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#1 DaJuiceGOAT  Icon User is offline

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Text-Based-Game / Database software clarification & advice.

Posted 05 December 2009 - 11:40 AM

Hey guys, i recently felt that i had become proficient enough in both HTML/X, Javascript and CSS to begin creating, or at least attempting to create my own website, specifically a text-based RPG. If you're familiar with the numerous Mafia text based RPG's all over the web you'll be familiar with what i'm attempting to create and hopefully the processes involved. I'm aware that PHP and mysql are needed to create such games, i'm currently learning them both (very slowly) as i go along creating the site, but my understanding of them is very limited for the moment. Now before my thread is dismissed, i realise there is a sticky on developing "text-based mafia games" and i have took the time to read through it, i feel my question is more specific and centred around the use of software in the development process rather than anything else.

First let me say iím developing this site purely for fun and learning in my spare time, I do not want to be purchasing expensive software or hardware whilst much of what Iím doing remains an uncertainty.

What i basically want is to be able to test, tinker and run the (game/site) from home in a browser, no servers or internet involved.

Q) After reading around about languages, apps and software that people have used for similar projects the sheer amount and variation in recommendations has me a little overwhelmed. Hopefully youíll be able to provide some clarification and offer a definitive set of programs/software/languages i should be using. I'm specifically intrested in what i'll need to create user accounts, loginís, storage, access and change of player character stats, etc. So, database stuff. :blink:

Hereís what I have and plan to use right now.

Iím writing my pages in text, pure html, no software (Dreamweaver, etc) and donít plan to in the future. (Same for CSS)

I have SQL server set up to provide me with a local server on my computer simply to test everything Iím going to be doing.

Now, itís with the database side of things that has me all confused. :blink: Especially MySQL, there seems to be multiple downloads of various apps and software available all doing very different things.

This post has been edited by DaJuiceGOAT: 05 December 2009 - 11:43 AM


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Replies To: Text-Based-Game / Database software clarification & advice.

#2 Martyr2  Icon User is offline

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Re: Text-Based-Game / Database software clarification & advice.

Posted 05 December 2009 - 04:02 PM

Hi DaJuice,

You are off to a good start but I wanted to clarify a few things with you. SQL Server is your database software. It is not the web server software you need to actually show your web pages on your local machine. If you are using windows what you want to be doing is enabling what is called "Internet Information Services" or IIS for short or if you are going to do PHP you can use a web server software product called Apache.

For IIS, You should be able to install this by simply going to Start >> Control Panel >> Add and Remove Programs >> Windows components and checking IIS from the list of services. This is your web server service that will allow you to serve pages for your testing. This will allow you actually serve the pages you create just like any other web server.

For Apache, you can go to apache.org and download their HTTP Server software. The link is Apache HTTP Server and click the download link under where it says "Apache 2.2.14 Released". This again will create a service that will serve your pages.

So now you have your web server allowing you to serve pages, next you create your pages in a simple text editor like you are doing. I typically use a program called Notepad++ for my editing and it is pure text editor, but adds a few nice to have features including syntax highlighting. Great for catching problems in HTML etc.

Now with those two things you have everything you need to create HTML/CSS/Javascript files on your computer and serve them to yourself as if you were connecting to any computer on the Internet. Everything I am mentioning here is free by the way.

Next is your actual database. If you have SQL Server software, you can use that and run it while you are developing to create your databases and tables etc. If you are using PHP then I suggest you download MySQL. You can get there by using the link MySQL 5.1 and then selecting the OS you use. There you at the top of the list is windows and windows 64. Installing that will give you your database software.


Lastly of course is your server-side language like PHP. Go to PHP.net and download the latest version which is 5.3.1 and at the following link Windows PHP Download you can click the appropriate download. You may want to go with the VC9 Thread safe installer (second link in the second box). This will provide you with the classic install application dialog boxes to help guide you through.

At the end you now have a web server (IIS or Apache), software to edit your files, a database server (SQL Server or MySQL) to interact with, and PHP 5.3.1. This is all you need to create your entire site and pretty much most of your features. Be sure to read the documentation and configure each as you go along. Don't try to install everything and then configure otherwise you will get overwhelmed. You will need to pay special attention to your database server configuration and especially PHP configuration.

All this software is free and will allow you to develop without having an internet connection. So good luck and hopefully your game will hit the web soon. :)
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#3 DaJuiceGOAT  Icon User is offline

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Re: Text-Based-Game / Database software clarification & advice.

Posted 05 December 2009 - 04:23 PM

Thanks for the informative reply Martyr2 i really appreciate it, you've proved to be extremely helpful. :^:

I will check out your recommendations asap.
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#4 dsherohman  Icon User is offline

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Re: Text-Based-Game / Database software clarification & advice.

Posted 06 December 2009 - 05:24 AM

I'm afraid I can't tell you where to get it or how to install it (I'm not much of a PHP guy), but you may want to consider starting off with an SQLite database. SQLite is a public domain, embeddable SQL engine. For most languages, the SQLite database engine is contained within the SQLite library itself, so there's no need to install or configure a separate database server or anything like that, just give SQLite a filename to use as the database and away you go.

SQLite isn't as robust as a server-based SQL implementation in high-concurrency environments, but it's far more than capable of handling personal projects, low-to-moderate-volume websites, and the like.
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#5 php_newb  Icon User is offline

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Re: Text-Based-Game / Database software clarification & advice.

Posted 09 December 2009 - 01:30 PM

I might not be really adding much to conversation, but if you are going with Apache and don't want to go through the process of installing and manually configuring every piece of software that Martyr2 mentioned, you could check out XAMPP. It installs an Apache Server on your machine as well as PHP and MySQL. It's what I am using.

If you need a simple tutorial that explains some of the basics for making a text based RPG, I would suggest taking a look at http://buildingbrows....com/tutorials/.
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