When Infinity Ward announced last month that dedicated servers wouldn’t be supported in Modern Warfare 2, PC gamers went nuts. Forums exploded with anger and an internet petition against the move is currently sitting at nearly 185,000 signatures. Despite the best efforts of Infinity Ward, it was widely seen as yet another example of the “dumbing down” of videogaming in favor of people who get confused when they’re confronted with more buttons than they have fingers on one hand.
But now it sounds like Infinity Ward won’t be alone in forsaking the mouse-and-keyboard set: No less a luminary than John Carmack himself said recently that id would probably follow the same path with Rage, its newest project. “It’s not cast in stone yet, but at this point no, we don’t think we will have dedicated servers,” he told Variety.
He also sounded thankful that Infinity Ward is blazing this particular trail, so he won’t have to. “The great thing is we won’t have to be a pioneer on that,” he continued, apparently mindful of the fact that the decision won’t be a popular one. “We’ll see how it works out for everyone else.”
This one stings a bit. Infinity Ward did a great job with Modern Warfare but Carmack is – or was – “one of us.” Is it possible that he’s right – that dedicated servers are a “remnant” of days gone by and have no place in contemporary gaming? John Carmack is a groundbreaking genius and I’m really not looking to start an argument with the man but simplicity aside, I honestly don’t see the benefit of dropping dedicated server support. How does it make the experience better for anyone?