If you didn’t know, a technical test for For Honor has been running for the last few days. It’s only open to players on PC, only to a select few, and those playing are subject to NDA.
But apparently not all is well. Things are so borked, in fact, that one of the testers has gone out on a limb and uploaded a video showing just how broken the game is right now.
The video, which was uploaded to the smaller sharing site Vidme, showcases some pretty severe issues with the matchmaking. Now while we don’t know where the uploader lives, what the quality of their internet connection is like, or particular details that could result in some of the issues seen, it does at least give us a better indication of what For Honor will look like (at least in terms of the front-end) at launch.
One of the main pressure points brought up, both by the uploader and elsewhere, is the use of peer-to-peer matchmaking, instead of dedicated servers. Not having dedicated servers is fine if you live in continental Europe or the United States, but it’s a royal pain for anyone living in remote regions. Even Australians in metro regions can run into issues, if the game or playlist they’re playing isn’t overly popular.
And it’s worth remembering that the game is still a technical alpha. For Honor launches on Valentine’s Day, but there’s still plenty of opportunity for Ubisoft to tweak the matchmaking algorithms and release optimisations that improve the stability and search time for multiplayer. It wouldn’t be the first game to have a rocky alpha, only for things to vastly improve upon release.
But some things can’t change, and the use of player-hosted lobbies is a big one. There’s already a small thread on the For Honor subreddit lobbying Ubisoft for dedicated servers, although it’s hard to see how that would be possible so close to release. It’s also a little odd, given that Ubisoft made a point of using Microsoft’s Azure datacentres for Rainbow Six: Siege to ensure quality of connections around the world (including in Australia).
As just one small example, it raises questions about cheating if lobbies are going to be hosted on the players’ end. At the very minimum it opens the door for nefarious behaviour with Net Limiter and the such, although no-one can say yet whether it could result in the similar nightmare that befell The Division at launch.