When connecting to multiplayer servers on Garry's Mod, have you ever noticed the huge difference in ping and ranking? Have you ever seen servers from countries that you are nowhere near pop up at the top of the list for you?

This stark difference between rankings, player counts, and pings between some Garry's Mod servers and others is not a coincidence. In fact, it's a perfect demonstration of a technology used by certain communities in Garry's Mod called Anycast.

What is Anycast?

Anycast is a specialized technology used by a select few game server hosts as a means to prevent DDOS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks. Anycast DDOS Protection also increases the speed at which requests to join your Garry's Mod server are processed for the client (the player connecting to your server)

To understand Anycast, it's a lot easier to see it in action. Imagine you are a player in the UK looking for servers to join. Without servers on the list that use Anycast, the server list would look something like this...

Notice that there are no international servers, this is because they are far away from the UK and would take longer to ping. 

When you add Anycast servers into the mix, the server browser looks like this...

In an Anycast world, servers are shown from all over the world for the UK player, note the difference in ping between non-anycast communities (up to 50+ ping) and anycast communities (under 10 ping)

By using Anycast, players from all around the world are able to see servers that they typically would have never even been able to find without going all the way down to the bottom of the list. This is achieved by using a network of servers called POPs (Points of Presence) that are deployed globally for an Anycast's servers connections to be routed through.

Atomic Networks, our DarkRP and Sandbox brand that pulls 300+ daily concurrent players across 12 countries, makes use of Path.net's Anycast DDOS Protection through a custom back end that has been specially optimized for Garry's Mod.

Path.net's network consists of an ever expanding list of points of presence all over the world.

While not universally adopted in the wider game hosting industry, having Anycast on your Garry's Mod server is arguably one of the most important factors contributing to a Garry's Mod server's success in 2023. This is why it is extremely important to go with a Garry's Mod host that has specific and attributable experience within Garry's Mod as a game.

Want to see what Anycast does for your own Garry's Mod server? Claim one of our free Development Servers to see the effects that Anycast has even on empty Garry's Mod servers for ranking in the server browser.