[ENet-discuss] Best practises for synchronizing states

Ricardo Andere de Mello quilombodigital at gmail.com
Wed Nov 24 19:45:34 PST 2010

Its a lot of more work, but if you really want a good game system, you
really should start thinking about creating a synchronized clock (that
worries about latency), a simulation system, and think about object updates
(and partial updates).
Once your clock is synchronized, you can send commands with timestamps and
the simulation can correctly correct the simulation. If you are using fmod
for 3d sound positioning, the simulation could do dead reckoning.


[]s, Ricardo

ps.: my fiancee did her master degree in teaching art to blind... next year
she we will do the phd, and I was strongly thinking about helping her to do
something related to technology and art for the blind. :)

2010/11/24 Philip Bennefall <philip at blastbay.com>

>  Hi all,
> This is a fairly lengthy email, so I apologize in advance.
> I am relatively new to ENet. I have integrated it in my game engine and
> have successfully written a game which is working perfectly. It is one of
> those finger twitching action games where speed is of the utmost importance
> and delay is the most evil thing in the world. The way I do it is to keep
> sending the entire state for a player to the other party unreliably. The
> other client then works out the events that "must" have occured by looking
> at the differences between the last known state and the new one. This is far
> from a perfect solution as it neither scales well nor provides for very
> readable code. Here's a summary of how I'm handling things:
> The game is a shooter where you run a round on a 1d grid firing rocks at
> your oponent's palace. When a rock hits a square on the other side it'll
> quickly begin piercing its way through until that section of the wall
> crumbles. During that time, the other player may use their hammer to defend
> the section.
> I wrote an internal layout description for myself before I started coding,
> which I then followed to ensure proper handling of all possible situations.
> ---Start of Internal Description---
> The way in which this game communicates over the network is fairly simple.
> The two players have a direct connection established between one another,
> and they send out their player state roughly 30 times a second. This player
> state contains the current x position, the current throwing position which
> is -1 if nothing is being thrown, and then a list of all the squares on that
> player's side. For each square, two values are stored. The first is the
> current resistance which is 20 on max, and 0 if the square is destroyed. The
> second one is crumbling speed which is 0 if the square is not currently
> crumbling, and a value in milliseconds otherwise. This value is used to
> measure if two or more rocks have been thrown on the same square.
> When a new state is received from the remote player, we have to analyse
> this information in order to determine what changes that have occured and if
> we need to take any action.
> If a new x position is received, we simply move the player's local variable
> to this square and play a footstep sound.
> If the new throwing position is different from our old one, we can take a
> few actions depending on its value:
> 1. If the new one is greater than -1 and the old one is -1, the remote
> player threw a rock at us. we play the throwing sound in the appropriate
> location, but take no other action.
> 2. If the new one is -1 and the old one is greater than -1, we can assume
> that the remote player hit us and start the crumbling sequence for that
> square on our end. Naturally if our square is already crumbled, the remote
> player will not get any hit notifications from us.
> 3. If they both are greater than -1, we can assume that the remote player
> hit us and so we activate that sequence as above. We can also assume that
> the remote player made a new throwing attempt in another location and that
> we didn't see the -1 state that came prior to it probably because of lag,
> and so we play another throwing sound in the new location.
> After this, we go on to scan the game board and do the following for each
> square:
> If the new resistance is greater than the old one, the remote player
> hammered and so we play that sound.
> If the new resistance is lower than the old one, we can take four actions.
> 1. If the new resistance is 0 and the old resistance is greater than 0, the
> square just broke so we play the appropriate sound and forget about it.
> 2. If the old crumbling speed is the same as the new one, this was a normal
> crumbling step and so we play the appropriate sound.
> 3. If the old crumbling speed is 0 and the new one is greater than 0, this
> was a new hit so we react accordingly.
> 4. If the old one is greater than the new one and the new one is greater
> than 0, this was a new hit on the same square.
> ---End of Internal Description---
> I realize that this is a lot of very game specific information, and that's
> exactly my point. This all seems like a very dirty hack to me, and I was
> wondering if any of you can suggest a better and more scalable way of doing
> this while still keeping latency to an absolute minimum?
> Thanks in advance for any help!
> Kind regards,
> Philip Bennefall
> P.S. I should perhaps mention that this is a game for the blind; entirely
> based on sound, which is why sounds are mentioned all over the place rather
> than graphics.
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