Yesterday, Mythic announced a solution for Fortresses. Prior to this change, fortresses were rarely captured, as there were just too many people. Estimates have been as high as 800 people participating in the fight. This has stalled most of the Tier 4 game, as progress can't be made toward the enemy city on many servers.
Mythic's solution involved capping the population of the zone. Some notes:
- Attackers have a higher cap than defenders. Good, as it should be. The fortress itself is a pretty big extra defender.
- Rank 40 players do have priority. Read the announcement for the details. Again, this is as it should be.
- Get better servers. There comes a time when you just can't throw money at the problem. Besides, if Mythic could fix the problem by equipment, why wouldn't they? Equipment is cheaper than programmer time.
- Use Stackless IO like Eve does. As far as I know, Eve still has lag issues when trying to deal with hundreds of people (fighting) and they have been working on the problem for years. Besides, Stackless IO (and Python) cannot take advantage of multiple core's (cpu's). It has its uses, but is not a cure all.
Capping the population also gives a nice side benefit. Mythic now knows the max number of attackers and defenders, so they should be able to tune difficulty better. I really hope this will lead to a better fortress experience down the road.
Another benefit is that it limits the zerg effect. No longer can one side just overwhelm the other with numbers. I don't think Mythic has said what the allowed numbers were for each side yet.
In the end, I think this is a good change. It may not be ideal, but it should get the campaign moving again instead of the endless fortress attempt and crash loop.