What is Stars! AutoHost ?
AutoHost is an automatic web based host for the game Stars!
It is hosted by Ron Miller and is built on the ideas and core code of Thomas Tong
and his "Stars! TurnXChange" site. The original PERL code received from Thomas Tong is available for download. It allows a web server to automate the hosting part of the game. Since the start of AutoHost (May '97), Ron has adapted, heavily modified, and improved the PERL cgi code received from Thomas Tong. Improvements are always being discussed, worked on, and added by both Ron and Andre.
The reasoning for this system is that the classic e-mail method is slow and tedious. The game host often waits for turns to be submitted to him, generates a turn and then e-mails them back out to the other players.
IRC blitz games are on the other side of the spectrum. People have to devote 5-6 hours together to play a Stars! game. It's difficult to play a large game to an end due to scheduling constraints.
The idea of the Stars! AutoHost is that people can submit their turns to the server, the turn will get generated and the results posted on a web page for retrieval when they are all submitted. Players can see that their turn has been received within about 3 minutes of being sent. The amount of turns generated per day can be totally dependent on the speed that people wish to submit their turns, or game hosts can enfore a turn gen schedule. If a turn gen schedule is not chosen by the game host, to ensure that players who skip turns don't hold up the game too long for everyone, a maximum time limit between turn generations is implemented, set by the game host.
Stars! AutoHost automates the hosting of multiplayer Stars! games. Both full versions of Stars! are supported. Version upgrade patches are also available for download. Upload and Download of turn files by web, e-mail, and FTP (FTP download only) are supported. Mirrored game status pages for each game are maintained. Players are notified by e-mail when the next turn is ready. A secure web based host utility program allows game hosts to customize their game controlling many features including announcements and turn gen schedule times. A general Stars! discussion forum is also hosted here. More features are allways under way from Ron and Andre. And probably best of all,
it is free! :)
Linking to Stars! AutoHost
If you wish to link from your Stars! web site directly to our web based Stars! discussion area or to our main page you are more than welcome to do so. If you wish AutoHost to link to your page please send an email giving your web site address and request to be listed. We especially like to list web sites that have content and/or are actively in use. To link to AutoHost please take a quick look at some suggested HTML code and graphics on our Link-Up page.
Stars! AutoHost Home Page