The Blog

Posts from August 2009

Aug 18

Major League Gaming + Agora Games = Crazy Delicious

By David Czarnecki

Major League Gaming acquires Agora Games

I’m just going to parrot the MLG news post here.

MAJOR LEAGUE GAMING ACQUIRES AGORA GAMES

Deal brings online, multi-platform development expertise to fast-growing competitive gaming property

NEW YORK CITY—AUGUST 18, 2009—Major League Gaming today announced that it has acquired Troy, NY-based Agora Games. Known for both its technical expertise and elegant product development, Agora has built some of the leading video game community applications in the industry. Together, Agora and MLG will work both to enhance MLG’s online offerings, as well as to expand the services that both companies currently offer to the game publishing community.

“Cross-platform video game competition is what MLG is all about,” said Matthew Bromberg, president and CEO of Major League Gaming. “We already operate the largest online competitive gaming property in the world. Agora is the leading developer of multi-player communities in the world. Coming together with Agora allows us to double-down on our biggest strength.”

Over the last four years, Agora has developed some of gaming’s highest profile, most ambitious community websites for titles including Guitar Hero, Transformers, Call of Duty World at War, and Dance Dance Revolution. Their technology currently tracks game play statistics for over 25 million players around the world. Founder Michael DelPrete will remain as president of the wholly-owned subsidiary. Agora will continue to operate out of its Troy, NY office. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“MLG has shown the world that competitive video gaming is both a great live sports experience and can be the basis for a thriving online business,” said Michael DelPrete, founder of Agora Games. “We share a vision of the marketplace, and we’re confident the combination will better serve our existing customers and open up new opportunities to expand our offerings.”

The acquisition presents significant opportunities for game publishers. Agora has become the go-to technology developer for handheld and web-based extensions of video game experiences. Major League Gaming has proven its ability to build massive audiences around exciting new competitive social experiences. Together, Agora and MLG will partner more deeply with publishers and developers looking for deeper engagement, more ever-green experiences, and greater unit volume.

ABOUT MAJOR LEAGUE GAMING Major League Gaming is the largest professional video game league in the world. MLG is the dominant media property exclusively targeting the approximately 40 million consumers in North America who have a passion for playing video games as a competitive social activity, while giving sponsoring brands access to this highly influential demographic. We represent the best professional gamers and give millions of aspiring players around the world an opportunity to compete, improve their skills, and socialize through our thriving online community and live Pro Circuit competitions.

Aug 13

More Transformers Please!

By Christian Arca

Once again, our work for Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen on the Nintendo DS has been ‘called out’. This time it’s Wii DS UK from - you guessed it - across the pond. They call Battle For Eath a, “bright light.” Here’s their bit about Battle For Earth:

While there’s the usual ‘link-up with your friends and kill them’-style deathmatch, allowing players who own either version of the game to pound on each other with the named characters from the story or their character from the main game, there’s also a special mode called Battle For Earth, which lets players duke it out for fame and glory, a list of the best players available on the official website.  The missions are more or less the same as the ones available in the main storyline, so it’s not ‘true’ DLC, but it’s certainly a step in the right direction for any DS owners looking at their console-owning comrades in jealousy. _For the full review be sure to visit http://www.wiids.co.uk/2009/08/11/transformers-revenge-of-the-fallen-decepticons-ds-review/. _

Aug 11

wiredump_dev = STDERR

By David Czarnecki

If you are ever debugging SOAP web services from Ruby and wondering what information is going across the wire to/from the web service, wiredump_dev = STDERR, may be your best friend.

def some_method_that_uses_a_soap_web_service
  storage = SOAP::WSDLDriverFactory.new(STORAGE_WSDL).create_rpc_driver
  ...
  storage.wiredump_dev = STDERR
  response = storage.DoSomething(...)
end

When the DoSomething web service method is called, the Ruby SOAP library will print out the request and response to STDERR.

It is invaluable. Trust me!

Follow-up (8/13/2009): A friend pointed me at Handsoap, a library for creating SOAP clients in Ruby, which is an alternative to SOAP4R. It apparently does not suck. YMMV.