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Ubisoft: 'For Honor' issues are more complicated than its peer-to-peer system

For Honor: Launch Trailer (Gameplay) [US]
Ubisoft’s sword-and-shield combat game For Honor released in February to relatively positive reviews, with praise directed toward its unique fighting mechanics and translation of popular multiplayer shooter mechanics into another genre, but the game has also struggled consistently with matchmaking and connection issues — at times so severe that Ubisoft even offered extra rewards as an apology. Some thought that these issues would be rectified if the developer had opted to use dedicated servers instead of the implemented peer-to-peer connection system, but this is apparently not the case.

Speaking to Eurogamer, game director Roman Campos-Oriola revealed that, while the matchmaking issues we’ve seen thus far — which include dropped connections and annoying lag during fights — have been improving, there are a number of different issues that must be addressed that have nothing to do with peer-to-peer connections.

” … the way our technology works, even if we were on dedicated servers, we would have the same issues we have today,” Campos-Oriola said. “Making 4v4 fighting work over a network — it’s really special, because your exact position is much more important, and your timing is much more important than in a shooter.”

To keep up with the precise actions of each player, the game locally simulates other characters’ movements based on the players’ inputs. Anyone far away from dedicated servers would still experience lag using this system, Campos-Oriola said, and the For Honor model doesn’t feature a traditional peer “host,” but rather connects each player to every other player.

But there is very little evidence that a peer-to-peer system is ideal for any multiplayer game and Campos-Oriola confirmed that the team could still possibly switch the game over to dedicated servers eventually should it not be satisfied with the improvements it makes to the current system. With the current avalanche of new game releases taking attention away from For Honor, we can only hope that the environment becomes stable quickly.

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