Communication abstraction for data synchronization in distributed virtual environments : application to multiplayer games on mobile phones

Abstract : Multiplayer games users' have increased since the widespread use of the internet. Withthe arrival of rich portable devices and faster cellular wireless networks, multiplayer games on mobile phones and PDAs are becoming a reality. For multiplayer games to be playable, they should be highly interactive, fair and should have a consistent state for all the players. Because of the high wireless network latency and jitters, the issue of providing interactive games with consistent state across the network is non-trivial. In this thesis, we propose different approaches for achieving consistency in mobile multiplayer games in the face of high latency and large and variable jitters. Although absolute consistency is impossible to achieve because information takes time to travel from one place to another, we exploit the fact that strong consistency is not always required in the virtual world and can be relaxed in many cases. Our proposed approach uses the underlying network latency and the position of different objects in the virtual world to decide when to relax consistency and when to apply strong consistency mechanisms. We evaluate our approach by implementing these algorithms in J2ME based games played on mobile phones. The algorithms for consistency mechanism are very complex and are often intermixed with the game core logic's code, which makes it hard to program a game and to change its code in the future. We propose to separate the consistency mechanisms from the game logic and put them in a distributed component responsible for both consistency maintenance and communication over the network. We call this reusable component a Synchronization Medium.
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Computer Science. Institut National des Télécommunications, 2010. English. <NNT : 2010TELE0011>


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Abdul Malik Khan. Communication abstraction for data synchronization in distributed virtual environments : application to multiplayer games on mobile phones. Computer Science. Institut National des Télécommunications, 2010. English. <NNT : 2010TELE0011>. <tel-00541849>

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