Bluff Avenue Blog

Updates and news from the Bluff Avenue trenches.

Just rolled out some more changes.  Finally got around to implementing some game client security features that I had been procrastinating on.  I suppose I should really say patching up some nasty major security holes I knew about that would've been quite embarassing if they had been discovered. :)  But on the other hand, I'm sure hackers are going to be lining up to break into a play money poker site.

 

Also in yesterday's release is a layout redesign for the game client.  Previously I had the chat window and all of the controls along the right side of the game.  This unfortunately made the game kind of on the wide side, and impossible to embed into a web page if I wanted to.  The redesign puts all of the controls on the bottom, which should be familiar to most people who have played poker online.  I also saved some vertical space by showing only the top halfs of players' cards.

 

Oh, and I added a "beta" to the logos, just in case anyone mistook this for a production-quality site! ;)

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The two biggest new Bluff Avenue features in the last month are scheduled tournaments and opening and closing cash game tables.  What exactly does this mean?

 

Scheduled tournaments are just that--tournaments with a scheduled start time.  Pretty basic, but up until last week Bluff Avenue only supported sit & go's and manually-started tournaments.  Now you can choose a date and time for your tournament to auto-start.

 

The second major feature concerns cash games.  Previously, cash games followed a similar design as most online poker sites--each game listed in the main lobby represented one cash game table.  For a couple of reasons, I decided to ditch that and go with a different model.  Now, the main lobby displays cash games, which can have one or more tables.  A "cash game" now refers to a group of tables that are all playing according to the same rules and stakes (blinds, buy-ins, etc.).

 

For example, on most online poker sites, looking at the cash game main lobby you'll see a huge list of tables that you can play at.  Typically, you'll have a pretty specific idea what kind of game you want to play (e.g. 5/10 blinds, deep stack buy ins, etc.) and will need to filter the list because there are so many tables displayed with different stakes and rules.  Well, on Bluff Ave, you'll see only one entry for each type of cash game, rather than each table.  When you click on the cash game, you'll be taken to that cash game's table lobby, which displays all the tables in that game.  This should make it much easier to find a table in the kind of game you want to play.

 

Another tied in feature is opening and closing tables based on demand.  Cash games now have a setting "Open new tables if needed"--if this is set to yes, Bluff Avenue will ensure that there is always at least one empty table for that game.  As soon as someone sits at the first table, a second table is created.  This makes sure that a game always has open tables to play at.  Individual tables may fill up, but there will always be more tables with open seats.

 

For most online home games, this is probably overkill, but for large online leagues, it should be a pretty handy feature.  Bluff Avenue's public games will all have this feature enabled, as well.

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Site Redesign

Wednesday, June 10, 2009 11:49 AM

Lots of new stuff in the last month.  Probably the most obvious one is the visual redesign.  I didn't want to launch the site looking like a carbon copy of Zoji, so I've been tinkering with the appearance for...longer than I care to admit (these creative-type things take a lot of iteration before I end up with something I'm happy with).

 

I was aiming for something a little more modern-looking, in a centered, single-page format (unlike Zoji's 2-part, left-aligned style).  I picked red as the primary color element because of the logo, but I thought the light blue from Zoji's blue color scheme complimented it nicely so I kept it.  Anyway, let me know what you think!

 

Also new: the domain!  The site was far enough along that I thought it was time to move it from its test domain to its public domain: bluffave.com.

 

Let's see, what else is new...

 

  • An observer mode so people not logged into the site can watch a game in progress
  • Crash recovery:
    • If the server goes down while you're in a cash game, all the money you have on the table is credited to your bankroll
    • If the server goes down while you're in a tournament, the remaining tournament prize pool is distributed amongst all the remaining players
  • Viewing the full leaderboard for a group
  • Group player winnings can now be edited
  • A setting to allow non group members to post to a group's forum.  This allows the Support group to be used as a forum for user questions, help requests, suggestions, feedback, etc.

 

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Multi-table tournaments

Wednesday, May 6, 2009 9:32 AM

Multi-table tournament support is in!  You can now create tournaments with up to 10 tables (this may be increased in the future), with either 9 or 6-player tables.

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View your bankroll transactions

Wednesday, April 22, 2009 11:08 AM

You can now view your bankroll transactions by clicking on the bankroll amount, either in the "Bankroll Balances" box on your home page.

 

Now to work on multi-table tournaments.  Woot!

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