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Putting these things online

Posted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:47 pm
by The0didactus
I just completed a very long round of debugging all my old games, and I also made a completely new game in 24 hours while trapped in the unholy polar vortex.

I am somewhat dismayed to discover that once again I cannot get any of these games to work online. I recall it recently working sporadically, but today at least, it is not possible to play any ADRIFT games online.

Would it be possible to share the load a little bit, or possibly create a new serve to run our games? I'd be happy to volunteer what time and technical expertise I have. It is very important to me that my friends be able to play these games, and being wedded to windows, and scary-looking downloads that register as viruses, makes these games a nonstarter for quite a few people.

Anyone have a solution here?

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:48 pm
by Lumin
Theo mentioned this thread in the Discord, just popping in to say yes I pretty much see smooth and reliable
online playability as THE most important thing that needs to happen if ADRIFT is going to have a future.

Theo's written some pretty incredible games and reaching a much wider audience of people who've never even heard of IF. But he's not going to have much choice but to abandon us for Twine if the hurdles to actually playing them can't be removed.

Just the possibility of games being hosted somewhere with a modern site design where they can be reliably played would immediately reignite my interest in ADRIFT as a platform.

Has anyone been in contact with Campbell lately? He hasn't logged in since November it looks like so I'm thinking the forum isn't the best way to open a dialogue on this.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:35 am
by P/o Prune
Lumin wrote:Has anyone been in contact with Campbell lately? He hasn't logged in since November it looks like so I'm thinking the forum isn't the best way to open a dialogue on this.
I "talked" to him sometime in early January, I think it was,.
I mentioned the problem about playing games on-line and it turns out that he is using his own computer which means that when he turns it off the possibility of playing Adrift games on-line disappears.
I don't know if the solution to this is to donate some money so he can have a webhotel running or something like that (I have no Idea) I just know that I, for one, wouldn't mind chipping in.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 5:43 pm
by The0didactus
P/o Prune wrote:
Lumin wrote:Has anyone been in contact with Campbell lately? He hasn't logged in since November it looks like so I'm thinking the forum isn't the best way to open a dialogue on this.
I "talked" to him sometime in early January, I think it was,.
I mentioned the problem about playing games on-line and it turns out that he is using his own computer which means that when he turns it off the possibility of playing Adrift games on-line disappears.
I don't know if the solution to this is to donate some money so he can have a webhotel running or something like that (I have no Idea) I just know that I, for one, wouldn't mind chipping in.

I would also be willing to chip in, and I'm also willing to look into what the rough cost would be. However, I also want to start exploring setting up my own server. The manual for V. 5 alludes that something like this is possible:
"Please contact me if you wish to host your own version of Web Runner. You will need the following:

A Windows server, running IIS
ASP.NET 4.0 (note, not 2.0 as above)
Ajax extensions
ASP.NET Full Trust security"
Now, I don't meet/undersand two of these parameters, but I'm willing to look into it.

Long story short: I think the whole community would benefit if we had some way to make sure these games are playable before the next IFCOMP rolls around. Online playability clearly affected who chose to play our games, and by extension which new player/designers learned about ADRIFT. I feel like the games we had last year really showcased the power of the system, and next year's probably gonna be even better.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 6:35 pm
by Lumin
Even the recent realization that my online circle includes three, possibly even four people who like to read words and are willing and able to install things on a Windows PC was enough to send my interest in writing IF games again through the roof. Being able to give a reliable link to anyone at all would be HUGE even compared to that. A link, hosted somewhere easily accessible and not painful to the senses? I'd absolutely be willing to pitch in a few bucks for that.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:30 pm
by The0didactus
The difficulty is that most "webspace" that I know how to buy is not going to cut it, for campbell's needs. It will look like a virus, and a traditional web hosting service is almost certainly not going to let something get hosted there. We need someone that knows how the web runner works to even start the buying/donating process.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:56 pm
by Lumin
I'd assume the first step would be talking directly to Campbell, if anyone can explain how to set it up it'd be him.

Po, any chance you could poke him on Facebook again and let him know this thread exists?

Up until now everyone's been so focused on the need for a facelift for the website, but the truth is communities like this centered around one thing aren't really the norm anymore. ADRIFT games can be shared to a much wider audience on personal sites, and simple and straightforward online play is the necessary step to make that happen.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:42 am
by P/o Prune
Lumin wrote:I'd assume the first step would be talking directly to Campbell, if anyone can explain how to set it up it'd be him.

Po, any chance you could poke him on Facebook again and let him know this thread exists?
I will most certainly give it a go. The annoying part is that whenever I ask him if he is losing interest in Adrift, he says absolutely not. Only then nothing happens... But let me see what I can do.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 5:00 pm
by P/o Prune
I have "talked" to Campbell and he replied as follows.
I would like to get it properly set up so the WebRunner is hosted on a proper server. Having it on my own machine does cause problems (i.e. I can't ever turn my PC off). I'll look into it and see what it might cost.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 5:07 pm
by Lumin
That would be a great first step, but I still like the idea of a backup server. Just a handful of selected games and IF comp entries presented in a more attractive way, with seamless online play. It'd be very interesting to see what resulted from that.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:49 pm
by The0didactus
Ultimately, someone beyond Campbell, I believe, needs to learn how to build and host a game server. Otherwise, if the UK gets hit by a meteor it's game over.

I will be slowly learning how to do that over the next few months, but this is still a long way off.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:56 am
by DazaKiwi
I would chip in too, it would be really handy to have your games available and just post the url to friends to play. A few anti-virus software thinks Runner or Developer is infected. I think Campbell said something about that in the past, it was to do with the type of installer and it would need to be updated to something else i think.

So er...would we also need to chip in also for some kind of anti-meteor system to cover the UK in case a meteor does happen by?

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 1:49 pm
by P/o Prune
DazaKiwi wrote:So er...would we also need to chip in also for some kind of anti-meteor system to cover the UK in case a meteor does happen by?
I would say that totally depends where it's aiming at rofl

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 7:27 am
by rotter
Not a lover of online IF myself. But when I enter "Word of the Day" in the IFComp the other year I was amazed at how many people played the game online - you get the stats/play-through as the author. This is a serious problem for V5, it really does help our cause that the server is running on a ZX Spectrum somewhere.

Re: Putting these things online

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2019 12:18 am
by Lumin
rotter wrote:Not a lover of online IF myself. But when I enter "Word of the Day" in the IFComp the other year I was amazed at how many people played the game online - you get the stats/play-through as the author. This is a serious problem for V5, it really does help our cause that the server is running on a ZX Spectrum somewhere.
I'd rather play them offline myself, but then I'd rather play with a full sized screen and keyboard also and yet you'd be amazed at the number of people we could be getting into IF playing who consider mobile everything their native environment and only have a laptop for college. I'm in a good position to show off some ADRIFT games to several new people, people who are used to playing CYOA style games and giving detailed feedback, and Theo has been having some luck with the same crowd. But the most common reactions still range from 'oh, computer? maybe later...', to 'ew I have to download something? ew lol I'm not touching that, site looks like it'll give my laptop AIDS'.