Massively multiplayer (500 players in 1 area) games impossible with current engine

Massively multiplayer games where there are 500-1000 player characters in a 100m x 100m virtual area are impossible with the current engine out of the box according to some testing an acquaintance of mine has been doing. Apparently UE can handle 150 player characters max in the same area due to CPU usage client side.

Dark Age of Camelot is a game that supported 500+ people in the same area although after 500 it started to get a bit laggy client side. For a demo of this game in action simply search Twitch for Dark Age of Camelot and you might see a large battle take place.

To examine code behind DAoC servers you can examine the Dawn of Light server emulation project (freeshard server program) which while not an official server, is a just as capable version of it.

I’m sure you’re aware of this limitation with UE as I’ve heard that Ashes of Creation devs had to do a lot of optimization work and so you probably also heard this. Also Mortal Online 2 devs encountered player count performance issues back in February 2022 and their total server population dived from 7000 to 900. I’m not sure of the exact nature of their issues though. Their issues might be server CPU bound.

It might be a good idea if you started on a project to create an optimized version of your engine that is aimed at supporting up to 1000 player characters in the same area / zone within an MMORPG.

I’m no C++ expert but this might involve creating a new version of your GAS functionality, your character movement component or the whole ACharacter and AActor classes.

Exposing Replication Graph to Blueprint would also be a nice feature for those of us who would prefer to avoid C++.

Best regards,
James