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Handling Network Latency Variation in 'Modern Warfare'

Mitchell Sanborn  (Director of Online Programming, Infinity Ward)

Date: Wednesday, August 5

Time: 6:00pm - 6:45pm

Pass Type: Conference Pass - Get your pass now!

Topic: Programming

Format: Session

Vault Recording: Video

This talk explores the Modern Warfare network model, how variations in packet delivery impact the look and feel of the game, and the various methods applied to reduce the impact of network anomalies on the player. Special attention is paid to throttling data generation and consumption in order to control the game's response. A general mechanism for controlling network throttle is derived from basic signal analysis. Finally, telemetry from the live game is presented that motivated changes to the throttle response and raised questions for additional study.


Attendees learn how the Modern Warfare engine and similar client-server architectures synchronize game state, how variations in packet delivery rate impact the smooth visualization of that state, and how throttling controls which methods can be applied to keep the game play feeling consistent.

Intended Audience

Attendees should have some basic understanding of common game networking models and how game state is simulated and visualized.