AWS Game Tech Blog

Amazon GameLift hits the ground running in the new year with a batch of feature updates

Amazon GameLift enables developers to deploy, operate, and scale dedicated, low-cost servers for session-based, multiplayer games. Whether it’s creating a 200+ player battle royale game with Large Match Support or automatically adapting server capacity with player traffic using auto scaling, GameLift leverages the power and reliability of AWS to provide seamless gameplay experiences for players worldwide.

Looking back at 2020, we gathered as much customer feedback as possible in order to make GameLift better. First, we gave you as a game developer the ability to use GameLift FleetIQ independent of other GameLift features, enabling you to add servers to existing on-premises or cloud-based server capacities. Next followed the update to GameLift FlexMatch, so you can use the multiplayer matchmaker with any game server solution of your choice. To finish out the year, we rolled out low cost AMD instances.

Now that 2021 is in full swing, we’re excited to continue this momentum with updated feature availability in China (Beijing) and additional AMD instance support for GameLift FleetIQ. With these updates, you will continue to get the best latency possible, low player wait times, and maximum cost savings. Let’s dig in.

Expanding feature availability in China (Beijing) Region, operated by Sinnet

Developers in China (Beijing) now have more choice and flexibility. They can use GameLift FlexMatch with any game server solution of their choice, as well as tapping into AMD EPYC™ processor-based instances, providing them with:

  • High-quality matches at AWS scale, using your own flexible rules. GameLift FlexMatch uses a powerful algorithm to form matches based on a wide range of rulesets you define. You can also optimize match quality by easily updating your rulesets based on your player’s feedback, so you can create matches that provide players a fun, competitive experience.
  • No upfront or maintenance costs. Pay for what you use. No more spending precious development time building your own scalable rules-based matchmaker. GameLift FlexMatch is a fully managed matchmaker that uses your ruleset to form matches and scales to meet your player demand.
  • Flexibility to place your game sessions anywhere you want. GameLift FlexMatch now works independent of any other GameLift feature, which means you can place the formed matches onto any game server solution you choose, including on-premises.
  • M5a and R5a instances powered by AMD EPYC™ processors. Instances include m5a.large, m5a.xlarge, m5a.2xlarge, m5a.4xlarge, m5a.8xlarge, m5a.12xlarge, m5a.16xlarge, m5a.24xlarge, r5a.large, r5a.xlarge, r5a.2xlarge, r5a.4xlarge, r5a.8xlarge, r5a.12xlarge, r5a.16xlarge, r5a.24xlarge.
  • Up to 10% lower cost over comparable instances. Specifically, the M5a instances deliver leading x86 price-performance through a combination of high-performance processing with up to 10% lower cost over comparable instances.
  • More flexibility in adopting GameLift’s low-cost servers. Without modifying your game server code, you can support the same number of players and provide reliable, consistent player experiences, while benefiting from the cost savings.

New GameLift FleetIQ AMD instance support

Now, if you’re using FleetIQ independent of GameLift, you also have more options to choose, including AMD EPYC™ processor-based instance families. Select new instance types that works best for your game, including:

  • C5a, M5a, and R5a instances powered by AMD EPYC™ processors. Instances include c5a.large, c5a.xlarge, c5a.4xlarge, c5a.8xlarge, m5a.large, m5a.xlarge, m5a.2xlarge, m5a.4xlarge, m5a.8xlarge, m5a.12xlarge, m5a.16xlarge, m5a.24xlarge, r5a.large, r5a.xlarge, r5a.2xlarge, r5a.4xlarge, r5a.8xlarge, r5a.12xlarge, r5a.16xlarge, r5a.24xlarge.
  • Up to 10% lower cost over comparable instances. Specifically, the C5a instances deliver leading x86 price-performance through a combination of high-performance processing with up to 10% lower cost over comparable instances.
  • More flexibility in adopting GameLift’s low-cost servers. Without modifying your game server code, you can support the same number of players and provide reliable, consistent player experiences, while benefiting from the cost savings.
  • Availability in 14 AWS Regions: US East (N. Virginia and Ohio), US West (Oregon and N. California), Central Canada (Montreal), South America (Sao Paulo), EU Central (Frankfurt), EU West (London and Ireland), Asia Pacific South (Mumbai), Asia Pacific Northeast (Seoul and Tokyo), and Asia Pacific Southeast (Singapore and Sydney).

How IllFonic, Yager, and others currently use GameLift to power their backend servers

Some of the world’s most successful game companies already trust GameLift for their games, including IllFonic, Yager, and Panzerdog. In fact, IllFonic lowered latency and reduced server costs by 70% on Amazon GameLift.  These are just a few of the GameLift customers today, and with more launching in 2021.

“To run a successful online multiplayer game today, you need fast servers on demand that can automatically scale when you need them to,” said Charles Brungardt, CEO and Cofounder, IllFonic. “On Amazon GameLift, we lowered latency for our players. So we got that—and more.”

Roman Malakhov, CEO of Panzerdog, says, “Tacticool hosts over 500,000 intense battles every day and for Panzerdog, fast, fair matchmaking is top priority to ensure a great player experience. By using Amazon GameLift, our small team is able to balance their attention to guaranteeing experience and innovating with new technology improvements, without requiring additional specialist resources. For each of the six completely different Tacticool modes, we simply describe our desired matchmaking rule set and the rest is made possible by GameLift FlexMatch. Also, global availability helps us provide a low latency experience to players wherever they are, while Amazon EC2 Spot fleets enable us to save up to 70% of our game server costs with automatic scaling. We can easily adapt to the changing load to delight our players with stable and fun real-time gameplay.”

Getting started with GameLift

2021 has just started, and we’re only beginning to warm up. So, stay tuned with more on the horizon! In the meantime, we would love to hear from you. Let us know what you think about this update and what features you would like to see in the future. Connect with the GameLift team on the forums or through the AWS Game Tech social media channels.

Learn how to get started »