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MMORPG.com Discussion Forums

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General Discussion 

The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » Should companies release server software once the MMO shuts down?

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78 posts found
  Fireburst

Novice Member

Joined: 9/18/03
Posts: 199

5/14/06 4:24:53 PM#41

Originally posted by Toziel
I am wondering about something.While people are discussing here about if the owner should release the servsoftware after they have shut down the server themself there still arises the question.Did anyone ever made and enquiry to the specific firms like Turbine for AC2 or whoever had the rights on E&B in the end(Westwood?EA?) if they are willing to give the server software and maybe the source code(limited or full acces) away for a fee?
Lets take E&B as example.The game is now offline for 3-4 years and so either a red number or a black number in the pocket of the firm.The firm might even think about this if someone made an request and i bet there are enough people out there who would donate some bucks for the revival of E&B.

Yes they were asked many times but turned down the request. The source code is simply too valuable to give away.
  nomadian

Novice Member

Joined: 8/18/05
Posts: 3485

5/14/06 7:30:25 PM#42
I miss AC2. Such a unique game to the mmorpg genre, unique mobs, unique combat. It was good, it just never seemed to develop a good vision.
  Fireburst

Novice Member

Joined: 9/18/03
Posts: 199

5/15/06 1:50:22 AM#43
I was sad too when it passed away. It was the same with EnB (I must be some kind of Jonah) but if these games hadn't finished when they did I may not have tried all the other games when in search for a new game to call home.
  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  5/16/06 12:37:41 AM#44

Originally posted by Zindaihas
I've always wished there was a way to keep a character alive long after the game dies, or after you stop playing it.  Maybe if the company developed a screen saver or something that you could load your character into so you would have something to remember your character by.

Zindaihas, do you mean a slide show? With screenshots?  Or do you mean something like a 3D rendering of your character acting out random emotes?  Or maybe the avatar running around in a game landscape?

Sorry, the screensaver idea wasn't too clear.

-virtual tourist
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  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  5/16/06 12:49:03 AM#45

Originally posted by Beatnik59

If the enjoyment of my apartment is dependent on paying my rent, then I am free to enjoy it for as long as I abide by my end.

But if the enjoyment of my apartment is dependent on whether or not everybody is paying their rent, then even if I pay it, I may not be able to enjoy it due to factors outside of my control.

Gamers want to play games.  They do not wish to play question marks.  Allowing post-publish legacy rights starts to make games less questionable to the skeptical consumer.



I'll give you even a better story along the lines of that analogy.

Suppose everyone, including you, is paying rent as they should.  Then, the landlord, for no apparent logic reason other than "this would be better if it were different" decides to turn your apartment complex into a hollow building. The next day you and your neighbours are no longer that, but workers in a warehouse created inside the now hollow residential building.  He gives no further explanation other than "this is better now" .
You and your co-workers are still paying rent.

I find myself engaged in complex debates about legality and fairness, which is good, it only goes to show how much was left to debate in the community, as well as the unexposed discontent on the behalf of so many gamers.  Turns out it really wasn't just about wheter the gun was balanced with the sword or whether the avatar was customizable or not.
What's interesting, is that the more I debate, the more I realize how recent all these issues are, sprouting from a game concept a few years in age only, and therefore, prone to many points of debate, disagreement, misleading and misundrstanding.

Because these games carry serious emotional baggage (just browse the SWG forums here for some concrete evidence), I am starting to realize, that maybe I should just quit mmos altogether and let the industry mature a bit more.

I'm kinda tired of feeling like a guinea pig for both game concepts and developments, as well as for the ethical questions that this industry germinates.

-virtual tourist
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  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  5/18/06 2:31:17 PM#46
Sorry about the double post, but here's a somewhat similar topic regarding the ownership of the results/progression of a player's efforts in-game:

http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,70909-0.html?tw=wn_index_1

-virtual tourist
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  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  5/20/06 4:24:54 PM#47
bump for a lazy saturday

-virtual tourist
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  Kehn

Novice Member

Joined: 3/26/06
Posts: 177

5/20/06 5:30:01 PM#48

Originally posted by Mithrandolir
I would so play E&B if someone had it up and running. I'd even pay 20 bucks a month to play it.
No... Eve is not the same for me :(

Not that Eve is bad... I just really liked E&B. Me and one other person I think :)



Me three  Well I know a whole lot more than three, but who's counting.

/freebump

  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  5/25/06 5:16:03 PM#49
bump

-virtual tourist
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  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  6/05/06 5:53:19 PM#50
bump. voting is great hmmmmkay?

-virtual tourist
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  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  6/19/06 7:09:39 PM#51
keep voting, bump

-virtual tourist
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  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  6/30/06 4:14:52 PM#52
friday bump

-virtual tourist
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  SnaKey

Novice Member

Joined: 3/26/04
Posts: 3351

easthastings.
proboards49.com

Modjoe and others migrated there

6/30/06 4:21:17 PM#53

I think this should defnitally be put on the MMORPG.com vote thing.

I remember reading this when you first posted it and still think it's a great idea. They can still make money selling the game so why the hell not?

myspace.com/angryblogr
A Work in Progress.
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  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  7/05/06 12:53:47 PM#54

Originally posted by SnaKey

I think this should defnitally be put on the MMORPG.com vote thing.



Hey thanks for the support.  Yeah, I wish they'd add an oficial poll about this issue, it'd be great to get the industry's attention.  mmorpg.com just takes time......

-virtual tourist
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  Theo

Novice Member

Joined: 10/02/03
Posts: 242

7/05/06 1:22:32 PM#55

Originally posted by britoca

Originally posted by aaddam
I kind of agree with some of what your saying but i still voted no, simple reason is,

You would still loose everything because you would have to start again and for me this is when the bordem kicks in and i move on to something  new.


That is true, but you would not lose the game.

I have some games on my shelves that are nearly 10 years in age.  Sometimes, once in a blue moon, I'll install one of them and just have a good laugh at the graphics, and enjoy the things that I had fogotten about and suddenly they pop back into memory out of nowhere.  It's nice, ya know? U spend a lot of time with thse things (games), and it's good to know u can revist a portion of your past like that.

With MMOs.... it's over.

That completely negates your argument that your character should be considered your intellectual property. In this case, your only argument in support of making the game available is because you want it, not to protect the investment of time and effort your character represents.

I don't think it's a bad idea. I'd love to see publishers find a viable way to license the software to a third party so the game can live on in some form once it stops being profitable. I'm just not sure there really IS a viable way to do that. Say EQ closes down but Sony sells you a license to run a shard on your own server space. I don't think it's feasible for Sony to give you the right to alter the code in any way, because the potential for disastrous PR is enormous (ogres pimping off naked halflings in the East Commonlands and gnomes that cuss like sailors just won't do) and I suspect the legal implications of ownership are pretty complex as well. On the other hand, if you're not allowed to alter the code, that means Sony has to maintain tech support for you, which means you'll be paying some sort of service contract. Which means you'll probably need to be able to charge players to access your shard, which makes you sort of a franchisee at that point. And what happens when you close YOUR doors?

I voted "no", not because I think it's a bad idea, but because I don't think it's workable for a lot of reasons, some technical and some legal. I think it'd be great if publishers could convert their defunt MMOs into single player games that you can run locally, while allowing you to preserve the characters you invested your time in. It won't be an MMO any more, but you'd still "own" your character and you'd be able to take nostalgic trips through the game world for as long as you wanted. If they added in limited multiplayer support so you could play with a handful of friends, that'd be better yet.
  britoca

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/06/04
Posts: 1486

Time U enjoyed wasting was not wasted

 
OP  7/05/06 8:02:37 PM#56

Originally posted by Theo

Originally posted by britoca

Originally posted by aaddam
I kind of agree with some of what your saying but i still voted no, simple reason is,

You would still loose everything because you would have to start again and for me this is when the bordem kicks in and i move on to something  new.


That is true, but you would not lose the game.

I have some games on my shelves that are nearly 10 years in age.  Sometimes, once in a blue moon, I'll install one of them and just have a good laugh at the graphics, and enjoy the things that I had fogotten about and suddenly they pop back into memory out of nowhere.  It's nice, ya know? U spend a lot of time with thse things (games), and it's good to know u can revist a portion of your past like that.

With MMOs.... it's over.

That completely negates your argument that your character should be considered your intellectual property. In this case, your only argument in support of making the game available is because you want it, not to protect the investment of time and effort your character represents.

I don't think it's a bad idea. I'd love to see publishers find a viable way to license the software to a third party so the game can live on in some form once it stops being profitable. I'm just not sure there really IS a viable way to do that. Say EQ closes down but Sony sells you a license to run a shard on your own server space. I don't think it's feasible for Sony to give you the right to alter the code in any way, because the potential for disastrous PR is enormous (ogres pimping off naked halflings in the East Commonlands and gnomes that cuss like sailors just won't do) and I suspect the legal implications of ownership are pretty complex as well. On the other hand, if you're not allowed to alter the code, that means Sony has to maintain tech support for you, which means you'll be paying some sort of service contract. Which means you'll probably need to be able to charge players to access your shard, which makes you sort of a franchisee at that point. And what happens when you close YOUR doors?

I voted "no", not because I think it's a bad idea, but because I don't think it's workable for a lot of reasons, some technical and some legal. I think it'd be great if publishers could convert their defunt MMOs into single player games that you can run locally, while allowing you to preserve the characters you invested your time in. It won't be an MMO any more, but you'd still "own" your character and you'd be able to take nostalgic trips through the game world for as long as you wanted. If they added in limited multiplayer support so you could play with a handful of friends, that'd be better yet.

Sorry, I don't seem the connection on how what u quoted undoes the argument that character development (and etc) is the player's property.  I am thinking along the lines of the game being the software (like MS word) and the character and property being the result through the tool (like the document u type).

I do see that the analogy isn't perfect, as the development of the character can only go so far as what is allowed by the code in the game.  Basically, the player is just fullfilling what is allowed by the game developer.

That is fine.  There are games however, that do allow for creativity.  People design housing, clothes, etc  Those present a totally different situation.

I see it as a trade off.  The consumer put down his money and he gets the game.  Then he puts in the time, dedication and patience, and he return he gets the fullfilment of his dreams, his fantasy, he roleplays, conquers, etc, etc.  In the end, however, none of that is guaranteed.  That's what I am trying to get at.

As company, I find it hard to swallow that companies have the right to terminate the experience without any other alternative to the player but to accept the end of his game.

i used the 'game on the shelve analogy" because, well, it isn't an analogy.  It's true, u buy software, and u keep it and u will be able to use it in the future (granted u have to deal with future hardware incompatibilities, etc, etc).  With mmos, the company has the right to deny my playing.  How so???

About the PR disaster u spoke of, that wouldn't be a big deal whatsoever.  How many games are out there with custumizable skins and environment already?  If a gamer codes porn into his game environment, than that's that particular gamer's fault, not the gaming company.

Also, I said it many times, and I'll state it again that this would be terminated software.  Exctinct, defunct, passe, no more, discontinued, etc
There are no support obligations towards the gamer from the custumer's perspectives.  The custumer just wants a working copy of the game.  That's all.  Who would want an unsuported copy of a game?  I would!
And many people above me see to want the same.  that's like asking why do you keep that dusty copy of Space Quest 1 around?  I don't think Sierra is supporting that, lol.  (I know, that was a simple game by comparison)

I agree with u in the end, it would be great.  Besides, I didn't ask the question "is it possible?", I asked more along the lines of "if it were possible, would u be interested?", in other words "Do you want this?"
I'll let the companies figure out the rest.  What I wanted to show is consumer demand and interest, that's what moves these guys anyways.

nice post btw, thanks

-virtual tourist
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  Tempesto

Novice Member

Joined: 1/23/06
Posts: 8

7/05/06 10:07:51 PM#57

Originally posted by britoca
This stuff needs to be talked about because eventually, all mmos will die off and become abandonware/obsolete.
So far that is normal, games die off, but with MMOS, when your game shuts down... it's over.

You will never be able to install the game and play it once again a few years down the road.

This is very important, because many gamers put a lot of effort and dedication into their characters and progression, and many even become emotionally attached to their game character.  If the game suddenly and drastically changes or if it closes down, well... everything ends right there and then.
All that effort and time gets stored (maybe) into a backup closet, somewhere in an office building, and you will never again have it back.
Believe me, it hurts. It happened to me, so it could happen to any of you as well.

I think that companies should start releasing their own official server-side software/emulators so that users can [edit]buy the software (not proposing giving anything away for free)[/edit], still host and play the MMOs (like a regular multiplayer rpg) once they close down or are permanently modified to newer versions.

Point is, they have ownership of their code, and they have the right to modify/close a game at any given moment.  What we, as a gamer community need to start waking up to, is that they should not have the right of ownership of our characters/progression/effort.  The time we put into our characters is not time worked for the gaming companies.  We did it, the result of this effort is ours, and we should start claiming it as such.

[further edit]
let me make it clear that in my question I refer to the following:

  1. a game or version of the game that has become extinct or obsolete
  2. the game company would SELL a copy of the required software, not give it away for free
  3. by being extinct or obsolete, the company has NO custumer support/content providing obligations to the purchaser of the copy of the software other than basic functional documentation (something like /help)
  4. the purchaser should be aware of the limitations/problems of the software and the terms of release of resposibility of support on the company's behalf
  5. the purchaser would not be paying the company any monthly fees. Read #3 again, there is nothing to pay for on a monthly basis. The purchaser only buys a copy, the means, the "tool" to convert his defunct mmo into a regular, user-hosted multiplayer game[/edit]




You should have added another option to your poll: "not sure"

What youre saying seems like a very nice idea, but i do not think many games will truly die out. There may be hundreds, possibly thousands of MMORPG's up but they do not seem to die out very easily. A very good example is Runescape. For some reason, this easy... not great MMORPG is still around and a Large amount of people play it every day.

When you say User hosted, It may not be as fun as if there were thousands of people playing. If you do manage to get up to level 100 .. or even higher/ create a godly character, eventually you will begin to be bored because there is virtually nothing for you to do. For games like EVE online, they will most likely stay up around for another 10 years. if not more, because the choices of what you can do is basically limitless.

As for ownership, I do not think they really care about your character. As game creators and game masters, they can create their own godly character without doin much. I do not think they will mind if you take your character into your own private user hosted world, but they certainly do not need to give up their rights of owning the game. They spent their time creating it. If they did want to sell the game, I would think they want some money, so they might charge you renewal fees whenever you use "their game". Its really not up to us to decide. If you really want to, you should create your own game and control that.
  Woob

Novice Member

Joined: 2/06/04
Posts: 50

"Always Out Front"

7/05/06 10:38:45 PM#58

Nice conversation.

Though actually publishing the server software may not be feasible for reasons mentioned above, I wish they would be.

I'd kill someone with my bare hands to be able to run an AC2 server.

  Theo

Novice Member

Joined: 10/02/03
Posts: 242

7/06/06 9:55:37 AM#59

Originally posted by britoca

Originally posted by Theo

Originally posted by britoca

Originally posted by aaddam

You would still loose everything because you would have to start again and for me this is when the bordem kicks in and i move on to something  new.


That is true, but you would not lose the game.


That completely negates your argument that your character should be considered your intellectual property. In this case, your only argument in support of making the game available is because you want it, not to protect the investment of time and effort your character represents.


Sorry, I don't seem the connection on how what u quoted undoes the argument that character development (and etc) is the player's property.  I am thinking along the lines of the game being the software (like MS word) and the character and property being the result through the tool (like the document u type).


If you lose everything you've worked for in the game as it existed on the servers, you abandon everything you claim to want to preserve through the ability to run the game locally. I think it's a matter of keeping your argument honest. If your goal is to preserve your characters, it can't be enough to simply possess an instance of the game world. You need to be able to keep your character data intact in a form you can store locally with the game. If, on the other hand, it isn't really the character that's important, but the ability to continue experiencing the game world, then leave the question of intellectual property out of it. I think you lost me when you seemed to accept that you'd lose what you claimed you were out to protect as long as you could still play the game.

I know it's sort of an academic argument and it really doesn't have a lot to do with the conversation at hand other than to qualify the motives for bringing it up. I think I'm just trying to help find a compelling reason for companies TO provide access to defunct games by shaping a solid argument in favor of it. I hope I haven't come across as antagonistic or offensive. It's an interesting topic.
  Terridol

Novice Member

Joined: 6/28/04
Posts: 123

Foreseen has the Emperor, Star Wars geeks everyone has become!!!

7/06/06 1:53:51 PM#60

This could work with a few little provisos:

1. The server code must be purchased for 1 client ONLY! This keeps people from tring to set up a server somewhere and charging people for access.

2. All char data for the account specified is included. This means that you can keep what you have and don't have to start over again.

3. Re thinking #1 about this time..... ok ok mutipule ppl can connect but each must have purchased their own server code package thingy, this will allow a clustering as it where. 



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