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The Taub Faculty of Computer Science Events and Talks

Haifux Club: Massivizing OpenTTD: Distributed Computing Challenges and Quality Time
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Prof. Alexandru Losup (Delft University of Technology)
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Monday, 03.06.2013, 18:30
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Taub 6
Hundreds of online games entertain over 250,000,000 online gamers in a maturing global market of over 30 billion Euros. A popular game genre is Real Time Strategy (RTS), which includes games such as StarCraft II (one of the best-selling games of 2010). Although Real-Time Strategy (RTS) games already entertain hundreds of millions of online players, the current games do not scale. For example, even popular RTS games such as the StarCraft series support in the same game instance only up to 16 players and up to only 3-400 moving units. We present the rationale for and the design of a massively multiplayer online RTS (MMORTS) game, OpenTTD@large. OpenTTD@large is a derivative work from the popular open-source game OpenTTD, which in turn has derived from the economic simulator Transport Tycoon Deluxe. We begin by analyzing the current technical and design limitations of OpenTTD--although this game can service its target audience of 8-16 online players very well, scaling it to even hundreds of players is currently not possible. We further present an approach to co-scale the platform and the design of OpenTTD, towards the OpenTTD@large MMORTS platform. We present here the new game design and three elements of our approach: a new approach for trading-off consistency for latency to support the future scalable game world, a game analytics back-end to support the future social component of the game design, and a mobile offloading system to support the future mobile component of the game platform. (Warning: OpenTTD@large is ongoing work, and has many research and technical unknowns.)

The talk will be given in English.

TEAM: Alexandru Losup (Project Lead/Pricipal Investigator), Otto Visser (Lead Dev/Lead Valorization), Siqi Shen (Lead Researcher), Yong Guo (Lead Researcher), Alexandru Olteanu (Lead Researcher), Marcin Biczak (Lead Dev/Researcher), Lucas van Dijk (Dev).