Team Fortress 2 multiplayer questions

nagromme

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May 2, 2002
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1. Can you easily fire up a private match that only a friend can join? (Whether by IP address or otherwise. StarCraft II doesn’t seem to do this well, so I have to ask!)

2. Is it possible to have a reasonably playable match (1v1 with bots, at least) between the US and Europe? (I know that varies by connection, but for instance, I’ve had great luck playing Quake Wars between continents, while some games just can’t ever do that, even on a good day. How’s TF2? Good enough for casual fun across the pond? Unplayable? Flawlesss? I suppose just knowing how tolerant TF2 is of poor connections in general would be useful.)

Thanks in advance!
 

0098386

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Jan 18, 2005
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1) I haven't tried this myself but I did join a private server set up by a friend for achievement farming. I don't think it's as easy as clicking on Create Server on the main menu either (tried that with Synergy and Garry's Mod and it never worked).

2) It's not really possible no. Back when I had a bad connection (512kbps) I used to only play local servers for a ping of ~40. Now I have a 40mbps connection and I get around 10 on local servers, 50-80 on European ones and 100+ on US servers. Not even going to try and play on an Australian server :p.
I guess it depends on your tolerance to ping, but bear in mind with such a fast game like TF2 people with lower pings have the upper hand.
 
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nagromme

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Thanks. Where were you when you were playing?

If ping is the only problem, and I can happen to get sub-100 ping between US and Europe, that might be OK for a closed 1v1 with a known opponent (neither of us is that great anyway :p ).

As for creating a private match—do you have to run a server app PLUS a client app? (Some IdTech games are like that.)
 
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0098386

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I believe so, TF2 has a server app in the Tools tab. I've never managed to get it working though.

Not sure how good 1v1 games are though. It really is aimed at being a team game, all the classes have strengths and weaknesses to other classes. Would be good for achievement/weapon farming though ;).
 
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nagromme

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I believe so, TF2 has a server app in the Tools tab. I've never managed to get it working though.

Not sure how good 1v1 games are though. It really is aimed at being a team game, all the classes have strengths and weaknesses to other classes. Would be good for achievement/weapon farming though ;).
Well, I’m thinking of team games with bots, and each team having one human who wields the brains :) Just for fun more than for playing it at its best. As for achievements, I don’t know what they are in TF2, but I don’t like the sound of farming :)
 
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Libertine Lush

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Nov 23, 2009
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I believe so, TF2 has a server app in the Tools tab. I've never managed to get it working though.
Yes, you just need to download the server app and run it alongside the game. The server app doesn't work on Mac though.
 
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0098386

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Well, I’m thinking of team games with bots, and each team having one human who wields the brains :) Just for fun more than for playing it at its best. As for achievements, I don’t know what they are in TF2, but I don’t like the sound of farming :)
Back in the old days new weapons would get unlocked from getting X amount of achievements per character. You still get that but they also give random weapon drops every few deaths. Not sure on the exact number, I died around 10 times in my last game and got 1 weapon. And if you have too many of the same weapon you can melt them down and craft new ones.

It's all pretty good now.
 
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nagromme

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It's all pretty good now.
Sounds neat!

Yes, you just need to download the server app and run it alongside the game. The server app doesn't work on Mac though.
So a few friends with Macs can’t play each other without strangers intruding? (Short of buying a private server!)

I’m more interested in playing with friends than with strangers, so that might be a deal-breaker. (But they might also fix the issue!)
 
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Libertine Lush

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So a few friends with Macs can’t play each other without strangers intruding? (Short of buying a private server!)
You just need the server app running on Windows, then anyone can join the hosted game, regardless of their OS. Or you can probably just virtualize the app within OSX.
 
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nagromme

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May 2, 2002
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You just need the server app running on Windows, then anyone can join the hosted game, regardless of their OS. Or you can probably just virtualize the app within OSX.
I don’t see us messing with Windows—not fun. So I’ll keep TF2 in mind for the future, but for now we’ll skip it and look at other games. I know Valve’s Mac support is new, and there will be growing pains! I can be patient :)

Thanks, all! Glad I asked!
 
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Flash SWT

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Mar 14, 2009
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Yes, you just need to download the server app and run it alongside the game. The server app doesn't work on Mac though.
You don't have to run the dedicated server. You can easily start a server from within the client application itself (however I'm not sure about adding bots into it).

Now the only problem I can think of is when your friend opens the server browser, it might list your internal (NAT) IP address for the server you are currently playing on instead of your external address they would need to connect.

This is simple enough to fix though, just give them your public IP and make sure the ports are forwarded on your router and you should be good to go. Simply use a password if you're worried about other people intruding.

.
 
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Libertine Lush

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Nov 23, 2009
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You don't have to run the dedicated server. You can easily start a server from within the client application itself
My understanding, having tried this recently and then doing some reading into it, is that you can't. When you create a server within the game, it's just a listen server, so it will only be accessible by those in your local network. Am I wrong?
 
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Flash SWT

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Mar 14, 2009
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My understanding, having tried this recently and then doing some reading into it, is that you can't. When you create a server within the game, it's just a listen server, so it will only be accessible by those in your local network. Am I wrong?
Well I don't think it will advertise itself on the public server lists (which the OP doesn't want anyways) but it should accept any incoming connection. So if you have my external IP and port 27015 is forwarded to my machine it isn't like the server will not accept your connection.

I'll admit that I've never tried it with TF2 but it works that way with other source titles like CS:S and DoD:S.

.
 
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nagromme

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May 2, 2002
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Thanks, all. I’ll sign up at the TF2 forums and ask these same questions (when I get around to it!) and I’ll post back if any additional info turns up.

My main hosting experience is with UT2004; and in UT2004 a Listen server doesn’t mean LAN-only. It just means you’re the host AND the player (be it for a LAN game or Internet game). Which, if TF2 can do the same, would be great. UT2004 can also do a Dedicated server (where you’re NOT playing), which is probably similar to what (Windows) TF2 can do. And I know in some games you can run a Dedi AND simultaneously be a player, by running both server and client at once.

Port forwarding isn’t a problem—I’ve set that up to host other games successfully. And giving my IP to my friend(s) is no problem either. So maybe Listen is the answer! I’ll keep digging....
 
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Flash SWT

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Mar 14, 2009
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TF2 can definitely do the same as UT2004 as far as being the host and the player all in the same program (under both Mac and Windows).

If you wanted to run the free standalone dedicated server you would need to run that under either Linux or Windows but it doesn't sound like you even need to worry about that.

.
 
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nagromme

macrumors G5
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Cool—I think I can skip the standalone dedi server. Can a “Listen” server have bots?
 
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nagromme

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Thanks for the lead. I’ll dig into it more in a few days.
 
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