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Post by KostaAndreadis @ 03:11pm 03/09/15 | 39 Comments
Being able to look at a list of servers and then pick where to play an online shooter is slowly becoming a thing of the past. In its place we find matchmaking systems that work off increasingly complex algorithms. Well, complex in the sense that they usually just plop you on the server with the lowest ping and average number of players. But for many PC players, being able to manually select a server by looking at its ping, the number of players, and where all their friends are at, is pretty important. Playing DICE's Battlefield 4 any other way would feel, wrong. So why then, is Star Wars Battlefront (also from DICE) going the matchmaking route?

For those of us who live in Australia, being able to select a local or low ping server is pretty important. Our distance from the rest of the world and insatiable appetite for seamless online gaming are but two of the many things that make us special. So hearing about a multiplayer matchmaking system for any upcoming game, makes us a little suspicious. Or at the very least, a tad skeptical. Star Wars Battlefront, from Swedish developer DICE, is using such a system. And coming from the developer behind the Battlefield series, which has a long history of server-browsing, this news has come as a shock to some. And naturally, has upset a few people.



But, should it? Although for all intents and purposes Battlefront is viewed as Battlefield: Star Wars Edition, the game is actually shaping up to be a very different experience. For one, the Star Wars name lends itself to a broader audience. So things like squads, commanders, iron sights, and other team-based shooter ingredients are being given the miss. Instead, players will only be able to team up with a single friend, or play co-operative missions with friends.

In turn the matchmaking system being implemented by Star Wars Battlefront will be based on player skill, although detail on how it will actually work are still vague. All in all it sounds like a clear attempt to ensure that casual players don't get thrown into an experience where they die repeatedly, without knowing why, how, or who. And are then chastised by their team for not being good at playing a pretend virtual war game. Or some other strictly hypothetical scenario. In a sense, matchmaking sounds about right for a Star Wars game. If it works as intended.

But, no server-browsing makes you wonder if the game will feel at home with the sort of hardcore audience that plays a game like Battlefield. At the very least, in a country where low ping is king, this news makes us a little bit skeptical.

Star Wars Battlefront will be available November 17, 2015 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC.



star wars battlefrontmatchmakingmultiplayeronlinepcservers





Latest Comments
MARLINBLADE
Posted 03:22pm 03/9/15
No server browsers... the next thing will be no dedicated servers either... Pathetic

I have never once had a good experience with match making ever and i don't see how this is going to be any better. Feeling more and more like a console game with a s***** PC port... awesome
Khel
Posted 03:36pm 03/9/15
Functionally, I don't think it really matters that much one way or the other. Where it hurts is it kills that community aspect of it, like people who play regularly on the same servers and get to know the other regulars who play there.
Xeper
Posted 04:39pm 03/9/15
Dedicated servers have major draw backs (f*** wit admins, one sided servers, ques, no Admins, trolls etc) and then big advantages (map selection, Admin customisation, unrestricted banning, selection based on lowest ping etc.) which DICE is abundantly aware of so they are trying to balance it out with new match making software.

Match Making has no issues with region locks or ping management on CSGO they could borrow from the CSGO competitive ranked match making and allow map selection to ease some of the pain for PC.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 05:36pm 03/9/15

In turn the matchmaking system being implemented by Star Wars Battlefront will be based on player skill, although detail on how it will actually work are still vague. All in all it sounds like a clear attempt to ensure that casual players don't get thrown into an experience where they die repeatedly, without knowing why, how, or who.


CSGO has Match Making that works really well and keeps players playing against people of their on skill. For comp games. It has a 'casual' mode where it dumps you one a server under a certain ping threshold.

It also has dedicated community servers, where you can go and do all the fun stuff. It's where people who actually want to get good at the game go.


This news about Battlefield - Star Wars Edition, has troubled me and turned my instant-buy into 'wait and see, not sold now'.
No dedicated community servers also means the community can't step up and provide many more servers during the launch of the game, which means launch could be a frustrating time of spending hours trying to get into a laggy server with randoms you don't even know.

Sad times.

Darkhawk
Posted 06:10pm 03/9/15
I only want to play single-player anyway. If it's too multi-focused I'll just pirate it, no point spending big coin to play a skeleton game that's a bot-fest.
Khel
Posted 07:14pm 03/9/15
If it's multiplayer focused, pirating it seems even more pointless, because then you really can't do anything with it
Everlong
Posted 07:20pm 03/9/15
Why are game devs going this way? Is it harder or more expensive to code a server browser?

Do they still make games with the 'lowest common denominator' mindset?

Gamers know how to get online and have always wanted choice so why stifle the customer?
BladeRunner
Posted 07:36pm 03/9/15
It seems that this is the price we pay for a new Star Wars game, it comes with a few catches.

I am not going to get too down on it, I am going to see if it works well first. If it does, that's good, if not, ill bag it mercilessly.

I think now that SWBF will be fun but won't be the thing we expected. DICE/EA/Disney are doing something different this time around. I would be happy with a Battlefield 3-4 type clone myself with a server browser, classes, actual vehicles that are not a power up thing etc.
rrrocket
Posted 08:09pm 03/9/15
am I the only one who hates bf4 server browsing?

I much prefer to have it built into the game.
infi
Posted 09:09pm 03/9/15
i miss using qgl server query
Gung-ho
Posted 11:28pm 03/9/15
It has nothing to do with a server browser being costly/difficult to deploy because it isn't. Dice are doing this because I think they have noticed some association of team stacking/unbalanced games negatively impacting on-going player activity (which in turn leads to less people buying DLC and perhaps sequels). Dice would be banking on players still buying SW:BF despite the lack of a server browser - after all the market base still bought into CoD: MW2 despite objections to a lack of dedicated servers.

Personally I think Dice should have just made both options available as the game will be big enough to support both options despite Australia's small population. Less popular games like Dirty Bomb which offers both which works in Europe and the U.S. but matchmaking games are non-existent in Australia as far as I'm aware.

The main stinging point as I see it is the pairing up with one friend limit - a small party or separate matchmaking for small parties option should be included in a manner similar to how Dota 2 handles it. Ultimately deliberate and consistent team stackers have themselves to blame for this as they create an untenable environment for solo and casual players.
trog
Posted 12:11am 04/9/15
Why are game devs going this way? Is it harder or more expensive to code a server browser?
It is so they control the entire game stack from top to bottom. So when they release a new version they can turn off the old servers and force you to upgrade.

EA have been doing this for years; I suspect they've finally gotten their infrastructure to the point where they think that they can do it with their traditional FPS games - although everything I've heard about the last round of Battlefield games has made me wonder if they're ever going to get it. (I stopped playing BF games when they moved to a non-open dedicated server model and ranking; I hated what it did to pub play.

I miss the local community aspects of the traditional dedicated server model but from a business point of view what they're doing makes total sense - once you've already got a solid player base and brand, anyway. I think new games should still do it Ye Olde Way though (see: Minecraft).
FSCB
Posted 05:54am 04/9/15
Was really looking forward to this. Now, not so much. Once again DICE and EA would like to send you, the consumer, a heartfelt "Fk you".

And dark hawk: there is no single player for SWBF. Your comment makes so little sense I wonder if you meant it sarcastically.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 06:48am 04/9/15
I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 06:48am 04/9/15
I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.
vito
Posted 12:28pm 04/9/15
I'll be holding off purchase until it's confirmed the matchmaking works properly.
Khel
Posted 12:34pm 04/9/15
I'm sure I'll still end up buying it, for better or worse, cos I'm getting waaaaaaaaay too sucked up in all the Star Wars hype lately. I am a consumer whore :(
Hogfather
Posted 11:02pm 04/9/15
I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 08:20am 05/9/15
It was so disturbing I had to write it twice.
BladeRunner
Posted 12:44pm 05/9/15
I have said this before with previous games but I will make an effort to team up with one/some of you guys for battlefront. Show c**** how we roll here at Ausgamers.
Xeper
Posted 07:03pm 05/9/15
Do you even cap and hold flags in this game? it might be just a scripted scenario that unfolds as the game progress while each army actively fights together instead of squad play (which is why they are going for the solo match making drop ins). Looks like its a 24v24 scripted spamfest or what ever the f*** the player limit is now and Im ok with that because its Star Wars so the maps better be epic.
Xeper
Posted 07:04pm 05/9/15
Chrome double posted how do you even delete...?
breno
Posted 12:48pm 06/9/15
am I the only one who hates bf4 server browsing?

I much prefer to have it built into the game.


Not a big fan of it myself (used to it now since BF3) but it's better than not having server browsing.
Everlong
Posted 06:53pm 09/9/15
Yeh cheers Trog/ Gung-ho, I suspected it was a control/ greed thing.
TicMan
Posted 03:52pm 19/11/15
I would much prefer a server browser. Playing since the 17th release, I can't tell if I'm ending up on a US server and getting my ass handed to me or if I'm just s*** (probably the later). When playing BF3 & BF4 I'd have a set list of favorite servers I'd play on too, that actually ended up creating a bit of a community and in-game friends too.
Khel
Posted 04:08pm 19/11/15
Probably on a US server, because its not out here yet, only just came out in the rest of the world today. I still haven't got my key from GMG yet cos its not out in the UK and they have UK keys :(
ctd
Posted 06:50pm 19/11/15
S***** f*****g EA c****. I keep joining servers which are 200+ ping. It is really noticeable as well when you shoot at someone and nothing registers. Or you run over a powerup and it takes half a second to register.

You can't even see your god damn ping without enabling a bunch of s*** in console.

In CSGO matchmaking you can pick the max ping search ffs.

Hoping like khel says it improves tonight as more aussies get the game.
Python
Posted 07:24pm 19/11/15
I haven't had a problem getting local servers, all my friends get local too. Odd!
Saint
Posted 11:52am 20/11/15
Been seeing heaps of reports of nobody getting local servers. Sounds like they need to tweak things a bit (hopefully they do).
ctd
Posted 03:35pm 20/11/15
Managed to join one local server before. Went to change modes and now it is back to selecting 200ms servers. Quit.
TicMan
Posted 04:02pm 20/11/15
How to enable ping display via console?

I swear all I get is US servers. I point blank blast c**** in the face and nothing happens to them but I die.
ctd
Posted 04:09pm 20/11/15
Yeah mate enemies are spongey as f*** on 200ms.

NetworkPerfOverlay.Enable TRUE
NetworkPerfOverlay.DrawGraph TRUE
TicMan
Posted 05:31pm 20/11/15
Yeah pretty much every game I join is 140ms+ plus even though in the multiplayer selection screen I'm getting 30ms.

Edit: Something seems really off.. I'm still not finding many servers with people on them.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 08:21pm 20/11/15
If only there was some sort of technology that let's you see a servers before you job them. Something you can browse and sort by various criteria.
Khel
Posted 08:31pm 20/11/15
I don't think it needs a server browser, I think it just needs to be less broken and s***. Or they need to spin up more servers. Or both.
ctd
Posted 02:16pm 21/11/15
Apparently there is a workaround.
http://starwars.ea.com/starwars/battlefront/forums/discussion/10031/au-players-getting-only-us-servers-workaround

TLDR: use google DNS 8.8.8.8

Which is s***** cause I use my DNS for quota netflix etc.
TicMan
Posted 05:52pm 21/11/15
Yeah it's totally f***ed. I finally got on an AU server last night and ended up playing pretty well, back to US servers (or servers with > 150ms ping) today and I'm at the bottom of the scoreboard.
infi
Posted 06:40pm 21/11/15
I haven't bought it. I will wait for you gronks to sort it all out.
ctd
Posted 10:45am 22/11/15
I played on all AU servers yesterday after changing my DNS.
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