AWS for Games Blog

Get Autoscaling Right the First Time with Amazon GameLift Target Tracking

No one likes paying for things they don’t use – and server capacity is no different. Typical multiplayer games use only 50% of their peak server capacity on average, meaning that half of the time the game servers have no active players. To reduce wasted capacity and costs, Amazon GameLift can automatically turn off game servers when they are not needed and add new game servers when more players arrive. Until today, this required you to create several complex rulesets.

Today we’re introducing Target Tracking, a new option for configuring autoscaling in Amazon GameLift, based on a single input – no complex ruleset required.

Autoscaling Simplified and Optimized

Amazon GameLift Target Tracking removes the need to create complex autoscaling rulesets and helps you optimize available server capacity by allowing you to simply set a target for the steady-state percentage of available game sessions.

Target Tracking adds or removes server capacity as needed to keep available game sessions at the target percentage you specified, and adjusts to fluctuating load patterns to minimize rapid fluctuations in capacity.

Target Tracking Put to the Test

So how does autoscaling with Target Tracking actually perform? Let’s take a look at a few tests.

If you want to target 20% available game sessions, you simply enter “20” as your target in the console. Amazon GameLift Target Tracking then monitors available game sessions and automatically scales server instances to target 20% available game sessions. With Target Tracking set to 20%, we achieved an average of 24.46% available game sessions over a 24 hour period. To achieve similar results with our rule based autoscaling, we would have needed to create 6 different rules.

We ran the same simulation to target 15% available game sessions over a 24 hour period. With Target Tracking, we averaged 20.75% available game sessions.

To get more details about how to configure autoscaling with Amazon GameLift Target Tracking, visit our developer documentation.