Tuesday, January 31, 2012

World Record Get! 1000-man FPS catches Guiness' attention

And now for something MuchDifferent...

Last Sunday, the Swedish non-profit tech firm MuchDifferent garnered worldwide interest when it hosted the first browser-based 1000-man FPS match.

Their title, "Man vs. Machine" will now be entered into the Guinness Book of World Records as having the largest team-based online deathmatch in history. 

MAG who?

Do you hear that? It's the tinny groaning of servers the world over when I type, "1000-man FPS." Read more to see video of this epic showdown.

MuchDifferent CEO Christian Lönnholm told Gamer4Eva.com that the server strain was enormous once the Internet caught wind of the ambitious shooter and its world record attempt.

“It was amazing. We did not imagine the amount of interest that this game would generate, so the system went down shortly after we had reached the peak of 999 players. Within minutes we were able to adjust it, and the battle continued for about two hours more. Almost until the end we were averaging around 980 players at any given moment. It was a blast!” said Lönnholm.

The technology behind this gargantuan feat is called "PikkoServer" and it was designed to support an MMO framework - turning one host's server architecture into a dedicated set that can easily balance the workload. This allows PikkoServer tech to scale according to the number of players.

At first glance, the framerate is abysmal, but doesn't chug. The Unity engine - also developed by MuchDifferent - seems to allow for simple, albeit heavily saturated effects that take little toll on processor power. 

The art design evokes a very flat, texture-light motif that plays off the burst and bloom of laser fire. Not very flashy, but that's not the point - we can't gripe about what it looks like now. 

What it really looks like is the future of the online FPS genre.

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