Game Hosting: The Next Level for Your Online Games

Although most gamers are still buying conventional video games, an increasing number of gamers are buying digital games. Digital content has claimed nearly a third of the gaming market, and this accounts for more than $7 billion in revenue, according to a 2012 study by the Entertainment Software Association. To get a piece of this action, game developers need to develop compelling games, but more importantly, they need to find an effective hosting service that can help them bring their games to eager gamers. Check out reviews for PC games, and read on for what to look for when it comes to choosing a hosting service for your online game.

Defining Hosting

Game Hosting: The Next Level for Your Online Games

By giving your game space on their servers, a hosting service can help you bring your game to the masses. The range of services available from companies varies drastically depending upon which company you select for your hosting needs and which of their services you opt to purchase. While some hosting services offer their clients an individual server to utilize, others such as Windows VPS hosting have clients share a server.

Determining the Best Type of Hosting for Your Needs

In his online gaming blog, computer engineer John Kaniarz explains the hosting provider you select will also depend upon which type of game you have created. In most cases, you can divide games into three tiers based on the complexity of the game.

  • The bottom tier consists of simple and small games that can be hosted by almost any hosting service — you may even be able to host your simple game on your own server.
  • The top tier consists of massively multiplayer online (MMO) games that require a rack of servers that can each be assigned to run a different chunk of the game.
  • If your game is less complex than an MMO but requires flexibility in hosting, you may use a cloud-based hosting company that allows you to adjust the servers being used as the number of players using your game fluctuates.

Finding the Right Features

Once you have narrowed down your choices based on the complexity of your game, narrow your choices further based on the features each host provides. Many game developers want an easy-to-use platform. For developers who lack the tech savvy to run everything themselves, a comprehensive hosting service can be invaluable, as it allows developers to make changes or update their games with the click of a button, according to Web Host Industry Review. Developers who enjoy having more control over their games, however, may need to look for a host that allows them to work on their game without platform-based restrictions.

In their list of the top 10 hosting providers, GSP Rating outlines other features that are critical for a good hosting service. They recommend hosts who provide 24/7 customer support, and they advise developers to look for hosts that can provide fast service. Fifteen percent of gamers quit playing a game if they have to wait for more than 30 seconds, according to thewhir.com, and this can substantially ruin your efforts to attract more players to your game.

What web host for online gaming do you love? Which one would you recommend against? Let us know in the comments.

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