Exploring the Spatial Density of Strategy Models in a Realistic Distributed Interactive Application
Marshall, D and Delaney, Declan and McLoone, Seamus and Ward, Tomas (2004) Exploring the Spatial Density of Strategy Models in a Realistic Distributed Interactive Application. In: 8th IEEE International Symposium on Distributed Simulation and Real Time Applications, October 2004, Budapest, Hungary.
As Distributed Interactive Applications (DIAs) become increasingly more prominent in the video game industry they must scale to accommodate progressively more users and maintain a globally consistent worldview. However, network constraints, such as bandwidth, limit the amount of communication allowed between users. Several methods of reducing network communication packets, while maintaining consistency, exist. These include dead reckoning and the hybrid strategy-based modelling approach. This latter method combines a short-term model such as dead reckoning with a long-term strategy model of user behaviour. By employing the strategy that most closely represents user behaviour, a reduction in the number of network packets that must be transmitted to maintain consistency has been shown. In this paper a novel method for constructing multiple long-term strategies using dead reckoning and polygons is described. Furthermore the algorithms are implemented in an industry-proven game engine known as Torque. A series of experiments are executed to investigate the effects of varying the spatial density of strategy models on the number of packets that need to be transmitted to maintain the global consistency of the DIA. The results show that increasing the spatial density of strategy models allows a higher consistency to be achieved with fewer packets using the hybrid strategy-based model than with pure dead reckoning. In some cases, the hybrid strategy-based model completely replaces dead reckoning as a means of communicating updates.
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