US20060025221A1 - Networked gaming systems and methods - Google Patents

Networked gaming systems and methods Download PDF

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US20060025221A1
US20060025221A1 US11/154,683 US15468305A US2006025221A1 US 20060025221 A1 US20060025221 A1 US 20060025221A1 US 15468305 A US15468305 A US 15468305A US 2006025221 A1 US2006025221 A1 US 2006025221A1
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game
jackpot
player
networked
players
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US11/154,683
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Nitin Jain
Rohan Sahu
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Jain Nitin D
Rohan Sahu
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Priority to US11/154,683 priority patent/US20060025221A1/en
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3202Hardware aspects of a gaming system, e.g. components, construction, architecture thereof
    • G07F17/3223Architectural aspects of a gaming system, e.g. internal configuration, master/slave, wireless communication
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3244Payment aspects of a gaming system, e.g. payment schemes, setting payout ratio, bonus or consolation prizes
    • G07F17/3258Cumulative reward schemes, e.g. jackpots
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3286Type of games
    • G07F17/3293Card games, e.g. poker, canasta, black jack

Abstract

A novel networked game, such as poker, having one or more jackpots, includes a lobby screen display from which a player can request to be seated at one or more of a plurality of virtual game tables which are identified as jackpot game tables. Playing cards are electronically dealt to players at the jackpot game tables from an electronic game deck, thereby forming player hands. A dynamic game table screen display presented to each player includes a representation of a game table and players, and, at one or more times: a representation of the playing cards forming the player's hand, an indication of a fee to be collected from a pot containing amounts wagered by players for funding a jackpot, a jackpot counter for indicating the cumulative funds in the jackpot, and a message identifying one or more players at the table who have won funds from the jackpot, and the amounts which they have won.

Description

  • This application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/592,774, filed on Jul. 30, 2004.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • 1. Field of the Invention
  • The present invention is directed to a networked game, such as poker, having one or more jackpots.
  • 2. Description of the Related Art
  • Poker is a community card game. There are multiple variants of poker, with the popular games being Texas hold'em, Omaha hi, Omaha hi-lo, seven card stud and seven card stud hi-lo.
  • Cards are dealt to players and the objective is to make the best possible hand of five cards from the cards they are allowed to use (depending on the game being played) To know if one hand beats another hand, the hands are compared against a ranking system used commonly in nearly all poker games. (view Appendix 1 for hand rankings)
  • The objective is to win money in the pot by having the winning hand(s). The pot is the money or chips wagered by all players during a hand of poker. The pot is awarded to the winner(s) of a hand. The House charges a fee called the rake, for facilitating the games. In one embodiment of the electronic poker system described herein, the rake optionally depends or is selected based on one or more of the number of players at the electronic or virtual table, limits and the size of the pot.
  • A jackpot is a prize pool awarded to one or more lucky players based on certain qualifying conditions. The jackpot may be funded by players when they play on certain classified tables and contribute a small percentage of the wagered amount towards the jackpot or just money put in by the House or a combination of the two. There can be different kinds of jackpots in poker including Bad Beat jackpot, High Hand jackpot and “Match the Hand”, though other types of jackpots can be used as well.
  • A number of problems were encountered when attempting to add a jackpot system to an existing networked poker game.
  • For example, the game servers were considering the jackpot table as a normal ring game table but, in reality they were different from live games and players also treated them differently. If a player was on the wait list via a jackpot table, he was being offered normal live game tables also.
  • Another problem occurs when attempting to broadcast messages upon a jackpot hit. On a jackpot hit, the game table should freeze for a few seconds when the jackpot is hit and win messages are being displayed. In contrast, the normal server behavior is the game close command, which initiates the start of the next game.
  • Yet another problem is finding space for jackpot counter images in the existing client lobby and game table screens.
  • BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • A novel networked game, having one or more prize funds comprises a lobby screen display from which a player can request to be seated at one or more of a plurality of virtual game positions which are identified as prize fund game positions. A dynamic game position screen display presented to each player includes a representation of a game position and at least one player, and, at one or more times: a representation of said player's game status, and an indication of a fee to be collected from amounts contributed by players for funding a prize fund, a counter for indicating the cumulative funds in said prize fund, and a message identifying one or more players who have won funds from said prize fund, and the amounts which they have won.
  • In accordance with another aspect of the invention, a networked gaming system having one or more prize funds comprises of at least one game server and a game client application by which a player connects to the server. At least one prize fund game position is hosted on said game server, which holds prize fund qualification logic and checks every game after completion to evaluate if the game qualifies for a prize fund. A game server controller application manages a life cycle of one or more game positions, and a database stores information to be utilized by the system. Changes made through the admin reports are automatically updated on game server controller.
  • In accordance with another aspect of the invention, a networked game, having one or more prize funds comprises means for providing a lobby screen display from which a player can request to be seated at one or more of a plurality of virtual game positions, at least some of which are identified as prize fund game positions, and means for admitting one or more players to one of said positions, comprising means for differentiating between prize fund game positions and other game positions for purposes of creating a wait list, and means for creating one wait list for the prize fund game positions and one wait list for the other game positions.
  • In accordance with another aspect of the invention, a method of conducting a networked game, such as poker, having one or more jackpots comprises
    • providing a lobby screen display from which a player can request seat at one or more of a plurality of virtual game tables which are identified as jackpot game tables; presenting to each player a dynamic game table screen display including a representation of a game table and players, and, at one or more times:
    • a representation of the game status of said player, an indication of a fee to be collected from a pot containing amounts wagered by players for funding a jackpot, a jackpot counter for indicating the cumulative funds in said jackpot, and
    • a message identifying one or more players at said table who have won funds from said jackpot, and the amounts which they have won.
  • These and other features and advantages are evident from the following description of the present invention, with reference to the accompanying drawings.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 is a flow chart showing the operation of one embodiment of the invention;
  • FIG. 2 is a diagram showing the system architecture of one embodiment of the invention;
  • FIG. 3 is a screen shot showing a main lobby of a networked poker system, as viewed by a prospective player;
  • FIG. 4 is a screen shot showing a welcome message superimposed on a bad beat game table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a prospective player;
  • FIG. 5 is a screen shot showing a bad beat game table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a player;
  • FIG. 6 is a screen shot showing real time jackpot contribution collection at a bad beat game table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a prospective player;
  • FIG. 7 is a screen shot showing a jackpot winner message with win amount at a bad beat game table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a player;
  • FIG. 8 is a screen shot showing a jackpot hand winner message with win amount at a bad beat game table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a player;
  • FIG. 9 is a screen shot showing jackpot hand participants message with win amount at a bad beat game table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a player;
  • FIG. 10 is a screen shot showing an all game table with a dealer chat message to all players on the site with information of the jackpot hit at a jackpot bad beat table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a player, and
  • FIG. 11 is a screen shot showing a pop-up message to all players on the site with information of the jackpot hit at a bad beat game table of a networked poker system, as viewed by a player;
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION
  • The invention may facilitate the incorporation any of a number of jackpot formats in a networked (including internet or “online”) game, including the following: Referring to FIG. 1, a flow chart illustrates the general sequence of one embodiment of the invention, a networked poker game, from a player's point of view. At a “lobby” screen (FIG. 1) screening (see FIG. 3) the prospective player selects a “bad beat jackpot” button to bring up a listing of available jackpots, as indicated at 10. Upon being seated at a playing position or virtual table 14 players are dealt a hand, as shown at 12. The hand is then played by the seated players at the table 14. Upon completion of the hand, a jackpot qualification decision process takes place as indicated at 16. This qualification process may proceed generally as follows.
  • Firstly, a plurality of players, which, in one embodiment may be four or more players, are dealt into the hand 18. Next, a rake is collected from the hand 20. A jackpot contribution is also collected from the pot established in hand 22. The hand is completed, that is until a showdown, as indicated at 24. Finally, one of the players has a jackpot qualifying hand, which in the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, is a “bad beat” qualifying hand, as defined below. This player loses the hand, as indicated at 26. If the hand meets all of the foregoing conditions, as indicated by the yes following each condition in FIG. 1, the hand qualifies for the bad beat jackpot 27. The jackpot is distributed among the players according to a predetermined distribution scheme or rule, as indicated at 28. Thereupon, the next hand may be dealt to the players as shown at 29.
  • As also indicated in FIG. 1, if any one of the conditions 18, 20, 22, 24 or 26 is not met, as indicated by the no decision choice, the hand does not qualify for the bad beat jackpot 25 and play proceeds to the next hand at 29.
  • High Hand Jackpot
  • In this jackpot format, the house announces a time period (such as a period bounded by dates and times, or a period occurring within a specified amount of time after a start time) and the player getting the highest hand during the specified period wins the jackpot amount. The amount can be contributed by the house or by the players. When the jackpot is contributed by the players, a percentage (which can be a large or small percentage) of the wagered amount is collected to fund the jackpot amount.
  • Example—The house announces that the player with the highest hand between 9 PM EST to 12 AM EST will win a $1000 high hand jackpot amount. The jackpot amount will be funded by the house and awarded to the player with the highest hand.
  • Match the Hand Jackpot
  • In this jackpot format, a particular hand combination is selected by the house and published. The player getting the specified hand combination first wins the Match the Hand jackpot. The house can also state hands dealt during a time period of the day will be considered for this jackpot. Here again, the jackpot can be funded by the house or by the players.
  • Example—House decides and publishes the Match the Hand combination as spades flush with 10 as the high card during the time period 2AM -5 AM EST. When a player gets the published hand the Match the hand jackpot is hit and the house awards him the jackpot amount. There are 2 options here, the house can award the 1st player getting the Lucky Hand or all the players during the specified period.
  • Bad Beat
  • In the game of poker—If a player loses a hand with cards with which one would normally expect to win the hand (high probability of winning), to another player who has even better cards then the player is said to have taken a “Bad Beat”. E.g., if a player has four 10's , the probability of someone else having a better hand is less than 0.002% and the person therefore thinks that he or she is highly likely to win the hand. If that player is beaten by another player with better cards (for example, a player with a straight flush), the player that loses the hand with four 10's is said to have taken a ‘Bad Beat’.
  • The Bad Beat jackpot system has been designed to optionally reward those players who take a ‘Bad Beat’. The computerized jackpot system continuously and automatically evaluates each hand based on each individual player's rank of cards and checks them against the qualifying rules (which can be retrieved from a database or other data store) for the bad beat jackpot. For example, if there is a hand where a very high rank card has lost to an even higher rank card—'Bad Beat, it evaluates the hand against the qualifying criteria for bad beat jackpot and decides on whether the jackpot should be ‘awarded’ or not.
  • In case the system decides that it is a ‘hit’, it performs the corresponding calculations and accordingly divides the specified cumulative amount among the players involved in that hand.
  • The Jackpot System
  • This jackpot system (the name used to refer to an example of a networked poker system described herein) has been developed for use in networked multiplayer poker games. One or more electronic or virtual tables (see e.g., FIG. 3) are specified as jackpot tables. To participate in the jackpot, the player should be playing at a jackpot table when the jackpot is “hit”. On the jackpot tables, an extra amount is taken from every hand played besides the rake collected. These tables have a ‘Jackpot Counter’ 62 (see FIG. 5) displayed on the game table screen (e.g., FIG. 5). The extra collections made from these tables are added to a jackpot pool and the counter 20 increments each time there is an addition. Bets, including the rake and jackpot contributions, are charged against the betting user's account.
  • In particular, the system automatically collects a contribution from the participating players while they are playing on the jackpot tables. The jackpot contribution is optionally a fixed amount that the players pay on each hand. The contribution optionally occurs the moment a rake is taken from the pot (see e.g., FIG. 6). For example, the fixed amount can be 5 cents, 25 cents, 50 cents, 1 dollar, 5 dollars, or other amount per hand. Different sets of networked poker tables can have different contribution amounts. For example, electronic tables 1-5 can have a 25 cent/hand contribution, while electronic tables 6-10 can have a 1 dollar/hand contribution, and so on. The system optionally specifies or utilizes different contribution amounts for different kinds of jackpots. The amount that is to be contributed can be stored in a corresponding database 35 (see FIG. 2), which can then be accessed as needed. The system can also keep track of and store in the database 35 or other data store the amounts actually contributed, as well as the jackpots paid out.
  • A main jackpot counter is also displayed on the client's main window. This counter also displays the cumulative jackpot value and gets incremented at the same time when the jackpot counter on the jackpot tables get updated. This process continues until a jackpot is ‘hit’. The window can also display the amount per hand that will be contributed to the jackpot for each table or groups of tables.
  • Once the jackpot is ‘hit’, this main amount is then divided among all players in the jackpot hand according to specified conditions—“Fund Distribution’. The division takes place in such a manner that there is optionally always some percentage of the jackpot amount carried forward to the next jackpot pool, which is then displayed in the counter on both lobby and at each of the jackpot tables. To provide service and support the house (i.e. game host/server/operator) optionally charges a service fee for running the jackpot. This fee comes out of the extra amount taken from hands played at jackpot tables.
  • Example Illustrative System Specific Conditions
  • Players who are playing in the jackpot tables are eligible to receive the jackpot amount. To be eligible, the person should also be playing on one of these tables when the jackpot is ‘hit’ and should be a part of the ‘jackpot hand’. The jackpots can be configured to ‘hit’ based on different events. Possible events may include a “bad beat”. Other occurrences may include situations known as “match the hand” in which case the jackpot will be ‘hit’ if a person playing at a jackpot table fulfills the other conditions of the jackpot and gets a pre-specified hand (e.g., a “Royal Flush”).
  • The jackpot system can also be used to give prizes to a specified percentage of the top hand winners in a pre-specified time period. The amounts taken from each pot towards the progressive jackpot is based, at least in part, on the stakes being played at the table.
  • Progressive Bad Beat Jackpot
  • In the exemplary embodiment, the bad beat jackpot system is progressive in nature. This adds the dynamics in accumulation of small amounts from the amount wagered by players in each hand played on special tables called ‘bad beat jackpot tables’. The contribution is taken from the ‘pot’ before it is distributed to the winners.
  • Hands played in normal non-jackpot tables do not contribute to the jackpot. This jackpot contribution keeps accumulating across all such tables that are located in the ‘Bad Beat Jackpot Section’ displayed in the client (which can be in the form of downloadable or otherwise loaded multiplayer poker software that executes on a player computer, such as a personal computer, personal digital assistant, intelligent phone, networked computer, etc.).
  • The accumulation process continues in real time until the system determines that a player currently playing at one of the bad beat jackpot tables faces a ‘bad beat’. At this point of time, the system designates the jackpot as being ‘hit’ (see e.g., FIGS. 7-9). The jackpot is then distributed to the players participating in that hand. The awarding of the bad beat jackpot pool is optionally performed in real time and the funds are added to the eligible players accounts or otherwise distributed to the players.
  • By way of illustration, the following rules, or a sub-combination thereof, may be applied for someone to qualify for the progressive “bad beat” jackpot:
      • Player must be seated in one of the many designated “High Hand” jackpot table.
      • Four or more players are participating in the hand (though other number of players can be specified).
      • The players are active participants in the hand, i.e., players sitting out do not qualify for the jackpot.
      • The losing hand contains four 10's or better in order to qualify.*
      • Both hole cards are used in the winner and the loser's hand and the hand goes till “the showdown”.
      • The hand is raked and jackpot contribution collected from the hand to qualify for a bad beat jackpot.
      • The qualifying hand stated above as four 10's or better can be varied.
    ILLUSTRATIVE EXAMPLES
  • The qualifying hand can be changed to any ‘four of a kind’. In this case, if a player with four 2's loses the hand to another player with four 8's. Then the players with four 2's is the bad beat jackpot winner and the player with four 8's the hand winner.
  • The qualifying hand can also be changed to full house. In this case, if a player with three 2's and two 8's (full house, 2's over 8's) lose the hand to another player with four 3's. Then the player with three 2's and two 8's (full house, 2's over 8's) is the bad beat jackpot winner and the player with four 3's is the hand winner.
  • EXAMPLES OF JACKPOT POOL DISTRIBUTION Example 1
  • By way of example, the following jackpot pool distribution formula might be used (wherein the formula or rules are stored and accessed from a database or other data store):
      • 20% (A) of the jackpot will be carried forward to the next jackpot.
      • House as a service charge will retain 10% (B).
      • 70% (C) will be distributed to the players.
  • One possible method for distributing this 70% might be the following: Of the distributed amount, 50% (X) will go to the loser of the hand—i.e., the person who “suffered” the ‘bad beat’, 25% (Y) to the winner and 25% (Z) will be split between the other seated players who actively participated in the hand.
  • Example 2
      • 25% (A) of the jackpot will be carried forward to the next jackpot.
      • House as a service charge will retain 10% (B).
      • 65% (C) will be distributed to the players.
  • One possible method for calculating this sum might be the following: Of the distributed amount to the players, 60% (X) will go to the loser of the hand—i.e., the person who “suffered” the ‘bad beat’, 20% (Y) to the winner and 20% (Z) will be split between the other seated players who actively participated in the hand.
  • In all cases, the sum of A+B+C will always be 100, and the value of X, Y and Z will be calculated from C. The sum of X, Y and Z in value terms will be equal to the value of C.
  • Progressive High Hand Jackpot
  • In the exemplary embodiment, the high hand jackpot system is progressive in nature. This adds the dynamics in accumulation of small amounts from the amount wagered by players in each hand played on special tables called ‘high hand jackpot tables’. The contribution is taken from the ‘pot’ before the pot is distributed to the winners.
  • Hands played in normal non-jackpot tables do not contribute to the jackpot. This jackpot contribution keeps accumulating across all such tables that are located in the ‘High Hand Jackpot Section’ displayed in the client (which can be in the form of downloadable or otherwise loaded Multiplayer Poker Software that executes on a player computer, such as a personal computer, personal digital assistant, intelligent phone, networked computer, etc.). The accumulation process continues in real time until the system determines that a player currently playing at one of the high hand jackpot tables has met all the conditions set out in the qualifications rules of high hand jackpot. At this point of time, the system designates the jackpot as being ‘hit’. The jackpot is then distributed to the players participating in that hand as per the “jackpot pool distribution rule”. The awarding of the high hand jackpot pool is optionally performed in real time and the funds are added to the eligible players' accounts or otherwise distributed to the players.
  • By way of illustration, the following rules, or a sub-combination thereof, may be applied for someone to qualify for the progressive “High Hand” jackpot:
      • Player must be seated in one of the many designated “High Hand” jackpot table.
      • Four or more players are participating in the hand (though another number of players can be specified).
      • The players are active participants in the hand, i.e., players sitting out do not qualify for the jackpot.
      • The winning hand contains Royal Flush in order to qualify.*
      • Both hole cards are used in the winner's hand and the hand must go to “a showdown”.
      • The hand is raked and jackpot contribution collected from the hand to qualify for a high hand jackpot.
      • The qualifying hand stated above as Royal Flush can be varied.
    Illustrative Examples
      • 1. The qualifying hand can be changed to any ‘four of a kind’. In this case, if a player with four 2's wins the hand then he qualifies for the high hand jackpot.
      • 2. The qualifying hand can also be changed to full house or better. In this case, if one player has three 2's and two 8's (full house, 2's over 8's) and another player has four 3's then the player with four 3's wins the hand and also the high hand jackpot. The player with the highest hand wins the high hand jackpot if 2 or more players meet the qualifying hand condition.
    Examples of Jackpot Pool Distribution
  • By way of example, the following jackpot pool distribution formula might be used (wherein the formula or rules are stored and accessed from a database or other data store):
  • Example 1
      • 20% (A) of the jackpot will be carried forward to the next jackpot.
      • House as a service charge will retain 10% (B).
      • 70% (C) will be distributed to the players. One possible method for calculating this sum might be the following: of the distributed amount, 70% (X) will go to the hand winner—i.e., the person who qualifies for the high hand with the highest hand combination, and 30% (Y) will be split between the other seated players who actively participated in the hand.
    Example 2
      • 25% (A) of the jackpot will be carried forward to the next jackpot.
      • House as a service charge will retain 10% (B).
      • 65% (C) will be distributed to the players. One possible method for calculating this sum might be the following: of the distributed amount to the players, 60% (X) will go to the hand winner—i.e., the person who has the highest hand and also meet the qualifying hand condition of the high hand jackpot, and 40% (Y) will be split between the other seated players who actively participated in the hand.
        The sum of A+B+C will always be 100.
        The value of X and Y will be calculated from C. The sum of X and Y in value terms will be equal to the value of C.
        Jackpot System Architecture
        Overview
  • Referring to FIG. 2, the jackpot feature of the system supports ‘m’ number of game tables to share ‘N’ number of different jackpots. There exist many-to-one relationships between the game tables and jackpots. In other words “m” number of game tables can share the same jackpot at the same point of time. The jackpot game tables are hosted in one or more jackpot game servers—potentially running in different machines. The distribution of jackpot game tables among different servers and the distribution of different jackpots among different jackpot game tables—are optionally mutually orthogonal.
  • Components
  • The player connects to the server, with the help of a client application 30 (referred as Game Client hence forth) sitting at his/her desktop or other terminal, such as a networked television, programmable digital assistant, smart phone, etc. (client terminal). The server 32 and client can be connected via a network, such as the Internet or a private network. The client directly or indirectly connects to a game server to sit and play for a jackpot game table. Following are a brief description of the example functionality of different components involved in the jackpot System.
  • The Jackpot Game Server
  • In this example embodiment, this is a server side Java application, which hosts multiple jackpot game tables concurrently. This server 32 also receives the connection requests from the Game Client 30, maintains the connection and ensures the communication between the Game Client and the jackpot game tables hosted in it. The server 32 directly or indirectly talks to the database 35 for purposes like: the state of the jackpot, the state of the game table, the account information of the player, etc.
  • A number of jackpot Game Server applications run simultaneously in potentially different server machines. These servers communicate directly or indirectly to the backend database 35. They communicate among each other—which is accomplished using different modes of inter process communication, such as, by way of example: remote procedure calls, messaging etc.
  • The Jackpot Server Controller (GSCT)
  • In the example embodiment, the intelligence of the system lies in the jackpot game server controller application 36. This acts as the manager of the life cycle of the jackpot game tables offered in the entire system at a given point of time. This application checks the loads on different jackpot game servers 32, 34, intelligently chooses one of them and asks that server to host a new jackpot game table as and when required. It also provides the information as to which jackpot a particular game table is to host. The jackpot game server controller 36 directly talks to the backend database 35 for accomplishing its task.
  • The Database (DB)
  • The database 35 stores (in persistent memory) the relevant information utilized by the jackpot system. The information stored by the database 35 can be classified into two types:
      • a) the configuration information (relatively static)
      • b) the runtime (dynamic) information
  • While two jackpot tables are hosted in two completely different servers, they can very well host the same jackpot. This feature has been successfully accomplished by providing the jackpot game tables the latest jackpot information at any point of time during their entire lifecycle. In an example, when a jackpot is hit at any of a server's game tables, the information is immediately updated in the database—also the same is communicated to the other jackpot game servers without any substantial delay. The jackpot related transactions are also stored in the database. These transactions include one or more of player jackpot contribution, jackpot payout per player and other required information for the bad beat jackpot. Refer to appendix 2 for the list of database tables created for the jackpot and the information stored in each table.
  • Functions Performed By Each of the Jackpot System Components
  • Game Table
  • The Game Table 38 holds the jackpot qualification logic and checks every hand after completion across the list of rules to evaluate if the hand qualifies for a jackpot. It also controls the rake collected from the pot of the hands played in the game table 38. It also controls the collection of jackpot contribution from the pot and updates counter values and jackpot status to jackpot manager after completion of every game.
  • When a jackpot is hit, the game table 38 broadcasts respective messages to all the players playing on that table. Game tables load changes in the jackpot properties/qualification condition on run time, which is specified in DB. This happens when any given condition is changed through the admin reports, example: changing messages, distribution percentage of the jackpot value, jackpot contribution amount to be collected or jackpot application stored in the game table 38 via reloadable java class-like qualifying hand condition, hole card usage condition, etc.
  • JP Game Server
  • The Game Server 32, 34 launches the jackpot game tables that are displayed in the client under designated tab name. In case of bad beat jackpot, the tables are launched under a bad beat jackpot tab 50 on the lobby (see FIG. 3). The server 32, 34 also manages the jackpot counter 54 displayed in the lobby and on the jackpot game tables and handles broadcasting of all jackpot messages to players on all the games tables hosted by the game server 32, 34.
  • Other Game Servers (not shown)
  • These servers launch tables other than jackpot game tables, and manage a jackpot counter updated by GSCT for display in the main counter in the lobby.
  • Game Server Controller (GSCT)
  • This controller 36 manages jackpot counter values and loads jackpot table in jackpot game servers on demand basis, which is based on the current capacity utilization of the existing jackpot tables. The GSCT also collects jackpot counter information from jackpot game servers and distributes latest information to all game servers includes jackpot servers and updates all jackpot changes made by admin reports to all game servers.
  • Jackpot Manager
  • The Jackpot Manager 40 collects jackpot counter value information from game tables and sends jackpot snapshot messages to the client lobby when a connection is established with the server. The snapshot messages include jackpot id, name, current jackpot value, expiry date etc. Incremental data is sent by the server to the client. The Jackpot Manager 40 also updates counter information to Game Server Controller 32, 34 on periodic basis, and updates to all other game servers about jackpot hit.
  • Admin Web Page (Report)
  • This page/report 42 is useful to create/delete/update jackpots. All changes made through the admin reports 42 are immediately updated on the Game Server Controller 36.
  • Play Game Servers
  • These servers 44 manage the real jackpot counter and are updated by the Game Server Controller 36 to update play clients.
  • Communication Between Various Jackpot Components
  • Jackpot Game Server—Real GSCT
  • The Game Server Controller 36 collects information from jackpot game servers 32, 34 and updates the jackpot counter information to all game servers including jackpot servers with the latest information. The information received for all the jackpot game servers 32, 34 is filtered by the game server controller 36 and the latest information is updated back to the game server. The Game Server Controller 36 also updates counter information to play game servers 44 every 30 seconds and to Jackpot Game Servers 32, 34 every 10 seconds. These intervals can be changed on a real time basis. The Game Server Controller GSCT 36 updates jackpot changes made by admin report 42 to all game servers.
  • Game Table—Jackpot Manager
  • Each Game Table 38 updates counter information to Jackpot Manager 40 after completion of every game, and updates the jackpot manager 40 for every jackpot hit. Each Game Table 38 also updates jackpot hit information to the Jackpot Manager 40, and the Jackpot Manager 40 updates. all other jackpot tables and other servers about this information.
  • Game—Data Base (DB)
  • Each Game Table 38 updates game details, jackpot contribution collected, normal game rake collected, player names in the game etc. Each Game Table 38 also updates jackpot hit time and updates ajackpot transaction log with win details. Each Game Table 36 gets messages from DB 35 and broadcasts them to respective player type.
  • Data base—Jackpot Manager
  • The Jackpot Manager 40 gets information from the DB 35 at startup time. Whenever there is an update, the Jackpot Manager 40 gets information from the DB 35.
  • Jackpot Manager—Admin Web page
  • Every jackpot update triggers jackpot manager 40 to load jackpot details from the DB 35.
  • Jackpot Manager—GSCT
  • On periodic basis the Jackpot Manager 40 updates a current jackpot counter to the GSCT 36, the GSCT 36 updates the latest jackpot counter information to the Jackpot Manager 40.
  • Admin Web page—Data base
  • The Admin Report 42 will create/delete/update jackpots updates in the DB 35 and enable display of the jackpot list or jackpot details from DB 35.
  • Summary of Changes Done in the System to Support the Jackpot Application
  • Items added include: Addition of jackpot condition checks method in Java Reloadable class. Addition of storing the jackpot eligibility condition in the game table. Addition of jackpot manager to manage/update the jackpot amount in the client via game servers. Addition of two new messages queue between Real Game Server Controller and play money game servers to send updated jackpot amounts (frequency every 30 seconds) and jackpot win popup message to play money players. Addition of a new Stored Procedure code, which is called on every game close to distributes the jackpot amount to all the eligible players if the hand qualifies for the jackpot prize. Another change is the creation of admin reports 42 for the creation, update and expiration of jackpots.
  • Problems Encountered When Developing the Jackpot System
  • Problem: The game servers were considering the jackpot table as a normal game table but, in reality they were different and players also treated them differently. If a player was on the wait list for a jackpot table, he was being offered other live game tables also.
  • Solution: We changed existing code to differentiate normal game tables and jackpot game tables only for the waitlist. With this we created two wait lists for the games, one for the jackpot tables and one for the live game tables.
  • Problem:
  • Broadcasting Messages on Jackpot Hit:
  • On jackpot hit, the game table should freeze for X seconds when the jackpot hit and win messages are being displayed. Normal behavior for the game close command to initiate the start of next game.
  • Solution: We introduced a new monitoring variable and changed code in such a way that the next hand does not start until the pop-up has been displayed on the client. This was implemented without disturbing the existing popup mechanism.
  • Finding Space for the Jackpot Counter Images in the Client Lobby and Game Table
  • Extensive changes were made in the client lobby and game table screens. Existing components were reorganized to create space. In the client lobby (see FIG. 3), the message box was split into two parts, one part was retained for the messages and the other part was used for displaying the total jackpot counter 54. On the game table (see FIG. 5), the locations of various components were changed and space was created for putting up the jackpot counter 62 on the game table. Logic was added to display the counter 62 only if it is a jackpot table and, depending on the jackpot type, to display the correct jackpot value for that jackpot type.
  • FIG. 3 shows the ‘Main Lobby’ page and the location of the ‘Main jackpot’ in the Lobby. It also shows how to get to the jackpot tables (click on the bad beat jackpot link/tab 50 in the area on the left and then choose the table from the list 52 shown in the center after.) The total- jackpot counter 54 also appears on this screen.
  • In FIG. 4, a popup message 60 informs players about the table type and the extra contribution amount that will be collected towards the jackpot. FIG. 4 shows a bad beat game table with the message 60 displayed to players when “taking a seat” (entering the game).
  • FIG. 5 shows a bad beat table which gives the overall look and feel of the jackpot tables. A jackpot counter 62 is also shown here.
  • FIG. 6 illustrates the real time jackpot contribution collection 70 at the bad beat table. The bad beat jackpot contribution is collected on run time from the ‘pot’ and displayed separately on the bad beat jackpot table.
  • FIG. 7 shows a bad beat game table with a jackpot winner message 80 with win amount. The pop-up message 80 to the jackpot winner appears immediately on winning the jackpot along with the win amount, and also informs how much jackpot money other players won. This message is displayed only to the jackpot winner. The jackpot prize money distribution is done immediately on game close. The dealer chat message 82- informs everyone of the jackpot amount they have won, and the seed amount of the next jackpot. This message is visible to everyone on the table, players as well as watchers (not seated players) and displayed immediately on a jackpot hit.
  • FIG. 8 shows a bad beat game table with a jackpot hand winner message 84 with win amount.
  • FIG. 9 shows a bad beat game table with a jackpot hand participants' message 86 with win amount.
  • FIG. 10 shows a dealer chat message 82 to all players on the site with information on the jackpot hit. This message appears on all game tables including other bad beat jackpot game tables. Also, FIG. 11 shows a pop-up message 90 to all players on the site with information of the jackpot hit, which also appears at all game tables.  F_INST_START_TIME   DATE   DEFAULT sysdate,  F_SEED_AMOUNT   INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_PLAYER_CONTRIB   INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_GAMES_COUNT   INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  CONSTRAINT PK_JACKPOT_ID  PRIMARY KEY ( F_ID )   USING INDEX    TABLESPACE PP_SMALL_INDA PCTFREE 10    STORAGE ( INITIAL 1048576 NEXT 40960 PCTINCREASE 0 ))   TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA   PCTFREE 10   PCTUSED 40   INITRANS 1   MAXTRANS 255  STORAGE (   INITIAL 32768   NEXT 32768   PCTINCREASE 0   MINEXTENTS 1   MAXEXTENTS 2147483645   FREELISTS 1 FREELIST GROUPS 1 )   NOCACHE; ALTER TABLE T_JACKPOT ADD CONSTRAINT FK_JACKPOT_JP_RAKE_STRUC_ID FOREIGN KEY (F_RAKE_STRUCTURE_ID) REFERENCES PPOKEROPS.T_RAKE_STRUCTURE (F_ID);

    T_JACKPOT_MESSAGES
  • Popup and dealer chat messages for each active jackpot instance is stored I this table and display to various player group on the client when they join a jackpot table or a jackpot has been hit. F_JACKPOT_ID jackpot ID F_TABLE_JOIN_POPUP Table join pop to display client F_TABLE_JOIN_DEALER_CHAT Dealer chat message (we are not using now) F_JACKPOT_WINNER_MSG Winner message F_HAND_WINNER_MSG F_TABLE_PARTICIPANTS_MSG F_JACKPOT_ALL_TABLE_POPUP F_JACKPOT_ALL_TABLE_CHAT_MSG F_SYSTEM_DEALER_CHAT_MSG F_PLAY_MONEY_MSG F_EXPIRY_MSG CREATE TABLE T_JACKPOT_MESSAGES (  F_JACKPOT_ID    INTEGER   NOT NULL,  F_TABLE_JOIN_POPUP   VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_TABLE_JOIN_DEALER_CHAT   VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_JACKPOT_WINNER_MSG   VARCHAR2 (2000),

    Definitions of Various Poker Hands:
    Royal Flush: Ten, Jack, Queen, King, Ace of the same suit. Straight Flush: Straight with all five cards in the same suit. Four of a Kind: Four cards of the same number or face value (“quads”). Full House: Three cards of one number or face value and two cards of another number or face value. If more than one player has a full House, the full House with the highest ranking three of a kind (“trips”) wins. Flush: Five cards of the same suit. If there is more than one flush, the hand with the highest card(s) wins. Straight: Five cards in sequence. Cards can be in any suit. An Ace can be used in the highest straight (10, J, Q, K, A) and the lowest straight (A,2,3,4,5). Three of a Kind: Three cards of the same number or face value (“trips”). Two Pair: If two players have two pair, the hand with the highest pair wins. If they have the same high pair, whoever has the second highest pair wins. If they have the same two pair, whoever has the highest fifth card (“kicker”) wins. One Pair: Two cards of the same number or face value. If two players have the same pair, the highest outside card(s) wins. High Card: The hand with the highest card(s) wins.
    List of database tables created for jackpot system
    T_JACKPOT:
  • Master table for jackpot, while creating a new jackpot instance for a jackpot type, a one record will be inserted in this table. F_ID jackpot ID created by DB F_NAME jackpot name Added by admin page, Edit of this name will not reflect automatically we need to restart all servers. F_START_TIME Start time of the jackpot updated by Admin page, but we are not using this when ever we create jackpot will treat it as active. F_END_TIME jackpot end time F_STATUS Status of the jackpot Active(0)/Inactive(1) F_RAKE_STRUCTURE_ID Rake structure associated with this jackpot F_CLASS_NAME Class name associated with this jackpot while loading table table will use this class to evaluate jackpot condition. F_CURRENT_INSTANCE_ID Running instance id for this jackpot F_INST_START_TIME Start time of running instance F_SEED_AMOUNT Seed amount added while creating of this jackpot and after jackpot hit carry forwarded seed amount for this instance F_PLAYER_CONTRIB Player contribution for this instance F_GAMES_COUNT Games count for this instance CREATE TABLE T_JACKPOT (  F_ID   INTEGER  NOT NULL,  F_NAME   VARCHAR2 (50) NOT NULL,  F_START_TIME   DATE   DEFAULT sysdate,  F_END_TIME   DATE,  F_STATUS   NUMBER (1)  DEFAULT 0,  F_RAKE_STRUCTURE_ID  INTEGER,  F_CLASS_NAME   VARCHAR2 (200) NOT NULL,  F_CURRENT_INSTANCE_ID INTEGER,  F_HAND_WINNER_MSG   VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_TABLE_PARTICIPANTS_MSG VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_JACKPOT_ALL_TABLE_POPUP  VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_JACKPOT_ALL_TABLE_CHAT_MSG VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_SYSTEM_DEALER_CHAT_MSG VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_PLAY_MONEY_MSG   VARCHAR2 (2000),  F_EXPIRY_MSG    VARCHAR2 (2000),  CONSTRAINT PK_JACKPOT_MESSAGES  PRIMARY KEY ( F_JACKPOT_ID )   USING INDEX    TABLESPACE PP_SMALL_INDA PCTFREE 10    STORAGE ( INITIAL 1048576 NEXT 40960 PCTINCREASE 0 ))   TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA   PCTFREE 10   PCTUSED 40   INITRANS 1   MAXTRANS 255  STORAGE (   INITIAL 32768   NEXT 32768   PCTINCREASE 0   MINEXTENTS 1   MAXEXTENTS 2147483645   FREELISTS 1 FREELIST GROUPS 1 )   NOCACHE; ALTER TABLE T_JACKPOT_MESSAGES ADD CONSTRAINT FK_JACKPOT_MESSAGES_JPID  FOREIGN KEY (F_JACKPOT_ID)   REFERENCES PPOKEROPS.T_JACKPOT (F_ID);

    T_JACKPOT_PAYOUT_STRUCTURE
  • This table stores the details of payout that will be made to the players for a given jackpot id. It stores what percentage of the total jackpot will be paid to jackpot winner, hand winner (if applicable), other participants in the hand, percentage of the current jackpot amount that will seed the next jackpot and service fee percentage. F_JACKPOT_ID jackpot ID F_SEED_PCT For Non Progressive jackpot this should be 0 F_SERVICE_CHARGE_PCT We are not setting this fields for non progressive F_JACKPOT_WINNER_PCT F_GAME_WINNER_PCT F_PLAYERS_PCT F_JP_CONSIDER_ALL_TABLES This field we are not using at all CREATE TABLE T_JACKPOT_PAYOUT_STRUCTURE (  F_JACKPOT_ID    INTEGER,  F_SEED_PCT    INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_SERVICE_CHARGE_PCT   INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_JACKPOT_WINNER_PCT   INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_GAME_WINNER_PCT   INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_PLAYERS_PCT    INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_JP_CONSIDER_ALL_TABLES NUMBER (1)  DEFAULT 0)   TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA   PCTFREE 10   PCTUSED 40   INITRANS 1   MAXTRANS 255  STORAGE (   INITIAL 32768   NEXT 32768   PCTINCREASE 0   MINEXTENTS 1   MAXEXTENTS 2147483645   FREELISTS 1 FREELIST GROUPS 1 )   NOCACHE; ALTER TABLE T_JACKPOT_PAYOUT_STRUCTURE ADD CONSTRAINT FK_JACKPOT_PAYOUT_STRUCTURE  FOREIGN KEY (F_JACKPOT_ID)   REFERENCES PPOKEROPS.T_JACKPOT (F_ID) ; T_JACKPOT_LOG F_JACKPOT_ID ,jackpot ID F_INSTANCE_ID Instance ID for this jackpot F_START_TIME Start time of this instance F_END_TIME End time of this instance F_SEED_AMOUNT Seed amount carry forward by previous jackpot/added by house initially F_PLAYER_CONTRIB Player contribution for this instance F_GAMES_COUNT Number of games played for this instance F_TABLE_ID jackpot hit table id F_GAME_ID jackpot hit game id F_STATUS If it is 0 not hit, 1 caliculated, 2 distributed

    T_JACKPOT_RESEED_CONFIG
  • In this table we capture the amount of money the house has added into a given id over and above the seed amount by which this jackpot instance was created. F_SERIAL_ID Serial ID generated by DB F_JACKPOT_ID jackpot ID to reseed config F_TOTAL_AMOUNT Total amount to reseed F_AMOUNT_ALREADY_ADDED Amount added till now F_INC_AMOUNT Increment amount at a time F_START_TIME_OFFSET Start time to reseed on every day F_END_TIME_OFFSET End time to reseed on every day F_START_DATE Start date to reseed amount F_END_DATE End date to reseed amount F_LAST_SYSTEM_UPDATED_AT Last reseed amount updated F_LAST_CONFIG_UPDATED_AT Last configuration updated F_INTERVAL_IN_MINS Interval time to update seed F_ACTIVE If it is 0 active, 1 is for inactive F_AGENT_NAME Last updated agent name F_COMMENTS Last updated comments CREATE TABLE T_JACKPOT_RESEED_CONFIG (  F_SERIAL_ID   INTEGER   NOT NULL,  F_JACKPOT_ID    INTEGER   NOT NULL,  F_TOTAL_AMOUNT   INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_AMOUNT_ALREADY_ADDED   INTEGER,  F_INC_AMOUNT    INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_START_TIME_OFFSET   INTERVAL DAY(2)  TO SECOND(6),  F_END_TIME_OFFSET   INTERVAL DAY(2) TO SECOND(6),  F_START_DATE    DATE,  F_END_DATE    DATE,  F_LAST_SYSTEM_UPDATED_AT DATE,  F_LAST_CONFIG_UPDATED_AT DATE,  F_INTERVAL_IN_MINS   INTEGER,  F_ACTIVE   NUMBER (1)  NOT NULL,  F_AGENT_NAME    VARCHAR2 (30) NOT NULL,  F_COMMENTS    VARCHAR2 (100),  CONSTRAINT PK_JACKPOT_RESEED_ID  PRIMARY KEY ( F_SERIAL_ID )    USING INDEX     TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA PCTFREE 10     STORAGE ( INITIAL 32768 NEXT 32768 PCTINCREASE 0 ))   TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA   PCTFREE 10   PCTUSED 40   INITRANS 1   MAXTRANS 255  STORAGE (   INITIAL 32768   NEXT 32768   PCTINCREASE 0   MINEXTENTS 1   MAXEXTENTS 2147483645   FREELISTS 1 FREELIST GROUPS 1 )   NOCACHE; T_JACKPOT_RESEED_CONFIG_LOG: log file for jackpot ressed config CREATE TABLE T_JACKPOT_RESEED_CONFIG_LOG (  F_SERIAL_ID    INTEGER   NOT NULL,  F_JACKPOT_ID    INTEGER   NOT NULL,  F_TOTAL_AMOUNT    INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_AMOUNT_ALREADY_ADDED   INTEGER,  F_INC_AMOUNT    INTEGER   DEFAULT 0,  F_START_TIME_OFFSET   INTERVAL DAY(2)  TO SECOND(6),  F_END_TIME_OFFSET   INTERVAL DAY(2) TO SECOND(6),  F_START_DATE    DATE,  F_END_DATE    DATE,  F_LAST_SYSTEM_UPDATED_AT DATE,  F_LAST_CONFIG_UPDATED_AT DATE,  F_INTERVAL_IN_MINS   INTEGER,  F_ACTIVE    NUMBER (1)  NOT NULL,  F_AGENT_NAME    VARCHAR2 (30) NOT NULL,  F_COMMENTS    VARCHAR2 (100))   TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA   PCTFREE 10   PCTUSED 40   INITRANS 1   MAXTRANS 255  STORAGE (   INITIAL 32768   NEXT 32768   PCTINCREASE 0   MINEXTENTS 1   MAXEXTENTS 2147483645   FREELISTS 1 FREELIST GROUPS 1 )   NOCACHE;

    T_JACKPOT_USER_GAMES
  • Captures the details of the game and table id from which the jackpot contribution was collected and along with the list of players playing in that hand. F_JACKPOT_INSTANCE_ID jackpot instance id F_JACKPOT_CONTRIBUTION jackpot contribution for this game for this player F_USER_ID User id for this game F_GAME_ID Game id F_TABLE_ID Table where this game played F_TIME Time of the game played T_JACKPOT_TRANSACTION F_TXN_ID Transaction ID generated by DB F_JACKPOT_INSTANCE_ID jackpot instance id F_ACCOUNT_NAME Account name of this jackpot (pp_jackpotFund, ep_jackpotFundep .....) F_INITIAL_BALANCE Initial balance for this account F_AMOUNT Amount to update F_TYPE The type of updation defined in T_JACKPOT_TXN_TYPE F_TIME Time of the updation F_AGENT_NAME Agent name if any one updates default system F_COMMENTS F_USER_INIT_BALANCE CREATE TABLE T_JACKPOT_TRANSACTION (  F_TXN_ID    INTEGER   NOT NULL,  F_JACKPOT_INSTANCE_ID  INTEGER,  F_ACCOUNT_NAME   VARCHAR2 (40) DEFAULT null,  F_INITIAL_BALANCE   INTEGER,  F_AMOUNT    INTEGER,  F_TYPE    VARCHAR2 (20),  F_TIME    DATE,  F_AGENT_NAME    VARCHAR2 (30),  F_COMMENTS    VARCHAR2 (200),  F_USER_INIT_BALANCE  INTEGER,  CONSTRAINT PK_JACKPOT_TRANSACTION  PRIMARY KEY ( F_TXN_ID )    USING INDEX     TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA PCTFREE 10     STORAGE ( INITIAL 32768 NEXT 32768 PCTINCREASE 0 ))   TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA   PCTFREE 10   PCTUSED 40   INITRANS 1   MAXTRANS 255  STORAGE (   INITIAL 32768   NEXT 32768   PCTINCREASE 0   MINEXTENTS 1   MAXEXTENTS 2147483645   FREELISTS 1 FREELIST GROUPS 1 )   NOCACHE; CREATE INDEX I_JACKPOT_INSTANCE_ID ON  “PPOKEROPS”.T_JACKPOT  TRANSACTION(F_JACKPOT_INSTANCE_ID)  TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA  PCTFREE 10 STORAGE(INITIAL 32768 NEXT 32768 PCTINCREASE 0 ) ; CREATE INDEX I_JACKPOT_USER_TIME ON  “PPOKEROPS”.T_JACKPOT_TRANSACTION(F  ACCOUNT_NAME, F_TIME)  TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA  PCTFREE 10 STORAGE(INITIAL 32768 NEXT 32768 PCTINCREASE 0 ) ; T_JACKPOT_TXN_TYPE F_ID F_CREDIT_DEBIT F_PL_FLAG F_DESC F_COMMENT CREATE TABLE T_JACKPOT_TXN_TYPE (  F_ID   VARCHAR2 (20) NOT NULL,  F_CREDIT_DEBIT NUMBER,  F_PL_FLAG   NUMBER,  F_DESC    VARCHAR2 (100),  F_COMMENT   VARCHAR2 (100),   CONSTRAINT CHK_JACKPOT_TXN_TYPE_UPID    CHECK (f_id=upper(trim(f_id))),   CONSTRAINT PK_JACKPOT_TXN_TYPE   PRIMARY KEY ( F_ID )    USING INDEX     TABLESPACE PP_SMALL_INDA PCTFREE 10     STORAGE ( INITIAL 1048576 NEXT 40960     PCTINCREASE 0 ))   TABLESPACE SMALL_TABA   PCTFREE 10   PCTUSED 40   INITRANS 1   MAXTRANS 255  STORAGE (   INITIAL 32768   NEXT 32768   PCTINCREASE 0   MINEXTENTS 1   MAXEXTENTS 2147483645   FREELISTS 1 FREELIST GROUPS 1 )   NOCACHE; T_AUDIT_DAILY_JP_BALANCE T_AUDIT_DAILY_JP_SUMMARY T_AUDIT_JP_BALANCE_LOG
  • While the foregoing written description of the invention enables one of ordinary skill to make and use what is considered presently to be the best mode thereof, those of ordinary skill will understand and appreciate the existence of variations, combinations, and equivalents of the specific exemplary embodiment and method herein. The invention should therefore not be limited by the above described embodiment and method, but by all embodiments and methods within the scope and spirit of the invention as claimed.

Claims (45)

1. A networked game, having one or more prize funds, said networked game comprising:
a lobby screen display from which a player can request to be seated at one or more of
a plurality of virtual game positions which are identified as prize fund game positions;
a dynamic game position screen display presented to each player including a representation of a game position and at least one player, and, at one or more times:
a representation of said player's game status, and an indication of a fee to be collected from amounts contributed by players for funding a prize fund,
a counter for indicating the cumulative funds in said prize fund, and
a message identifying one or more players who have won funds from said prize fund, and the amounts which they have won.
2. A networked game according to claim 1, wherein said position screen display further includes, at one or more times,
a message identifying a player who has won the game and the amount which said player has won.
3. A networked game according to claim 1, wherein said position screen display further includes, at one or more times,
a message identifying players at one or more other positions who have won funds from said prize fund, and the amounts which they have won.
4. A networked game according to claim 1, wherein said screen display further includes, at one or more times,
a starting amount for the next prize fund.
5. A networked game according to claim 1, wherein said prize fund is awarded in accordance with predetermined rules available for display at said lobby screen display.
6. A networked game according to claim 5, wherein said prize fund is a bad beat prize find, wherein a high ranking player game result has lost to an even higher ranking player game result, as defined by said predetermined rules.
7. A networked game according to claim 5, wherein said prize fund is a high player game result prize fund, wherein a player getting the highest player game result during a specified period wins a prize fund amount, as defined by said predetermined rules.
8. A networked game according to claim 1, wherein said message comprises a pop-up message.
9. A networked card game according to claim 1, wherein said message comprises a chat message.
10. A networked game, such as poker, having one or more jackpots, said networked game comprising:
a lobby screen display from which a player can request to be seated at one or more of a plurality of virtual game tables which are identified as jackpot game tables;
playing cards electronically dealt to players at one of said jackpot game tables from an electronic game deck, thereby forming player hands;
a dynamic game table screen display presented to each player including a
representation of a game table and players, and, at one or more times:
a representation of the playing cards forming said player's hand, and
an indication of a fee to be collected from a pot containing amounts wagered by players for funding a jackpot,
a jackpot counter for indicating the cumulative funds in said jackpot, and
a message identifying one or more players at said table who have won funds from said jackpot, and the amounts which they have won.
11. A networked game according to claim 10, wherein said table screen display further includes, at one or more times,
a message identifying a player at said table who has won the hand and the amount which said player has won.
12. A networked game according to claim 10, wherein said table screen display further includes, at one or more times,
a message identifying players at one or more other tables who have won funds from said jackpot, and the amounts which they have won.
13. A networked game according to claim 10, wherein said table screen display further includes, at one or more times,
a starting amount for the next jackpot.
14. A networked game according to claim 10, wherein said jackpot is awarded in accordance with predetermined rules available for display at said lobby screen display.
15. A networked game according to claim 14, wherein said jackpot is a bad beat jackpot, wherein a high ranking hand has lost to an even higher ranking hand, as defined by said predetermined rules.
16. A networked game according to claim 14, wherein said jackpot is a high hand jackpot, wherein a player getting the highest hand during a specified period wins a jackpot amount, as defined by said predetermined rules.
17. A networked game according to claim 10, wherein said message comprises a pop-up message.
18. A networked game according to claim 10, wherein said message comprises a chat message from a virtual dealer.
19. A networked game, having one or more prize funds, said networked game comprising:
means for providing a lobby screen display from which a player can request to be seated at one or more of a plurality of virtual game positions, at least some of which are identified as prize fund game positions, and
means for admitting one or more players to one of said positions, comprising
means for differentiating between prize fund game positions and other game positions for purposes of creating a wait list, and
means for creating one wait list for the prize fund game positions and one wait list for the other game positions.
20. A networked game, such as poker, having one or more jackpots, said networked game comprising:
means for providing a lobby screen display from which a player can request to be seated at one or more of a plurality of virtual game tables, at least some of which are identified as jackpot game tables;
means for admitting one or more players to one of said tables, comprising,
means for differentiating between jackpot game tables and other game tables for purposes of creating a wait list, and
means for creating one wait list for the jackpot tables and one wait list for the other game tables.
21. A networked game according to claim 20, and further including
means for electronically dealing playing cards to players admitted to said one of said jackpot tables from an electronic game deck, thereby forming player hands;
means for presenting to each player a dynamic game table screen display including, at one or more times:
a representation of the playing cards forming said player's hand,
an indication of a fee to be collected from a pot containing amounts wagered by players for funding a jackpot;
an indication of the cumulative funds in said jackpot,
a message identifying players at said table who have won funds from said jackpot, and the amounts which they have won, and
means for delaying said electronically dealing of a next hand until said message has been displayed, without disturbing the display of other messages.
22. A networked game according to claim 20, and further including means for creating on said lobby screen a message box split into two parts, one for messages and the other for the displaying a jackpot counter.
23. A networked game according to claim 20, and further including means for displaying the jackpot counter only on jackpot tables and for determining the jackpot type for each jackpot table and displaying the correct jackpot value for that jackpot type.
24. A networked gaming system having one or more prize funds, comprising:
at least one game server;
a game client application by which a player connects to the server;
at least one prize fund game position hosted on said game server, and which holds prize fund qualification logic and checks every game after completion to evaluate if the game qualifies for a prize fund;
a game server controller application which manages a life cycle of one or more game positions;
a database which stores information to be utilized by the system,
wherein changes made through the admin reports are automatically updated on game server controller.
25. A networked gaming system having one or more jackpots, comprising:
at least one game server;
a game client application by which a player connects to the server;
at least one jackpot game table hosted on said game server, and which holds jackpot qualification logic and checks every game after completion to evaluate if the game qualifies for a jackpot;
a game server controller which manages a life cycle of one or more game tables;
a database which stores information to be utilized by the system,
wherein changes made through the admin reports are automatically updated on game server controller.
26. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, and further including an admin web page which creates, deletes, and updates active jackpot parameters,
27. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, and further including a jackpot manager which collects jackpot information from said game table, updates counter information to the game server controller on periodic basis and sends updates to all other game servers about a jackpot hit;
28. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, and further including at least one other game table, wherein said at least one game server includes at least one jackpot game server and at least one other game server.
29. A networked gaming system according to claim 28, wherein said at least one jackpot game server comprises a server side Java application, which hosts multiple jackpot game tables concurrently, receives connection requests from the game client, maintains a connection and ensures communication between the game client and the jackpot game tables hosted in it.
30. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, wherein the game server controller communicates with the database.
31. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, wherein the information stored by the database includes relatively static configuration information and dynamic runtime information.
32. A networked gaming system according to claim 27, wherein said at least one jackpot game table controls the collection of ajackpot contribution and updates counter values and jackpot status to the jackpot manager after completion of every game.
33. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, wherein each game server manages a jackpot counter displayed in a lobby and at each game table hosted by the game server, and broadcasts jackpot messages to players on all the game tables hosted by the game server.
34. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, and further including at least two message queues between said game server controller and said game servers to send updated jackpot amounts and jackpot win popup message to players.
35. A networked gaming system according to claim 25, wherein each game server includes means for delaying the start of a subsequent game until anyjackpot message has been displayed, without disturbing the display of other messages.
36. A networked gaming system according to claim 28, wherein each game server includes means for differentiating between jackpot game tables and other game tables for purposes of creating a wait list, and means for creating one wait list for the jackpot tables and one wait list for the other game tables.
37. A method of conducting a networked game, such as poker, having one or more jackpots, said method comprising:
providing a lobby screen display from which a player can request seat at one or more of a plurality of virtual game tables which are identified as jackpot game tables;
presenting to each player a dynamic game table screen display including a representation of a game table and players, and, at one or more times: a representation of the game status of said player, an indication of a fee to be collected from a pot containing amounts wagered by players for funding a jackpot, a jackpot counter for indicating the cumulative fuids in said jackpot, and a message identifying one or more players at said table who have won funds from said jackpot, and the amounts which they have won.
38. A method according to claim 37, wherein said presenting a game table screen display further includes, at one or more times, displaying message identifying a player at said table who has won the game and the amount which said player has won.
39. A method according to claim 37, wherein said presenting a game table screen display further includes, at one or more times, displaying a message identifying players at one or more other tables who have won funds from said jackpot, and the amounts which they have won.
40. A method according to claim 37, wherein said presenting a game table screen display further includes, at one or more times, displaying a starting amount for the next jackpot.
41. A method according to claim 37, further including awarding said jackpot in accordance with predetermined rules available for display at said lobby screen display.
42. A method according to claim 37, wherein said jackpot is a bad beat jackpot, wherein a high ranking poker hand has lost to an even higher ranking poker hand, as defined by said predetermined rules.
43. A method according to claim 37, wherein said jackpot is a high hand jackpot, wherein a player getting the highest poker hand during a specified period wins a jackpot amount, as defined by said predetermined rules.
44. A method according to claim 37, wherein said message comprises a pop-up message.
45. A method according to claim 37, wherein said message comprises a chat message from a virtual dealer.
US11/154,683 2004-07-30 2005-06-16 Networked gaming systems and methods Abandoned US20060025221A1 (en)

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