In the first month or so of Gimme Five’s release I started to receive a number of user reviews indicating that the game was crashing frequently. This was really frustrating considering the amount of testing that had been done on the game (many weeks prior to its release on the marketplace).
I looked at the stack traces published on App Hub and found these were not overly useful, so I added functionality in version 1.4 that allowed users to send the stack trace containing details of the crash directly through to me. The benefits of this were realised almost immediately:
Now I could see the exact cause of the game crashing as it was happening – not days later once details became available on App Hub.
Every single email I received pointed to a problem in OpenXLive’s achievement service.
On contacting OpenXLive they were able to spot the problem straight away.
I worked with them for weeks while I was provided with hot fixes that never solved the problem. Finally, I decided the only way was to remove OpenXLive completely and recreate the features that OpenXLive provided myself. The leaderboards were stripped out in favour of local statistics and the achievements were recreated locally in the game.
Thankfully I managed to do all of this before Gimme Five’s rating took too much of a beating.
Currently it still has an average rating above 4.5 in both the US and the UK.
Download figures are still disappointing, but at least the crash count is finally beginning to drop!
above: crash counts before and after removal of OpenXLive
based on 30 day rolling month