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Author Topic: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers  (Read 2964 times)

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Offline MovedGoalPosts

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BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« on: 28 October 2015, 10:19: AM »
It appears these have been introduced as an option under the latest patch, subject to the Game Server Providers (GSP).  Higher tickrate places added demand on server hardware, and both server and client bandwidth.  It is expected to cost more to rent a server.  At the moment our GSP, Fragnet, are "testing the options", so we don't know costs or availability.

Why is tickrate important?
It now emerges that the default server runs at a rate of 30Hz.  An equivalent of 30 updates a second (compare that perhaps to your desired graphics card framerate where it is recommended that shouldn't drop below 60 frames a second), equivalent to a delay of 33ms.
Options are being tested that might allow rates up to 144Hz i.e 144 updates a second, delay 6.5ms
The larger slot count of the server, the more demanding the hardware needs.  The 144hz rate might be possible only for player counts below 20.

Netcode
Ever since BF4 came out people have complained about "netcode", to explain poor hit detection that you get shot when you've ducked back behind something, or a shot misses the other player yet you believed it should have hit.  In practice, if the server tickrate is too low then information simply isn't getting too and from the server to the clients accurately enough to deal with the fine movements our players are always making.

Battlelog Filters
The recent patch, and battlelog now shows the server tickrate.  Try and find one with say a 60Hz setting and contrast it to a 30Hz setting.  Does it feel different and more responsive?  Most posts I'm seeing on this say it is a game changer.

The Downside
It will cost more to run a higher tickrate server due to both hardware use (GSPs will have fewer servers on a box), and bandwidth.
Any weakness in a client's broadband connectivity will also show up with packet loss, latency issues, etc.  Your PC may receive more updates than the GPU can cope with refreshing, if you have too much eye candy set up.  The link below gives descriptions of some of the icons you might see in game, warning of poor client performance.

What will NTHW do?
Please do try out a higher tickrate server.  Let us know what you think about the play, better, worse, no difference, etc?
Once Fragnet indicate availability and costs, we can reconcile this against the feedback and make a decision if we are upgrading or not.

bit.ly/bf4highticrateservers
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Offline Stormpr00ter

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #1 on: 28 October 2015, 11:35: AM »
Subject to feedback from clanners about higher tickrates - a general rule of thumb is that the faster and more often the server processes all the data, the more accurately the gameplay is experienced by the players - less emphasis on workarounds like lag compensation are required - it should be the case that players are given a sharper, more responsive experience. Also, it means those with higher pings will benefit less from innacurate lag compensation - which is usually the main cause of folks shouting "No way! that hit you in the head you hacking bastard!".

Offline Ramrod

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #2 on: 28 October 2015, 12:13: PM »
CONFIRMING HIGH TICKRATE 
How do I know that I am playing on a high tickrate
server? Shortly Battlelog will include filters and
server properties for the tickrate, but until then
the best way to confirm if a server runs a specific
tickrate is to look at:

The loading screen icon & number (bottom left corner)

The spawn screen tickrate value (top left corner)

The Network Overlay (enable under gameplay options/advanced)
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Offline bopdude

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #3 on: 28 October 2015, 12:34: PM »
It says so after the server name in the server browser whether it's 30 or 60, played one quick game, seems to play better, I'll do more testing later
« Last Edit: 28 October 2015, 03:32: PM by bopdude »

Offline Spanner

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #4 on: 28 October 2015, 12:39: PM »
So...

I have V-Sync enabled and run a rock solid 60fps. Any server with a tick rate higher than this will cause me glitches in game? Ideally I'd want to find a server with a tickrate of 60fps?
I don't like running without v-sync as the little screen tearing does my swede in!

• Low FPS
Warning: Your Frames Per Second dipped below the current tickrate – maintaining a framerate
HIGHER than the tickrate is recommended at all times. Playing with a lower framerate can cause
smaller glitches.

Severe: Your Frames Per Second dipped below a very low value – indicating that your computer
is croaking under the added load of the high tickrate. Leave the server and find one which runs a
less high tickrate or lower your settings until it goes away.

Offline Bill C

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #5 on: 28 October 2015, 12:49: PM »
Will give it a try and see if it makes the game better for me


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Offline Stormpr00ter

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #6 on: 28 October 2015, 12:58: PM »
So...

I have V-Sync enabled and run a rock solid 60fps. Any server with a tick rate higher than this will cause me glitches in game? Ideally I'd want to find a server with a tickrate of 60fps?
I don't like running without v-sync as the little screen tearing does my swede in!

• Low FPS
Warning: Your Frames Per Second dipped below the current tickrate – maintaining a framerate
HIGHER than the tickrate is recommended at all times. Playing with a lower framerate can cause
smaller glitches.

Severe: Your Frames Per Second dipped below a very low value – indicating that your computer
is croaking under the added load of the high tickrate. Leave the server and find one which runs a
less high tickrate or lower your settings until it goes away.

I think it would only be a problem if the increased tick rate caused your fps to drop below 60 when running vsync on. From what I remember from my DirectX programming days, vsync only affects when the next frame is rendered on the monitor - each frame is constantly compiled behind the scenes as fast as your machine can go, if your machine is knocking out the next frame faster than 60 per second, some will get skipped and you'll get the latest one. If your monitor refresh rate is 60hz, getting any more fps displayed is pretty much a waste of power.
I dunno if that makes much sense or is any help - I guess the only way to find out is to test it out.

Offline Spanner

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #7 on: 28 October 2015, 01:13: PM »
No makes perfect sense and exactly how I understood it.

Offline bopdude

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #8 on: 28 October 2015, 06:10: PM »
I've just been on one that stated it was running at 40 htz ?

Offline MovedGoalPosts

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #9 on: 28 October 2015, 07:46: PM »
Seems there are lots of new ticket rates possible.  40Hz could be an option, especially for those with the big player slot counts.
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Offline bopdude

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #10 on: 28 October 2015, 08:20: PM »
Yeah it was a 64 man server :tu:

Offline IMPz

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #11 on: 28 October 2015, 10:13: PM »
I played on a conquest large server last nigh running at 60Hz, based in German (I think) and although I got the flashing orange sysbols it still played OK for me.

Could not say if I was any better or worse playing it, I was trying out the new map, which I like.

Offline MovedGoalPosts

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #12 on: 30 October 2015, 10:42: AM »
So last night played a couple of 60Hz servers.  It's quite difficult, given my lack of skill to really know if anything changes.  But, I did get a feeling sort of semi sniping using a DMR over a moderate distance that it was a bit more accurate.  But then they have also patched stuff that may have affected the feel of some guns :shrug:

What was apparent was the number of yellowed and occasional orange coloured icons.  These were variously signifying packet loss, latency (ping) variation, and frame rate.  In practice I realise I get most of these on our 30Hz server, so is this an issue?

I don't usually worry about frame rate for my display.  I have a GTX970 so the card should be fine on the highest settings.  Turning it on I realised the rate was getting capped and so running at 58-60 FPS.  If the server tick rate is 60Hz, the frame rate dropping out of sync even to 58 would be enough to get the FPS warning icon.  But my monitor is 60Hz and I had the v-sync setting on in BF4's video settings.  Turn that off, the frame rate jumped to 90-110, no more of those warnings. So that is that concern solved :)

That doesn't explain the packet loss / latency icons.  I do have the VM 100meg service, so in theory speed should be good enough.  I suspect BF4 is particularly sensitive to packet loss, i.e. client or server not receiving complete data in a timely manner.  I'm often running other stuff on my network, even if I shut it down for gaming, I suspect there are still external clients that may be trying to connect to stuff not there.  That could affect my connection.  I have no idea what TeamSpeak does, which should have a good traffic priority, to game data traffic priority, but even with a fast connection, it stands to reason only one bit of data can physically move at a time, and that creates a queue which might be minute, but it's still a queue.

Perhaps some packet loss / latency variation is inevitable, and the game is warning unnecessarily?  I suppose it comes down to whether it appears to affect the game play, and last night I didn't think it did ???
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Offline Spanner

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #13 on: 30 October 2015, 02:03: PM »
I've had the packet loss icons in varying amounts since they introduced them. Personally I wish I could turn them off as it's just a distraction in my opinion, something put there to appease the "netcode" theorists.

I'd need a good few nights gaming to see if the difference is placebo or not. My drunken session last night only proved to me that I get worse the second the Hobgoblin bottle top is removed!

Offline damien c

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #14 on: 30 October 2015, 03:25: PM »
The higher the tick rate the better the "Experience" should be for those with fast connections and fast enough pc's that can cope with high tick rate.

The issue is the netcode with the game is just stupidly poor, and this video is one I did month agos before they started to properly look in to it but since one of the patches introduced a issue where the game stop's picking up my mouse for a few milliseconds and then picks it back up, it's not even worth me bothering with it anymore.




Maybe with Battlefield 6/7 they will get it about right but given the way they are going with Battlefront I don't think there will be servers as we are use to in the next Battlefield game so, we probably won't have to worry about that as they will hide your ping like they have done in Battlefront so you don't know what country you are connecting to a server in.

Offline MovedGoalPosts

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #15 on: 30 October 2015, 04:53: PM »
OK, despite Damien's scepticism on the benefits, Fragnet have got their act together and I can order stuff.  Costs aren't that bad, and we do have funds that this could be worth experimenting on.
For example, the 20 slot server, for 3 months rises from £40.50 (30Hz normal) to £46.44 (60Hz).
I suggest that, for FNG a few of us search for 60Hz and play around and give some honest thought.
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Offline Ramrod

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #16 on: 30 October 2015, 07:14: PM »
We could invade a server later
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Offline Ramrod

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #17 on: 31 October 2015, 10:08: AM »
I thought that the higher tickrate server we played on was smoother and the kills were somehow easier. What I shot at died if I was aiming correctly......if that makes sense  :tu:
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Offline bopdude

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #18 on: 31 October 2015, 10:32: AM »
It does and it seemed ok ish, hard to tell where my problems were :shrug: combination probably, but nothing I can't live with :tu:

Offline MovedGoalPosts

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Re: BF4 Higher Tickrate Servers
« Reply #19 on: 31 October 2015, 02:19: PM »
I'm splashing the cash ......
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