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Regional FlagCan you fix it (culling) ?Source
innocent ouarior.1954
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#1 -

This is not a troll or a whine thread, I’v been a DAoC player (and some WAR) for years and so have most of my community. From 32 players we are now down to 3 due to wierd lags, 3W queue and Clipping issues. Tho most of my friends consider GW2 is the best product since DAoC and are willing to play again if at least clipping problem is solved.

Now I know this a commercialy hard question but Anet has proven before that they are slightly over commercial issues in term of communication and game design.

Q: Will clipping in WvWvW be fixed one day? Can your graphic engine (servers) actually make it work? (When?)

ArenaNet Poster
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#2 -

tl;dr: We are working on a fix (a collection of fixes, really) for culling and character loading issues. The fixes require significant changes to a number of game systems and thus require time to implement. We’re not yet ready to discuss a release date for the current set of fixes, but we’re working hard to improve the experience as quickly as we can.

Now for the long version:

We currently use server-side report culling to limit the number of characters that any given game client is aware of. By limiting the number of characters that we report to any given client we also limit the bandwidth used (by the server and the client) and avoid situations where the client is overwhelmed by the number of characters that need to be processed and rendered. While this system has some obvious advantages, and it works well in PvE, the large battles that are the signature of WvW tend to highlight the deficiencies of this approach.

There are also some client-side issues which have contributed to the perception of how our culling system works. Once a character is reported to a given client there’s a non-zero amount of time required to load and initially display the assets associated with that character. Extra load time varies depending on how beefy the client machine is (those with more memory, faster CPUs, more CPU cores, and faster drives experience shorter load times). One of our engine programmers recently completed an optimization pass on the character loading process and so we should be seeing improvements to that part of the issue very soon. Even so, the bulk of the issue remains with the server-side culling as it doesn’t matter how fast your client can load and draw a character if it hasn’t even been told that character should exist yet.

As you may have heard we already have a fix for the server-side culling implemented for sPvP. Because sPvP has dramatically less players we were able deploy our fix immediately without worrying about downstream side effects. WvW, however, operates at a much larger scale than sPvP and so we have a number of additional hurdles to clear before we can turn on the server-side fix. In order to address the culling issue we need to ensure that clients, including min-spec clients, are able to handle rendering and processing many more characters. We also need to ensure that the bandwidth needed by any given client remains reasonable and falls within our min-spec for connectivity. The WvW team is working to address both the bandwidth and the client performance issues even now. The changes that we’re making are complex and have a large impact on the way the game engine works. Because of the level of complexity involved, and the core systems that are impacted, these fixes take time to implement correctly. As such, I can’t give you a date when we’ll be done.

At the end of the day our goal is to dramatically improve the experience of large battles in WvW and provide a substantial increase to the number of players that can be seen by any given client.

ArenaNet Poster
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#84 -

I’d like to correct a common misconception that I see popping up regularly in these threads. The culling that exists in Gw2 today is the same as what we shipped with. It was not introduced after the game launched, but was in fact present on day one. I suspect that people didn’t notice it as much in the beginning due to the game being all shiny and new, but it has been there all along.

I would also like to add a personal observation: I understand that the current state of culling is frustrating. It frustrates us too and we’re working hard to fix it. Often in these threads people propose a variety of options for addressing the issue along with the suggestion that their proposed changes are simple. This is a tempting line of thought but in my experience very little of what goes on in game development is actually simple. In particular, the changes required to deal with culling involve fundamental changes to core systems. Both the changes and the systems involved are complex, which is why it’s taking us so long to implement them. As I hope I’ve made clear in my posts fixing the culling issues is a major focus of the WvW team right now and I firmly believe that we will be able to achieve significant improvements when our current development efforts are complete.