Help with Starting a Peer-to-Peer Game

Hi Vassal Gurus,

My friends and I would like to play a P2P game. (We could go the server route, but I’d rather not, if possible.) I’m struggling with the instructions and was hoping you guys could take a look. FYI, we’re running VASSAL 3.5.8.

I’m reading VASSAL 3.1 Userʼs Guide Version 1.1, November 2011

I’ve already followed the instructions for “Resetting Your Default Connection” on p 8, for my laptop and my friends’ laptops. No problems thus far. Now to host a game on my machine!

To host a game on my laptop, I follow the “Launching a Game → To start a peer-to-peer game” instructions (p 9). They state:

1. In Module Manager, in the Module Library window, double-click the module you want to play. The Welcome Wizard opens.
2. In the Welcome Wizard, under Select play mode, choose Look for a game online, and then follow the other Wizard steps as the module requires.
3. Click Finish. Your module now loads.
4. Click the Connect button.
5. In the Server controls, click Invite Players.
6. In the Direct Connection dialog, enter another player’s IP address and port number and click Invite. Then, continue this process for each of the other players.

…and there’s more instructions beyond that. I get stuck between Steps 4 and 5.

Here’s me at Step 4 (“Click the Connect button.”):
Pict 1
When I click the “Connect” button, it opens the “Direct Connection” window. (below)

But Step 5 says “In the Server controls, click Invite Players.”:
Pict 2

I don’t see a “Invite Players” button. Here, I can click “Add”, enter my friend’s name and local IP address, then click the “Connect” button. The moment I click “Connect”, the player log reports:

- Invitation sent to Player Clark []

But on my friend’s laptop, nothing happens. No invitation that I can see arrives.

I have a funny feeling that this is an issue with our laptop’s firewalls, but I don’t want to mess with our firewalls to test until I’m reasonably sure I’m following procedure. Do you see something here that suggests I’m screwing up the instructions? Thanks!

I suspect those directions are horribly out of date, being for version 3.1. I’ve never done a P2P connection myself, but it looks like you’ve followed the correct steps. Are you and your friend on the same local network? 10.x.x.x addresses are for systems on the same network. If not, your friend has given you his local IP address instead of his router’s IP address…

The entire IPv4 address space starting with 10. is private and non-routable, so unless your friend is on the same LAN as you, that address won’t work. You need to use a public, routable address if you’re going to connect P2P.

It would be simpler to use the public game server if you’re having problem with this.

@jrwatts Thanks JR, Yeah, my friend and I are on the same network; in fact, we were both sitting at my kitchen table while trying to work this out. When we turned off our laptop firewalls, we could ping one another. But I couldn’t work out how to launch a P-2-P game. Hence the post.

@uckelman Thanks Uckelman,

Yes, my friend and I are on the same local network. In fact, we were sitting across my kitchen table when we were trying to get the P2P stuff to work. When we turned off our laptop firewalls, we could ping one another. So I don’t think IP connectivity was the issue.

I get that the public game server is the tried-and-true method of doing an online game. As I understand it, if you play on the server, then you must make your module publicly available for anyone who might want to download it. I’d rather not do that, as my module is packed with weird in-jokes for my friends and myself, but also it also uses a ton of copyright images that I do not have the rights for. I’d hate to post the module on the server, play a game or two, only then to discover that it had to be pulled down. That defeats the purpose. Hence my interest in getting a P2P game working.

There is no need to publicly share the module to use the public server. As long as every player has a local copy of the module, you can run it through the public server. Other people will be able to see the name of the module you’re playing, the name you gave your game room, and who’s playing it (if they happen to check the server status), but that’s it.

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I thought it was explained in another thread that none of this is the case. Maybe it was someone else who asked something similar though…

EDIT: Nope it was me replying to you, in fact! Maybe you didn’t see it.

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@jrwatts Ahhhhhhhhhh… thank you, that is valuable information. I’ll read over the User Guide sections about hosting a game through the server. Its a relief that my friends and I can play privately! Thank you

@JoelCFC25 Yes, sorry Joel, I don’t mean to be clogging up the forums with repetitive questions. I wanted to try and get a P2P game working and have been focusing on that as a solution. But now I’ll investigate the server option more closely. If my friends and I can play privately on the server, that’s all we want. :slight_smile: Thank you for your wisdom and persistance.

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Yep, just distribute your module privately and ask everyone not to disseminate the link. Then you’re good to go–even password-protecting the room (which you can do if you want) isn’t necessary, since observers wandering in won’t see anything–image data doesn’t go over the wire.

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