[ubuntu-uk] Ubuntu Community Gaming Server
alan at popey.com
Thu Nov 8 22:06:06 GMT 2007
I've recently been chatting with someone who is enthusiastic about an
Ubuntu Community Gaming Server, and wanted to run it past you lot to get
The idea is that a physical server would be provided which would run
servers for a number of popular games. The game servers would be run in
rotation on a schedule, and not all the time. The reasons for this are
social and technical.
If all games run all the time there is less incentive for people to meet
up at a particular time/day to play. This has been shown with the
LUGRadio guys having their game server up on two nights a week. Having a
game server up only on specific days means people are more likely to set
time aside to play, and also more likely to set aside time to play with
the same people. Rotating the day however gives people the opportunity
to play with different people (whoever is available on that day).
One of the problems with having a particular game up on a specific night
is that people often have other things they need to do in "the big blue
room", "meatspace" or "real life", and these occur often on a particular
So one way around this is to rotate the games so that they don't always
come up on the same day each week. For example in the first week the
game Enemy Territory might come up on a Monday, but on the second week
it would be on a Thursday.
This (I believe) would mean that people would potentially try new games
"I'm only available on Wednesday night, so will play whatever is
available that day", but also allows for the "meatspace" problem
outlined above "I'd like to play game 'foo' but I can't do Wednesdays".
On the subject of games, there is an argument that the server should run
only Free (as in speech) games, and this I can understand. However it
would probably be the case that the gaming server would run a
combination of Free and non-Free games.
It also makes sense that people should be able to play games that are in
the repository - as well as those that are installable from external 3rd
party download sites. Experience tells us that gamers are not averse to
installing software from 3rd party vendors (whether free of cost or not)
and so it probably doesn't make sense for us to prescribe that people
should _only_ be able to play games that are in the repository. However
we need to cater for both groups (in my opinion).
The following games have been considered for inclusion as they have free
server software (an important criteria for the gaming server is to not
have to pay out for each game):-
Tremulous, Warsow, Nexuiz, Open Arena, Alien Arena, Enemy Territory.
In addition there are some more conventional (non first-person shooter)
and less resource intensive games that could be included such as:-
Bzflag, Atlantik, Armagetron.
Yes, there are already servers for all these games available online.
However this would be an Ubuntu community effort. A way to bring gamers
into the Ubuntu community, and to bring Ubuntu community members to
Of course there's also the "You can put a bullet through popeys head on
Wednesday" which might attract a few people too. :)
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