Hey there to all you Snookers and soon-to-be Snookers.
We’re happy to share a more-comprehensive-than-usual update.
Season 1 (September 2021) was our “Trial by fire”. Although a lot of things were awesome (like the validation that the game is fun and easily attracts gamers), quite a few things were clunky. Moreover, certain game behaviors were putting the basic Snook economy at risk.
Season 2 (October 2021) was dedicated to resolving the key issues. The purpose of this piece is to give an overview of some of the changes we are deploying so that we can all test them together in Season 3 (November 2021).
We’re not delineating all the upgrades and fixes we are deploying. That will make this piece too long and boring.
So, without further ado, here are the salient upgrades, not in order of importance.
RPC — start playing Snook in under 5 sec.
TL;DR: You can now start playing Snook within a few seconds thanks to a newly adopted private, Snook-dedicated RPC (with redundancy). Although this is more costly for Snook, it improves the UX of the game in general and specifically the time it takes to start playing.
For those of you who do not know what RPC is, it stands for Remote Procedure Call and in layperson terms, in the crypto/blockchain distributed computing context, it is a piece of software often provided by a third party that is responsible for relaying communication between your wallet and a given blockchain.
As implied and mentioned we moved from public RPC to a private, Snook-dedicated RPC with redundancy and load balancing. The immediate implication is a dramatic reduction of onboarding time. This will also all but eliminate throttling errors/temporary bottlenecks.
Expect the average time for entering the game to go below 5 seconds.
Lock ‘N Load
TL;DR: You can assign several snooks to be played with, lock them into your gaming session and switch even faster. It will also reduce certain network/blockchain information-propagation errors and reduce transaction costs.
To start playing two things need to happen. The first is that you have to “lock” your snook into the game. That means that while it is locked you cannot sell it or transfer it. We think it’s pretty clear why. The second is to “allow game” which means that Snook can now update your snook’s state on the blockchain.
What we did with the new Lock ‘N Load feature is that we combined these two into a single action. That means that you can designate several snooks from your snook lair (that screen with your snook cards on the right) into Lock ‘N Load mode. Whilst they are in Lock ‘N Load mode they are locked into the game. To unlock snooks that you Locked ’N Loaded, you will need to extract them safely from the game.
TL;DR: We’ve done a significant and costly infrastructure upgrade — or better yet overhaul. This will mostly help us manage things better in the backend, which means a better SLA and an indirect positive effect on your game experience.
We don’t want this to become a mini Yellow Paper, so for those who want more details, join our Discord Happy Hour.
We would say that it also includes almost tripling the number of regional servers from 5 to 14.
We added new additional layers of cyber-security. This is part of a bigger plan/project that is being introduced gradually.
Keeping it Skill
We have in place new measures to ensure that Snook will only reward skill. It is also part of a larger plan that we are deploying gradually. Some of the details of this plan will be published. Others will not. It’s never a bad idea to develop situational awareness whilst playing Snook…
On this note, check out the “Let the Hunt Begin” mode as well as changes we made to the snook motion and general kinematics.
Special Skin Rewards
As we implied and also explicitly said on several occasions we’re making some changes to the SSR mechanism. If you are a Rockstar Snooker this should have little effect on you.
Here are the new rules:
- If you unlocked a Special Skin — good for you
- At the end of the season (the end of the month in which you unlocked it) you will be eligible to the SSR with no change. That means a pro-rata distribution of the SSR pot according to the rarity of the Special Skin.
- From the following season and onwards you will have to play with that Special Skin and get at least 8 new Traits during that season.
- This requirement is not cumulative. That means that if during a season you only got 6 new Traits the next season you start all over and need to get 8 (and not just another two).
- Playing your Special Skin will not be allowed in underpopulated servers/game-maps. We’re not saying how many and it will probably change over time — but you’re smart, we’re pretty sure you’ll figure it out.
At your service,