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GOG and Steam owners can't play each other

Xanarki's picture
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GOG and Steam owners can't play each other
#1 Submitted: Wed, 04/07/2018 - 02:18

Tried multiplayer with a friend that has the Steam version, while I have the GOG version. Seems like the multiplayer relies on invites and friends' list, so, we can't play with each other.

I kind of expected that console owners can't crossplay with PC owners; however, further dividing the community, by not allowing Steam and GOG users to play each other? Bad move on Stainless' part. Should of at least added a direct IP option, or built a master server, even.

This forum is pretty dead, so I don't expect any responses, but hey, at least someone had to say something, lol.

Trent's picture
I was in the War!
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Submitted: Wed, 04/07/2018 - 09:17

It's not a matter of "allowing", as far as I'm aware the game uses Steamworks networking API's and services for the Steam version and GOG Galaxy for the GOG version's networking, I'm not sure they are compatible.

Also in order to make sure people who have different updates of the game don't try to play each (and thus potentially break things completely) the game uses a checksum of the game's data core ZAD data to determine which servers it can see, I would imagine the GOG version's checksum doesn't exactly match the Steam version's either due to the minor changes between the two, so even if the networking APIs are compatible that would probably stop them connecting.

Stopping GOG and Steam users playing together certainly wasn't a conscious decision for them but it's an unforeseen architectural issue.

Xanarki's picture
Fluffy Bunny
Posts: 28
Submitted: Wed, 04/07/2018 - 16:51

I guess the only real solution then is if Stainless used their own master server. I feel like it wouldn't be overly expensive; however, I think that ship has sailed. Would be beneficial to the community though. People would be more inclined to setup dedicated servers that are always on.

We might try to use Hamachi or Tunngle though, since there is a LAN option built ingame. Even though those two are for older games, it might just work for this. Dunno...

starbuck's picture
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Submitted: Wed, 04/07/2018 - 18:16

Xanarki wrote:
Tried multiplayer with a friend that has the Steam version, while I have the GOG version. Seems like the multiplayer relies on invites and friends' list, so, we can't play with each other.

I kind of expected that console owners can't crossplay with PC owners; however, further dividing the community, by not allowing Steam and GOG users to play each other? Bad move on Stainless' part. Should of at least added a direct IP option, or built a master server, even.

This forum is pretty dead, so I don't expect any responses, but hey, at least someone had to say something, lol.

So would you pay the bill ?

Why is it that when you are a child at the dinner table you can get punished asking for someone to please pass you the fork and knife ?

shane's picture
Community Manager
Stainless
Posts: 1283
Submitted: Thu, 05/07/2018 - 12:50

Hey guys, as Trent says the Steam and GOG have their own API's for multiplayer networking which Carmageddon: Max Damage uses. The downside is that Steam players cannot join players on GOG and vice versa.

Trent's picture
I was in the War!
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Submitted: Thu, 05/07/2018 - 13:48

Running master and dedicated servers for games is notoriously expensive. Plenty of developers have had to shut down multiplayer on games, or even close up shop entirely, because they relied on their own servers for multiplayer and the continuous outgoings on servers was greater than the income they were making off the game. Given the how C:R/MD's wasn't particularly profitable, having a recurring cost of running servers for the game would be financial suicide.

That's also ignoring the cost of developing their own master server and integrating it with the game, which isn't insignificant. They chose to use Steamworks for the game's networking because it saved them having to spend a significant portion of their budget developing their own secure networking and server software for the game. At the time when they started developing the multiplayer component of the game, Steamworks was the best, most viable option for them. You have to remember, GOG Galaxy had it's first public beta test of it's networking functionality literally a just few months before C:R's beta with networking support was released. Stainless was already heavily invested in using Steamworks and when ever they discussed the DRM-free version they said it would have to have all the online features cut out due to the reliance on Steamworks. Luckily GOG Galaxy came out with it's own networking APIs so they decided to use that and keep online features in the DRM free version. Not being able to play with steam players is better than not having multiplayer at all, right?

But that's all entirely a moot point because, as I explained, the game uses the ZAD checksums to make sure you only see servers run on compatible versions of the game due to early issues with data-mismatches. The GOG version's checksum is likely to be different, so to get the two talking together even with running their own master server would require a developing whole new method of maintaining data integrity between both versions.

Either way, here's a comic I nabbed off Peachbutt Comics earlier which sums up what developers tend to think about these "it's really simple to do this, why haven't they done it?!" type comments rather nicely:

MrDeviance's picture
Cunning Stunt Licker
Posts: 405
Submitted: Sun, 08/07/2018 - 10:21

Because fragmenting an already fragmented mp community that most likely doesn't even exist anymore, is a good ideea...

Fr0nt's picture
Piledriver
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Submitted: Sun, 08/07/2018 - 11:29

MrDeviance wrote:
Because fragmenting an already fragmented mp community that most likely doesn't even exist anymore, is a good ideea...

Can you fragment something that doesnt exist....hmmm

CzechDeath's picture
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Submitted: Sun, 08/07/2018 - 19:57

"Supporting devs" that you are a "fan" of, by *Enter proper description of whatever you'd call your malevolent activity here*, is also great idea =D

Edited by: CzechDeath on Sun, 08/07/2018 - 21:05

Xanarki's picture
Fluffy Bunny
Posts: 28
Submitted: Sat, 14/07/2018 - 09:44

Okay, thanks for the responses. I kind of figured it from the get go, but I guess the real reason for making this topic is so that people are aware of this issue. I was just trying to prevent someone from making the same mistake as I did and so they can purchase the proper version.

Because a simple Google search on the issue states the wrong thing (one of the first and only relevent results actually), that both users can crossplay.

So no, I'm not expecting a fix or a new server (although I admit, never realized how expensive they are), nor am I bitching that the devs didn't work hard enough and I'm entitled (as your inane dumbass comic, probably directed towards me, is implying).

Just wanted to give a heads up for other potentional new customers. Thanks!