How to make client-client connection in js without node.js?

Issue

I am trying to make simple game of Tic-Tac-Toe in JS.

I made almost everything. Now there is just one thing to do.

I would like to make it available to play online with someone.

I want to send data between two games via Internet.

Unfortunately my server does not support Node.JS.

Is there a way to make it happen without any server-side “socket”.

I thought I could make it with XMLHttpRequest() for saving/loading data into/from server files and play like that, but I think it would require a lot of code and maybe for ttt it would be fast enough, but for more complicated games it would not be sufficient.

I know this is tough, but how did they do that before node.js?

Solution

For a game like Tic-Tac-Toe where players take turns, latency definitely takes second seat to every other factor in communications. For this reason alone, communicating with just the HTTP protocol, typically by utilizing the XMLHttpRequest class or the Fetch API, is a very reasonable approach which will save you a lot of programming effort.

Otherwise, when wanting one or several low-latency and/or RTC channels (for hopefully a good reason), both WebRTC and WebSocket are viable candidates.

WebRTC, for one, can absolutely do peer-to-peer, while WebSocket uses the client-server model. But even WebRTC requires a "signalling" service to exchange peer identifiers initially, before eventually switching to communicating between the peers directly. While peer identifiers are required to set up WebRTC communication, the API deliberately does not cover how peer identifiers are exchanged — however you want to design your signalling service, is up to you. For all WebRTC cares, you can "POST" a peer ID to a HTTP server and retrieve it with the other peer’s Web browser and vice-versa. WebRTC starts with already known peer IDs.

Otherwise, if configured to do so, WebRTC is able to utilize STUN and/or TURN services to maintain peer-to-peer connection, on networks that otherwise prohibit straightforward IP routing between any two clients — a necessary prerequisite of true peer-to-peer communication.

STUN/TURN services aren’t required in all cases, but knowing average network conditions, without using either STUN or TURN or both, your application wouldn’t be very reliable for any two clients separated by multiple arbitrary networks. Like in scenarios where both parties are separated by at least one firewall or a stubborn router that functions as one.

A TURN service would then transparently route WebRTC communication, working as a relay.

A STUN service punches holes in the firewalls between clients in such a way that peer-to-peer communication is possible afterwards. Meaning that in contrast with a TURN service, it does not play any active part in communication after latter is established.

WebRTC is a bit complex, especially if you are expecting an API along the lines of send and receive, but a simplified connection example should be understandable to a developer.

You may also not need to use WebRTC API directly, there are libraries that encapsulate WebRTC into a simpler API of one flavour or another, API that simultaneously hides the more fringe or "boilerplate" aspects of WebRTC and which also helps minimize the risk of getting into trouble as different user agents are notorious for implementing different parts of WebRTC a bit differently.

One of these libraries is PeerJS but there are others, without a doubt.

The WebSocket API, unlike WebRTC, requires a WebSocket compliant server, and WebSocket API does not do peer-to-peer. The good news is that 1) a WebSocket compliant service is typically just an advanced relay (often fused with an application back-end logic), albeit working on the application level instead of the session level for TURN and 2) there are plenty of "turn-key" WebSocket server implementations out there.

Answered By – amn

Answer Checked By – Pedro (AngularFixing Volunteer)

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