Latency Management

The Etherscape is a fast paced game with real time combat in which movement is critical to survival. Furthermore, permadeath creates high stakes situations in which higher risk provides higher rewards. However, this results in a situation in which game latency can become a huge concern. Small amounts of internet lag can result in a very costly death. This page describes some of the tactics used to prevent this as much as possible.

Connectivity Responsibility

The Etherscape servers are hosted in geo-graphically distributed locations in order to allow players in most regions to get a decently low latency connection. As the game continues to scale up, we will spread out into more local regions. Furthermore, the servers are hosted in the Microsoft Azure cloud which provides very high connectivity guarantees. All this to say, we care about your gaming experience and are doing everything we can to give you as low a latency as possible. That being said, it is the players responsibility to have a high quality internet connection that can maintain real time access to our servers. We will do everything we can to prevent connectivity from hurting your gameplay, but there is only so much that can be achieved if you connection is not sufficient.

Lag Stasis

Lag stasis is a system that we have put in place with update to help prevent cases where connectivity lag would cause a character to die. When the server detects that no network messages have come from a player for 1 second it will put the player into lag stasis state. While in lag stasis, the player can still be damaged, but they cannot die. If after 5 seconds, the server has till not recieved a message from the player then they will be safely disconnected without their character dying. Alternatively, if the connectivity is restored before 5 seconds, then the health of the character is checked. If the health is below 30% then the player is sent to town to protect against suddenly dying after connectivity is restored. If the health is above 30%, then play resumes as normal. The purpose of this technique is to reduce the cases where players die by lag (especially during alpha development) while minimizing the surface area for exploits.

Character Recovery

As of update a mechanism was implemented to save dead characters to a backup database. This enables our support team to recover characters or their items in the event that death was caused by a gameplay bug. We will do this recover on a case by case basis at our sole discretion. The purpose of this feature is to minimize cases where game bugs cause massive losses to players. However, we will not make a habit of recovering characters because it is easy to exploit and require manual effort from our team which takes away from feature development. We appreciate your understanding in this matter as we do our best to support all players while maintaining a fair bar for everyone.

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