AI War 2 v2.802 Multiplayer Steams Onward

New build! https://wiki.arcengames.com/index.php?title=AI_War_2:Finalizing_Multiplayer#2.802_Multiplayer_Steams_Onward

We briefly had a v2.801, but had to revert that because it had a couple of critical bugs. The changes from that have been included in this new build, which runs great. Overall this is just a laundry list of bugfixes and tweaks that people reported, but most of them are centered around multiplayer — specifically on Steam.

Our dalliance with the Steam P2P networking framework is likely coming to an end, because that was incredibly unreliable and a lot of people actually had commented that other games had problems with it, too. That leaves us with Steam Sockets, which is Valve’s newer networking model, but it doesn’t support multi-channel data, which causes a lot of slowdown for this specific game. Thankfully, Steam Sockets does support multiple ports, so I’ve adapted it to use four ports as if they were four channels, and the performance is through the roof from that. Additionally, we now support using Steam Sockets either in a relayed fashion (goes through Valve’s network, which they say is faster than the general Internet backbone, but varies a lot based on where you and your friends actually live), or via a direct fashion (just connects you and friends directly, even across a LAN if need be). The direct fashion is WAY faster in my experience, but it’s slightly more of a pain to set up (host tells others their IP).

Badger also slew his own dragon, which was a way for the AI threat against the dyson sphere to turn against you unexpectedly. It was actually a general memory leak that has been around since October 2019, as well, so this was really a great one to find and fix. Not sure how much this may have been negatively impacting performance in some games.

The load game menu also now performs better when you have a really huge number of savegames or campaigns. Previously it had an annoying delay when first opening.

Enjoy!

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