Online gaming has created more than another set of games for computer gamers. An entire geek sub-culture has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry with many millions of players. There's just something about playing the types of games while meeting new like-minded friends, competitive foes and bystanders in an online adventure that is just so different from real life. If you want to survive in First Person Shooters or dig deep into the immersive world of a sandbox game, keep reading for information on how your network delivers gameplay and what you can do to stay efficient on the Internet.
Why Are Internet Requirements Important For Gamers?
Playing an online game means that your computer needs to talk to the game's server on a regular basis at a set speed. The game server accepts virtually real-time information from different players and sends updates about other players and the game environment to all players at the same time. This requires a set of exacting standards for both the game server and the player.
The gaming world is still a business world, so online gaming technology is designed to handle real-time updates with as little computer network stress as possible. The size of the information being sent is different for every game, but most games are designed to be played on basic broadband Internet.
The speed definition of broadband Internet access changes often, but the old standard of least 4 megabits per second (mbps) download, 1 megabits per second (mbps) upload is acceptable for playing games. You may want something faster to share Internet access with other tasks such as downloading or watching videos.
Lag Is The Enemy Of All Gamers
If your Internet connection is too slow, you won't be able to transfer information between yourself and the server fast enough. For many residential Internet connections, even the lowest and cheapest definitions of broadband (around 1mbps) can receive game information fast enough. Unfortunately, the upload speeds may be too slow to send your information.
If your upload is too slow, the game won't be updated with your information. In order to move around in the game, your Internet basically needs to tell the server what it's doing, then be acknowledged by the server in time. Instead of asking for permission to move in the first place, your character can move around and will only be put back in place if action information isn't received on time.
A slow upload can delay your computer's ability to update the server, and a slow download can delay acknowledgements and other information. This can result in your character running in place, teleporting back to the original location with no changes made or the game not changing at all.
A faster Internet connection can solve this problem, but there are other network concerns to consider. If you're using wireless Internet, stop. Wireless Internet is acceptable if no other option is available, but wireless signals are like water spraying from a hose. Some of the water can make the target destination, but some will go in other directions. Wireless is a bit more orderly than water, but the lost information has to be sent again if lost, which can add a delay.
Even if you have the fastest residential Internet available in the world, downloading and uploading can still slow down your gameplay. If you or someone in your household is addicted to downloading every movie, game and song they come across, there needs to be rules about Internet usage. Set a fair limit for everyone.
Contact a computer networking professional from a company like Advanced Business Systems to examine your network and design more efficient ways to play your games without interruption.