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Nakama C/C++ Client SDK

C/C++ client for Nakama server.

Nakama is an open-source server designed to power modern games and apps. Features include user accounts, chat, social, matchmaker, realtime multiplayer, and much more.

This client implements the full API and socket options with the server. It's written in C and C++11 with minimal dependencies to support Unreal, Cocos2d-x, Oculus, and other custom engines and frameworks.

We also support various game consoles. Please reach out to to discuss console support for your project.

If you experience any issues with the client, open an issue.

Full documentation is online -



The client object has many methods to execute various features in the server or open realtime socket connections with the server.

Use the connection credentials to build a client object.

NClientParameters parameters;
parameters.serverKey = "defaultkey"; = "";
parameters.port = DEFAULT_PORT;
NClientPtr client = createDefaultClient(parameters);

The createDefaultClient will create HTTP/1.1 client to use REST API.


The tick method pumps requests queue and executes callbacks in your thread. You must call it periodically (recommended every 50ms) in your thread.

if (rtClient)

Without this the default client and realtime client will not work, and you will not receive responses from the server.


There's a variety of ways to authenticate with the server. Authentication can create a user if they don't already exist with those credentials. It's also easy to authenticate with a social profile from Google Play Games, Facebook, Game Center, etc.

string email = "";
string password = "batsignal";

auto successCallback = [](NSessionPtr session)
    std::cout << "session token: " << session->getAuthToken() << std::endl;

auto errorCallback = [](const NError& error)

client->authenticateEmail(email, password, "", false, {}, successCallback, errorCallback);


When authenticated the server responds with an auth token (JWT) which contains useful properties and gets deserialized into a NSession object.

std::cout << session->getAuthToken() << std::endl; // raw JWT token
std::cout << session->getUserId() << std::endl;
std::cout << session->getUsername() << std::endl;
std::cout << "Session has expired: " << session->isExpired() << std::endl;
std::cout << "Session expires at: " << session->getExpireTime() << std::endl;

It is recommended to store the auth token from the session and check at startup if it has expired. If the token has expired you must reauthenticate. The expiry time of the token can be changed as a setting in the server.

string authtoken = "restored from somewhere";
NSessionPtr session = restoreSession(authtoken);
if (session->isExpired()) {
    std::cout << "Session has expired. Must reauthenticate!" << std::endl;


The client includes lots of builtin APIs for various features of the game server. These can be accessed with the async methods. It can also call custom logic as RPC functions on the server. These can also be executed with a socket object.

All requests are sent with a session object which authorizes the client.

auto successCallback = [](const NAccount& account)
    std::cout << "user id : " << << std::endl;
    std::cout << "username: " << account.user.username << std::endl;
    std::cout << "wallet  : " << account.wallet << std::endl;

client->getAccount(session, successCallback, errorCallback);

Realtime client

The client can create one or more realtime clients with the server. Each realtime client can have it's own events listener registered for responses received from the server.

bool createStatus = true; // if the socket should show the user as online to others.
// define realtime client in your class as NRtClientPtr rtClient;
rtClient = client->createRtClient();
// define listener in your class as NRtDefaultClientListener listener;
    std::cout << "Socket connected" << std::endl;
rtClient->connect(session, createStatus);

Don't forget to call tick method. See Tick section for details.


Initializing Logger

Client logging is off by default.

To enable logs output to console with debug logging level:


To enable logs output to custom sink with debug logging level:

NLogger::init(sink, NLogLevel::Debug);

Using Logger

To log string with debug logging level:

NLOG_DEBUG("debug log");

formatted log:

NLOG(NLogLevel::Info, "This is string: %s", "yup I'm string");
NLOG(NLogLevel::Info, "This is int: %d", 5);

Changing logging level boundary:


NLogger behaviour depending on logging level boundary:

  • Debug writes all logs.

  • Info writes logs with Info, Warn, Error and Fatal logging level.

  • Warn writes logs with Warn, Error and Fatal logging level.

  • Error writes logs with Error and Fatal logging level.

  • Fatal writes only logs with Fatal logging level.

Note: to use logging macros you have to define NLOGS_ENABLED.

Websockets transport

Nakama C++ client has built-in support for WebSocket. This is available on all supported platforms.

Client will default to use the Websocket transport provided by C++ REST SDK.

You can use a custom Websocket transport by implementing the NRtTransportInterface:

rtClient = client->createRtClient(websockets_transport);

Activity timeout

Built-in websocket transport supports "Activity timeout" feature - if no any message received from server during "Activity timeout" then connection will be closed. Set 0 to disable this feature (default value).

rtClient->getTransport()->setActivityTimeout(20000); // 20 sec

You can change ping period on server - ping_period_ms parameter:


To use our native C++ library in your Android application, you will need to include an additional .aar file that we ship for SSL support.

For example, in Gradle:

implementation files("<path/to/libnakama-sdk.aar>")

Then you will need to load our native library from Java by calling System.loadLibrary("nakama-sdk") when your activity is created.

How to build


You should download vcpkg ( somewhere on your machine set your $VCPKG_ROOT environment variable to point to the repository.



  • CMake
  • Ninja
  • gcc-c++/clang++

Ubuntu 18.04

Fresh Ubuntu 18.04 setup:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install git pkg-config g++ curl zip unzip tar make
mkdir -p ~/opt; curl -L  | tar -C ~/opt -xzf -
mkdir -p ~/bin; ln -s ~/opt/cmake-3.23.1-linux-x86_64/bin/cmake ~/bin/
cd /tmp; curl -L -O; unzip; mv ninja ~/bin
exec /bin/bash -l   # make ~/bin available on PATH
git clone /mnt/z/repos/nakama-cpp ~/localrepos/nakama-cpp
cd ~/localrepos/nakama-cpp

If you plan to use WITH_LIBCXX, then also do following:

sudo add-apt-repository --yes ppa:ubuntu-toolchain-r/test
sudo apt install g++-11 python3-distutils
export CC=/usr/bin/gcc-11
export CXX=/usr/bin/g++-11


  • brew install ninja cmake pkg-config
  • XCode or XCode command line tools


There are preconfigured presets in the CMakePresets.json. You can get list of presets for your system with:

cmake --list-presets

Then configure the build system.

cmake --preset linux-amd64

The configuration step builds all necessary dependencies and installs them under ./build/*/vcpkg_installed.

Next, build the SDK:

cmake --build build/linux-amd64 --config MinSizeRel --target install


To build Linux release you can use provided Docker image like following:

docker buildx build -f scripts/Dockerfile --progress=plain --output=./out .


To build for Android set your ANDROID_NDK_HOME environment variable to your NDK before building.

Your NDK is typically located within your SDK:<sdk>/ndk/<ndk-version>

Our prebuilt libraries target Android NDK 25.1.8937393.

Windows 32-Bit

We support native 32-bit builds. Keep in mind that when building from source, you must run your command in a 32-bit (e.g., C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe) environment.

Build modifiers

Presets mostly represent platforms SDK can be built for. Sometimes within platforms build configuration need to be modified, but if we create preset for each build configuration we'd have too many of them. We have a way to alter build behaviour of any preset with a build modifiers mechanism.

Supported build modifiers are:

  • LIBHTTPCLIENT_FORCE_WEBSOCKETPP: On Windows platforms libhttpclient always includes websocketpp transport and uses it if Windows doesn't support websocket natively (< Windows 8). You can set this build modifier to force use of websocketpp transport, so that it can be tested without installing Windows 7. If you
  • WITH_LIBCXX: dynamically link with libc++ instead of libstdc++ on Linux platform.
    • LIBCXX_STATIC: link libc++ statically
  • ADDRESS_SANITIZER: instrument library with AddressSanitizer

Build modifiers are CMake variables passed at configure time using -D switch. Example use:

cmake --preset linux-amd64 -DWITH_LIBCXX=ON


cmake --install --preset linux-amd64 --config MinSizeRel

You should see dynamic library and headers in the ./out directory. This is your release.

It is safe to combine (overlay) multiple platforms releases in the same directory structure, because binary artifacts paths won't clash and include files are identical on all platforms.

MacOSX Universal binary

Currently, our dependency manager can't build non-CMake based projects as universal binary. Watch this PR for a proper fix. Until then building universal binaries requires building shared libs for arm64 and x86_64 architectures and gluing them together with lipo tool.

To build universal binary first compile individual shared lib for arm64 and x86_64. Following commands are for M1, adjust preset names if you are on Intel CPU:

cmake --preset macosx-x64-host_arm64
cmake --build build/macosx-x64-host_arm64 --config MinSizeRel --target install

cmake --preset macosx-arm64-host_arm64
cmake --build build/macosx-arm64-host_arm64 --config MinSizeRel --target install
cp -r out/macosx-x64 out/macosx-universal
lipo -create -output out/macosx-universal/nakama-sdk.framework/Versions/A/nakama-sdk out/macosx-{arm64,x64}/nakama-sdk.framework/nakama-sdk

You can then archive and release out/osx-universal directory.


Platforms vary in their implementation of transports for HTTP and WS. One of the transports, libhttpclient itself can use different implementations depending on the platform.


Platform Transport
Windows libhttpclient -> winhttp
Android libcurl
Linux libhttpclient->curl
MacOS libhttpclient -> OS
iOS libhttpclient -> OS
Windows 7 libhttpclient -> websocketpp


Platform Transport
Windows libhttpclient -> winhttp
Android wslay
Linux wslay
MacOS wslay
iOS wslay
Windows 7 libhttpclient -> websocketpp

How to integrate the SDK

There are three ways of integrating the SDK into your build.

Github Release

We provide headers and binaries for all supported platforms in our releases section.


After downloading it to a folder you've configured CMake to look for targets in, you can import our package via the find_package command in CMake: find_package(nakama-sdk).


Our SDK integrates with vcpkg by providing itself and a few dependencies through a git registry. To include it in your vcpkg manifest, create a vcpkg-configuration.json in your root directory.

            "kind": "git",
            "repository": "",
            "baseline": "<commit>",
            "reference": "<branch>",
            "packages": ["nakama-sdk", "wslay"]

Then you can add it as you would any other vcpkg port in your vcpkg.json:

    "dependencies": [
        "name": "nakama-sdk"
        "features": [<desired-feature-1>, <desired-feature-2>]

vcpkg does not currently allow us to provide default features per platform, so you must specify your desired transports/features in your own vcpkg.json.

For an example, look at how our cocos-2d-x client does this. Also see our our built-in transports for each platform that we represent with vcpkg features. If you do not specify a transport for the platform, the client will expect you to pass in your own at runtime.