The Tech Behind Your Favorite Computer Games

Caption: Random number generators are more interesting than you might at first think.

So many of us love unwinding with a computer game at the end of a long day, but how many of us know about the technology that goes into them? There are likely hundreds of developers behind some of your favorite titles, who work tirelessly to ensure the game works without a glitch. Whether it’s the seemingly simple slot game, or totally mystifying virtual reality, here’s how the magic behind your favorite computer games actually works.

Fascinated by Virtual Reality? Learn All About Oculus Rift

Although Oculus Rift first started as a gaming device, it’s had many different applications since then, including helping the differently-abled to navigate the world more safely. However, we’re here for the gaming application.

This particular technology had humble beginnings, requiring a Kickstarter to get it ready for sale. Few people expected that it would be sold just two years later to Mark Zuckerberg for a staggering $2 billion dollars. The reason? The amazing technology behind it.

Oculus Rift is a Virtual Reality headset, with two screens, one for each of your eyes. These screens feature a lens over the top of each, creating a 3D effect and subtly reshaping the original screen to provide a more lifelike effect. The screens themselves cover an 180 degree field, which creates a more lifelike sensation, using your peripheral vision. Within the goggles are tracking sensors, which monitor head and eye movements, allowing the images to move exactly as the real world would.

The headset reacts to these movements within 20 milliseconds; this period of time is crucial, as it is just quick enough that your brain cannot process a time delay. If they reacted any slower than this then the screen would appear to lag, which not only ruins the lifelike quality, but can even cause motion sickness. All of this technology is finally combined with a frame rate of at least 60 frames per second. Together, this allows your brain to feel like you are truly immersed in another world.

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Like Slot Machines? Learn All About Random Number Generators

Random Number Generators are the mechanics behind almost all of your favorite slot games. Although they sound pretty self explanatory, they’re much more interesting than you might think. There are two distinctly different types of random number generators and generally slot machines fall into the algorithm based category. Interestingly, this category of RNG isn’t truly random, but is certainly random enough for gaming purposes. The machine selects numbers based on a mathematical algorithm and a ‘seed’ value, which is usually derived from a mouse click in the case of slot games.

For those interested, the other type of RNG has to create a certain amount of entropy, so it collects vast sets of random data and uses them as seed values. This type of RNG requires hundreds of gigabytes of storage, so it’s easy to see why these are used very infrequently.

Of course, if you’re not convinced of the randomness of a slot game’s number generation, then why not test it out yourself? You can usually find a way to try it out for free first. Vegas Slots Online shows the best current deals available for online slot games, including free spins.

In order to test for true randomness you’ll need around 1000 spins. Allocate each of the possible outcomes on the slot machine a number, write down and tear up the same number on pieces of paper, then pull them out of a bucket 1000 times and spin the slot 1000 times. Use a chi square calculator to work out how similarly they align. Of course, not all of us have the time or the inclination for this, and luckily Vegas Slots Online also test the credentials of all of the sites that they list and ensures they are TST certified, so the chances are, your slot game really is truly random.

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