“Anti-DDoS Game is allowing us to differentiate ourselves in a highly competitive market.”
Video games are the second largest cultural industry in the world. Today, half of the American population plays video games. Among players, 62% play on PC, and spend an estimated 6.5 hours per week playing online *. Every evening, all over the world, millions of players connect to servers to compete or collaborate with teammates without realizing the challenges that server providers have to overcome in order to offer them quality service despite a strong surge in cyber attacks. VeryGames, one of the European leaders in the gaming sector, gives us a behind-the scenes look.
Founded by Johann Thiesson in 2004, VeryGames specializes in online gaming hosting services (gaming and voice servers, and managed services). The company’s longevity in a sector where players come and go, combined with high quality service, have made VeryGames the European reference for both amateur and professional gamers.
A few years ago, VeryGames would investigate attacks they fell victim to, with the goal of finding the guilty parties and prosecuting them. Today the philosophy is not quite the same. “DDoS attacks are a phenomenon that's impossible to contain and they are now very common in the world of gaming” explains Johann Thiesson. “The volume of attacks is such that I could spend every day at the police station but I have better things to do!”
VeryGames has been operating its own datacenter for several years and has recently made the choice to migrate its machines to OVH.com, notably to offer its users effective protection against DDoS attacks. “Having our own datacenter generates fixed costs that we would like to reduce. But most of all, we were unable to offer our customers an anti-DDoS protection as powerful as what OVH.com provides.” OVH.com developed a very sophisticated protection to mitigate complex attacks as they are compliant with the layer seven protocol and exploit the vulnerabilities inherent to the transmission of packets in non-connected mode (UDP). In addition, the scale of the OVH global network can withstand some very intense attacks, which no other provider could absorb without cutting off the affected machines or paying significant fees for data transit.
For this entrepreneur, who has a hundred machines at OVH.com and sees the server farm growing at a rate of several additional servers each week, DDoS attacks were a real plague with the potential to degrade the image of his company and have a significant financial impact. “Before migrating our servers to OVH.com, an attack meant slowdowns or even an interruption of service for our users, which in return multiplied the number of tickets and the number of requests from those rightly seeking compensation in the most extreme cases. And we were suffering several attacks each day for anywhere between two minutes and three hours!”
Obviously, this protection comes at a price. The “standard” anti-DDoS (VAC) protection, included with all services from OVH.com is already very efficient. For games relatively unaffected by attacks, such as Farming Simulator which mainly played by adults, an OVH.com server with VAC protection will do. However, for a particularly vulnerableTeamspeak voice server, it is worth investing in a Game Server, which enjoys the specific anti-DDoS Game protection. The same goes for Minecraft servers which offer processors of up to 4 Ghz that also contribute to a high quality player experience.
“At VeryGames, we have designed a good admin panel, provide responsive support and offer competitive pricing. OVH.com’s anti-DDoS Game allows us to offer the highest quality of service and differentiate ourselves from others in a highly competitive market. This is why we really look forward to OVH.com continuing to develop and perfect its anti-DDoS Game service, making additional game profiles available, adapting new techniques to counter attacks… and building new datacenters throughout the world to support VeryGames' development internationally.”
*Source: "Essential Facts about the Computer and Video Game Industry", 2015, Entertainment Software Association (ESA).