The free access FPS "Portal meet Halo" Splitgate has been around on the PC for a couple of years now, during which time it struggles to maintain a player base. According to Steam graphics, a reasonably strong release in May 2019 quickly fell to an average monthly count of concurrent players of just over 100. Things started to rise a bit in late 2020, but over the past week the count of players has exploded, to the point that it can be very difficult to match in a game.
The reason is the upcoming release of the console, scheduled for July 27, and more specifically the open beta version that is taking place right now. The beta version was released on July 13 with full playback between PC, Xbox and PlayStation and was an overwhelming success, to the point that the developer 1047 Games first expanded the beta version, and yesterday disconnected it completely because the servers were being crushed by demand. .
We have decided to withdraw the offline beta for tonight. It has been a difficult day trying to handle this scale and it is not fair for you. Everyone who has played the beta so far will get 5 drops as a token of our gratitude. Stay tuned for more updates and optimizations on the morning of July 22, 2021
The beta test is back, but unfortunately the capacity issues have not been resolved. "We spent the whole night optimizing more, but after talking to AWS (Amazon Web Services), we learned that our database (redis) can only handle 65,536 simultaneous players (which we achieved last night)." 1047 he tweeted. "So optimizations don't matter yet. We're working on a queuing system to let 65,000 people in until we remove that limitation."
Of course, a significant portion of this sudden surge in demand is driven by console gamers, but Steam is also experiencing a major surge: Steam Charts says more than 8,400 people are currently playing, on demand. And unfortunately, these server issues affect PC players along with the rest: both Morgan and I tried to sign in this afternoon, about 30 minutes apart, and we got this:
1047 said it hoped to implement a queue system "soon" to help better manage traffic, but also has a fixed tweet that is clearly aimed at managing expectations:
For those who don’t know, we are a small team of developers with a total of 4 engineers and have had over 500,000 downloads since the beginning of the beta version. We appreciate all the patience and support. We are really impressed🙏July 19, 2021
The longer-term question is whether Splitgate can keep those numbers after the console’s full release on July 27th. Hopefully, or at least something close to it: the much larger player base that includes cross-play makes it immediately more appealing, and as Morgan pointed out when he looked at a trio of new maps earlier this month, in reality is pretty good:Underestimated stage FPS that’s basically Halo if everyone was carrying a portal gun, ”which is definitely not the worst idea for a video game I’ve ever heard of.