Addictive Gaming is a united kingdom gaming clan that has been owned by myself for the past two years. In the clan there are 6 other members, 7 in total including myself. The clan specialises in training on tactics regularly to play matches in tournaments, against other United Kingdom clans for large money prizes. So far Addictive Gaming has established a very big fan base of over 200 fans and have been very successful in become one of the top counter-strike clans in the United Kingdom.
Addictive Gaming over the past two years has many results of previous counter-strike wars in our history and growing by the day. Currently all our previous results over the past two years are recorded on printouts. My current routine is too input current fixtures into the computer using a word processor and either print off 7 pages for each member. Once a fixture has turned into a result I then input the result into a large word processing file, which I print off every week. Due to the large amount of print offs of over 500 results printing the file every day would waste paper and time.
Due to the large fixture and result paper base I and the other members have agreed that we are in need of a new system that will hold our new fixtures and previous results and will be able to allow us to modify and delete data. The reason for the need of a system to hold all previous results and new fixtures is so we can organise our time better (for example new fixtures added to a database would let all other members know what time to be available), be more efficient in saving time to practice on new tactics in time for the new fixtures and be able to navigate through previous results to find out if we have played a clan before which can help us understand how to approach the match.
Problems with the current system
i) When a fixture needs to be edited by a member.
Each time a fixture gets added to the current system the fixture gets inputted into a word processor with the information needed to get to that match for each member. The fixture is then printed off and either given by hand or sent by email to the members. However is there is a mistake in the date of the fixture. This means someone would have to contact me to correct the error and resend all the information the members. This wastes time and also is poor method of communicating efficiently. This also gets frustrating when there is more than 1 fixture per night, as more data has to be communicated across the members.
ii) Only one person can add fixtures or results
With only one person in control of the system things can only be updated when I get the correct information. For example if a match was played and I was not participating in the match which, does regularly happen due to a rotation system we have adopted then the results base would not be updated until I had received the information from one of the members.
iii) Tracing previous results in the system
Every time a match is played the end outcome of the result is added to the word processing file. The amount of results that is currently on the system is over 500. Out of those 500 results we have played the same odd clans more than once. Due to the nature of the game the game from the results you can work out how to improve on penetrating the opposition clans weakness. However because there is no Alphabetical order, or nothing to identify an individual result it becomes time consuming searching through hundreds of results and often the relevant one cannot be located.
iv) E-Mail problems and loosing information
When a result or fixture is sent via E-Mail data can sometimes take quite a while to send due to the attachment. This causes a drag on the time efficiency where emails can take days to receive depending on the traffic on the server. Also this leads to the next problem, due to their being many fixtures members inbox become clogged with information that causes them to try and search through all the emails for the correct fixture. However to try and avoid this problem I have tried handing printouts to the members due to us being on LAN. However members misplace the printouts ands information is never guaranteed to get across.
Data Flow of the current system
Objectives of the new system
1) All members in the network should be able to add, delete and modify fixtures results maps and leagues.
2) It should take less than 1 minute to locate a clan we have already played before.
3) Data entry should be fast and efficient, due to the amount of existing records that will need to be entered when the system is first installed.
4) Each map in the database should be identified with an image to make it easier for members to understand if a map is new by the look of the image.
5) It should be possible to submit a result using some of the fixture data, which would save time as less input.
6) The new system should allow a hyperlink to the league URL to double check the league status.
7) The whole system should be menu driven and should all be loaded automatically.
Data Flow of the new system
Constraints and limitations
I predict the new system that is to be developed will improve time efficiency
Dramatically in recording 4 different categories of linked data. This should reflect on how the teams organisation and improve their control over matches. If this proves successful then the new system can be implemented and replace the current system of recording the specific data needed for members to type directly into the network and retrieve latest fixtures and results.
We have all agreed that Microsoft Access 2000 would be a suitable program that would be able to develop the system due to members already familiar with how to navigate through a control aspect at an understandable level. However if an alternative more efficient program comes available and is suitable for our needs we may look into using it.
To run Microsoft Access 2000 and be able to run the application smoothly during processing a PC with the following specifications would be suitable.
A Pentium 120 400mhz
16mb of ram (memory) DDR or SDRAM
3gig hard drive (In case database becomes very large)
Each user will be perfectly able to run Microsoft Access 2000 at peak performance due to the high specification that each user has.
The sever machine specification that will run the script is:
A Pentium 4 2.8gighz
1 gig of DDR ram
80 gig hard drive
Users level of information technology skills
Each user has advanced typing and navigation skills so no problems should occur with learning how to operate the new system and entering data into the forms. Also most users have been operating access before so there should be no problems with learning the basics of the program.
Consideration of possible Solutions
I have already made an online solution to our problem, however the other users are not familiar with the system online and have trouble submitting data to the database. Also this solutions seems to take a lot of computer processing power on the server as it gets rather slow and wastes time and sometimes does not even process the given command. I believe that this would not be the right system to use as it would require the users to be taught how to use the system, which is quite complicated and would require a lot of time. This system can be viewed from this given link: http://ag.aliendesigns.co.uk/scripts/bulk/results.php
However everyone has firmly agreed that the implementing of the database package on the network would be perfect for Addictive Gaming. As each member is familiar with the Microsoft Access package. Also seeing as Access has everything that can produce an efficient system for Addictive Gaming I think it is ideal.
We already have used Microsoft Access 2000 before at home and in school for various different developments. So I already know that using the package it is achievable to:
* Create Tables
* Create Relationships between tables
* Produce user interfaces such as a menu system with buttons
* Produce forms with customisable textboxes for easy data entry and validations.
* Make Queries that will give user desired information.
* Develop Reports as needed.
* Enable mail merge via linking with Microsoft Word a word processor package.
* Define search boxes that enable the user to quickly identify specific records.