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Selective Multiplayer Online

(Redirected from MORPG)

Selective Multiplayer is a system, first introduced with Shroud of the Avatar, that allows one environment for all players and fills the players' instance favoring their friends over strangers (FPO). It also allows Ad-Hoc private instances for story telling (SPO).[1]

Selective Multiplayer Modes

Shroud of the Avatar - First Multiplayer Screenshot

On Shroud of the Avatar there are currently 4 modes listed on the Login Screen.[1][2]

Single Player Offline (Offline)

This is the DRM free, completely off-line version of the game. Your character is stored on your computer and can not be used in any of the online modes.[1]

Single Player Online (SPO)

In the SPO mode you connect to the server, receive content updates, and can see the long term changes others are having on the world. However, you are not visible on anyone else’s screen, nor for grouping, and you don’t see anyone else in the world. You can switch from SPO to FPO or OPO modes whenever you like while in a city or overland map. Some parts of the main storyline quests may temporarily force the player into SPO mode for some parts of the quest.[1]

Friends Only Online (Friends Play Online or FPO)

In friends play online, you only see people you have flagged as friends in the game and only they can see you. Like single player, this is just a server side filter. For those who prefer the quieter game with friends or maybe for those who prefer a more focused role playing experience, this lets you enjoy a more limited online experience. You can switch to SPO or OPO modes whenever you like while in a city or in the overland map.[1]

Multiplayer Online (Open Play Online or OPO)

In OPO players will see everyone that the server thinks they should see. This will not necessarily be all people in the area but should be people you care the most about based on what we believe is their relevance to you. For the most part, OPO will feel like an MMO. Lots of social interaction options with friends and other players. We are trying to distinguish ourselves from traditional MMOs only in that, unlike a normal MMO players are frequently connected directly to each other instead of all data flowing through our servers. We believe this will provide numerous advantages to both players and our service, but does differ from a traditional MMO in that the upper limit of players simultaneously on one map may be restricted.[1] [3]

How it works

  • The game uses a dual scale map meaning everything in the actual game in the zoomed in map is Instanced when you enter it after everyone leaves the instance disappears but the data is synced across to all the other players to maintain the online persistent world. Each player of the game runs their own instance of the game and connects via ad-hoc to other players based on an algorithm which takes into account your settings, play style, who is closed to you, and who it thinks you want to play with.[4] Although most of the game is running locally on the players computer all network packages will go through a main server that forwards them to the individual player clients because of this ip addresses are never exposed to other players.[5]
  • There are several modes that determine who you want to see in the game that you can set at the login screen Single Player Offline, Single Player Online, Friends Only Online, and Multiplayer Online. There is a main server that everyone connects to that maintains the persistent world by syncing and verifying data between players the server also uses your friend graph to choose which players will appear in your instances. So the server handles things like player housing, items trades, and verifying game save data.[4]
  • The majority of the game itself is running on your computer this is why you can run it offline as opposed to being required to be connected to a server to even play at all. There will be differences with the offline version because you are not synced up with the persistent world that other players interact with this is why you're encouraged to play Single Player Online as opposed to Single Player Offline.[4]
  • When you enter an instance if someone you know has an instance for that hex on the map you'll enter their instance of the hex otherwise your game will create an instance and anyone that enters the hex after you will enter your instance of the hex on the map. Because of this there is only one server that runs the persistent world by syncing data across all the players instead of multiple servers running the entire game like most MMORPGs do.[4]

The Persistent World

Everything that happens in New Britannia will be synced across player clients (unless you're in Single Player Offline Mode) this data will be authenticated by a main server and includes but is not limited to things such as Housing, Trading, Shops, and Player Venders. Your game save data and the environment around you in each instance will be synced through a main server to all the players to maintain a living world around them. For example if you have a house with a vendor even though you may be in a separate instance as someone else they can still see your vendor and make a purchase.

Shroud of the Avatar Friend Graph

Based on what the developers have said there are resources that may be used to form your Friend Graph:

  • Neither Facebook or Twitter will be supported because of API restrictions on both services.[6].

External links

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Shroud of the Avatar - Selective-Multi-Player Means Multiple Ways to Play! http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/portalarium/shroud-of-the-avatar-forsaken-virtues-0/posts/429763
  2. Screen Shot: media:Build44 Login Screen.png
  3. Screen Shot: media:Build66Login.jpg
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Warren Schultz interviews Richard Garriott, http://gameindustry.about.com/b/2013/11/30/shroud-of-the-avatar-selective-multiplayer.htm
  5. Hangout of the Avatar ~ 1.30.14 ~ SotA Multiplayer, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGowcsskbjk
  6. Lum, media:LumConversation12-18-13.png

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