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a server for MY game

mcoolmcool london, KYPosts: 122Member
I'm creating a game on UDK and i have some questons about the server. my game is a 3d mmorpg simliar to dayz/warz. I have some questions 
  1. Each map will consist of  30-60 players similar to dayz/ warz. should i use cloud servers or should i go for dedicated serves
  2. should I get a server that can hold hundreds of players or should I host multiple servers for each instances(map)
  3. also what should the specs be for the server if I'am looking to host 200 players per server. 
  4. how do other games make a profit from server hosting.. from what i know it would cost me around £80/month to host a server for 200 players. my game cost $20/£15 so 200 x £15 equals 3000. 3000- (80 x 12 months) equals 3000 - 960 which is 2040. does that mean if you buy my game I can only host for a year. how does minecraft,warz  manage to keep their servers running without additional income for years


  • QuizzicalQuizzical Posts: 17,346Member Epic

    I would very strongly advise that you not buy a physical server until after you have client and server programs working well enough that it's time to invite people in to test them.  For early testing with just a single client, you can use any ordinary desktop or laptop that you happen to have lying around.

    For the benefit of other readers, if you want some background on mcool, check this thread:

    He thinks that he can hire someone to program a game for him for $5500.

  • RidelynnRidelynn Fresno, CAPosts: 5,538Member Rare

    What I would do if I were you:

    Start your development using a second PC in your home as the server. Keep this on your local network, and you can then easily inspect traffic, see what effects your network code has on performance, and tweak it easily without having to deal with the additional variable of "The Internet". It also makes it easy to see exactly what bandwidth requirements your going to need, before you have to actually start paying for that bandwidth. This second PC has no special requirements, aside from that it needs a CPU and a network card - it won't be running any graphics or sound, and in fact, the worse performing this PC is the better, because it will make you optimize your server code all that much more, and your server code is important. I would advice a bit of planning ahead, if you are looking at renting servers (reading ahead), then it would be advisable to run an OS on this PC similar to that you plan on renting (Linux is a fairly universal, flexible, and free choice).

    When your ready to start testing with a few outside people, you have a couple of options:

    (*) Host it on your home ISP - may not be allowed depending on your ISP, and may not be advisable based on your available bandwidth. Upwards of a hundred people could probably connect fine through a typical home ISP account, which would be good enough for initial testing, while keeping the server local so you could do things like reboot it and quickly update the code. This obviously is not a permanent solution

    (*) Rent a server. Something like Godaddy or any number of hosts. Start with a Virtual Dedicated host - this gets you an isolated environment you can control, with a good amount of bandwidth, for a fraction of the price of dedicated servers. Once you start growing, it's easy to transfer these over to additional servers; be they Virtual Dedicated, or if needed, actual full blown Dedicated servers. You get full control over these machines, you just have to make a phone call to have someone push the Reset button if something goes screwy, and if you go over on your bandwidth it can get expensive. A Virutal Dedicated server can probably host 2-4 instance servers for your connection needs, and a full Dedicated server maybe upwards of 16-32 instances, depending on the host and the amount of bandwidth and power of the server you rent.

    (*) Look at something elastic, like Amazon EC2. This is probably the next step once you outgrow rented dedicated servers, as it will have a higher buy-in price, but lower operating overhead once you have sufficient clients connecting. Once your up around several thousands of players, this is where you need to start looking.

    You probably don't want to invest in your own datacenters unless you are looking at a multi-tens-of-millions dollar budget.

    Most of these "startup" games write their server code to be expandable, many instance servers like you are thinking, and it's easy to span those instance servers across several physical machines - they just pay for a years rent of XX number of machines at a time with their capitol money: they are paid up for that much capacity for at least a year or three (based on their level of capitol investment and their expected initial player base load), and if they experience rapid growth, it's not too hard to raise additional capitol to rent the additional servers, and your game is coded such that adding in more servers isn't too hard.

    That, or they use the clients computers as servers (most First Person Shooter games, Vindictus, etc) - they just host a "server finder" service (which is very low resource/bandwidth), but this makes it much easier for players to hack the game, since the server service is running on their machine and they can "see" the code running.

  • simonwest80simonwest80 AshfordPosts: 173Member

    LMAO - thanks Quiz that made 10minutes at work go that little bit faster.


    I would worry more about getting a  demo/engine sorted before worrying about the server - without knowing what network restrictions your game may have.  Also i would suggest you look at modding a game 1st of all, will allow you to get the demo out quicker.  But also as the above poster has stated any old PC on your network will be fine for testing 

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