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VanillaGrape - Blog - Thoughts & Talk & Tech.

Wednesday, Oct 31, 2013
Today, we have launched two new modes, "Original-52 & Color Match" and "JAQK-16 & Color Match".
"Original-52 & Color Match"
"Original-52 & Color Match" mode contains all 52 cards from the deck.
This mode is similar to "Original-52", but in this mode, both the number on the card and the color has to match to score a point.
For example, "Queen of Spades" (black card) matches only with "Queen of Clubs" (black card), and "Queen of Hearts" (red card) matches only with "Queen of Diamonds" (red card).
"JAQK-16 & Color Match"
"JAQK-16" mode contains only 16 cards: Jack, Ace, Queen, and King of all 4 suits.
This mode is similar to "JAQK-16", but in this mode, both the number on the card and the color has to match to score a point.
For example, "Queen of Spades" (black card) matches only with "Queen of Clubs" (black card), and "Queen of Hearts" (red card) matches only with "Queen of Diamonds" (red card).
How to play
The game is played almost the same way, but there are minor differences.
To play,
  1. Turn any 2 cards face up.
    • If they're same numbered and same colored cards, you score a point, and pick 2 cards again.
    • If they're different, it's computer's turn.
  2. Computer turns 2 cards face up.
    • If they're same numbered and same colored cards, computer scores a point, and picks 2 cards again.
    • If they're different, it's your turn.
This way, the game goes back-and-forth between you and the computer. Whoever has the highest score at the end wins the game.
UI updates
We noticed sometimes at the beginning of the game, the cards would not show up properly. We have fixed this issue, and the cards should show up correctly now.
If there are any issues, please do submit feedback by contacting us. Thank you!
Wednesday, Oct 23, 2013
Today, we are super excited to announce two completely new game modes along with the original game mode of "Original-52". The new modes are called "JAQK-16" and "Short-26".
The game is still played exactly the same way as before. To play,
  1. Turn any 2 cards face up.
    • If they're same numbered cards, you score a point, and pick 2 cards again.
    • If they're different, it's computer turn.
  2. Computer turns 2 cards face up.
    • If they're same numbered cards, computer scores a point, and picks 2 cards again.
    • If they're different, it's your turn.
This way, the game goes back-and-forth between you and the computer. Whoever has the highest score at the end wins the game.
That's all same, but now onto what's new..
"Original-52"
In the "Original-52" mode, there are 52 cards available for play. This is exactly the same mode you have been playing since we launched the Memory game.
We have only assigned a name to this mode, so now it's easier to remember.
"JAQK-16"
In the "JAQK-16" mode, there are only 16 cards available for play. They are Jack, Ace, Queen, and King of all four suits, so only 16 cards.
We absolutely love this mode! You can play this mode much faster compared to the "Original-52" mode.
Try playing this mode at "Expert" difficulty with the computer, and see how it goes. You really need to have a strategy to win it!
"Short-26"
In the "Short-26" mode, there are 26 cards available for play. In "Original-52" mode, you had two pairs of each card number available. For example, you had four queen cards, four ace cards, and so on.
This means, after picking up two queens, the game still had two more queens available.
In "Short-26" mode, that is no longer the case. In this mode, once you pick two queen cards, for example, then there will be no more queen cards available for the game.
Meaning, you can make only one pair for each card number/rank. The deck of 52 is cut in half to 26, but the cards are still shuffled.
So, in one game, you might get "ten of spades" and "ten of hearts" and when you play it again, you might get "ten of clubs" and "ten of diamonds".
This mode is a lot of fun the play, so please try it out.
Thank you for playing!
Other updates
There were a lot of other code changes as well. Because of browser differences, before the code changes, the animations were only working in Chrome.
Now, after the code changes, the animations should work in all major browsers.
Other code changes included fixes for proper center-aligning of cards. This same code change allows for better organization of cards when there are less than 52 cards, such as 26 cards or 16 cards.
Thursday, Oct 17, 2013
W're happy to add this fun new feature that lets you brag your score on Facebook and Twitter.
Facebook and Twitter buttons are shown when you complete the game, regardless of the score.
When you win!
If you win a game against the computer, then you get to brag your win!
This is how it looks like when you want to share on Facebook:
And on Twitter:
When you lose.
Sometimes you want to share the news with your friends when you lose as well, especially when the computer scores 26 to 0, and this has happened to us many times in the Expert mode.
Here, the message is a little different. Here's a screenshot of what it looks like when you want to share the news on Facebook:
And on Twitter:
You can share to Facebook and Twitter regardless of your score against the computer. Facebook and Twitter buttons are shown after the game is completed.
So, try not to lose! Keep winning, and keep bragging!
Tech talk
We really enjoyed building this feature, but it came at a little cost. It was really easy to build this feature, but it took us a little more time than expected.
Twitter web-intent is really easy to plug in. All you need is to do is load the JavaScript file, and then open the share window using a link or javascript. Pass in text and url, and use encodeURIComponent() on them, and open the window. That's all there's to sharing to Twitter.
Facebook sharing is where it took us a little more time. Reason? API, docs, and a lot of other stuff has changed from the last time we experimented with sharing to Facebook.
Initially, we were looking at options that would let us directly share to Facebook without the need to create an app. We could do this using the plain old "Share" dialog. It's fine and all's great. But after looking at other options, we finally decided to just create a quick VanillaGrape app.
So, after creating the app, we quickly and easily hooked it up to our Memory game on VanillaGrape, and it was ready to go! In case you're also searching, we found that Facebook no longer allows pre-filling the comment/textbox area. In fact, the comment/text area has to be filled-in by the user.
Once your app is set up and hooked up to your web-app, for example, all you do is call the FB.ui method with appropriate options, and set method option to 'feed'. There you go!
Wednesday, Oct 16, 2013
The "Expert" mode in Memory game has been updated, as we needed to make a couple of small changes to our code.
The algorithm is still the same, and the computer is still as smart as before, so you really have to remember the opened cards if you want to win!
The changes should be transparent to you as a player. So, try out the "Expert" mode if you haven't already! It's really fun to play, and win in the Expert mode. And sometimes it's fun to just let the computer go through all cards and win.
If you are having any problems after our code changes, please contact us right away. Thank you.
Friday, Oct 11, 2013
W're very excited to announce our first card game, called Memory.
The game was founded by Christopher Louis Pelman in 1899.
The game is fun to play, and everytime you play it, it'll have cards placed in different order. In fact, there are more than 8.06 x 1067 game combinations available just for this game.
Gameplay
  1. Turn any 2 cards face up.
    • If they're same, you score a point, and pick 2 cards again.
    • If they're different, it's computer turn.
  2. Computer turns 2 cards face up.
    • If they're same, computer scores a point, and picks 2 cards again.
    • If they're different, it's your turn.
This way, the game goes back-and-forth between you and computer. Whoever has the highest score at the end wins the game.
The AI
The AI is strong in this one! If you haven't already, try playing the game in the "Expert" mode to see how easy it is for computer to beat human. In the Expert mode, you really have to remember the cards opened - not just the ones you flipped open, but also the ones computer flipped open.
The "Beginner" mode is easy, as there's almost no AI. All computer does in the Beginner mode is randomly open cards, which makes winning in this mode very easy.
"Intermediate" and "Expert" modes are similar, in that they both tell the computer to remember what cards have been opened. There is a slight difference in how cards are opened in the Expert mode, compared to the Intermediate mode. There is a little trick that can be used to improve the chances of winning, and this is what the Expert mode exploits!
The trick is:
Secret
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