Qmaster

And as a completely direct contrast to the frantic and minimal and solitary development of the October Challenge game we’re into right now, today we have for you an announcement of our latest completed game project making it to the App Store — the “Big Secret Project” that we’ve been hinting at for a very long time as it stately wound its way through development.

Introducing: Qmaster!

Masters of trivia have moved silently throughout time until now. You feel compelled to play the game. It’s not a choice and it’s a near universal compulsion among fellow Qmasters that they cannot resist – they must duel each other.

Gather online with those who dare to challenge your knowledge of trivia and embark on your journey to becoming the next Qmaster! Knowledge is power, and as each duel takes place, the opportunity for a promotion is at hand. Progressively improve and strengthen your abilities – where the few who remain will battle to the last…

Yes, you’re reading that right, it said “trivia” and “duel” in the description both. We think we’ve actually invented a new genre of game here, “Real Time Trivia”. At least, if there’s ever been any other networked head to head trivia duelling games, we couldn’t find them.

So the deal is, you’ve got a big whack of trivia questions — most of any trivia game in the App Store last anybody checked — and you answer those more or less as you’d expect in any trivia kind of game, aside from the fact that the questions and scoring are all provided by the server instead of on the device,

Study_Incorrect_Punished.jpg

and you build up your level in all the various categories of questions, so you’d have a set of scores that look like this:

Target_View.jpg

which your possible opponents can find as they browse for you on the map. Yes, as they browse for you on the map.

Locate_Selected.jpg

So we don’t just have a head to head networked trivia game, we have a geolocating head to head networked trivia game. By this time, I trust you’ll agree we’re well into territory which counts as distinctly unusual indeed, and quite likely actually unique.

(Oh, btw, HOT TIP to avoid a rejection cycle: Notice in that last screenshot the lower left “Google” logo isn’t visible because the map extends under the mildly translucent bottom button bar? Uh-uh. No approval for YOU! So be careful with those map view boundaries.)

So there’s quite a bit going on here, indeed. The gameplay and structural design was set out by Charcis Games, the company created new for this game that it’s listed under in the App Store; all the client code was of course pounded out by your humble troll; the server side is a production of Justin Johnson aka FatBird.ca, whom we unreservedly recommend for your hardcore web server development needs; and the pretty artistry is the work of Justin Baker who brought the shiny real good as you can see.

Any-hoo, if that sounds interesting, it’s FREE! to download and build up your first few levels of questions with, and no ads either; the revenue model is that you purchase a subscription to gain levels past the first few, attack more often, reveal the correct answer when you’re wrong (that’s the green highlight in the first screenshot) and so forth. The idea being that there’s no barrier to getting people involved with the game.

[POST-MORTEM: Now withdrawn from store…]

Alex | September 30, 2010
  • Ray Wenderlich October 5, 2010 at 8:12 am
    Just checked it out - great job guys! My favorite part is plotting all the players on the map - took me a while to track your accounts down heh :] Makes me want to add this to my own apps just for funsies to see where all the users are. 5 star review added to iTunes to hopefully help things start rolling for you - best of luck!
  • Alex October 5, 2010 at 8:43 am
    Well, thank you very much Ray! Although I'm actually pretty cool with the initial rollout going slowly; having a chance to tune the server with more users than the handful of beta testers before it gets any big attention anywhere seems like a darn fine idea to me. Once we're confident it does actually stand up to significant usage, *then* it's marketing time :)

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