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M4573R

Matchmaking server

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I plan on making a game with networking and I would like to let people join games over the internet. I'd use a peer to peer architecture, but I would still need a server somewhere that would keep track of who is hosting a game. I have no clue about any of the details concerned with doing that. Are there servers I can rent? What do I run on it? How do games on Steam do it?

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The easiest/cheapest option would probably be to rent a web server (a few $ to $10 per month for cheap one). Write a PHP script (or any web server language) that manages a database of clients.
Then your client can send HTTP requests to add themselves to this master list, and to find other people on the list.

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So I can learn PHP, but I've taken a couple networking classes, but haven't gone over http requests from c++.

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The Forum FAQ actually pretty much answers these questions.

I believe Steam comes with a matchmaking service built in, if you want to use it. You may want to download and take a look at the Steam SDK if it's available.

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Quote:
Original post by M4573R
but haven't gone over http requests from c++.
There's a free library called cURL that I'd recommend (instead of trying to implement the HTTP protocol manually) ;)

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It looks like you actually have to get approved by Valve to use their Steamworks SDK by sending them a demo of your game. It looks great though, they do all the work for you like authentication, NAT punch trough, server lists, etc. I'll definitely consider this once my game is further along.

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