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Topic: Vanishing Point

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Jaesonx5
rank 7
Posted:
Fri Jul 10, 2009 9:36 pm
quote : #1
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Posts: 51
Type: NTSC-U/C
Does anybody know anything about the game named Vanishing Point? It has online capabilities but it requires a password and I'm not sure what needs the password but after you type in a password it searches for a server for Vanishing Point but then says it cannot be found. What does anybody know of this game, I tried it and it is the number one racing game in my book. There is an online Tournament in it which can be played, the game is incredible to my eyes which have seen the play of Daytona 2000 and 4X4 Evolution!
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lordnikon
rank 86
Posted:
Sat Jul 11, 2009 7:35 am
quote : #2
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Posts: 5889
Type: NTSC-U/C
Vanishing Point did not have realtime online multiplayer like Daytona did. Instead it merely access the website where you could upload ghost files in an Internet Ranking. That is what the tournaments were for Vanishing Point.
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Jader-Fox
rank 2
Posted:
Sun Dec 05, 2010 6:53 pm
quote : #3
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Posts: 7
You're wrong, but Vanishing Point had online mode, I played it!
These days I wondered, because he is not in the list of online games here in ONLINECONSOLES.
He asked for password because it requires registration to play!
 
lordnikon
rank 86
Posted:
Sun Dec 05, 2010 9:20 pm
quote : #4
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Type: NTSC-U/C
I have never played the game online before. Everywhere I have ever read, the game didn't have realtime multiplayer. The only review still on the internet that even indicates tested multiplayer is IGN's review, which states the following:

"Finally, there are the online features and while the game doesn't sport head-to-head racing online, you can get online and compete in various changing challenge. Complete these changes with outstanding skill and you may be placed on the public rankings along with other players."

http://dreamcast.ign.com/articles/164/164733p1.html

If you have evidence to the contrary please do let me know.
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rjay63
rank 5
Posted:
Sat Oct 29, 2011 5:16 pm
quote : #5
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Posts: 38
Type: PAL
I just bought this game today and decided to look up information on its online functions. A quick search revealed the hompage:

http://web.archive.org/web/20031006063132/http://www.acclaim.com/games/vanishingpoint/internet/index .html

There was definately no online head to head racing............instead various 'Challenges' could be downloaded once an online profile had been set up. Some of these challenges seem to allow single play in what was normally a multiplayer only mode. Sadly as a login was required to access this information, I cannot find any files on archive.org. There were also various online ranking boards.

Last edited by rjay63 on Wed Feb 08, 2012 7:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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Kbuzz
rank 23
Posted:
Sun Oct 30, 2011 7:38 am
quote : #6
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Posts: 473
Type: NTSC-U/C
I'll check it out. I easily have about 20 hours in this game but never checked any of the online modes since there was no way to make use of them. It's one of my favourite racers and would have loved to play it online. I'd imagine there wasn't much competition though since it's difficult to even find a few forum posts on the game.
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rjay63
rank 5
Posted:
Wed Feb 08, 2012 7:10 am
quote : #7
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Posts: 38
Type: PAL
I've been speaking to a former Vanishing Point player via Youtube who took part in the Internet Challenge. Just to correct my previous post: no additional VMU files were downloaded. Instead you connected to Acclaim's servers and the game would automatically set up the challenge. Once it was set up, you could even disconnect your DC and go back online when you wanted to upload your best result. Ghost cars were not available but the best scores/times to beat were on display.

Now I wouldn't have worried if these challenges could simply be replicated offline however some of them allowed single play in what was normally a two-player only mode. Namely Balloon Buster challenges where each time you popped a balloon, you gained extra time/score for your ranking. I'm not an expert but I'm guessing VP was programmed to accept special code from the server. If so, do anyone think there is a possibility an Action Replay hack could replicate this code..or is it gone forever?

Many thanks
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lordnikon
rank 86
Posted:
Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:52 pm
quote : #8
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Posts: 5889
Type: NTSC-U/C
Its not impossible. Learning more about how the game worked online certainly helps. While getting actual "online games" back online is extremly difficult. Doing creative programming with save files is actually rather achievable. In-fact, its achievable for games beyond just ones that had online functions advertised in the past. You could take saves from almost any game and process/parse data within them to create rankings or other interactive features.

There is some stuff coming down the pipe with regards to scripts, rankings, etc at OF Project.

We will add Vanishing Point to our list of games to look into. So any further research on this such as the process flow info you have dug up so far will help greatly.

I'm not 100% sure if we could replicate the exact features of Vanishing Point's online mode. Though can we create something with Vanishing Point that is interactive from a network standpoint? Probobly Wink
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rjay63
rank 5
Posted:
Sun Feb 19, 2012 3:46 pm
quote : #9
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Posts: 38
Type: PAL
I have a bit more information about VP's internet facilities. It used something called 'NetSpine' developed by Acclaim (publishers of Vanishing Point). Here's a paragraph from an old press release back in late 2000:

"Vanishing Point uses NetSpine technology to allow gamers to compete on a worldwide basis for the top race scores and maintain them online. The game's Internet Mode consists of a series of challenges, all issued via the Vanishing Point game servers. When a player connects to the game servers, the game will automatically download the new challenge in addition to existing player names and top scores. All players begin at the novice rank when they log into the server for the first time, and must successfully complete challenges in order to advance. Upon race completion, gamers will be able to upload their in-game scores to the Vanishing Point server. The racer's score and race statistics will automatically be updated within the game and at (Acclaim's old website)." (http://www.allbusiness.com/media-telecommunications/internet-www/6525098-1.html#ixzz1mrkSuo1A)

Basically you would complete these internet challenges to gain a higher ranking. You started with Novice Challenges but once you had enough points, Expert and Pro challenges would appear instead. There were up to 8 challenges on display.

I know assemblergames.com have some documents on NetSpine as part of their Acclaim archive project. Unfortunately I'm out of my depth with this kind of stuff! Sad
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rjay63
rank 5
Posted:
Thu May 14, 2015 7:16 am
quote : #10
profile : pm
Posts: 38
Type: PAL
I'm currently assisting a player in trying to get 100% completion. In order to do this I downloaded a partially completed save file and I found the original player had made an online account! In order to set up an account, you first had to choose a nickname and password and then connect to Acclaim servers. Now this can't be done now as there no server to connect to but I wonder what information is contained within the account. I can see the player set up the account but did not compete in any of the online challenges.
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lordnikon
rank 86
Posted:
Thu May 14, 2015 8:35 am
quote : #11
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Posts: 5889
Type: NTSC-U/C
Very interesting rjay63. Was this the PAL version or US version?
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rjay63
rank 5
Posted:
Thu May 14, 2015 12:21 pm
quote : #12
profile : pm
Posts: 38
Type: PAL
lordnikon wrote:
Very interesting rjay63. Was this the PAL version or US version?


I have the PAL version but this seems to be an NTSC save. You can also use NTSC saves on the PAL version of MSR (providing you select 60hz).
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gingerbeardman
rank 1
Posted:
Mon May 18, 2015 5:07 am
quote : #13
profile : pm
Posts: 2
Type: NTSC-U
rjay63 wrote:
I'm currently assisting a player in trying to get 100% completion.

Thanks for your help on this!

I have an NTSC-U (chipped) Dreamcast that I had a regular PAL power supply put in by a friend who worked for Sega Europe (long story).

Anyway, in my time playing Vanishing Point I used the official PAL retail release. But later changed to the faster loading DC-RES repack, which is NTSC 60Hz. My findings are that the same, unmodified save game works across all region versions of the game. Hopefully that information is of some help.

I'd also be interested to help with the recreation of the Acclaim server.

I've reached out to some of the developers of the game on social media.

Cheers,
matt
 
gingerbeardman
rank 1
Posted:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 4:39 am
quote : #14
profile : pm
Posts: 2
Type: NTSC-U
Me again!

I noticed recently that the manual for Vanishing Point has some clues about how the online mode looked and worked.

http://www.gamesdatabase.org/Media/SYSTEM/Sega_Dreamcast//Manual/formated/Vanishing_Point_-_2000_-_A cclaim_Entertainment.pdf

pdf page 12 (manual page 18)
Game User Interface, Online menu
- Challenge (pick 1 to 8)
- Previous Results
- Top Rankers
- Track Hi-Scores
- Internet Options
- Connect

pdf page 13 (manual page 19)
Online profile contents
- Name and Flag
- Rank
- Points
- Trophies
 
darkxangel55
rank 1
Posted:
Mon Nov 12, 2018 4:26 pm
quote : #15
profile : pm
Posts: 1
don't mean to bump this old post but i just would like to say that your looking at one of the number #1 players from VP that played the online made back in the day. my user name at the time was 666sinboy. if anyone would like to ask questions about the online made i can answer some but keep in mind my memory is not what it use to so i'll try my best. Smile
 
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