Hussarknight's Guide to Playing RTW Online

Hello, and welcome to my guide on how to play RTW online. I've written this to help people out with the multiplayer part of the game. I've divided this guide into 3 parts. It is recommended to read part 1 and 2. Part 3 is meant to help you if you're encountering any problems.

Part 1: Getting Started

1. Make sure you have a clean, unmodded copy of RTW. Also make sure it is patched to version 1.5. (1.6 for BI)

2. Go to your firewall's control panel and find where it controls what programs may and may not do. I use ZoneAlarm, so what I say next might be different for other firewalls. Make sure that RTW has rights to access the internet and to act as a server. You may need to supply a password to perform such an action. In ZoneAlarm, it should look like this:

Firewall Example

If you don't know how you should do this, visit the website of your firewall. It's likely you'll find an answer there.

3. Now start RTW. Go to the multiplayer menu and click "Change CD-key". In the window that pops up, enter the CD-key that came with your copy of RTW. Make sure you enter it exactly the way it's printed, including the "-" between the different parts. Click the green button to continue.

4. Again in the multiplayer menu, click on "Online battles". A window will pop up asking you for the name that you wish to use. Enter a name you like, then click the green button to continue.

5. RTW will now connect to Gamespy. This may take a while. When it's connected, you'll see a screen like the one below.

Gamespy Example

The large section in the middle shows the games that are currently being hosted. Hover your cursor over a game to see it's details. There are 5 columns per game. The game name is, well, the name of the game. Map name tells you on which map the battle will take place. Game status tells whether the game is being played right now or if it's in setup stage. When it says "Not compatible" it means the game uses a different version or a mod. The players column tells you the current amount of players before the slash. and the maximum number of players after the slash. The last column is ping. This says something about the internet speed, but I've never seen a game with any ping at all, so it's definitely not important.

The bottom part is the chat function, which you can use to talk to other people who are online. The small box in the bottom right corner of the screen is a list of the rooms there are. It is best to go to the room called "Friendly", as most games are hosted here.

6. When you click on a yellow-coloured game, you can join it by clicking the button shaped like a computer screen with an arrow pointing towards it.

7. From here on, everything is pretty self-explanatory. You pick a faction and team, then you choose an army and when everybody is ready the battle starts. You can give orders just like in Singe Player, but the game will only be paused when all players select pause.

Congratulations, you can now play RTW online. However, it is recommended that you read part 2, which handles about being nice, first.

Part 2: Being Nice

It is possible to do pretty much whatever you like online. You will however, find it hard to find anyone willing to play a game with you when you act annoying. Below are a few things that will help you in the online world:

1. When you enter a game, say something like "hi" or "yo". This lets the other players know you're there, are polite and speak English.

2. Before you pick a faction, ask if there are any rules. Make sure you understand these rules and follow them. People tend to get pissed off when you don't follow the rules. If you don't understand them, don't be afraid to ask.

These are the most commonly used rules:

  • No art: no onagers, ballista's scorpions and the like.
  • No ele: no elephant, war elephants or armoured elephants.
  • Max X of unit type Y: You can have no more than X units of type Y (For example "max 8 cav" means you can have only 8 cavalry units).

Again, if you don't know what the rules mean ask the host or some other player.

3. Say something like "Have fun" when the battle starts. You can talk to other players in the battle by pressing "T" on your keyboard.

4. When you've one or more allies, fight together. Discuss what your strategy is going to be, who's going to attack where etc. Just try not to forget that you aren't your allies superior, but his equal. Fight together.

5. Admit your defeat when there is nothing you can do about it. Don't be an ass and keep running around the battlefield. Having to hang around for another 10 minutes just because some noobish opponent doesn't turn skirmish mode of for his last unit is frustrating.

If you keep these points in mind, you'll be able to get good games and opponents. One last note: ignore people who are talking rubbish or insulting people. Chances are they only want to start a fight.

Part 3: Troubleshooting

In an ideal world, you would never encounter any problems with RTW multiplayer at all. However we don't live in an ideal world, so this part is here to help you solve your problem.

In-Game Error Messages

Yellow Peasant has made a thread about the different error messages you can get here here.

Finding Your CD-Key

Depending on what edition of the game you own, the CD-Key will be in one of the following locations: - on the back of your instruction manual - on your CD-Case or CD-holder - on a separate piece of colored paper (Thanks to PrinceofMacedon)

Problems With CD-Key

If you get a message saying you entered an invalid CD-Key, chances are you've typed it wrong. Make sure you don't mistake "0" for "o" or "O". When it is "0", there should be a diagonal stripe inside the oval. Don't forget to include "-" when you type your CD-Key.

If you experience a different problem, don't be afraid to ask in the Technical Help and Bug Reporting forum.

Final Thoughts

I hope you've found this guide useful. If you have any comments regarding this guide, I'd love to hear them. You can contact me here on the forums or at hussarknight[at]gmail[dot]com. I hope you have a great time playing RTW online. Don't forget to come to the forum parties!

-Hussar

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