For Honor's Dedicated Servers Make A Big Difference

After a bit of maintenance, For Honor's dedicated servers finally went live on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Let me tell you: They feel good - real good - and it only took a year for that to happen.

Previously, For Honor multiplayer relied on peer-to-peer hosting for matches. When the player hosting quit the match, whoever was left often got dropped altogether. Even when others left or got disconnected, matches would crawl to a halt as the game sought to stabilise.

Today, that's no longer the case. I played a handful of matches on PS4 and was able to notice the difference after completing a match without any hiccups. There was no stuttering and zero host-migration. Everything ran smoothly, for the most part.

I witnessed someone playing as Lawbringer vanish right before my eyes, which with P2P servers would mean watching as the game stalled and wondering if I was about to be sent back to the stage select screen.

You know what happened on the dedicated server? Nothing. The game replaced them with a bot and continued uninterrupted.

So far, most players have shared similar positive experiences of the new servers on the game's subreddit.

"By the Gods, this is a lot more pleasant," one wrote. "Didn't even notice players leaving and entering because there was no more of that horrible stop-starting, no more horrible little lag jumps and belches: It was just a much smoother and overall plain better experience." Many are also appreciative that Ubisoft continues to update and improve the game 12 months after its release.

Players have complained about the original online setup as far back as the beta, but Ubisoft maintained at the time that its chosen online infrastructure was perfectly adequate. Then in July the publisher reversed course and announced the game would get dedicated servers after all.

Ubisoft finally began testing them late last year and brought them to PC two weeks ago.

But dedicated servers haven't fixed everything about For Honor. Lag remains an issue. Ever since the removal of time snapping, a term for how the game used to try and synchronise actions between players at regular 100-millisecond intervals, the game has felt sped up, and people with slower connections have been at a bigger disadvantage.

If you stopped playing early last year and only recently returned to find light attacks flying in at you while your parries and blocks felt slowed, that's why.

Ubisoft says it is currently working on addressing the issue, and noted that the dedicated servers may help it solve the lag problem - it can use them to now collect real-time player data that it can try to base a new system around.


Comments

    Too little too late, from my perspective. This whole issue was extremely predictable, and they launched the game with a blatant cost-driven flaw that's going to haunt it no matter how much they patch it up.

      I disagree. Look at how they have brought The Division back from the dead. And R6.
      The bones are good. with For Honor... I think with real support, they might very well save it.

      I hate the way that good games are canned before they have the chance to become great. It's interesting to see a company try something new here. As long as the live services don't kill it before it gets off the ground.

        They can improve it, sure. But they've missed their big launch window, and it's going to be virtually impossible to achieve anything close to the success it might've had if it wasn't in such a poor state at launch. That's what I mean when I say it's going to haunt it forever.

        This is especially true for Australia, where playerbase numbers can be a very real issue.

    Sounds good. I put 100 hours into For Honor on launch only for my disk drive in my PS4 to die so I sold the disk. The swordplay was great when you got into the zone. Agreed, the PvP drop outs were woeful in the early days. I keep thinking about getting back into it but Rainbow Six Siege is scratching my Ubi itch at the moment. Plus $100 for digital download on PSN. You've got to be kidding.

      It was on special for $20 a couple of months ago tben they jacked it back up just before the new characters for year 3 came in, sneaky devils

    As much as I see the Ubisoft's cynical push for live services for what it is (hint: it involves less development and more microtransactions) ... I have to admit they do it better than their competitors.

    The Division, Rainbow 6 Siege and now For Honor are all very solid games... with all of them seeing significant support over the past year. The Divison's 1.8 update literally catapulted it above Destiny 2, and Rainbow 5 Siege is arguably the new Counter Strike.

    For Honor was always a great game - but the lack of dedicated servers was a real bummer when it released. Teleporting ninja's wasn't what I signed up for. But it would have been a real shame to see all that great development work thrown away just because the game wasn't ideal at launch.

    Hopefully it will get next months PSN Plus free game slot.

    Played multiplayer for the first time about a week ago. Couldn't find anyone local. Ended up being matched with folks in Europe (I think) and the only games I could find were against AI. Also the players were extremely toxic. I may try again but I think this game is dead.

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