SLU Gaming Lab

SLU Gaming Lab

In January 2014, Tafadzwa Pasipanodya (’14) and I set up the SLU Gaming Lab to facilitate research in gaming. The lab consists of 12 machines (Intel i7 920 @ 2.66 GHz, 12 GB of RAM, Radeon RX 460 OC with 4 GB, 525 GB SSD) running League of Legends, Heroes of the Storm, Hearthstone, and Overwatch on Windows 10. It will also serve as a venue for students to practice and compete as a team in collegiate leagues such as Heroes of the Dorm, IvyLoL, and CSL.

The SLU Gaming Lab is located in Bewkes Science Hall 143. The room houses many of our department servers, networking equipment and a space where senior computer science majors do their Senior Year Experience (SYE) projects.

Figure 1 depicts the SLU Gaming Lab network setup and topology. All the machines in the network are connected over 1 Gbps Ethernet connections. The 12 gaming machines are connected to a 1 Gbps switch, which is connected to a Linux server that acts as a router. This Linux server can shape the traffic (inject delays, jitter and losses) as well as capture traffic in and out of the gaming clients.

SLU Gaming Lab Network Setup
Figure 1: SLU Gaming Lab Network Setup

You can see the gaming machines and the 1 Gbps switch in Figure 2. They are running screen savers that cycle through StarCraft II wallpapers when idle.

SLU Gaming Lab
Figure 2: SLU Gaming Lab

Figure 3 shows the display into the SLU Gaming Lab. The left monitor continuously plays cinematic videos of StarCraft II, League of Legends, and Heroes of the Storm. The center two monitor run Microsoft Kinect demo apps that detect the basic skeleton model of the people standing in front of the displays. In the figure, you can see the green lines depicting the skeleton model of me taking the picture. The current plan for the center displays is to implement an application that can interact with people via gestures to provide information about the department and the lab.

Figure 3: SLU Gaming Lab Display Window
Figure 3: SLU Gaming Lab Display Window