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Update sending rate

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Hi all, I''m writing my first network game and have some questions. How often or how do I determine how many position updates per second to send to the other players? How often do I send a guaranteed delivery position update?

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Start with what you know:

What is the bandwidth?
What is the topology?
What is the packet overhead?
How much do I need for overhead (surfing the web, chatting, re-transmissions, etc)?
What data goes into each kind of packet?

Now, you know how much the different variables will cost you.

Now, answer some more questions:

How fast do entities move in the game?
How much out-of-place is it acceptable to see entities?
How quickly do other players need to see changes/movements that I make?
How long do I have to wait to get an entity placed in the right spot if I drop an update packet?

Now, you should have enough data to pertain to your, particular game. Play with the numbers, and make sure it all fits in the appropriate bandwidth budget. Figure that users actually have about 3 kB/s for a modem upstream, and 10 kB/s for broadband upstream.

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