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 Technology Summary

Client-Server Technology:

The entire SpiritWars™ client-server technology was developed by Kellogg Creek Software, and has no reliance on any existing WON.net services. While the free version of the game is still currently running on servers in their data center in Santa Clara, we can easily migrate the servers/services to any suite of NT servers with little complications. (We estimate that down-time for such a move will be less than an hour.)

The underlying system is TCP/IP based and is client-server rather than peer-to-peer. The game server (and client application) do support an option peer-to-peer connection between the players once games have been initiated; however for a variety of reasons we can discuss, we have opted to keep it working in the server-client mode.

Both the client-server system and the configuration of services on the server end are scalable, allowing easy distribution of server functionality as the player base grows and additional server functionality is required.

The games data structures and communication packets were designed for optimum performance and minimal packet size. Even players with 14.4 modem connections can easily play SpiritWars.

Chat World:

The SpiritWars chat system includes multiple rooms within both the free and pay versions of the game. Each chat room represents a dedicated chat server; with a supporting server-side communications service that broadcasts current chat room populations to all connected players and updates player status (in game, available, busy, etc.).

Private messages, popular "emote" messages and color-keyed name lists distinguishing users status (players, helpers, moderators, tournament directors, etc.).

The chat system is also currently connected to the 24/7 ad delivery system via a custom OCX object developed by Kellogg Creek to meet the specifications required by both WON.net and 24/7. Our client-server configuration is also designed to manage the delivery (and all statistical reporting) for ads delivered by the game itself if we switch to a different system and need to manage the display and tracking of ads ourselves.

The SpiritWars chat system includes a hidden meeting room for staff meetings and new moderator/helper training.

Tournament System:

The tournament system in SpiritWars represents one of the most versatile and challenging playing experiences currently available in an online strategy game. Modeled loosely after the "sealed deck" model in the card world, each tournament event uses a "Rule Set" which defines the spirit population (collection of playing pieces) available to participating players. It also includes specific dungeon (deck) building rules that will apply to that event.

This tournament model also provides an effective tool for showcasing the games versatility and collection of spirits to the free players who never see the entire collection of spirits when playing the non-member version.

You can get take a look at the versatility of the SpiritWars tournament system by visiting the online summary of Rule Sets used recently in tournaments.

Moderated Online Community::

The SpiritWars chat community is strictly a G-Rated atmosphere. Our staff of experienced moderators are supported by tools that aid in managing problem players. The banning system not only bans the offending players, but prevents any other player accounts from being created (for the free version) on that machine. A player ban effects all machines that the offending player has used to connect to the SpiritWars server.  

Our online helpers (denoted in green in the players list, hence the Green Team designation) have a special New Players room that includes teaching aids to help them teach the game.

The SpiritWars online community is currently supported by an online staff of over 50 volunteers (moderators, helpers and tournament directors). 

Update System:

SpiritWars includes an auto-update system that recognizes when a player's client application needs to be updated and triggers an automatic file retrieval system to keep the player's up-to-date with the current version of the game. In an online game like this, there is NO backward compatibility and it is imperative that all players always be using the current version of the client application.)

League Play:

One of the newest features in the SpiritWars community was the introduction of League play. Teams of players competing in a weekly schedule of matches that resulted in a playoff system for the top teams at the end of the season. Future leagues will incorporate the tournament system.

SpiritWars™ is a registered trademark of Kellogg Creek Software.