Game Center

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Game Center
IOS7 Game Centre logo.png
Developer Apple Inc.
Type Online service
Launch date September 8, 2010
Current version
iPhone 4, 4S, 5, 5C and 5S
iPad 2, 3rd, 4th generations and Air
iPad Mini 1st and 2nd generations
iPod Touch 5th generation

7.1.2 (Build 11D257) (June 30, 2014; 9 days ago (2014-06-30)) [±][1]

Apple TV 2nd and 3rd generations
6.2 (Build 11D257c) (June 30, 2014; 9 days ago (2014-06-30)) [±][2]
Preview version
iPhone 4S, 5, 5C and 5S
iPad 2, 3rd, 4th generations and Air
iPad Mini 1st and 2nd generations
iPod Touch 5th generation
8.0 Beta 2 (12A4297e) (June 17, 2014; 22 days ago (2014-06-17)) [±]
Platform iOS
Members 67 million[3][4]
Website apple.com/game-center/
Game Center for Mac
Game Center Icon.png
Developer(s) Apple Inc.
Initial release July 25, 2012; 23 months ago (2012-07-25)
Stable release 1.0 / July 25, 2012; 23 months ago (2012-07-25)
Preview release 2.0 / June 2, 2014; 37 days ago (2014-06-02)
Development status Active
Operating system OS X 10.8
License Proprietary
Website apple.com/game-center/

Game Center is an online multiplayer social gaming network released by Apple Inc.[5][6] It allows users to invite friends to play a game, start a multiplayer game through matchmaking, track their achievements, and compare their high scores on a leader board.[5] Game Center was originally announced on April 8, 2010, and became publicly available with the release of iOS 4.1 on September 8, and in November, became available in iOS 4.2 for iPad. The service underwent a major update in October 2011, for iOS 5, including support for turn-based matches.

On February 16, 2012, it was announced by Apple that Game Center would be integrated into the latest version of OS X, Mountain Lion, set for a July 25, 2012 release.[7] Some games can now share multiplayer functionality between the Mac and iOS versions of the app.[citation needed]

Game Center can be implemented by developers in iOS 4.1 or later through the GameKit framework, located in the Cocoa Touch framework set.

History[edit]

Game Center on OS X Mountain Lion

Gaming became a major part of the iOS platform when Apple launched the App Store on July 10, 2008.[8] Unlike the console systems that were currently on the market, Apple had no unified multiplayer and social system for their platform. This gap was soon filled by third parties, such as, OpenFeint, Plus+, AGON Online and Scoreloop. These third parties had control over the online gaming environment and with multiple third parties involved, it left a non-unified experience.

Game Center was announced during an iOS 4 preview event hosted by Apple on April 8, 2010. A preview was released to registered Apple developers in August.[5] It was released on September 8, 2010 with iOS 4.1 on iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and iPod Touch 2nd generation through 4th generation, and is included with iOS 4.2 on the iPad.[9]

An updated version of Game Center was released with iOS 5 that featured the addition of turn based gaming, player photos, friend suggestions, and achievement points.[10] The latest update featured in iOS 6 released with the iPhone 5, is an advanced version of Game Center. With selected Game Center games, Game Center runs in the background, ensuring that the player is connected to Game Center, prompting them at multiple times and even after repeated attempts to disable it.

Features[edit]

From within Game Center, players can connect with friends, send friend requests, start playing games and organize online multiplayer games. The number of friends that can be connected to a single Game Center account is limited to 500. Some games may feature achievements, where for completing a certain task, the player is rewarded points. Depending on the game, a leader-board may be present where a player can compare his or her score with friends or the world.[11]

Many iOS games use Game Center, but not all of them use every feature. Apps can choose to include any or all of the following features supported by Game Center:

  • Leader-boards – compares scores with the player's friends and with other players from around the world
  • Achievements – shows goals that can be accomplished by the player and also allows the player to compare with friends' achievements
  • Multiplayer – the game can host matches in real time, either between the player's friends or by "auto-matching" with random players from around the world

User information[edit]

A Game Center player profile on iOS 7

Nickname[edit]

A nickname (or alias) is the player's username on Game Center. Nicknames are limited to 30 characters. They must be unique, but are allowed to be changed by the player in account settings at any time.[12][13] A nickname can be used as a search term for a player when another player is performing a Game Center friend search.

Apple ID[edit]

Main article: Apple ID

A player must establish an Apple ID to associate with a Game Center nickname. A player has the option to create an Apple ID from within Game Center if he or she does not already have one. Only one nickname may be associated with an Apple ID at any given time.

Points[edit]

Points are awarded to players as a part of Game Center's achievement tracking system. Players can earn points by meeting specific in-game challenges. Players cannot use the point for anything other than to rate progress in games. It was developed so players can solilize and compete against each other.

Profile[edit]

Each player is assigned a profile in Game Center. A profile consists of the player's nickname, the number of Game Center-compatible games the player owns, the number of friends the player has, the number of achievement points a player has, and an optional photo (iOS 5 or later) and player-defined status.

Supported devices[edit]

The devices that can run Game Center are iPod Touch 2nd generation and later (iOS 4.1 required); iPhone 3GS and later (iOS 4.1 required); all models of the iPad (iOS 4.2 required); and all Mac computers running OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion.[11]

There is no support for the iPhone 3G and original iPhone. However, Game Center is unofficially available on the iPhone 3G via jailbreaking.[14] OS X Mountain Lion added support for Game Center on Mac computers.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "iOS 7.1.1". Apple. 2014-04-22. Retrieved 2014-05-01. 
  2. ^ "About Apple TV (2nd and 3rd generation) software updates". Apple. 2014-04-22. Retrieved 2014-05-01. 
  3. ^ "Inside Mobile Apps · Apple's Game Center Gets Update, Has 67 Million Total Accounts to Date". Inside Mobile Apps. Retrieved October 22, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Game Center has 67 million users, news, Game Center, PocketGamer.biz". PocketGamer.biz. Retrieved October 22, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c "What's New in iOS 4". Apple Inc. Retrieved June 14, 2010. 
  6. ^ Brett Molina (September 1, 2010). "Apple's Game Center debuts next week". USA Today. Retrieved September 1, 2010. 
  7. ^ Apple - OS X Mountain Lion
  8. ^ "Apple Introduces the New iPhone 3G". Apple Inc. June 9, 2008. Retrieved May 1, 2011. 
  9. ^ Holt, Chris. "iOS 4.1's GameCenter to Hit iPhone Next Week". Macworld. Retrieved September 1, 2010. 
  10. ^ Holt, Chris (October 4, 2011). "Apple Upgrades Game Center in iOS 5 Update". PC World. Retrieved December 21, 2011. 
  11. ^ a b "Game Center". Apple Inc. Retrieved May 1, 2011. 
  12. ^ Jordan, Jon (September 9, 2010). "How to use Apple's Game Center". Pocket Gamer. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  13. ^ "iOS: Using Game Center". Apple. October 25, 2011. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  14. ^ Waisybabu (September 25, 2010). "Game Center and HDR Photos Enabler Arrives in Cydia for iPhone 3g and 3gs Running iOS 4.1". Redmond Pie. Retrieved May 1, 2011. 

External links[edit]