Blue Mammoth Games, an independent game development studio based in Atlanta, has found a stronghold in the industry with its fighting game Brawlhalla. Brawlhalla has grown to over 5 million players and now hosts a Brawlhalla World Championship annually. As the Blue Mammoth’s community has grown, so too has its facility. The company outfitted an extension of the office to work as a broadcast studio that includes a control room, server room, and two sets. Each space houses essential broadcast equipment that needs to be accessed and integrated as if in the same room.
The control room was where all the game developer’s PCs were located. These PCs generate several broadcast critical elements, including graphics, replay, playback, and audio. The server room-housed the Carbonite Switcher, networking, and encoder, which was equally essential to their broadcasts. As a result of these separate spaces and equipment, Blue Mammoth was burdened with a significant amount of cabling between the control room and the server room. Any time new equipment was added, it called for additional cable runs, either through the ceiling, or in last minute cases, across the floor—upwards of 2500 feet of cabling. On the security side, anyone with access to the control room was able to interface directly with critical broadcast infrastructure. There was also the challenge that cables could be disconnected during operations if bumped or tripped over.
Installing a KVM system would allow Blue Mammoth to move all the broadcast-critical machines into the server room, reduce a significant amount of cabling, allow for a greater degree of flexibility in upgrading, and changing new equipment as well as address arising security issues.
The company selected IHSE’s Draco tera flex KVM matrix switch and Draco vario HDMI extender. Introduced in 2020, the Draco tera flex KVM matrix systems bring advanced features found in IHSE’s larger scale matrix frames in a design built for smaller applications. Port options range from 16 ports to 160 ports and can be packaged in 1-, 2-, or 4-RU frames sizes. The Draco tera flex incorporates several advanced features from the Draco tera enterprise series, including LDAPS, encrypted communication for maximum security, and fast booting. The switch’s modular structure permits the simple interchange of individual components and supports future expansion.
IHSE’s Draco vario HDMI extender gives users real-time access to HDMI computers from a remote workstation, including monitor, keyboard, mouse, loudspeakers, and other peripheral devices. It extends high-resolution HDMI video signals, including 3D formats, full HD, and 2K, as well as digital audio signals. Multi-head applications are achieved using an optional module.
The company was able to install the IHSE KVM system over the course of two days, full revamping the studio, including running additional Cat-6 for the user stations. With IHSE’s KVM and extender solutions, Blue Mammoth was able to greatly reduce the amount of cabling between the control room and the server room. This had the added benefit of improving noise levels, heat, and available space in the control room. Solo operation of the broadcast studio is also significantly easier. One user can macro into any computer as needed with no delay and without posing security risks.