If I were to have my 360 connected to a VPN and had other players connect their 360s to the same VPNand then connect to my game would that increase speeds/chunk loading for players or would it not make a noticeable difference. I don't have much experience with VPNs so I am not sure how things would work out.
I've done quite a bit of research into the 360 map chunk sending/loading.
A Virtual private network wouldn't make much difference at all in how the game loads/unloads.
In most of my tracking the 360 isn't sending just a few chunks to users, it more or less 'bombards' them with a HUGE amount of data. I've seen it stream 21mb within a few mins after 1 user connects. I believe that it doesn't just send the chunks that the user needs, but more so every chunk that is loaded. I could be wrong but this would explain why there is soooo much lag on the 360 version. When playing on the PC i don't experience the type of lag i do on the 360 version. It would also explain as to why as more and more chunks become loaded that users begin to experience more and more lag.
Hopefully as time goes on and 4J gets a chance to optimize the code, we might see that chunks are only sent/received when relevant to the user in question.
Hmmmm however when a player is loading it doesn't just load all the chunk around them it usually loads in the direction they are moving. At least in my experience this is what seems to happen. So lets say hypothetically that this is the case, would it make a difference at all or is ultimately the biggest issue with the game the fact that the 360 has issues handling that many players in the same game.
It has nothing to do with the 360 not able to handle 4 players or more, it has to do with how much data and how this data is being sent along the pipes. The underlying network seems to be very poorly done and ALOT different then its PC counterpart. You can easilly test this by doing a compare of the BW used, login to the 360, start MC, and invite one other player. once that player has joined pull up your router or gateway or network and find the xbox transmition packets or stream and write down how many 'bytes' its currently at, now you and your friend just move in the longest direction possible to an edge of the map, and after 1 min stop. grab the bytes sent/received again and subtract to get the total.
Now do the same on the PC, what you will find is that its MUCH MUCH MUCH less, in not even 1/4 of the data being sent/received as the xbox version.
The Conclusion, there is some serious data transferring going on within the 360 version, what and how is a mystery without being able to look at the code.
There are not enough users 'complaining' about the the lag issues to warrant 4J looking at the code, hopefully this will change once the next gen comes out and more and more people begin to play together, however if next gen uses loading/unloading chunk mechanics this may not help the 360 version at all.