PeopleFun's success is built on the talent and commitment of its diverse team and a laser-like focus on its core competencies – developing and monetizing engaging word games for iOS and Android devices. So, when it wanted to add a realtime ‘zing’ to its turn based Wordchums game, building its own realtime communication capability and integrating it with game engines like Unity was not an option.
Leon Campise, Vice President of Operations & Engineering at PeopleFun, explained: We briefly looked at what it would take to build and implement our own realtime protocol - which would essentially operate as a Unity networking library - and quickly decided against it. To build even a basic solution would be a formidable effort and we don't even want to own that IP. Building games is what we do and what we want to focus on so, as far as possible, we buy-in everything else.
Instead, it wanted to find a realtime infrastructure partner able to support some exacting demands:
Predictable realtime performance would be vital to consistently delivering engaging, fast-paced game play - for instance ensuring game moves are shown to other players in real time, driving live chat and updating realtime leaderboards.
Realtime message integrity was also a crucial consideration, because duplicate messages or wrongly ordered messages directly impact the quality of the game experience.
With the business primed for growth and realtime set to play a central role, it wanted to find a genuine partner willing to work in close collaboration – scaling to support growth without impacting on PeopleFun’s financial models.