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Spades HD Q&A with Pogo Sean!

Pogo Llama: Pogo Sean is here and he’s been very, very busy! Along with reading all your helpful feedback on Jungle Gin HD, Pogo Sean has also been working hard on Spades HD! Welcome back, Pogo Sean. Have you had any time to eat or sleep?!
Pogo Sean: *Chuckles* Thanks, Pogo Llama! The team has been busy for sure.

Pogo Llama: Let’s get straight into the questions about Spades HD. First question: How do you play with a friend in Spades HD?
Pogo Sean: That is a great question. To play and chat with your friend in Spades HD, please follow the steps outlined below:

  1. From the main menu click/tap the “Get Started” button in the “Join a Game” panel.
    That will take players to the “Join a Game” menu.
  2. Any open games currently created by friends will appear at the top of the page under the “Friends’ Tables” header.
  3. Players can filter available “Friends’ Tables” by clicking/tapping on the box next to “Filter By” text.
  4. To join an open “Friends’ Tables” the player just needs to click/tap on the “Join” option next to their friend’s game.
    1. Note: A “Friends’ Tables” is considered open so long as the friend has not started the game. You cannot join a game that is already in progress.

Pogo Llama: I do notice that ranked games are not currently available here at launch. Is this something that may come in the future?
Pogo Sean: You are correct, ranked games are being tweaked for all card games currently. This is because SCRABBLE has “NSA Ranked” games, which is something very specific to that franchise. What does that all mean? It means that Spades HD will introduce a “Skill Rating.”

Pogo Llama: Can you share a little more about how Skill Ratings work?Pogo Sean: Classic Pogo games had “Player Ratings and Ranked Ratings,” which was based on a player’s skill within the game. Classic Pogo games also had “Ranked Games,” applied specific rules to the game being played. So the team wanted to simplify things. This means we have:

  • Combined both Player Ratings and Ranked Rating into a single rating: “Skill Rating”
    • Players only need to track a single rating now.
  • “Play Now and Ranked” games affect “Skill Rating” by using the same rating across both modes it improves the quality of matchmaking.
    • Spades HD will not have a “Ranked Game” mode at launch as the team refines the ruleset for that mode.
  • Not every game will have a “Ranked Game” mode, this will be evaluated on a case by case basis.

Pogo Llama: Can you please explain how players can go up in rank in Spades HD? I believe it’s all about tricks, correct?
Pogo Sean: Correct players earn points to increase their “Pogo Rank” based on successful “Tricks” taken.

Pogo Llama: What are the main differences between the Flash version of Spades and the new HD version?
Pogo Sean: For Spades HD the team set out to do the following:

  • Improve the graphics for an HD play experience. Along with that we updated the art to make sure it follows accessibility guidelines.
  • Improve the overall quality of the sound effects and music.
  • Improve card control mechanics, which allow players multiple ways to interact with the cards. This also ensures the player has the same crontrol fidelity across PC, tablet and smartphones.
  • Improve in-game payoffs and feedback when players win, accomplished a goal or achieved a milestone. We wanted the smallest of victories to feel rewarding.
  • Ensure finding and playing with friends is as easy as possible.

 

Pogo Llama: Are there any power-ups in the new Spades HD?
Pogo Sean: No, Spades HD doesn’t have any power ups.

Pogo Llama: I’m listening to the music and I have to say it’s really catchy. It’s a very classy jazz style. Was there someone who composed the music for Spades HD?
Pogo Sean: Yes, Pogo’s very own Audio Director Eric Leblanc. He makes every game great with his attention to detail.

Pogo Llama: I appreciate art and design work quite a bit. I noticed there are 6 new main characters and 3 secondary characters in Spades HD. Please tell us how these characters were developed and how you leaned towards this art style.
Pogo Sean: The new characters are some of the team’s favorite new additions. Classic Spades had just one character, Whimpers, who we brought back for the update. However we knew we wanted to have more than just Whimpers. For the new characters we drew inspiration from the dogs owned by the team (we love our fur babies here at Pogo).
Regarding the overall look and feel of the game; we drew a lot of inspiration from the 1930’s  speakeasy and nightclub aesthetics.

Pogo Llama: Of all the new characters, which one is your favorite character so far?
Pogo Sean: My favorite would have to be Sam “Jack” Jackman. Jack is one of the secondary characters and is the Golden Labrador found on the Jack cards.

Pogo Llama: What should players keep in mind as they progress through the new Spades HD?
Pogo Sean: Players should keep in mind that while the multiplayer system may not be where all of us would like it to be at the moment, we are working hard to address feedback in order to provide players with the best experience possible.

Pogo Llama: Is there anything else you’d like to add about Spades HD?
Pogo Sean: On behalf of the team, I hope everyone enjoys the update!

Pogo Llama: Thank you so much for taking your time today to talk about Spades HD. We’ll see you again soon!

Play Spades HD now!

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