Problem: 

(2014) Inspired came up with an idea of putting a different ‘spin’ on playing the traditional card game ‘Tonk’ (reference). The goal of the implementation was to add a competitive, over-the-top spin on the card game, with inspiration from the popular arcade classic ‘NBA JAM’. Inspired wanted the app to incorporate elements such as ‘On-Fire’, when the user gets consecutive card scoring plays and ‘Cold Streaks’ when the user is not scoring on consecutive plays. The first iteration of the app will be ‘User vs. CPU’, with the idea of having other game play scenarios such as:

  • CPU vs CPU
  • Player vs. Player (local)
  • Player vs. Player (remote)
  • Tournament

Plan:

Create a ‘delayed’ (2) phase rollout of the app, with the iOS version being deployed first and the Android version shortly thereafter. The thought behind the ‘delayed’ rollout was to gather feedback and metrics from the iOS release, to see if pursuing an Android release was a worthwhile effort.

Execution:

The app was initially created using a tool called ‘SpriteBuilder’. This tool was a game development suite for rapidly building native iOS and Android games with Objective-C and Xcode (Android deployment was available via a plugin – now defunct). The core of the tool was using a framework called ‘Cocos2D’, which allowed Inspired to utilize the following:

  • Design the app user interface
  • Create scene and card game play animations, using the timeline features
  • Create spritesheets from PNG image assets assist with animation and file sizing
  • Export project to Xcode for more specific code and development

After creating the scenes, animations, and other ancillary artifacts for the app via SpriteBuilder, the project was exported to Xcode for further development. At this phase we developed the following items in Objective-C:

  • Rules engine –
    • Create game rules and point scoring system 
  • AI –
    • Create AI opponent that is able to play within the rules of the app and make game-play decisions based on the scenario of the game
  • Sound management –
    • Handle playing the game music and sound effects for the app
  • Game management –
    • Overarching game management system that ties the major components together (rules, AI, sound, user-interaction, etc.)

Result:

We were able to complete the project and deploy in Apr. 2014. The app went through a few revisions and we are currently looking to revamp the app in 2019/2020 with more robust features and multiplatform.

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