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2009
Dec
20

A Few Site Updates

Categories: Site Updates

Proper Flash player detection is now functional. If the required minimum Flash version is not detected:

  • Express install will be initiated
  • Bingo game pages will show an appropriate update message (as a secondary measure, in case the Express install is missed)
  • If the player tries to open a bingo game room, a pop-up warning message will be shown, so this effectively blocks access to the bingo games until the player meets the minimum Flash version required

I also made the bingo game icons (small bingo card previews) smaller and removed some duplicate links in the game pages to cut the height of the bingo game tabs area. This moves the bingo game room links upwards, above the fold, so it becomes more accessible without the need to scroll down the page.

I’ve also fixed the way Flash parameters are being sent to the games, so Flash files don’t get unnecessarily reloaded when switching game rooms across the same bingo game.

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2009
Dec
17

Bingo Game Server Updates

Categories: Bingo Game Server

The bingo game server has been updated so that incoming packets with invalid formats are properly discarded, so it doesn’t create run-time exceptions which may halt operations.

When the game server has been restarted, it will also keep track of all players whose games have been interrupted. HB already does this by automatically crediting players with additional points, but BingoGems does it a bit better by showing a pop-up message immediately after signing in, before crediting the compensation points. This should make it more obvious to the player that he did not lose points because of the game server being restarted.

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2009
Dec
10

Spin Bingo Revisions

Categories: Bingo Game Server, Flash Bingo Games

I was doing more extensive Spin Bingo tests the last few days, so several changes have been made:

  • Fixed a bug when the Spin button is not initially enabled when buying bingo cards during an existing game
  • Fixed Jackpot not being reset properly when it has been won
  • Fixed Jackpot computation so it is shared among multiple winners
  • Number of winners being reported during intermission was reporting the total number of players (since all scores are being displayed), fixed it so only the true number of winners is reported
  • If there are ties for the same rank, only show the first occurrence of the rank (makes it easier to browse the list)
  • Fixed Jackpot tag of each player not being properly set (when the data is sent to the Flash bingo game)
  • If the player is in the current Top 7 standings, it will now be highlighted in the Top 7 display, this makes it a lot easier for the player to spot his real time standings
  • Additional checks in the buy card event to avoid a player reset of spins generated
  • Buying of bingo cards mid-game is now only allowed if the game time left is still at least 45 seconds (no point in allowing more players to join beyond this, since the player is very unlikely to still be able to finish the spins on time)
  • Fixed progress bar issue where it is not being updated anymore if the player finished the game early
  • Fixed winner names not showing the pop-up when clicked (even though it works in the other bingo games)
  • Comma has been removed from all score displays (less clutter on screen)
  • Top 7 display has been reorganized to make things easier to read, it will also differentiate between zero spins left and all spins completed (by displaying FIN)
  • Make sure that players who have not bought bingo cards are excluded from the player list during intermission (previously they are still being included with scores of zero)
  • Fixed progress bar getting full then adjusting to a lower value (this happens when the player finishes the game early and buy is still allowed. The progress bar is based on buy duration, it should always be based on the game time instead)
  • Fixed a MAJOR bug that occurs when a spin packet is delayed: the wheel animation needs to loop and it ends up still showing the previous spin results which makes dabbing appear totally incorrect (this issue has been quite hard to reproduce, so I’m glad I was able to catch and fix it prior to launch time)
  • Improved wheel animation when a looping is needed, so that the brief pause that occurs is prevented
  • Added simple glow animation to the Spin button, so it becomes more obvious that the player needs to click the Spin button to continue (this was added mainly as a help feature for novice players)

Other changes affecting not just Spin Bingo, but all bingo games:

  • Winner voices have been generalized, so it is now shared in all bingo games (downside for Spin Bingo: the game doesn’t announce anymore if you rank in the Top 3, upside: this made the voice files smaller)
  • Final announcement will detect whether the player is a regular winner, jackpot winner etc
  • Duplicate sounds on similar buy card events are now suppressed

It’s quite an extensive list of changes. It has been possible to detect more issues, since I am now testing with multiple players (how this was done, I will discuss in another post).

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