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serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official client

PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:26 pm
by o11c
Recent discussions have made it quite clear that the people working on Mana - currently our official client - do not care at all about support for the tmwa server. Instead, they care about their eternally "almost done" ManaServ.

On the other hand, 4144's ManaPlus client is dedicated to continuing to support tmwa - both ours and his evol fork (it would be nice to see them merge again, but I don't think it would be easy).

As an ancillary advantage, ManaPlus has a faster release schedule. Other than the obvious, this *also* makes it possible to change the server protocol, which is essential for the development of new features.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:35 pm
by Reid
o11c wrote:Recent discussions have made it quite clear that the people working on Mana - currently our official client - do not care at all about support for the tmwa server. Instead, they care about their eternally "almost done" ManaServ.

On the other hand, 4144's ManaPlus client is dedicated to continuing to support tmwa - both ours and his evol fork (it would be nice to see them merge again, but I don't think it would be easy).

As an ancillary advantage, ManaPlus has a faster release schedule. Other than the obvious, this *also* makes it possible to change the server protocol, which is essential for the development of new features.

I don't hide my opinion on this topic, and after the recent conversation in #mana channel, I don't see any reason which stop to choose ManaPlus as official client.
The player community is already used with this client and 4144 is involved in adding new support for tmw. And even more, you can find ManaPlus's package available on most Linux's distribution and soon in mac and android. ^^

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:57 pm
by Nard
I support this proposition.
Manaplus is the de facto TMW client. Realism has to speak.

o11c wrote:Recent discussions have made it quite clear that the people working on Mana - currently our official client - do not care at all about support for the tmwa server. Instead, they care about their eternally "almost done" ManaServ.

I do not agree with this some active manasource developers (Ablu is the best example, and he is not the only one) do care about TMW and it's players. Maybe they don't speak enough on this forum at the moment.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:21 am
by Frost
What is meant by "official client?"

In the real world, a support matrix is built using parts/software and revisions/versions. The support matrix is used (among other times) during design and testing.
Does this proposal intend that, when testing server changes, we don't consider serious problems found with the manasource client to be "blocking bugs?"

Also, what versions of the ManaPlus client would be supported? (I suggest a defined time, such as "most recent version on a platform, plus any version released in previous 6 months, with exceptions considered when necessary.")

Which players (if any) might have difficulty changing from the manasource client to ManaPlus? What support would The Mana World project provide to make this change?

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 3:06 am
by o11c
Frost wrote:Does this proposal intend that, when testing server changes, we don't consider serious problems found with the manasource client to be "blocking bugs?"

Eventually, yes. But in the short term, it just means the manasource client might not behave in the manner players would prefer.

Frost wrote:Also, what versions of the ManaPlus client would be supported? (I suggest a defined time, such as "most recent version on a platform, plus any version released in previous 6 months, with exceptions considered when necessary.")

I would suggest tiers of support:

  • last 6 months - will not crash or behave very erratically
  • last 2 or 3 months - will mostly do what players expect, but might not support all features
  • last 2 releases - will do everything, correctly, on the main server
  • last release (or sometimes even git) - may be required for "everything" on the test server

Frost wrote:Which players (if any) might have difficulty changing from the manasource client to ManaPlus?

In theory, anyone running *BSD. In practice, this is not a problem.

A more significant issue is Mac OS X, which a small number of people use. There is this thread working on this issue right now.

Note that we already have trouble supporting this platform - it has been 4 months since I suggested dropping support for it due to having old packages, and in that time nothing has changed.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 5:29 am
by 0x0BAL
You should at least add a link to manaplus's website. So new players would try it and stick with the best one.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 8:29 am
by Jenalya
Since there currently isn't an active developer in the mana team who's interested in developing towards tmwAthena, and it doesn't look as if there's going to be someone, I suppose this step isn't avoidably.
We already started supporting manaplus content-wise, by adding some tags to xml files which are used by manaplus, but not by mana, and when testing some content before release, usually both mana and manaplus were checked.

Regarding dropping support for mana (as in introducing new features which might not work or be incompatible with mana) I suggest to give some reasonable amount time for players that use mana to switch to manaplus. To announce the change, the downloads website needs to mention manaplus first, and we should adapt the news.php (which currently displays "The latest client version is: 0.6.1") and add an entry to news.txt.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 9:29 am
by Matt
I never used the ManaPlus client, but judging from the screenshots 1] it is intended for hardcore tmw players.

What are all this abbreviation for? Does someone really need 6 decimal places?

P, Nav, Da0R DAl 1g N DGO BC ONL KS STA EQU INV SKI SOC SH SP DR SET WTF

Don't get me wrong, I guess MP is a really good client for people who already spent much time with TMW, but I also think this client is too confusing or difficult for new players, which may result in scaring them away.

1] http://manaplus.evolonline.org/screenshots

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 10:24 am
by Reid
Matt wrote:I never used the ManaPlus client, but judging from the screenshots 1] it is intended for hardcore tmw players.

What are all this abbreviation for? Does someone really need 6 decimal places?

P, Nav, Da0R DAl 1g N DGO BC ONL KS STA EQU INV SKI SOC SH SP DR SET WTF

Don't get me wrong, I guess MP is a really good client for people who already spent much time with TMW, but I also think this client is too confusing or difficult for new players, which may result in scaring them away.

1] http://manaplus.evolonline.org/screenshots

I've updated this page, I think that the new screenshots are much representative of the work of 4144.

These abbreviation won't stay here for a long time, it's meant to be replaced by icons soon.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 10:32 am
by Nard
Matt wrote:I never used the ManaPlus client, but judging from the screenshots 1] it is intended for hardcore tmw players.

For sure, mana client, has "a few" lacks especially when you plan to play a mage. Isn't mana client supposed also bring and keep in game such players? and to a manaserv based game too?
What are all this abbreviation for? Does someone really need 6 decimal places?

P, Nav, Da0R DAl 1g N DGO BC ONL KS STA EQU INV SKI SOC SH SP DR SET WTF

may be you could check:
http://manaplus.evolonline.org/documentation
WTF is not in the possible list of manaplus buttons, you may have ben confused with some other game.

Don't get me wrong, I guess MP is a really good client for people who already spent much time with TMW, but I also think this client is too confusing or difficult for new players, which may result in scaring them away.

1] http://manaplus.evolonline.org/screenshots[

If you played a bit and helped new players you could know that new players learn very fast how to use manaplus' main features (no longer than mana in fact). The reason is because the manaplus features are made by a player (or by someone who stays close to players). Knowing it in depth can take a longer time but it it is no more difficult than to learn the game mechanics, and the tricks that make the game playable and fun.
You should try playing a bit while using manaplus, you would soon see hpw it would be difficult to you to get back to mana, as it is for me when I test it.


o11c wrote:A more significant issue is Mac OS X, which a small number of people use. There is this thread working on this issue right now.

Note that we already have trouble supporting this platform - it has been 4 months since I suggested dropping support for it due to having old packages, and in that time nothing has changed.

This is due to the fact that most developers have no interest on the mac platform for reasons that have nothing to do with programming skills. Uptodate libraries exist and are usable. Mac is a freeBSD platform, with a large opensource area; which can run a lot of X applications. Even if I don't like that much the actual Apple policy regarding iphone, this company has brought (and still does) to the front scene enough outstanding technologies to be a must in a computer science engineer's culture.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 11:10 am
by Crush
While many of the established players use ManaPlus, you also have to think about the new players. The ManaPlus client has a lot of features which are very confusing to new users (like that cryptic bar with letters and numbers on the top of the screen). Before you make ManaPlus the official client, you should consider to design these features in a more intuitive way or to hide them by default with a way to activate them via the options menu.

For software which is really user-friendly, a wiki page like http://manaplus.evolonline.org/documentation shouldn't have to exist. The moment when a user has to consult the documentation is the moment when the user interface developer has failed.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 11:37 am
by Nard
Crush wrote:like that cryptic bar with letters and numbers on the top of the screen). Before you make ManaPlus the official client, you should consider to design these features in a more intuitive way or to hide them by default with a way to activate them via the options menu.
[...] a user has to consult the documentation is the moment when the user interface developer has failed.

:D
These cryptic letters are before-0.5-mana legacy. The author seems to be conscious of that unfriendly display as he introduced a mouse-over contextual help, so that even before they are replaced with icons, you can have in your own language the meaning of them (this contextual help also applies to other features. There IS an option to hide them or display them by default in setup menu ( which begins to be rather crowdy btw).
I am among those who like to read the "fucking manual" thus I think the wiki has to exist; but as longtime mac user and "apple guidelines" supporter I do agree with you.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 11:35 pm
by hal9000
Crush wrote:While many of the established players use ManaPlus, you also have to think about the new players. The ManaPlus client has a lot of features which are very confusing to new users (like that cryptic bar with letters and numbers on the top of the screen). Before you make ManaPlus the official client, you should consider to design these features in a more intuitive way or to hide them by default with a way to activate them via the options menu.

For software which is really user-friendly, a wiki page like http://manaplus.evolonline.org/documentation shouldn't have to exist. The moment when a user has to consult the documentation is the moment when the user interface developer has failed.


Hi,

together with the new Jewelry Theme I'm developing, 4144 and I , we are going to simplify interface of ManaPlus switching from an hardcore GUI to a more elegant and simple interface.

Just stay tuned ;)

BTW..wow long time I do not enter this forum..last time I had 5 swords below my name :)

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 1:25 am
by _Speiros_
Matt wrote:I never used the ManaPlus client, but judging from the screenshots 1] it is intended for hardcore tmw players.

What are all this abbreviation for? Does someone really need 6 decimal places?

. . . WTF . . .



1] http://manaplus.evolonline.org/screenshots


Matt, I believe the above abbreviation stands for Waiting To Fight. I don't have that button on my manaplus, but I believe I could do with a WTF command at times.

Re: serious proposal to make ManaPlus the only official clie

PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 9:06 am
by Matt
Well, I read the documentation, I know what the abbreviations stand for, I was just speaking from the standpoint of new users.

The WTF was a pun, it stands for what it usually stands for.

If you still have questions, just see Crushs posts, we seem to have the same opinion ;)