WHAT'S IN THIS CHAPTER?
Writing an XMPP bot
Creating sophisticated protocols
Collaborative spaces on top of multi-user chat
Almost everyone enjoys playing games, and if the successes of the massively multi-player online role-playing games (MMORPGs) like World of Warcraft are any indication, people enjoy playing games with others. Many games depend on low-latency interaction between players, and others need features for players to find each other and communicate. XMPP offers a lot of built-in functionality perfect for games, and more complex features are just a few extended stanzas away.
XMPP excels at sending small bits of structured information back and forth, which games can use to pass around changes to the game's world or state. This is really not such a different problem from other forms of collaboration; the only real difference is in the purpose of the data. Just replace the buffer full of text in Chapter 10's NetPad with a dungeon full of monsters. To XMPP, it's all just bits of XML.
As long as players are not playing alone, communication is an important part of game play. As you've discovered throughout this book, XMPP has a wide variety of tools for communication of all kinds, and most of these tools are built-in and ready for use without much work required. Remember just how easy it was to add chat to the NetPad application? The same can be done in games. Add some game-related information alongside players' presence, and what ...