Creating a Game

The GameSparks platform delivers a broad range of capabilities, making it a little difficult to know where to start! This section walks you through some of the initial key tasks required to start working with the platform and create a game, helping you to understand how the various pieces fit together.

Registering an Account

Before getting started as a new user, you'll need to create an account on the Developer Portal. To register, click Register on the login screen:

You are taken to the Register screen, where you can enter your account details:

Creating the Game

When registered, you can login:

Adding a game is a 3-stage process:

Note! In this section, we'll assume you've used Gamesparks before and have already created a game.

1. Log in to the portal. You'll be taken to the last game you had open.

2. Using the Games Menu at top-right, select Add New Game. The Add New Game page opens at Stage 1 of the game-creation process.

3. Enter a Name and Description for your new game.

4. If you want to set a timeout to end a player's session after they disconnect, under Game Settings select the Automatically end player sessions check box and enter the timeout period in minutes.

5. Click Next. The Add New Game page moves you to Stage 2 of the game-creation process.

6. Use this second stage to define some baseline settings for your new game:

Selections are not Final! You'll be able to edit these settings later after you have created your game. See Game Overview

7. Click Next. The Add New Game page moves you to Stage 3 of the game-creation process.

8. You can use this third stage for the Geographical Setup of your new game:

9. When you have completed Stage 3 of the game creation process, click Create. You are taken to the Game Overview page of your new game:

Working with Game Overview? For more details of how to work with the Game Overview page, you can review this page.

Remembering Keys and Secrets

You should take note of your game's GameSparks API Key and GameSparks API Secret, because you'll need these when you set up your chosen SDK. Click Show at the right-hand side of the API Secret field to reveal it - you'll then be able to copy the API Secret.

Working in Preview and Publishing for Launch

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Preview and Live Stages

When you create a game, the game is put into Preview stage. There are two stages - Preview and Live:

Switching to Live? As you develop your game in Preview, publish to Live at some point, and then continue to develop the game in Preview, there are several places in the portal where you can switch between the Preview and Live stages of your game. See below.

Publishing via Snapshots

You should remain in Preview as you develop and test your game. When you are happy with the state of your game, you can create a Snapshot. A game Snapshot takes a copy of everything you've created up to that point in developing the game's configuration. You can then publish the Snapshot. Publishing the Snapshot will copy the game as it was when the Snapshot was taken and moves the game from Preview stage into Live stage.

IMPORTANT! Here are a few important things to note when working with game Snapshots:

Going Live Checklist! Before you attempt to create a Snapshot of your game and publish it to Live, please review the Going Live Checklist to ensure everything runs smoothly.

Managing the Game's Life Cycle

Publishing your game via the use of a Snapshot allows you to easily manage your game's life cycle. You can continue development of your game in Preview while your customers can safely play on the Live stage and you know exactly what state the Live game is in. When you are ready to upgrade your game and publish it with any new features, you can create another Snapshot, publish the new Snapshot, and the whole process repeats again. Simple!

Really Important! Use the Live stage when you are ready to release your game to the public - this should be the ONLY stage your players use, because the number of concurrent users that can connect to the Preview stage at any given time is limited to 100. If your game was left in Preview and more than 100 concurrent players try to access your game, they won't all be able to connect successfully. Obviously, this is not what you want, so remember to take a Snapshot then publish through to Live!

Switching between Preview and Live

Several pages in the portal provide a Preview/Live switch for areas where it's useful to be able to view Preview or Live data as you continue to develop your game beyond its publication to Live. On some of these pages, the Preview/Live switch will be enabled only if you've already published a game configuration Snapshot to Live:

Page Enabled
NoSQL Explorer Only if a game configuration Snapshot has been published.
Manage Screens Only if a game configuration Snapshot has been published.
Experiment Results Only if the Experiment has been published.
Analytics Overview Always.
Analytics API Stream Only if a game configuration Snapshot has been published.
Test Harness Always.

SDK Instructions


This product includes GeoLite data created by MaxMind, available from http://www.maxmind.com.

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