With the continued failure from Gameforge to cater to European players, there’s a high influx of them starting over with North American Aion provided directly by NCsoft, which requires no subscription, has affordable shop items and really good support. Many more than ever are now switching over as they released the 4.0 update, with Europe lacking behind for another 2-3 months, and most probably we’ll get a dumbed down version of it like happened with 3.0 and 3.5, no fts, no rifts, no xp boost etc etc.
The main issue with moving over however is latency, as crossing the ocean involves a big spike in ping which for some people makes the game almost unplayable.
In my case, this is the ping I normally get:
Needless to say this is a pain to do anything.. skills have a big delay, talking to npcs, even running around..
Patching tcp stack with ARM (does the same as Leatrix and a bit more, under “Help/Latency Fix”) is still not enough, since that is just a registry setting.
The only way I could get a decent ping to NA has been through using Battleping tunneling service, with these results:
now that’s so much nicer, ~playable and stable ping with no spikes. If you live in the UK or a European main city you are likely to get even better ping, probably 100-150 is possible.
The service is also completely allowed by the Aion publishers, as previously commented here:
To get started, download their installer here: http://www.battleping.com/
You can even use it for free to try it, no registration required, as a guest it will let you use it for 20 minutes and then disconnect (then you can restart it and use another 20 minutes, however the Aion client will also get disconnected).
To properly set it up, follow these simple steps:
1) Pick a server. “Texas 4” worked the best for me, but you may try different ones and see if you get a better ping. NC Aion servers are located in Texas. Note that you might see better ping in the server choice window with different servers, but it doesn’t mean you will have that ping in-game. For example, Florida/East Coast reports 150-160 ping, but then in-game it becomes 220-230; then Texas4 reports 185-190, and that’s what I get in game, with sometimes ~200 at most. So test a bit and see what works best for you.
2) Click on “Game Connection, and wait for the green message “Connected”.
3) Launch your game. You will notice it says “Game detected”. If you don’t see that, then something is wrong, and the game isn’t using batlleping. In the case of Aion sometimes it only shows up after you get to the Login screen and connect to the game.
If you switch servers to test for better ping, you will need to click on Game Connection again.
There are a few other similar services lately, I tried a few in the past but BP gave me the best ping, so I stayed with them. They seem to provide the most stable service after being in the business for already quite a few years.
Their price seems also quite reasonable, with the current rate exchange it’s around 4,1 euro/month, or 3,8 if you pay for 3 months at once.
Note that if you play only in Europe, you can still benefit from using this, most people with 100-120 ping can usually lower it to 50-60 and even if you have low ping already, with BP you will eliminate random lag spikes and get a more stable connection to the game.