House of Cards Ltd approach us requesting the implementation of a prototype 3 Card Brag (aka 3 card poker) gaming application which enables players to challenge each other over the internet. The application had to provide game lobbies where players could meet and set up new game rooms where they could play. Players can configure game rooms to meet their requirements (e.g. set the minimum / maximum stake, set the maximum number of seats at the table, set the speed of the game, set the experience level, etc).
When two or more players are sitting within a virtual game room the game commences. The game is required to follow the standard rules of 3 card brag (i.e. bet, raise, show cards, fold).
The application permits players to play with fun money (i.e. virtual money) or real money. When playing with fun money a player’s objective is to accumulate experience thus enhancing their in game status via the player rating system. Also players aim to increase their account balance thus enabling them to enter the high roller game rooms. If a player depletes their account balance then they can request a top up of 1000 credits to start again. Players also have the ability to bet using real money – therefore they are required to deposit money into their live game account. The game rules are identical to that of using fun money except real money is being bet.
Ultimately the game had to be fun, easy to use and visually attractive. The client requested that the game be implemented for the Windows operating system and utilised standard internet communication protocols to enable players to connect.
The client required us to create a prototype version of the application first. This was to fit in with their business model. As a start-up company they had funds to pay for the software to be developed, but needed further investment for the backend gambling costs and set-up. To facilitate online gambling companies need to prove they have the financial capability to operate in order to be licensed.
For this reason we selected the Agile methodology to get a working prototype as quickly as possible. During the initial research phase of the project our systems analyst researched the various versions of 3 Card Brag and then proceeded to discuss with the client the specific rules that they wanted to be implemented. Also we analysed a selection of online gaming applications to obtain inspiration with regards to graphical design and features offered. On completion of the research phase we presented a feature specification document (FSD) to the client for them to review. A document review meeting was conducted where the requirements were discussed and finalised.
We immediately commenced the development phase and within a short duration our team began to present prototype versions of the application to the client. For the Agile process to be effective the client is required to frequently review new features once implemented thus enabling them to adjust the functionality to meet their exact requirements. This process enabled us to complete the application in the shortest possible timeframe.
Microsoft Visual Studio, C++, MVC, WinForms, Linux ANSI C (server development), TCP/IP, Socket Programming, MYSQL, Distributed System Processing, Web Services.
Our development team was successfully able to implement the envisaged prototype system within the tight deadline which was requested by our client. The solution incorporated all features that were requested by the client and the functionality worked flawlessly.
The client was very happy with the visual representation of the application, game rooms, virtual tables and player avatars. Furthermore the client was pleased with the intuitive design of the application which made it easily useable by inexperienced computer users.
The project was completed on schedule and the client was very pleased with the completed product.
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