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Play Network Games

Preface

Although many people like their networks because of file and print sharing, plenty like to connect just to outsmart or outgun their friends and family in any number of network games. Fortunately, networks lend themselves easily to such conflict resolution.

Network hardware options

If you're a game player, a LocalTalk network is sufficient for many networkable games out there, such as Marathon and Warcraft. Many of these games were programmed to work across dial-up internet connections, so have no problem running on the speedier LocalTalk. There are exceptions to this, however; if you do run across a game that plays unacceptably slowly or won't play at all, you should consider making the jump to Ethernet.

If you're running your network across Ethernet, you should have no problems playing whatever game you wish, as even 10BaseT Ethernet's transmission capacity is plenty large enough for even the most demanding games.

A note about playing internet games

If you hook your own internal network to the internet as described in the Connecting to the Internet page, you probably won't be able to play against internet opponents as you might hope to. Although merging your network to the internet works effectively for things like web browsing, internet games generally require that each participant have their own IP address. Since only one computer on the network has a "real" internet IP address, only one computer will be able to play games.

Playing AppleTalk games

Many Mac network games out there support playing across an AppleTalk network. Note that for AppleTalk network games, you don't need to set up file sharing, just turn on AppleTalk. Once you have the game started up, look for connect via AppleTalk network play option. If your game doesn't support AppleTalk play, you'll need to try one of the other options.

Playing TCP/IP games

Many of the newer games out there, especially games like Unreal and Quake, allow you to play network games through a TCP/IP connection. TCP/IP has the advantage of being cross-platform, so you can quickly set up a mixed network qm_icon picture and start frying your friends and enemies, no matter what computer system they use. See the Make your own internet page for TCP/IP network setup instructions.

Playing IPX games

Some network games only give you IPX as a connection method. If you want to play IPX games on the Mac, you need to pick up the MacIPX software and install it on each Mac that will be playing IPX games. You can find the MacIPX software in the Networking 101 section of the Networkable Mac Games site. Once you install and configure MacIPX on your Mac, playing network games using it is a breeze.

Questions not answered?

Problem still not solved? Questions linger? If so, please send mail and I'll do my best to help out. I try to answer all mail with 24 hours, although it can take longer if the answer requires some research.

Contents of Three Macs & a Printer are ©1996-1999 Matthew Glidden (except for the bits that aren't).

Questions or feedback? Feel free to send mail.

[This page was last updated on 3/6/99; 8:28:41 PM.]



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