April 16, 2014
The world of gaming can be unpredictable. It can be hard to judge if a game is going to be the next Angry Birds and experience exponential, global growth. Riak is designed to help gaming platforms handle this uncertainty with ease. Its focus on high availability means that all data remains accessibility, even during node failure. Its flexible data model and redundant, fault-tolerant design easily allows gaming platforms to store any type of data needed. Riak is also built for operational simplicity at scale, so Riak will seamlessly grow with data and popularity. Finally, the option for multi-datacenter replication means that gamers all over the world will get the same low-latency experience across multiple devices.
Top Use Cases for Riak in Gaming
- Player Data: Riak provides low-latency, highly available data storage for key player data, including user and profile information, game performance, statistics and rankings, and more. Riak also provides many different tools for querying and indexing this data, such as Riak Search, Secondary Indexing, and MapReduce.
- Session Storage: Riak is frequently used to store and serve session data with predictable low-latency – necessary for game play. Riak imposes no restrictions on the type of content stored (since all objects are stored on disk as binaries), so session data can be encoded in many ways and can evolve without administrative changes to schemas.
- Social Information: Riak provides flexible, robust storage for social data such as social graph information, player profiles and relationships, and social authentication tokens.
- Global Data Locality: When gaming, players require a low-latency experience, regardless of where they’re physically located. Otherwise, interrupted or slow game play can lead to poor user experience and possible user abandonment. Riak Enterprise’s multi-datacenter capabilities allow game data to be physically close to players and serve them data no matter where they happen to be.
Riak in Production
Riak is already in production by many top gaming platforms. Here’s a look at a few that have switched to Riak.
Rovio is the creator of the popular mobile game, Angry Birds. Since user growth can be hard to predict, they needed an infrastructure that could support unexpected viral growth without failing or causing downtime. They selected Riak due to its ease-of-scale and fault tolerance. Riak now powers their new cartoon series, Angry Birds Toons, and new mobile games. Learn more about why they moved to Riak in this case study and video from GDC.
Hibernum is a creator and developer of unique gaming experiences that combine the latest in social gaming, top quality visuals and animations, and cutting edge design. They switched from a relational database to Riak due to the high availability, ability to scale to peak loads, and predictable operational cost. Riak is used to store user game information for one of their most popular social games. Check out the complete case study, Hibernum Selects Riak for User Data Storage.
Kiip is a platform for building rewards and achievements into your games. Kiip replaced MongoDB with Riak in order to achieve low read/write latencies and horizontal scalability. Kiip uses Riak for storing and serving session and device data. Learn more from the video on scaling Riak to 25MM Ops/Day.
Riot Games is the creator of League of Legends and faced some challenges with supporting millions of concurrent players at any given moment. They switched to Riak from MySQL for their next generation stats system, which tracks gameplay statistics and stores terabytes of data that gets aggregated and presented to players in near real-time. More information on how they use Riak and why they selected it can be found here.
Data Modeling in Riak
Riak has a “schemaless” design. Objects are comprised of key/value pairs, which are stored in flat namespaces called buckets. Here are some common approaches to structuring gaming data with Riak’s key/value design:
|Player Data||Login, Email, UUID||Player Attributes (often stored as a JSON document); Player Rewards and Stats|
|Social Data||Login, Email, UUID||Player Profiles, Social Graph Information, Facebook/Twitter Tokens|
|Session Information||User/Session ID||Session Data|
|Image or Video Content||Content Name, ID or Integer||.JPG .PNG, .GIF or other image format; .MOV, .MPG, .MP4 or other video file format|
To learn more about how gaming platforms can use Riak for their data needs, check out the complete overview, “Gaming on Riak: A Technical Introduction.” To get started with Riak, Contact Us or download it now.
March 17, 2014
This week is the Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco. GDC is the largest, professionals-only game industry events and brings together programmers, artists, producers, game designers, audio professionals, business decision-makers, and more to exchange ideas and shape the future of the industry. Basho is a proud sponsor of GDC and this is our second year speaking and exhibiting at the event.
On Thursday, March 20th, join us for the session, “Riak for Games,” presented by Quark Games and Basho. The talk will be about database choices, mistakes, successes, and lessons learned by the presenters: Eric Liaw and Seth Thomas. Eric, Co-Founder at Quark Games, will give insight from five years of mobile game development. Seth, Technical Evangelist at Basho Technologies, will give insight from his time at Vigil and SOE, as well as success stories from current Riak customers. Their talk will be at 11:30am in Room 3020, West Hall.
In addition to this session, Basho will also be exhibiting. Be sure and stop by our booth to talk Riak and pick up some great swag.
Riak is an ideal solution for many gaming use cases, including storing session data, player stats, and user profile information. For more information on how companies like Rovio, Riot Games, Hibernum, and Mochi Media use Riak, check out our Riak Users Page. To learn more about why Riak is a fit for gaming, download our whitepaper, “Riak on Gaming.”
July 1, 2013
GameLab2013 is Barcelona’s Videogame and Interactive Entertainment International Conference. It brings together creators, managers, and visionaries from across the industry to discuss current challenges and trends that will guide the future of digital entertainment. Some key topics include emerging gaming markets, new distribution platforms, shifting business models, and the evolution of social and mobile games.
This year, Tom Santero, Technical Evangelist at Basho, was invited to speak about how Riak fits into the evolving gaming industry. His talk, “Riak: Distributed Storage for Games You Don’t Have to Worry About,” describes how video games have changed over the years and how supporting massive global scale is now the norm for many gaming companies. He then describes how Riak can be a perfect fit for many gaming applications as it is designed for linear scalability, fault tolerance, high write throughput, low latency, and high availability. He also discusses how some gaming companies, such as Rovio and Hibernum, are currently using Riak to support their multi-platform applications. You can view his entire slide deck below:
To learn more about how Riak can be used for gaming platforms and applications, check out our Gaming Resources Page.
June 6, 2013
For gaming platforms and applications, Riak can be the ideal data solution. Its scalability allows for rapid growth of player data, the low-latency design allows for a fast and reliable experience for players all over the world, and its flexible data model means there are no restrictions on content type and no need to change the underlying schema.
To see if Riak is a fit for your gaming use case, we have put together a number of resources that showcase how Riak is solving gaming data challenges across multiple companies. Below are some highlights:
- For a general overview of how Riak can be used for gaming companies, download our whitepaper, “Gaming on Riak.”
- For Hibernum, a social gaming developer, we have a case study on how they’re using Riak to store user game information.
- Rovio, the creators of Angry Birds, has a video that discusses how Riak supports their new mobile gaming platform.
- Kiip, a mobile app rewards network, has a talk about their process of choosing Riak and their experience scaling it. They also go into more detail on their blog.
- Mochi Media uses Riak to store social graph data for Mochi Social and MochiGames.
- On our blog, there are posts on the advantages of Riak for gaming and how to build gaming applications with Riak.
For a complete list of resources, visit our Resources Page.
March 25, 2013
We have a few new pages on our site to help you start building retail, advertising, mobile, or gaming apps and services on Riak. On each of these pages, you will find industry use cases for Riak, relevant case studies from companies already using it in production, and information on Riak’s key/value model and querying features. Here’s a quick overview:
Riak lets retailers provide always-on, highly scalable eCommerce and mobile services. Retail use cases for Riak include:
- Shopping carts
- Product catalogs
- Mobile applications/sites
Advertisers need to serve data reliably and quickly. Common ways advertisers leverage Riak include:
- Serving ad content
- Session storage
- Mobile experiences
Riak provides the scalable, small object storage required by mobile applications and platforms. Riak can be used for many different mobile needs, including:
- User and session data storage
- Text and multimedia storage
- Social authentication
Gaming platforms and applications benefit from Riak’s scale-out, low-latency design, and flexible storage capabilities. Some common use cases include:
- Player data
- Session data
- Social information
- Gaming assets
March 12, 2013
Riak provides low-latency, highly available storage to power gaming platforms and applications. Gaming companies use Riak to store player and game data, session and social information, and a variety of gaming content and events. This post offers a quick look at the advantages of Riak and some user case studies. Later this week, we’ll publish an in-depth look at the common gaming use cases and examples of data modeling.
For a complete overview, download the whitepaper, “Gaming on Riak: A Technical Introduction.”
Advantages of Riak
- Support for Rapid Growth: Built for operational ease-of-use, Riak yields a near-linear performance and throughput increase as capacity is added.
- Low-Latency Design: Riak is designed to store data and serve requests predictably and quickly, even during peak times.
- Flexible, Reliable Storage: Riak has a flexible data model with redundancy built-in, and a number of mechanisms to maintain availability even in the event of node failure or network partition. Riak is content-agnostic, providing flexibility for document, image, video, and other storage.
- Multi-Datacenter Replication: Riak Enterprise’s multi-datacenter replication provides disaster recovery and data locality.
Hibernum is a creator and developer of unique gaming experiences that combine the latest in social gaming, top quality visuals and animations, and cutting edge design. They switched from a relational database to Riak due to its high availability, ability to scale to peak loads, and predictable operational cost. Riak is used to store user game information for one of their most popular social games. For more information about how Hibernum uses Riak, check out the complete case study.
Kiip is a platform that lets brands provide rewards to mobile gamers for in-game achievements. Kiip replaced MongoDB with Riak in order to achieve low read/write latencies and horizontal scalability. Kiip uses Riak for session and device data. To learn more about Kiip’s experience selecting Riak, check out this video by two of their engineers.
To learn more about how your gaming platform can benefit from Riak, download “Gaming on Riak: A Technical Introduction.” For more information about Riak, sign up for out webcast on Thursday, March 14.
February 19, 2013
Hibernum is a creator and developer of unique gaming experiences that combine the latest in social gaming, top quality visuals and animations, and cutting edge design. They use Riak to store user game information for one of their most popular social games.
Currently, Hibernum’s Riak installation serves thousands of requests per second to more than a million monthly active users. User data is stored in Riak as JSON objects, and Hibernum uses Riak’s HTTP interface, a perfect fit for their Node.js-based application server. As the game grows in popularity, millions of new entries are generated and stored in Riak, as well as any updates or modifications that may occur during gameplay. Mario Lefebvre, IT Specialist at Hibernum, has said that Riak is “managing this load like a charm and is a stable and rock solid solution.”
Originally, Hibernum was using a relational database, however, they found the manual sharding required to scale was operationally intensive and inefficient. They needed something that could better handle their significant growth and started looking for a cost-efficient solution that could support the large amount of requests, as well as a solution that allowed for easy scalability. After testing multiple solutions, Riak was chosen for its high availability, ability to scale to peak loads, and predictable operational cost.
To learn more about how Hibernum uses Riak, check out the complete case study.