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5.4 "virtual realms" (or server merges?)

observerobserver Houston, TXPosts: 3,013Member Uncommon

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/10158897/54_PTR_Coming_Soon-6_11_2013

New Feature: Virtual Realms
- Virtual Realms are sets of realms that are fused together, and will behave exactly as if they were one cohesive realm.

-Players on the same Virtual Realm will be able to join guilds, access a single Auction House, join arena teams and raids, as well run dungeons or group up to complete quests.

-Players belonging to the same Virtual Realm will have a (#) symbol next to their name.

 

Is this another way of merging servers, or merging the population?  Either way, it's a good idea.  Most server populations feel empty while leveling, which is to be expected with an 8 year old MMO.  I suppose cross-realm helped this, but now i wonder what will happen to server names? 

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Comments

  • ShadoedShadoed BirminghamPosts: 1,499Member Uncommon
    Could be quite interesting. I used to have all of my main characters on one server but i moved to another to join a particular guild and left the other characters behind, would be nice to have them within the same guild and be able to play them alongside my other characters now :)

    It must be Thursday, i never could get the hang of Thursdays.

  • jpnzjpnz SydneyPosts: 3,529Member

    If your server can now accomodate 2x players than before (due to tech), it makes sense to merge two servers.

    EVE is on one server so it'll be interesting if this is taken to that logical conclusion as well.

    One giant mega-server for WoW... that'll be the day I actually re-sub, just to say 'I was there'.

    Gdemami -
    Informing people about your thoughts and impressions is not a review, it's a blog.

  • expressoexpresso mePosts: 2,183Member Uncommon
    Proving sounds sound good, they're really knocking out the content recently/.
  • MajiinXMajiinX new hyde park, NYPosts: 89Member
    I can't express how happy I am about this. I am on an almost dead server and can't find anybody to do arena with and the auction house is very scarce hard to find buyers for things and most items up on the AH are retardedly expensive.
  • WhiteLanternWhiteLantern Nevada, MOPosts: 2,732Member Common

    Without knowing any more details than what are in this thread, I'm going to say this will be the "It's not a merge!" patch.

     

     

     

    Ya, sounds like a fancy way of merging to me.

    I want a mmorpg where people have gone through misery, have gone through school stuff and actually have had sex even. -sagil

  • Reion1Reion1 Brooklyn, NYPosts: 167Member
    Yup, sounds like blizzard is merging servers without exactly using the word, "merge." We saw this coming with their 10$ services sale. Looks like the ship is going down.

    "Everything the light touches is our kingdom" -- Mufasa
    ---

    image
  • ChromeBallzChromeBallz LeidenPosts: 287Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by jpnz
    If your server can now accomodate 2x players than before (due to tech), it makes sense to merge two servers.EVE is on one server so it'll be interesting if this is taken to that logical conclusion as well.One giant mega-server for WoW... that'll be the day I actually re-sub, just to say 'I was there'.

    EVE doesn't have instances though - There's only one 'copy' of any given place. With such a server merge you'd still have a massive amount of instances since the game world simply isn't designed to hold hundreds of thousands of people in the same spot.

    Playing: EVE, TERA, BDO
    Played (more than 1 month): WoW, GW2, L2, WAR, AoC, DnL, GW, LotRO, EQ2, TOR, CoH, STO, TSW
    Tried (trial, up to 1 month): EQ, UO, AO, EnB, TCoS, Fury, Ryzom, EU, DDO, TR, RF, CO, Aion, VG, DN, Vindictus

  • DeanGreyDeanGrey Fresno, CAPosts: 154Member
    I don't play WoW but I like the way they are handling this. Basically it is a feature that deals with population decline but also would be beneficial even if that were not the situation. I think all features like that. Band-aids don't add anything, this does.
  • gervaise1gervaise1 .Posts: 2,082Member Uncommon

    It's a merger - a flexibke merger for sure as Blizzard will be able to alter the groupings but a merger all the same.

    Will it work though?

    Hopefully it will make it easier to find a 3 (three!) player group for heroic scenarios but given how long the wait time can be in LFR ....

    Otherwise it sounds a lot like what Mythic did with DAoC when the population declined; they grouped servers but didn't "merge" them. Hopefully the (database) tech available today is powerful enough that the groups of servers will act like one. DAoC never quite pulled it off and the "groupings" were always seen as a bandaid. 

  • sportsfansportsfan BlankenbergePosts: 431Member

    Merging servers: player numbers are limited to the maximum capacity of each newly formed merged server.

    Virtual realms: player numbers is unlimited to the maximum capacity of a single server.

     

    ---

     

    The technique Blizzard is using is NOT new: you already had Battlegroups for PVP play in Battlegrounds in 2006.

    What IS new is that the regrouping of realms into virtual realms is combined/managed in the open world...

     

    So instead of playing with 3k-4K players on just one (full) (merged) server, you play with 30K or more at the same time.

    So how would they handle that MANY number of players?

    The new CRZ kicks in: real time open world play with players coming from different (grouped) servers can now be used to regroup these players ... and what most forgot ... to UNGROUP these players in zones that become too populated into different sections.

     

    With VR you assure ALL world zones of ALL 1-90 levels are populated and you have more than enough players (30K or more) to man all content all of the time.

    CRZ was just a testing of this new technique where they put players from different realms into the same world in real time (no loading screens).

     

    ---

     

    TLDR: Merging servers = old technique that didn't solve the pop problems for all offered content. Virtual servers = older technique mixed with NEW CRZ technique to populate ALL content ALL of the time within the GROUP of  clustered realms (servers).

    An MMORPG with this technical angle offers eternal populated worlds. The tric was to make it seamless across servers in open world zones.

    In the old merged server system you had to redo a merge every time again after X months or years, in virtual realms you just add servers to the already existent cluster (nobody needs to move anything).

     

     

     

     

  • DanitaKusorDanitaKusor AdelaidePosts: 549Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Reion1
    Yup, sounds like blizzard is merging servers without exactly using the word, "merge." We saw this coming with their 10$ services sale. Looks like the ship is going down.

    And their recent play free for 7 days offer for former subscribers. Will be interesting to see how many subscribers have been lost next time.

    The Enlightened take things Lightly

  • MukeMuke BredaPosts: 2,172Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by jpnz

    If your server can now accomodate 2x players than before (due to tech), it makes sense to merge two servers.

    EVE is on one server so it'll be interesting if this is taken to that logical conclusion as well.

    One giant mega-server for WoW... that'll be the day I actually re-sub, just to say 'I was there'.

    EVE is a giant servercluster connected to each other where everyone is in 1 world, think this WOW content is connecting just a small number of the servers to each other.

    Good to see though that they finally see the light. they have to with the decining numbers and less populated servers.

    You can have millions of players playing the same franchise, but the community takes a hit when they are all divided on servers with population limits for like 2-5k.

     

    "going into arguments with idiots is a lost cause, it requires you to stoop down to their level and you can't win"

  • sportsfansportsfan BlankenbergePosts: 431Member
    Originally posted by DanitaKusor
    Originally posted by Reion1
    Yup, sounds like blizzard is merging servers without exactly using the word, "merge." We saw this coming with their 10$ services sale. Looks like the ship is going down.

    And their recent play free for 7 days offer for former subscribers. Will be interesting to see how many subscribers have been lost next time.

    Still funny how people indulge themselves in the number of 8 million WOW SUBSCRIPTIONS and speak of a ship going down while the rest of the bunch have ZERO subscriptions ...

    Virtual realms is much better than any single server merge.

     

    But I guess in all your hate you will even deny that simple fact.

     

  • sportsfansportsfan BlankenbergePosts: 431Member
    Originally posted by Muke

     

    EVE is a giant servercluster connected to each other where everyone is in 1 world, think this WOW content is connecting just a small number of the servers to each other.

    Good to see though that they finally see the light. they have to with the decining numbers and less populated servers.

    You can have millions of players playing the same franchise, but the community takes a hit when they are all divided on servers with population limits for like 2-5k.

     

    Finally see the light ?

    Give me the name of another MMORPG where players of different realms can play seamless (grouped in real time) and without loading screens on the same open ended (background loading) world ?

    You can't.

    It is a brand new technology they introduced in 2012 and so now they made organised groups of these different realms to play together in that open world.

    Also: while EVE too works with a central server cluster, I think the achievement to do this in an MMO with REAL 3D landscapes is  a lot higher.

     

  • Laughing-manLaughing-man Dublin, OHPosts: 3,415Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Reion1
    Yup, sounds like blizzard is merging servers without exactly using the word, "merge." We saw this coming with their 10$ services sale. Looks like the ship is going down.

    Yep, they're in trouble!  They're only beating the next highest MMO by about 7 million players still.

    lol

  • sportsfansportsfan BlankenbergePosts: 431Member
    Originally posted by Laughing-man
    Originally posted by Reion1
    Yup, sounds like blizzard is merging servers without exactly using the word, "merge." We saw this coming with their 10$ services sale. Looks like the ship is going down.

    Yep, they're in trouble!  They're only beating the next highest MMO by about 7 million players still.

    lol

    Make that 7.7 million SUBSCRIPTIONS. Not counting EVE that would be 8.3 million subscriptions.

    Even http://mmodata.blogspot.be/ is lost in space with everything turning free to play these days.

    And don't be fooled: long term play in free to play MMO's means "the end".

    MMO's are much too costly to support f2p in the long run.

     

    This is an end of the subscription based MMO era, not the end of WOW.

  • MukeMuke BredaPosts: 2,172Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

    Also: while EVE too works with a central server cluster, I think the achievement to do this in an MMO with REAL 3D landscapes is  a lot higher.

     

    REAL 3d with a REAL bad outdated graphics engine while EVE tops the charts in beauty.

    Don't want to compare EVE too much with WOW as this can get real ugly real fast lol, but it's like comparing apples to oranges.

     

    But I like Blizzard's idea, now to invent that code to something bigger and in the end combine like all regional servers to each other. It's better then server merges imo.

     

    "going into arguments with idiots is a lost cause, it requires you to stoop down to their level and you can't win"

  • sportsfansportsfan BlankenbergePosts: 431Member
    Originally posted by Muke
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

    Also: while EVE too works with a central server cluster, I think the achievement to do this in an MMO with REAL 3D landscapes is  a lot higher.

     

    REAL 3d with a REAL bad outdated graphics engine while EVE tops the charts in beauty.

    Don't want to compare EVE too much with WOW as this can get real ugly real fast lol, but it's like comparing apples to oranges.

     

    But I like Blizzard's idea, now to invent that code to something bigger and in the end combine like all regional servers to each other. It's better then server merges imo.

     

    Curious that that "real bad outdated graphics engine" still tops the charts when fluidity and seamless background worlds is concerned. it is Always a laugh how EVE fanatics disdain everything with a landscape. Even in empty space the stuttering is staggering sometimes.

    You can only tune your engine that much as the "slowest part" of your system: ... Welcome internet.

    That's ONE of the (many) challenges WOW killers faced and kept unanswered over these past years: hence free to play.

    Another challenge was indeed too small servers which sentenced EACH new launch on death roll per single server.

    Problem solved now I guess.

  • MukeMuke BredaPosts: 2,172Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

    Curious that that "real bad outdated graphics engine" still tops the charts when fluidity and seamless background worlds is concerned. it is Always a laugh how EVE fanatics disdain everything with a landscape. Even in empty space the stuttering is staggering sometimes.

     

    'fluidity and seamless background worlds' because the game is very basic and low on pixels so it can run on a Pentium 1.

    It runs easier because it requires less.

    If your case is a benchmark I would forward PONG, it runs even smoother then WOW, boots faster too,  but that's not a MMO.

     

    as far as EVE concerns: with the 'empty space stuttering' it's your internet and hardware getting fried, with a good engine and fast internet it runs smoothless.

    I run a good system now, I can run full graphics and all brackets on ON and do not experience any lag whatsoever, untill you run into 1000 vs 1000 battles, but no game can handle that without reinforced hardware serverside.

     

     

    "going into arguments with idiots is a lost cause, it requires you to stoop down to their level and you can't win"

  • sportsfansportsfan BlankenbergePosts: 431Member
    Originally posted by Muke
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

    Curious that that "real bad outdated graphics engine" still tops the charts when fluidity and seamless background worlds is concerned. it is Always a laugh how EVE fanatics disdain everything with a landscape. Even in empty space the stuttering is staggering sometimes.

     

    'fluidity and seamless background worlds' because the game is very basic and low on pixels so it can run on a Pentium 1.

    It runs easier because it requires less.

    If your case is a benchmark I would forward PONG, it runs even smoother then WOW, boots faster too,  but that's not a MMO.

     

    as far as EVE concerns: with the 'empty space stuttering' it's your internet and hardware getting fried, with a good engine and fast internet it runs smoothless.

    I run a good system now, I can run full graphics and all brackets on ON and do not experience any lag whatsoever, untill you run into 1000 vs 1000 battles, but no game can handle that without reinforced hardware serverside.

     

     

    I'll take the challenge; I would call EVE the PONG of landscape based MMORPG's : empty as hell.

    The tric is to create the "illusion" of playing in a landscape based MMORPG with FLUID activity and combat.

    Guys like you were the reason some developpers opted to put (off line) Hi Res graphics into what SHOULD have been fluid on line games.

    Ohh how much they all failed in this respect. I still remember the Conan comment at launch: the game graphics are awesome ... until you want to ... move.

    That being said: the clustering of several realms is the best thing for ANY mmorpg to go on endlessly, but the only one having the technology to do this in a seamless background loading world is Blizzard.

    They even achieved it on a 9 year old Legacy system. Calling this "finally", is the same as stating someone found the Holy Grail (in a sense it does for MMO's because it stops the eternal merging of dying individual servers every year).

     

     

     

  • MukeMuke BredaPosts: 2,172Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

     

    They even achieved it on a 9 year old Legacy system.

     

    And with that we go back to point 1, fluent seamless worlds are no challenge on a basic aged engine.

    And if you experience stuttering in EVE outside of the massive blob battles, you really have

    a) bad internet

    b)a bad system

     

     

     

     

    "going into arguments with idiots is a lost cause, it requires you to stoop down to their level and you can't win"

  • expressoexpresso mePosts: 2,183Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Muke
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

     

    They even achieved it on a 9 year old Legacy system.

     

    And with that we go back to point 1, fluent seamless worlds are no challenge on a basic aged engine.

    And if you experience stuttering in EVE outside of the massive blob battles, you really have

    a) bad internet

    b)a bad system

     

     

     

     

    WoW has DX11 effects and a 64bit native client.  WoW is a much more advanced engine.

  • ThaneThane berlinPosts: 2,232Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by observer

    http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/10158897/54_PTR_Coming_Soon-6_11_2013

    New Feature: Virtual Realms
    - Virtual Realms are sets of realms that are fused together, and will behave exactly as if they were one cohesive realm.

    -Players on the same Virtual Realm will be able to join guilds, access a single Auction House, join arena teams and raids, as well run dungeons or group up to complete quests.

    -Players belonging to the same Virtual Realm will have a (#) symbol next to their name.

     

    Is this another way of merging servers, or merging the population?  Either way, it's a good idea.  Most server populations feel empty while leveling, which is to be expected with an 8 year old MMO.  I suppose cross-realm helped this, but now i wonder what will happen to server names? 

    i can only talk for my server, but the non CSZ's are actually quite crowded (see orgrimmar)

     

    i wouldn't call this a server merge, but rather the next step of their phasing/cross-server-zone technology.

    "I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!"

  • MukeMuke BredaPosts: 2,172Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by expresso
    Originally posted by Muke
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

     

    They even achieved it on a 9 year old Legacy system.

     

    And with that we go back to point 1, fluent seamless worlds are no challenge on a basic aged engine.

    And if you experience stuttering in EVE outside of the massive blob battles, you really have

    a) bad internet

    b)a bad system

     

     

     

     

    WoW has DX11 effects and a 64bit native client.  WoW is a much more advanced engine.

    It doesn't show then, they are not getting the most of their engine then. But I was just referring to the prior poster claiming that a different game was stuttering when in fact that particular engine shouldn't be the cause. :)

    "going into arguments with idiots is a lost cause, it requires you to stoop down to their level and you can't win"

  • expressoexpresso mePosts: 2,183Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Muke
    Originally posted by expresso
    Originally posted by Muke
    Originally posted by sportsfan

     

     

    They even achieved it on a 9 year old Legacy system.

     

    And with that we go back to point 1, fluent seamless worlds are no challenge on a basic aged engine.

    And if you experience stuttering in EVE outside of the massive blob battles, you really have

    a) bad internet

    b)a bad system

     

     

     

     

    WoW has DX11 effects and a 64bit native client.  WoW is a much more advanced engine.

    It doesn't show then.

    You should download the trial, crank the gfx to max (you will need a highend system to maintain 60FPS at 1080p)  make sure your in one of the newer zones and I think you'll be surprised at how much is going on.  Many people still remember wow looking as it did in vanlilla it has come a long way since then.

     

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