands are just ascii text commands like, winsock.send("move left");

    However I can't see how you would get access do all this info.

    Sometimes the datafiles can simply be opened in something like winrar, or maybe someone haswritten a custom extractor,depends on what algoritms where used to pack the files. For example pk3 file are just zip type of files.

    But I guess you would have to code pretty the whole game again from scratch..

  4. #4
    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    For the database you could use MySql or something lightweight or store data in xml files on the server. Socket code is fairly simple but you must figure out a common protocol. You likely won't be able to tell which language the original game was programmed in. Languages are tools so pick the best tool for the job.
    Last edited by VirtualAce; 04-18-2014 at 10:32 PM.

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