“You have died”… “FLAME WREATH. DON’T MOVE”
Sound familiar, how about:
“You are dead”… “Murmur draws energy from the air”
Z: “You coming?”
H: “Yeah I am right behind you!”
Z: “No your not…”
The common denominator… LAG!
No, this isn’t a QQ post….
I know many people live with Lag, it’s just some people are “blessed” with more than their fair share of it.
Living in Australia, my friends and I are extremely “blessed”.
I can live with it, or often die with it. I would be surprised if Blizzard are going to set up Oceanic located servers in this lifecycle stage of WoW, so I don’t have much choice. In fact with Mods like Quartz and a few tweaks to the windows networking settings I hardly notice. I have never experienced a relatively lag free WoW, so I don’t know what I am missing.
However it is there, and sometimes it is more apparent than other times.
Lagging? But you are sitting right next to me!
Recently I was at a LAN, and 6 out of our (then) 8 toons were present in the same room. Now the mind does funny things, and I had this background through that lag was going to be reduced – wrong of course. It has nothing to do with the proximity of the client PCs to each other, it’s all about the proximity of the server to the clients.
Anyway, these were some of my observations.
Flame Wreath (etc)
This was pretty consistent across the board. We were all getting the message from the server at about the same time… I just wish it was at the time the server was intending us to know… but I will come back to this.
Movement (and I guess therefore everything)
You are moving, you know you are moving, but your buddies don’t necessarily. This comes back to my sample conversation that I began this post with.
Two PC’s, sitting next to each other on the same table. One guy (let’s call him H) says to another guy (let’s call him Z)
H: “I am putting my toon on follow”
Z: “No worries”
… moments pass…
Z: “Hey H, did you put yout toon on follow?”
Z: “Why aren’t you following?”
H: “I am right behind you!”
Z: “Ohh you have caught up”
H: “on my screen I am right with you”
Z: “Ohh no your not, ohh here you come”
… and so on…
So two clients, sitting right next to each other, yet the toons are moving in their own time warp.
Now something unexpected I noticed.
2 odd seconds later, we hear the echo in our headphones, and more importantly, the other 2/8 hear the panicked call for “FLAME WREATH. DON’T MOVE” 2 seconds late.
Bizarre, and leads to these sort of communications (adding D who is remote, and G (local) – that’s me!)
Z (local): “FLAME WREATH. DON’T MOVE”
… 2 seconds later…
D (remote): “FLAME WREATH. DON’T MOVE”
Z (via TS): “FLAME WREATH. DON’T MOVE”
Z (local): “Watch out for Fred!”
D (remote): “Watch out for Fred!”
G (local): “Z just said that”
Z (via TS): “Watch out for Fred!”
G (via TS): “Z just said that”
So I guess my points are:
- If D moves during Flame Wreath even though you just called out over TS (or Vent), don’t assume D didn’t get the message, assume instead (got to start with a base assumption) that the message was just lurching around the internether for moment longer than you believed.
- When you yell out “HAELZ on me”, you can pretty much guarantee that your request is going to be heard 1-2 seconds after you made it.. by which time:
a) The heal is already on the way – maybe you already got it.
b) You are already dead and are just distracting the healer from a still living, but hurting toon.
Note: this applies to other things as well. From a Mage perspective Counterspell & sheep etc. I sure appreciate a hint that my sheep broke, or something needs to be interrupted, but….
- I either already know, or
- My lag means it’s already too late.
Don’t forget to add human reaction time into the mix.
WoW Lag + Human Lag + Comms lag = Too late
An example of where lag makes life difficult.
Murmur knocked us around for a long time. It didn’t effect me so much, I just stood outside the circle and blasted away.
But our Melee had a hell of a time. Whenever “Murmur draws energy from the air” our melee would find out 2 seconds later (and then get told about it 2 seconds later on TS).
Nett result = Dead Melee
Of course this was followed by (real time) torrents of abuse for moving running out. Why is abuse real time and warnings lagged? Well I am sure it is algged too, but it just doesn’t feel that way.
Anyway, I guess the point of this post is just to highlight lag both on a game and comms level. Don’t assume that because you have instant reflexes that others are slow – they may be just as fast as you, but lagging.
Tools for lag mitigation.
Sure you don’t NEED it for spell “queuing” any more, but it still helps in a laggy world.
Windows network settings
Some people recommend pointing to another provider to speed things up (or convince Blizzard and your PC that you are located in the USA and things have sped up).
I am a little wary of sending my comms via someone else, so i will just stick with these tips from the WoW forums
Howto: Reduce your Latency
Gnomer & Out!