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From SketchUp to Second Life

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 7 years ago | from the easy-shapes-made-easier dept.

84

writes "Roo Reynolds of Eightbar (an external blog written by some IBMers) has put together a tool to export Google SketchUp models and import them into Second Life. It only seems to work for fairly basic objects, and cylinders and non-rectangular surfaces 'are particularly badly hit.' Along with the Prim.Blender project, this sort of tool looks like it could make building in Second Life considerably easier, allowing people to choose their preferred tool rather than be constrained to the in-world editor."

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first (-1, Offtopic)

Bob The Mutant Hamst (1005725) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286845)

post!

Where's GNU2ndLife? (1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 7 years ago | (#16291279)

If I'm going to pretend I'm a single, metrosexual in a rubberized town, I want to do it libre AND gratis.

Re:Where's GNU2ndLife? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16292133)

http://www.libsecondlife.org/ [libsecondlife.org]

Re:Where's GNU2ndLife? (1)

mindtriggerz (914619) | more than 7 years ago | (#16293293)

libsecondlife (http://libsecondlife.org/ [libsecondlife.org] ), our reverse engineering of the SL protocol, is coming to maturity. Although I don't think Linden Labs would like us to work on server software though, we've been lucky to have their blessing so far...

This sounds kind of neat. (1)

slimjim8094 (941042) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286859)

Maybe it will get more people into 3D modeling. I wish more games did that, for stuff like your house, or a hat or something. There are definitely better examples; although they would need to be checked to make sure that somebody didn't import a giant phallus [wikipedia.org] into the game, and stick it on the front of their house.

Still, this is a cool idea. It could make games more interactive, to the people who want to deviate a bit.

Re:This sounds kind of neat. (1)

Bob The Mutant Hamst (1005725) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286905)

Actually, you can make stuff like that using the ingame editor.
What would be really cool is importing models from games and stuff into second life.

Re:This sounds kind of neat. (2, Informative)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286989)

There are plenty of giant phalli. This doesn't let you do anything you couldn't already do. It's just helpful if you already are used to working with a certain tool. Or when SL is down, like right now (and about 20% of the time, lately).

Of course you are going to be pretty constrained translating everything into constructive solid geometry without boolean (other than AND) operators, which is all SL supports.

Re:This sounds kind of neat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287635)

Er, there's already giant phalli in the game. You can stick them on your house provided you are in a mature area.

There are avie skins too. You really can walk around looking like a giant penis.

Strangely enough, it stops being interesting after about five minutes. Who knew there's a timer in SL too?

Zbrush + Sketchup (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16292909)

Sketch Up for environments, buildings.

Zbrush for characters.

Will someone (or they?) combine the features?

Who writes? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16286861)

An empty string? An inviisble man?

Will this come off the AP Wire? (1)

Admin_Jason (1004461) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286871)

"3d glasses have seen a resurgence in sales recently as 3-dimensional rendering in graphics programs becomes utilitarian and accessible to the masses. Says one 3-d reader, "It's like watching those movies back in the 80's all over again! I love it!' " On a more serious note, I would be interested in seeing how the vectoring works on stuff like this as Photoshop is the gold standard upon which vectoring is based, so if there are improvements to be made in the algorithmic calculations - design could become even more amazing as a field of study!

Vectoring? (1)

gcnaddict (841664) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287253)

I thought Illustrator is the gold standard in vectoring, and that Flash is the gold standard in animated vectoring.

Photoshop is a gold standard in rastering :P

Re:Vectoring? (1)

Admin_Jason (1004461) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287837)

It is, I mis-spoke, thanks. Was app-specific when I should have just referred to the vendor. You get the gist though...

Linux Version? (1)

MeNeXT (200840) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286909)

I would love to see a Linux versin. Anyone know if one is planned?

Re:Linux Version? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287163)

Posting anonymously because I'm the Google employee working on porting SketchUp to LiGNUX. Expect it later this year. I'm not sure if the commercial version will be ported -- it depends on closed source libraries for exporting videos and such.

Thank You (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287585)

Your effort is appreciated. I look forward to playing with it.

Re:Linux Version? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287705)

This is your supervisor - yes, really. Come see me when you get in tomorrow morning.

Re:Linux Version? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16288307)

And I'm Sergey. Both of you stop by my office tomorrow, first thing in the morning.

Re:Linux Version? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16289471)

And I'm Steve Ballmer. I'll fucking kill you.

Re:Linux Version? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16290219)

This is God speaking. Mr. Brin, I'd like to see you this afternoon since you'll be in the neighborhood after your meeting with Mr. Ballmer.

Mr. Ballmer himself has an appointment... uhm, elsewhere.

Re:Linux Version? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16288957)

Using Qt? ....so a mac version shortly after, right?

The in-game editor isn't easy? (2, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286917)

I've found it a LOT easier to use than Second Life. Hell, if you're going to use external editors, you want something more powerful not something easier to use.. that's why most people use Blender or 3ds Max. Of course, if you're going to use an external editor, what point is there importing the stuff into Second Life? Develop an Open platform.

Re:The in-game editor isn't easy? (2, Insightful)

Telvin_3d (855514) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287335)

Of course, if you're going to use an external editor, what point is there importing the stuff into Second Life? Develop an Open platform.

What point is there importing it into Second Life? My guess is that this is aimed at people that are creating assets specifically for use IN second life. These aren't people who are creating stuff and then go looking for a venue to publish it. They know their venue and they are looking for better tools to address it. Really it's like asking what's the point of using World of Warcraft's character generator to make a character specifically for WoW. Why not create a OPEN character generator instead?

Re:The in-game editor isn't easy? (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 7 years ago | (#16289505)

Actually, he's asking why use some external character editor for WoW, and if you're going to use some external character editor to just play your own MMORPG.

Re:The in-game editor isn't easy? (1)

Moofie (22272) | more than 7 years ago | (#16293377)

"Develop an Open platform."

Great idea! I'll get right on it.

Oh wait, I can't program. Now what? Guess I'll use tools somebody else has written. Hey! Cool! This Google Sketch Up thing is free of charge, and remarkably handy! Bonus!

OpenCroquet anyone? (1)

dfries (466073) | more than 7 years ago | (#16343831)

http://www.opencroquet.org/ [opencroquet.org] is out there, but it has been at 1.0 Beta since April this year. The bug lists show activity, but what I can't seem to find is any public Internet 'island' servers for OpenCroquet, so I can't very well see how it works with more than one person. OpenCroquet has more promise for developers, but has many less people.

Are there public OpenCroquet islands out there? Any links? I haven't found any yet.

Ummm... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16286939)

This is fucking gay.

< )
  ( \
    X
8====D

Re:Ummm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16289535)

Welcome back Penis Bird... we've missed you.

When someone tells me to... (0)

PurifyYourMind (776223) | more than 7 years ago | (#16286971)

...get a life, is this what they mean?

Re:When someone tells me to... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287641)

...get a life, is this what they mean?

Does Half Life 2 count as a whole life?

Re:When someone tells me to... (1)

PurifyYourMind (776223) | more than 7 years ago | (#16298665)

The way Half Life 2 is written on the box, etc., it looks like an exponent, meaning you've got 1/4 of a life at best.

(Friend Spam) In Game Editor Augmentation (3, Informative)

LordStrange (19871) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287051)

If you like building in SL but hate the tedium, you should check out Skidz Primz [slexchange.com] . It builds a intuitive UI around regular prims. Especially useful when trying to put many prims together.

(Skidz is a friend and I couldn't resist pimping his tools. Dont hold this spam against him please)

Re:(Friend Spam) In Game Editor Augmentation (2, Interesting)

John Hurliman (152784) | more than 7 years ago | (#16288495)

While we are talking about related projects, we (the libsecondlife [libsecondlife.org] project) are working on a C# importer and exporter for xml prim data. The .prims format that prim.blender uses now has an XSD and primimport and primexport are both in early testing. A screenshot is up here [jhurliman.org] . Sometime in the next couple months we hope to have a completely open design chain for Second Life where you can model and texture in any combination of Second Life, SketchUp, prim.blender, or whatever comes up.

why do i see so many second life links on slashdot (2, Interesting)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287101)

is there some sort of link deal?

Re:why do i see so many second life links on slash (1)

speckledpig (880809) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287133)

I wish this worked for there.com.

Re:why do i see so many second life links on slash (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287153)

There is total crap compared to Secondlife. It's like comparing Chuck E. Cheese to Vegas. There isn't a virtual world, it's just a big, heavily censored, sandbox for kids.

Re:why do i see so many second life links on slash (5, Funny)

veganboyjosh (896761) | more than 7 years ago | (#16288095)

hey now. what happens at chucky cheese...stays at chucky cheese.

Re:why do i see so many second life links on slash (1)

speckledpig (880809) | more than 7 years ago | (#16288661)

Where are the hoverboards in SL!???!??! HMMMMMM?!??!?!

Re:why do i see so many second life links on slash (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 7 years ago | (#16291111)

You get one in the default inventory library I think. :P

Re:why do i see so many second life links on slash (2, Interesting)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 7 years ago | (#16290555)

It's not censored at all (the top places either deal with gambling or sex).

To many slashdot readers the idea of a big sandbox would be very tempting.

I guess you're just one of those guys that want everything handed out, with no constructive, social or creative skills needed.

Re:why do i see so many second life links on slash (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 7 years ago | (#16291073)

You know I'm talking about There.com and not Secondlife. There's no sex on There.

What about half-life? (5, Funny)

Karma Sucks (127136) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287115)

I still haven't upgraded... will this work with half-life?

Re:What about half-life? (1)

NMerriam (15122) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287661)

*groan*

well-played, sir.

oOo! (1)

misey (996068) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287129)

I really like this idea. It gets a thumbs up! I find that Sketchup is easy AND powerful. I actually just discovered it last week, and I really like making stuff. i really want to try this out. Thanks!

Now One For Hammer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287147)

Now if they can make a straightforward export from SketchUp into Hammer, we'd be all set.

Wow! (1)

Deadguy2322 (761832) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287151)

16 posts about a MMO and no EVE astroturfing yet!

I DESPISE linking to a blog that links to a blog (4, Informative)

gmezero (4448) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287167)

Just friggin' link to the ACTUAL SOURCE [eightbar.co.uk] !!!

Must not be a Mac user... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287255)

I'm still waiting for a SketchUp that will work on an Intel Mac.

Yeah, I know they claim it'll run under Rosetta. Whatever. I see everything from drawing errors to frequent crashes. Not usable.

Hello, Google, you there? I know you say "Don't be evil" a lot, but your whole (non-web) business model seems to be "buy a company, add Beta to the title, and try as hard as possible to make non-Windows users feel like second-class citizens". Could you try to maybe be a teensy bit nicer to us for once? Thanks!

Re:Must not be a Mac user... (1)

a55clown (723455) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287363)

What ever happened to "it just plain works"?

seriously (or am i?), they must be working on a web-app version of it, just like their spreadsheet and calendar thingies. god forbid a vector drawing program written in ajax...

WTF? (1)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287273)

So where the hell do I download it?
Nowhere in any of those articles does it say it's not finished yet...

Harder than you would think (3, Funny)

Gerocrack (979018) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287275)

Gotta practice making boobies in Sketch-Up now.

just for the record (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287329)

Unless you do something extraordinary in your life or you're really really knowledgeable on some subject your little fucking blog doesn't mean shit to the real world.

Stop posting articles that link to some fags blog. it's shit and you should fucking die.

Hi there! You appear to be making a threat. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16287941)

Would you like to be

[x] visited
    by
        [ ] Department of Homeland Security
            [ ] join Club "Gitmo"
        [ ] District Attorney
            [ ] inferior/Article VII "courts"
                [ ] Voluntary involuntary repressions
        [x] Monica Lewinsky

[ ] arrested and transported to the local jailer by the
        local Police Department where you
    [ ] are violated by the Jumbo Shrimp of Bubba Gump
    [ ] stripped naked, wrapped in a rug, beaten, maybe
            get "pink-eye" from sleeping on the floor
        [ ] solitary confinemnt, so you heal any unsightly wounds

[x] Shutup and enjoy your feedom, thanks to the Security And Prosperity Partnership [spp.gov] to cause the unallowed re-organization into the Pan-American/North American union

?

Re:Hi there! You appear to be making a threat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16288085)

You need to look up the definition of threat, faggot motherfucker.

First Life (1)

ThreeE (786934) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287381)

Get a first life.

Of Course it Sucks and is Incomplete (3, Interesting)

A*OnYourA** (946354) | more than 7 years ago | (#16287527)

Anything other than exporting faces of cubes would be extremely difficult. SL prims are based off parametric equations and are incompatible with 3D models based on sets of vertices (Sketchup).

If someone found an efficient algorithm to convert 3D models based off vertices into a group of simple parametric objects, they would be very, very rich. It would be the Computer Graphics equivalent of an alchemist discovering a way to convert copper into gold.

What this guy did was paint a piece of copper with liquified gold, then wrote a blurb about how great it would be if this was pure gold. It's not, although it's good to dream. I'm sure a lot of alchemists made progress in chemistry just by trying to solve the copper-into-gold problem. I just don't think people should get their hopes up about a Sketchup to SL importer that does anything worthwhile.

Re:Of Course it Sucks and is Incomplete (1)

MORB (793798) | more than 7 years ago | (#16289301)

I think they might aswell get rid of the parametric prims in second life and just store regular meshes. People seem to make so complicated things in that game anyway that I think it would be much more efficient (with client side caching of the meshes like they do for textures, and along with some form of progressive lod)

Or perhaps a mix of primitive based stuff for simple objects like walls etc., and switch to a mesh representation for anything complex.

Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (2, Insightful)

martijnd (148684) | more than 7 years ago | (#16288569)

I tried Second Life for a bit recently, they have a Linux version and I have a new graphics card. So I'd figure I'd give it a go. Its really quite nice, some of the graphics are amazing, and I had great fun playing with the various in world scripts. It is however constraint in its usefullness at the moment.

My nags at the moment:
  • I want to run my own server, I don't feel like paying an increasing monthly fee to just build the world I would like to share with my friends, considering how many "islands" there are, quite a few people are keen to have their own place appart. But if I would like to build something massive, like an insane bookstore that would cost a fortune.
  • I want to write my own scripts, that can take data from other sources and generate objects accordingly
  • It is a social experiment in that its has its own currency and trading mechanisms etc, fun, but closed.
  • Closed source -- so its not going anywhere fast

This feels a bit like the really popular early BBS services -- they are on to something here though. Instead of chatting in yellow text on a black background at 3am, you could be sitting on a virtual campfire with your chat friends next to a beach, instead of typing smilies, you set of fireworks. If this escapes into the real world, it could possibly be a similar step as from the BBS communities to the Internet

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16289361)

I tried out Second Life a couple of months ago. It is a nice gimmick, but I just can't get into it.

I played with the building tools, and then tried out the scripting, and then played with the physics and particles... and then ran out of interesting things to do. The physics engine is just too limiting. Once you realise that stuff like swaying trees and wind aren't that clever, and are a bit of a hack/trick, it loses its appeal somewhat.

Even the chat isn't that interesting. Nice people on the whole, but kinda uninteresting. Then you come to the whole control issue. Imagine a DRM future, where everything you do it watched and regulated by a computer... where every object is subjected to computer control, and every bit of land is owned by someone and their minute wishes are imposed -- can't even walk on a piece of land because the computer stops you etc etc etc. It's frustrating to find that a virtual environment is governed exclusively by money because Linden Labs tied land to physical servers and charge money for them... and consequently wanted a way for "residents" to make money to pay THEM... and consequently virtually everything is SL is a billboard or an advert, or a casino... and everyone is touting wares. It gets old really fast. You are supposed to have different second life, not one that is just as obsessed with money and property and the first one.

Having said that, there are some great places that aren't just sales-pitches, like the International Space Museum. But on the whole, Second Life is a serious disappointment and I now only login occasionally to see if anything has changed.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16294327)

Two words: Cyber sex. Here are some more words. If all you did is try to build and walk around, you are missing the "real" fun (pun intended).

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16298109)

I tried it... I went to a few of those adult clubs (Bad Girls was one, the Amsterdam free sex community was another). Watching low detail females dancing doesn't do it for me. Especially when their responses were a lot like bots.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 7 years ago | (#16289435)

I want to run my own server, I don't feel like paying an increasing monthly fee to just build the world I would like to share with my friends, considering how many "islands" there are, quite a few people are keen to have their own place appart. But if I would like to build something massive, like an insane bookstore that would cost a fortune.

I have had similar thoughts myself. It should be possible to get it working as a peer to peer system and it occurs to me that the network topology would be similar in some ways to bittorrent. If you have open protocols you could ensure interoperability however there would be no guarantee about the behavior of an open source client. Centralised systems (WoW, etc) have DRM in some form to ensure that the players play by the rules.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

misleb (129952) | more than 7 years ago | (#16292379)

I have had similar thoughts myself. It should be possible to get it working as a peer to peer system and it occurs to me that the network topology would be similar in some ways to bittorrent. If you have open protocols you could ensure interoperability however there would be no guarantee about the behavior of an open source client. Centralised systems (WoW, etc) have DRM in some form to ensure that the players play by the rules.


"DRM?" Are you f'n serious? A server that enforces certain game mechanics is not DRM in any way shape or form. You sound like a politician refering to hacking as "terrorism."

And a peer to peer game like that would not work. Note that with bittorrent you don't have a connection to every other person in the swarm, which would be required to synchronize game data. And to make things worse, you are not guaranteed information in any particular order. Your client performance would only be as good as your weakest peer link. A peer to peer game would be quite unscalable beyond 2 or maybe 3 clients.

-matthew

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 7 years ago | (#16301879)

And a peer to peer game like that would not work. Note that with bittorrent you don't have a connection to every other person in the swarm, which would be required to synchronize game data.

No. This is only required if each client needs to hold the whole gameworld. However, if you divide the gameworld into cells (the wolrd can still be one huge area, this division is purely an implementation detail), and assign each cell to a client, and make each client connect to the clients with neighbouring cells, then you can simply connect to the peer holding the cell you're currently on. You walk over its limits, and you connect to the peer holding the cell you're now on and disconnect from the old one (in practice you'd want to hold connections to the cells that are next to the one you're currently in to ensure smooth transitions and allowing you to see over the cell border when near it). Since each client is the authoritative source for its own cell data, it doesn't need to update anything besides the clients connected to it (and possibly the neighbouring cell), and the world scales infinitely (and of course each client can have more than one cell, depending on its capacity).

You still need to specify behavior for when parts of gameworld crash, for example.

And to make things worse, you are not guaranteed information in any particular order. Your client performance would only be as good as your weakest peer link. A peer to peer game would be quite unscalable beyond 2 or maybe 3 clients.

Like I hope I showed, this is purely a design issue, not a fundamental property of P2P networks.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

misleb (129952) | more than 7 years ago | (#16306993)

You still need to specify behavior for when parts of gameworld crash, for example.


Oh, gee, is that all? Seems to me that that is the difficult part. Not only do clients crash, but also disconnect, reconnect, etc. Any game with lots of players has clients connecting and disconnecting all the time. You're going to spend all your time repartitioning and synchronizing the game world. Not to mention all the game data that will be lost when a cell disappears leaving any player in it in limbo. At some point you are going to need a dedicated "tracker." And you might as well just make that the game server. And if that server can't handle the whole game world, then you add another and have them control cells. Having centralized game servers actually SOLVED the problems with peer to peer gaming... not the other way around.

And to make things worse, you are not guaranteed information in any particular order. Your client performance would only be as good as your weakest peer link. A peer to peer game would be quite unscalable beyond 2 or maybe 3 clients.

Like I hope I showed, this is purely a design issue, not a fundamental property of P2P networks.


You're right. You'd have to at least partition the game world. But as I hope I showed, there are fundamental problem with P2P networks that make it totally unsuitable for modern massively multiplayer gaming.

-matthew

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 7 years ago | (#16308411)

Oh, gee, is that all? Seems to me that that is the difficult part. Not only do clients crash, but also disconnect, reconnect, etc. Any game with lots of players has clients connecting and disconnecting all the time. You're going to spend all your time repartitioning and synchronizing the game world. Not to mention all the game data that will be lost when a cell disappears leaving any player in it in limbo.

I'm talking about sandbox games, not the kind where cheating matters - think cyberspace, not World of Warcraft. With cheating meaningless, you can simply have the client reconnect to any cell it happens to know about, and these cells can take the clients word for the players state.

Of course, if the client maintained connections to more than one cell (for example, to the cell the player is currently on and every neighbouring cell), the only real question is to which of these neighbouring cells should the player be teleported ? THe collapsed part could simply be unavailable until that cell comes back.

If you don't care about making the gameworld a single space, you could even work such events into the game plotline - maybe the universe collapsed, and the cells are the remaining splinters, connected loosely to each other with ever-changing connections and popping in and out of existence randomly ? The players would then try to survive in this post-apocalyptic multiverse.

At some point you are going to need a dedicated "tracker." And you might as well just make that the game server. And if that server can't handle the whole game world, then you add another and have them control cells.

That costs money, so you'll have to make it somehow. It also means that you have all the power in the game (since you control the server on which everything depends), so no other user has any.

Having centralized game servers actually SOLVED the problems with peer to peer gaming... not the other way around.

It solved some technical issues, but added a lot of social ones. Basically, only large corporations can run MMOG servers, but nearly anyone can run a Gnutella client. I want to see a MMOG that does not depend on any such authority, but only from its players.

You're right. You'd have to at least partition the game world. But as I hope I showed, there are fundamental problem with P2P networks that make it totally unsuitable for modern massively multiplayer gaming.

But nothing says that modern massively multiplayer gaming needs to stay incompatible with the concept. Or that this thing has anything to do with modern MMORPGs - my interest is seeing if such a thing could be done as Free Open Source and without the need of central server (which always means that someone has final control over the game, and likely monthly fees as well).

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

misleb (129952) | more than 7 years ago | (#16310471)

If you don't care about making the gameworld a single space, you could even work such events into the game plotline - maybe the universe collapsed, and the cells are the remaining splinters, connected loosely to each other with ever-changing connections and popping in and out of existence randomly ? The players would then try to survive in this post-apocalyptic multiverse.


Ok, if the game plot/mechanics were specifically taylored to the nature of peer to peer networks, I imagine it could work. But given the limitations, you'd have a very specific type of game. What I think you would end up with is only a very loosely connected group of worlds rather than cells within a single, coherent game.

At some point you are going to need a dedicated "tracker." And you might as well just make that the game server. And if that server can't handle the whole game world, then you add another and have them control cells.

That costs money, so you'll have to make it somehow.

Plenty of games manage to find servers to host games for free. Even open source games. I could host one where I work if I really wanted to. I've hosted free MUDs before.

It also means that you have all the power in the game (since you control the server on which everything depends), so no other user has any.

Owning the server doesn't necessarily equate to "power" unless you are worried about cheating. But I thought you said cheating wasn't a consideration. If you mean "power" in the sense of low ping times, then you have the same issue with peer to peer. The "owner" of a cell always has the best ping time.

It solved some technical issues, but added a lot of social ones. Basically, only large corporations can run MMOG servers, but nearly anyone can run a Gnutella client. I want to see a MMOG that does not depend on any such authority, but only from its players.


I would like to see a free MMOG idea that was even worth such an effort to design as p2p.

But nothing says that modern massively multiplayer gaming needs to stay incompatible with the concept. Or that this thing has anything to do with modern MMORPGs - my interest is seeing if such a thing could be done as Free Open Source and without the need of central server (which always means that someone has final control over the game, and likely monthly fees as well).


But if the game is open source, anyone can start a free server. Anyone who dared charge for the game would quickly see people leaving for the free servers that are out there. There would have to be some technical requirement driving the P2P design. I don't see any real "social" barriers. Free hosting is not really that hard to find.

-matthew

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 7 years ago | (#16313241)

Ok, if the game plot/mechanics were specifically taylored to the nature of peer to peer networks, I imagine it could work. But given the limitations, you'd have a very specific type of game. What I think you would end up with is only a very loosely connected group of worlds rather than cells within a single, coherent game.

You can make either, but a network of connected worlds works better when cell servers go up and down - in a unified world certain cells becoming inaccessible will seem weird, to put it mildly. It also allows the cell network to grow better - a unified world needs to have the cell network reflect the geometry of the world to work well.

Perhaps it could be the MMOG version of the Web - worlds with links (portals) to other worlds ?

Owning the server doesn't necessarily equate to "power" unless you are worried about cheating.

It does - you can force a locally running program to do whatever you want, or, using Real Ultimate Power, remove the plug from the wall.

But I thought you said cheating wasn't a consideration.

It cannot possibly be prevented in a setup like that, so the game must be designed so that cheating is meaningless.

I would like to see a free MMOG idea that was even worth such an effort to design as p2p.

Well, if you can get the underlaying technology layer working well, then what's stopping you from designing your own ? Or joining an existing world and making your corner of it work differently ? That's one of the reasons I'm so interested in p2p-MMOG. It would reduce the barrier of entry significantly by removing the need to run a server.

But if the game is open source, anyone can start a free server. Anyone who dared charge for the game would quickly see people leaving for the free servers that are out there.

You do realize that this is a good thing for the players, right ?

There would have to be some technical requirement driving the P2P design. I don't see any real "social" barriers. Free hosting is not really that hard to find.

Free hosting that scales to thousands or tens of thousands of players and doesn't pull the plug when someone finds their kid engaged in cybersex in-game ? I don't think so.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

misleb (129952) | more than 7 years ago | (#16314707)

Perhaps it could be the MMOG version of the Web - worlds with links (portals) to other worlds ?


"The web" was kind of what I was thinking. I think we're talking about a "game" in a very loose sense of the term.

Owning the server doesn't necessarily equate to "power" unless you are worried about cheating.

It does - you can force a locally running program to do whatever you want, or, using Real Ultimate Power, remove the plug from the wall.


So you move to another server with a maintainer that you like. Isn't that what the p2p design would probably amount to anyway? You'd just spend all your time in whatever subworld (peer) you liked best... only it wouldn't always be online when you wanted to visit. It would pop in and out of existence at the whim of the user! At least a dedicated server is likely to be online 24/7.

Well, if you can get the underlaying technology layer working well, then what's stopping you from designing your own ? Or joining an existing world and making your corner of it work differently ? That's one of the reasons I'm so interested in p2p-MMOG. It would reduce the barrier of entry significantly by removing the need to run a server.


But finding a server to host your game is not the barrier to writing a free MMOG. Look at any current FOSS multiplayer game out there. They have servers. What they often don't have are good artwork, balanced game mechanics, and overall polish. The hard part is actualy developing the game. Trying to make it work peer to peer adds yet another layer of complexity that I don't think your average open source project can handle without taking away from the three things they are already lacking.

But if the game is open source, anyone can start a free server. Anyone who dared charge for the game would quickly see people leaving for the free servers that are out there.

You do realize that this is a good thing for the players, right ?


Indeed it is. That is why I'm not worried about an open source game server demanding money. If an open source multiplayer game is any good, and people are interested in it, there will be plenty of free servers to choose from. It is really a non-issue.

Free hosting that scales to thousands or tens of thousands of players


Show me a free, open source game that is good enough to attract tens of thousands of simutaneous users, and I'll consider the idea of making it run p2p.

and doesn't pull the plug when someone finds their kid engaged in cybersex in-game ? I don't think so.


Oh please. When does this happen? You are totally making up "barriers" that don't exist and ignoring the real barriers to making a good FOSS game.

Don't get me wrong, I think that a peer to peer game would be neat but only as a academic excercise. I don't really think there is much of a need for it. It would hardly be a "game" at all. It would be more like the web with isolated "sites" that pop in and out of existence.

-matthew

Second Life -- needs to escape its making money. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16290245)

"# I want to run my own server, I don't feel like paying an increasing monthly fee to just build the world I would like to share with my friends, considering how many "islands" there are, quite a few people are keen to have their own place appart. But if I would like to build something massive, like an insane bookstore that would cost a fortune."

First time I've ever heard "making a living" described as a "nag".

"Closed source -- so its not going anywhere fast"

And from the mountain he came. Carrying two tablets. Proclaming the new open source religion.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 7 years ago | (#16290483)

So basically you want all the work that went into making SL... but not pay for it?

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

eggstasy (458692) | more than 7 years ago | (#16290507)

Excuse me? You want to write your own scripts? Everyone can write scripts, all you need to do is click on the New Script button :)
As for taking data from various sources, well, Second Life supports HTTP, XML-RPC and Email communications with external servers.
You are welcome to bypass the "social experiment" as you term it. God knows there is no shortage of corporations developing project for other corporations in Second Life.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

reed (19777) | more than 7 years ago | (#16291513)


        * I want to run my own server, I don't feel like paying an increasing monthly fee to just build the world I would like to share with my friends, considering how many "islands" there are, quite a few people are keen to have their own place appart. But if I would like to build something massive, like an insane bookstore that would cost a fortune. ...
        * Closed source -- so its not going anywhere fast


http://interreality.org/ [interreality.org] - come help actually make it.

There are other projects too.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16292269)

I want to run my own server

This is, and will continue to be sticking point for the next 9 to 12 months -- however the opensouce project libsecondlife, is in the process of creating a framework for unit testing client code which includes a server. This can eventually lead to personally owned and operated servers.

I want to write my own scripts, that can take data from other sources and generate objects accordingly

This is already possible with XML-RPC (from outside SL into SL), HTTP (Requests from inside SL to outside), and EMail (Both to and from SL.) These are all accomplished with user written code that is placed by users into in-world objects that they have created.

It is a social experiment in that its has its own currency and trading mechanisms etc, fun, but closed.

Not sure what your refering to by closed, but the economy is open ended in that you can transfer USD to Linden Dollars and back. There hundreds, perhaps thousands, that make extra income via Second Life. There is even a number of people who make a real world living working on just SecondLife land and/or content.

Closed source -- so its not going anywhere fast

http://www.libsecondlife.org/

There is an open source client library, which has grown quite a bit in the last few months and is now receiving some assistance from Linden Labs themselves.

Re:Second Life -- needs to escape its roots (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 7 years ago | (#16292559)

I want to run my own server, I don't feel like paying an increasing monthly fee to just build the world I would like to share with my friends, considering how many "islands" there are, quite a few people are keen to have their own place appart. But if I would like to build something massive, like an insane bookstore that would cost a fortune.

So you're not willing to pay $200 a month for an island, but you are willing to pay the $500 a month for a T1 line to run your own server? You do, of course realize that you couldn't even BEGIN to run a Second Life server with the crappy upload speed of a home broadband connection, don't you?

-Eric

Standards in 3d modelling? (2, Insightful)

syousef (465911) | more than 7 years ago | (#16288745)

When oh when will we have truely open and interoperable standards in 3D modelling. Imagine if every web browser, rather than just redendering differently or supporting a small set of different features that good web designers avoid, worked with completely different markup languages. I know there are tools to convert (though not for all proprietary 3D file formats) but this is ridiculous. I want to get into 3D modelling, but given the time and effort it takes to create a 3D model I'll be damned if I learn how to do it using one tool only to have it fall into obsolescence or have it yanked away the way GMax was.

Re:Standards in 3d modelling? (2, Informative)

TheMoog (8407) | more than 7 years ago | (#16289871)

There's Collada [collada.org] , which is at least a step in the right direction for the industry as a whole.

Re:Standards in 3d modelling? (2, Informative)

fongsaiyuk (35015) | more than 7 years ago | (#16295061)

Not sure if this would be of interest to you, but the person who co-created VRML, Tony Parisi, has gone on to create the X3D spec. and a plugin for your web-browser.

They've got a design studio that can import/export several different formats:
From the site: "Imports and Exports a wide variety of standard 3D file formats using the Accutrans Translator."

You can also programmatically add and control content within the rendered scene, in the web-browser, through AJAX. I was impressed with some of the samples on the site. You are required to install a plugin, but it's pretty painless. I thought it was rather fun to hack a little javascript and make stuff move around in 3d within the browser.

It's also open source: http://www.mediamachines.com/fluxsource/index.html [mediamachines.com]

http://www.mediamachines.com/ [mediamachines.com]
http://www.ajax3d.org/ [ajax3d.org]

Re:Standards in 3d modelling? (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 7 years ago | (#16297529)

To tell you the truth after investing so much effort into learning VRML 1, 2, and 97 and watching those standards die, I'm a little wary of jumping into X3D. Most people seem more interested in making money out of difficult clunky proprietary formats than enabling others with a standard file format.

POV-Ray (1)

kahei (466208) | more than 7 years ago | (#16288891)


As I understand it, Second Life is parametric solids rather than vertices -- much like POV. Is it possible to import POV files (that are mesh-free) into Second Life? It would be great if the existing body of POV objects could be used more widely.

Incidentally 10/10 to SketchUp for what it does.

As a LibSecondLife developer... (1)

mindtriggerz (914619) | more than 7 years ago | (#16290035)

I've heard that this is extremely prim-hoggy, creating up to 36 prims for a single mesh, since SL doesn't support meshes.

Sketchup Tutorials???? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 7 years ago | (#16296215)

The Second Life tie-in doesn't interest me that much, but speaking of Sketch Up ... does anyone have any more detailed tutorials than the ones which come with the software?

I've muddled through it, but when it comes to actually trying to do interior floorplans and the like, it doesn't seem quite so obvious.

Making boxes and the like is one thing, but I haven't yet figured out how to make an interior with walls and objects and the like. Then again, I have no background in this kind of stuff either, so maybe it's not meant to do that.

A primer on how to make actually useful models for houses and the like would be nice if anyone knows of any. I just can't figure out how to go about it.

Cheers

Sweet. (1)

Geminii (954348) | more than 7 years ago | (#16338605)

My next SL home is going to be New York.
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