If there’s one thing any gamer knows about having a great time participating in multiplayer, it’s that being able to communicate with other gamers is absolutely necessary. This is especially the case if the game in question offers up cooperative game play. A lot of gamers will choose to set up their own gaming servers with certain games in order to tweak the game so that it meets all their preferences, to ensure that the only people they’re playing with are the people they know are great players, or both. If you’ve thought about setting up a private server for you and your friends, you’ve probably considered most of the angles. But have you considered what to do about voice chat?
Check with the Hosting Provider
Unless you’re willing and able to set up your own server, maintain it on your own, and house it at your own home, you’re probably going to go through a hosting provider to set up your own private gaming server. While some of these providers focus only on offering up server hosting solutions, others go above and beyond by offering you access to voice servers as well. So before you go arranging group calls on Skype (which can be time-consuming, difficult, and prone to dropped calls), check with the provider first. If they offer voice servers for Ventrilo or Mumble, it’s definitely worth checking out. Most of the time these voice servers are relatively cheap. Being able to nab 100 slots for $21, for example, is a hell of a deal.
Check with Friends
If you’d rather not worry about the cost of voice servers on top of the cost of the gaming server itself, you may be able to find a workaround. Chances are that if you’ve reached this point you have a ton of gaming friends. Chances are also good that among these gaming friends there’s someone that’s got a voice chat server of their own. Speak to them about gaining access to their voice chat. They might offer it up for free or you might arrange to cover the monthly/yearly cost on your own in order to use it for your gaming server.
Maybe you and all your gaming friends own PlayStation 4s. Maybe you’re setting up a private server for PC gaming, but that doesn’t mean that your voice chat solution has to be PC compatible. You can make due just fine by making use of the PS4s party chat feature. This allows you to make a chat group of up to 8 people for an unlimited amount of time. Of course, there are obvious restrictions to this-if someone’s PC is in a different room from their PS4, for example, it won’t be possible.
If paying for or finding a useable voice chat server just isn’t an option right now, you can always make due with what you’ve got. Messengers like Skype offer an alternative, and while it won’t always be a reliable alternative, it’s better than not being able to communicate at all with the other players on your server.