Series of Facebook Games Driven by Robust BI-enabled platform for Apps and Ads Management

  • Load-resistant and scalable architecture
  • In-game payment system and powerful billing mechanism
  • Integrated cross-reference advertising network

Context

Ambitious objectives

Our customer ― Product Madness Ltd. ― is a US based innovative company specializing in Facebook gaming. Following its ambitious expansion strategy, the company planned to launch a number of new applications and to improve those already on the market. The scope was really wide, ranging from casual games (e.g. farm-like, social quizzes, etc.) to gambling (e.g. online poker, blackjack, roulette). Another large-scale task was to build an efficient software platform capable of managing applications and advertisements, handling accounts and billing, collecting and processing user statistics.

Dedicated Team Long-term Engagement

Product Madness decided to partially outsource product development to an offshore vendor to rapidly scale up the team and efforts, while keeping development costs down.

Comprehensible knowledge transfer capability, seamless communication and uninterrupted collaboration process were essential criteria for choosing a vendor. Thanks to outstanding references, relevant industry expertise and established Dedicated Development Team practice, Itransition was selected as a primary technology partner.

The customer started with a short trial period to verify Itransition team’s technical expertise and development process quality. It was a challenge to integrate the team into the customer’s existing processes, sort out a massive array of legacy code and provide several fixes for a set of interdependent applications. Itransition successfully completed several pilot tasks, utilizing agile methods with swiftly changing priorities identified in daily communication along with the fastest and most cost-effective technology for building web applications like Ruby on Rails.

Once started, the partnership was expanding from year to year resulting in a host of successful gaming apps and smart back-end solutions.

Solution

Itransition’s dedicated team was to accomplish a number of development tasks. The Flash/Flex developers were in charge of realization of the game rules and scenarios, while the Ruby on Rails and Java programmers worked on applications’ business logic execution.

Cutting-edge Technology Stack

Ruby on Rails with MySQL Percona

Ruby on Rails was selected as a primary technology for application development due to its proven scalability, efficiency and simplicity in further support and enhancements. MySQL Percona high-performance server was utilized on the database layer. Itransition’s team provided performance optimization along with code refactoring.

Prawn reports generation library and ActiveScaffold plug-in

To optimize the reporting process, Prawn library was identified as the most relevant solution. It was integrated into the Application Manager to support business analytics. The library can retrieve data in a PDF format, supporting a wide range of settings to configure PDF documents’ properties and its content. ActiveScaffold plug-in was utilized for managing objects in admin panels.

RSpec and NewRelic verification and reporting tools

RSpec was chosen as a main framework for unit tests description and verification. NewRelic add-on was used as a monitoring and reporting tool to provide detailed data on application performance and errors.

Comprehensive Application Manager

With a large number of games developed and numerous others placed in the product backlog, the customer needed a tool to effectively manage all the available applications and related system events. The major challenge was to develop the tool that would allow configuring all these applications on the fly.

The Application Manager, a unified control panel, became a powerful solution for facilitating games supervision and configuration. It provides the following functionality:

  • Business Intelligence including user/audience statistics processing
  • Applications and games activation/deactivation
  • Games settings and ACL configuration
  • Target group/marketing settings setup
  • Facebook applications notification management

The Application Manager serves as a central management hub for global application delivery and business analytics processing.

Integrated Advertising, In-game Money and Billing

To support seamless cross-referencing between different gaming applications, Itransition’s dedicated team implemented an advanced custom advertising engine using Facebook Ads API. The back-end system with aggregated usage and spending statistics integrated into the back-end platform allows administrators to drill down to each product in order to obtain detailed information on the cash flow for the services paid.

The platform utilizes an in-game payment system, which provides plenty of opportunities for offering user incentives such as bonuses or achievement rewards. It also significantly simplifies billing processing and funds management.

Results

Games Played by Millions of Facebook Users

Itransition team developed a scalable, high load-resistant solution able to handle tens of thousands of users simultaneously playing games on Facebook:

  • 100 million users for one installation
  • 450,000 active users daily
  • 2.2 million users monthly
  • 40,000 requests per minute with the average response time 45 ms
  • 120 Gb of data stored daily with further analytical processing

Itransition’s dedicated team accomplished a series of development tasks, including:

  • Existing games refactoring, maintenance and improvements
  • New gaming applications development
  • Application Manager tool engineering
  • Ads Management Engine development and integration
  • Billing solution development
  • In-game Payment System implementation

As a result of the team’s effort, a host of new Facebook games, like 3DSlots, TeamSlots, GameShow, BigCityBingo, and many others, were launched on the network piquing huge interest of millions of users monthly. A smart and efficient application management tool combined with a powerful advertising engine employed in Product Madness’ gaming apps contributed a lot to the market success of this collaboration.

Itransition became a major technology expert and primary development center with the dedicated team working as an organic highly productive extension of the Product Madness in-house team.

Screenshots

Highlights

  • Solutions

    Media Content Distribution

    Social Networking

    Billing & Payments

    Gaming

    Business Intelligence

  • Industries

    ISVs

    Media & Entertainment

  • Technology

    Ruby

  • Engagement model

    Dedicated Team

Quick Start