Middleware Announced!


Pathfinder Online

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CEO, Goblinworks

It's Unity!

Scarab Sages Goblinworks Executive Founder

Awesome, from a fellow Unity developer got to say good choice!!

Goblin Squad Member

I've done some simple stuff in Unity.

Does GW foresee allowing fan made content and add ons? I could so be into that. It'd be really easy, especially since Unity is open source.

Dark Archive Goblin Squad Member

Will Unity allow for API to have API coders / builders make API tools for the game?

Scarab Sages Goblinworks Executive Founder

@Vendis I wouldn't call Unity Open source it is more free to try (ie to get all the features you have to pay for the license)

@Psyblade It will depend on whether they let us link it or not. I hope so, but as Vendis mentioned with it being free to use (for the basic tools) it would be a great way for community contribution.


Cool! Was just talking about middleware in a thread earlier today. :)

Looks pretty decent from the videos. Anybody know what it's projections are for large scale battles like max number of users in an area?

Going with Photon servers?

Goblin Squad Member

have you decided on any AI integration with Unity ?

Goblin Squad Member

Unity really is a neat choice with a lot of potential. But it will only take one so far.
How are you planning on handling net framework and server back-end? Will you be revealing another middleware for that or will you go down the "roll your own" path?

Goblin Squad Member

This is good for those linux folks as unity 4.0 has native linux support.

Also the thing i love most about this is that it can be possible to source the players.

For example - Run a contest to design a set of evil plate and leather armor. Top winner gets 3 training months, second gets 2 training months, third get 1 training month.

design 5 undead skeletons...etc.

Since unity is something that can be gotten (in part) for free, people can try their hands on it. Those who are serious can buy the full version without costing them too much (still expensive at 1500 or so but not out of reach if someone really wants it).

I see this as a good way to crowd source from the player base. More so since the dev team is so small, perhaps this can be a good way to source some art from the fans.

Scarab Sages Goblinworks Executive Founder

If not homebrew I would guess Photon.

Goblin Squad Member

leperkhaun wrote:

Since unity is something that can be gotten (in part) for free, people can try their hands on it. Those who are serious can buy the full version without costing them too much (still expensive at 1500 or so but not out of reach if someone really wants it).

You're right there leperkhaun: I've got Unity (for mobile) but it's a bit beyond me, beyond mere tinkering. :)

@Valandur: That's the sort of big question I hope GW can start talking about... for one, along with further reveals!

Goblin Squad Member

i dont know if we will hear about it soon, but i guess they have a good idea, their server guy seems to be very intelligent and knows what he is doing. What i am hopeful about is that having one server everyone plays on was something they wanted straight from the start, so its something that they have been planning for, its not just a last minute decision they have to try to cram in.

Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I think they have always envisioned Pathfinder Online to be as per EVE Online, a single-server: The whole story is shared by the community and not partitioning your player base (thereby increasing social barriers). Ryan and Mark are both former CCP (check: is WoD single-server?). Tbh, for me, when I first began with mmorpgs I think multiple shards was the biggest disappointment I realised about the genre.

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

Couldn't resist the out of context Chappelle Show reference....Rick James' ring imprint on Charlie Murphy's forehead.

Goblin Squad Member

I am intrigued, and interested in the developing story.

Goblin Squad Member

Oki! The middleware is Unity4. Which happens to be cross platform 3D engine supporting MacOS, Android, Windows, Linux, PS3, Xbox, WiiU, and even has a browser app for Firefox, Crome, Safari and Internet Explorer.

Now the question is, will there be a Linux client? I got about $300 waiting to get pledge if there is a Linux client. Currently WINE does not support DirectX 11, which Unity4 uses.


leperkhaun wrote:
i dont know if we will hear about it soon, but i guess they have a good idea, their server guy seems to be very intelligent and knows what he is doing. What i am hopeful about is that having one server everyone plays on was something they wanted straight from the start, so its something that they have been planning for, its not just a last minute decision they have to try to cram in.

one server was the plan from day one i believe.


DarkOne the Drow wrote:

Oki! The middleware is Unity4. Which happens to be cross platform 3D engine supporting MacOS, Android, Windows, Linux, PS3, Xbox, WiiU, and even has a browser app for Firefox, Crome, Safari and Internet Explorer.

Now the question is, will there be a Linux client? I got about $300 waiting to get pledge if there is a Linux client. Currently WINE does not support DirectX 11, which Unity4 uses.

GW has an engine that supports it now is a definite time for them to say yay or nay to Linux and if they don't make a Linux client then shame on them. I think it will be more of a question of "WHEN" they will have the Linux client not if.

Goblin Squad Member

Dakcenturi wrote:
@Vendis I wouldn't call Unity Open source it is more free to try (ie to get all the features you have to pay for the license.

I misspoke, both here and on the Kickstarter's comment page. I know it isn't open source, I have no idea why I wrote that. Probably the excitement in it being done in an engine I'm familiar with and the possibilities that might include.

Goblin Squad Member

Excellent!

Goblin Squad Member

DarkOne the Drow wrote:

Oki! The middleware is Unity4. Which happens to be cross platform 3D engine supporting MacOS, Android, Windows, Linux, PS3, Xbox, WiiU, and even has a browser app for Firefox, Crome, Safari and Internet Explorer.

Now the question is, will there be a Linux client? I got about $300 waiting to get pledge if there is a Linux client. Currently WINE does not support DirectX 11, which Unity4 uses.

It does sound like there is hope for a Linux version. I seriously doubt there is only going to be DirectX 11 support anyways. To me, not having options for DirectX 9 or DirectX 10 is an awful idea as many people still use older video cards (or are on Windows XP, but that seems to be dropping, and Microsoft doesn't really support XP anymore.) Likewise for OpenGL.

I'm hoping that the game scales well from computers around 2005-ish to high-end gaming computers.

*I actually am running a computer capable of DirectX 11. It'd be nice to use that in what I hope to be a replacement to my old favorite MMO. If it takes longer, I can wait.

Goblin Squad Member

Knew it! Thought I recognized what was on one of the Dev's monitors in that first video for the kickstarter.

Goblin Squad Member

Ryan, can you make any official statement about Mac and/or Linux support (now or longer term) ?

Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Mac and Linux support would draw a fairly significant market share, and should benefit the popuation of Linux users since having an entertainment option would promote its use among those weary of Microsoft OS.

Scarab Sages Goblinworks Executive Founder

I'm guessing that Mac/Linux will be added Stretch goals after the initial $1Mill.

Goblin Squad Member

Dakcenturi wrote:
I'm guessing that Mac/Linux will be added Stretch goals after the initial $1Mill.

Dak you are a Unity dev: I saw on their website that the engine has not been tested server side. Much of what Unity does wouldn't be appropriate on a server anyway.

What would the archetecture look like serverside, and what options are there to dish out data to MMO-scale Unity-based clients?

Scarab Sages Goblinworks Executive Founder

Like I said above, if they don't homebrew, the most popular server architecture for Unity is Photon.

I've only briefly looked at the server side stuff as the project I'm working on now is single-player mobile. However, next month I'll be starting on a simple multi-player game to emulate a board game for my company.

Goblinworks Executive Founder

DarkOne the Drow wrote:

Oki! The middleware is Unity4. Which happens to be cross platform 3D engine supporting MacOS, Android, Windows, Linux, PS3, Xbox, WiiU, and even has a browser app for Firefox, Crome, Safari and Internet Explorer.

Now the question is, will there be a Linux client? I got about $300 waiting to get pledge if there is a Linux client. Currently WINE does not support DirectX 11, which Unity4 uses.

If you had to estimate the chances of WINE supporting DX11 by the time PFO is released, What odds would you need to bet for or against it?

Goblin Squad Member

I imagine most of the middleware out there caters less to a single shard with a lot of clusters style architecture. So a reasonable guesstimate would be that homebrew is the best option.

Goblin Squad Member

Unity has a fairly simple networking utility build into it that enables the developer to quickly create applications that work with, say, up to 64 players - a fairly powerful but not very scalable.

Unity isn't design for MMOs itself but it is easily extendable and as Dakcenturi mentioned, Photon is a very nice platform and they even offer on-site solutions so the developer isn't dependable on their cloud infrastructure (which they also offer).

I would guess that they come up with some sort of overlay interface, which they use to hide the underlaying back-end, so they can easily migrate to another solution. With that, they can first use a service like Photon for quick yet very powerful prototyping while developing their own back-end in parallel with the game.

Just a guess tho.

Goblin Squad Member

For WINE DX9 is almost fully supported. DX10 is partial. Seeing that DX is proprietary software of Microsoft, and Microsoft offers very little help with porting it to other systems, thus support for DX is a very slow process. So if PFO uses DX11, then under WINE I doubt it will be functional in 5 years time. OpenGL is supported fully on Linux.

I have OpenGL based GPUs. What the Unity4 client for Linux would do, it to have a Linux DX library that would translated DX to OpenGL, then send the OpenGL to the GPUs.

So it really depends on which version of DX they want to use, and in turn determines if WINE can be used, else requires a proper Linux client.

Goblin Squad Member

Introducing another API layer between the application and the hardware leads to horrible performance issues. :(

Goblin Squad Member

Unity chooses its renderer (directx, opengl, ect) depending on the target platform. To my understanding, unity has it's own sub-grammar for graphics programming that is a derivative of opengl.
So, if Goblinworks decides to ignore (or double-program) platform specifics, it shouldn't introduce that much of an overhead to implement the game on PC, Mac and Linux.

I for one would be willing to sacrifice some invisible post-processing tech that is directx exclusive, in favor of multiplatform support.

Goblin Squad Member

I googled Unity 2012 reviews and the top returns were about the Jackson 5 Unity tour.

Once I found reviews they were not very good but then I noticed they were a couple years old. I'll have to defer to your opinions in this thread. All Greek to me.

Goblin Squad Member

@Rafkin - here's their media coverage site to get some impressions:

Unity3D - Media Coverage

Goblin Squad Member

AvenaOats wrote:

@Rafkin - here's their media coverage site to get some impressions:

Unity3D - Media Coverage

Some nice demos in there. Thanks.

Time for a new tech demo asap.

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

I'd rather they didn't spend time making a tech demo for no reason. I'd prefer they focus on making the game until it's time to make a playable demo for conventions.

Goblinworks Executive Founder

@Drakhan the Tech Demo has come and gone, it has served its purpose (get enough external investors interested to make Pathfinder Online a reality). This Kickstarter is for the next step: get US$ 1 million to accelerate the development, so we'll have the first group of "early start" players entering the game in June 2014, instead of (say) June 2015 or later.

Unity is no demo tool, it can make proper games (if you build the right assets, i.e. graphics, models, music, animations, game rules, etc.). If Goblinworks builds this game like I'm imagining them doing, they will have a playable (but very unfinished) game as soon as possible, and keep refining that and building on top of that until it's ready for launch.

CTO, Goblinworks

Hey guys!

I hope you are as excited about using Unity as I am. I'm sorry the post yesterday didn't have too many details in it - we just finished negotiating for weeks in order to get Unity, and we just put a very quick post up because we were excited about it.

We're planning to do a more detailed video or text update about the engine choice today or tomorrow. Yes, Unity will definitely require more work on the server in order to support a single-world MMO. But we've factored that into our schedule, and I've done that work before.

We'll keep updating everyone with more aspects of the engine choices over the next couple of days.

Goblin Squad Member

Thanks Mark, good to hear you have done that "server work" before - single-server is big draw for me.

Wasteland 2: Unity Update is interesting:

Why Unity: Wasteland 2?

Goblin Squad Member

Dakcenturi wrote:
I'm guessing that Mac/Linux will be added Stretch goals after the initial $1Mill.

Make it a non-stretch-goal, "let's get everyone playing" type of guaranteed thing (put it in writing) and I will drop $500 US on the project right now. That's above what I've already contributed, mind.

Just sayin'.

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

Gilthy wrote:

@Drakhan the Tech Demo has come and gone, it has served its purpose (get enough external investors interested to make Pathfinder Online a reality). This Kickstarter is for the next step: get US$ 1 million to accelerate the development, so we'll have the first group of "early start" players entering the game in June 2014, instead of (say) June 2015 or later.

Unity is no demo tool, it can make proper games (if you build the right assets, i.e. graphics, models, music, animations, game rules, etc.). If Goblinworks builds this game like I'm imagining them doing, they will have a playable (but very unfinished) game as soon as possible, and keep refining that and building on top of that until it's ready for launch.

I completely agree. I was responding to Rafkin immediately above me. I'm just saying they shouldn't worry about making a product super polished to the level people want to see until they need to.

Goblin Squad Member

I believe the Linux community could really stand some love too, plus they are by and large the very folk who might be among the most interested in Pathfinder Online.

CTO, Goblinworks

Stay tuned

Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.

</em Carefully taps the warming vacuum tubes, assures himself the dial is set, then settles into his chair watching the radio intently as it emits white noise.>

Goblin Squad Member

Being wrote:
I believe the Linux community could really stand some love too, plus they are by and large the very folk who might be among the most interested in Pathfinder Online.

Based on what, exactly?

I wouldn't be surprised by Mac/Linux stretch goals, but I think Mac would come before Linux, if they're not the same goal.

Goblin Squad Member

Being wrote:
</em Carefully taps the warming vacuum tubes, assures himself the dial is set, then settles into his chair watching the radio intently as it emits white noise.>

Hay, I still have my tube manual!

Goblin Squad Member

Was the tech demo made using Unity?

Goblin Squad Member

This has made me very very happy, I can now dream of the day I will eliminate my bootcamp.

Goblin Squad Member

Unity3d wrote:
This pleases me. Now feed me assets!

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