Ryan, your post yesterday gave me an idea that I wanted to run past you, and 
really everyone for that matter.  It occurred to me that quite a few arcade 
style games get posted, that don't support online high score lists.  In most 
cases I'm sure this is due to lack of equipment or not knowing how to handle 
the server side of things.  Since I've got the community supporting a server 
for my games, I thought I could help solve those 2 barriers that have been 
getting in the way.

I'm still figuring out how best to set this up, but here is the idea.  I 
adjusted the software on my server to handle high score lists.  Developers who 
have games will contact me and I'll send them an 11 digit password along with a 
small 8kb file called hsa.exe.  In your game, written in python I believe, you 
can simply run that file and pass it a command line argument that contains the 
password, the person's score, and their player name.  Obviously your game would 
have to have its own way of getting the player's name, but that's nothing 
difficult.  The little program contacts my server and passes the information 
along, all in the background, with no one even knowing what happened.  The 
server accepts the data if the password is correct, and it does the work of 
putting them on your high score list based on score.  When people view the 
webpage, they can easily see the rankings.

Here is the example I currently have running, for testing purposes.
http://www.kaldobsky.com/audiogames/highscores.htm
The webpage side of things probably needs to be made more accessible, but 
please take a look.  

Each different setting of your game, like grid size, number of blocks, and so 
forth, would have its own password so that it would have its own high score 
list.  The 2 lines at the top, the 1 line at the bottom, and the number of 
people in the high score list can all be set using a separate admin program 
that I would also give out to the developers.  The tiny hsa.exe file would be 
sent along with your games, but the admin program would be kept with you of 
course.

I'm just wondering if this type of idea would provide easy high score tracking 
for our large group of developers that aren't already using high score lists.  
With this test high score list I've got running, I'm encouraging people to play 
around with it and see how it works.  The hsa.exe file can be downloaded here.
www.kaldobsky.com/audiogames/hsa.zip
Just put it into your game's directory, and execute it with the command 
argument from within your game.  The password for this practice score list is 
398-093-129, so here are some specific examples of how you can submit high 
scores.

If you had a player named Goblin, and he just ended a game with 45 points, here 
is how you could submit that score from within a python game.
import os
os.system("hsa.exe 398-093-129,45,Goblin")

>From within a Visual basic 6 game.
x = shell("hsa.exe 398-093-129,45,Goblin",0)

Or even from a dos batch file.
hsa.exe 398-093-129,45,Goblin

Give it a try and please let me know if you guys think this is a good idea, and 
if you think other developers would actually want to use it.

> Hey Jeremy,
> Thanks for the kind words.
> High score posting is something I'd like to move to
> eventually. I'll need to
> learn to work with the web development side of things
> first, though. Since I
> intend for the rest of my titles to have a great deal of
> focus on
> multiplayer, I'll have an excellent opportunity to do that
> learning. I'll
> also need to work in some sort of limitation system so that
> players who are
> careful and strategic don't end up losing out to people who
> just crush
> things pell-mell and get lucky. And then there's the fact
> that a game set to
> gigantic, megashift, 3 types can't, in my experience, be
> lost. It sure is
> fun to break things, though.
> Ryan


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