Making a game?

There’s a database for that.

Whether it’s leaderboards, virtual goods, or even cheat detection, players generate a ton of data that needs to be processed, stored, and accessed in real-time. Old guard databases struggle to keep up with the write-heavy demands of today’s games. The one-size-fits-all approach just isn’t working anymore.

Write-heavy games need the right tools.

AWS offers 14 purpose-built databases for building use case-driven, highly scalable, distributed games. With relational databases that are 3-5X faster than popular alternatives at 1/10th the cost and non-relational databases clocking in at microsecond to sub-millisecond latency, our highly performant databases support data models as diverse as your games.

How can AWS databases work for you?

Amazon Aurora

Amazon Aurora is a relational database that allows you to store and scale your game data. Great for massive crowds.

Amazon DynamoDB

Amazon DynamoDB can store and retrieve large volumes of game data quickly and reliably. Great for managing inventories.

Amazon ElastiCache

Amazon ElastiCache gives you real-time access to your game data when you need it. Perfect for fast-paced multiplayer games.

Amazon Neptune

Amazon Neptune lets you navigate billions of relational data points. Great for fraud detection, security, and social networks.

Get Started

Get your free Database eBook from AWS Game Tech.

Register for the Game Tech Database Webinar and eBook.

Get your free Introduction to Scalable Game Development Patterns on AWS: Second Edition eBook and learn more about the different AWS databases and use cases for game development.  


Meet a few of our AWS database customers:


Customer: Zynga

"Most of the automation we’re enjoying has long been standard for RDS, but using Aurora has delivered the automation of RDS along with the performance of self-managed i2 instances. Aurora is now our first choice for new services using relational databases."

- Chris Broglie, Architect (Zynga)



Customer: PennyPop (player and game state datastore)

PennyPop is the maker of Battle Camp, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) in which players fight synchronously and chat in real time. Battle Camp is consistently in the list of the top 100 highest grossing applications in more than 40 countries.

Use case: PennyPop built this MMORPG with a small team of developers and needed to be able to scale out easily but maintain low costs. Using DynamoDB allowed PennyPop to launch with only a few requests per minute and scale to more than 80,000 requests per second. Because DynamoDB is a fully managed service, it allows the small development team to focus on game development and not on operations. Also, by using DynamoDB, PennyPop has saved at least 50 percent per year when compared to hosting and sharding their MySQL database. PennyPop would have needed to double its operations staff from three to six server engineers to run the same environment on-premises.

Design patterns: DynamoDB stores all player and game data, which is partitioned by player ID because it is accessed using the key-value access pattern (1:1 modeling pattern). Each player’s data is Gzipped and stored as a Base64 string to save on costs. Compression reduces the player data to 10 percent of its original size.



Customer: Rovio Entertainment  

Rovio Entertainment is the Finland-based game developer, publisher, and distributor that owns the Angry Birds franchise. Rovio operates its SQL Server databases on Amazon RDS. Rovio takes its responsibility to customers seriously, and understands that the way it handles customer data is crucial to this. Mikko Peltola, Senior Manager of Cloud Operations at Rovio, finds that the AWS cloud helps him in a number of ways when it comes to security.

“One is that with AWS we have fewer security concerns—we don’t have to worry about data center access controls on a physical level, for example. We also get to benefit from all the development work that AWS does in control, auditability, and encryption.”

Mikko Peltola, Senior Manager of Cloud Operations - Rovio


Bandai Namnco

Customer: Bandai Namco Studios Inc.

Bandai Namco Studios Inc. began as an independent offshoot of Bandai Namco Games Inc. in Japan. The company develops arcade games, platform-specific software, and social and mobile games. The company decided that using AWS services including Amazon RDS MySQL would provide better performance, lower costs, better security, and greater availability. In particular, Bandai Namco saw the potential benefit in terms of reductions in overhead, especially when it came to adding, modifying, and removing server resources.


X.D. Networks

Customer: X.D. Network

X.D. Network is one of the largest mobile game companies in Shanghai, China.

"Ragnarok Online, an MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game) mobile game we launched in the Korea region in March 2018, needs to constantly update game statistics and player status. The burden of massive write operations can reach 25,000 queries per second easily, which exceeds the limit of traditional MySQL databases. Thanks to the Amazon Aurora database, we can accomplish this without changing any of the code, and even keep latency to less than 35 ms to ensure we can continue to expand our user base. Thanks to the high performance and availability that Amazon Aurora provides, Ragnarok Online reached number one in the free and top-grossing mobile game categories in Korea when it launched."

Tomasen Shen, CTO – X.D. Network Inc.



Customer: Sumzap, Inc.

Sumzap, Inc. is a Japanese smartphone gaming company that produces Sengoku Enbu -KIZNA-, a game title that was ranked first in the iOS sales rankings multiple times.

“The migration of Sengoku Enbu -KIZNA- from our on-premises data center to AWS was completed very successfully in February 2019. We are now using several Amazon Aurora clusters (MySQL-compatible edition), with our application servers running on Amazon EC2 instances in the same availability zone for low latency. During gaming events, when we have access peaks three times a day, we use auto-scaling and EC2 Spot for our application servers, and have found that both Aurora and EC2 handle these peaks without any issues whatsoever.”

Hiroyuki Ishihara, SRE Team Manager - Sumzap, Inc.


Hover over or click the company icon for more information on how they are using AWS Database solutions.

Why AWS databases?

AWS offers purpose-built database services that address different problems faced by today’s game developers so that they never have to make tradeoffs around functionality, performance, or scale.

Built for games

Choose from AWS's portfolio of 14 purpose-built databases including relational, key-value, document, in-memory, and graph databases that support diverse data models and allows you to build use case driven, highly scalable, distributed games.  

Save time and cost

Available and secure

AWS databases are built for mission-critical game workloads, offering high availability, reliability, and security with multiple levels of security, including encryption at rest using keys you create and control, as well as encryption-in-transit.  

Performance at scale

Start small and scale as your game grows with relational databases. Purpose-built databases are optimized for the data model you need, enabling your game can scale and perform better at 1/10 the cost versus commercial databases.

Improve performance and scale

Fully managed

AWS continuously monitors your clusters to keep your workloads up and running with self-healing storage and automated scaling, so that you can focus on the creative aspects of game development.

Game Tech Database Latest Content

📰 Latest AWS Game Tech database news, blogs, and tutorials.

Stay up-to-date with the latest AWS Game Tech database news, blogs, demos, tutorials, and other content for Game Developers.


AWS Databases blog: Managed Databases for Awesome Games
November 8, 2019
DynamoDB Tutorial: Data Modeling a Gaming Application with DynamoDB
October 31, 2019

AWS Databases and use cases

Database type
Use cases
AWS service

Relational Database

Relational databases store data with predefined schemas and relationships between them. These databases are designed to support ACID transactions, and maintain referential integrity and strong data consistency.

Inventory, Shops, Trading items, Quest states, Leaderboards

Amazon Aurora

MySQL and PostgreSQL-compatible relational database built for the cloud. Performance and availability of commercial-grade databases at 1/10th the cost 

Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS)

Set up, operate, and scale a relational database in the cloud with just a few clicks 

Amazon Redshift

The most popular and fastest cloud data warehouse


Key-value Database

Key-value databases are optimized for common access patterns, typically to store and retrieve large volumes of data. These databases deliver quick response times, even in extreme volumes of concurrent requests.

Player/item stats/profile, Especially upgrades and enchantments, Game state, Quest data

Amazon DynamoDB

Fast and flexible NoSQL database service for any scale


In-memory Database

In-memory databases are used for applications that require real-time access to data. By storing data directly in memory, these databases deliver microsecond latency to applications for whom millisecond latency is not enough.

Used to quickly store and retrieve many of the above - but ephemeral so needs to eventually write to a disk based DB, Leaderboards, Session management, Player stats/profile, Metrics, Chat

Amazon ElastiCache for Memcached

Managed, Memcached-compatible, in-memory store. Sub-millisecond latency to power real-time applications

Amazon ElastiCache for Redis

Redis compatible in-memory data store built for the cloud. Power real-time applications with sub-millisecond latency


Document Database

A document database is designed to store semistructured data as JSON-like documents. These databases help developers build and update applications quickly.

Quest/player/item descriptions

Amazon DocumentDB

Fast, scalable, highly available MongoDB-compatible database service


Graph Database

Graph databases are for applications that need to navigate and query millions of relationships between highly connected graph datasets with millisecond latency at large scale.

Cheat detection, Friends, Item/quest recommendations, Dynamic NPC relationship

Amazon Neptune

Fast, reliable graph database built for the cloud

Time series

Time Series Database

Time series databases efficiently collect, synthesize, and derive insights from data that changes over time and with queries spanning time intervals.

Player patterns/churn, Economy

Amazon Timestream

Fast, scalable, fully managed time series database


Ledger Database

Ledger databases provide a centralized and trusted authority to maintain a scalable, immutable, and cryptographically verifiable record of transactions for every application.

Economy, Item trades/auctions, Items/characters that can go from game to game

Amazon Quantum Ledger Database (QLDB)

Fully managed ledger database that provides a transparent, immutable, and cryptographically verifiable transaction log. Owned by a central trusted authorit

Get your free Database eBook from AWS Game Tech

Register for the Game Tech Database Webinar and eBook.

Get your free Introduction to Scalable Game Development Patterns on AWS: Second Edition eBook and learn more about the different AWS databases and use cases for game development.

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