Conference Paper

An empirical evaluation of TCP performance in online games.

DOI: 10.1145/1178823.1178830 Conference: Proceedings of the International Conference on Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology, ACE 2006, Hollywood, California, USA, June 14-16, 2006
Source: DBLP

ABSTRACT A fundamental design question to ask in the development of a network game is—Which transport protocol should be used—TCP, UDP, or some other protocols? Seeking an ob- jective answer to the choice of communication protocol for MMORPGs, we assess whether TCP, a popular choice, is suitable for MMORPGs based on empirical evidence. To the best of our knowledge, this work is the first evaluation of transport protocol performance using real-life game traces. We analyze a 1, 356-million-packet trace from ShenZhou Online, a TCP-based, commercial, mid-sized MMORPG. Our analysis indicates that TCP is unwieldy and inappropri- ate for MMORPGs. This is due to four distinctive charac- teristics of MMORPG traffic: 1) tiny packets, 2) low packet rate, 3) application-limited traffic generation, and 4) bi- directional traffic. We show that because TCP was origi- nally designed for unidirectional and network-limited bulk data transfers, it cannot adapt well to MMORPG traffic. In particular, the window-based congestion control and the fast retransmit algorithm for loss recovery are ineffective. Fur- thermore, TCP is overkill, as not every game packet needs to be transmitted in a reliably and orderly manner. We also show that the degraded network performance did impact users' willingness to continue a game. Finally, we discuss guidelines in designing transport protocols for online games.

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    ABSTRACT: In this paper we present a user action specific modeling of network traffic in a Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG). We have performed measure-ments for each of the previously defined action categories for MMORPGs (Trading, Questing, Dungeons, Raiding, and Player versus Player Combat) and formed models based on the obtained traces. Models are implemented through mod-ification of Distributed Internet Traffic Generator, and ver-ified through comparison with real traffic. As a case study we use World of Warcraft.
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    ABSTRACT: Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPGs) are one of the most exciting and most rapidly expanding genres of online games. This survey presents state-of-the-art and current research efforts in measuring, characterizing, and modeling the player behavior and the network traffic, as well as the relationships between them. We also tabulate the measurement, modeling and analysis results regarding network traffic and player behavior found in literature, with key information regarding each dataset. Finally, we list currently confirmed claims and open research questions in the area of MMORPGs.
    Multimedia Systems 19(3). · 0.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This article points out some of the network issues found in Electronic Entertainment, especially the Quality of Service (QoS) issue. In order to achieve that, two papers describing these issues were analyzed and conclusions were made based on them. Since games have distinct needs from ordinary network applications (like Web Browsers) a short description of these needs is provided as well. Resumo. Este artigo destaca algumas quest˜ oes de redes de computadores em entretenimento eletrˆ onico, especialmente a quest˜ ao da qualidade de servico (QoS). Para fazer isso, dois artigos que descrevem tais quest˜ oes foram anali- sados e algumas conclus˜ oes foram obtidas. Devido ao fato que os jogos tem necessidades distintas de aplicac¸˜ oes de rede tradicionais (como os Web Brow- sers), uma descric¸˜ ao sucinta dessas necessidades tamb´ em ´ e fornecida. 1. Introduc ¸ ˜ ao

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