On Thu, Dec 06, 2001 at 09:02:04AM -0500, Jeffrey Nowakowski wrote:
> Dave Ahn <ahn at vec.wfubmc.edu> wrote:
> >
> > Broadband is here.
> 2000:  9% of online households subscribe to broadband
> 2006: 41%

In terms of sheer numbers, that's 5+ million households as of January 2001
with expectations that it will exceed 7.5M by January 2002.  This doesn't
include the large number of college students and other people who have
high speed access through school or work.

> > While a lot of people do have bad connections (including
> > modem-only), I think that most people who try out netrek for the first
> > time will either already be computer-savvy or be at least network game-savvy.
> I'm not sure how this relates to the discussion at hand.

Because netrek's target audience isn't the typical household with children
under 12.  I can't find the link now, but I recall seeing statistics that
a signifant number of households with broadband access play networked games.
People who are familiar with broadband and networked games will be more
understanding of the concept of lag.  So, listing "bad connections" as
a reason for having a local client is not very relevant, IMO.

> > If their connections are really that bad, then training them for a couple of
> > hours on their local servers won't go very far in retaining them when they
> > get rewled repeatedly the first time they login to a real server.
> But it will give them a chance to get hooked.  When I was stuck on a
> dial-up modem, I had a hard time finding a service that would stay
> connected for hours at a time.  Trying to learn a new game and dealing
> with crap like that just sucks.  Once a newbie has learned the game
> locally, finding an online game that they can play for an hour on
> won't be so bad.

While it may help the newbie learn the basic commands, I don't think it
will get them hooked.  Netrek is addictive because you play against people.

> Also, it'll be easier to write a tutorial on the local client with a
> local server than on a remote server.  Remember how
> newbie.psychosis.net was turned into a tutorial server?  I appreciated
> Karthik's efforts, but I doubt it was very helpful to newbies.

It wasn't a tutorial server, at least not what I am talking about.

> > I don't discount the value of a localized server.
> You just did in your previous message.

Yes, in the context of the time and effort spent in writing a localized
Java server.  If someone is going to spend 50 hours coding, I'd rather
see a better, friendlier client than a localized server.  If not, I'd rather
see the same functionality built on top of existing server rather than
rewritten from the ground up on a different platform.  If not, then

Dave Ahn | ahn at vec.wfubmc.edu | Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center

When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced.  Try to live your life
so that when you die, you will rejoice and the world will cry.  -1/2 jj^2