Sunday, May 15, 2011

Super hero Squad (our latest title) is now live

Things have been quiet here because all my attention was focused on Super Hero Squad ( It is a Marvel title developed at The Amazing Society in Seattle, a studio of Gazillion. It is a light weight MMO, uses the Unity graphics engine, Smartfox, Apache, some Java apps on the back end, and MySQL. It is shardless, and the architecture scales horizontally with the number of concurrent players, including the database. The back end components are loosely coupled based on JMS publish/subscribe.

It has definitely been a fun project, and I'm working with a team with lots of deep experience. Load is ramping up, but not yet near the load tests we ran ahead of time. So I'm paying attention, but not anxious about it.

Along the way, we found ways to ship early and still have a fun and stable game. But as with all MMO's that actually launch, there is a lot of work left to do when you are "done". The context switch is challenging right now to go from: "we have to ship; we are not going to do that", to "remember those things we cut to simplify things; its time to put them back on the table". Now we have the fun of changing things without breaking a running service. And monitoring and fixing the service cuts into development. So things slow down at the same time they get more reactionary.