D5.2 is a web-based game in which players explore an infinite procedurally generated world. Players can claim sections of the map and build on them (tunneling through mountains, building bridges, making gardens are most common activities at this point).
The basic architecture of the game is very open, similar to the intar-web: The client program (a java applet, for now) reads data (rooms, tile palettes, sprites, and room generators) from a shared filesystem (any URL scheme supported by Java is supported for reading data, HTTP is supported for writing, as will a local filesystem in the future). The player travels between rooms much as web users browse web pages - rooms are connected to others by links which normally point to 'spatially adjacent' rooms, but could also point to any other room, potentially even on a different web server (though running as a java applet prevents inter-server linking, this limitation is not inherent in the architecture of the game). Because of this architecture, it is really a single player game, though one where many people contribute to the environment. Mutliplayer features, such as allowing direct interaction with other players (not just rooms they have built) may be added in the future.
This game, for me, is a reaction against strategy games such as age of empires where building up a city tends to result either in its destruction, or its disappearing at the end of the game. While building in D5.2, players don't need to worry about their creations dissapearing, and so can feel free to put more time and effort into making an interesting world. Current users have described it as 'addictive in a strange, new way' and 'goddammit i need to do my diffeq homework but this is so much fun' :)
Download stuff from the project page. Packages include Java (1.5) source code and class files and PHP scripts to help you get a server up and running.
There is also a public server that you can play on here. Java >= 1.5 is required. You will need to create an account, but this is fairly painless. It is important that you read the instructions before you start messing around.
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