Regions

Photon Cloud provides you with global connectivity to allow low latency gaming all around the world.

The initial connection of clients goes to a Photon Name Server, which provides the list of available regions.

Each region is completely separate from the others and consists of a Master Server (for matchmaking) and Game Servers (hosting rooms).

Photon Cloud Regions' Connect Flows
Connect to Photon Cloud regions

The full list of available regions is below. In the Dashboard, you can define which regions should be available for the clients.

Contents

Best Region Selection

PUN and Photon Voice rely on the Realtime API layer to pick the Best Region.

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C# Realtime API

Photon Realtime can detect the Best Region to connect to and enables you to stick to that region.

To do so, the clients always fetch the list of available regions from the Name Server on connect. This is used to get an up-to-date regions list and check if the saved Best Region -if any- is still available.

After pinging the servers, the results are summarized in a string which should be saved on the device for later use. The summary string includes the current best region, its ping and the current regions list.

Without results from a previous session, all regions will be pinged, which takes a moment longer. If a previous result is available, the client will check:

a. if the region list changed (covers the case if the "previous best region" is still available)
b. if the ping is no longer acceptable (>= 1.5x slower than previously saved reference value)

If either applies, all regions are pinged and a new result gets picked.

Using Best Region works well with the server-side Region Filter in the Dashboard. It enables you to change the list of regions available to players on demand.

To access the list of regions or to override previous results, refer to the API Reference for regions.

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Best Region Considerations

"Best Region" option is not deterministic. Sometimes it may be "random" due to little variations or exact same ping calculations.

Theoretically, you could:

  • have the same exact ping to multiple regions from the same device. So its random, if you end up with different regions on clients connected to the same network.
  • different ping values for the same region on different devices (or different retries on the same device) connected to the same network.

For instance, in the case of "us" and "usw" (or "ru" and "rue"), you could either make use of the online regions whitelist to select the ones you want and drop the others or connect to an explicit region.

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Available Regions

Photon Cloud has servers in several regions, distributed across multiple hosting centers over the world.

Each Photon Cloud region is identified by a "region token".

List of available regions and tokens:

The strings for region tokens(or codes) are case insensitive. Example: "EU" or "eu" are both accepted and refer to the same Europe region.
RegionHosted inToken
AsiaSingaporeasia
AustraliaMelbourneau
Canada, EastMontrealcae
Chinese Mainland1 (See Instructions)Shanghaicn
EuropeAmsterdameu
IndiaChennaiin
JapanTokyojp
RussiaMoscowru
Russia, EastKhabarovskrue
South AfricaJohannesburgza
South AmericaSao Paulosa
South KoreaSeoulkr
USA, EastWashington D.C.us
USA, WestSan Joséusw

1: Chinese Mainland region needs separate AppId and subscription.

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Dashboard Regions Filtering

You can filter the list of available Photon Cloud regions per application on the fly directly from the dashboard.

Photon Cloud: Regions Whitelist
Filter Photon Cloud Regions

Go to the dashboard and then click "Manage" for a chosen application and then click "Edit". You will find an input field where you can enter the list of whitelisted regions as follows:

  • the allowed list should be a string of region tokens separated by semicolons. e.g. "eu;us".
  • region tokens are case insensitive and are defined here.
  • undefined or unrecognized region tokens will be ignored from the list.
  • empty ("") or malformed string (e.g. ";;;") means empty list.
  • empty list means all available regions are allowed.

Once you confirm and save, the operation GetRegions will return only the filtered list of regions. Thus, clients should select from that list but it's fully possible clients connect to any available region explicitly. Take into consideration that dashboard updates propagation can take up to 10 minutes.

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Using The Chinese Mainland Region

You need to request access to the Chinese Mainland region for your Photon application. Send us an email so we could unlock it for your AppID.
You cannot subscribe to paid plans to be used in the Chinese Mainland region via our website. Reach out to us by email to receive a quote for any subscription.

The Photon Name Server has to be local to China, as the firewall might block the traffic otherwise. The Chinese Photon Name Server is "ns.photonengine.cn".

Connecting with clients from outside of China mainland will most likely not produce good results. Also, connecting from the Photon servers to servers outside of China mainland (e.g. for Custom Authentication, WebHooks, WebRPCs) might not be reliable.

Important: in the current phase, changes you make to your app via your dashboard are not automatically reflected in the app caches for China. Let us know by email if you have an update request there.

Also, for legal reasons, you need a separate build for China and we recommend using a separate AppId with it. For example, use a compile condition (of your choice) to change the AppId and the Photon Name Server depending on the build.

Follow the instructions corresponding to your client SDK to make a special build for the Chinese market.

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Photon Voice

Without PUN integration

void ConnectToChina()
{
    // you could also set these values directly in the VoiceConnection.Settings from Unity Editor
    // in that case call voiceConnection.ConnectUsingSettings(); without passing parameter
    AppSettings settings = new AppSettings();
    settings.FixedRegion = "cn";
    settings.UseNameServer = true;
    settings.AppIdVoice = "ChinaVoiceAppId"; // TODO: replace with your own AppId
    settings.AppVersion = "ChinaAppVersion"; // optional
    settings.Server = "ns.photonengine.cn";
    voiceConnection.ConnectUsingSettings(settings);
}

With PUN integration and using PUN settings

void ConnectToChina()
{
    // you could also set these values directly in the PhotonServerSettings from Unity Editor
    PhotonNetwork.PhotonServerSettings.AppSettings.FixedRegion = "cn";
    PhotonNetwork.PhotonServerSettings.AppSettings.UseNameServer = true;
    PhotonNetwork.PhotonServerSettings.AppSettings.AppIdRealtime = "ChinaPUNAppId"; // TODO: replace with your own AppId
    PhotonNetwork.PhotonServerSettings.AppSettings.AppIdVoice = "ChinaVoiceAppId"; // TODO: replace with your own AppId
    PhotonNetwork.PhotonServerSettings.AppSettings.AppVersion = "ChinaAppVersion"; // optional
    PhotonNetwork.PhotonServerSettings.AppSettings.Server = "ns.photonengine.cn";
    PhotonNetwork.ConnectUsingSettings();
}

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