Video Game Tips: Incorporate Purposeful Practice To Improve Your Game

What is purposeful practice? It’s practice in a way where every moment counts. Where every rep, shot, stroke, or whatever the action may be is accomplished with complete focus and accurate feedback. There is a purpose going into a practice session and a determination to better the results afterwards. It’s not just going through the motions but constantly pushing the boundaries to see what is really possible. Only then can a player, person, and/or athlete truly grow.

That’s great, but how does this relate to competitive gaming and Halo 5? I didn’t completely grasp it until I sat down and talked with one of the best Halo 5 pros out there. “We practice more than anyone else, honestly. We know our weaknesses and work tirelessly at them.” This Halo professional went on to discuss how he incorporated purposeful practice through creating his own practice map.

By going into the Halo 5 game mode called Forge, he created a map with explosive targets that were evenly spread throughout. He then gave himself practice drills, such as how many of the explosive targets he could hit with each weapon in 90 seconds. This tested both accuracy and speed of shots. This would be done for all of the weapons in Halo 5, from the Sniper Rifle down to the Needler. He would then expand these drills to incorporate strafing, which is a motion from side to side to avoid being hit by incoming shots. After the 90 seconds was up, he would again note how many targets he hit with each weapon. His goal for next time would be to increase the number of targets he could hit in that same time frame. He would test not only his weapon skills, but also his grenade skills. By placing targets in hard to reach locations, he would need to execute precise grenade tosses to take them out.

So how does this help you? You can take the same measures a Halo 5 pro takes and incorporate them into your own game. By going into Forge mode, placing several explosive targets throughout the map, and then incorporating drills with a timer, you can work on your skills and have accurate feedback. You can note whether you are progressing or not and set accurate goals based on your skills. Whether your goal is to be a Halo 5 pro or just have more fun, purposeful practice will help you.

How to Get a Game Server Hosted

First of all what are game server providers, GSPs, and why do I need one? If, like me, you love playing games with your other online gaming buddies you generally play together online. You and your team need a playground that will provide the online space for you to. How and where does all that information get processed? There are two main methods.

The first is peer to peer. Peer to peer is a well established protocol of information sharing between willing computers. In the case of online computer games this is where one computer acts as the host (master computer if you like) and all other players’ computers send their information to the master. This gives the player hosting the game a slight advantage in response time or lower ping and of course once that player leaves the game the server no longer exists as it was dependent on his connection, historically this has been referred to as a ‘listen server’.

Dedicated Servers. Some games companies like Activision and EA provide their own online “official” or “ranked” dedicated servers where they have their own machines in their own data centre hosting official servers that they control and admin. Console games generally also have their own dedicated servers provided by the developers or peer to peer solutions in some cases as with Modern Warfare 2 and 3. But some servers are provided by individuals who like to have personal control over how their game server is setup. These come in two options. Either the individual has a rented or owned machine and hosts the game server themselves. The second option is to rent a dedicated game server from a large list of GSP’s (game server providers) who for a small monthly charge can host your server for you 24 hours a day and have web based graphic user interfaces in order to start, stop, reinstall, edit configuration files, setup scheduled restarts, install mods and much more. This is in large part the most common choice as it is both cost effective and much easier to get started. Only basic knowledge is needed in order to host a server this way. That is why the GSP industry has grown to a 5 million dollar a year industry.

What are online servers?

A server is a machine running in a data centre (DC) with a high bandwidth connection to the internet and a redundant power supply to keep things online 24 hours a day, 365 days per year. This allows lots of players to connect to one place to all play together. GSP’s host their game servers on machines in a data centre.

What is ping?

Ping is just an ICMP command that checks the time it takes for a packet of information to travel from one computer to another and back again. Ping is measured in ms or milliseconds which are thousandths of a second. A game server that is hosted within 300 miles of your physical location should provide you with a good latency to your game server.

Full Dedicated Server

I have heard of dedicated servers. What are these?

You can rent a full dedicated server, this gives you root access to a Windows Server machine via Remote Desktop Connection. This is for advanced users as setting up a game server using steamcmd and configuring the firewall can be a time consuming process but for large communities and clans this is the only option. Full control over your game servers, root access to all of the files, something you will never get with shared game server hosting. It comes with a cost though, around the $100 per month mark so get those donations flowing to pay for the hardware.

Shared Game Server Hosting

Renting through a GSP (game server provider) is the most common and the best bang for your buck way to run a game server. You choose a provider from the many 100′s out there, choosing which provider to go with can be quite a daunting task. Here are the main points to consider.

· Price. Well price is king in most cases and a lot of gamers would have looked for the cheapest company in the top ten of Google and gone with them without even thinking about it. However choosing the lowest price is a haphazard way to choose any service, whether it be a plumber, an electrician or in this case a game server. You can choose the cheapest and take a punt, go for the most expensive and hope that translates into a quality service or if you’re like me go for the middle ground, not too cheap and not too expensive. I use this practice when choosing everything, from toasters to hotel rooms. But price isn’t the only factor to consider.

· Reputation. Reputation has an extremely strong influence in any decision on which service provider to use. There are game server companies that seem to of been around since the dawn of the internet age, and there are new unknown companies that have only formed in the past years. The older companies have seen it all before and maybe can get caught not putting the effort into the control panel functionality that a modern games and gamers demand. New vibrant young companies can be enthusiastic and energetic in their approach to both new game releases and support but they can also make mistakes and show a lack of experience in challenging support matters. The complicated nature of the newer indie games and steam early access games make it very difficult to get a smooth running game server so I would opt for the middle ground again, a company that’s not too long in the tooth but also old enough to have experience where it matters.

What else does a GSP offer then?

There are also some other factors to consider when selecting a GSP:

· Control Panel Interface. This is a Graphic User Interface (GUI) where you control your game server from. Here you can launch the game, change the rules, add server passwords, add bans, allows, add administrators and add mods. This should be fast and easy to use. The industry standard is TCAdmin 2, but many providers have custom created control panels to reduce costs as TCAdmin can be rather pricy for enterprise companies.

· Support staff experience. The support staff has experience to set up the game to make is easier to play as lots of games nowadays have complicated set up procedures. A good GSP will have a configuration editor already configured in the GSP control panel so that you do not need to go and research all the information to edit the file yourself. The key is the better the staff the less problems will go wrong with your server once you have it.

· Mod installers. Some GSPs have mod installers where you can, in one or two clicks, completely install a mod to a game with all the required files without the need to upload via FTP. Again this is a setup that your GSP would/should have made themselves.

· 24 Hour support. I play games into the wee hours of the morning and business hours support is no good to me. I want 24 hour support and I want someone to get back to me pretty quick so I can get on with my gaming. I don’t get a lot of free time and I don’t want it wasted on staring at a broken server, even if I did broke it myself.

· Instant Setup. Most GSP’s should have instant setup, in my experience this is not actually instant, instant start of the setup, not quite instant setup, the files need to download and some of these new games can be 20GB or more.

· Configuration editors. These are necessary for GSPs as many don’t want to give access to the root folders and modify the configurations and .ini files as the player slots are generally directly related to CPU consumption so the more player slots you require the more the server will cost. A good configuration editor will make the setting up of your game server easier. The complicated nature of some of the recent indie games like DayZ and Ark Survival evolved require attention to detail in order to get running smoothly. Make sure to check that the GSP is up to date with all custom configurations as updates for these types of games come quite often and can break an out of date configuration. So making sure the GSP staff are keeping up with games is a good indicator of a good GSP. Any good GSP should be able to answer detailed questions about their games and if they don’t what kind of support can you expect from them.

Play Online Flash Games For An Entire Day Of Gaming Fun

The internet has improved our lives in more ways than we can imagine. It has brought the world closer with its wide variety of communication media. It has revolutionized the way business is conducted. Not only this, by providing movies, music and games on demand, you can ensure you will never get bored.

There’s no shortage of PC games on the internet. But the problem with many is that you have to pay to play those games. If you are unwilling to do it, you can only play a limited version of maybe an hour.

Online flash games are quite popular today and are a great alternative to their paid counterparts. They are free to play as they earn through advertisements. They are rich in graphics, sound quality and game strategies. There are fun and captivating games for adults and children alike. There are real-time games as well. For instance, some farming or cooking games follow the 24 hour time cycle when it comes to raising a particular crop or preparing a dish.

Educative too!

Talking about playing online flash games, we only consider the entertain value. But did you know they could help develop cognitive skills too?

Online games are divided into different categories. There are action, adventure, arcade, shooting, puzzles, and strategy and multiplayer games, making it easier to pick the type of game that interests you. Thus, these online flash games demand that the player employs varied skills from alertness to decision making to co-ordination to developing strategies. Multiplayer and social games teach players how to socialize and work as a team. Multiplayer games are also a great way to stay in touch with friends living in distant locations.

Engaging and captivating online flash games can also help reduce stress levels after a hard and tiring day at work.

How to play online flash games?

There is more than one way to play online flash games. For most, you will need an Adobe Flash Player or a Java Scripts plug-in. If you don’t have these software programs installed on your computer, you might have to download them for a glitch-free gameplay.

If you don’t want to download any third-party software, there is no need to worry as you can play online flash games directly on your web browser. You simply have to look for an interesting game, wait for it to load and start playing. There are no installations needed here.

Taking it offline

You can also play online games by downloading them. Once downloaded, you can play the game without an internet connection and at your convenience.

It’s not hard to come across sites where you can play online flash games free of cost. Gaming portals might only differ in how they operate; while on a few you can start playing almost immediately, others might require you to register free of cost to start playing. Besides, new games are added regularly so you won’t get bored.