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 the stalled state of tw2002 
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Chief Warrant Officer

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Unread post the stalled state of tw2002
I am unsatisfied with the development of tradewars. Mr. Pritchett either has no time or no interest in the game i have enjoyed for over 20 yrs.
I would like to see vast improvements in the game, such as new methods of cashing, ownership of stardock and class 0 ports, private shipyards, an improved underground for red players, universe events like the old days of "crystal entity", meteor showers and such...

I suggest Mr. Pritchett will not expand tradewars and it will languish and die.
I suggest to the tw community that we purchase the code and the rights to tradewars 2002. We make it public domain software and setup a development group. I believe the code will attract young and old programmers and we will see exponential growth as the yrs. roll by. Tradewars is a seminal gaming platform that is likely studied in "History of Online Gaming" at computer programming schools. The attraction to participate might be high. And of course we are not short on programmer / players.

Lets hear what you have to say, on this topic. Push it into all associated directions.

cc bee... out


Sun Mar 13, 2016 4:45 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Just an FYI, JP is still responding to bug reports. This is his response to the locked file that resulted in my team being invaded one fine morning. ;)

I think I know JP well enough to say that he has neither the time, nor the desire to stray from Classic TW 2002.

#1 Obstacle - Capital, no one can afford to work for free. But, I believe there's been a change in how people can raise money using crowd funding platforms. Now investors have shared ownership, like buying stock in a company.

Rather than changing the classic game, start from the beginning, with new modern code. Just a suggestion.

John Pritchett wrote:
"Unfortunately there are rare situations where I file can become locked like this. I doubt if it was some kind of back door. Unless it happens a lot, and especially if it's repeatable, there isn't much that can be done about it.

I'm sure you know this, but whenever there is a lock like this, it's good to reset the server and probably the machine itself. If a file lock doesn't get released by the system, the problem can persist until a reset.

John

http://www.tradewars.com
http://www.classictw.com
http://www.eisonline.com

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Sun Mar 13, 2016 7:59 pm
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Chief Warrant Officer

Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2014 5:39 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Hey CC,

My preference would be just to pay to release the code to fix the current problems.

Adding new features like you say would add some variation etc but to me risks more damage till current issues fixed.

The lock file problem for instance and other syncing issues over time sound to me like the game needs to be ported to a more modern database or a alternative structure. However that often pretty much requires a re-write of the code.

An idea would be to just crowd source a sum of money to get JP to release the trade mark. Then we could organize a open source (or other) re-write of the game without worrying about copywrite issues.

I've often toyed with the idea of building a replica game for "Fun" as I've been involved in other MUD like games over the years.

Out of the many open source MU* platforms out there I don't think any are particularly suited to trades wars unique playing style.

I think many of the part-time programmers who have inhabited trade-wars and criticized JPs programming actually have no idea the issues with syncing a client server application which is most likely single threaded and has to be fair to a variety of distributed data input sources. In a business application who cares if your data goes in 20ms after my data etc, these games really do offer some unique challenges.

It's a trivial process to make a tradewars like game, it's a very tricky proposition to make one that works well.

Anyway, I'd throw some money at it to keep it alive and well, whether that went to JP or another person with time on their hands.
I'd go with group consensus on where the game went.


Sun Mar 13, 2016 8:30 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
I've been thinking about this, too. Nothing is stopping any of us from writing our own TradeWars-like game. We just couldn't call it TradeWars. But I also think JP deserves a lot of credit for keeping the game going as long as he has. I would definitely put some cash down to help the community buy the rights to the game and open source it. It would have to be a permissive license, because I can see different people wanting to take the game in very different directions.

There are probably also some things that players would not like to see open sourced, like the haggle algorithm that apparently only EP has ever figured out in detail. But those features wouldn't necessarily carry over to future versions anyway, so JP could release a modified/simplified version to keep the secret for people who still want to play the old versions.

I definitely agree with Cruncher about a scratch rewrite being the best approach. I can only imagine what kind of nightmare a going on thirty-year-old code base would be. :)

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Sun Mar 13, 2016 10:44 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Hammer_2 wrote:
In a business application who cares if your data goes in 20ms after my data


Unless it's the stock market! There are some interesting parallels between TW bots and high frequency trading bots. Basically, whoever has the lowest ping enjoys a significant advantage. I've often thought that if someone ever figured out a way to level the playing field between TW bots and human players, it might carry over to real-world trade wars.

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Sun Mar 13, 2016 10:48 pm
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Joined: Mon May 11, 2015 8:36 am
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Mongoose wrote:
I've been thinking about this, too. Nothing is stopping any of us from writing our own TradeWars-like game. We just couldn't call it TradeWars. But I also think JP deserves a lot of credit for keeping the game going as long as he has. I would definitely put some cash down to help the community buy the rights to the game and open source it. It would have to be a permissive license, because I can see different people wanting to take the game in very different directions.

There are probably also some things that players would not like to see open sourced, like the haggle algorithm that apparently only EP has ever figured out in detail. But those features wouldn't necessarily carry over to future versions anyway, so JP could release a modified/simplified version to keep the secret for people who still want to play the old versions.

I definitely agree with Cruncher about a scratch rewrite being the best approach. I can only imagine what kind of nightmare a going on thirty-year-old code base would be. :)


I've dreamt of having this thing rewritten on a modern LAMP stack ever since I got back into tw. It would be so much nicer if it could run in an openstack environment (or AWS for that matter) instead of requiring a Windows VM. Hell, the fact it runs on Windows probably contributes to more than half the bugs and almost all of the lag related issues.


Mon Mar 14, 2016 12:34 am
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Shadow2 wrote:
I've dreamt of having this thing rewritten on a modern LAMP stack ever since I got back into tw. It would be so much nicer if it could run in an openstack environment (or AWS for that matter) instead of requiring a Windows VM. Hell, the fact it runs on Windows probably contributes to more than half the bugs and almost all of the lag related issues.

That's Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP (LAMP) stack for those that haven't learned to use google :)

I was looking at doing something cross platform, and MONO seemed like a good choice (Since C#/.Net is my prefered language), but I was very disappointed that it is using WinForms instead of WPF. That would be like going backwards 15 years for me. WinForms is also platform specific, so I would have to learn GDI# for Linux, and I have no idea what MAC uses. I couldn't get a blank app to compile in Visual Studio or Xarmin Studio (formerly MonoDevelop), so I've pretty much dumped the idea of doing anything cross platform.

Since speed and performance are key issues, it would probably be best to go with native Linux code anyway. I think a windows server would also work well, provided that a modern windows service was designed from scratch, but hosting for Windows servers is extremely expensive compared to Linux. TradeWars is written in an obsolete language and uses programming methods that have been depreciated by Microsoft. I'm almost surprised that it runs at all.

BTW, I hate Android, Linux, Mac, Java, etc..., etc...

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TWGS2.20b/TW3.34: telnet://twgs.microblaster.net:2002
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Mon Mar 14, 2016 11:36 am
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Chief Warrant Officer

Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2008 8:08 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
now your talking players.
i thought there would be interest.
The programming talk is over my head but like seeing you who are in the know get involved in this discussion.
Perhaps, someone should ask Mr. Pritchett if he would be willing to release the code to public domain... or find out how much the purchase price would be.
Obviously the interest is there, and the chance to take the game in new expansive directions intrigues me.
Cruncher, you have a connection to Mr. Pritchett, ask him to join this forum thread. It might reignite his interest in classic tw.
(i would also like to play with ease using a linux based machine).

cc bee.... out


Mon Mar 14, 2016 12:43 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Unfortunately, there isn't enough community left to support an open source project. The three of us commenting in this thread code on three different platforms, so we probably wouldn't be willing to work together, and there are very few others that would be interested.

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Website: http://www.microblaster.net
TWGS2.20b/TW3.34: telnet://twgs.microblaster.net:2002
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"The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight.”


Mon Mar 14, 2016 12:57 pm
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Chief Warrant Officer

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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
I'll buy TW2002. Your offer, JP?

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Mon Mar 14, 2016 2:31 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Well, you know I'm a Java fan. :) One of the reasons Java is so popular in enterprise applications is that apps need to be multi-threaded to effectively utilize multi-core CPUs. Java has very good support for multi-threading, so it's cost-effective to develop servers that perform well despite the overhead of the VM. And the overhead is a lot smaller than it used to be.

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Mon Mar 14, 2016 2:49 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
micro, light that lamp of imagination.

cbynot has indicated interest.

others will as well...

overcoming problems and obstacles is what we are talking about. So, we need solutions.

cc bee... out


Mon Mar 14, 2016 4:35 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
CBYNot wrote:
I'll buy TW2002. Your offer, JP?

He hasn't visited the forum in over 2 years... you will have to email jpritch@eisonline.com

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Website: http://www.microblaster.net
TWGS2.20b/TW3.34: telnet://twgs.microblaster.net:2002
TeamSpeak3: ts.microblaster.net:9987

"The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight.”


Mon Mar 14, 2016 5:49 pm
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Joined: Mon May 11, 2015 8:36 am
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Micro wrote:
Shadow2 wrote:
I've dreamt of having this thing rewritten on a modern LAMP stack ever since I got back into tw. It would be so much nicer if it could run in an openstack environment (or AWS for that matter) instead of requiring a Windows VM. Hell, the fact it runs on Windows probably contributes to more than half the bugs and almost all of the lag related issues.

That's Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP (LAMP) stack for those that haven't learned to use google :)

I was looking at doing something cross platform, and MONO seemed like a good choice (Since C#/.Net is my prefered language), but I was very disappointed that it is using WinForms instead of WPF. That would be like going backwards 15 years for me. WinForms is also platform specific, so I would have to learn GDI# for Linux, and I have no idea what MAC uses. I couldn't get a blank app to compile in Visual Studio or Xarmin Studio (formerly MonoDevelop), so I've pretty much dumped the idea of doing anything cross platform.

Since speed and performance are key issues, it would probably be best to go with native Linux code anyway. I think a windows server would also work well, provided that a modern windows service was designed from scratch, but hosting for Windows servers is extremely expensive compared to Linux. TradeWars is written in an obsolete language and uses programming methods that have been depreciated by Microsoft. I'm almost surprised that it runs at all.

BTW, I hate Android, Linux, Mac, Java, etc..., etc...


I hate Windows, so we each hate something. :) Actually I hate Linux too, really; the BSD networking stack is SO much better than any of the Linux versions, but Linux won due to UI (sound familiar?)

Anyway, I agree with you re: client/server. I was talking stricly about the server. I don't do client UI and don't care. :) I am more interested in high performance server code.


Mon Mar 14, 2016 7:28 pm
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Unread post Re: the stalled state of tw2002
Mongoose wrote:
Well, you know I'm a Java fan. :) One of the reasons Java is so popular in enterprise applications is that apps need to be multi-threaded to effectively utilize multi-core CPUs. Java has very good support for multi-threading, so it's cost-effective to develop servers that perform well despite the overhead of the VM. And the overhead is a lot smaller than it used to be.


Than it used to be... can you say (ahem) garbage collection? I knew you could :)

Java is still a 4GL (despite the apologists who try to claim it's 3GL). But hey, I prefer K&R C, so what do I know.


Mon Mar 14, 2016 7:30 pm
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