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Upcoming Roadmap: 2018 Q4 (Oct – Dec) Edition

Cross-posted from the blog here.

We’re happy to announce the second of our quarterly PlayFab roadmap updates. We heard lots of good feedback that you enjoy receiving this visibility into our development process. As always, we want to hear your feedback – you can post in the Feedback Requests section of our forums.

Update from Q3

Following one of our core values of transparency, we want to first share an update on the features we planned to ship last quarter, before giving details into our plans for next quarter. You can check back to our Q3 roadmap blog post for more context on any of these:

  • Multiplayer Servers upgrade. This upgrade to our multiplayer server hosting feature is now in private preview; it will go into public preview in early December. To learn more, or to apply for the private preview, read our introductory blog post.
  • New matchmaking technology. Our new matchmaking technology, based on Xbox Live SmartMatch, is now in private preview. To learn more or apply for the private preview, read this blog post. We plan on releasing the feature more broadly before the end of this year.
  • Economy upgrade. Our work to upgrade the existing PlayFab commerce system continues, but is not yet ready for release. We plan on releasing updates to key features by December, followed by additional updates early next year.
  • PlayFab Data Warehouse. We’re very close to opening up our new data warehouse feature for private preview; look for a blog post by the end of October.
  • New KPI and LiveOps Dashboards. We launched a new metric – player session time – and a new trends explorer. We’ve also started capturing a richer set of device information, such as OS version, memory, platform, and more.
  • Two-way connectivity (aka PubSub). This feature has been postponed until later in Q4.
  • Configuration management. This feature is in testing, and will be released in November.
  • Open ID connect. This feature is in testing and will be released in November.
  • Facebook Instant Games. This feature is done; you may configure it via the list of add-ons, and the relevant set of APIs have been added to the client API. Blog post announcing the feature is coming soon.
  • New site for PlayFab documentation. This work is in progress; we are moving docs over now and will be opening the site to the public mid-Q4.
  • Localization. Localized email templates are now available (see also our tutorial on setting a player’s default language). Game Manager localization is in testing and will be released before the end of October.

Upcoming Q4 features

You tell us how to make PlayFab better, and we’re listening. This quarter we’re tackling our feature request forum, and crossing off some of the most frequently requested features. These include:

  • Secure Game Center authentication. Authenticate players on iOS devices using their GameCenter credentials in a secure way (#2 in the forum).
  • Revoke older Cloud Script revision. Older revisions of CloudScript cluttering up your title? Get rid of them (#3 in the forum).
  • Leaderboard upgrade. We’re making a major upgrade to leaderboards, crossing off several commonly requested features. We’re boosting performance, adding support for leaderboard buckets, supporting additional metadata per statistic, allowing you to delete unneeded player statistics, supporting ascending and descending sort order, and applying statistics to the new entity system to enable group (guild) and character leaderboards. (#5, #6, #13, #18, #26 in the forum).
  • Search for an entity group by name. Basic guild support was added earlier this year, and now we’re adding the ability to search for a guild to join by name.
  • Visual Studio App Center Integration. App Center provides a rich set of tools to help you ship your game faster by automating the build, test, and deploy processes. We will be integrating crash analytics data from App Center into PlayFab, including the mapping of crash data directly to individual players.
  • User Generated Content (UGC). As part of upgrading to the Minecraft commerce system, we will be integrating Minecraft’s User Generated Content system into PlayFab as well. Using this technology, you can enable players to upload content to your game (e.g., skins, levels, mods), then allow other players to purchase and/or download the content for themselves. This feature will include payouts to creators, and an approval workflow system. These features will enter preview in December.
  • Benchmarks. To help compare your game’s performance to other games, we will shortly be releasing an analytics benchmarks feature which shows how your game’s KPIs compare to an average across all games in the PlayFab system. Later we will enhance this feature so you can narrow the comparison to a particular genre of game.

As always, while these updates reflect our aspirations for upcoming features, please remember that these features and timelines and subject to change without additional notice. If there are additional features you’d like to see added to our roadmap in the future, please vote on or add to the Feature Requests section of our forums.

CloudScriptLeaderboards and StatisticsdataCustom Game ServersMatchmaking
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AndyMc contributed to this article