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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Patch 88 success, EU network packet loss spikes last night, Premium Re-Ups for Only $7.99 and New items on sale shortly

Today we continue the "blog of full disclosure"

Patch 88 release successful
Last night PST / morning EU time we released patch 88 which performed a lot of minor tweaks to the game. The patch launch went well, and we saw quite an uptick of players after the patch. In fact - we ended up setting a record in EU today with tens of thousands of players logging in to Open Beta simultaneously from Europe alone. The game has been growing at a rate of 50% per day globally for the past 5 days, though we expect that pace of growth to taper off rather soon.

Packet Loss on Europe 1 & 2 networking equipment last night
That giant Open Beta turnout wave caused some unexpected network behavior during EU peak times yesterday. The servers were unaffected (since they scale horizontally and new districts will just start firing up), but we did run in to an unexpected problem with our main network edge devices that caused sudden severe packet loss conditions in Europe, even though the devices were in theory running at only 10% of capacity. 

The result was that between 16:00 and 22:00 CEST on the networking gear connected to Europe-1 and 2 (ie Patriot and Obeya) we saw several sporadic but big spikes of up to 40% packet loss during those hours. 

Inside the game those packet loss episodes manifested themselves as severe rubber-banding, even though ping time and server load would actually remain very low (however, you would be able to see the packet loss conditions if you happened to use the test ping IP we provided on the Forums).

We are working closely with the manufacturer of the networking gear overnight to see if they can resolve the issue before tomorrow's peak time. They are potentially able to provide a fix and if it can be confirmed, I will post the information here as an update to this post.

US-East and US-West did not experience the same issue, partly because those locations have of course been split between two different physical datacenters and in effect have double the amount of networking gear infront of the game servers at each location.

Again, we hope this issue will be resolved very swiftly, but keep in mind this type of testing is what Open Beta is all about - to test the crap out of all the equipment at full throttle. So, while we apologize for the un-fun experience in Europe during that time window, we hope people continue logging in and playing since that will help us troubleshoot the problem in much more detail tomorrow night.

New Items on Sale Tomorrow
This week we are going to start posting a lot of cool new items in the store, and we are going to start introducing some permanent items as well on a rolling schedule. We will announce the new items on Facebook tomorrow so stay tuned (or simply log in to the Armas Marketplace when we launch the items).

Renewal of Premiums during Beta - only $7.99 USD (£4.99 GBP / €5.99 EUR) !
So in the next two days our first batch of Premium Players are going to get reminder emails that their first 30 days are almost up. As we have said before - during the Beta period the cost of premium is only $9.99 for all of the cool premium benefits that let you vastly accelerate your progression and item drops, and gives you complete artistic freedom when you design your characters plus a whole range of other benefits including a 20% item purchase discount. 

Thanks to this discount when Premium Players re-up (adds 30 additional premium days) before the end of his/her premium period, those premium extensions get an automatic 20% off (!) off the Beta $9.99 price. 

The result is that premium renewals are only $7.99 in the US, £4.99 in the UK and €5.99 in Europe. And - any benefits that you accrue, including standing, achievements, customizations, permanent items or permanent weapons you buy during Open Beta carry over to the live production launch of the game as well.

And finally - a big thanks for Open Beta testing our game!
And a final word to everyone trying the game out; a really big THANKS for Open Beta testing our game (and liking us on Facebook!). 

While we will try to keep the game as near production quality as possible at all times during OB, there will of course be some hiccups along the way, and that's expected at this stage of Beta. But we are working around the clock (litterally) to ensure the best possible "near production" experience along the way. In the next days and weeks we will continue performing network updates, traffic improvements, game tweaks etc., while also working on the major upcoming changes that we expect to launch before the big formal release of the game!

Happy Testing!

61 comments:

  1. pls allow xfire broadcasting,i beg u cmon :P

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  2. Ye good job, but cheater, they are farging ruining the game, they are almost everywhere, really every 2nd opposition has at least one cheater, yea thats me gold skill player

    I wish you announced what did you do lately to prevent cheating rather than reading "oh we got new items in armas, Go check them out"

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  3. @niipazzo

    I did note some of that in yesterday's blog (that in fact we ARE catching most cheaters, and we will be moving to a naming-and-shaming system sometime soon). More details to come. Part of the reason we don't discuss a lot of details of what we do is simply we also don't want to make life easier for aimbotters as well.

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  4. What about accounts being blocked, for being underage (even when they aren't), that has spent $$ we basicly just spent cash on a game that we can't play at all.

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  5. no comment niipazzolowboi, why you play with PDV and the other ladyboiis??? you hate cheater? omg lowbob...

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  6. @mph86
    hey tough guy tell me your nickname if you play on obeya, i'll show you ladyboiis and my cheats

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  7. niipazzo you should get a life

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  8. @Ulrik

    why do you say that? are you jealous?

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  9. Considering your ingame rating and the rate you got it, definetly not. Freak.

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  10. @Bjorn

    Can you give us an update on the status of Patriot server?

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  11. I love the new thing in the game, thanks to the patch :
    I die, my computer crash.

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  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  13. So wait hot much longer will the Patriot be down?

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  14. So G1 is seriously going to go with $14.99 after beta is over? I can't claim to know what the future holds for APB under G1.. but I CAN say -with certainty- You wont see another dime -from me- if you keep premium accounts at $14.99

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  15. I wanted to go premium but after that-HELL NO!

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  16. agreed with Regnaw, till that time ill have both my chars at max progression :D
    and you earn enough money with regular account + selling upgrades on market

    but still there would be some other interesting items in armas :)

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  17. Lol niipazzo owned himself and then deleted comment.

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  18. I would just like to thank you soooo much for opening the floodgates on the download speeds, it was rather nice updating at 2MB/s today.

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  19. hoping us closed beta foo's still get our goody pack in a week :D can you confirm this Bjorn?

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  20. Well since the so called "improvements" to matchmaking, I've been getting nothing but unbalanced missions. It used to be we'd be outnumbered by ONE, which was hard but manageable, now our teams are being outnumbered by TWO. Since the last patch I've been having many 4v6, 3v5, 1v3 ect.

    Look, I understand you are trying to balance the threats, but ONE extra pair of eyes and and gun makes all the difference. TWO extra people on opposition makes the mission basically impossible to win.

    Just because someone is GOLD threat doesn't mean they should be put against a HORDE of people.

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  21. This problem wasnt first seen yesterday... we had this problem at may, 24. and 25. on the primetimes.

    what is with the strange routes? from germany over amsterdam, london, back to amsterdam and then to germany will result in an not necessary higher ping, that is in fact producing more ping and traffic, when you will solve that?

    to the cheater problem: why you let banned people back in? (names only per direct contact, i dont want to shame anyone open) but a small hint: only one letter of his name change...

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  22. @Bjorn

    Is something broken with the matchmaking? We are not getting dispatchs as groups of 2 or 4. We tried changing districts but still getting dispatchs once in every 5-6 missions. It so boring this way.

    Please fix this cause doing only 1 opposed mission in half an hour aint no fun.

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  23. @Bjorn

    I have a clan with close to 100 people who are slowly installing your game and loving it we are on the Joker server and we honestly just would like a ETA on the Chaos Servers will they come out before release? They will really give our clan a way to get out and represent our brotherhood (we are enforcers) So please it would be awesome if you could respond Bjorn
    (A dev answer like "Look out for them in open beta would be so appreciated or even a est amount of weeks!PLEASE)
    Thank you so much for reading! =)

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  24. "Permanent weapons"? What permanent weapons?

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  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. care of that , cheat http://www.jeuxvideo.com/forums/1-25693-6938-1-0-1-0-marre-de-crever-envie-de-devenir-pro.htm

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  27. 40 percent package loss?, well that explains my horrible driving yesterday

    Kaku

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  28. @Bjorn


    I really enjoy apb, I really did until your patch yesterday. After a full night of reinstalling and getting error on the download I get the game install and log on today. Well I figure I would wait and see if I get the same old 20 seconds log on to zone and then the dc. Well I didn't so I played for about an hour or so then log out of the game.

    So time went by and I took a shower, got a bite to eat and figure hey I'll go back and play apb since I'm off today and didn't get to play yesterday at all. So when I log back online just to get the same 20 seconds into the zone just to get dc. But I notice something about this log in from the first, I didn't have the little audio ad playing in the 2nd one like I did the first.

    I'm all for you guys making money, hell I know you make a lot by putting Verizon and whatever the one add was in the game. But if it going to keep forcing me or other people to DC then you need to fix this crap now. Or if not give me a refund on the cash I spent for g1 credits. I do not nor will I ever have a desire to play any of the other games you offer. I only came for apb.

    Thank you

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  29. love the fast respond on your patching ,and updateing us that you know of the server/lag problems and what you think might be the problem .just lovely realy hope you can get the lantency down to normal (around 50 for me ) thinking about getting a new grafic card just for apb so i can record hte game in HD ,but if there is going to lantency over a 100 might just aswell not ,and if the load is to big and G1 dont have the money for better server well im out .
    but i belive in G1 :D

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  30. I sure hope one of those new items will be the O-PGL! Demoman needs his grenade launcher he does!

    Keep up the good work, G1.

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  31. Hi

    the lags are still there...
    they're starting right now, as I speak.

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  32. @bjorn
    ADMINS are cheating

    http://youtu.be/J2Nk5TbB4kg

    nice ! very nice ! g1 admins and play with admin commands ! invisible gamemaster at win all mission !

    Does not it embarrassing? Many hackers and now begin the admins to cheat at.
    If someone opens a thread is deleted and the user banned!
    Very adult!

    Good thing I have not had to play against him. But yes the video shows it all. Say something very quickly around in the community. If you take a look at least apologize.
    Very embarrassing!

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  33. Its funny how you always run into hackers.. i have been playing closed beta for about 3 weeks now. and i have encountered cheaters about.... 5 times or something.. maybe your just bad? have you thought about that? :D

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  34. @EzioDK
    It's funny how i never run into hackers... I've been playing closed and open beta for long months now, and i have never encountered a cheater... 0 times or something.. maybe they just do their job? They surely thought about that..

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  35. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  36. @zcala
    Why would that be a admin?

    @EzioDK
    I agree, people just getting owned by skilled players and call them cheaters, but cheaters do exist and they are rare.

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  37. In regard to the invisible player as zcala pointed out, read these two threads:
    http://forums.gamersfirst.com/index.php?showtopic=164565
    http://forums.gamersfirst.com/index.php?showtopic=159946

    As "embarrassing" as it may be for G1, it's most likely with good intentions. This is a great way to catch cheaters and deal with them swiftly, no need to report and wait for action to be taken. I approve of Blackbeard's method.

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  38. He post this....

    "*BlackBeard*
    Admins are active..."

    ... and closed the thread


    How do the admins now have what they want.
    The game is getting embarrassing!

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  39. Waitting for the packet loos to be fixed.

    You made our ms grow up with the latest network update to europe servers and now this.

    Game isnt playble at all at peek times right now.

    Even though the devices were in theory running at only 10% of capacity.KK i imagine what will happen when they will run at 50-70%

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  40. US West (Los Angeles): 173.195.32.254
    US East (Washington DC): 173.195.39.254
    Europe (Frankfurt): 173.195.41.254

    Is this information correct? Because I live in Europe, and I have a better ping with the server located in Washington DC than with the one in Frankfurt. And the one located in LA is just slightly worst. It's ridiculous.

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  41. your prices are too expensive, for $9.99 players are not getting enough. for that price we should be able to get all weapons permanently. the fact that we only get some extra customization options and a store discount is completely ridiculous. Stop being a buncha greedy money grubbers, you dont need to be charging that much to pay your salaries and keep the game running.

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  42. You can make $9.99 and then some working for two hours at minimum wage in any state in the US. If you can't manage to work 2 hours every 30 days then you have bigger problems to work out.

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  43. "And - any benefits that you accrue, including standing, achievements, customizations, permanent items or permanent weapons you buy during Open Beta carry over to the live production launch of the game as well."

    The way this is worded, seems to say that those of us without premium will be facing a total reset come live production launch?

    As someone that has restored his RTW character, that would be pretty much a huge slap in the face.

    So I'm hoping that I'm just reading that wrong. But I'd like to know for sure, before I go buying a PSG or long term weapons.

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  44. They have made it clear that they will not be wiping characters any time soon or later unless a massive change is made to the game. I believe he only included that bit to make it clear to players that they will be able to keep everything they have received or earned, since some people still have doubts.

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  45. Why do I have to wait in a fucking queue?
    10mins of waiting and still not in....

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  46. Nice idea the queue.

    Although the Premiums shouldn't have to wait...

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  47. @H-Bomb Explosion

    Check my message in last post and tell me about unbalanced matches. Today we had 2vs7 and couldnt call backup. Seriously, what is going on?

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  48. WTF Nice idea??

    been waiting 30mins now....

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  49. GET RID OF VOIP COMMERCIALS!!! HOLY FUCK!!! GET OUTTA MY HEAD CHARLES!!!!

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  50. We appreciate the update, you guys are doing great.

    Still a few lag spikes, and delay'd response time while driving every now and than but I'm sure you guys are already on it. Keep it up!

    -
    Baked

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  51. Need to fix the server lag. That's the only thing that needds to be done. After that, make this game actually free to play. We have rent weapons, we have extrememly limited customization on vehicles, etc. I mean, come on. Otherwise it might as well be pay to play, and that will destroy this game once again. Just stating the obvious. -- Loyal Fan

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  52. Thanks so much for all your hard work! I played in the RTW Beta/Launch, and was sad to see things end so quickly. But here you are, GamersFirst, proving everyone wrong! I always knew this game could be amazing if done well.

    Am excited to see the new content/items added in the future, and wish you all success. :)

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  53. I honestly can't stress how thankful I and many other people appreciate your hard work in creating and maintaining such a great game.

    I wish you the best of luck in the future and can't wait to see how much will be added/changed when the game is finally released. Hopefully content for F2P and P2P will continue to stay fairly balanced as it would be sad to see large amounts of P2P players with the upper hand in combat :(

    Again thank you for your hard work. Peace.

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  54. hey anunorgininalname, why don't you shut the f up you snot nose little bastard? some of us have to spend our money on rent, kids and a wife, instead of pissing it away on a game who barely gives you anything for 10 bucks a month. I work and go to school at the same time you little patronizing prick, I dont have disposable income to piss away like someone who has no life like you do.

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  55. @ 36a68964-857d-11e0-8a65-000bcdcb2996

    I'm sorry you feel that way, but if I have a "disposable income" and you don't despite having a job then it's hard to say I don't have a life. Ask your boss for a raise, don't get mad at people with more cash than you. They do exist.

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  56. Any chance it'll ever be possible to buy permanent Premium for, say, triple or quadruple price? I'd be willing to pay for that, but I hate having to "subscribe" to something.

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  57. i love this game!!great work!!

    what can i do for buy premium account from the web?

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