A hybrid peer-to-peer middleware plugin for an existing client/server massively multiplayer online game

Croucher, Darren Armstrong (2014-04)

Thesis (MEng)--Stellenbosch University, 2014.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Massively Multiplayer Online Games are large virtual worlds co-inhabited by players over the Internet. As up to thousands of players can be simultaneously connected to the game, the server and network architectures are required to scale e ciently. The traditional client/server model results in a heavy nancial burden for operation of the server. Various alternative architectures have been proposed as a replacement for the traditional model, but the adoption of these alternatives are slow as they present their own set of challenges. The proposed hybrid system is based on many di erent architectures and peer-topeer concepts that were reviewed in the literature. It aims to provide a compromise for existing, commercially successful MMOGs to introduce peer-to-peer components into their systems with no requirement of modi cation to their server or client software. With the system's design presented, the middleware software is implemented and deployed in a real, controlled environment alongside an Ultima Online game server and its clients. The movement game mechanic was distributed amongst the peers while the others remained the responsiblity of the server. A number of performance experiments are performed to measure the e ects of the modi ed system over the original client/server system on bandwidth, latency, and hardware impact. The results revealed an increase in the server bandwidth usage by 35%, slave bandwidth usage by 17% and supernode bandwiwdth usage by 3111%. The latencies of distributed server mechanics were reduced by up to 94%, while the non-distributed latencies were increased by up to 6000%. These results suggested that a system with absolutely no modi cation to the server is unlikely to provide the desired bene ts. However, with 2 minor modi cations to the server, the middleware is able to reduce both server load and player latencies. The server bandwidth can be reduced by 39%, while the supernode's bandwidth is increased only by 1296%. The distributed latencies maintain their reduction while non-distributed latencies remain unchanged from the C/S system.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Massiewe Multispeler Aanlyn Speletjies (MMAS) is groot virtuele w^erelde op die Internet wat bewoon word deur spelers. Aangesien duisende spelers gelyktydig kan inskakel op die speletjie word daar verwag van die bediener en netwerk argitektuur om e ektief te skaleer om die groot hoeveelhede spelers te kan hanteer. Die traditionele kli ent/bediener model lei tot 'n groot nansi ele las vir die operateur van die bediener. Verskeie alternatiewe argitekture is al voorgestel om die tradisionele model te vervang, maar die aanvaarding en in gebruik neem van hierdie alternatiewe (soos eweknie-netwerke) is 'n stadige proses met sy eie stel uitdagings. Die voorgestelde hibriede stelsel is gebaseer op baie verskillende argitektuur- en eweknie konsepte wat in die literatuur oorweeg is. Die doel is om 'n kompromie vir bestaande komersieel suksesvolle MMASs te verskaf om eweknie komponente te implementeer sonder om die die bediener- of kli ent sagteware aan te pas. Met hierdie stelsel se ontwerp word die middelware sagteware ge mplementeer en gebruik in 'n regte, dog gekontroleerde omgewing, tesame met 'n Ultima Online bediener en sy kli ente. Die beweging speletjie meganisme word versprei onder die eweknie netwerk en die ander meganismes bly die verantwoordelikheid van die bediener. 'n Aantal eksperimente is ingespan om die e ek van die hibriede stelsel te meet op die oorspronklike kli ent/bediener stelsel, in terme van bandwydte, vertraging en impak op hardeware. Die resultate toon 'n toename van 35% in bediener-, 17% in slaaf-, en 3111% in supernodus bandwydte gebruik. Die vertraging van verspreide bediener meganismes neem af met tot 94%, terwyl onverspreide vertragings toeneem met tot 6000%. Hierdie resultate wys dat 'n stelsel wat geen aanpassing maak aan die bediener sagteware onwaarskynlik die gewenste voordele sal lewer. Deur egter 2 klein aanpassings toe te laat tot die bediener, is dit moontlik vir die hibriede stelsel om data las van die bediener en die speler se vertraging te verminder. Die bediener bandwydte kan met 39% verminder word, terwyl die supernodus bandwydte slegs met 1296% toeneem. Die verpreide vertragings handhaaf hul vermindering, terwyl die onverspreide vertragings onveranderd bly van die C/S stelsel.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/86254
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