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Author Topic: The Complete GG2 Server Guide  (Read 2892 times)

Derpduck

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The Complete GG2 Server Guide
« on: April 07, 2018, 03:36:54 pm »

Since all of the previous stickies and guides were so outdated I decided to just go ahead and make a new one that includes just about everything. You can find the old stickies linked at the bottom of this post.
This thread should also be used to ask for help on all aspects of your server, I will most likely merge new threads into this one to stop other threads populating this board.

Part 1: Setting Up Your Server
Good settings are key to having a good server. The first thing you should to is open the game and click on the "Host Game" button, from there you change most of the options you need.

The first menu you come into has all the basic options, the are generally self explanatory:

Server Name: You will want to give your server a name to distinguish it from other servers.
Welcome Message: Players will whatever you put in here as an announcement when they join the server.
Password: Makes your server joinable only by knowing the password.

The next options are the main ones you want to focus on as these are the main ones that change how your server plays:

Player Limit: The number of players that can be in your server at any one time, this includes the host (unless using dedicated mode).
Recommended setting: 8-16 players. Generally around 12-14 is always good. GG2 is not made to be played with large amounts of players, while it may be fun, for some for the majority of players it isn't very fun so avoid anything too high.
Time Limit: How long each round lasts in minutes
Recommended setting: 10-15 minutes. Generally somewhere on the lower end between 10-12 minutes is preferred, but 15 minutes is acceptable. Anything more than this tends to make rounds drag on longer than they should.
Capture Limit: The number of caps needed to win a CTF round.
Recommended setting: 3-5 caps. Generally 4 is preferred, but any setting is acceptable, it simply depends on how long you want rounds to last and the maps you are hosting.
Deathmatch Kill Limit: The number of kills needed to win a round of team deathmatch.
Recommended setting: 30-50 kills. This mode is rarely played, if you aren't hosting any TDM maps you don't need to be concerned about this.
TDM Invulnerability (secs): How many seconds of invulnerability a player gets on spawning in TDM.
Recommended setting: 5 seconds. The default is fine, again you only need to be concerned about this if hosting TDM.
Respawn Time (secs): How long it takes for a player to respawn.
Recommended setting: 5-8 seconds. This is a big one that depends on how you want your server to play, generally 7 seconds plays well for well balanced gameplay. Having the setting too low can make the games just a bit unfun and make defending too easy, so I wouldn't recommend going below 5 seconds. Consider the number of players in your server when picking this setting.



Next, click on the "Advanced" tab:

Hosting Port: The connection port for your server, you only need to be concerned about this for port forwarding or if this port is already being used. Don't change this unless you know what you are doing.
Shuffle Map Rotation: Randomly shuffles your map rotation when you start the server.
This option has 3 different settings:
  • "Shuffle (no arena initial map)" - shuffles the rotation but will never have arena as the first map, this is to prevent the server from being sat on an arena map forever until more than 1 person joins, I would recommend this setting just to try to get people to join your server more easily.
  • "Shuffle without bias" - The same as above, but arena maps can be first.
  • "Don't shuffle" - Does not shuffle the rotation at all, allowing you to chose the order the maps are played in.
Note: It will only shuffle your rotation once, so after the rotation loops it will be in the same order until the server is launched again.
Auto Balance: Will balance out the teams if there are more players on one team than the other. Keep this on.
Announce To Lobby: Shows your server in the lobby. Keep this on unless you don't want people to be able to see your server in the lobby for some reason.
Attempt UPnP Forwarding: Automatic port forwarding option. This is highly recommended as it will save you the trouble of port forwarding, without doing so people will not be able to join your server. Some routers will not support UPnP forwarding though, so you will have to test it out yourself.



Next, click on the "Classlimits" tab:

Classlimits limit the number of players on each team that can play a certain class.
It is recommended to have some classlimits, however for a public server try to avoid limiting classes to 1 as it can be frustrating for some by either not being able to play what they want to or having one bad player locking out a class for everyone else, as well as limiting to 1 not making a big balance difference compared to being limited to 2.
Otherwise classlimits are mostly your personal preference, see what settings other servers are using to get an idea of what to use yourself, and consider the number of players on your server too.
Recommended setting: 2 for each. Generally this should prevent issues caused by lots of people picking one class and allow everyone to play what they want to.

Classes you may want to change the limits for due to causing problems at higher numbers are:
  • Heavy
  • Medic
  • Engineer
  • Spy

There are some settings it is recommended you change to improve performance of your server, so go back to the main menu and click "Options", then click on the "Engine" tab:

While these settings are still your preference, they can cause performance issues especially on lower end computers, which will be felt by every player on your server and make people not want to play on your server.
If you can play the game normally without any issues then you don't need to be concerned about these.
Particles: Change from "Normal" to "Alternative (faster"). Disabling them entirely is not needed as the performance benefits over alternative is negligible and just makes rockets harder to see. This will disable some other effects such as spinjumping particles and projectiles fading out.
Gibs: Change from "Full blood and gibs" to "Blood only" or "Blood and medium gibs" if your computer can handle it.
Full gibs can cause a large performance drop, so lower the setting when hosting. Blood only should have no issues for anything but the worst of computers, but disabling blood entirely will make it nearly impossible to tell if you have shot a cloaked spy so it is not recommended.
Framerate: This completely depends on your computer, however if you are not going to play on your own server at all then I would recommend using 30 FPS. If you have a good computer and can use 60 FPS without issues then it is fine to use it, however note that there are still some small bugs with it that can affect gameplay.
If you get any frame drops at all or struggle to maintain 60 FPS, then do not host with 60 FPS as the players will all have terrible lag.
If your computer can handle it, another option is to host on 30 FPS, then launch another instance of the game and play on your server with that game on 60 FPS.



Other settings:
There are some settings you cannot change from in-game, you can find them in the gg2.ini file in your GG2 folder:

In this file you can change all the previously mentioned settings and more.

When you first open it you should see this line near the top:

MultiClientLimit: The number of connections from 1 IP address that can be connected to your server at any one time. I would not recommend changing this unless you are having problems with people multi-clienting on your server.
Note that putting this down to 1 can affect people that disconnect and attempt to reconnect to the server quickly, or different people using the same connection that are actually different players.

Next, scroll down until you find "[Server]":

Dedicated: Automatically starts hosting a server when you launch the game. It also excludes the host from the number of players in the server.
Total bandwidth limit for map downloads in bytes per second: The upload speed of maps to player on your server. While the default is fine, I would recommend increasing this as it is still quite low and can result in long download times for maps. Don't change this if your internet is bad.
Recommended setting: 50000-200000 bytes.





Part 2: Map Rotation
The next thing you will want to set up is your map rotation. Bad maps alone can ruin the enjoyability of a server, while they are still your personal preference you should listen to feedback from players about your map rotation, especially when it comes to removing bad maps.

The default maps built into the game are generally acceptable, but some of them not that great to play on.
However, if you are fine with just using those maps you can change which maps you use under "[Maps]" in the gg2.ini file:

Change the numbers according to the order you want the maps to be played in, and change to 0 any that you don't want to be included in the rotation.

But really, we want to be using custom maps along with some of the defaults.
So, first you need to create a text file to store the list of maps in:
Right click, then click "New", then click "Text Document".

You can then give it any name you want, I would use "rotation":

It should have the ".txt" file extension on Windows (you will not be able to see it unless you change a setting in Windows, so don't be concerned if you can't).

Open up the file and simply add the names of the maps you want to host to the file. Each map must be on a new line, and the maps must be present in your "Maps" folder.
Here is an example of a map rotation file:

To exclude maps from the hosted rotation but still keep them in the file add a "#" in front of them as highlighted above.

Try to have at least 10+ maps and a variety of maps and game-modes.
However certain game-modes should be avoided due to unpopularity and being generally bad to play on:
  • Generator
  • Arena
  • DKoTH
  • ADCP (asymmetrical CP)

Try to avoid using too many very large or very small maps, and consider the number of players in your server when choosing your maps as some play better than others with lower or higher player limits.
See what maps other servers are hosting to get ideas for your own rotation, though you can find a (slightly old) list of decent maps for competitive play here: Standard PUG/Competitive Maps


Now that we have a rotation set up, we want to actually get GG2 to use it, open the "gg2.ini" file and find "[Server]":


Add the name of your rotation including the ".txt" file extension so it should look like this:


Save it, and now when you launch your server it should use this map rotation.





Part 3: Port Forwarding
First of all, before attempting any manual port forwarding you should try using the automatic UPnP port forwarding option mentioned earlier.
Go to "Host Game", then to the "Advanced" tab:

Change this option to "Yes" and try launching your server.
Ensure you also have "Announce To Lobby" enabled, otherwise it won't show up at all even if it did work.
If it has worked then players should be able to join your server and you can ignore the rest of this section.


You can check if the port forwarding has worked by going to the Lobby status page, wait at least 30 seconds before you check though as the lobby does not update instantly.

If this does not work for you then you will have to do the old method of manually forwarding your ports, which you will need access to your router's admin settings for:
NAGN's old Personal Port Fowarding Visual Guide is still applicable for this so you can follow that to learn how to port forward. This will be different for everyone depending on what router you have.

If you cannot get port forwarding to work then you can post for help in this thread. It is possible that you just won't be able to port forward though and be unable to host, especially if you are not the network administrator.

Something also worth noting is that if you are connected directly to a modem (not a router) then you do not need to port forward, as all of your ports will be open. However this leaves your computer and network highly vulnerable to attacks so be warned.





Part 4: Mods And Plugins
Mods and plugins can be used to enhance your server with many useful features, but generally any big changes will turn players away. As such I will only focus on the more standard ones.

Mods
Plugins / Client-side plugins list
Server-sent Plugins


Vanilla Hosting Mods:
To use mods just download the mod from its thread. Mods are a separate instance from the normal version of the game so you will want to put your maps and settings in the mod's folder, or move the mod's executable to your normal GG2 folder.

DSM
If you want to host a server with some level of control over it then use this. Adds console, admin tools such as kicking, banning, RCON, commands to change various settings while in-game, extra server settings, and more.

Non-Vanilla Hosting Mods:
While difficult to get enough players for these types of mods can be quite fun to play occassionally. I've listed some of the most popular mods out there.

INSmod
Adds loads of fun new characters to the game for smash bros. style gameplay.

Randomizer Mod
Adds alternate, secondary and melee weapons to all classes.


Plugins:
To use plugins just save the .gml file from the thread to your "Plugins" folder. Some plugins will affect the gameplay of your server, others will not.



FreezeTime
Prevents players from leaving the spawn for 10 seconds to make sure everyone has loaded and has a fair chance to leave the spawn at the same time.

Random Map Generator
Generates random unique KoTH maps out of pre-made sections of maps.


Server-Sent Plugins:
Server sent plugins let clients to download the same plugins as the server, allowing for significant modification on both the server and client's end while still running on the normal game which is much more convenient than downloading a mod.

To find server-sent plugins to use go to this page: Server Sent Plugins

To use a server-sent plugin open your "gg2.ini" file and find these lines:

ServerPluginList: The list of all server-sent plugins your server uses, separated by commas.
ServerPluginsRequired: This setting determines if players have to download the plugins to connect to the server or if they are asked if they want to. Turn this on only with most plugins that change gameplay or need assets such as sprites. Turn it off when only using plugins such as chat or anything that clients don't need to download.

Example:


Recommended server-sent plugins: chat_v2





Part 5: Making A Server Thread
Now that you have set up your server you will want to create a thread so people can know about it and discuss it.

Things you should include in your thread:
  • Brief description of your server
  • Location
  • Player limit
  • Time limit
  • Respawn time
  • Capture limit
  • Map rotation
  • Classlimits
  • Mods and plugins
  • Password (when applicable, if you want only forumers to be able to join at times put the password in spoilers)
  • Rules
  • Speedtest





Old stickies:
Personal Port Fowarding Visual Guide
Steve's Detailed Guide to Servers (All things needed for a successful host!)
Server Template: What you should have in your topic
(VERY OLD) Everything about Hosting!
« Last Edit: April 08, 2018, 06:21:25 am by Derpduck [LORD] »
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Derpduck

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Re: The Complete GG2 Server Guide
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2018, 03:38:38 pm »

I unstickied some of the old threads and made this much more up-to-date and complete one. If you have any questions about servers please post them in here and not in a new thread.

PrOF

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Re: The Complete GG2 Server Guide
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2018, 02:34:11 am »

Hey, we needed this. However from my experience UpNp does not automatically open all your ports, only the one needed. I use a FritzBox router connected via ethernet cable, so I first had to enable it in the settings, then when I want to host I'll only open the 8190 port
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Derpduck

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Re: The Complete GG2 Server Guide
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2018, 06:06:50 am »

I never said it does that, I will rearrange that part for clarity.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2018, 06:09:49 am by Derpduck [LORD] »
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Azureus

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Re: The Complete GG2 Server Guide
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2018, 11:59:28 am »

Thank You
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