[MUD-Dev] Star Wars Galaxies: 1 character per server

Marc Fielding fielding at computer.org
Mon Jan 13 22:42:58 New Zealand Daylight Time 2003


[ Caliban Tiresias Darklock ]

> How exactly do you propose that you can have an infinite number of
> characters on a server in practice?

You don't need to. I'll say it again: 

  The maximum theoretical capacity of a shard should be well above
  its functional (playable) capacity.

In every MCS MMOG game I've sampled, the ability to play on EVERY
server was put forth as an *opportunity* for players and not as an
*obligation* on behalf of the developer.

As you've rightly said, you can't have infinite environment for
infinitely many players. Instead, developers build a world for a
predetermined maximum playing capacity and provide a comfortable
infrastructure buffer beyond the minimum requirement.

When player numbers rise on a server, in-game resource conflicts due
to crowding provide a natural limitation to further player
growth. Sony handled this well with regular shard additions that
allowed frustrated gamers to transfer to new or underpopulated
shards. Problem solved.

For many instances of theoretical "impossibility" there exist
engineering workarounds that come "close enough".

-Marc





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