So you’ve decided that you’d like to setup a game hosting server so that you can your friends can play TF2 the way you want to play it. However, you’re not sure you could build your own server, so you’ve decided to find one through a third party game host. There are a lot of hosting providers out there, which means you’re going to have to choose from many. Not all of these providers are the same, either, and that means that some are going to be better than the others. If you’re not sure what to look for in a provider you might end up making a choice that might turn out badly for you in the end. If you’re keen on finding a provider that’ll work well for what you want, you need to understand what features are needed to make your gaming server great.
If you’ve played any kind of online multiplayer, you know just how important it is to be able to communicate with the people you’re playing with. Many game hosting providers offer voice servers along with game servers, which means you might be able to make a bundle purchase that will save you money. You shouldn’t just settle for any kind of voice chat that you’ve never heard of; you’re going to want to pick from the ones you’ve either used or know by reputation are decent. Three of the most commonly used are Ventrilo, Mumble, and Teamspeak. If a hosting provider offers voice servers with any of these three, it’s definitely worth checking out. Additionally, you should check to make sure that these voice servers are low latency and that you’re able to buy the amount of slots you need based on how many people you expect will be using your server. Slots are pretty affordable-some game hosting providers offer as many as 250 for as little as $50.
You don’t want to sign up for a server that’s somewhere in Europe, so always check to make sure that the provider has North American locations. Several is always going to be better than a few, so do your research beforehand. And the more locations they have, the better gaming networks they’re going to have as well, which is good news for you. You should also check to make sure that you’re able to choose which data center your server will be housed in-if you end up getting a server in a data center on the extreme other end of the continent, it could lead to some ping issues later on down the road.
Forums are great because they let you check the FAQ for solutions to any problems you might be having. Additionally, they provide you with a place to speak with the hosting provider’s staff about anything that concerns you about your server. The other reason why forums are so important is that they’ll let you connect with other users who have gaming servers who may have encountered the same problems you’re encountering. You can also find gamers interested in what you’re offering, which means you may be able to recruit some players to your own server.