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Hello all I just signed up for this website but I couldn't find an answer to my question so I figured I would make it, so I'm still rather new to gave development and have been looking at using gamesparks www.gamesparks.com , It has hosting for backend as well as real-time servers but I was wondering if anyone here had used it before or had used it with the Unreal engine as I am still trying to learn everything about it but I'm mostly not sure how it stacks up aginst say proton/playfab or Amazons Gameloft servers ? 

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All of those are specific services that give you specific capabilities. Your question sounds a little bit like "which is best: a pick-up truck, a freight train car, or a steel shipping container?"

Which one you should choose (if any) depends entirely on the specific requirements of your actual implemented game, as well as how much money you're prepared to invest into the effort.

If you're just starting game development, you do not need to worry about those services for quite some time, because there's a long path from "being able to make your first game" all the way to "actually shipping a multiplayer game that is interesting enough to have players other than your friends."

When you actually have understand all the bits and pieces that go together to make an integrated game / system like that, you will be much more able to read the specific descriptions of the services, and figure out which (if any) matches the needs of your actual game. If, at that point, you have specific questions, we'll be happy to answer them with specifics!

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That's a great point and thanks for the fast reply its just I know the game I want to make is going to be multiplayer so I'm trying to figure out the networking and things even if atm I'm just learning how to use them for the future but I figure the more I know about these kinds of things know the less time I waste in "real" development of a product. So I just figured if someone on here had used gamesparks and found that it just couldn't keep up on a real time fast paced game then I have no reason to try and learn about it anyway. 

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There are two main models for FPS games:

- Clients "host" games and matches are made on a matchmaker with NAT introduction

- Servers are run by the game publisher, and all players connect to those game servers (Overwatch, Gears of War, etc)

For the actual gameplay, in Unreal Engine, you'll pretty much always use the Unreal networking code, because it's optimized for Unreal low-latency play. The role of a third party is then to do whatever you need around this, which may include just keeping account information, or may add guilds, commerce, leagues, etc. Separately, if you choose to pay for the servers as a publisher, then you also need some management of those real hardware servers, making them available to your sign-in/lobby, etc.

Because the Unreal model is "one process runs the game, and all clients connect to that process" (be it client-hosted, or centrally hosted,) then the question of "keeping up" entirely comes down to your game process, and the hardware you choose to run it on. The third-party services don't really affect that bit.

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Hi GamingR,

Personally I believe it's never to early to consider backend services. It can go a lot smoother development wise to think about and even implement it at the early stages. Something as simple as considering what your backend will be while coding can make all the difference.

We have a guide to our Unreal Real-Time services here - https://docs.gamesparks.com/tutorials/real-time-services/unreal-real-time-guide.html 

Whats unique about the GameSparks sdk is it uses a web socket architecture which keeps an open connection between the player and the backend. Meaning lighter packets (Faster responses and requests from client to server) and a constant flow of data which means we have brilliant messages and responses model that keeps players updated at all times. All in all its a convenient system that's a lot like a real-time connection. This means that the server and the client can figure out when they're not connected too, which is a huge plus our competitors don't have.

The real-time needs a lot of trial and error. You'll have to program replication logic from scratch including animations, movement and rotation. Unreal's native networking layer does this for you to a degree. However with our RT services you don't need to find a place to host a server, we host it for you and move data around. Essentially GameSparks Real-Time means everyone has their own map, and changes happen to that map via packets from different clients in the same session. We cover the pros and cons in out docs linked above. 

You can also check out our product overview as GameSparks can cover all of your backed needs, not just Real-Time -  https://www.gamesparks.com/product/

GameSparks is completely free to evaluate and prototype with, so you can even download the SDK and play around with it to see if it's the backend for you. If you decide to use us and you're an Indie or Student, you should apply for the Indie & student programme which gives you your first 100,000 MAUs per month completely free! You can apply for that here - https://www.gamesparks.com/pricing/

If you have any questions at all about GameSparks, some specific needs you want to run by us or just need some help with something, please don't hesitate to get in touch with our support team via https://support.gamesparks.net/support/home We'd be happy to help in any way we can! 

Clare
GameSparks Community Manager

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