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Interview

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Bashir talks about Lands of Nydera
Reshad Bashir gives OMGN insight into himself, and one of the newest MMORPG's on the net, Lands of Nydera
By: Blair Morris | Game Data | 9:11pm, February 13, 2006
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In the world of browser-base, massive-multiplayer onle role-playing games (MMORPG), it seems there's a dime a dozen in the ever growing online community. One of the newer games to come out in this genre is Lands of Nydera (LoN), developed by Leon Renkema and Reshad Bashir. With any browser-base MMORPG, separation from other titles and standing out can be a relentless task, and at times, the most difficult part of being an independent developer. This is no different with LoN.

OMGN recently caught up with LoN developer, Bashir, for some information on this new game. Bashir shares with us some general information on his background and previous works in the gaming community, along with what gamers can expect in terms of features, experiences, and the development team's commitment to making a game based on member's suggestions.


OMGN: For those unfamiliar, give our readers a little self-introduction.

Reshad Bashir:
My name is Reshad Bashir. When I was eight months old, we moved from Afghanistan to the Netherlands. Currently, I live in Friesland, a northern province in the Netherlands. I'm still a student.

OMGN: What is your background in the online gaming community?

Reshad Bashir:
Three years ago, I started playing Runescape. I moved on to Tibia. I enjoyed that game a lot, but I stopped playing because I guess I was too busy with school. While I played these games, I kept thinking of how these games are made. I looked beyond the view of a player, and I slowly dreamed of my own game. A few months later I found RPG Maker, and tried it out, and then found it that it wasn't for online games. I started searching some other engines, and found Playerworlds. When the game was ready, I was unable to make a server out of my computer. A few months later, I was playing Kings of Chaos, and read about PHP in their "About Us" section. I became interested in PHP and started looking into it. A few months later, I bought a game script and made a game out of it. I got permission from my brother to put the game on his server. Through that game script, I learned to program myself. About one year later, my first serious game got launched. Filarn (now owned by other people). The game became very popular, and many current players from LoN have played Filarn. After Filarn, I announced that I was creating a new game called Terracia, and as soon as that started, I didn't have time for Filarn. Terracia, which you can call a basic version of LoN, became popular as well. I started to get tired of Terracia, since it required so much development, and traded it along with Filarn, for three new sites -- Medieval: The Dark Ages, Galactic Oddessy and Martobia. Then I became bored of the game making stuff and sold all my sites to Leon. A few weeks later, we together launched a new project, called Lands of Nydera.

OMGN: How long have you been working on LoN, and what were the first couple of months like working on the game?

Reshad Bashir:
It took three months to finish Lands of Nydera. This is a pretty fast time, but this is because many of the codes are used from Terracia. The first few weeks was like periods of giving up and then getting back at your work again. It gave me lots of headaches, but it was worth it.

OMGN: What has the experience been like working on a game such as LoN?

Reshad Bashir:
I enjoyed working on LoN a lot. When I first started with it, I didn't know as much of programming as I do right now. So, I also learned a lot. I also learned more about RPG games. I now know that RPG games require much more development then strategy games and also that these types of games can become very big, if you just spend time on it.

OMGN: As a member of the development team, what are some of your responsibilities with LoN?

Reshad Bashir:
Many people think I'm the owner of LoN, but I'm not. I'm being employed by Leon, the project leader and full owner of LoN. My job is to make new features, manage the community forums and the game itself, as well as trying to get new players to LoN.

OMGN: What is the current status of LoN?

Reshad Bashir:
We don't really use any status for LoN. LoN is under development all the time and will always stay under development. Since LoN is pretty new so far, I think it falls under the alpha category; but still, we don't use any of these for LoN. Even when LoN has tons of features it will still be under full development, with most features suggested by the players itself.

OMGN: How would you describe LoN to those not familiar with the game itself?

Reshad Bashir:
Lands of Nydera is a multiplayer online role playing game. The game is free to play, but you can also pay for the more complete version of the game -- access to guilds, access to premium islands, and unlimited playing time. The game is under development all the time and has active mods and admins. The game itself currently has many features. The game currently counts 15 skills, one island and we are currently working on some of the small features. Once those are done we will move on to a really nice guild system and two islands. Interaction with other characters is usually the most important part of the game.

OMGN: What are some of the technical aspects of LoN?

Reshad Bashir:
Lands of Nydera has a very simple and clean code. Anyone that knows how to program should understand LoN's code. The game is programmed in HTML, Javascript, PHP, SQL and CSS. HTML and CSS is mostly used for the layout. PHP and SQL is used for the game, moving around, fighting, eating, everything. Javascript is used for the movement with the keyboard. The game uses a MySQL database to store its data. It currently counts 80 tables in its database. The biggest script is the script to manage your own shop, which is 3,331 lines long and about 171kb of pure code.

OMGN: What are some of the main features and experiences the individual gamer will find when playing LoN?

Reshad Bashir:
Most gamers are surprised by all the things they can do. Also, the gamers like the new things they keep finding, within the game. The game has a lot of adventure, as well as a very popular graphical map a lot, and the larger variety of items.

OMGN: What is one feature, or experience, that sets LoN apart from other games of its kind?

Reshad Bashir:
Lands of Nydera is a unique game, you will not find any other game like it on the web. Many of the players like the fact that the admins and mods listen to the suggestions and opinions of the players, also the amount the game is updated.

OMGN: What is your personal favorite feature or experience within the game?

Reshad Bashir:
I myself like the map a lot. It's a nice map with good isometric graphics. The game use to have a text based map, since this new map came out, I enjoy the game a lot more. It's like, you're really in the game.

OMGN: Why should someone looking for a new game to play give LoN a look?

Reshad Bashir:
Lands of Nydera is an often updated and is a free multiplayer online role playing game. With many features and if you want to decide how a game should be like, you can make your suggestions, since this is one of the only games where the admins and mods really listen to the players. Furthermore, LoN is the one and only isometric browser based RPG.

OMGN: What kind of feedback have you guys been getting about LoN for the current players?

Reshad Bashir:
The players enjoy the game once they start playing. There is just one thing they don't like though, there is just one island. As soon as the players get stronger with the skills and such, they run out of things to do.

OMGN: What are some current updates or expansions the dev team is looking to implement into the game in the foreseeable future?

Reshad Bashir:
A list of updates we are going to make, is viewable at in the LoN forums ( http://playlon.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=11 ). To get an update on that list, simply post a suggestion in the suggestions forum. We are currently working on the small updates and are trying to start as soon as possible on the new islands.

OMGN: How large of a community does LoN have at the moment, and what has your experiences with the community been like?

Reshad Bashir:
The community is pretty small right now, much like the game. We want to finish the updates we are working right now first, and then we will start to advertise around to get the community and the game bigger. Until now, the community of Lands of Nydera is a friendly place. Since the game is pretty small, everyone knows each other and we haven't had any real problems with spammers or hackers. So far, it's going good.

OMGN: Anything extra you'd like to share with, or say to, the readers at OMGN?

Reshad Bashir:
The staff knows the game is currently small, with not much players online and a small community. But this is just because the staff didn't really try to get new players yet, since it first wants to complete the updates it has planned. Once this has been done, we will start advertising the game and we are expecting that LoN will grow very fast.
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