Now that our user base on Urban Galaxy Online has grown, we felt "right" to share with you some statistics.
Note that UG is designed to be played within the user's web browser, as an applet-based browser MMO (similar to Runescape), so here we go:
Now on the hard facts coming from users trying to play the "alpha version" which is live:
- 60% of the registered users, passed the login screen and managed to play the actual game
- 40% were not able to run the java applet (linux+osx users maybe?)
- LWJGL Applets were broken on OSX, so we offered an "alternative" option to have them run the game through Java Web Start (temporar solution as to not exclude Mac users from the game)
- OSX Java7 update broke both applets and java web start, so Mac users were not able to run the game without downgrading their java to v6
- Latest OSX "update", removed and disabled java by default, killing the OSX user base.
- Linux users would have to use Oracle JDK, as OpenJDK usually fails to run properly with LWJGL.
- Firefox/Chrome sometimes complain that Java is a security hole and suggests to remove Java plugin.
- We had feedback from "casual" users that did not want to get java installed into their OS
- Some users suffered by BSOD when closing the applet window, probably due to crappy video drivers
What I am trying to point out here, is that the "trend" tries to kill Java Applets from the browser. Trying to make a game that will be profitable by the masses, should be able to be working without or at least with minimal effort from the user's point of view.
Another issue is the localisation of a project. I am not sure whether nifty supports unicode text or not (maybe it does, so problem solved!), but a JME-GWT could handle unicode text more properly as well, without having to deal with textured fonts, as the UI could be build with straight HTML/CSS on top of the WebGL canvas. In UG, unicode is very important, as people should at least be able to chat in their native language, even if the game's interface itself is not localised yet.