Sometimes I wish I could communicate with other players faster, when I can obviously see they are online. What do you think, would it destroy the “slow atmosphere” of NP2 if there was an in-game chat window which shows players that are online?
That might put too much strain on the servers, but I wonder if it could do something like spin up an IRC room somewhere else and invite all the players to it through the in-game mail.
Would it really be that CPU intensive to keep track of which players have made a click (e.g.) during the last X minutes/seconds in a separate variable from which to derive the “online” state?
Of course I understand your concerns about the server issue. I’m just afraid that players will not open an external link to an IRC channel most of the time when playing…
I’m not a programmer but wouldn’t it be possible to use an embedded IRC client (open source, customizable)?
I think the technical aspects would not be crazy, but sometimes I just don’t want people to know if I’m online or not.
I don’t like in subterfuge for example that it tells everybody when I was last online.
No, I wouldn’t want that either.
For now, I am satisfied with the in-game email system.
It is not live like IM.
However, I can left click on “Production” at the top of the menu,
and most of the time my browser becomes updated with the most recent game data,
This is my work around.
If Jay wishes to integrate an IM, may I suggest Pidgin
I do not know whether it can be integrated, or how well.
I know there is also Pidgin Portable for Windows on USB memory sticks,
because it is free and open source.
There are version updates from time to time.
I have to fully agree with Jay here. A key part of this game to me is the anonymity, the ability to operate completely behind the scenes. Sometimes I don’t want folks knowing I’ve been online, making moves or reading messages. I work odd shifts and have a very irregular gameplay schedule. I don’t want others players being able to see whether I’ve been on in the night or if I’m sleeping during the day. Or if I’m launching a sneak attack, it could easily be given away if I logged in at an odd time yet did not reply to a message.
It’s OK, but because there aren’t notifications for replies to the same mail thread, if you urgently need to tell an ally something you have to send a new message and hope they are paying attention to their notifications.
Expanding on this idea, wouldn’t it also be a good idea to have some sort of friend system?