| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (100)

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:37AM Dracones said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Why gaming companies still use individual servers is beyond me. You never have the capacity you want at launch or when expansions hit and when the game is at a low, you end up having to go through server merges to keep the population up.

It's an outdated concept from the 90's when hardware clustering was in its infancy and we didn't have things like on demand virtualization.

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:47AM daikamar said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dracones
Well to keep the population down for one. Not really fun when the PCs outnumber the NPCs

And don't get stuck on symantics. "Server" is just the term MMOs and the players have been using to distinguish game instances. Each "server" uses a hardware cluster just like most MMOs have done for years now.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:48AM Drakkon said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dracones Because individual servers allow you to have different rulesets. In this case, the traditional PvE-only, PvE-RP, and PvP rules are setup by Trion to indicate the values they expect players on those servers to have. Interestingly enough, the demand for PvP servers outstripped the demand for PvE servers, as most of the servers put up were PvP rulesets.

As for me, I got on the server I played on in Beta only to leave after the starting area because my fellow soon to be guildmates decided to roll on a new server as there was no queue on it at that time. 3 hours in queue, 6 disconnects while waiting, but I got in. Not bad, all in all. I find the hoopla over it to be grossly over-dramatized by the immediate-gratification crowd. It wasn't any different on the release day for WoW, EQ2, Aion, or any other AAA MMO. Just wait for the crowd on the actual release date when those who DIDN'T pre-order get their copies...
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:50AM Pewpdaddy said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dracones

I've seen someone crying for this in about every thread about RIFT. I obviously don't have any legit numbers for RIFT but EVE's highest ever concurrent users is right about 55k to 60k. Picture that on WoW's sub base, 11 million subs... So possibly Hundreds of thousands of concurrent users logged in. Not to say it can't be done. Just no one has had the marbles to try it yet.

I myself prefer the shard system. The hecklers and clowns typically stick to their own server. And the community is smaller so you remember when "whoever" ruined your run, or was a quality player.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:52AM Yellowdancer said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dracones

Performance and ease of support (No single point of failure). A single server is fine if you have a small game population or your game doesn't strain your(or users) resources but performance drops as your population increases.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:56AM Aberhams said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Pewpdaddy

Rift claimed over 1million regestered accounts the other day, dunno if thats pre-orders or just people who participated in the beta or even just forum accounts, but its an impressive number. far more than any single-shard mmo can really expect to handle.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 12:11PM Dracones said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Pewpdaddy

Guild Wars did this quite well and it came out about 6 years ago. You just use instancing. It solves so many issues and can be done dynamically.

Even WoW is basically moving towards this. The Dungeon Finder and Battlegrounds all pull from all the servers, but it's sort of the worst of both worlds the way they had to hack in on. You meet up with people from other servers on PUGs, only to never be able to see them again.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 1:14PM wondersmith said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dracones

Well said! Aside from incompetence, there is no reason for fragmenting the playerbase beyond the requirements of different rulesets. As you mentioned, Guild Wars did this years ago, as did Free Realms. I expected all games that followed to use this improved design, but noooooo, they still can't figure out how to do what Arenanet and SOE accomplished long before.

Guild Wars and Free Realms effectively have more players than WoW, because you can play with any of them, any time.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 1:50PM Zuato said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dracones Guild Wars gives the impression that it is a single shard but if you look you end up in a "district" and it's random based on the populations of the others. I still like how GW did it, but it really isn't a single server/shard set up.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 2:23PM Duffy said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dracones

That solution only works when all of your content is instanced and independent of random player interaction. In a traditional open world MMO that approach creates significant overhead issues and shatters world immersion.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 4:33PM Luftwaffles said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@wondersmith This is sort of true with Guild Wars. Yes you can join any district and therefor group with ANY other player, but all content outside of town is instanced because of this system. You will never spontaneously encounter people along your adventures.. which makes the world feel kind of dead.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 5:33PM wondersmith said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Luftwaffles

You're confusing Guild Wars' instancing with its serverless design. It could just as well have outdoor areas be shared among everyone who chooses the same "district". That's how Free Realms works: You select a server at login, experience a shared world with everyone else who made the same choice, and move between worlds whenever you wish. This is better in every way.

I still don't understand why Rift and other new games remain in the stone age in terms of server architecture...compared to games that don't even charge subscription fees!
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:44AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I must have just picked the right shard ... because I was on all day (for the most part) and when they had to do a quick patch the server was back up in 15 minutes ...

When I did have to log off for a while, the queue was never longer than 30 minutes when I came back. This is pretty much the most rock solid MMO launch that I have ever seen ... no major bugs, no crashes and a really fun, wild game to boot! Storming those rifts with dozens and dozens of other players was crazy fun (and my frame rate never got below about 50fps)!

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:51AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Besides some huge server queues this launch is the most stable launch I've ever seen in an MMO

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 10:59AM Sorithal said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I think what's most irritating is how for stuff like RP servers, there are plenty of people with names not even suitable for RPing with who flooded over there, thus making the queues ridiculously long and filling up the server with people who are irritating to deal with.

I'm hoping Trion sets up some RP server rules soon.

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 11:01AM Sorithal said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Sorithal

It is quite awesome how Trion quickly handled things within the first few hours by tossing on several more servers. Sure, that might come to hurt them in the future if too many players quit... but so far the game is really fun, solid, and exciting to play. The wait is worth it, and hopefully they keep up the great work with handling all of this.

Yes I realize I probably sound like a Trion fanboy. Kind of hard not to with how well they've been doing stuff so far.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 11:00AM lmollea said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
My guild selected Whitefall as our home server. I came home and found 3000+ people in queue. Had dinner, got out for a beer with friends, came back home about midnight and, unluckily I had disconnected. Logged in again and ... 1500+ people in queue. I decided to go to sleep.

Tried this morning about 10am and I had 800 people in queue. At 2pm they where 1000+.

One complaint I have is that characters in MMOs are always on a per shard basis. Why don't they do a cross-shard character database so in case of "full" shard you can still play on a different shard while still keeping all your stats and affiliations? I personally think that the technology to do such a thing is mature enough...

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 12:10PM Irem said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@lmollea
From what I understand, Guild Wars 2 will allow you to switch between servers freely at any time, much as you're suggesting.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 7:26PM ErikC said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@lmollea THIS is the actual issue with MMO launches, yeah. The actual quanitity of servers is totally fine. It's just that that as long as the game is sharded in any permanent sense, many people will always want to play on the most popular servers. So there will always be people actively choosing the most full servers at launch. So there will always be queues as long as sufficient interest in the game exists.
Reply

Posted: Feb 25th 2011 11:01AM Aberhams said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I wasn't able to get onto the server i had initialy planned on playing on (8hour queue for the lose). I think i found a good one anyways though.

once I did find a server I could get into I was very impressed by the stability and polish of everything, didn't feel at all like any MMO launch I've been a part of.

Also, it was halarious watching hordes of lvl 10-12 people zerging lvl 19 rifts and just getting destroyed. Really got a kick out of that kind of thing, the balance will be fine when more people level but until it evens out some, the rifts are winning!

Featured Stories

Leaderboard: Which dead MMO is your favorite?

Posted on Jul 30th 2014 12:00PM

The Daily Grind: Do you prize MMO stability?

Posted on Jul 30th 2014 8:00AM

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW