16 August 2007

Play Games With Other People


I've not been a fan of Gamespy's Lobby system (I mentioned this in a post a while back) so I wasn't overly delighted to hear that the next Unreal Tournament is using it. Using it for PC/PS3 cross play is fine but since I'll probably get it on the PC (for UnrealEd and, given my PC spec, the inability to play it) then I can't wait to have a user name produced by randomly mashing a keyboard (though saying that my PS3 tag and XBox 360 tags have resulted in nearly the same pain) and happily knowing that it doesn't link to any other friends list I built up from other games using the GameSpy system.

I haven't tried the PS3 multiplayer system as it stands now. I've seen it identify my contacts are online but I haven't actually tried starting a game with it. I'd be interested to know how well it works. For my PC I looked at Playxpert (which I didn't have any contacts for but seems fine) and Valve's Steam Community (beta) which also seems great then it seems a shame that we can't use one of these. Of course Epic might choose to interact with such APIs so that you can seamlessly go from your desktop straight into a match you've been invited to, it would be great if they did.

Basically I feel that if a bunch of tech heads take half an hour to work out getting over the network, sorting out logins and actually getting to play the game then it doesn't hugely bode well for the growth of a multiplayer community.

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