Web Portal and Game Development Services
- Casual game portal with a unique fantasy universe
- Consistent and contemporary user experience
- Facebook integration
The Customer decided to develop a branded web portal that would host a number of fun and attractive casual cash games, jackpot lotteries, and a massively multiplayer online game (MMO).
The Customer is a company that specializes in system development for the game industry. The company envisioned a game portal with a unique cartoon-style fantasy design and needed an experienced provider of web and game development services to bring the idea to life. Cooperation with Iflexion started after the successful delivery of a pilot project.
The solution is a complex online cartoon game universe which consists of several parts:
- Massively multiplayer online game (MMOG). An online skill-based casual game. Users can play it for fun or for cash in their browsers via a plug-in.
- Lottery. Registered users can buy lottery tickets for the points won in the MMOG. The winner is identified randomly between 5 and 10 days after the jackpot is created.
- Casual games. Lots of games are available for the users: Slot Machine, Roulette, Treasure Hunting, etc.
- Facebook application. Users can play portal games on Facebook when logged-in.
- Sophisticated front-end. A fancy looking interface provides access to all features listed above. It also ensures multi-browser compatibility.
- Administrative panel. The customer staff manages the public website via an access-based administration panel; the functionality contains user and account management, reporting, game management, etc.
Iflexion’s business analyst carried out a detailed analysis of customer needs and investigated the technical environment. When the requirements were specified and documented, our portal developers turned to architecture design. Overall, there were seven iterations in the project, including prototype creation, beta release, and post-production stabilization. A prototype released at the beginning of the project enabled the Customer to better understand the future gaming solution and fine-tune the requirements. This prevented costly mistakes and helped make the process of game development smooth and predictable.
- Rich immersive user experience: there are dozens of unique locations to explore, games to play, and characters to interact with via an attractive 2.5D user interface.
- Separate business processing engine: some operations are required to run independently from the portal and game sessions, so the engine schedules and executes tasks in an asynchronous manner.
- Facebook integration: users logged in their Facebook accounts are signed in to the portal automatically.
- Great scalability and performance: the portal supports a geographically dispersed user base with varying bandwidth availability and network lags and can be easily scaled up and down in the future. An unlimited number of users can play games simultaneously thanks to distributed application servers hosted by Amazon services.
- Reporting on business-critical data: administrators receive generated reports that include drill-downs, graphs, and statistics.
- Robust integration with a number of third-party services: the portal supports CommerceGate, OfferPal, and Zong.
The data access tier of the application had to manage considerable amounts of data and at the same time allow rapid development to follow the project deadlines. The MySQL database server and Hibernate technology were implemented at this level.
The solution provides powerful back-end capabilities. To achieve that, we have chosen Java EE 6 and Spring Framework as a platform. The Spring Framework acts as the business logic layer performing many common tasks (such as Hibernate integration, transaction management, user session management, etc.).
The presentation layer was implemented using open source JSP and OpenSpace, which renders and displays the game universe.
The games have been developed with Flex and ActionScript and integrated into the universe so that the users can play games in the virtual world. The MMO game world was built with a graphical technique called 2.5D isometric tiles, which delivers very immersive user experiences, even though it is not full-blown 3D.
The implemented game universe was launched and is accessible to anyone with an internet connection via the Customer’s website. The portal hosts a number of casual games and the game world where thousands of users interact simultaneously. A great number of players from geographically dispersed locations are able to enjoy these games due to the portal’s great performance and scalability.
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