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Will carbine be the first mmo company to properly anticipate server demand at launch?

Discussion in 'WildStar General' started by Xaverian, Apr 7, 2013.

  1. Xaverian

    Xaverian New Cupcake

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    Recently with swtor and-in crushing fashion-simcity, both games were riddled w problems at launch (or in Star Wars case) a couple weeks after. I hope that carbine invests in the necessary infrastructure to improve upon mmo games reputation for sucking at launch. Pre downloads are a must. Also I hope they over prepare for server demand -even if they have to downsize later on down the road.

    Bottom line: I'm pumped for this game and its in the studios financial best interest to make sure launch is as smooth as possible. It will go a long way in most gamers hearts and future word of mouth for the game. Lets see if carbine actually reads these posts.
     
  2. Glacius

    Glacius Cupcake-About-Town

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    I don't there is anyway a company could prepare servers for launch. There will always be way too many people that try to log in at the same time. Though from what I remember GW2 was the smoothest launch so I'm sure Carbine will deliver.
     
  3. Zapp Brannigan

    Zapp Brannigan Cupcake-About-Town

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    I'd rather them launch with limited servers and compensate for the fact by having overflow servers, like GW2. One of SW:TOR's major problems was servers feeling dead as people left, which just lead to more people leaving.

    There will be a high amount of people at launch and not all of those people will stick around, that's almost guaranteed. Opening more servers as population demands really isn't good for the longevity of the game.
     
  4. Jojin

    Jojin Cupcake-About-Town

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    Unless an MMO is using a one world design and has contracted out server hosting to a facility which allows for scaling demand, it isn't feasible to expect then to be able to handle the initial launch load perfectly.
     
  5. Nekofest

    Nekofest Cupcake-About-Town

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    I imagine it's better to add servers to meet demand than to have more than you need and end up having to merge servers.

    Looks bad for the game as well if you have to merge servers, especially early into its life.
     
  6. Simokon

    Simokon Cupcake-About-Town

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    I am sure the servers will melt on day one, it is destiny.
     
  7. Mythicalbrit

    Mythicalbrit New Cupcake

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    I think a major part of the issue is that MMO Companies for some reason cant understand that they have to ATLEAST expect 60-70% of the people that pre-order the game will be logging in on the SECOND, of launch.
     
  8. Zapp Brannigan

    Zapp Brannigan Cupcake-About-Town

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    That's the thing; if they add servers to meet demand at launch, when the launch numbers/concurrency dies down, they'll have a bunch of half-empty servers and need to merge.
     
  9. Nekofest

    Nekofest Cupcake-About-Town

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    So either way it's bad end, no way of winning
     
  10. Zapp Brannigan

    Zapp Brannigan Cupcake-About-Town

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    Not exactly. To deal with this issue, GW2 had what they called 'overflow servers'. You'd pick the server that you wanted to play with your friends/guildmates on, a 'main' server. If that server was full, you'd be placed into an overflow server while you were in the queue for the main server, essentially allowing you to play the game while you waited for the queue to pop. When you hit the front of the queue for the main server, you'd keep all of your progress and just continue playing the game. You were able to play with your friends in an overflow server, though this was buggy at launch and took a little while for ANet to fix.

    The other potential preventative is to have servers with ridiculously high capacities and zone phasing. If you can fit (and I'm pulling this number out of my ass) 50 thousand people onto a server and 50% of people leave, who's going to notice? There's still 25, 000 people playing on your server. The phasing part helps with early game congestion by limiting the number of people that can be in a zone together. Say that a zone can hold 200 people without things getting too laggy/cluttered/not enough mobs. The 201st person to enter that zone will be phased into a second, identical zone, the 401st into a third zone, and so on.
     
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  11. Kataryna

    Kataryna Super Cupcake

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    remember, they have said that the first "zones" (levels 1-3 i think? or was it 1-5?) are instanced and are also limited to 50 people at a time. this will take care of the "too many people in one place at one time" issue, esp if they have an early access for pre-purchasing.

    also, Rift had a very very smooth launch, very minor problems if any.

    also, also, the rest of the world is non-instanced.
     
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  12. Jynetik

    Jynetik "That" Cupcake

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    Capt. Brannigan has had it right so far, overflow servers (horray for both games being under NCSoft's umbrella) are pretty much the best answer to this problem. The headaches that they cause in terms of being able to play with your friends, and some other odd issues are well worth the amount of big problems they mitigate. The problem with the last couple major MMO launches is that they have all had insane booms in population right at launch and then most of the people just disappear after a few weeks leaving a lot of dead servers. That isn't how it used to be with MMO launches, this is pretty much a post-WoW phenomenon, again echoing back to what Jeremy Gaffney said about the 1-3 million people who buy each new MMO at launch looking for the next big thing.

    I have a lot of respect for the guys working at Carbine and it seems like they really know what they are doing and have been watching all of these other MMO's struggle with their launch issues over the past half a decade or so. I am pretty confident that they will have a good plan to deal with potential launch issues and the weeks and months that follow.

    Hopefully server mergers won't be an issue post-launch as WildStar may just be a great enough game to actually gain users over time instead of losing them like so many other recent MMOs.
     
  13. Ego13

    Ego13 Cupcake-About-Town

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    It's precisely this.
    Logistically it makes no sense to buy 5 times the amount of login servers that you'll need for the server loads to be that high for just a couple days. I mean...even considering a great launch if there's 1 million people the first couple days that won't be a consistent amount, the problem is if they gear for that then when it comes down to 1/4 that after a month and logins spread out then they've wasted a BUNCH of money.

    Until there's new tech that makes server loads inconsequential this will always be a launch problem.
     
  14. Graff (FLB)

    Graff (FLB) Cupcake-About-Town

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    Servers can only be prepared as much as the people who set them are.
     
  15. Avenged

    Avenged Cupcake-About-Town

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    No. Impossible. If they properly meet server demands, with no queues or problems whatsoever, then that means the game was probably not successful.
     
  16. Agon

    Agon Cupcake

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    Won't ever work perfectly, when a game launches theres at least 30% more load on the server for a few weeks. Wouldn't make sense for companies to make it so the servers can perfectly handle it when it won't ever be needed after those few weeks.
     
  17. Ico

    Ico Moderator • WSC's Gentle Flower

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    The only way this would work is if you have servers than can dynamically allocate system resources including max size and connections based on the activity of the server. Server loads are always huge for the first month, normally forcing the devs into launching more servers, which backfires when the toe-dippers quit and leave a good sized playerbase spread over 10-20 servers instead of the 6 they could all fit on (which then starts quitting because there's barely anyone to play with)!

    These kinds of decisions can kill guilds as well unfortunately, after the Exodus from a game, all guilds get hit hard and there's very few people left to fill the spots. So guilds start cannibalising each other and you really see what some people will do for their guild...
     
  18. Merketh

    Merketh Cupcake

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    unless they are doing one big mega server that can seamlessly get larger, I't will be very hard to predict. even with open beta ( if they even have one) numbers.
     
  19. champ

    champ New Cupcake

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    2 minutes after early access went live there was a 90 minute queue for my server on rift. I know cause I logged in bang at 4:00 am my time and my friend ( who went to get a coffee ) tried 2 minutes after and told me to start without him. Throughout the day the queue just got longer, peaking at a 6 hour wait. Retail launch may have seemed smoother because so many people had come in through pre order.

    I don't see any way out of nightmarish MMO launches. If there was, than the internet would have an infrastructure to shrug of DDOS attacks. Which it doesn't. What we do on launch day is similar to a DDOS attack, except there is half a million real people spamming that login button at the same time.
     
  20. Xaverian

    Xaverian New Cupcake

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    I guess I fall into the category of: I prefer the game be playable from the start regardless of apparent lack of server population.

    I don't care if things get merged as needed down the line.

    Also while I respect the prior posts, I disagree that a smooth launch is "impossible"---we just haven't seen one yet.
     

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