Title:
System and method for network-loading game data
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A system and method for network-loading game data includes a server and a client. The server includes a databank for storing game data. The client includes a game engine; a search module to search corresponding game data from the databank according to control commands generated by the game engine; and a storage module to store the searched corresponding game data for the game engine to use. Therefore, the game engine and the game data are separated, and the game data are real-time loaded from the server when the client runs the game program.



Inventors:
Chang, Zechary (Taipei, TW)
Kung, Ken (Beijing, CN)
Bian, Bing (Beijing, CN)
Application Number:
11/021214
Publication Date:
06/29/2006
Filing Date:
12/23/2004
Assignee:
Inventec Corporation (Taipei, TW)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F9/24
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PINHEIRO, JASON PAUL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Apex Juris, Pllc Tracy Heims M. (LAKE CITY CENTER, SUITE 410, 12360 LAKE CITY WAY NORTHEAST, SEATTLE, WA, 98125, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A system for network-loading game data by separating game data from a game engine and real-time loading said game data from a server when running said game engine at a client, comprising: a server, having a game databank for classifiably storing said game data according to different functions; and a client, comprising: a game engine for implementing the overall controls of all games functions; a search module for receiving control commands from said game engine and searching corresponding game data in said game databank according to said commands; and a storage module, according to said search result, for storing said corresponding game data for said game engine to use.

2. The system for network-loading game data of claim 1 wherein said game data are functionally classified into engine data, map data, character data, animation data, learning data and level data.

3. The system for network-loading game data of claim 1 wherein said control commands is to fetch relative data package according to a current level.

4. The system for network-loading game data of claim 1 further comprises a user verification module connecting with said search module in said server for verifying user identification.

5. The system for network-loading game data of claim 1 wherein said game engine is downloaded from said server.

6. A method for network-loading game data by separating game data from a game engine and real-time loading said game data from a server when running said game engine at a client, comprising steps of: establishing a game databank in said server; loading and running said game engine at said client to get control commands; searching corresponding game data in said game databank according to said control commands; storing said corresponding game data as engine data for said game engine; and calling said engine data by said game engine to achieve corresponding game functions.

7. The method for network-loading game data of claim 6 wherein said game data are functionally classified into engine data, map data, character data, animation data, learning data and level data.

8. The method for network-loading game data of claim 6 wherein said control commands is to call relative data package according to a current level.

9. The method for network-loading game data of claim 6 further comprises a step of verifying user identification.

10. The method for network-loading game data of claim 6 further comprises a step of downloading said game engine from said server.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The invention generally relates to a system and method for loading game data, and more particular, to a system and method for real-time loading game data through network.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Along with the day-by-day increasing applications of computer image, artificial intelligence and online software, the developments of computer game are rapidly advancing. In the earliest sole-machine game, players pursue the magnificent pictures, the atmosphere and the fun of the game. After Internet appears, it provides an infinitely charming carrier and tool for computer games, and provides the entire game industry full energy of further development. The network game has the advantages of two-way data exchange, fast speed and no spatial limitation. It fundamentally enhances the game interaction, simulation and athletics, thus to enable the game players expressing their potentials in the virtual world that cannot be achieved in the real world. It changes the situation of fixity, stereotype and facing only with computer in the conventional sole-machine game. The computer game industry is now in the golden time of vigorous development. How to utilize the network superiority and develop better learning and game software is the focal point of emulation for the current software developers.

In the computer game development, game engine is the first thing to be established. It is like a frame of a game. After the frame is established, the level designer, the modeling designer and the animation artist can fill in the contents.

Recently, because of the high development cost of game engine and the possible sharing of some game engines as standard engines for other game developments, the game engines can be licensed to others. Therefore, each game does not need to develop the codes from the beginning so as to save a lot of repetitive works. However, in order to develop individualized games, the developers have to add in game data based on the engine program. After the game data being finished, they are bundled with the game engine to become a full game. The disadvantages of the procedure are that the data is unable to be updated easily, the codes are complicated and the entire game occupies more memory space. Therefore, how to provide a game encoding method capable of updating the game data easily and reducing the memory space is the main object of current game development.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In view of the above problems, the invention provides a system and method for loading game data through network. The primary object is to enable real-time updating of game data and to reduce the memory space for running the game.

To achieve the aforesaid object, the invention provides a system for loading game data through network. By separating the game data from the game engine, the game data is loaded when the program runs. The system includes a server having a game databank for classifiably storing game data according to different functions; a client, including a game engine, for implementing the overall controls of all games functions; a search module for receiving control commands from the game engine and searching corresponding game data in the game databank according to the commands; and a storage module, according to the search result, for storing the corresponding game data as the engine data, for the game engine to call.

Further, the present invention provides a method for network-loading game data. By separating the game data from the game engine, the game data is loaded when the program runs. A game databank is first established in a server. A client loads and runs a game engine to generate control commands. The process searches corresponding game data in the game databank according to the control commands, then stores the searched game data as the engine data, thus to achieve the corresponding game function through calling the engine data by the game engine.

Based on the system and method for loading game data through the network according to the present invention, a client being verified through the network registration can legally and real-time download the game data of each level. It provides continuous data update to meet the game player's long-time interest. The separation of game engine and game data makes the data update convenient, and reduces the memory space required by the game. It also prevents unauthorized software using, and improves the game copyright protection.

The detailed content and technology according to the present invention, is described in conjunction with the accompanying drawings as follows:

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention will become more fully understood from the detailed description given hereinbelow. However, this description is for purposes of illustration only, and thus is not limitative of the invention, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a block diagram of the system for network-loading game data according to the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a block diagram of the system according to an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a structural schematic of data packages applied in the present invention;

FIG. 4 is an operational flowchart of the method for network-loading game data according to the present invention;

FIG. 5 is a flowchart of the method according to an embodiment of the invention; and

FIG. 6 is a flowchart of fetching game data in an embodiment of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 is a block diagram of the system for network-loading game data according to the present invention. It includes a server 10 and a client 20. The invention separates the game databank 11 from the game engine 21. When the game program at the client 20 runs, it real-time loads game data from the server 10. The structure of the invention will be described in detail hereinafter.

1. The server 10 includes a game databank 11 for classifiably storing game data according to different functions.

Wherein, the game data are classified into speech, picture, text and index by attribute. Functionally, the game data are classified into engine data, map data, character data, animation data, learning data and level data. The attributes of the various functional data are as follows:

Engine data: speech (sound effect), picture (user interface), text (hints, explanation);

Map data: index;

Character data: picture, index;

Animation data: picture, index;

Learning data: speech, text, index;

Level data: picture, speech, index.

The data design is as follows:

1) Map data design: map data is an index file corresponding to each level. The map data includes scene structure information, character list and animation list in the level.

2) Character data design: according to the character type, character data are partitioned, and a kind of character is a data block logically. A character data can be a single file. A character data block includes version number, index and picture.

3) Animation data design: according to the animation type, animation data are partitioned, and a kind of animation is a data block logically. An animation data can be a single file. An animation data block includes version number, index and picture.

4) Learning data design: each level has a corresponding learning data package. A learning data includes index (the text as keywords), picture, speech and text.

5) Level data design: each level has a corresponding level data package. The level data includes index (the text as keywords), picture and speech (the speech data can be shared with the learning data of this level).

2. The client 20 includes a game engine 21, a search module 22 and a storage module 23. The game engine 21 is used to implement the overall controls of all the game functions. The game engine controls all the stories, levels, arts, music and operations for the player. It acts as a director to bundle all the game elements and directs them to work together. Briefly, the game engine is the main routine to control all the game functions, including the collision computation, the physical system, the relative positions of objects, the player's inputs, the correct volume of sound output and so on.

The search module 22 receives control commands from the game engine and searches the corresponding game data in this game databank according to the commands.

The storage module 23 stores the searched corresponding game data for the game engine to use.

As shown in FIG. 2, the system of the invention also includes a user verification module 24 in the server 10 to verify the user identification through network registration and to guarantee the validity of user who downloads the game data.

The server engine data is bundled in the software for user to download through network. The user can locally install the game engine through the software. As shown in FIG. 3, the data package of each level includes a level data sub-package 31, a map data sub-package 32, a character data sub-package 33, an animation data sub-package 34 and a learning data sub-package 35. Each data sub-package is composed of a plurality of files. The hierarchy data package structure fulfils the management needs.

Please refer to FIG. 4, a flowchart of the method for network-loading game date according to the present invention. Establishing a game databank in the server (step 410). The client loads and runs the game engine (step 420). According to control commands generated by the game engine, searching the corresponding game data in the game databank (step 430). According to the search result, storing the searched game data as the engine data (step 440). The game engine calls the engine data and implements the corresponding game functions (step 450).

Please refer to FIG. 5, a flowchart of the method according to an embodiment of the present invention. After downloading game engine, the user runs the game engine and chooses a game level (step 510). The system verifies the user's identification and judges the validity of the user (step 520). If the user is valid, searching and downloading corresponding data package according to the level chosen by the user (step 530). After finishing the downloading, the system enters the game loop (step 540). Judging whether the user passes the level (step 550). If passes, then entering the next level or reselecting the level. If the user does not pass, then asking the user whether to quit the game (step 560). If the user selects to quit, then stopping the program.

FIG. 6 illustrates the process of fetching game data in an embodiment of the invention. Supposed in the first level, the player hits a brick (namely character in game design), the system has to play a speech “Hello”, and then it has to fetch the speech data. Supposed there are:

First level data package: level1.pkj

Learning data sub-package: learning.dat

Speech file: hello.wav

The fetching process is first to inquire the first level data package (level1.pkj) and the keyword is learning data package (learning.dat) (step 610). Then, inquiring the learning data sub-package (learning.dat) and the keyword is speech file (hello.wav) (step 620). When success, it fetches the target data, and returns with the speech data (step 630).

The invention being thus described, it will be obvious that the same may be varied in many ways. Such variations are not to be regarded as a departure from the spirit and scope of the invention, and all such modifications as would be obvious to one skilled in the art are intended to be included within the scope of the following claims.