A small appeal re: phasing

General Discussion
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08/08/2017 04:14 PMPosted by Ornyx
Over the last couple of years, we've begun using some new technology we've occasionally referred to as "sharding" in non-instanced zones, which separates players in high-traffic areas out into separate "shards" of a particular zone. The benefit to our server performance has been massive - it was a huge part of why Legion's launch went so smoothly - and so, as a whole, we've been very happy with the system.

The one exception has been on RP realms, where player-run events are much more common. On RP realms, we believe that the overall loss to game performance is worth it in order to support those events. If players on RP realms choose to organize an event and congregate somewhere, and have a laggy experience as a result, that's their choice, and we'd like to allow them as much freedom to do so as possible.

So, we've recently applied a hotfix that should disable realm sharding in the vast majority of the outdoor world on RP realms. That includes Kalimdor, the Eastern Kingdoms, Northrend, Pandaria, Outland, Draenor, and all related sub-zones. This has actually been our intention for some time now, but as part of investigating some reports involving a player-run event in Northrend, we discovered some secondary issues that were causing it not to function properly.

There are still limits, of course; we don't want playing on an RP realm to mean you can't properly experience core game content due to low FPS or heavy input lag. As such, all Legion zones (including all of the Broken Isles, the Broken Isles version of Dalaran, and soon, Argus) will still have sharding active, as they do on non-RP realms. Similarly, when the game itself points players toward a specific area of the non-Legion world (such as for a holiday event or new patch content), we may temporarily re-enable sharding in that area until things settle down.

In general, however, our goal is to follow the general rule of thumb that RP realms do not shard, except in current-expansion zones, or when temporarily necessary to support gameplay. This should now be the case on all RP and RP-PvP realms worldwide. This is in addition to our existing rule that RP realms do not automatically fill areas using our Cross-Realm Zones system (although you can still enter an RP realm using CRZ if you're grouped with a player on an RP realm).

Thanks for all your patience while we implemented the hotfix on this, and awesome job on the Tournament of Ages, guys! :)


This is great news for RP realms. But even in the downtime like this where new content that has been launched has simmered down, is it truly impossible to remove phasing across the board without risking a crash?
08/08/2017 04:17 PMPosted by Farora
Wait...so RP realms have no CRZ?

>.>

/slowlyedgestowardsrerollbutton


So If I wanted to Farm the TLPD I would have a better chance on a RP realm now?
08/08/2017 04:17 PMPosted by Farora
Wait...so RP realms have no CRZ?

>.>

/slowlyedgestowardsrerollbutton


It's not just about population. Another reason is naming.

When I first started out on an RP realms back in TBC, it was actually a reportable offense to be using a non-RP name. If you picked a name that didn't fit with the fantasy genre, people would report it and you'd get a forced rename.

If you're trying to hold a role play wedding, you really don't want to be interrupted by people strolling through named "Bigthugg" and "Pwnnoobz".

I highly doubt these rules still apply or are even enforced, but with the way the automated report system works, I suppose if enough people were unhappy with your name choice it could still get flagged.

But not breaking immersion with non-RP names is one of the reason that RP realms CRZ with other RP realms and not the general ones with their 1000s of extended ASCII naming puns.
Lemme also ask if you're still reading Ornyx. With the removal of phasing in the old world, is it possible to bring back World Defense just for those zones?
08/08/2017 04:14 PMPosted by Ornyx
Over the last couple of years, we've begun using some new technology we've occasionally referred to as "sharding" in non-instanced zones, which separates players in high-traffic areas out into separate "shards" of a particular zone. The benefit to our server performance has been massive - it was a huge part of why Legion's launch went so smoothly - and so, as a whole, we've been very happy with the system.

The one exception has been on RP realms, where player-run events are much more common. On RP realms, we believe that the overall loss to game performance is worth it in order to support those events. If players on RP realms choose to organize an event and congregate somewhere, and have a laggy experience as a result, that's their choice, and we'd like to allow them as much freedom to do so as possible.

So, we've recently applied a hotfix that should disable realm sharding in the vast majority of the outdoor world on RP realms. That includes Kalimdor, the Eastern Kingdoms, Northrend, Pandaria, Outland, Draenor, and all related sub-zones. This has actually been our intention for some time now, but as part of investigating some reports involving a player-run event in Northrend, we discovered some secondary issues that were causing it not to function properly.

There are still limits, of course; we don't want playing on an RP realm to mean you can't properly experience core game content due to low FPS or heavy input lag. As such, all Legion zones (including all of the Broken Isles, the Broken Isles version of Dalaran, and soon, Argus) will still have sharding active, as they do on non-RP realms. Similarly, when the game itself points players toward a specific area of the non-Legion world (such as for a holiday event or new patch content), we may temporarily re-enable sharding in that area until things settle down.

In general, however, our goal is to follow the general rule of thumb that RP realms do not shard, except in current-expansion zones, or when temporarily necessary to support gameplay. This should now be the case on all RP and RP-PvP realms worldwide. This is in addition to our existing rule that RP realms do not automatically fill areas using our Cross-Realm Zones system (although you can still enter an RP realm using CRZ if you're grouped with a player on an RP realm).

Thanks for all your patience while we implemented the hotfix on this, and awesome job on the Tournament of Ages, guys! :)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xk8mm1Qmt-Y
https://twitter.com/WarcraftDevs/status/894627400465604608

I thought they fixed this? Sigh Blizz..
08/08/2017 04:41 PMPosted by Karosong
What about cities ?
No, capital cities should not shard, with the exception of Dalaran above the Broken Isles as mentioned in my post.

If you are seeing issues with this for some reason, please let us know!
08/08/2017 05:04 PMPosted by Ornyx
08/08/2017 04:41 PMPosted by Karosong
What about cities ?
No, capital cities should not shard, with the exception of Dalaran above the Broken Isles as mentioned in my post.


Thanks fam

Edit - will do
08/08/2017 05:04 PMPosted by Ornyx
08/08/2017 04:41 PMPosted by Karosong
What about cities ?
No, capital cities should not shard, with the exception of Dalaran above the Broken Isles as mentioned in my post.

If you are seeing issues with this for some reason, please let us know!


Ornyx. On Wyrmrest Accord in Stormwind, Sharding does still seem to be an issue.

I've tested it MANY times, and a lot of times I can't see my own alt sitting in the same spot as my main (When my second account was active).

And while it may not have as much RP or many events, Dalaran (Broken Isles) still does have RP, and a lot of times I'm disconnected from my guild and end up having to be invited to a group because of it.

Can we please just eliminate sharding all together for RP realms? It's quite annoying to know that on one shard there's open RP, but you can't join in unless you ask to be invited to a group =/
08/08/2017 04:14 PMPosted by Ornyx
So, we've recently applied a hotfix that should disable realm sharding in the vast majority of the outdoor world on RP realms.


Thank you so very much. We, of the RP realms, appreciate it a lot.
<span class="truncated">...</span>No, capital cities should not shard, with the exception of Dalaran above the Broken Isles as mentioned in my post.

If you are seeing issues with this for some reason, please let us know!


Ornyx. On Wyrmrest Accord in Stormwind, Sharding does still seem to be an issue.

I've tested it MANY times, and a lot of times I can't see my own alt sitting in the same spot as my main (When my second account was active).

And while it may not have as much RP or many events, Dalaran (Broken Isles) still does have RP, and a lot of times I'm disconnected from my guild and end up having to be invited to a group because of it.

Can we please just eliminate sharding all together for RP realms? It's quite annoying to know that on one shard there's open RP, but you can't join in unless you ask to be invited to a group =/
The hotfix mentioned was applied yesterday evening and currently appears to be functioning properly. I would ask that you check this again, as I'm not seeing any issues on the couple of servers I personally checked.

We have no plans to eliminate sharing systems for Legion content at this time, as mentioned in my earlier post. Legion is considered core and current gameplay, and the last thing we want to see is latency or FPS issues affecting players who are trying to complete current content. As current content moves away from current zones, whether that be in a patch or expansion, we will review feedback on those zones on a case-by-case basis as the need arises.

08/08/2017 04:59 PMPosted by Jalën
Lemme also ask if you're still reading Ornyx. With the removal of phasing in the old world, is it possible to bring back World Defense just for those zones?
I don't have anything to add on this, unfortunately. From my understanding the system that supported World Defense was deprecated and I'm sure what the timeline may be to see its return. I'm aware of Holinka's recent words on this, but I am not aware of any current status of the project. Let's keep this thread on-topic though. :)
08/08/2017 05:10 PMPosted by Ornyx
I don't have anything to add on this, unfortunately. From my understanding the system that supported World Defense was deprecated and I'm sure what the timeline may be to see its return. Let's keep this thread on-topic though. :)


I don't really believe that this is completely off topic. Like stated before on RP realms with PvP, one of the biggest reasons as to why the World Defense Channel was removed was because of the phasing technology that was implemented. But now seeing that it was removed in the old world, I wanted to ask if there was a possibility of it making a return.

As to the point of it very unlikely returning, I thought it was said during Holinkas Q&A that while there's no delivery date, there will be an effort to making it return in the future for roleplayers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PzIRVeXcd6A&feature=youtu.be&t=3181

I'm aware that he doesn't work for WoW PvP any longer, this statement came from the PvP Lead of World of Warcraft. So it leaves me in confusion.
I don't have anything to add on this, unfortunately. From my understanding the system that supported World Defense was deprecated and I'm sure what the timeline may be to see its return. Let's keep this thread on-topic though. :)


REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
08/08/2017 05:21 PMPosted by Jalën
I don't have anything to add on this, unfortunately. From my understanding the system that supported World Defense was deprecated and we are very unlikely to see its return at this point. Let's keep this thread on-topic though. :)


I don't really believe that this is completely off topic. Like stated before on RP realms with PvP, one of the biggest reasons as to why the World Defense Channel was removed was because of the phasing technology that was implemented. But now seeing that it was removed in the old world, I wanted to ask if there was a possibility of it making a return.

As to the point of it very unlikely returning, I thought it was said during Holinkas Q&A that while there's no delivery date, there will be an effort to making it return in the future for roleplayers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PzIRVeXcd6A&feature=youtu.be&t=3181

I'm aware that he doesn't work for WoW PvP any longer, this statement came from the PvP Lead of World of Warcraft. So it leaves me in confusion.
Apologies, I think my wording may have caused some confusion - i meant 'at this point' as in, in the current scope of things I'm not sure we are likely to see its imminent return. I updated the wording on my post to be more clear. Again, I don't have updates on where that project is or as to the status of it at all.

While I understand your point that World Defense was removed because of phasing, it's really a side discussion that should be held on its own, separate from this. Again, let's keep discussion here directed at the changes we made to phasing yesterday to support the on-going efforts of the RP community.
08/08/2017 05:27 PMPosted by Ornyx
Apologies, I think my wording may have caused some confusion - i meant 'at this point' as in, in the current scope of things I'm not sure we are likely to see its imminent return. I updated the wording on my post to be more clear. Again, I don't have updates on where that project is or as to the status of it at all.


Right and I hope I'm not trying to come across that I'm looking for its return by tomorrow. I understand that I have a lack of knowledge on how it works and something like this takes time.

Thanks for the post though! I appreciate the feedback on the matter.

08/08/2017 05:27 PMPosted by Ornyx
While I understand your point that World Defense was removed because of phasing, it's really a side discussion that should be held on its own, separate from this. Again, let's keep discussion here directed at the changes we made to phasing yesterday to support the on-going efforts of the RP community.


Will do. I'm really happy with the news. I believe it's one step forward for the RP community.
So are major RP-PvP events possible again? With their glorious server lag and and being one shot and everything?

Asking for a friend who likes to build roads with the bones of his enemies.
Blue posts can't be liked - so I am just going to type +1.

+1
Hello, Ornyx! Thank you for the response.

It's great to hear that these changes have been made and hope Blizzard keeps listening to their community like this.

You should come check out the tournament yourself at some point :D
I am glad to hear this.

I will say though, that sharding isn't the way to go, on any server.

While the tech might be a useful crutch, its exactly that, a crutch.

Rather, maybe a broader scale of world game design might be the way to go, to disperse the population, as you said, there are many things that funnel players into sharing the same play space to the point where they have to be phased and sharded, there are many simple systems you could implement, or even re-implement, or maybe even broaden the scale of your quests, WQs are pretty much concentrated within 200 yrds, maybe broaden them to have packs of mobs and materials spread throughout the entire zone instead?

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