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The One Man MMO Project
The story of a lone developer's quest to build an online world :: MMO programming, design, and industry commentary
By Robert Basler on 2011-11-23 09:41:08
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
Bigpoint managed to sell 2,000 spaceship drones for 1,000 in just 4 days. That's two million euros (US$2,596,400) in just four days selling entries in a database. Wow. Here's the story.
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By Robert Basler on 2011-11-21 16:05:32
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
So as of yesterday I'm Tweeting on Twitter. The writer in me quite likes how Twitter forces you to refine your thoughts to make them fit in just 140 characters.

I'll be Tweeting links any time I put a post here, so if you prefer Twitter to RSS, go ahead and switch over.

My tweeting is a result of me attending the Canadian Games Conference this year. One of the more interesting presentations I went to was the social marketing talk. You can check out the full talk on video, there's a link here: http://onemanmmo.com/?cgc11.

I also wrote a URL-shortener for the blog. It is something I've been meaning to do for a while - ever since I first considered using Twitter. In an ironic twist, there's no point in having a URL-shortener with Twitter anymore, since they shorten all URL's with their t.co service. But I've long wanted to be able to post more human-friendly URL's for pages on this blog, so I did it anyway. Only took a couple hours to add the database table and forms for entering the short URL's. In case you're looking, I haven't made it a public service. I will probably integrate it further into the blog in the future. Baby steps.

My Twitter picture looks like I'm looking at the birds on my Twitter page. Note to self: get a new picture.
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By Robert Basler on 2011-11-21 01:48:07
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
Hey, another one man MMO! There's an interview with the developer at Rock, Paper, Shotgun or the game itself is at www.dark-wind.com.
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By Robert Basler on 2011-11-17 10:09:51
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
This is appalling.

Not that Hangame lost their data due to botched backups. That happens all the time. It's that they're killing the game over it. What that says to me is that the game wasn't really economically viable anyway and maybe that one of the commenters on the story is correct that "it is a ruse and [they] are taking the money and running."

For the rest of us working on microtransaction games, this is the doomsday scenario.
By Robert Basler on 2011-11-06 11:51:32
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
I've been following Star Corsairs which is an indie MMO being developed here in Canada by Dave Toulouse. (He also wrote another MMO called Golemizer.) A couple of months ago he got laid off (like me) so he decided to work full time (like me) on an independent MMO (like me.) He developed his game in just 4 months (not so much like me) and released it in October.

This weekend he announced he is quitting as a full-time indie to go back to outside employment, just 3 weeks after the launch of his latest game. He got a reality cheque - for $273.31 - his game's total income for the first two weeks after release.

For me that's very troubling, given that this is his second game and at least 100,000 people have heard of Golemizer. This single data point has forced a rethinking of my schedule. Up until now I've been building features based on the theory that all core features are needed equally, so it doesn't really matter what order they're done in. I've been doing them in whatever order is most convenient. That changes today.

I realized I've been making a classic error. One I've been warned about, and to a certain extent, one I recognized I was doing, but one I was nevertheless still making. I failed to recognize the urgency of the situation until I read about Star Corsairs launch. So thanks Dave, for sharing.
By Robert Basler on 2011-11-04 11:19:01
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
I broke 100,000 lines of code this week! 100,223 lines in 642 files. This doesn't include libraries I'm using that I didn't write - Berkelium alone is 40 times the size of my game code. My game isn't a million lines like some of the games I used to work on, but the build times are sure a heck of a lot shorter.

100,223!!!

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By Robert Basler on 2011-10-25 01:10:26
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com

A Chrome UI Part 1 & Part Deux.

I've been working on adding a more-complete user interface to my game. The UI screens I've done up to this point have been static pages (splash screen) or simple forms (login screen.) This week I've really gotten into it. I've been adding a HUD. The HUD is tricky because it needs to interact with the game, as well as update its internal state and display based on user input. It needs to be slick looking and responsive.

Ready for the acronyms? I'm building the HUD with HTML, CSS, Javascript and AJAX. Just one out of those four isn't borken.


By Robert Basler on 2011-10-06 20:57:30
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
EA is banning players from all of their games because they're (perhaps unknowingly) playing on pirated servers.

Tobold got himself banned from Facebook for not using his real name. He has put money into Facebook games, now he's looking to get some of that money back.

That got me thinking about the funds attached to game accounts when they are banned. Should a company refund them?
By Robert Basler on 2011-10-04 13:54:17
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
I spent yesterday coding up the screens and code to create new characters (I don't really have characters, but characters gives you the idea what I'm working on while I remain vague about what I'm actually doing.)

When I added a delete character button to the screen, it occurred to me that I was working on my first official microtransaction feature. Because no matter how many times you ask the user "are you sure?" a few of them are going to barrel right through the red text and blinking lights and delete something they didn't mean to.

In the old days, you'd add the delete button, have it nuke some files and that'd be it. There was no reason to build an undelete feature into most software.

But with an MMO with microtransactions, you have an opportunity to earn some revenue by adding a user-friendly feature.
By Robert Basler on 2011-09-28 11:52:39
Homepage: www.onemanmmo.com email:one at onemanmmo dot com
From the time I originally envisioned this project until today, I have been dreaming of a fully persistent world. It's time to let that dream go.

Lately I've been finalizing my game design. Refining the big picture feature set. Taking the features I've decided to do and figuring out how they are actually going to work. That has involved a lot of navel-gazing, competitor research, and reading an unbelievable amount of game criticism, armchair design blogs and game theory.

No matter how I slice it, I just can't think of a way to build a purely persistent-world game where the no-lifers don't eat the newbs for breakfast. You can help out new players, give them extra powers, add safety nets, but at some point, they're going to have to sink or swim in a pool full of pirahnas. This isn't the ideal scenario for retaining a healthy volume of mainstream players.

More Posts

Project Line Counter in Visual Studio 2010 - 2011-06-04 00:01:45 (5 comments)
A Chrome UI - 2011-04-07 10:28:46 (6 comments)
Enabling NVidia GPUs on Optimus Laptops - 2014-12-03 02:31:40 (4 comments)
Looking for a Fast Square Root - 2012-03-29 11:19:56 (4 comments)
Return of The Fallen Release Notes - 2017-12-21 15:07:24 (0 comments)
What I CAN Tell You - 2017-10-08 15:00:08 (0 comments)
So Many Glitches - 2018-03-05 01:35:44 (2 comments)
8 Years of Development - 2017-11-04 15:53:48 (0 comments)
Early Access Week One - 2017-05-17 19:42:05 (0 comments)

Recent Comments

Anniversary! - 2018-05-12 13:33:26 (4 comments)
Thanks for the feedback Dondergod, I don't think you are alone in that evaluation.

I have extensively considered F2P, but it doesn't foster the type of community and game experience I'm trying to build. It also brings a whole pile of design, ...
Anniversary! - 2018-05-12 04:52:16 (4 comments)
To be honest, it's the reason why I decided not to buy into the game.
While I really like the concept and even the gameplay from the test sessions that I've played, I've already looked at a lot of MMORTS, and they all have the same issue.

No one plays ...
Anniversary! - 2018-05-10 13:33:49 (4 comments)
Thank you. Hopefully people are a little happier with the visuals with the next update. After that, the plan is to work on getting more units into the game, adding more missions, and making The Fallen into a more formidable adversary.
Anniversary! - 2018-05-10 02:46:05 (4 comments)
Well i think the games great, agreed the visuals are a bit dated but the concept is good. I also agree more solo content is needed with the occasional pvp element, there just isnt enough people yet for a pvp only focused game. I still think that it ...
Enabling NVidia GPUs on Optimus Laptops - 2018-04-05 00:18:12 (4 comments)
NOTE: the nVidia steps 1-5 above take approximately 4 seconds to complete. I've pulled them out and only call them once.
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