The mobile game, Sword and Expedition, launched by Lilith Games uses Alibaba Cloud Dynamic Route for CDN (DCDN) to accelerate dynamic content delivery and optimize the user experience. DCDN is used to reduce the latency of dynamic instructions, improve operation stability, and enhance the compatibility and security of the gaming platform.

Customer profile

Shanghai Lilith Technology Corporation (Lilith Games) is devoted to developing the most engaging mobile games and creating an unprecedented gaming experience for players around the world. Lilith Games adheres to the core strategies of globalization and categorized development. Based on the in-depth analysis of the global market and categorized development prospects, Lilith Games is expanding its international market share. Lilith Games has launched several popular games, including Sword and Expedition, Xiaobingbing Legend, and Awakening of All Nations.

Lilith Games ranked among the list of 2019 LinkedIn Top Companies and was listed in the 50 leading Chinese cross-border brands released by KPMG in the same year. From January to April 2020, Lilith Games had topped the list that is released by App Annie to include Chinese game companies with leading overseas revenues.

Challenges

The following list shows the challenges that Lilith Games faced before using DCDN:

  • Player input latency: Players are distributed across different provinces, cities, and regions in mainland China. There may be issues when multiple Internet service providers (ISPs) are used to deliver game content. Networking conditions are complex during game acceleration. When data transmission occurs between different regions and different ISPs, latency and network quality fluctuations may increase. This causes delay to dynamic game instructions and downgrades user experience.
  • Decreased smoothness of game content delivery: A rapid increase of online players within a short period of time may cause network congestion and increase network quality fluctuations. This may result in packet loss, and affect the content delivery and user experience.
  • Complex and insecure third-party acceleration networks: To reduce player interactions latency when third-party acceleration networks are used, the quality of nodes and infrastructure must be improved. Customized routing, protocol optimization methods, terminal health checks, and intelligent routing policies are also required. Core links vulnerable to attacks: If attacks occur in core links, workloads may experience unstable network quality and interruptions and impact your business.

Solutions

DCDN can be used to solve the preceding challenges.
Figure 1. Architecture of DCDN IP Application Accelerator (IPA)
Architecture of DCDN IPA
  • Proprietary protocols are used to control the transmission between edge nodes and L2 nodes. This ensures high availability, and stabilizes efficient transmission.
  • The intelligent routing system is used to identify the optimal paths from users to an origin server within the network. This further improves the service availability and transmission rate.

Benefits

  • Reduce the player input latency:
    • Optimized deployment of high-quality nodes: DCDN provides a large number of nodes that support ISPs from different provinces, cities, and regions in mainland China. Players can access the closest nodes to them and ensure stable connections with low latency. DCDN solves network bottlenecks issues caused by communication across regions and different ISPs.
    • Intelligent routing to minimize the latency: DCDN uses global detection to collect transmission latency data from nodes in real time. This allows DCDN to dynamically adjust the routing rules based on node conditions. You can use this feature to minimize the latency of player inputs and online interactions.
    • Protocol optimization: DCDN uses a proprietary transmission protocol that is developed by Alibaba Cloud. Compared with traditional TCP-based communication, the optimized protocol can solve the issues caused by the slow start mechanism, congestion control, and data retransmission. This allows you to make full use of bandwidth resources and further enhance data transmission efficiency.
  • Improve the stability of game operations:
    • Intelligent routing to minimize the packet loss rate: DCDN uses global detection to obtain packet loss data between nodes in real time. This allows DCDN to dynamically adjust the routing rules based on node conditions. You can use this feature to ensure stable processing of dynamic game instructions and optimal packet transmission paths.
    • Multi-channel transmission: DCDN replicates the data of dynamic game instructions and interactions to multiple channels and concurrently transmit the data through these channels. Compared with single-channel transmission from a single data source, multi-channel transmission allows you to minimize network jitter.
    • Seamless failover: DCDN enables seamless failovers to ensure smooth user experience if a failover occurs. This allows game players to enjoy stable service performance.
  • Enhance service compatibility and security:

    DCDN is developed based on the Alibaba Cloud CDN infrastructure, protocol optimization, and intelligent routing system. You can use DCDN to maximize the data transmission rate and service availability, especially in poor network conditions. IPA uses a proxy to forward client requests without any changes to the packets. This protects the privacy of clients. Simple configurations on the origin server can allow you to obtain client IP addresses. Distributed deployment of nodes can protect the service against attacks.

Customer values

  • Optimized user experience: DCDN minimizes network latency and improves user experience.
  • Cost reduction: DCDN allows you to deploy all Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) network resources of your origin server over a single acceleration network. This reduces the bandwidth costs of origin servers by more than 50%.
  • Flexibility and security: You can use DCDN to accelerate your applications based on simple configurations. Client requests are forwarded to your origin severs without any changes to the packets. DCDN provides security protections against distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks and web application attacks.

Related service

DCDN

DCDN is developed based on multiple technologies, including separated delivery acceleration between dynamic content and static content, edge caching, intelligent routing, and transmission compression. This service provides an all-purpose solution to resolve high latency issues, packet loss, and service instability. Different possible causes are included. For example, your website contains both static and dynamic content or the content is delivered across ISPs. The issues may arise if your network is unstable or a network congestion happens. The issues may also occur if only one origin server is used or network traffic spikes. You can use DCDN to improve the overall performance of your website and accelerate content delivery to improve user experience.

For more information, see Product page of DCDN.