Optical fiber internet and online gaming


In terms of playing fighting games online, especially AE, would I be able to play players from different continents if my internet was as fast as it says it could be (up to 200mbps)?

It’s quite expensive so I want to be sure before trying it.
I heard online gaming has to do with upload speed, so does anyone know what kind of upload speed would be required to play internationally with minimal lag?


** It won’t make a difference if the other guy’s connection is chugging along at a slower speed. ** You’d be paying extra for no gain unless you do research and it tells you what the standards are on the other guy’s end.

You have to remember not everybody has the same Internet capability. There are differences in servers, modem speeds, cable bandwidth available, etc. (Heck, look at all the people now running computers over 5 years old and STILL using Windows XP!) (I do, too! :slight_smile: ) Cable-based transmission still beats wireless, too. It’s more reliable, keeps a more consistent datarate, and doesn’t suffer transmission loss because of comm waves having to travel through solid objects (walls, mountains, any solid objects between a transmitter and receiver) or potential electronic jamming.

The US is actually at the LOWER END speedwise/bandwidth-wise for developed countries that have Internet broadband, cable-based or not. That’s largely because private telecomm companies lay down the infrastructure and are very territorial about their infrastructure/data cables/wiring. No company is going to give another company free access to their cable lines/computer servers/etc. without licensing agreements/paying money upfront; that and every company tries to own as much of an operation as they can so they don’t have to rely/pay another company.

In other countries like Japan and South Korea, the government has more say in how their data lines are laid down so you don’t have the bickering and fighting over basic hardware like we do in the US. They set harsher, more uniform standards than the US traditionally does and their data transmission rates are generally higher. They’re also much smaller countries population-wise and probably have an easier time upgrading their comm systems, too. Lots of countries don’t have broadband Internet (yet) and other countries are dependent on wireless because it’s a huge headache and very expensive to set up a cable-based infrastructure like the US has. A few cellphone towers with large transmission coverage is much cheaper.

The problem with wireless, though, is that transmission can get cut off depending on weather or geography (mountains). Also, unless you have a million wireless towers available having one tower out of commission can affect many, many people. Most countries dependent on wireless coverage probably don’t have a ton of transmission towers. With the way the US is covered with both wireless and cable-based communication, we tend to have back-ups that come into play when a tower or cable station gets (temporarily) knocked out of commission.

P.S. – Sorry for the long bloviating post. I know I talk like The Beast sometimes…


Unless you only play against people with realllllllly good connections it won’t make a difference. It’s a two way street, both players need good connections and proper ports forwarded. Recently started playing AE online again and its ridiculous how sensitive it is when it comes to bandwidth.

Edit* George beat me to the punch lmao.
It’s ok, mine is the TLDR version :tup:


Once you’ve moved passed a dialup connection and into some kind of broadband ie. some form of cable or DSL, gaming has little to do with bandwidth (down or up) and more to do with (how low) your latency is / your routing / how stable your connection is. You’d need to check your ping time between where you are and the person you’re playing against overseas through your cmd line using ping / tracert or some site like pingtest.net to test latency and quality of service. Some ISP’s get congested during peak times too, so that’s a factor as well as if someone is downloading porn at the same time / on the same line as you lol.

(Even with good latency on your end the route from you in say New York playing a player in Tokyo can be different and have different latency from another player in New York playing the same player in Tokyo)

With your fiber, is it FTTH / FTTB (fiber to the house / building) or FTTC (fiber to the curb)? If it’s FTTC you’ll sometimes find there’s no difference between it and DSL so paying extra for it isn’t worth it.

An upgrade to fiber might help your online gaming if you had a mediocre cable or DSL line previously but it’s also not going to magically make a SF online fight between West coast US and East coast Japan buttery smooth either.


Hi all … just to share my story for your reference …
I’m from Hong Kong and in this tiny city fiber-to-home internet is very common and the monthly charge is very low. I’ve been using a 200mbit-per-sec connection for almost 2 years. For game and movie download it’s definitely the way to go. The max I’ve hit so far is around 20 MEGA BYTE per sec according to utorrent. Of course it all depends on the location of the sending end. If I’m getting stuff from people in Hong Kong locally, China, Singapore, Korea, or Japan, the speed would be quite good.
But for games like AE, that’d be another story.
From Hong Kong, I get some good green connections to Japan players. They keep playing with me so I believe they are fine with my connection to them too.
Some of them are shown as yellow during my search, but when I get into their rooms they become green. Most of the time they are okay with me, but sometimes they reject me after the first game.
Some of them are always red or orange. Never playable.
And … I can never play with Europe and NA and SA players. All red.
And you guys are right. It depends on the other end’s connection as well for sure.
For this type of gaming, one thing rules it all:
Upload and download could be fast as the bandwidth is high (“wide”) and more data can be sent and received in a sec.
But when 2 distant guys are trading punches, blocks, and fireballs online, frames are exchanged and displayed between both ends and we are talking about 60 “steps” in any sec.
The distance from Hong Kong to US is just too long though fiber is supposed to be zero resistant it takes notable time to travel back and forth (latency).


Exand is 100% correct. Latency causes issues in online gaming. Bandwidth != latency. If you’re moving to fiber and your bandwidth speed is amazing you can still have a bad experience gaming online. I

If other people are crowding your pipe and you have access to your router, you can look up how to set up QOS. This allows you to set up rules for the services people use and give your xbox packets priority.


Thanks for all the replies guys. That’s a lot of info to take in. I’m looking to get FTTH and may experiment with it for a month only - since it’s so pricey. I’ve not heard of FTTC until now.

It’s a shame there’s so much disparity between countries and the predominant internet speeds they have. It’s 2013 now and I wonder when online latency will be a thing of the past.


Internet is usually crap in U.S due to greed. They charge people more and more ( data cap in the future) without upgrading their infrastructures. In Canada, The internet is better but prohibitively too expensive.
As far as online gaming, upload speed is more important overall. I wish you could trade most of your download speed for upload speed. Download speed is just a marketing gimmick above 5MB/s


In Canada, I agree that what we pay for internet is expensive, yet on the east coast have world class service. FibreOP (as Bell Aliant coined it here) has been hit or miss, but is also relatively new to the area. With cable, I remember playing CounterStrike and Call of Duty on Europeon Servers or others based in Dallas and still being able to hold my own. Go beyond that, and you were dog meat.


I will tell you about my own experience, because I live in Japan and I am using fiber internet (around 100 mbps down and 75 mbps up).

First of all, you need to understand that playing online is a two-way street, so having great internet means nothing if your opponent has crappy internet. So both you and your opponent need good (or at least decent) internet access.

However, that is only half the story. Aside from internet quality, there is the factor of distance between you and your opponent as well as the quality of the netcode for the game you are playing. Even the type of game you are playing makes a difference. For example, you can look at this interview:

Even with top-notch Korean internet, MadKOF and his friends still cannot get a good experience playing KOF XIII online. As for me, even with my fiber internet I greatly struggle with the awful netcode in Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3. I used to blame the bad internet of the Philippines for my UMVC3 online experience but now I know it’s just god-awful netcode. For a game like KOF13 or UMVC3 not even the best internet in the world can help you.

At the other end of the spectrum are games with great netcode like Skullgirls, Marvel vs Capcom 2 and Tekken Tag Tournament 2. For TTT2 I was told by Mike Z (lead Skullgirls developer) that its secret lies in the slower pace of its gameplay. Tekken and other 3d fighters just aren’t as twitchy compared to 2d fighters, so it’s easier for developers to hide the online lag. I can vouch that playing TTT2 against international opponents is no problem for me.

In the case of SG and MVC2 they use good netcode so even with bad internet you can get a good experience playing online. Here is a video of me playing against a friend in the Philippines. It’s about a 3000 km distance and his internet is not very good but we made it work:

Finally we have the middle-ground games, who have OK but not great netcode. The best example here is Super Street Fighter 4. I found it ridiculously laggy when I tried playing it online from the Philippines, but here in Japan I am fine online as long as my opponent also has good internet. Check out this interview with Gamerbee:

He lays out that he could get good training against Japanese players using SSF4 online. That is possible because both him and his opponent have good internet.

So I hope I helped you out my friend. Here is the TLDR:

  • If you are playing Skullgirls or Darkstalkers Resurrection or Marvel vs Capcom 2 fiber internet will get you good international games even against some people with only “decent” internet.

  • If you are playing SSF4 or similar then fiber will let you have good games with opponents that also have great internet.

  • If you are playing UMVC3 or KOF13 then the fastest internet in the world will not help you.


If you can afford fiber, get it anyway so at least, you’re not the cause of lag when people connect to you.