Once you’ve enabled the Online Play feature and launched an online game, it’s time to play! The Host is the player that launched the online game by sending the invitation. The Guest is the player that received the invitation. The number of players is always 2 for an online game, (one player on each device). If there are more friends or family members at either device, they will play as a team.
Once the game has launched, the Host will see a screen similar to the one shown here for the iPad. The iPhone version is organized differently, but all of the same information is there. The host decides how many cards will be in the game by tapping the Matches button. (And since Voice Chat is likely present on at this point, you can always ask your guest how many cards to play!) There is also a message that appears briefly that indicating the role for each player. Finally, the Host taps Play when ready and the game will start on both devices
The Guest will see a similar screen with a few differences. This is a screenshot from an iPhone, and the iPad version will be similar. The Play and Matches buttons are disabled for the Guest player. (The Host selects the number of Matches and starts the game with their Play button.)
Close Online Play Button
Both Host and Guest players have two new buttons. The first is the Online Play button with a red “X” in the middle to indicate that tapping it will close the Online Play session. Tapping the button to close the online game will pop up the prompt shown here to make sure that you really wanted to leave the game.
Voice Chat Button
The second button is the “telephone” button to indicate that Voice Chat is enabled and connected. The telephone button will pulse slightly to indicate that the chat is active as well. If the Game Center frameworks cannot maintain the voice chat due to poor network conditions for example, the button will stop pulsing and a brief message will display in the middle of the screen to indicate if the other party has left the chat. To intentionally stop the voice chat, tap the button and the connection will be temporarily closed and a red “X” will appear in the middle of the telephone button. Tap the button again to enable the voice chat again. Often, if the voice chat is disconnected due to poor network conditions, it can be reestablished by tapping the button to close and then again to reopen after a few seconds.
Whew! Enough of all of the connection stuff… Let’s Play! The Host starts the game, but the Guest gets to take the first turn. The gameplay is identical to a non-networked game, the players take turns and the rules are the same. The Guest begins by flipping two cards (and the cards flip the same on both players’ screens). If the cards don’t match, the cards flip back face down and it becomes the Host’s turn. If the cards did match, the cards are gathered to the Guest’s stack, and the Guest’s turn continues. The players continue taking turns until all the cards are matched and the player with the most card pairs wins.