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don't shoot me for this one.

I'm wanting to get a few of us in our team (say 5 players) to start playing a network game in the office (you know... team building and all that ;) ) - thinking that Unreal Tournament 2004 will be the one. The only thing is we're a tiny bit worried zap too much network bandwidth and adversely affect other people in the office.

So, the "minimum" spec is 33.6kb/s modem (broadband recommended).

Our network (about 250 users, all one location) is a 1Gigabit lan split into 4 subnets with 10Gigabit links between the subnets.

Seems to me we'd be fine... but just wondered if someone with more networking knowledge than me can can be a little more scientific than this :)

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closed as off topic by Jason Berg, Iain, Shane Madden, MDMarra, Murali Suriar Sep 8 '11 at 19:36

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1  
We play COD4 here every noon at the office, no problem. I'll monitor my traffic tomorrow if you want. –  Bart De Vos Sep 8 '11 at 11:20
    
Hey, thanks TiZon :) that would be very cool –  Mark Sep 8 '11 at 11:57
    
The server is in the office? Pretty much zero effect. –  Steve-o Sep 8 '11 at 12:46
    
Ah, the good-old-days of college with two classes worth of students on a Unreal Tournament LAN... –  tombull89 Sep 8 '11 at 15:26

6 Answers 6

up vote 8 down vote accepted

Internet FPS games demand a medium-latency, low-bandwidth connection to the game server.

Your corp network provides a low-latency, high-bandwidth connection. Just about ideal.

It shouldn't cause any trouble whatsoever. If your company is large enough to monitor for 'unusual activity', it may not hurt to give the IT staff a quick heads up that this will be happening. They'll almost definitely just say 'Oh, no worries at all.'

Re: taking up too much network bandwidth - there's not just a fixed amount for the entire office. In a fully-switched network the only constraint is the router between subnets. Plus odds are that's done at the switches if they're smart enough. Your level of traffic shouldn't even be noticable.

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Are all the players close enough to each other to connect to a hub or switch?

When I used to play Unreal Tournament during lunch, we'd all unplug from the company network and connect to a switch some guy brought from home. We all had separate network cables running under the cubes for gaming. As some of us were a little further from the main group of players, some of the cables ended up being rather long.

We just unplugged the work cable from the back of our PCs and plugged in the other. When finished, we swapped cables again and got back to work. There was no need to log off of the domain or restart our PCs.

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If you have a managed switching infrastructure that supports netflow or sflow you could always monitor the traffic generated when you start your game to see if it within an acceptable range.

Like Bill Nye says, "Try it!" (and then let us know what your results were).

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If you have strict QOS policies on your switches, it might cause random anomolies with your gaming.. but not likely.

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Lets put it this way, back in 2003 I worked for a gaming review site. We all played FPSs in the afternoon. We only had like a 20 Meg circuit to the net and a 100 Meg LAN and everything was fine. There were probably 100 of us playing at a time.

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There are worse jobs :P –  Antoine Benkemoun Sep 8 '11 at 19:17
    
Yep. Had XBoxes and big screen TVs everywhere. Come 4 or 5 work stopped and it was officially game time. We always had the best ping times to the servers as we hosted like 200 game servers in our data center and we had a direct link to the data center. –  mrdenny Sep 8 '11 at 19:19

Totally unscientific answer:

Unreal 2004 uses like no data at all. I remember playing unreal tournament over a com link cable (128kbps) back in 2002~ between 2 players and it was fine.

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