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USENIX, The Advanced Computing Systems Association

NSDI '06 — Abstract

Pp. 155–168 of the Proceedings

Colyseus: A Distributed Architecture for Online Multiplayer Games

Ashwin Bharambe, Jeffrey Pang, and Srinivasan Seshan, Carnegie Mellon University


This paper presents the design, implementation, and evaluation of Colyseus, a distributed architecture for interactive multiplayer games. Colyseus takes advantage of a game's tolerance for weakly consistent state and predictable workload to meet the tight latency constraints of game-play and maintain scalable communication costs. In addition, it provides a rich distributed query interface and effective pre-fetching subsystem to help locate and replicate objects before they are accessed at a node. We have implemented Colyseus and modified Quake II, a popular first person shooter game, to use it. Our measurements of Quake II and our own Colyseus-based game with hundreds of players shows that Colyseus effectively distributes game traffic across the participating nodes, allowing Colyseus to support low-latency game-play for an order of magnitude more players than existing single server designs, with similar per-node bandwidth costs.
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Last changed: 1 June 2006 ch