Dear Igames 2020 Community,

This is about some technical changes to igames required to bring it back online that you should be aware of as it will have some visible differences at times from the way it used to work.

Internet connection problems at your homes are still going to happen. For instance I live 10 miles from nowhere now down a two lane country road and while I have Time/Warner cable TV and internet service it isn't nearly as reliable as when I lived in a city. I experience temporary dropouts in the internet that may last from a few seconds to a few hours. I might go a week without seeing a single hiccup or I might have a temporary dropout happen every 5 minutes for an entire week. I'm not alone. Lately, with the heatwave here in Texas, they've been worse and they're worse at night when everyone is home from work and starts using the single wire running down the length of the road to surf the web, watch movies on demand, and stuff like that.

The changes we had to make to igames to work with wireless internet routers that a great many of you now have in your homes changes what you'll see when these problems happen.

In the past when you entered a game you could close the lobby and the games would continue working. That's no longer the case. The games used to communicate directly with each other bypassing the lobby and the igames server. Router firewalls block such direct communication for security purposes and it's impractical for most people to dig into the guts of their routers to unblock it. So we had to route the game communications through the lobby which then goes through the igames server and then through the reverse path out to the other player(s). Router firewalls don't block that because the igames server is a trusted carrier much like your postman is trusted to deliver your mail without tampering.

What you'll see now when internet connection is lost more than about 30 seconds is a message box popping up in the lobby saying the connection to the server was lost. If you're playing a game when this happens the games don't know about it and will just reach a point where they're all waiting for the disconnected game to do something. The point at which they all stop can look quite different depending on what particular message was the last one received. It can also be complicated by which direction a particular lost message was heading and sometimes messages can be sent but not received or vice versa.

If the interruption is brief enough you'll just see the game play halt at some point and then resume before 30 seconds have elapsed.

In general the other players without connection problems will be able to continue chatting with each other through the game chat box. The disconnected player can type in chat messages and they appear to be sent but he doesn't see any messages coming back.

Problems like this happen in four player games more frequently than two player due to the simple fact that more players multiplies the odds one of them might experience a network problem.

So before sending in any bug reports about the games please try to determine if one of the players lost his internet connection because that can appear in many odd ways. The best way to determine if someone dropped out is for the remaining players to try chatting with each other. If you're not seeing a reply from one player in particular you can safely presume it was a lost server connection and there's not much we can do to fix those except tell you to call your internet service provider and tell them you're experiencing dropouts in internet connections.

Kind regards,

Dave

Software Developer and Bottle Washer
Igames 2020

P.S. I also wanted to say that while we could, in principle, get around these connection problems in order to do so we'd have to become just another boring clone of Yahoo games that you access through Internet Explorer or Firefox. The things we are able to do by providing you with custom developed downloaded software that connects to a paired custom developed server is what makes it possible to deliver a unique set of features for the friendly, safe community that is igames.


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Igames 2020 Multiplayer Gaming Community.  Online gaming site with numerous classic card and board games including Hearts, Spades, Cribbage, Gin Rummy, Euchre, Pinochle, and Backgammon. Formerly known as Igames, Gamelobby, CNBGames and cardandboardgames.