Ueda

New Server Software!

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Dear Ninja,

The Problem
In Mid-2019, when attempting to run a Inter-village Joint Chunin Exam, and subsequently a War Event, we found ourselves in a situation where we could not continue those events due to the server crashing because of the increased load on the server software/application. As some of you might know, Nin Online was built on top of an engine that was built in the 90s, using a programming language that is very outdated, Visual Basic 6 (VB6). Not for no reason, in 2013, this engine was the only viable choice to build a game like Nin Online available open source. The engine that Nin Online was built on was a fork of Mirage Source called Eclipse Engine, which was built by @Robin.

From that point on, I knew that the growth of the player base would be unsustainable on our current VB6 server software, and started moving all of our resources into resolving this issue as a priority.

The Conversion Project History
It's been a long journey to get here, but we're finally in the final stages of using our new server software rewritten in a modern programming language. This is not the end of the project to enhance the server, infact, it's a new beginning. This long project has seen multiple attempts, the earliest works on it began in late 2018. But with the addition of a new member to our team, @TheWolf who has been working with us since February this year, we've managed to get it to a point we think it is capable of replacing our old server software completely.

The project consisted of many stages, and we have a lot of people to thank for their contributions. Including @Seth for leading the charge for the project in the majority of 2019. At that stage, we were trying to convert the server from VB6 to VB.NET, but it ran into a lot of issues. Issues that we learned from and restarted in February 2020, with mainly Wolf and myself working to get it converted from VB6 to C# this time round. Seth also jumped in a couple of times to lend a hand in this new version, being more familiar with the Authentication Server's code base than anyone else.

We also got a lot of advice and help from @Robin whom helped us each time the project ran into a dead end.
As well as @Suirad for creating a whole application to convert our VB6 binary data into readable JSONs which we then converted to C# binaries format.

The Benefits of this Project
Immediately, we expect everyone to feel noticeable improvement to the game, less hanging, more smooth combat. But the real reason we needed to move is that VB6 was simply too limited in features, and it's outdated IDE made it hard for us to debug problems like the crashes that were happening with too many players online while hosting events, as it gave us little information to work with. Thanks to this new server software built in Visual Studio/C# we can use state of the art tools to solve these issues as well as continue to optimize the performance to scale better. On top of all of that, there was always the fear that eventually Windows would stop supporting Visual Basic 6 runtime although highly unlikely in the near term, it will down the line happen. So moving to a modern code base means we are future proof.

This is just the start..

  • We are going to continue to optimize the server in radical ways which will bring about better performance!
  • With this fancy new server, it'll be easier than ever to add more on top of it, including new features and revamping old ones.
  • During the time which the server has been the main focus, I've also been working on content updates for when the New Server Software is finally operational, so expect some content updates soon!
  • Wolf is also in the midst of rewriting the Game Client in Unity C# which will then mean that Nin Online will be fully modernized!

TL;DR
New server software is up now, it was a lot of work, this means Nin is more than 66.6% modernized now. only our client remains. That's in the works. Content updates coming soon.

Regards,
Ueda

 

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Update 7/5/2020
As of about an hour ago, we have pushed another optimized version of the server that addresses some lag spikes / hanging that was prevalent in both the old server and the new server yesterday :) It's thanks to the new modern IDE that we were able to find quickly what the issue was and resolve it.

This is still just the start!

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Update 7/6/2020
Today @TheWolf has put out one more update, this time I can safely say that Ping/Latency will be the least of issues for most people from now on.
We are still working on the new client which will address FPS lag, but for the time being, this has been a great update for Nin Online!
If you've had a bad time in the past due to latency, I urge you to give it another try!

Personally my Ping has went from 350-500 unstable to 290 stable.
Seth has also noted that his latency is almost the same with or without ExitLag.

The networking library that the server uses has been replaced with a modern networking library that should theoretically support thousands of players. However, our implementation of it is still not perfect. We'll keep at it! Cheer Nin on!

 

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Most didn’t believe in the vision 

but now they see the vision 

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2020 isn't all bad! Amazing work everyone <3 

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Well well well, something good came from 2020 after all.. keep up the good work . <3

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Glad you guys are still working hard for this game, thanks for your devotion.

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Been here from the beginning of the journey till now and I must say patience is key and passion to continue after so many failed attempts is the lock. You've opened the door now Rory only thing left is more doors to become open which will lead to great things for the game.

Keep up the work @Ueda @TheWolf @Seth @Serias @Master Ant @Erox @Emiya and thanks for the chance to see these things unfold since the start.

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It's been wild, amazing work, don't stop yet!

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Congratulations to the whole team for your hard work so far.

Note:"... this means Nin is more than 66.6% modernized now." Is Rory confirmed illuminati?

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The server is kinda laggy atm, like charging and casting jutsus. I'm hoping these things will be fixed as you guys work on the server more. Never really had this issue on the normal server. Still great work nonetheless, hopefully we can see smoother gameplay in the future so that it's easier to counter aimless masteries. Also looking forward to more content soon. Thanks for the fun game.

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i've read every dev blog....I SEE THE VISION
can't wait for that 3-way joint chunin exam <3

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I remember seeing Nin in 2013. You've walked a very long road. Good job guys. <3

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Clone time.

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