Full Districts

Full Districts

Why Are Districts Always Full?

Full districts are the worst in APB. It might sound good from the outside, but a full district means that you aren’t able to play with a fully populated district. You might ask, “Why don’t you just join an empty server and wait for people to fill it up?”

The issue here would be waiting for players, as players rarely like to wait in an empty district. The most commonly full districts are the silver labeled districts.

Get ready for a read.

They are always full because of how APB works. Grind it down to the basics, and it’s pretty simple.

  1. Players want to play the game.
  2. APB wants to segregate the population for fair and fast matchmaking.
  3. Districts are only able to support a certain amount of players.
  4. Only certain segregated districts have enough players to play in. (ex: gold district almost always empty)
  5. Players of all threat levels go to where they can play a game as fast as possible. (ex: silver district) This creates matchmaking issues.
  6. A limited 100 players per district limits the matchmaking’s ability even further to create fair and fast matches. (although, it’s 40-40 as of now)

As the population fluctuates, a trend occurred in where players would play in districts that aren’t the same threat levels, for example, gold players in silver districts. The reason why silver districts are almost always the full districts is because that the threat level is the middle ground, in which two threat levels, one above and below, can join to play.

This obviously offers more combinations for match making, but there’s no sort of system to prevent a flood of one certain threat level of players. This might cause an interesting configuration of opponents.

  1. As a gold player, you might be facing a mix of silver and bronze players, in which the system tried to compensate the lower threat level, with more players. There have been situations where a group of 4 gold players can face up to 8 players on the other team.
  2. For backup, one team might be able to call in a gold, while the other team consistently receives a silver or lower.
  3. Trainees are wildcards, and the system has nothing to categorize them with. As this happens, new players might face against highly experienced players. There are additional consequences to this. First, if they lose, they might not experience any sort of fun while getting steamrolled. But if they somehow manage to win, the game might place them in gold, which would constantly pit them against players who have high rating gear that can only be obtained by progression.

The APB community was never able to work it’s way out of it’s trend, with fault on both the players and the game itself. If a player were to play on their on district, they would have to wait for players of the same threat level to join, and even then, many players express irritation when playing against the same group of people. Some community members argue that if higher ranked players avoided playing in lower ranked districts, then the game could operate more smoothly. It would also avoid deterring new players who would face against much more experienced opponents. Unfortunately, APB doesn’t offer any incentive to join your own threat level districts. Players mainly join the most populated district despite it even being a full district, in order to access the game as soon as possible. Before, players were actually penalized for joining a server they didn’t belong in, but players valued being able to play the game versus avoid having reduced rewards.

Are There Solutions?

There’s always a solution, but the question is, which one is the correct solution?

  • Increase the total capacity for districts. For example, allow 75 enforcers and 75 criminal for a total of 150 players in a district.

This could work as it’s the most simple one. The issue being that the servers might spontaneously catch on fire. There’s costs, but I think that the benefits outweigh the cost. With the added content, there seems to be some correlation to additional content and decreasing server performance. Quality servers sure would be nice though, wouldn’t they? 🙂

  • Force players to play in their own districts.

This would not work. This runs the risk of making it harder to play with friends. Also, the threat levels of players are not evenly spread. It’s mathematically impossible for APB to have 25% Greens, 25% Bronzes, 25% Silvers, and 25% Golds. Factor in the various times players would want to play, and there would almost always be an uneven distribution of players playing. That would mean that the Bronze server could only have 14 enforcers and 17 criminals, while the gold district is 30 enforcers and 48 criminals.

Full districts are a good thing, but this funneling of players into certain districts is detrimental to the game’s life span. Only time will tell how this longstanding issue will be resolved.