I drop by once in a while as well.
Originally Posted by David E. Cohen
Spending most my time programming a diplomacy AI over at DAIDE. You both should give the AI a try sometime. Currently working on code for when my AI makes/breaks alliances. Interesting stuff.
i want more maps ... we need more maps... more better ones.... well of course first make your progress then please make more maps... and i think you have made enough games... even Command&Conquer doesn't have that many of them... well of course if you make good buisness with creating of new games... then keep on creating but if you don't then just stop... it will not help... i don't think people need that many games...well unless as i said it makes a good progress for you...
Project “Diplomacy: Player's Edition” – pitch to Game Developer “X”
Ok just to summarise what I am suggesting for a Diplomacy game that would be what the gaming community could really USE - AND might have a chance in the marketplace (i.e. this is a PITCH to SOME software developer, Hasbro/Paradox or someone who might buy the rights off them) + incorporating the good ideas that have bounced back on this thread.
Many thanks to Stretch 33 (AI competition) and Val Kulatov (more maps) and to David E. Cohen for their contributions.
Below are ideas free for the taking… All I (and I am sure the many thousands of other Diplomacy lovers) ask is that the great game of Diplomacy be understood and respected.:
Project Title: “Diplomacy – Player's Edition”
– the Diplomacy computer engine that COULD!
1. GRAPHICS: Highly elegant, (Edwardian era perhaps, c 1900s): a) BUT nothing that would be too expensive to code & debug; b) In all my years playing Diplomacy I never saw anyone who needed to squint at the board from alternative angles – so 2D TOP DOWN graphics are fine.
The one other requirement is the ability to rotate the map. However if that makes any of the following modules too complex then it could be considered optional.
This simplicity is also essential so that a user map editor can easily be added AND so the engine can be run on as many platforms as possible: from PCs to mobile phones. (Marketing hook?)
Fleets marked by a simple ship shape PLEASE (?)
2: MUSIC & SOUND: In line with the Edwardian theme.
Music: national anthems of the period.
Sound: Mostly to keep novice players happy. Announcements of moves & major events could be done with the appropriate national accents. THAT would be a snap to program – it would just be a matter of rounding up the speakers. Heck if they can do it in Worms, why not Diplomacy?
Alternatively or as well: “Conflict” and “Paper Ruffling/Tearing” (agreement/disagreement) sounds could accompany the appropriate events.
However the music and sounds MUST be User Definable, simply by giving each file a clearly recognisable name in wav or mp3 format.
3: MAP EDITOR: The call for “more maps” could be filled by including a map editor. Keeping the graphics to “top down” ought to make this a simple programming task.
People ought to be able to make a “Europe 14th Century” Diplomacy as well as an “Ancient World” Diplomacy. They could conceivably be of the same scale as a 1901 Diplomacy map.
The scope for larger maps (say a “Whole world Diplomacy 2006”) would depend on the scope built into the central game engine. IF the simplicity of the central “Diplomacy” game concept is adhered to this would only be a matter of making the arrays scaleable (?)
4: ENGINE CODING: Having this as solid and bug free as possible would be crucial. Keeping the whole project unbloated by 3D isometric type graphics would free project time & resources in this direction. The engine needs to take the input of the twice yearly orders (whether from human or AIs), compute the results & displaying them on the 2D map are what is needed and also displaying results in a map based, graphic and tabular format as well – heck that can be done in Excel.
The “mouse click” language of diplomatic suggestions and cross national support also needs to be handled. Paradox has made a real contribution to Diplomacy game development right there.
Just when there ARE more than one human player they need to have direct communication as well....
5: MULTI-PLATFORM TARGETING: I wonder how many platforms this game could be played on – if the coding is kept tight and the graphics 2D? I was thinking PC to mobile phone.
6: MULTIPLAYER: Where most game engines fall down (if they don’t have a graphic related bug) has always been in the multiplayer module. Well this HAS to be done right in “Diplomacy Player's Edition.” As mentioned several times before – moving emphasis from graphics to the gaming engine code development hopefully would help this.
7: AI Coding: On reflection a for-profit games company would most likely need to include some level of AI with the entry level disk of “Diplomacy Player's Edition.” The marketing boys would scream down the house at the idea of a game that EVERY potential buyer couldn’t take home and play IMMEDIATELY. Luckily there are several already developed AIs that work (if not all that perfectly) that could fit this bill.
HOWEVER: The AI side MUST be an open sourced module. The specs for THIS MODULE need to be published (in print but most especially on-line) so independent software developers can develop their own AIs. The idea of making this a worldwide competition is brilliant and is eminently do-able.
Software companies would do well to take the example of closed vs open hardware architecture in their software products. Having one or two MODULES open (not the central ENGINE, that remains their copyright) and accessible to the many geniuses out there would keep their product alive and selling long beyond the usual cut off date.
Building links with the large on-line and even on-board Diplomacy clubs around the world would also be a smart marketing move.
8: TRANS GENERATIONAL LONGEVITY: Any software developer that takes this on needs to realise that they are handling a game with a genius of simple-complexity something of the order of CHESS. This is going to go on into the future, regardless of platforms they write for coming and going.
They ought to realise that this is an ongoing sales opportunity AS LONG AS they don’t stray from respecting the simplicity of the basic game rules and stray back into bloated “sequels” that is so often the fate of other great computer games (the much lamented Populous II – III cliff edge to oblivion).
All software companies seem to come and go over the decades in buy outs and mergers. So care of the “Diplomacy Player's Edition” central Website would need to be moved to the on-line Diplomacy community before this occurs.
9: LEGAL: Paradox has made it’s “We’re OUT” position quite clear in the statement that began this discussion and we need to respect their decision. Also there is much speculation about contractual tangles in the Hasbro-Paradox- Atari ownership of Diplomacy.
Whatever the case, and this is probably yet another cry in the wilderness, could they PLEASE sell Diplomacy to a company that understands the Chess like SIMPLE/COMPLEX nature of the Diplomacy game?
Well that’s it.
A: “I have dream!”
B: “What is your dream?”
C: “To have a dream!!!”
Last edited by Gordon Bennett; 23-08-2006 at 05:05.