Title: Clustering players for load balancing in virtual worlds

Authors: Simon Rieche, Klaus Wehrle, Marc Fouquet, Heiko Niedermayer, Timo Teifel, Georg Carle

Addresses: Distributed Systems Group, RWTH Aachen University, Ahornstrasse 55, 52074 Aachen, Germany. ' Distributed Systems Group, RWTH Aachen University, Ahornstrasse 55, 52074 Aachen, Germany. ' Computer Networks and Internet Group, University of Tubingen, Sand 13, 72076 Tubingen, Germany. ' Computer Networks and Internet Group, University of Tubingen, Sand 13, 72076 Tubingen, Germany. ' Computer Networks and Internet Group, University of Tubingen, Sand 13, 72076 Tubingen, Germany. ' Network Architectures and Services Group, Technical University of Munich, Boltzmannstrasse 3, 85748 Munchen, Germany

Abstract: In current Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs) the distribution of load is not distributed dynamically. But players tend to concentrate in certain regions of the game world and cause overload conditions. Therefore we propose the use of structured Peer-to-Peer technology for the server infrastructure of the MMOGs to improve the reliability and scalability. Previous work segmented the game work into rectangular areas but often split a group of players to different servers. This work presents a cluster-based P2P approach, which is able to dynamically adapt to the current state of the game and handle uneven distributions of players. We show through simulation, also with traces from real online games, that the cluster-based approach performs better than the previous P2P-based system.

Keywords: MMOGs; massively multiplayer online games; MMORPG; clustering; load balancing; P2P; peer-to-peer; server infrastructure; computer games; internet.

DOI: 10.1504/IJAMC.2008.022220

International Journal of Advanced Media and Communication, 2008 Vol.2 No.4, pp.351 - 363

Published online: 23 Dec 2008 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article