World vs. World Culling in GW2 Coming to An End on March 26
If you’ve hit the fields of WvW in Guild Wars 2 since its release on August 28, 2012, you may have noticed a little problem with some enemy players in large groups being on the field that you couldn't see. This unfortunate little occurrence is what's known as culling, a process that helps cut down on network resources while having the side effect of confusing the hell out of some players on the WvW battlefield. Fortunately, ArenaNet proclaimed that the culling in WvW will be removed completely in the upcoming match on March 26.
Reasons of Removing Culling in WvW
Although culling achieved ArenaNet's goal of limiting bandwidth and client-side resource utilization, it had the unfortunate side effect of causing large battles in WvW to be confusing, as there were sometimes many enemy players that were completely invisible. Additionally, there were side effects of culling which could result in stealth characters getting up to two seconds of additional invisibility when coming out of stealth. By removing culling, ArenaNet has been able to eliminate these negative side effects and greatly increase the epic feel of large WvW battles. But the changes are to the client/server culling and have no bearing on basic graphics operations in the GW2 client.
Differences Between Non-Culling WvW and Previous System
1. Characters can be rendered in three different ways under the new system.
High resolution models: These are the high-res character models that you’re all already familiar with.
Lower resolution fallback models: These are the models that we’ve been using as placeholders in WvW while the hi-res models load. They differ depending on race and armor class, though human, sylvari, and norn share the same model.
Nameplates only: We don’t render the model at all and instead only show the nameplate for that character.
2. Two new options will be added to allow players to select how WvW characters are displayed.
WvW Character Limit: This controls how many of the reported characters render with a model and how many are rendered only with nameplates.
WvW Character Quality: This controls how many of the characters rendered with a model use the high resolution models and how many use the lower resolution fallback models.
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