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The mmo servers of the future

Lord.BachusLord.Bachus Den HelderPosts: 9,065Member Uncommon

In the near future i personally believe that most mmos will ha a seemles world, with no loading times.

 

but, there will be instancing and phasing, but also the loading to these parts of the game will be in the background, this will be so smooth that it will feel totally naturall and in most places there will be other players around, in other parts you will be alone or with your group ready for a special mission.

 

All in all, there will be an open world feeling with the advantages of instancing and phasing..  

Best MMO experiences : EQ(PvE), DAoC(PvP), WoW(total package) LOTRO (worldfeel) GW2 (Artstyle and animations and worlddesign) SWTOR (Story immersion) TSW (story) ESO (character advancement)

Comments

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Lord.Bachus

    In the near future i personally believe that most mmos will ha a seemles world, with no loading times.

     

    but, there will be instancing and phasing, but also the loading to these parts of the game will be in the background, this will be so smooth that it will feel totally naturall and in most places there will be other players around, in other parts you will be alone or with your group ready for a special mission.

     

    All in all, there will be an open world feeling with the advantages of instancing and phasing..  

         Good luck with that..  What you are describing is a single player game with co-op online options.. That is being done to death, and I think many ( at least I have ) are just tired of that..  I'm a bit tired of the storyline themeparks.. If I wanted to experience a pre-written story, I'd buy a book.. I"m still trying to understand how someone thought Phasing was a good MMO tool to use.. /shrug

  • NovusodNovusod Lakewood, NJPosts: 892Member Uncommon

    Seamless worlds were done many times years ago. This is certainly not a technology of the future. Lineage II (2003) had a fully seamless world with no zoning at all and ran pretty well. Part of the issue today is people keep asking for higher and more demanding graphics. With better graphics comes more lag and the need to chop up the world into bit sized zones. With the whole way modern MMOs are made its' not practical to have a seamless open world any more.

     

    There has also been a falling out of sorts where the development studios have turned their back on old school game design and instead are pushing for more instanced gaming. So even if the newer MMOs have open worlds they are typically smaller then old school open worlds and are only used for solo quest leveling. All the group content and especially raid content is done in instances. So when a developer is deciding where best to spend their money and resources most of the development dollars are going to be plowed into instance design and not putting together a full seamless open world.

     

    For a modern MMO to be made with a seamless open world a number of things would have to happen.

    - Graphics downgrade: this is probably the hardest pill to swallow because nobody wants last generation's gfx

     

    - Contested content: People are going to have to spend most of their game time in the open world for it to be worth developing. No point in making a seamless open world if the players are going to spend all their time in instances anyway. To get players out of instances the content also has to be taken out of the instances and make contested. That means players are going to need to learn the patience of camping again.

     

    - More sandbox and less themepark. It is better when the journey not destination is the goal.

     

    - If there is PvP there can be no instanced battle grounds. People are lazy so if given the option to queue up to shoot fish in a barrel that they will do. Make people go out into the open world and hunt for that PvP.

  • PAL-18PAL-18 AnachronoxPosts: 802Member

    We allready had seemles world, with no loading times and now we have next gen Zynga MMOs tech.

    MMO peeps call it "evolution"

    So, did ESO have a successful launch? Yes, yes it did.
    By Ryan Getchell on April 02, 2014.
    **On the radar:http://cyberpunk.net/**

  • zxcvbnm1234zxcvbnm1234 qwerPosts: 92Member
    If we are discussing about the 'SERVERS', well they should carry 1.000.000 online players each SERVER in the same area and it had to be a sandbox game.
  • tv2zulutv2zulu CopenhagenPosts: 73Member
    Seamless is probably not going to happen anytime soon, single shards are more likely.
  • DivonaDivona WellingtonPosts: 175Member

    MMO server of the future will be requires to:

    1. Handle single game world where over 7 billions people are playing at the same time, no separate shards.
    2. Server capable of process every single NPC decision in real time, from it pathfinding and interacting with other NPCs or players.
    3. Have enough processor to generate it own quests / events all around the game world in real time.
    4. Enough processor to study and learn from players action in real time, and adapt it strategy to be better than players.
    5. Capable enough to build and expand it own world in real time.
    6. Contain enough knowledge base and have enough processing power to form natural communication with players.
    7. Become SkyNet and take over the world.
    :)
  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,669Member Uncommon
    I can easily see MMO server architecture expanding to include media servers with the primary function of streaming the spectator content for eSports and player productions.

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    I can easily see MMO server architecture expanding to include media servers with the primary function of streaming the spectator content for eSports and player productions.

    LoL is already doing that.

     

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member

    If I was going to wildly speculate, I don't feel that the traditional "map with mobs" will be efficient to extend to large worlds. It's not just computing power, it's managing all that information in a way that admins can understand and troubleshoot.  So instead, I tend to imagine a world that's sort of a mix of Minecraft and EvE - endless procedurally generated landscapes, but dotted with instances with different levels of permanence.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,669Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    I can easily see MMO server architecture expanding to include media servers with the primary function of streaming the spectator content for eSports and player productions.

    LoL is already doing that.

    A lot of MOBAs and FPS offer some kind of spectator mode. It's very doable when you only have 6-16 players on the field. I'm thinking more down the line of sieges, wars and the type of battles you see in AoC, Lineage 2, Aika or even EVE. Also for broadcasting things like LOTRO's Weatherstock and other large player events.

    I'm also talking about media servers to stream an event. This would allow the devs to host commentators, mix in other broadcast media (interviews, QnA, latest patch/expansion info, etc). Currently, in most games with a spectator mode, the developers don't stream anything, the player do, and they have to use third party resources to do so.

    To head off your next post... optional, not mandatory, either can do it, just as an option, both player streams and dev streams can exist for different events, choice, option, choice, you can don't have to watch either dev content or player content if you find one or both objectionable, people can choose to do either, devs will have the choice to run an event if they want to, people have the choice of watching whichever.

     

     

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    I can easily see MMO server architecture expanding to include media servers with the primary function of streaming the spectator content for eSports and player productions.

    Are you thinking in terms of creating event logs that could then be reassembled into a video by a client?

    ( I've watched a few videos of RTS games, oddly only for game I don't play ... I've just never put any thought into an MMO doing it so it's taking me a minute here to wrap my head around what exactly it would be ... but you have me curious )

  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,747Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Lord.Bachus

    In the near future i personally believe that most mmos will ha a seemles world, with no loading times.

     but, there will be instancing and phasing, but also the loading to these parts of the game will be in the background, this will be so smooth that it will feel totally naturall and in most places there will be other players around, in other parts you will be alone or with your group ready for a special mission.

     All in all, there will be an open world feeling with the advantages of instancing and phasing..  

    While what you're describing isn't really that far from existing games (like WOW where the only loading is between continents and instances,) streaming loading tech is something that basically has to be redone from scratch in every game -- and it would be a tough thing to develop a universal solution for.

    So while some games may get closer to this, it's not likely we'll see the entire industry shift to it.

    Basically it represents a pretty significant development (money) cost for each new project, at a time when most MMORPGs aren't especially profitable.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

  • Mtibbs1989Mtibbs1989 Fredericksburg, VAPosts: 2,920Member Uncommon
    You know Bachus your server of tomorrow was here almost 10 years ago... It's not the hardware capability that's lacking today; it's the willingness of companies of today to put forth the effort in the development for the MMOs of tomorrow.

    image

    Somebody, somewhere has better skills as you have, more experience as you have, is smarter than you, has more friends as you do and can stay online longer. Just pray he's not out to get you.
  • Lord.BachusLord.Bachus Den HelderPosts: 9,065Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Axehilt
    Originally posted by Lord.Bachus

    In the near future i personally believe that most mmos will ha a seemles world, with no loading times.

     but, there will be instancing and phasing, but also the loading to these parts of the game will be in the background, this will be so smooth that it will feel totally naturall and in most places there will be other players around, in other parts you will be alone or with your group ready for a special mission.

     All in all, there will be an open world feeling with the advantages of instancing and phasing..  

    While what you're describing isn't really that far from existing games (like WOW where the only loading is between continents and instances,) streaming loading tech is something that basically has to be redone from scratch in every game -- and it would be a tough thing to develop a universal solution for.

    So while some games may get closer to this, it's not likely we'll see the entire industry shift to it.

    Basically it represents a pretty significant development (money) cost for each new project, at a time when most MMORPGs aren't especially profitable.

    Most MMOs make money my friend, and many even make good money.  Even SWTOR is making money right now, development costs have been earned back, and that game has a long time before them, MMOs is still where the money of the future is. 

     

    And i absolutely realise that the technollogy to create a game like i just described has been around for atleast 10 years, but so far the developers have been lazy and did not recognise that fact how important the open world illusion is for players immersion

     

    IF you combine what WoW has been doing and how SWTOR handles story instances, you actually are pretty much where you want to be.

    Best MMO experiences : EQ(PvE), DAoC(PvP), WoW(total package) LOTRO (worldfeel) GW2 (Artstyle and animations and worlddesign) SWTOR (Story immersion) TSW (story) ESO (character advancement)

  • FoomerangFoomerang Portland, ORPosts: 5,565Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by Orizontas
    If we are discussing about the 'SERVERS', well they should carry 1.000.000 online players each SERVER in the same area and it had to be a sandbox game.
    You just described 10Six Online. Came out about oooh, 13 years ago or so ;)
  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,669Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by maplestone
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    I can easily see MMO server architecture expanding to include media servers with the primary function of streaming the spectator content for eSports and player productions.

    Are you thinking in terms of creating event logs that could then be reassembled into a video by a client?

    ( I've watched a few videos of RTS games, oddly only for game I don't play ... I've just never put any thought into an MMO doing it so it's taking me a minute here to wrap my head around what exactly it would be ... but you have me curious )

    Yes!  Imagine not only watching the stream of a competition, but being able to download that and, with a client-like video player, be able to move the camera anywhere you want within the video as it played back. An example of a similar recorder and playback system would be the one in Lineage 2.

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,669Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Foomerang

    Originally posted by Orizontas
    If we are discussing about the 'SERVERS', well they should carry 1.000.000 online players each SERVER in the same area and it had to be a sandbox game.

    You just described 10Six Online. Came out about oooh, 13 years ago or so ;)
     

    PV/10Six did not then, nor does it now, support one million players in the same area.

     

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • BadSpockBadSpock Somewhere, MIPosts: 7,974Member

    With a unified hardware platform to maximize engine efficiency, and fiber speeds to every user - we could do this today!

    Or, we could do this today while using the graphics of 10 years ago.

    Lack of competition in the consumer internet market + having to code for a wide range of PC hardware = no real technological advancement in the MMO space.

  • JamesPJamesP Portland, MEPosts: 435Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Divona

    MMO server of the future will be requires to:

    1. Handle single game world where over 7 billions people are playing at the same time, no separate shards.
    2. Server capable of process every single NPC decision in real time, from it pathfinding and interacting with other NPCs or players.
    3. Have enough processor to generate it own quests / events all around the game world in real time.
    4. Enough processor to study and learn from players action in real time, and adapt it strategy to be better than players.
    5. Capable enough to build and expand it own world in real time.
    6. Contain enough knowledge base and have enough processing power to form natural communication with players.
    7. Become SkyNet and take over the world.
    :)

    Something to keep in mind is that just because the world acts seamless to the Client doesn't mean that it needs to be seamless server side with a single Server running the entire world. The world can still be zoned Server side as long as everything Client side is seamless and you (The players) would never know that it was in fact zoned Server side. This is how Seamless Worlds work now and how they will be handled for the foreseeable future. It would take a MAJOR breakthrough in computing to allow an entire seamless world to be hosted on a single Server.

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  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,747Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Lord.Bachus

    Most MMOs make money my friend, and many even make good money.  Even SWTOR is making money right now, development costs have been earned back, and that game has a long time before them, MMOs is still where the money of the future is.  

    And i absolutely realise that the technollogy to create a game like i just described has been around for atleast 10 years, but so far the developers have been lazy and did not recognise that fact how important the open world illusion is for players immersion 

    IF you combine what WoW has been doing and how SWTOR handles story instances, you actually are pretty much where you want to be.

    The problem isn't that it requires a significant cost, but that the value of that cost is rather nebulous, and the value of applying the same cost to other parts of the game is clear.  As a game designer I would strongly prefer to spend that pretty significant chunk of dev time either on a new feature, or on enabling new types of monster abilities -- basically the types of things which are very discernable to all players, rather than something (streaming loading) which is only important to a small group.

    Honestly I find immersion comes far more in the form of how a world is presented than the load times.  Skyrims' and Mass Effects' worlds have been more immersive than anything I've experienced in an MMORPG, and it comes from (a) how the world and its inhabitants act, (b) level design, and (c) not having other players.  In MMORPGs I find that scripted behaviors of NPCs do far more to make a world feel immersive and alive than streaming loading would.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

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