PC Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer change incites uproar

Infinity Ward community manager Robert Bowling explains new IWNet matchmaking service, which drops dedicated servers for streamlined experience.

Infinity Ward has seemingly been able to do no wrong in the lead-up to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2's highly anticipated November 10 launch on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. The game has for several months been the most preordered title in Activision's history, and analysts have floated lofty sales expectations of more than 11 million units worldwide by the end of the year.

Speaking of a firefight...

Be that as it may, the developer did catch some flak over the weekend, after revealing on the Call of Duty-centric Bash and Slash podcast that the PC edition of the game would see dramatic changes to its online multiplayer component. Namely, community manager Robert "FourZeroTwo" Bowling took the lid off of IWNet, a new matchmaking service that eschews player-run dedicated servers in favor of a more structured and streamlined multiplayer experience.

Bowling's announcement was met with a swift, vitriolic reaction from the PC player base, prompting an online petition that has thus far accrued in excess of 128,000 signatures. Now, Bowling has moved to assuage fears for the PC multiplayer experience by way of a detailed rundown on his personal blog of what players can expect from the new IWNet matchmaking service.

Explaining the situation at the outset, Bowling noted that "the news, by default, means no more browsing through a server list for a server with the settings/ping you want among other things, and sent shockwaves through the hardcore PC community, leading to many more questions than answers as to 'HOW' this would work, and if it would really be better for the PC community as a whole."

As for that "how," Bowling said, "IWNet takes the benefits of dedicated servers and allows them to be utilized and accessed by every player, out of the box, while removing the barrier to entry for players unaware of how to maintain a server on their own."

Infinity Ward's community manager also noted that the studio has invested more into the PC edition of Modern Warfare 2 than any other installment in the franchise, loading it out with the most features as a result. Specifically, the service streamlines the server-selection process by identifying the best possible match for any given player, based on criteria of lag, preferences, and skill level.

IWNet will also support private matches, for those who have a specific set of people they'd like to play with or who wish to participate in custom-rules matches. The service also accommodates friends lists, letting gamers form a party and move between different matches together. Lastly, the service also incorporates Valve's Anti-Cheat (VAC) system, used in such multiplayer games as Team Fortress 2 and Left 4 Dead, to prevent player hacking and other disruptive behavior.

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Discussion

734 comments
c0mmanderKeen
c0mmanderKeen

good thing my internet is wtfpwnzfast so I will be server alot and play with no ping :) still a pity though. lets hope they do better next time....

tankman101
tankman101

hey is it 4 player splitscreen and speacil ops or just split screen multiplayer

Yapjer
Yapjer

It's funny because the PC version's already been hacked.. LOL so much for VAC. Thanks for pointlessly screwing us over IW

treydawg1
treydawg1

@Gamma_Fit umm did you even reead any of the call of duty mw 2 news? the pc version is basically the same as the console version.

Dane-o
Dane-o

it sucks for us south africans who have crappy internet connection and a big online community.

Gamma_Fit
Gamma_Fit

@treydawg1 cause of the situation u guys are in now...

treydawg1
treydawg1

@Gamma_Fit why would i buy a console when a pc is more powerful (depending on specs)?

Gamma_Fit
Gamma_Fit

why dont you guys jus buy a console???? you'd have as much fun as im having right now :P

machew100
machew100

If you are turning away from the PC version solely because of the "no custom servers" detriment, you'd be missing out. The control you get from a mouse and keyboard greatly outmatches a controller, and that's the hugest difference between platforms for me. I bought CoD 4 for 360, it got stolen, then I repurchased the game of the year edition for PC and decided I'm never going back to buying CoD on consoles.

NeoFryBoy
NeoFryBoy

He's trying to make it sound good for us, but all they're doing is forcing everyone to become a server.

rodman1
rodman1

Oh, and if any of you think this will hurt PC sales, no one really cares. Most of the profits will be from console sales anyway so not getting this game for PC becouse of the new multiplayer only screws yourself.

rodman1
rodman1

Don't any of you remember how pissed Activision was to find out how many were playing a pirated version of COD4 online? This IWnet is (along with steam anti cheat) a way to combat just that, all the fing pirates. I hated how COD4 had no freinds list and as of late most servers only offer hardcore mode of 24-7 single maps, not to mention the issues with punkbuster. Being an honest pc gamer I welcom the new online multiplayer as it will be simple, easy and worry free to play. The PC is still the best place to be for 1st person shooters and I for one will buy this game. Don't hate Robert for this, hate the fing pirates that ruin it for the rest of you.

Dynamo11
Dynamo11

@Kilpers13 Ignorant f***in' console player....

treydawg1
treydawg1

@Kilpers13 the pc version of MW2 is the same price as the console version which is $60 US.

Kilpers13
Kilpers13

blahblahblahblah. All I ever hear is PC gamers whining about SOMETHING. PC games always have the cheapest version of a game, a mouse and keyboard to play with etc etc. Give it a rest and get a f*ing life.

Export
Export

Robert Bowling is a tard. Plain and simple . 9vs9 for mp when COD4 supports 32vs32 ?!? PC player will have to pay for map packs now !?! . I hope this game gets burned in sales and Battlefield BC2 will show him . HOW to respect PC gamers and HOW to care for them too.

mrquique
mrquique

That's why I love Killzone 2 multiplayer system... no cheating, no kicking and no hacking.... Thanks!

treydawg1
treydawg1

@pudgexd i hate to say it but i think they are going to stick to there guns on this. thats ok we just get a CODMW2 alternative.

pudgexd
pudgexd

No dedicated servers = massive delay and lag for asian like myself. 300 ping is not cool man. No mods???no zombie mods and other fun mod that adds the longevity of the game.Thats crap. Its like saying starcraft 2 without world editor. Will wait for better news(hopefully dedi server) before buying this game.

treydawg1
treydawg1

well there is a alternative to CODMW2 for pc gamers coming out and its free if you own half-life2. well its a multiplayer HL2 mod called firearms source and firearms 2. google them.

treydawg1
treydawg1

@DRasor21 its not sleezy its actually a good move. IWs loss becomes DICEs gain.

ccmaster86
ccmaster86

@ DRasor21 They did actually in kind of a funny way! Soon after this was announced, DICE reinforced the fact that BC2 will have dedicated servers and mod capability in their game..seems sleezy to ride off the heels of IW's total blunder, but, funny nonetheless :)

nazgul9910
nazgul9910

wow, mad that you cant cheat in multiplayer...

NoHotAshes
NoHotAshes

youre right no im not. yet me and everybody else can see this is a tarded idea

shoelaces-4-all
shoelaces-4-all

@NoHotAshes you might flame me to death with this but um when you say "Robert Bowling = Console NOOB" i mean... you do say that witht he complete realization that he is a game designer and you are not right? like he helps build this game... which they do on PCs.. if anything, especially in regards to this game, he isnt a noob at all. we're the noobs, not him, you me and everybody else.

treydawg1
treydawg1

i just heard that online is caped at 9vs9. that REALLY sucks ass. even half-life 1 had more players than that during deathmatch. hell even the original tribes did better than that.

NoHotAshes
NoHotAshes

curse the day consoles become online enabled

glassfish8
glassfish8

not all mods are stupid i agree with that but i have played on some servers with corrupt admins and stupid rulez i was on one the otherday where u couldn't run crouch or aim down the sites.Stupid admins always changing the server like zero gravity and god mode these new servers will also be better quality and have less lagg clans can still live and breath through the friends list so no worry there. thanks guys Glassfish:)

treydawg1
treydawg1

@maxwell97 so pc only games are low budget? tell that to games like diablo 3 and WOW (i know its a mmo but mmos suck ass on consoles)

maxwell97
maxwell97

To clarify, not all mods are stupid, but generally speaking I say they don't add much, at least in the case of a game that was designed right in the first place - like CoD. Mostly I'm tired of the whining. "Oh, Activision doesn't care about PC gamers! IW is just out for money! It's just a console game! Wah!" I love PC gaming, but face the facts: in '07, CoD4 sold 383,000 copies on PC, and over 3 million on Xbox 360. Development costs are estimated to have been $20 million; the first two months of PC sales don't even cover that. Games with high production values have high costs, and I'm darned happy that all the console gamers are there to fund games like CoD, which frankly just wouldn't be as good without the up-front investment drawn by the potential console market. That means consoles drive development of big-budget games. If you don't like it, go play low-budget PC-only games (there are plenty out there), and stop whining.

DRasor21
DRasor21

I really hope you are taking note of this fan outcry EA/Dice!

treydawg1
treydawg1

@glassfish8 this doesnt stop hackers. in the computer tech world there is NO SUCH THING as unhackable it just takes some times and a hacker that has enough patience. even consoles can be hacked.

glassfish8
glassfish8

i think this may actully be a good thing no more crappy high lagg servers and corrupt admins, and stupid hackers

treydawg1
treydawg1

@maxwell97 how are mods stupid. if mods were stupid then the console versions of oblivion and fallout 3 would be the better versions but thats not the case now is it?

kmconstable
kmconstable

Maxwell you are just ignorant and the correct emotion is pitty!

maxwell97
maxwell97

IMHO, I'm glad they're doing this. I prefer CoD4 on the PC over 360 (played both a ton), EXCEPT that using Live is so much better than browsing individual servers for a game. I want to play CoD, not deal with a bunch of arbitrary console-talked rules from angstful nerds who want you to play THEIR way, or stupid mods that try to make the game "better" and just screw it up. I'll be hated for saying this, but it's true - IW is a lot better at designing games than the "community."

JakobV
JakobV

Im gonna lol when pc sales are still high or if they are low, when they stop making the pc version completely. Sure it sux that you lost your servers. but plz, its just a way of picking multi games. You can still have friendlists, change rules, make teams and whatever they added for this game. Maybe you cant block the noobs tube. But you can still play a brand new game and you just have to be better than the noob tube now.

mashrurkabir
mashrurkabir

if any one here has a ps3 and has cod 4 online... vs me.... my psn account is tarif_44 bring ittttt... :(

jim_o_jim
jim_o_jim

lol...gijerky you got no idea... the only reason why ppl buy games on computer is for the multiplayer... IW screwed that up now because the competitive ladders cannot be organised any more... so yes, pc sales will drop, quoted drops already are at 75% cancellation of pre-order... pc owners will just get pirated copies, as they know they cannot have a team and compete in ladders like they used to...

gijerky
gijerky

do the pc guys ever stop complaining? and HAHA i really do not think that the pc sales are going to be that low, low compared to the rest of that sales but that was going to happen anyway

doncorleone852
doncorleone852

This was a launch day purchase fer me. 60 bucks was no problem. All the people I used to play with say they aint buying it. So private matches are useless. Too bad I was really looking forward to this game.

BuzzTrack
BuzzTrack

"PC gamers dont hate Console gamers, we're just better than them." (i actually love the Wii i have, bt i thought that was a great opener) What in God's name would drive Activision to think us PC users want one of our greatest utilities (creating, hosting and modding our servers) taken away from us? Every PC player knows what its like to have a community of players online, to go to the same server every few nights and meet the same people. This attempt to "hold your hand" is a complete insult to our intelligence and, i'm sorry to say to you Bowling, is just simply bullsh*t! That's what it is: bullsh*t. I've played Call of Duty since day 1 all those years ago, and i'll have to just play some CoD United Offensive until Bad Company 2 comes out. Confusion, heartbreak. But life goes on, preferably without Activision. Some Base Assault anyone? I want the tank.

BuzzTrack
BuzzTrack

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

BuzzTrack
BuzzTrack

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

reteip9
reteip9

I'm gonna lol when sales on pc are extremely low for mw2 because there are no dedi servers and I'm not gonna buy it, don't wanna press the ''join game'' button a hundred times just to find a server with more than 40 players on it, hopefully cod7 has dedicated server support and a campaign wich takes time to finish not like spending an afternoon on the sp of a 60 euro game like i did with cod4.