Archive for April, 2005
Initial announcement of the “PHP Game Development” group
phpGameDev is an idea that sprang to mind in May 2004 when I was starting my crusade to rewrite Quantum Star SE and “do it right this time”. The idea is inherently simple, provide a centralised location where PHP Game Developers can congregate, seek help for their projects, post or read articles, tutorials and news. It’s secondary focus was to support a main “grouping” of developers who showcase their projects. (Some may remember my “there’s no community” rant over on the SE Global Forums.)
Now this is not limited to pure game developers – users too have their flashes of inspiration . Many users after hosting an open source game are likely to modify it (as they’re welcome, nay encouraged to). Those modifications unfortunately have a way of slipping though the cracks into oblivion, never again to see release within the original source code. phpGameDev will be a place where the more enthusiastic users will be free to submit changes, and discuss their own ideas.
So we have: developers and users.
What about players?
phpGameDev will also be the location of the official game servers for Quantum Star SE, Shadows Rising RPG and the Talisman War RTS. I will qualify this by stating that other “official servers” are possible – not to forget programmermatt’s rights to the accolade .
The reason for such a project (for my selfish reasons ) is pretty simple. Brought together those three games (well, two from next Autumn, three from Christmas) will create a powerful community of players and users. All the games are open source (under the Affero GPL), each is widely different, but together they could support a sizeable player community. Add to this each game’s future ability to enable custom Game Modules and plugins, well you get the picture.
Okay, so now we have Developers, Users and Players – all in one location. A potent mix for any development community…
The actual phpGameDev Group as such takes a different tack from the objectives of the website/community…
Members of the group will be PHP Game Developers (the extent of one’s game development in PHP is not necessarily a major perquisite). Each member(s) will be working (or have worked) on a PHP Game (and not necessarily open source). The purpose of the Group is to expose the community to their works-in-progress. Being an open group, which with enough members would have a committee style board of administrators, any PHP Game Developer could join. The site would host their games as part of the Portfolio of showcased games (the main requirement being playability).
To sum up…
phpGameDev will be both a large community of players, users and developers brought together through the centralised hosting of showcased games AND a separate community of PHP Game Developers seeking support or wishing to leverage off the community base, and experience of other members. The site will host games, offer player forums, articles/tutorials/news on PHP Game Developments (NOT restricted purely to the games of the members – News will track all active/reviewed open source PHP Games). An overall aim is to support member Developers to gain some beneficial exposure though game hosting, news coverage and forum discussions. (I won’t forget to add that it will keep the player community happy!). Also to support non-member Developers in their own persuit of creating PHP Games.
phpGameDev is NOT a publicity site for external games (we may list them, but advertising will be maintained on each games own dedicated website (if any)). It is NOT for making me money (my life’s aim is to make NO money from PHP Games!).
At present it’s an idea (with a reserved domain name) . It will start off simple, probably concentrating on hosting Quantum Star SE and Shadows Rising. After that I’ll put the word out for other developers to consider.
Persistence has it’s rewards – one support request and three follow ups later I get the following reply from “burley” of SF.net:
Thank you for supplying us with additional information related to
the project you previously attempted to register. Based on the
additional information you supplied on this support request, the
SourceForge.net support team is now able to approve your project
for hosting on SourceForge.net. You can find information
regarding the services provided and how to use them in the site
docs, available from the link on the SourceForge.net left navbar.
Please let us know if we
may be of further assistance in this matter.
Now to schedule work for the initial development version.
By next Autumn we’ll have a space strategy, rpg and our new RTS style game well in hand!