Boost bug and other activated abilities might be affected by latency

@Netheos @chaton @Jellyfoosh

Hey guys,

Can one of you fellas put me in touch with a Tindalos Network Engineer? I think I might have a good lead on what's causing this Critical game-breaking defect. I know that Romain wrote to us that he was very interested in how we might be able to reproduce this issue.

To sum up: I think the defect is caused by the server/client desync caused by latency or dropped packets. The server essentially thinks that the Shift/AHF/Torps/whatever activated abilities are still in the 'active' state and because server takes priority over the client, it forces that state down to the client rendering the ability inactive.

Additional Info:
I was reviewing the footage on my stream because by the way I play, I seem to get it a lot compared to most people. This would also explain why reports of this happening mainly come from Eldar players compared to others. I have relatively high APM and issue a lot of command through hotkeys, clicks and whatever else. I have had this happen before to one ship, all ships, some ships, and any combination of the above Boost or Torps (sometimes both). This is because I often issue a lot of these commands in quick succession to each other, sometimes immediately within 1 second of each other. The most prominent example is Vaul's into Boost immediately after releasing Torps (T).

I tried to reproduce this multiple times locally using Skirmish and was never able to get it. However, I have seen this issue before in other companies I worked in and my hunch is that it could be due to the server/client logic. To further support this claim, there was a few nights last week that I had quite a bit of packet loss and ripples due to bad weather (confirmed using cmd/ping -t and OBS/Twitch for frames lost). I was seeing a greater # of this reproducing then than any other night. I also played against Brohan who lives in Australia and experienced it more then. However, in games where there's no ping issues and a steady connection, I do not see this issue at all.

My best guess steps to Repro would be:

  1. Connect to another player with P1 being Eldar.
  2. Have the Eldar player use clumsy to simulate lag; increasing latency by 100 all the way to 500:
    https://jagt.github.io/clumsy/download.html
  3. Use boost immediately after issuing another command and see if the defect happens.
  4. If not, repeat with Drop, Throttle, Ripples..etc

Expected Results:
The server communicates clearly with the game client and the ability is refreshed on cooldown.

Actual Results:
The active ability appears as used when it has not.

Suggestion:
A possible fix of this could be to have the server issue a pingback to the client and check if server cooldown for ALL abilities = correct cooldown time then set client state = true. But without seeing the actual server logic or talking to Tindalos SDEs I'm unsure if I can help further.

last edited by LKHERO

I think it can also spread, in which if it affects one ship if you then immediately select another group of ships, the disabled ability transfers onto them as well.

I just had a game where it affected my Phoenix, I used Shift on my unit of 3 cruisers, but then when I selected them again, Wraithbone Shift was no longer on cooldown and it was grey.

Hey @LKHERO
Thanks for your investigation on this issue. We've forwarded the information to the team.

last edited by Jellyfoosh