18 February 2014

Commercial break 2 – introducing 2 Tablet Pong aka Play On Both

310x310Regular readers might remember the launch of 2 Phone Pong in August 2013, one of the first – if not the very first – action game that could be played on two Windows Phones, first only over NFC, later over Bluetooth. It’s been a moderate success, particularly popular in Brazil and Turkey.

Today I launch 2 Tablet Pong, essentially the same game, for Windows 8.1.

But this release has a little twist – not only can you play against any Windows 8.1 device (provided it supports Wi-FI direct) but also against a Windows Phone running the newest version of 2 Phone Pong, making it possible the first cross-platform action game in town.

The gameplay on two Windows 8.1 devices is exactly the same as on Windows Phone. Here you see my Surface Pro 1 (right) and my Surface 2 (left) being used in the game

Surface versus Surface Pro

This is actually the instruction movie inside the game. As is the next one, that shows how my Lumia 1020 (right) connects to the Surface Pro – which is called “Blue”* on my network

You will need to pair a phone to a Windows 8.1 over Bluetooth first, and then they will be able to find each other. That is to say, the phone finds the PC (after some time), never the other way around. With a PC-to-PC connection it’s a matter of who starts first – the last one always finds the connection.

There were some interesting challenges to the port, but thanks to the extensive use of MVVMLight and my WpWinNl library I was able to use 90% of my code and I think 75% of XAML. I mostly used shared code, sometimes partial classes. There are also some extra rules in the Windows version – the ball speed adapts to the size of the screen, so if you play the game on half a screen, it will only go half as fast, or else it will become unplayable.

The game is free, but will be ad-supported in a soon-to-be-released update. I hope it will enjoy a just as enthusiastic reception as it’s phone predecessor.

I will soon update WpWinNl with everything I learned from porting this game, and I have a lot to blog about – I hope the community can benefit from that. Enjoy!


* disclaimer: those who think the name “Blue” has any significance or hints at something – I have a total lack of fantasy as far as device names are concerned, so I have a long standing tradition of naming my PCs after my wife’s pet hamsters. “Blue” is a 26 month old Russian dwarf hamster – she is called that way because that’s the name of the color variety. Go Bing it if you don’t believe me. My next PC will be called Smokey ;)

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