In game development, server authority is game logic that you manage and enforce on your server instead of on individual player devices:
- The server is the source of truth for important game data, such as player progress and high scores. This makes the server data authoritative.
- You store your game rules and validation logic, such as validation checks on player achievements, on the server.
- Player devices send data to the server when events happen in your game. The server processes the data it receives and updates values such as profiles and leaderboards.
- The server protects the integrity of your game data and rules. Clients can’t directly manipulate game elements such as scores or achievement unlocks.
Benefits of server authority
Server authority takes work to implement, but improves your game's integrity, security, and quality of life for players:
- Server authority secures game data on a backend server which makes it impossible to manipulate local data. This helps you ensure fair game play and prevent cheating in your games.
- Server authority makes it easier cross platform compatibility to your game without issues.
- Your players can switch devices and retain their game progress and profiles.
- You can update server authority code without the need for players to update their games.
- You can perform actions in response to server side state changes without any client involvement.