Multiplayer Edge Cases

Multiplayer Edge Cases

Multiplayer gaming can be a real pain in the ***, right?

Tabish Ahmed
Tabish Ahmed

November 7, 2023

At Playroom, we are currently conducting Playtests across various games. Mind you, we have internally developed over 10 game prototypes to test different game scenarios and complexities before releasing the SDK. In no means we say that we solved everything but we know what problems are frequent across games.

Despite our extensive efforts, certain recurring questions continue to emerge from developers both internally and externally:

  1. I am connected, but I can't see everyone in the lobby.

  2. How to handle someone joining the game in the middle of a live session.

  3. Dealing with a surge of 100+ users attempting to join a game with only an 8-person lobby.

  4. What happens if someone is still in the lobby when the host starts the game?

  5. Restarting the game while keeping everyone in the same room.

  6. If a player drops out mid-game and it was their turn, how do we continue?

  7. If the host drops out, who gains control?

  8. What to do if a player receives a call and gets disconnected from the game – how can they reconnect?

  9. Managing a queue of players waiting for an overfilled room, and how to allow others to join.

  10. How can I remove a user who is abusing the system?

These are just few example, we knew these challenges were part of the multiplayer game development territory but never handled on the infrastructure level. Its usually left on developers to figure it out and resolve themselves.

I've witnessed similar issues on a much larger scale before. When you embark on building a multiplayer game, the multitude of edge cases you need to handle becomes overwhelming. These challenges only reveal themselves during playtesting.

Now, picture a small to mid-sized studio. How can they rigorously test their game at scale? And how long would it take them to resolve all these multiplayer issues? Even in my experience with massive teams, I've observed people not dedicating enough time or lacking the necessary resources to thoroughly test the game's scalability.

At Playroom, we are learning continuously and we aim to address these issues at the foundational level so that developers don't have to invest significant time and resources every time they create a new multiplayer game.

Here's to a brighter and accessible future for multiplayer gaming!