Question Great internet but unstable Wi-Fi while playing games on Android ?

Jan 23, 2021
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TL;DR Good Wi-Fi while browsing/streaming/downloading but unstable while playing games on Android.

I play two games on my Android device, Sky: Children of the Light and League of Legends: Wild Rift.

The way Sky works is that there cannot be more than 8 players together in the same instance, so to minimize load on the server it merges instances that can add up to 8:
Instance with 5 players + instance with 3 players = merge into single instance with 8 players.
And that means it can merge four instances by splitting the players:
Instance A = 4 players
Instance B = 6 players
Instance C = 5 players
Instance D = 1 players

Are all merged into:
Instance X = 8 players (4 from A + 4 from B)
Instance Y = 8 Players (remaining 2 from B + C + D)


BUT if you're playing with people on your friends list, it will not split you from them and will only merge if it can fit the whole group into another instance.
So my issue with this game is every ≈ 20 seconds I get split from my friends and put into a completely empty instance as if I disconnected, I pinged my phone my my laptop and found that whenever this happened I was having a major lag spike for 5-10 packets and then ping returns to normal again.

With Wild Rift, I pinged my phone for an entire game and I was having mostly good ms except for the odd single packet spike which doesn't really affect anything BUT during pre-match loading (after character pick) I sometimes don't get into the game even though the loading says 100% and I found that this only happens on my Wi-Fi but never on my 4G. And if I get stuck in that loading screen on Wi-Fi and switch to 4G it will reload to 100% and get into the game.

Things I have tried so far:
  • Resetting the router.
  • Reinstalling the games.
  • Switching DNS to cloudflare and google.
  • Forgetting Wi-Fi on my phone.
  • Resetting all network settings on my phone.
  • Tried playing the game on multiple android emulators on laptop but it is incompatible with any and all of them.
Router: ZTE ZXHN H168N
Phone: Samsung Galaxy S10 (Model: SM-G973F)
OS: Android 10

Thanks in advance!
 
Android unfortunately has almost no testing tools. Any good testing tools require root access which some phones is extremely hard to get.

What happens if you sit very close to the router. It could be wifi interference.

Almost every application except online games tolerate random latency spikes with few issues, online games have a lot of issues. This also tends to be why many phone based games are very simplistic control wise. You have no option to use a ethernet connection like you do in a gaming pc that is having issue with the wifi.

You have very few options. You can try to change the channel you are using but almost every channel has massive number of people using it if you live in pretty much any city. If you live in a apartment wifi can be almost unusable for even some non game applications.
 
Jan 23, 2021
4
0
10
0
Android unfortunately has almost no testing tools. Any good testing tools require root access which some phones is extremely hard to get.

What happens if you sit very close to the router. It could be wifi interference.

Almost every application except online games tolerate random latency spikes with few issues, online games have a lot of issues. This also tends to be why many phone based games are very simplistic control wise. You have no option to use a ethernet connection like you do in a gaming pc that is having issue with the wifi.

You have very few options. You can try to change the channel you are using but almost every channel has massive number of people using it if you live in pretty much any city. If you live in a apartment wifi can be almost unusable for even some non game applications.
I am sitting right next to the router, it is on the same desk as the phone.

One thing I forgot to mention was that I was already playing Sky just fine on a different Wi-Fi connection (same package, same ISP) in the same city, no lag or merge issues whatsoever.

So, would we be able to solve the issue if I rooted the phone?
 
Mostly you would root the phone so you maybe could see why the wifi is disconnecting. It really depends on if it actually is disconnecting the wifi itself or if just losing a lot of data packets.

It really doesn't matter.

You have almost no options. You can check to see if there are newer drivers for the phone. Unlike a pc I don't think you have many options to do stuff like load older drivers, I am not even sure you can just update a driver without upgrading the OS itself.

On the router you have the standard change the radio channels, maybe change the radio band you are using. You could force the channel width to 20mhz. This will lower the speed but with lower channel width it reduces you chance for interference. It also gives you more channels to try since on 5g there 9 20mhz channels but if you are using 80mhz width it uses blocks of 4 channels so you have much fewer choices.
 

Math Geek

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i have had some games do that me as well. it was usually not my connection but rather the game itself that did not like my wifi for some reason.

i can recall more than one i had to use cell data for to keep it stable. worked fine on a slow cell data connection but would never work right on strong solid wifi.
 
Jan 23, 2021
4
0
10
0
Mostly you would root the phone so you maybe could see why the wifi is disconnecting. It really depends on if it actually is disconnecting the wifi itself or if just losing a lot of data packets.

It really doesn't matter.

You have almost no options. You can check to see if there are newer drivers for the phone. Unlike a pc I don't think you have many options to do stuff like load older drivers, I am not even sure you can just update a driver without upgrading the OS itself.

On the router you have the standard change the radio channels, maybe change the radio band you are using. You could force the channel width to 20mhz. This will lower the speed but with lower channel width it reduces you chance for interference. It also gives you more channels to try since on 5g there 9 20mhz channels but if you are using 80mhz width it uses blocks of 4 channels so you have much fewer choices.
I was actually on a 20mhz already so I'm not sure where that leaves me...
I'm thinking of trying to get access to another phone and playing the game on it so I can be 100% the Wi-Fi issue is from the router and not the phone.
Do you think a router factory reset would do me any good?
 
Jan 23, 2021
4
0
10
0
i have had some games do that me as well. it was usually not my connection but rather the game itself that did not like my wifi for some reason.

i can recall more than one i had to use cell data for to keep it stable. worked fine on a slow cell data connection but would never work right on strong solid wifi.
The thing is I used to play the same game on a different Wi-Fi connection (same package, same ISP) and it worked just fine, so I'm not really sure what to make of it.
 

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