Game Networking Contractor Needed

Overview


Immersed Games is harnessing the power of video games to empower students to learn and love STEM through authentic problem solving.

Our flagship product, Tyto Online, is a video game for middle school students to learn science content and skills. The student experience includes activities like examining coral bleaching as an anchoring phenomena for learning about climate change, collecting evidence to determine if a planet is an invasive species, and breeding dragons to learn about genetics.

Our work has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation and Department of Education. We currently have a National Science Foundation Phase II R&D grant.

The Problem We Need Help With


We built Tyto Online with Unreal Engine 4, and to date have been available as an installed game. However, this has created large limitations and restrictions in the education market where you might have to wait weeks for IT to install your software, so we have decided that getting playable in a web browser is our top priority.

UE4 can actually export to HTML5, compiling to WebAssembly using emscripten. However, Tyto Online uses RakNet (a UDP protocol) for the networking library for our multiplayer game, and we need it to talk with WebSockets in order to work in a browser.

Our team will also need to engage in optimizations to support fast load times and other needs for transitioning to a web-based approach.

Expected Approach to Solution


Our current thinking to solve our networking problem is to build a layer between the web client and our servers that will translate between RakNet and WebSockets, forwarding packets between WebSocket client and our servers. The proxy therefore needs to understand both WebSockets and RakNet (uses TCP/UDP protocol). This will also require that the current RakNet-based client can send WebSocket communication after its been built with emscripten.

We are open to alternative solutions, but are trying to keep the scope around 3 months to meet the needs of the Fall school year starting.

Contractor Requirements


We are seeking a contractor that can help us with this web transition, either someone who can help consult on the whole process or just focus on solving the key networking problem and expected solution approach described above.

Ideally, this individual would have a familiarity with all the above technologies (TCP/UDP, emscripten, WebSockets), but we know it’s likely our best candidate will only be familiar with a couple of them. We do have in-house developers you will be working with, from web developers to our UE4 game developers.

Compensation


Pay: Negotiable

This position will be funded through a grant from the National Science Foundation, which means the work must be done within the United States (but absolutely can be a foreign national authorized to work in the U.S.). We simply are not allowed to pay someone for work not done on U.S. soil with these federal funds (even U.S. citizens).

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

Can you do this?

Simply email lindsey@immersedgames.com with information about your experience/ability to solve this problem, and we’ll talk soon!