Starting Up and Connecting to a Server
Getting up and running with Return to Castle Wolfenstein is easy. Once you've installed the game, start it with the "Multiplayer" shortcut (or, if you prefer, you can start it any other way and then select "Multiplayer" from the main menu).
Once you start the game, take a few minutes to go through the options and controls menus to get everything just right. Things like resolution and other video options will have a big impact on how well the machine runs on your system. Experiment and find out what works best for you. Generally, turning down things like texture quality, world geometry, color depth, and resolution will increase how smoothly the game runs, but sacrifices image quality.
Important: Go into the Multiplayer --> Multiplayer Options menu and make sure your Network option is on the right setting for your connection to the Internet. This may improve performance for those on broad band (and possibly dialup as well).
Using GameSpy Arcade with Multiplayer
GameSpy Arcade is a freeware program that allows you to easily find game servers for Return to Castle Wolfenstein (and the multiplayer test) as well as more than 250 other games and demos. It's free to download and use as often as you like for as long as you like, and a small registration fee can unlock additional features. It's really the best way to get in the game.
If you don't already have GameSpy Arcade, the first step is to download it and install it. This process is super easy.
Once you have Arcade and Wolfenstein installed, just boot up Arcade and it should detect the game. Look along the left-hand side of the screen and click on the triangle next to "Games" (or "Demos" if you're playing the multiplayer test). Huzzah! You should now see a RTCW icon. Click on it to enter the game's room, or "lobby".
There are three parts to the game lobby. The top of the screen is dominated by the server lists. Get a new list by clicking on the "refresh list" link. The bottom half is the chat area where you can talk to other people who are also connected to the lobby. Just to the right of the chat area is the player list, showing the names of the people in the lobby.
Connecting to a Game Through GameSpy Arcade
To connect to a server, just double click on it in the server list. That's it!
Filtering The Server List in GameSpy Arcade
You may not even want servers that are empty or have high pings to be listed in your server list. There are two ways to filter the server list in GameSpy Arcade so that it only shows you the ones you want: simple and advanced.
Simple Filtering With List Collumns
The simple way is to type in parameters in fields at the top of each collumn in the server list. For example, to see only servers with pings less than 100, type "< 100" in the space near the top of the "Ping" collumn. To filter out all the empty servers, type "> 0" into the "Players" collumn.
The advanced method requires a couple of steps, but is much more flexible. Left click on the little arrow on the top left of the server list and choose "Advanced Filtering"
Then choose "Enter Advanced Filter..." and put in your filter terms.
You can filter on any of the rules displayed when you tip down the arrow next to a server name. (So this won't work for every game -- we can only filter based on what they report.)
So, if you only wanted to see servers where the time limit was greater than 8 minutes, you would enter "timelimit > 8" as the filter.
You can do all kinds of stuff with it. Like "only show me servers with more than 12 people, but at least 4 slots open:
(numplayers > 12) and (numplayers < (maxplayers - 4))
Experiment with the server filters to get the settings you want.
Want more information on how to use GameSpy Arcade with Return to Castle Wolfenstein? Visit the handy-dandy GameSpy Arcade walkthrough to find out more!
Using The In-Game Browser with Multiplayer
Using the in-game browser is fairly straight forward. There are only a few items that you need to be aware of.
The Server List
Set to Internet or Local. Setting it to Internet will search the whole 'net for games. Setting to Local will look on your local area network for games.
Get New List
Click this button to scan the 'net or your LAN for a completely new list of servers.
Click this to refresh the current list. This will not add any new servers to the list.
Your network connection type. Make sure this is correct for optimum performance.
Clicking this allows you to filter the server list by full/empty status, friendly fire settings, Maxlives, and Tourney settings.
Allows you to filter the server list by Objective, Stopwatch, and Checkpoint modes. Leave to "All" to see all the servers.
The server list contains the names of all the servers, what map they're running, the type of game they're running, the number of players connected to the server, and your ping to the server.
Map Name and Type show you what map and game type (Objective, Stopwatch, or Checkpoint) the servers are running at that time. Ping is a measure of the speed it takes for information to go from your computer to the server and back. Lower pings are better.
It's possible to sort your server list in the in-game browser as well. To do so, simply click on the column. The picture above shows a server list sorted by ping.
Problems With the In-Game Browser?
Some people report getting an error message like "-1 Servers found" when trying to get a list of servers with the in-game browser. If this happens to you, you have two options:
- Bring down the console with the "~" key and then type "ping wolfmaster.idsoftware.com" without the quotes.
- If that doesn't work, then use GameSpy Arcade.