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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

iPhone App coming along

Getting closer to alpha testing... working on ways make it fun. There is a great book called the Theory of Fun (in game design) that I need to dig out of the library...

New blog URL

The blog should now be operating under

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

BeerTrucker is coming to iPhone....

I have actually been working on something for the past six months... I've been experimenting with iPhone development, and the first iPhone game from the BeerMogul stable is nearly ready!

BeerTrucker is not a replacement for BeerMogul (that's still coming...), it's a new game set in the BeerMogul world. The game is played on a coaster (or beermat depending on what part of the world you're from). You own a Brewery that's producing kegs of beer and your goal is to set up contracts with pubs in the area to supply beer.

The challenge is then to coordinate the trucks to get the beer delivered on time - if a pub runs out of beer the punters will soon become discouraged and you are likely to lose your supply contract.

There's lots of other cool stuff - you can upgrade pubs and your brewery to get more money and functionality, you can buy more trucks, but make sure you keep an eye out for the weather - it can destroy a pub in seconds!

Lots more coming soon, but right now we're looking for Alpha testers who will be happy to dedicate some time to testing April. If you are interested please comment against this post and we'll get in touch with you.


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New blog hosting arrangements

So I finally sorted out the changes after blogspot stopped allowing ftp publishing of blogs - now I can start posting again!

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Came across this cool site that tracks beer news... Beeraholix

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Hey there... blimpy beer

How awesome is this? A singed bottle of beer from the Hindenburg..

Monday, December 01, 2008

Google Adsense for BEER

Wow - just looking at the Adsense section on the right of this blog and it looks like these days it actually works! When I first set it up it didn't really know how to deal with BeerMogul, but I'm seeing ads for Dan Murphy's (a local liquor chain), a guide to pubs in north east England, and some RPG games - congrats Google!

What do you see there? Send me a comment - and have a click on them to raise some revenue ;-)


We're still here...

OK so I know it's been nearly 2 years since the last post, but after several false starts things are moving again. I'm taking a more simple approach. Apply the new look that we had designed ages ago and "fix" the god tool.

I've just finished applying the new look & feel to the main pages - the others will follow after re-launch, and I'm about to start on the god tool. This time I'm going to write it as a stored proc in SQL Server 2005 to avoid all of the performance issues I had when running it as ASP. Wish me luck!

P.S. Thanks to all those that kept posting comments on the blog - you're the ones that drove me back to it!


Monday, February 05, 2007

God Tool?

Sure BeerMogul looks like a pretty simple game when you're a player - you log in, buy and sell properties & beer, then every day something happens when people either come to your pub, and brewers get to manufacture beer.

What is it that happens? We run the "God Tool". Probably the most complicated part of the system, the God Tool does a few things...

  1. It simulates the manufacture of beer, one brewery at a time. It considers the quality of the brewery and the quality of the features installed, then looks at the investment that a brewer is proposing to make in order to determine exactly how much beer gets produced in a single day.
  2. It processes all of the "contracts" which represent committed trades between brewers & pub owners.
  3. It simulates a night at the pub! Punters are generated (including the amount of money in their pocket, a taste for a certain quality of beer, and a tolerance to price & quality variation).

As you can imagine, this was quite a time consuming exercise, and it used to bring the server to it's knees. It ended up being the downfall of the game - keeping it running successfully in a reasonable amount of time was VERY time consuming and demanding.

How are we going to fix it this time? We're looking to follow a "progressive" processing model. Rather than processing everything in one "big bang", we'll progressively process all of the God Tool activities throughout a 24 hour period. The good thing is that it will give people a chance to see the status of their properties change throughout the day - you'll be able to take a look and see how many punters are in your pub at any given time - or look at your brewery to see how your manufacturing schedule is going.

It's still a theory obviously, but pretty important. We have to get everything right if we want to make sure the game lasts this time!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Project Beerstar?

So we came across Project Rockstar today ( From all accounts it's a successful browser based multi-player game - not too dissimilar to Beermogul! Looks like it was developed around the same time (2000/2001) and has the same basic elements - you sign up and receive money with which you have to establish a property (a band). You can then trade with that property to receive money.

I like the fact that players can choose to be record companies or venues (mutually exclusive) in order to trade off the good fortunes of others (by recording their material or charging punters admission). Also interesting is the fact that they have to restart the game occasionally when it becomes too lopsided (detailed here: - this is a problem that we always encountered in BeerMogul - we never did find a solution.

The daily email is a little bland for my liking - wouldn't take much to spruce it up and use it to really attract players back into the game.

A site that looks after their advertising placement said that they receive 20M page impressions a month - looks like a great way to pay for the game. At 140,000 subscribers (only 10-15K active) that means the pages per registered user rate is around 143 per month (that's 20,000,000 divided by 140,000)! That sounds very high (I wish we still had the web stats from our original proof of concept), but very encouraging. Makes me think that if we bank on about 25 per month for Beermogul that we'll be very conservative and have an achievable target!

Have a look at the site and let us know what you think.