A story about playbeyond.com -Competitive gaming platform

For almost two years Ragebite has been involved in developing a competitive gaming platform with team Beyond that’s powered by Logitech. The goal? To scale up Esports to a new level.

To realize such a demanding project was a real challenge for us at Ragebite, but it was a challenge we overcame and the results… well… judge it for yourself!

Playbeyond.com went live yesterday, on the 18th of November 2020, in an open beta before an official launch. You couldn’t believe the amount of excitement both teams endured for the past two weeks as the launch day came closer. We had our ups and downs like everyone, but we made it!

The feedback we’ve received overall so far has been nothing but positive and here’s a little quote to confirm!

We approached the Ragebite team with a complex and ever-evolving development project – they took the time to get everything right from development to support and we are very pleased with the end result

Joseph Bentley, Head of Beyond at Logitech

Before I give you the deets of what transpired during these two years, a formal introduction about Beyond Entertainment is in order.

Beyond Entertainment’s background

Beyond is a community-driven website, firstly founded in early 2012, that specializes in hosting high caliber tournaments for over 35,000 members.

ASTRO gaming partnered up with Beyond Entertainment back in 2014 to help promote their events. They’ve also sponsored them with cash and hardware prizes. As you can imagine, this was only the beginning for the team Beyond.

As 2018 emerged itself, Logitech G was already acquiring gaming brands to have under their belt as they’ve taken a strong interest in the industry so Beyond was definitely in their crosshairs and the deal was closed. Core Beyond staff members have joined Logitech and have continued to support the community and build the brand.

Early 2019 – Beyond Entertainment approached Ragebite with an inquiry to build a platform that you see now in front of you.

Playbeyond.com – The core

The competitive gaming platform we’ve built is ready to house thousands of new players that are coming from the Beyond community and more. In its arsenal, it has a lot of cool features and functionalities. Let’s see if we can go through a couple?

Single sign-on Logi ID

Accounts are created through Logitech’s SSO (single sign-on) system – Logi ID. Beyond has a direct link with Logi ID via an API connection. A single Logi ID email and password gives you access to your Logitech, Logitech G, Ultimate Ears, ASTRO Gaming, and now Beyond accounts, as well as apps, software, services, and communities.

Besides the old fashioned email and password, Logi ID supports logins through other networks such as Apple ID, Facebook, and Google.

The real benefit of using Logi ID is allowing players to create their accounts within a couple of seconds and be ready to play.

Ladder competitions

Everyone who joins a ladder is initially set in Bronze 1 rank and goes all the way up to Master 25. Teams then challenge each other to play matches and record the match results. They move along the ladder according to how well they do in the matches against the other ladder participants. The ranking is updated automatically and the match scores are saved. The player on the top of the ladder becomes the winner when the ladder competition ends. Naturally, winners are awarded sponsored prizes from team Beyond‘s partners. So you may have a new cool headset or some cash coming to you if you’re good enough!

The point system is based on a unique/modified Elo ranking. This allows teams and players to be even more competitive in their journey to the top of the standings table.

Needless to say, all matches handled through the manual score reporting system. If results are non-conflicting they’re automatically patched through and the teams exchange points on the standings table. If results do come in as conflicting, the on-site admins are there to handle any disputes that arise.

Leaderboard system with sponsored prizes

To win on the leaderboard you don’t have to be crazy good or even decent. What matters most? Match activity. To scale up and go further on the leaderboard system means that you only need to be active, follow rules, complete matches and at the end of each week, month – you’ll get a cool reward in return.

By definition, the leaderboard is a ranking table that drafts up players from the whole platform and ranks them based on their match activity. Initially, there are two types of leaderboards the global leaderboard (site-wide) and the game leaderboard. Meaning each game has its own leaderboard and awards its players for their match activity.

Selection of games and modes

The platform for team Beyond has been built to support multiple games and modes. But for now, in the open beta, only Rocket League will be available for the time being.

Social aspect of Beyond to nurture the community

As a platform that gathers players worldwide, it is equipped with a friend system that allows users to connect in order to make a team and to join an event. With friends you’ve added, you’re able to chat with them as you stay on the platform or play matches! If you’ve missed a message from a player while you were offline, the inbox will do a great job of keeping the message safe.

On an opposite note, everyone is big on privacy in 2020 and some people want to be on the safer side. So you’re in control of who’s able to reach out to you or who is not able.

Technical point of view on Playbeyond.com

Ragebite as a studio that’s been involved in the industry for over five years has gathered experience working on other projects and our own products. We’ve advanced so much through out the years, so let’s say we’ve been able to bring our A-game for this project.

Real-time events and process of incoming data

The playbeyond.com is based on having real-time events such as messages coming instantly, friend requests appearing the same moment you get them, match results appearing on the page as soon as they’re reported. This trend has started to have traction on all services used daily so Beyond joined the club.

Large-scale web application

In the developer’s eyes, playbeyond.com is a large-scale web application. People have different notions of what large is, what’s large for some might be the medium size for others and small for some others. But a large scale web application has characteristics such as these:

  • Performance, being able to handle a large number (millions) of users/requests or a large number (thousands) of transactions per second. Both have challenges depending on the type of app (CPU bound, IO-bound, or both).
  • Scalability, the horizontal type, not only at the webserver level but also at the database level. A lot of integration challenges arise from connecting heterogeneous solutions together and make them behave as a single application.
  • large scale applications are distributed, taking advantage of CDNs, or running the app on servers geographically closer to the user.
  • availability of the web application 24/7;
  • some other, miscellaneous keywords to throw into the mix like SOA architecture, data-warehouses, security, distributed caches, continuous deployment, etc.

Responsive to all devices

Here’s a quick explanation of the responsive design and how it works. Essentially, responsive design is a way to put together a website so that it automatically scales its content and elements to match the screen size on which it is viewed. It keeps images from being larger than the screen width and prevents visitors on mobile devices from needing to do extra work to read your content. Playbeyond is prepared to handle users from any device and the experience is kept the same.

Ragebite’s case study of Playbeyond.com

During the previous months, we’ve been also preparing for the day Beyond goes live. Our team has constructed a case study featuring a designer’s point of view on the network Behance. Personally, I’m more of a fan of presenting a project this way. So check it out!

Link to the presentation https://www.behance.net/gallery/108054619/Playbeyond-Competitive-gaming-platform

To be continued…

This is only the beginning for Playbeyond.com, as we’re sure it will continue to expand as it grasps more players daily in the open beta. We here at Ragebite will continue to support them and now we have to look forward to their official launch that’s TBD.

I can only say that this… this is a beginning of a new series for our blog, as we have lots more to share with you guys!

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