Edgegap’s 2023 Performance Benchmark – 14 Million CCU in 60 Minutes
Nov 28, 2023
Launch the #1 Game in the World, without Breaking a Sweat
The true challenge of a multiplayer game is scaling to meet player demand over a short period of time such as a midnight launch, the game’s addition to a subscription service (e.g., XBOX Game Pass), or a “Twitch sensation” overnight popularity.
Edgegap was able to deliver 40 started deployments per seconds on average, consistently, for 60 minutes for a total of 14 million concurrent users (“CCU”) of players worldwide.
This is the equivalent of peak users for the #1 game in the world, across every platform (PC, Consoles, etc.) for one of the hardest types of game to deploy due to its high number of players per game server – 100-player Battle Royale. The complexity is due to the decision-making required for the great number of players, which would be easier with a lower player count.
In November 2023, the team at Edgegap held our platform orchestration’s annual performance benchmark.
It is our guarantee to game developers that Edgegap, thanks to its patented orchestration technology, will scale your multiplayer game regardless of its popularity.
Be it midnight ahead of your game’s launch with millions of gamers that have your game preloaded and are ready to play, to a streamer popularizing your game on Twitch to millions of viewers, being featured by a first party such as Microsoft / Sony / Apple / Google, or its availability as part of a subscription service like Xbox Game Pass, PlayStation Plus or Netflix Games.
This performance benchmark is called a “load test" which highlights how an application behaves while actual traffic is sent through the system.
Understanding the Basics
In terms of baseline information, there are really four variables that matter:
Time: Games need to scale almost instantly, as players demand spikes at very specific times and days. Scaling to millions over hours is pointless – ask any game developer, it needs to happen extremely quickly when demand is at its highest. There are millions of games out there, players will rarely retry a few hours later if it did not work the first time.
Deployments per Seconds: This is how many game server (“deployments of instances”) per seconds can be deployed. This is the single most critical metric, as it determines how many games can be launched, regardless of the numbers of players per match. A major requirement is the deployment is started every time. Adding to the complexity.
Concurrent Users (“CCU”): This is the total number of players playing your game at any given time. This is the “big number” people know (thanks, Steamcharts). It is important to understand that millions of players might be online during a short, peak period. Thus, it is important that any orchestration service is able to scale very quickly during this short window. A big CCU number is great, but how fast it got there is more critical to your game’s success.
In short: The more vCPU, the greater the compute ressources is needed in the cloud.
In Detail: Game servers could require substantial computational resources, with vCPU representing how much “demand” the game server needs and the allocation of vCPUs helps ensure that the server can handle the demands of running the game, processing player actions, and managing other game-related tasks. Cloud servers will have specific allocation of vCPU per machine. The vCPU needs for a multiplayer game can vary widely depending on several factors, with MMOs notoriously requiring high requirements (see Path of Titan), and turn-based games such as “TCG” card games being much less demanding. It is strongly recommended to optimize your vCPU demand, and Edgegap is here to help.
Breaking Down the Metrics
For our 2023 performance benchmark, Edgegap’s goal was simple… yet extremely challenging – show to a studio Edgegap’s platform can deploy enough game servers per second so their game will not fail at launch.
In other words, reach the highest possible deployment per seconds in 60 minutes (the equivalent of peak “midnight launch” demand) for the #1 game in the world.
Easy right? Well, not so.
Before we get all “backend nerd” on you, here are the metrics upon which the benchmark was built:
Time: 60 minutes, to meet the requirement of peak demand for a game.
vCPU: 1 vCPU, or the expected requirement for a typical multiplayer shooter game. Numerous projects use these requirements on the Edgegap platform.
Total Number of Players per Game Servers: 100, the equivalent of a Battle Royale such as Fortnite or similar games such as H1Z1 or PUBG.
Peak CCU: Deliver on the “peak users” of the #1 game in 2023. For example, Counter Strike 2 has a peak CCU of 1.8M players or one hour, yet at any given time, it’s likely to see 500k-700k players.
Backend Nerd Section – Or Ignore It and Skip to the Results Below
We are currently leveraging a sophisticated tool designed to generate API calls to our platform. The primary aim is to optimize and elevate the frequency of these calls, thereby scaling our infrastructure to accommodate a higher volume of server requests.
At the core of our backend architecture lies Capacity Manager module. This microservice plays a pivotal role in meticulously monitoring deployments across the globe. Its key responsibility is to guarantee the availability of requisite infrastructure, ensuring seamless handling of all incoming client requests. This intricate system allows us to dynamically adapt and efficiently manage the ever-growing demands on our platform.
To initiate deployments, we employ a load generator tool named Locust. This tool has been customized to emulate the behavior of a matchmaker, generating requests with players in the same regions. These requests are then incorporated into an Edgegap request, subsequently validating the successful launch and operation of the game server. This meticulous process ensures that the servers are deployed using the identical methodology employed by our studio on our platform.
We leverage 17 providers globally, entities like Akamai Cloud and the major clouds. This includes bare-metal providers, edge services, and CDN vendors. This diverse network ensures that we consistently have ample capacity and quick provisioning, guaranteeing the availability of servers for deploying your game servers.
The Results & Comparison
On to the fun part.
Edgegap’s benchmark determined that it could handle a massive 40 deployments per second on average, consistently, for 60 minutes across its 17+ providers and 550+ locations worldwide.
Given the game parameters above, this results in a total of 14 million CCU within 60 minutes. For reference, that is 4.3x of PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS peak of 3,236,027 players in January 2018 and more recently 7.7x of Counter Strike 2 at its peak of 1,802,853 players in May 2023 (1).
Assuming the addition of consoles to PC, which typically triples to quadruple the numbers of players, it still leaves plenty of room for scaling to be the #1 game in the world.
When compared to the king of CCU, Fortnite, it is still 2.2x its peak player count – 6.17 million users on November 5th 2023 (2).
Whether you are ready to release the next major video game release, or really just like the convenience of automated game servers and hosting for your personal or studio project, there’s no better way to get your game online than Edgegap. Experience it for yourself and start for free today by clicking the big blue rectangle below. Too much of a commitment? Jump on our Discord to ask us questions if you prefer.
Still not convinced? Learn about the impact Edgegap has with other game developers through case studies with game developers using all major engines and netcodes.
Or contact us directly for a tailored overview of how Edgegap can achieve for your game.
Edgegap - For Flawless Multiplayer
(1) Steamcharts. As of 2023.11.27
(2) Fortnite.gg. As of 2023.11.27
Full, unedited 60 minute benchmark assessment viewable here.