Introducing Xbox One’s Secret Sauce For Combating Cloud Gaming Latency: DeLorean

Microsoft’s research team indicates that DeLorean, a system that covers up latency that makes cloud gaming a seamless experience.

Posted By | On 22nd, Aug. 2014 Under News | Follow This Author @GamingBoltTweet

xbox one cloud

Although Microsoft have been pushing the power of the cloud ever since the Xbox One’s announcement, we have yet to see anything that will help the console push barriers. Granted that Microsoft have showcased a single tech demonstration that gives us a good taste of the cloud’s potential but then again players need to see something in action to have faith in this technology.

Even if Microsoft is able to implement cloud powered games on the Xbox One, they still have to beat the biggest beast of them all, latency. Simply put, majority of the locations across the world, including some places in the USA, do not have latency free connections. Ever a round trip latency of 100 milliseconds will create issues for seamless cloud gameplay. In short, if you are cloud gaming developer, latency is your nightmare and this is perhaps one of the reasons why we may actually never see cloud powered games on the Xbox One in the future. However Microsoft is working to resolving this issue.

In a research paper published by Microsoft, the development team is working on DeLoreanDeLorean is an execution system that is able to cover up or mask latency up to 250 milliseconds. The system’s algorithm is based on predicting future inputs, state space subsampling and time shifting, and misprediction compensation. It also includes algorithms for bandwidth compression which is crucial as it will reduce download times and improve response times.

DeLorean does not work on buffering the games but instead depends on mitigating latency via speculative execution. The system considers the user’s historical actions and based on accumulative data, the system decides a list of actions that are highly predictable. But what about actions that cannot be predicted? For that purpose, state space subsampling and time shifting is used to predict a long list of user actions. State space subsampling also helps in narrowing the important data only, saving bandwidth in the process.

Now there might be a possibility that the predictions were not correct and in this case the system will correct that frame using interpolation. This process is called misprediction compensation and it employs a checkpoint system to recover the data in case of an error. And lastly, the system uses a custom video encoding scheme that will save bandwidth.

The developers have already tested out DeLorean games like DOOM 3 and Fable 3, and according to the research paper the results have been satisfying. We encourage you through the research paper as it has additional information regarding the underlying architecture of DeLorean.

Sources: DeLorean Research Paper, Microsoft.

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  • Stephane Vaille

    Sure it is interesting … but what a shame to start the next gen like this. I mean, Kinect and Cloud are two potential game changers for the gaming industry but they should launch with few games to demonstrate those technologies.
    One year post launch we have just few tech demo and concepts … It’s time to create new IP relying on cloud and / or Kinect.

    • bardock5151

      Crackdown, that is all.

    • Mark

      And check out what some ALLEGED developer’s saying about his cloud game on Xbox, supposed to be announced next year. U may have seen it, but it is cool insight about his design with the game. Again, allegedly. Courtesy of NeoGaf. His name’s Kampfheld.

    • bardock5151

      Oh yeah I’ve seen that posted somewhere before, if real could be the first showing of complex dynamic worlds. Next year will be interesting with crackdown hopefully showing and maybe this one too.

    • Lord Darque

      What they should have done is left both out of the Xbox completely. When the tech is ready then introduce it.

      They cannot create any IPs that rely on the Cloud because it simply will not work for a large number of people. The tech does not exist in a workable form.

  • Lord Darque

    This is just typical M$. Telling us all how wonderful something is when it does not yet work. The DeLorean scheme may work for some games but there will be plenty where it just won’t. Simple run and gun games maybe anything more complex no.

    If you bought an Xbox you are paying for M$ to develop something that might never work. Just like the Kinect. It was *not* ready for prime time either but they figured if they shoved enough of them down people’s throats they would have the $$ to make it work. Then they dropped it.

    I expect the same with the Cloud. Eventually they will admit it is not ready and will stop talking about it.

    • bardock5151

      They are developing a confirmed game right now that will use the cloud quite heavily. That tech demo was as officially confirmed early crackdown work.
      Having bought an Xbox doesn’t mean I’m helping to fund a possible pipe dream, it means I get to play most of the games available now and then get to be involved in innovative games in the future. That sounds like a good deal to me.
      The kinect works. Deadrisings inclusion of the kinect was innovative, ryse made good use of it, it helps to immerse you in the game by telling archers to fire. Games like sports rivals are brilliant fun for BBQ’s, kids love playing the game and for me and my family especially after a few drinks the game can be really funny.

    • Lord Darque

      Developing does not assure success. I am very much in ‘I will believe it when I see it.’ Latency is not simply going to disappear. Nobody is going to want a game they can only play some of the time and that is exactly what is going to happen.

      If they can make it work fine but to date they have shown nothing that looks like it will handle the clear problems with the Cloud.

      And if the Kinect does things you like great but the net is rather overflowing with the complaints about it. The most common one is that it is just not good enough yet. Eventually it will be I am sure.

    • bardock5151

      Oh I’m sorry I didn’t realise nobody wants to play destiny or titanfall. This kind of technology is exactly the kind of thing that’ll help with latency, prediction of your actions wouldn’t be limited only to full gameplay but applicable across all forms of its potential use’s in physics and AI. Killzone’s multiplayer uses predictive technology for temporal reprojection and by most accounts doesn’t have much in the way of glitches in picture quality, just as an example of predictive software working its not the same but similar enough. If for some reason the connection stutters or fails they’ll drop back to local and anyone who buys the game will be aware of potential interruptions just like mmo’s and online multiplayer at least if its a single player experience you could continue to play albeit at a diminished version of the game but play nonetheless. Believe it when you see it doesn’t apply as a bandwidth heavy service like it exists in beta right now, its called psnow, people in the beta report loss in visual quality but not experience breaking lag.
      If any one is complaining about kinect not working on fighter within pay it no heed, its quite a poorly made game unfortunately. Sports rivals works very well, voice commands and gestures work very well for others I know and my self with what I’d call a 98% hit rate, alot better than initial release but even initial release was far and above kinect 1.0. So I tend not to listen to the internet on that matter as it could be flat out bias, nor do I expect others to take me at my word.


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