This Guidance demonstrates how developers can build a Friends list system for their game using Amazon GameSparks and Amazon DynamoDB. Friends lists are key to driving social engagement in games, enabling players to keep track of their in-game friends and engage with them in gameplay activities. This Guidance provides support for setting a display name, sending friend requests, accepting or rejecting requests, and retrieving a list of friends for a player. Developers can use the provided tooling to deploy the sample code and resources into their AWS accounts.

Architecture Diagram

Download the architecture diagram PDF 

Well-Architected Pillars

The AWS Well-Architected Framework helps you understand the pros and cons of the decisions you make when building systems in the cloud. The six pillars of the Framework allow you to learn architectural best practices for designing and operating reliable, secure, efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable systems. Using the AWS Well-Architected Tool, available at no charge in the AWS Management Console, you can review your workloads against these best practices by answering a set of questions for each pillar.

The architecture diagram above is an example of a Solution created with Well-Architected best practices in mind. To be fully Well-Architected, you should follow as many Well-Architected best practices as possible.

  • GitHub is used to host the source code repository of the Guidance, where you can post issues and request additional functionality to continuously improve the supporting processes. 

    Read the Operational Excellence whitepaper 
  • To protect resources in this Guidance, you must set up an AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) user or role with the appropriate permissions to the services before you deploy. 

    All stored data is stored in DynamoDB and is encrypted through AWS Key Management Service (AWS KMS).

    The resources deployed by this Guidance are not exposed to the internet and can only be accessed by the public through the GameSparks game backend.

    Read the Security whitepaper 
  • All of the computing within the Guidance is stateless, allowing for a reliable, application-level architecture. When there are changes in demand, GameSparks, Lambda, and DynamoDB will automatically scale to meet the new demand.

    DynamoDB has a point-in-time recovery feature that is enabled by default within the Guidance. This feature allows you to restore to any given second in the preceding 35 days.

    Lambda functions in one AWS account in one Region share the concurrency limit. If one function exceeds the concurrent limit, other functions are prevented from invoking the Lambda service. Check and adjust the reserved concurrency for the Lambda functions deployed in your AWS account prior to your game receiving production traffic.

    Read the Reliability whitepaper 
  • Latency from the game client to the game backend is not usually a concern for the Friends functionality. However, GameSparks game backends can be deployed to several AWS Regions, and you should determine where to deploy your game backend depending on where most of your players reside.

    Read the Performance Efficiency whitepaper 
  • Within this Guidance, data transfer out only occurs through GameSparks, which does not include a cost for data transfer. Data transfer across AWS Regions is avoided completely by centralizing all resources in a single AWS Region.

    GameSparks, used extensively within this Guidance, includes pricing based on Client API calls, Cloud Code API calls, and player data storage, all of which are kept to a minimum. Additionally, this architecture uses serverless services so that you only pay for the resources you consume.

    DynamoDB is used as the primary data storage for the Guidance. The DynamoDB on-demand capacity mode is used to ensure that customers only pay for what they use.

    Read the Cost Optimization whitepaper 
  • All of the services used within the Guidance are managed services, thus minimizing the amount of hardware that is needed to provision for deployment. 

    Read the Sustainability whitepaper 

Implementation Resources

The sample code is a starting point. It is industry validated, prescriptive but not definitive, and a peek under the hood to help you begin. 

AWS Architecture


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