Played a bit of Mario Kart Wii with Lev today, and decided to check out WiFi Multiplayer. It was… sort of dead.
We started out in a pool of 4 players, which gradually expanded to 11, and then died back down to 3. You wouldn’t expect that, seeing as how the Mario Kart franchise is still very much alive, and there’s bound to be more than ~100 players playing (assuming pools are entered on a wait-time basis for the currently playing players).
Is it dead, competing against random strangers through the internet, via a somewhat old but still very popular game? Our pool never reached its maximum amount of entrants (12), though you would expect to see that happening occasionally, because Mario Kart is very popular. Maybe the amount of pools is still configured to be able to handle a large amount of players, like in the beginning of the MK Wii lifecycle, but that number has gotten lower, and the amount of pools hasn’t adapted accordingly?
To be honest, I’m pretty interested in finding out how they manage these kinds of multiplayer. On what basis are you thrown into a specific pool? Do pools manage themselves, creating new ones if all pools are close to full, and merging existing ones when a lot are empty? How powerful a server would you need for that? Does it run completely custom software? Why don’t I just try to look all this up?
Oh Fang, you curious bastard.