what is a game server

What is a Game Server?

So, you want to learn what a game server is and the basics of dedicated hosting? You’ve likely encountered dedicated game servers in your gaming adventures, from sophisticated MMOs to simple puzzle games. But what is a game server, and why is dedicated hosting the best option? So, let’s take a deep dive into the world of dedicated servers and discuss why opting for dedicated hosting benefits all kinds of gamers.

Quick Review of Key Points

A game server is a dedicated server used for online gaming. It allows players to connect over the internet and provides the platform to facilitate their gameplay experience.

What is a Gaming Server?

A dedicated gaming server is a specialised machine used to host online video games and other related multimedia content. The machine may be hosted on private premises, with the user being responsible for the security and upkeep of the network, or it may be hosted by an external hosting provider that specialises in providing rapid access to servers for gaming. Generally speaking, these servers offer a more robust infrastructure than simpler forms of hosting, such as web hosting.

On the one hand, gaming servers are beneficial because they can provide gamers with the ability to connect to their favourite games and experience intense multiplayer experiences without having to worry about lag or graphical issues. Dedicated game servers usually allow gamers to control multiple characters and modify settings, so each team has its own look and feel. Additionally, dedicated game servers provide improved protection against malicious attacks, giving gamers greater peace of mind when playing their favourite games.

On the other hand, however, gaming servers can come at a high physical and financial cost. Users must account for the hardware resources, software licences, and networking equipment required to run their server. Furthermore, they must continuously monitor the performance of their machines and environments over time to ensure optimal performance levels. While these costs can often be outweighed by their advantages in speed and reliability, users would need to avail themselves of robust support services to respond quickly and effectively to any potential problems or questions that may arise.

In conclusion, gaming servers provide gamers access to a secure environment to enjoy fast and responsive multiplayer experiences, but at a potentially high digital and financial cost – making them best-suited for those seeking stable server capabilities for intensely competitive gaming sessions. In the following section, let’s explore how game servers host multiplayer games to understand better how such a system works.

How Does a Game Server Host Multiplayer Games?

When online gaming was in its infancy, gamers required a computer to host the game and serve as a connexion hub for other gamers. Unfortunately, this setup resulted in players using their resources to host games, often resulting in a chaotic and unbalanced gaming experience.

The advent of the game server changed all of that. A game server is essentially just a dedicated hosting space for running one or more multiplayer games simultaneously. A dedicated server space with centralized resources vastly improves the multiplayer gaming experience over what players could achieve prior.

A dedicated game server can process large amounts of data quickly and respond explicitly to instructions from each player without any lag or latency issues that would otherwise arise on an overcrowded machine. Furthermore, since dedicated servers are hosted at remote locations, latency is generally very low – meaning that geographically distant players can still play together relatively smoothly.

Naturally, there are some drawbacks associated with using a dedicated server. Generally, authoring a custom game can be expensive due to hardware requirements, hosting costs and maintenance fees. Additionally, leasing server space comes with the potential issue of unexpected downtime due to hardware failure or network outages – both of which can spell disaster for mission-critical systems like multiplayer gaming services.

On balance, though, it’s easy to see why many prefer running their games on a dedicated server. There’s simply no substitute for the robustness and reliability of this setup. Once correctly configured for optimal performance and efficiency, the benefits of dedicated servers far outweigh any drawbacks – providing ease of use and cost-effectiveness challenging to replicate elsewhere in the industry.

Regarding multiplayer gaming, having access to the right dedicated server resources can make all the difference in how well players can cooperate during any session. With this in mind, let’s explore some ways to maximise your money further when it comes time to look for a provider for your own game server needs – what we now focus on in the following section: Dedicated Servers.

Dedicated Servers

Dedicated servers are a popular choice for businesses and video game developers that need complete control over their server hosting environment. With a dedicated server, you’ll be able to access the resources of a single server and be responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the entire system. In addition, this type of hosting offers many advantages over shared hosting, such as unlimited bandwidth, increased storage capacity and complete administrative control.

However, dedicated server hosting poses some disadvantages compared to other web or game server hosting forms. The cost can be significantly higher than shared hosting, up to 10 times more in some cases due to hardware costs. In addition, maintenance and upkeep are solely the responsibility of the business, which may require hiring an IT specialist dedicated to server maintenance.

For these reasons, it’s essential to carefully weigh the pros and cons before deciding if a dedicated server is suitable for your needs. With proper management and planning, a dedicated server can provide superior performance without breaking the bank.

In conclusion, while dedicated servers can provide many advantages, they may not always be the most cost-effective option for businesses and video game developers with limited budgets. In the next section, we’ll discuss hosted servers as another potential alternative for those looking for reliable and affordable solutions to their game server hosting needs.

Hosted Servers

Hosting a game server entails utilising the resources of a provider to run your gaming application on a dedicated piece of hardware. The provider manages and monitors hosts servers, eliminating the need for local infrastructure or technical know-how. These services can be tailored based on capacity and performance requirements to meet specific needs.

On the one hand, hosting a game server can provide numerous benefits, such as greater control over system operations and improved scalability. On the other hand, this model ensures that the gaming experience is always consistent and uninterrupted. Additionally, it’s more cost-efficient compared to managing local hardware and personnel.

On the other hand, hosted servers may not be suitable for all organisations or scenarios. Due to the managed nature of the service, certain features may not be supported or customizable. This could lead to incompatibility with specific software, third-party applications, or security protocols. Therefore, it’s essential to consider these elements before selecting a hosted solution.

By leveraging hosted servers for gaming applications, organisations can enjoy greater flexibility and simplified management without sacrificing the quality of service. In the following section, we dig deeper into this topic to explore the potential benefits of using a game server.

What are the Benefits of Using a Game Server?

Using a game server is an effective way to provide dedicated and reliable hosting for online gaming. Dedicated game servers can provide an enhanced gaming experience compared to regular hosting services. They allow for advanced customizations and configuration options to fit individual players’ specific needs and preferences. Additionally, they often feature increased stability, security, and cost savings in comparison to other types of hosting.

From a cost standpoint, game servers are generally more affordable than other hosting services—especially when rental plans are taken into consideration since those may not require costly upfront investments. Combined with specific software licences, these plans can result in significant savings for online gaming businesses. Furthermore, due to their powerful hardware specifications, game servers are well-suited for applications that demand high throughput performance—which allows companies to keep pace with rapidly growing user bases without spending excessive amounts on infrastructure upgrades.

On the downside, however, dedicated game servers may be expensive at the outset and may require ongoing maintenance costs after setup. In addition, users who don’t have extensive technical expertise may find it challenging to run their own game servers efficiently and effectively. As a result, considerable research should be undertaken before investing in any dedicated server solution.

Nevertheless, when appropriately used, game servers can offer significant performance and cost benefits, which may far surpass those traditional hosting services provide. Thus, it’s no surprise that more and more gamers and organisations are taking advantage of the wide range of services offered by dedicated game servers.

With this in mind, let’s explore who uses game servers to power their online gaming needs in the following section.

Who Uses Game Servers?

Game servers have become popular with various users, from individual gamers playing at home to large corporations hosting massive online games. As a result, the capabilities and power of game servers are highly valued in today’s gaming environment.

In gaming, game servers are essential in hosting game sessions for players who want to compete against each other or cooperate on projects. This makes them invaluable for gamers who regularly test their skills in head-to-head battles. They also provide a platform for large gaming communities where players can communicate with one another and share tips, stories and experiences with like-minded gamers.

Corporate clients typically use game servers for multiplayer networked environments and 3D simulations. Additionally, companies often find it convenient to create and host their digital assets on their server, which can then be accessed by their users and customers worldwide while providing a level of security that third-party solutions cannot match. This makes game servers invaluable for companies and organisations wanting to maintain control over their data and host interactive applications securely to their user base.

On the one hand, some disagree that individual gamers or small companies have any use for game servers due to the perceived cost and complexity associated with dedicated hosting. On the other hand, however, others contend that there are various benefits to using game servers, such as improved connexion speeds between gaming hosts and the ability to customize a secure environment which provides better reliability than consumer grade hosted solutions.

Overall, it is evident that game servers are precious to all types of users regardless of size or type due to the flexibility and control they offer compared to shared hosting services. As such, this growing segment of dedicated hosting has benefited many businesses seeking more comprehensive support than traditional web hosting can offer.

The following section will explore further these practical implications by examining the cost of running a game server and whether or not it is within reach of most users.

  • A dedicated game server offers various services, including hosting, virtualization and connected storage.
  • According to a report by Statista, the global market for game servers is expected to exceed $1.7 billion by 2024.
  • An analysis conducted in 2019 found that most game servers are hosted on public cloud instances, with Linux as the predominant operating system.

Are Game Servers Costly?

When considering the cost of game servers, many variables must be considered. The price can vary greatly depending on the type of server and the number of players it will support. Additionally, monthly fees may be associated with hosting and running a dedicated gaming server.

The overall cost will depend mainly on the provider and the player base you want to accommodate. Finding more affordable solutions is possible if you’re looking to host a smaller group of players. However, if you’re looking to host an entire gaming community or larger scale game server with more powerful features and hosting requirements, you’ll have to invest in more costly solutions.

Another factor that could add to the cost is the hardware required for an optimal gaming experience. For example, certain games require more powerful processors or additional RAM than others, which can increase either setup fees or ongoing costs. Some providers may even charge extra for additional services, such as installation and setup help for new users.

On the one hand, some dedicated game servers can be pretty expensive compared to other forms of hosting, such as shared hosting. On the other hand, gamers who don’t want their performance limited by a shared environment may see fit to make the additional investment to ensure their server runs smoothly without worrying about noisy neighbours or security threats from outside sources. Ultimately, it comes down to what you’re willing to spend to get an optimal gaming experience that meets your needs while still within your budget.

In conclusion, there is no single answer when it comes to whether or not dedicated game servers are costly. As mentioned above, various factors such as provider, hardware requirements, and setup fees can play into the decision making process when deciding how much money is necessary for hosting a gaming server. The following section will discuss how these factors should be weighed when making this critical decision.

Does running a game server require any special software?

Yes, running a game server usually requires special software. This is because game servers are responsible for allowing players to interact with each other in the game. Therefore, the game server’s software needs to support the communication protocols used by the game and be optimized to cope with high traffic and latency. Popular game servers include Source Dedicated Server (SDS), Unreal Engine Server (UES) and Valve’s Source Engine.

Additionally, many games come with their server software explicitly designed for them. Overall, running a game server requires special software, which must be chosen depending on the type of game being hosted.

What type of hardware is required for a game server?

A game server requires powerful hardware to run effectively. The main components include a processor, RAM, storage, and a fast network connexion.

The processor is essential for running the server’s code and maintaining its performance. High end servers require the latest Intel or AMD processors, such as i7 or Ryzen 5/7. These will provide the raw processing power needed to handle large numbers of players and their demands.

RAM is also essential for game servers; this allows them to store data temporarily while it’s being processed or used. Low-end servers may only need 8GB of RAM; high-end servers should be geared up with 16GB or more.

Storage is necessary to store user files and server information; this includes accounts, maps, player information, and more. Generally, it’s best to have at least 250GB of storage space to accommodate these demands.

Lastly, game servers require a high speed internet connexion for players to play smoothly without lag or buffering issues. Therefore, ensuring your server has a reliable connection before launching games is essential.

How often does a game server need to be updated?

The frequency of game server updates depends upon the platform and game the server hosts. Generally, games and platforms should be updated regularly to ensure maximum performance and stability for gamers. If a game or platform is frequently updated, game servers should be corrected immediately; otherwise, significant problems can affect gameplay.

For example, small bug patches and minor updates may not require immediate updating of game servers, while hefty content additions or significant system changes often do. Ultimately, it’s best to update your game server whenever new versions are released to avoid any unexpected issues that could arise.


In conclusion, game servers are powerful tools that allow gamers to play their favourite games without fear of lag or disruption. Professionally hosted game servers provide outstanding enhanced features and performance that traditional unhosted or dedicated server solutions cannot offer. For gaming enthusiasts, having a game server can be a great way to get more out of the gaming experience and ensure no player has an unfair advantage. Hosting a game server can be a bit expensive, but the benefits far outweigh the initial investment.

Hosting a dedicated game server also has some disadvantages. It requires players to have specialized knowledge to set up and manage the server properly. Additionally, there are security risks associated with any online connexion, and players should consider these when deciding whether or not to host their server. Some players may prefer publicly hosted servers where the service provider handles all maintenance and security issues.

Overall, professionally hosted dedicated game servers provide many advantages for gamers looking for more sophisticated experiences than traditional unhosted games. Costly setup fees aside, most gamers should find a dedicated game server well worth their money and time invested in creating the best gaming environment possible for themselves and their friends. With the proper setup and care, a dedicated server can provide an excellent platform for top-level gaming performance than any other hosting solution can’t match.