Low to free cost game server hosting [Idea need]

Hi there,

Long time no see.

I’m searching for “relative low or free” game server solution. To be specific, I want to find somewhat cloud service providers that can host java game server - JME3 server if could. Evaluating solutions may also raise questions about technologies that can be used along, the scale, the cost… and with other pros and cons. Don’t know if anyone have a managable solution?

Currently, our company using NodeJs servers with Websocket at Heroku for about 300$/month for a few small games. We planning to try Play as game server also via Websocket and JME3 and Libgdx client.

Recently, IBM introduce Bluemix and I’ve joined 2 seminars about the service already.

Seems good for game because they can use Docker to open “restricted” ports for games not just http port like others. In the mean time, they also use NodeRed - an editor for online services and messages which I think will become a popular technology in next year. So using Bluemix is in researching also.
I want to know if anyone has other things in mind right now? Every help is appreciated!

For my hobby server I used Digital Ocean. You basically get a linux machine with a public IP.


@jmaasing: DigitalOcean look pretty good. Thanks for the recommendation!

A small cons is I have to setup all the things I want. I will take time for the team to open up new server if the game get more players.

About the price is great, maybe I can use 300$ for 2 machine with 16GB, 8 Core; one for my application, one for database. Look like that also have server farm in Singapore which is nice for us.

Can you share more experience using the service, for ex: downtime, support…And I don’t see anywhere they talking about the bandwidth restriction or such?

gasp I can see why you’d want to switch.

For sanity, I always use AWS as my “upper bound” and I could get a super-killer plan for $300 a month. Don’t know what kind of machine you were getting for that, though.


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I only hosted a few service I used myself so no real traffic to the machine. I shut down that machine a couple of months ago so I’m currently not using Digital Ocean. During the 18 months I used their services there was I think 1 scheduled downtime of a few minutes when they changed something in their network infrastructure. Other than that I have no complaints, things just worked, both technically and administratively (bills came on time, their web interface worked fine). Afaik there are no bandwidth limits since you pay for the traffic they will happily just seel you more :smile:

https://www.linode.com/pricing might be another place to look at, seems alright.

I have a list reasons not to go for AWS for production right now. (I’m using it to develop personal apps too).

In the top of the list is AWS require more works to setup things. I know it’s not too much for one or two games but we have in heroku like 40 prototype already which require to build up various type of application structure, therefore the cost of software should also be low… The development team just grab an idea and get a build pack and deploy. Later the mostly abandon the app right away. That’s why we choose Heroku at first, it’s free for the first dynos (same as the elastic compute), and a lot of softwares like mongodb are also free for enough to test against relative small amount of users. That simple thing is definitely must have for ust. May be in the past, because of doing a lot of prototypes make us to choose a service that suite more for that purpose. In next year, we going up for more mature game and outside of the country, we change our planning to ultilize AWS.

Thanks for the recomendation, Linode is alike DigitalOcean options above, good and cheap. The downside is efforts in softwares need to provision and scale an app. May be docker will remove more than 70% of the effort but still…

I wasn’t recommending them… as I said, I use them as the “upper bound”… ie: if you are paying more than you’d pay on AWS then you are paying way too much.

I am using Amazon, free for 1 year, its working pretty well.

I use amazon and it costs me like 0.40$/month during testing. After that i believe it still scales really well.

Yes, I like amazon a lot too. We use them in my day job… I think they are the best but I would not consider them the cheapest necessarily. But because they are the best, if you pay more somewhere else then you are throwing good money to bad.

In prototyping duration, we also have bots to test actual workload, need more compute power than just a few developers testing. We have like 10 prototypes being test in one month, that’s why our bill never under 200$/month :smile: of course we actually use more than 2 dynos for a single game/web server at a time. May be now we should pay for a whole “physical server” (like what AWS or DigitalOcean offer) and use it for testing multiple games purpose. It maybe cheaper but need a lot of setup (Nothing is perfect I guess)