After various performance improvements over the last few days (now things are smooth at 80 players per district after all the CPU, speed, OS and core tuning that has taken place), there was still a persistent frame lag spike that seemed to crop up with some regular pattern, causing some rubber-banding on the client.
So Johann/Aphadon, using his great detective skills was finally able to figure out the issue behind some of the strange performance spikes (often seen as rubber-banding on the client when it happens).
Turns out there appears to be a bug in the new death camera. So whenever someone dies in the district and the camera swings toward the assailant, there is a chance the server will suffer a frame-blip/skip/jump during the "look-at-killer" process.
Or, one could say the server is sad for the loss, and will take a brief 100ms moment of silence :). Not a great thing since it drops everyone's performance district wide when it happens. The good news is that we presume it will be possible to fix this spike issue in the next day or two.
OR - we could just ask everyone kindly to not shoot their fellow players in the next 48 hours :). No death = no lag :)
That of course would potentially stop the game from actually being a game, so it could be a bit of a problem.
Once this issue has been nailed down by our fantastic dev team, then we are REASONABLY certain that we have taken care of all core performance issues, and then can start looking at expanding all the district to larger populations (next step: 100 people per district), AND adding more people to the Beta Test!
The team is also of course incredibly hard at work for the Open Beta features and changes, and those are critical to re-introduce logical progression and progress into the game again.
I will post another update tomorrow, and if there appears to be a reasonably quick fix (and rubber banding can be reduced) - then we will patch and observe the build in the wild to confirm this.
We also do see some performance spikes with Punkbuster as it monitors players, but at least those spikes are now within reason, and seems compatible with the overall game performance.
Have fun in San Paro!