I love Shunra’s emulator and network tools! In fact, we have Shunra\Cloud 4.0 in TMC Labs which we use to inject latency and packet loss when testing VoIP products. They also have another product called Shunra/Storm which enables users to emulate any network behavior including latency, jitter, packet loss, duplication, fragmentation, bit error rate, frame relay flow control, and more, giving users a true picture of application functionality under any network condition.
Apparently Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) has also learned about Shunra’s powerful network emulator tools and is using Shunra\Storm to proactively ensure that multi-player PlayStation 2 games are optimized for network gaming, including the Internet.
SCEE uses Shunra\Storm to test its internally developed PlayStation 2 games as well as those of licensed independent PlayStation 2 game developers. Shunra\Storm emulates a typical Internet environment, including the real-world network and remote-end-user conditions, particularly upstream bandwidth limitations and irregular periods of high latency. Games are then played in this environment to test functionality, performance and scalability. Through these tests developers can quickly and easily isolate and resolve any network related problems in their games’ code well before retail release, and assess the quality of the users’ experience under real-life Internet conditions. Additionally, the results of these tests help set Internet connectivity specifications for optimal gameplay.
“We found Shunra\Storm to be the best and most flexible solution to test the PlayStation 2 games under real life network conditions, and to help us optimize performance for our end users. Plus, its set-up was very easy, the user interface very complete and understandable, and the emulation technology very accurate,” said Kavallierou.
Through its PlayStation 2 Developer Network, SCEE is creating a knowledge-sharing user forum for network gaming testing. The purpose of the forum is to help developers test their network games more accurately, and expedite the testing process. It will provide expert advice, testing procedures, and access to Shunra\Storm’s network scenario files collated by SCEE, which developers can use during their own development and testing cycle.
Additionally, the forum will allow developers to download and use Shunra Software’s network recording technology so that they can capture their own network scenarios directly from actual end-users. These network scenario files will be shared with other developers and integrated into SCEE’s own tests. Through this collaborative testing process, SCEE and the game development community can ensure that PlayStation 2 games are tested under the most accurate and true-to-life conditions possible, and deliver high quality games that are optimized for network play well before titles are released onto the market.
“We are delighted that SCEE has standardized on Shunra\Storm to assure the quality and experience of the widely popular PlayStation 2 network games,” said David Hochhauser, VP Marketing at Shunra Software. “Furthermore, by establishing a user community around Shunra Software’s technology, SCEE is taking the lead in addressing distributed performance issues amongst online game developers. This forum will enable the PlayStation 2 developer community to test their games more accurately and completely, and deliver more stable products to market, which will ultimately benefit their customers.”
Now if only I can convince my boss that I need to buy a Playstation 2 to test Shunra’s testing capabilities in the labs.