PUBG Netcode Analysis Reveals Surprisingly Low 17 Hz Tick Rate
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) has been suffering from several technical and online issues in recent months, for which the developer has promised optimizations and improvements before the end of the year. However, unknown by majority of the community, the connectivity situation is more dire than it appears.
In another in-depth analysis to discuss online network models, Battle(non)sense compared the netcode of PUBG and Fortnite. Both are recent releases, share a common battle royale mode, are powered by the Unreal Engine, and utilize Amazon Web Services (AWS) for their online servers. On that basis, the performance should be relatively the same as well. Unfortunately, it is not.
Unlike other multiplayer games, PUBG and Fortnite do not have a fixed tick rate. The servers vary in performance, starting from a terribly low tick rate due to the high player-count at the beginning of a match and gradually improving towards the end. The design can hardly be appreciated since the delay and responsiveness is subject to change based on the number of players. There is no way that anyone can accurately familiarize themselves with the gameplay because of the way the servers are meant to work for both games.
The PUBG servers have been discovered to send just eight updates per second when the match begins, eventually reaching sixteen updates per second when the first thirty players die. The overall tick rate comes to about 17 Hz, which is not only lower than Fortnite but also other multiplayer games.
It is even more worrisome to know that the PUBG servers were actually performing better back in July. Whatever improvements the developer claimed to have introduced in the past months have apparently resulted negatively. This is probably due to the large number of new players incoming each month, further increasing the stress on the online infrastructure.
In another short comparison; Battlefield 1, which often gets bashed for its region-locked model, does far better than PUBG. It should also be noted that Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) players always complain about 60 Hz servers for the added delay and sluggish movements. PUBG is not even half that.