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Chicken Invaders:

Ultimate Omelette
Multiplayer Help

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Help General Instructions

Multiplayer games allow you to play co-operatively with other players around the world. In these cases, one player is "hosting" the game (server), while other players "join" (clients). The game will decide on the best host, so you don't need to worry about that (however, in some cases you might want to force a partcicular computer to act as a host, read below for how to achieve this).

Multiplayer games are have special characteristics. If your computer is the host, the game is pretty much the same as a solo mission. If you're the client, however, you should keep in mind that the quality of your game depends on the quality of your network connection to the host.

The game is really being played on the host, not your computer. Anything you do on your computer must be transferred to the host. This takes time. Roughly speaking, the further away the server is geographically, the longer it will take for your commands to reach it. This creates a delay (or lag) before anything you do takes effect. This lag is known as your ping and is measured in thousandths of a second (milliseconds, or ms).

When you play a network game, your ping is cycled in the network area (top-right of your screen, as you're playing). Pings up to 100 ms are fine, you probably won't even notice the slight delay. If your ping is 100-250 ms, the delay will be noticeable, but you'll quickly get used to it and you'll easily be able to play. Pings above 250 ms will negatively affect your game experience, as you won't be able to react in time.

In high-ping situations, you should focus on the position of the green reticle (which responds instantly to your mouse movements), and not the spaceship itself. The green reticle always shows the final position of the spaceship, even though it might take a while before it actually gets there.

In network games, you might also notice some artifacts as you're playing, like passing through enemies, getting killed by something you didn't touch etc. The worse/slower your network connection is to the server, the more of these glitches you'll experience. Although annoying, these are normal for a network game and there's nothing that can you can do to fix them.


Help In-house multiplayer

Only use this option to play with computers in your Local Area Network (LAN). All the participating computers need to be on the same subnet. The first computer to select this option will host the game, so if there's a large difference in the hardware specification of your computers, it's recommended that you start your fastest computer first.

You don't actually need an internet connection to complete the Network Wizard, so you can play the game on a LAN where computers aren't connected to the internet. In this case, when the Network Wizard attempts to connect to the internet, wait until it fails (be patient, sometimes it takes a while). Then, simply click on "next" and step through the rest of the wizard.

Depending on your firewall configuration, it's possible that even LAN games are blocked. If you find that your computers can't connect to each other, temporarily disable ALL your firewalls and try again. If the game then works (meaning that your firewalls were indeed to blame for the problem), you can turn your firewalls back on and create a rule for the game to be allowed through the firewall (each firewall does this differently, so consult your firewall's manual for further instructions).

If you are trying to play multiplayer games between computers that are connected wirelessly, be aware that some WiFi routers have a feature called "wireless isolation". It means that multiple computers connected wirelessly to the router won't be able to "see" or communicate one one another. Make sure this option is NOT enabled in your router configuration.


Help Internet multiplayer

The main option available here is "range". This controls how far away (from your current geographic location) other players can be located. The recommended setting (and, starting with v3.30, the default) is long. However, using this setting you may find that your connection isn't as fast as you'd like (that is, your ping is too high), reduce this setting to medium or low.

Do NOT use internet multiplayer to play LAN games, because the computers in your LAN won't be able to connect to each other (depending on your network configuration this might actually work, but it normally doesn't).

If you have multiple computers in your LAN that you want to simultaneously play with other computers on the internet (for example, a three-player game where two computers are in your LAN and one is outside), then you must make sure that the network game on the outside computer is completely started before joining it from your LAN computers.

Advaned option: "Ignore ongoing games". When selected, the matchmaking step will be skipped and you will directly start your own game instead. Since this means you'll be playing alone until someone joins your game, you should normally NOT use this option. It's only recommended in cases where you are repeatedly automatically matched with an unsatisfactory game.

Advaned option: "Server port". Normally, when you are hosting a multiplayer game (that is, when your computer is the server), the UDP port used by the server is random. Using this option you can force a particular UDP port to be used (the option has no effect if you are a client). This is useful in cases where you have access to your firewall/router and can open a specific UDP port, which will allow you to play with other players that would otherwise not be able to connect to you. Make sure the port you specify is not already used by another application, or your game will come to a complete and very sudden stop (something in the range 10000-50000 is normally fine).


Help Friends multiplayer

This is essentially the same as an Internet multiplayer game, except that you can choose which people you want to invite. All of your friends (and yourself) should decide on a keyword and then enter that keyword in the relevant box before you start the game. It is not necessary to make the keyword as cryptographically strong as a password. Still, don't keep it too generic, otherwise you might find yourself joining other people's games! The keyword is case-sensitive (that is, "joesgame" is not the same as "JoesGame"), so make sure all players enter it in exactly the same way.


Help Firewalls, Routers, and other connection problems

LAN games:

You may have problems playing LAN games if one or more of your computers are connected wirelessly (WLAN) to your router. Some routers have an option called "wireless device isolation". If that is enabled, each device connected wirelessly to the router can't see or communicate with other local devices (it can only go out to the internet). Look through your router documentation for a way to change this setting (it might be called something slightly different). Alternatively, connect to your router directly by using a cable (wired connection).

Internet games:

Chicken Invaders includes technology that under normal circumstances allows two computers to communicate even if they're behind firewalls. Depending on the type of your firewall/router and its configuration, however, this can sometimes fail.

When playing multiplayer games, sometimes you may find that you can't connect to games hosted by other people. The master server will report that you're being connected to a game, the world map will appear, but the timer will run out before you can join the game. This is a sign that a router/firewall is blocking communication between the two computers.

It could either be your router/firewall that's causing the problem, the other person's, or even both. Even worse, it could even be a third router somewhere in the path connecting the two computers that lies completely outside your control (this might not be very common, but it's certainly possible).

Troubleshooting these types of problems is very complex, and a solution doesn't always exist. But there are some things you can try (try them in the order listed):

  1. If you're playing with a friend, enter the game first and ask your friend to join. Then, try it the other way, so that your friend enters the game first and you join later. It's possible that one method works but the other one doesn't, so make sure you try both!
  2. Disable your firewall and configure your router to forward all UDP traffic to your PC. The method to do this depends on the make/model of your router, so check its manual for instructions. Do this on both computers if possible. After making this change, try step 1 again. Remember to change any settings back to their original values after the game!
  3. If you're interesting in finding out more about why your firewall/router is blocking communications, download the WinSTUN client . The WinSTUN client is a small diagnostic tool that can determine your type of router. When you install it, a "WinSTUN" entry will appear in your Start menu. Launch it and click on the "Run Test" button.
    • If it says that STUN server couldn't be found, put another server in the "Stun server" field (try stun01.sipphone.com or do a web search for "public STUN servers").
    • If it says "VoIP will NOT work" or that you have a "Port Dependent Filter", then there's pretty much nothing you can do except to host your own game and hope that the people connecting to you will have more forgiving firewalls.
    • If it says you have a "Port Independent Filter" or don't have a NAT at all, then the problem isn't at your end. The other person's firewall/router is to blame.
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