Demigod: Monday

By on April 20, 2009 3:27:59 PM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

Frogboy

Join Date 03/2001
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Tomorrow will mark the 1st week since Demigod’s official launch.  The newer reviews that have come out since the initial launch have come back to more where we’re expecting:

Firing Squad: 84 of 100

http://www.firingsquad.com/games/demigod_review/page6.asp

 

Cosmos Gaming: 95 out of 100

http://www.cosmosgaming.com/articles.php?id=1963&articletype=review

GameFocus: 92 out of 100 and an Editor’s Choice

http://www.gamefocus.ca/?nav=reviewCard&fid=7318

Where are we at?

First, one of the side benefits from the day 0 debacle is that I have fallen in love with a new program called GameRanger. It’s hard to remember but back in the Total Annihilation days, playing multiplayer involved knowing someone’s IP address and trying to connect to their game via IRC or something else. But then program like TEN and Kali and such came out and made things better.  But if you’re having problems with getting multiplayer going, I have to say, GameRanger works pretty well and it is doing basically the same thing we’re in the process of setting up.

Now right now, Demigod, as a game, is awesome.  Demigod, as an on-line service, however, sucks ass. It works fine for what I dare say most people but for others, it's just awful. Our job is to make sure it works fine for everyone. 

Talk about being babes in the woods. Sins of a Solar Empire’s network “infrascture” to this day involves 1 server.  Demigod’s involves dozens of servers now because of so many people using it. I guess it turns out most people playing Sins of a Solar Empire were playing it single player.

So what is the cause of our woes?

Let’s talk about peer-to-peer networking.  Here’s how it works:

image

Everyone has to connect to everyone. And unfortunately, not everyone can.  Worse, the connection servers we’ve had have been just being pounded by the number of requests.

Why wasn’t this found in beta? There’s two reasons:

1) Our beta group was overwhelmingly located in North America and they didn’t have problems connecting to each other. That is still the case now.  But people in Europe tend to have problems connecting to people in the United States.

2. Our synthetic stress tests on the server were through pretty ideal connections where connections were pretty easy.

So what can do do about this?

 

 

 

image

 

This is a bit of an over simplification but you get the idea. We have the connections pass through these proxy servers on-route to the other player. The geographic location of these servers is key to keep users from getting lag.  I’m told it shouldn’t take very long to get this part going.

It’s not all bad

I will say that the current system does a pretty decent job.  Once we were able to throw enough servers at the problem we’re seeing a lot of successful MP games.  But that does little good for the people who just can’t connect and no amount of port forwarding is going to solve the case where two players just can’t talk to each other.

Expectations

My expectation is that by the end of this week, the connectivity problem will be largely solved. I hopefully won’t have to eat my words. But the fact that things like GameRanger works so well indicates that there’s little problem with Demigod itself but rather the service infrastructure behind it.

Stay tuned.

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April 20, 2009 3:37:48 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting ,
Now right now, Demigod, as a game, is awesome.  Demigod, as an on-line service, however, sucks ass. 

LOL

Keep it up Brad, cheers for the update and info.

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April 20, 2009 3:41:47 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Will the proxies also be put up for people in the US who are having issues connecting?

And it sounds like you guys are expecting that to sort of put a nail in the coffin on the connection issues? Obviously it probably wouldn't be 100% but in the upper 90s?

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April 20, 2009 3:44:21 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Always good to hear from people at the top.

Although I am one of the lucky ones in North America who has relatively few connection problems, I still await this weeks updates with bated breath and high hopes of resolving these technical issues.

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April 20, 2009 3:47:21 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Great work you're doing here.

 

However I do have one question for you Brad. Where are you thinking about setting up these proxy servers? I hope you will put at least one in USA. I know one will be in Europe of course for all the DSL oriented users.

 

Would this help people say in college dorms like myself? I can connect most of the time via Pantheon, but never in Custom Games. (I know the college routers and what not you can't get past)

I do also use a VPN service from Your-Freedom.net to get by the firewalls here at school for p2p, and other stuff like that.

 

Thanks Brad! Keep it up!

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April 20, 2009 3:52:41 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Thx for the update  and not forget that server are still making matches crowded with ai bots from start

50%+ teams are always bots, start get annoying play with mostly bots.

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April 20, 2009 3:55:13 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Lol at Gamerangers, at the moment i write this 54 of the 122 rooms in GameRanger are being used for Demigod. So this turns out to be a big win for GameRanger

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April 20, 2009 4:08:16 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Hi,

Glad to hear you are addressing this. I hope the debacle has not hurt sales too badly. (Want to make sure Stardock has loadsa cash for Elemental development budget!)

I am a bit surprised to hear that you need dozens of servers. Out of interest, what volume of sales has Demigod had, roughly?

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April 20, 2009 4:10:41 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I still have to throw in that Gameranger can still experience some of the Impulse problems.

Good to know that you admit and are fixing the problem.  I just hope you are not using DELL servers.  Haha.

Thought I hope most of this will be up before the end of the week, so it will not be pushed past the weekend again if you are running late.

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April 20, 2009 4:29:16 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

How about split up the regions like you mention so USA can only play with USA guys.  Europe can only play with Europe, etc.

I think most people don't care about playing internationally especially with the lag.

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April 20, 2009 4:29:29 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Thanks for the updates

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April 20, 2009 4:32:06 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Blitz64,
How about split up the regions like you mention so USA can only play with USA guys.  Europe can only play with Europe, etc.

I think most people don't care about playing internationally especially with the lag.

 

I have Euro friends I play with online Although I would think that the Proxy from Europe has decent routing to the proxy located in the USA. Yes there will be lag, but enough to really aggrivate?

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April 20, 2009 4:36:10 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Is the proxy going to be an optional thing we turn on, or will it get used automatically?

 

Keep up the good work.

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April 20, 2009 4:39:21 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Being that I'm the guy in Australia...

Woot!

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April 20, 2009 4:43:02 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Thanks FB.  Everyone does realize the you and SD do more communications in a week, and give FAR more info (and honest info to boot) than most companies do the ENTIRE life of a game.    It's just too bad you and SD are going to have to visit the Proxtolagist so much this week. . .

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April 20, 2009 4:46:13 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Yep, as a game, I love it and when multiplayer works it's a ton of addictive brain candy. When I get in a MP game and no one drops, it runs well. However, it's still a slow chore to get into games. Frankly, it just takes too long. Also, when a player drops and gets replaced by AI, that team is at a supreme disadvantage because AI is just terrible unfortunately.

 

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April 20, 2009 4:49:12 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Blitz64,
How about split up the regions like you mention so USA can only play with USA guys.  Europe can only play with Europe, etc.

I think most people don't care about playing internationally especially with the lag.

Perhaps that is in order to have one Pantheon instead of several. Although Blizzard did well its 4 different leader boards generally segmented by region.

I like the concept of a unified world competition.

Globalization is on the march

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April 20, 2009 4:56:08 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Eternal_Silence,
Yep, as a game, I love it and when multiplayer works it's a ton of addictive brain candy. When I get in a MP game and no one drops, it runs well. However, it's still a slow chore to get into games. Frankly, it just takes too long. Also, when a player drops and gets replaced by AI, that team is at a supreme disadvantage because AI is just terrible unfortunately.

 

Sadly, the AI is better than most players that were there in the first place.

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April 20, 2009 5:12:23 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Frogboy.. you are perhaps the most entune person in the video game industry.  Most of what you've said is pretty much dead on.  Good to know that you guys at least know what the heck is going on.  What I am going to do for my part is give you guys a list of the more common problems in a more precise succint way.  Out of reading most of these forums, most people are expressing their problems with too much emotion without really displaying the cause of the problem.  Expect a post shortly. 

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April 20, 2009 5:27:29 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Thanks for the update, stardock continues to impress.

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April 20, 2009 5:30:27 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Any updates on the Custom Games list? It hangs for 20-30 seconds whenever it autorefreshes, then it's time to refresh again, so it lags perpetually.

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April 20, 2009 5:31:07 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

[quote who="Eternal_Silence" comment="16"]
Blitz64reply 9How about split up the regions like you mention so USA can only play with USA guys.  Europe can only play with Europe, etc.I think most people don't care about playing internationally especially with the lag.
Perhaps that is in order to have one Pantheon instead of several. Although Blizzard did well its 4 different leader boards generally segmented by region.
I like the concept of a unified world competition.
Globalization is on the march[/quote]

I tottaly agree here. I have been in several games and about 5/10 of those the person that drops is replaced with an AI that ends up performing 2x etter than the person.

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April 20, 2009 5:39:34 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Awesome news.  Love seeing these updates!

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April 20, 2009 5:40:03 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Loving it!  I get pretty fiesty on the boards from time to time (hey, I get frustrated!), but updates like this are driving home a deep and abiding respect for Stardock. 

NIIIICE! 

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April 20, 2009 5:47:23 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Blitz64,
How about split up the regions like you mention so USA can only play with USA guys.  Europe can only play with Europe, etc.

I think most people don't care about playing internationally especially with the lag.
Dunno how that would go. I know I had a lot of fun playing people who I knew were from Europe. Although I don't know where most of the people I play are from...

 

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April 20, 2009 5:49:46 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Maybe I am a bit dense here, but what problems areas will the proxy servers address?  Here is what I am hoping will be addressed:

  1. Inability to even get into a game in the lobby.   Of the 25 games listed in the lobby, I can only get into a handful.  When I try to get into the other games, I get a cannot connect type error.
  2. Once I do find a game I can get into, the connection negotiation takes an eternity.
  3. Once into the Demigod game lobby, people will have zero pings (bad connection) or yellow pings (bad connection).

 

Will all these areas be addressed by adding the proxy servers?  (crosses fingers)

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