2XKO will have “server-based rollback netcode”, but how will that impact the game and its players?

Late last week, senior director of 2XKO Tom Cannon announced something intriguing on X (formerly Twitter). He announced that 2XKO will have server-based Rollback netcode, that you could throw out your fears of protecting yourself against Wi-Fi warriors and their sub-standard connections and rest easy. But this short but sweet statement begs the question: what does server-based rollback netcode actually mean?

Because while rollback netcode is a known quantity at this point in fighting games as a bit of technical wizardry that synchronizes game states through predictions while rolling back any miscalculations, the addition of servers to the mix may be a curveball to the uninitiated. What does this mean for the player? Could using servers at a latency factor that is otherwise absent in peer-to-peer fighting games?

While we can’t be sure of the exact recipe for what Riot Games is cooking here, we can dig into server-based rollback netcode in a more general sense. To help with that, I spoke to Adam “Keits” Heart. FGC illumni and part of the Iron Galaxy team, Heart has worked as a designer on Killer Instinct, Divekick, and more recently Rumbleverse. He also was an interviewee in Infil.net’s excellent rollback article, which we recommend you read later if you want a comprehensive breakdown on how it works.

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