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AWS Community Builders

Introduction to Game Tech with AWS

Adit Modi
AWS Community Builder | DEV moderator for #cloud , #aws , #devops and #bigdata .
・8 min read

You’re imagining future games that delight players, and these games need the infrastructure and solutions to support your development. Bringing your ideas to life requires servers that can scale with tens of millions of players around the world. It requires databases that can process terabytes to petabytes of ever-changing data. It requires analytics solutions that can access that data with millisecond latency. And it requires machine learning that can speed up your processes and even translate into new, immersive gameplay. Players expect games to have regular and compelling updates. More efficient workflows can enable faster time to market when building your next game or migrating existing workloads.

WHY AWS GAME TECH?

Game Tech provides a broad portfolio of managed and core cloud services to help you build faster, operate smarter, and create fun, innovative experiences. No matter your team size, any game can come to life using our range of services, trusted infrastructure, and unmatched pace of innovation.

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My Background: Cloud Engineer | AWS Community Builder | AWS Educate Cloud Ambassador | 4x AWS Certified | 3x OCI Certified | 3x Azure Certified.

The Introduction to AWS is a Series containing different articles that provide a basic introduction to different aws topics/categories. Each article covers the detailed guide on how to work with particular topic/category . This series aims at providing "A Getting Started Guide on Different aws topics / categories ."

Build your game in the cloud

Reduce downtime and save costs
Improve gameplay and minimize latency with backend infrastructure that’s closer to your players. Decrease operational costs during low-demand periods using serverless architectures and servers with automatic scaling. With AWS’s infrastructure, studios can pay only for the resources they use instead of investing in servers upfront.

Increase productivity and efficiency

Deploy new game features faster, expand capacity to meet player demand, and reduce fraud and cheating. Reduce the amount of building and testing needed to launch your game using automation and managed services that are designed for game workloads. With over 1 million active customers across 190 countries, 24 regions, 77 Availability Zones, studios can have new IT resources available in just a few clicks, increasing agility.

Extend player lifetime value (LTV)

Extend the life of your game and keep innovating with services that help you understand your players and keep them engaged longer. With 175+ services supporting virtually any cloud workload, developers can de-provision servers as needed enabling them to experiment often and fail fast if a game idea doesn’t work.

Enable innovation with a trusted partner

Build highly available multiplayer games with global reach, automatic scaling, and intelligent matchmaking. We provide the core staples of technology infrastructure, so studios can focus on developing the engagement with players rather than on infrastructure.

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Amazon GameLift

Amazon GameLift is a managed service for deploying, operating, and scaling dedicated game servers for session-based multiplayer games. Amazon GameLift makes it easy to manage server infrastructure, scale capacity to lower latency and cost, match players into available game sessions, and defend from distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. You pay for the compute resources and bandwidth your games actually use, without monthly or annual contracts.

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Why GameLift ?

Here are some of the benefits of using Amazon GameLift:

Bring your own fully custom multiplayer game servers or use ready-to-go Realtime Servers that require minimal configuration and little or no backend experience.

Provide low-latency player experience to support fast-action game play.

Enhance your matchmaking services with intelligent queuing, game session placement, and match backfill.

Reduce engineering and operational effort to deploy and operate game servers globally.

Get started fast and pay as you go, with no upfront costs and no long-term commitments.

Reduce costs by up to 90% with Spot Instances.

Rely on Amazon Web Services (AWS), including Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) for web-scale cloud computing resources and auto-scaling to manage your hosting capacity.

GameLift offers a range of solutions for game developers:

  • GameLift hosting for custom-built game servers.

  • GameLift hosting with Realtime Servers

  • GameLift FleetIQ game hosting optimizations for use with Amazon EC2

GameLift hosting

Amazon GameLift offers a fully managed service for deploying, operating, and scaling session-based, multiplayer game servers. GameLift replaces the work required to host your own custom game servers, including buying and setting up hardware, and managing ongoing activity, security, storage, and performance tracking. Auto-scaling capabilities provide additional protection from having to pay for more resources than you need, while making sure you always have games available for new players to join with minimal waiting.

To learn more about how the GameLift hosting solution works, see How GameLift works.

GameLift hosting with Realtime Servers

Use Realtime Servers to stand up games that don't need custom-built game servers. This lightweight server solution provides ready-to-go game servers that can be configured to fit your game. You can deploy game servers with anything from minimal configuration settings to custom logic that is specific to your game and players.

To learn more about how GameLift hosting with Realtime Servers works, see How Realtime Servers Work.

GameLift FleetIQ

GameLift FleetIQ optimizes the use of low-cost Spot Instances for cloud-based game hosting. With this feature, you can work directly with your hosting resources in Amazon EC2 and Auto Scaling and take advantage of GameLift optimizations to deliver inexpensive, resilient game hosting for your players. This solution is designed for game developers who need more flexibility than is offered in the fully managed GameLift solutions.

To learn more about how GameLift FleetIQ works with Amazon EC2 and Auto Scaling for game hosting, see the GameLift FleetIQ Guide.

Amazon Lumberyard

Amazon Lumberyard is a free, cross-platform, 3D game engine for you to create the highest-quality games, connect your games to the vast compute and storage of the AWS Cloud, and engage fans on Twitch. By starting game projects with Lumberyard, you can spend more of your time creating great gameplay and building communities of fans, and less time on the undifferentiated heavy lifting of building a game engine and managing server infrastructure.

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What is Lumberyard?

Amazon Lumberyard is a free, cross-platform, 3D game engine that allows you to create high-quality games, connect your games to the compute and storage of the AWS Cloud, and engage fans on Twitch. With Lumberyard, you can spend more time creating great gameplay and building communities of fans, and less time on the heavy lifting of building a game engine and managing servers.

Lumberyard offers everything a professional game developer can expect, such as a full-featured editor, native code performance, and stunning visuals. It also includes hundreds of other ready-to-use features like networking, cinematics, the Script Canvas editor, the Animation Editor, audio tools, and more.

A world-class engine

At its core, Lumberyard is a high-performance real-time 3D engine that produces incredible visual fidelity. Lumberyard includes all the capabilities that professional designers, artists, and developers expect, with familiar user experience patterns that enable fast adoption and development. Its robust toolset enables rapid iteration to the highest quality. Built on a modular architecture and extensible through the Gems framework, Lumberyard makes it easy to add new features, APIs, and assets.

Deeply integrated with Amazon Web Services

Lumberyard’s online capabilities, backed by Amazon Web Services, offer staggering possibilities to developers. Common connected elements like dedicated servers, dynamic content, online economies, and real-time stats are easily implemented and scaled, so you can focus on the creative aspects of your project. With Lumberyard’s crossplay capabilities and Twitch integration, you can find new and novel ways to engage people socially. The limitless potential of AWS can deliver experiences that reach far beyond the capabilities of any single device.

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AWS integrations include:

Amazon GameLift

Amazon GameLift is an AWS service for deploying, operating, and scaling session-based multiplayer games. You can scale high-performance game servers up and down to meet player demand without additional engineering effort.

For more information, see the Amazon GameLift Developer Guide.

Cloud Canvas

Cloud Canvas is Lumberyard's technology for connecting your game to Amazon Web Services. With Cloud Canvas, you can use AWS to implement cloud-hosted features and create asynchronous multiplayer games. Using AWS means you no longer have to acquire, configure, or operate host servers to implement connected gameplay.

You can build live, online game features, such as a community news feed, daily gifts, or in-game notifications, in minutes with Lumberyard's Cloud Canvas tool. Using cloud gems, you can build gameplay that connects to AWS services, such as Amazon DynamoDB, AWS Lambda, and Amazon S3.

For more information, see Implementing Connected Features with Cloud Canvas.

AWS SDK for C++

The AWS SDK for C++ provides C++ API operations for numerous AWS services including Amazon S3, Amazon EC2, Amazon DynamoDB, and more, with support for all major native platforms. You can use the SDK to integrate AWS components into your game.

For more information, see the AWS SDK for C++.

Integrated with Twitch

Lumberyard is integrated with Twitch so that you can build games that engage with more than 1.7 million monthly broadcasters and more than 100 million monthly viewers on Twitch.

Twitch ChatPlay

The Twitch ChatPlay feature within Lumberyard helps you build gameplay that interacts in real time with Twitch viewers. For example, you can build a game where viewers can vote on game outcomes, gift power-ups to their favorite players, or change the level based on the number of viewers watching the player.

For more information, see Twitch ChatPlay System.

Free with Source

Lumberyard is free, including source code. You can customize Lumberyard for your team and vision for your project today, and for future projects. There are no seat fees, subscription fees, or requirements to share revenue. Only pay for the AWS services that you choose to use.

Conclusion

traditional streaming approaches for 3D interactive content and applications like online gaming have difficulty reaching this level of concurrency. The cost is prohibitive, and even if budgets were limitless, the cloud GPU hardware is just not available to scale. To ensure the future of our cloud gaming for changing experiences and immersive environments we must face the realities of current approaches head-on and redefine scale to incorporate the concepts of concurrency, reach and new experiences. Driving towards a future where the possibilities are limitless, leading to games being built in a cloud-first approach.

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