Is it me or is it that Hypixel has consistently have a high player number (in the ten thousands), while servers like Mineplex (Java edition) have declined to around a few thousand (or at one point, hundreds) of people?
I know this will result in a whole bunch of subjective opinions, but I don't know how that server maintains a high player count?
Hypixel is one of the most notorious Minecraft servers there is, and for that, servers that are ranked "up there" usually are known to have a reputable history to their name, good mini games/games and no pay-to-win backbone.
Servers like Hypixel don't show up over night normally, and usually require the server to be senior to that of your average Minecraft Forums-advertised server. Around 5+ years with numerous Minecraft YouTubers covering the server. Hypixel covers all of the above, but that alone does not cause a server to thrive.
The minecraft community plays a major role in the support and development of the server, as well as the future when regarding the player-base : staff relationship. The staff and the content they produce and enforce over must be in the interests of the community (hype). Servers with large hype will have a large quantity of players flocking into the server, but after a while, if the minigame/game that's causing the hype is getting boring, lacking updates and bug fixes, or straight out just has too many hackers, this can kill the player-base motivation as no longer does the community see the server as reliable and the minigame/game worth the time or effort to achieve.
The servers you referred to are mostly based in the Bedrock Edition realm, they may have branched out to Java Edition as well (like BrokenLens), but the cross-platform play between Java Edition and Bedrock Edition is not reliable (especially in combat might I add).
Why does this matter?
The servers you gave as examples define the conflict of Bedrock Edition servers vs Java Edition servers.
Bedrock Edition servers are pretty much garbage imo. Cosmetics are a little too over the top and the Minecoin system is really difficult to manage. Most players prefer to just use PayPal and know exactly how much they are paying; however, with Minecoins, this system makes calculations a little blurry and the constant need to refill on Minecoins with packs is an unnecessary added step. Hackers are also prevalent on the Bedrock Edition servers.
Especially on Mineplex, YouTubers even admit that they've hacked on Mineplex before as a joke. Even going as far as saying, "Yes, I'm hacking on Mineplex, but yet again, who hasn't?"
The respect and reputation for Mineplex in a single sentence describes one of the biggest flaws in Mineplex. That being, poor staff performance in preventing these hackers from thriving, no anti-cheat system that is reliable and the poor relationship and viewpoint of the Mineplex server as a whole.
Back in the day, Bedrock Edition servers were awesome. Cross-play wasn't a thing, which made everyone fight a fair match on the same platform (No Windows 10 vs Pocket Edition) cosmetics and ranks didn't give a pay-to-win advantage (as much) and hackers were a rare sight to see. Nowadays, the platform (BE) itself is now infested with hackers, glitches and OP ranks.
When I refer to these ranks, I mean, that you literally can't do [email protected] without buying some kind of "UberVIP". In Lifeboat, you have to buy UberVIP to literally invite your friend to your Skyblock Island, but in Hypixel, you can do this for FREE. I understand the struggles of Bedrock Edition server where they cannot refuse to update their Minecraft version to the latest release, whereas servers like Hypixel remain at the 1.8 update but allow 1.8+ to play, but it does get really frustrating to just play on the server and see "Oh, you need to buy UltraVIP to chat here".
I can ramble on and on about each and every server and destroy them with their own flawed concepts, but I will restrain to do so since I know these people work hard to even maintain such a server with a dying playerbase and stagnant/declining funds.
Here the summary of it:
- Java Edition servers have better quality, minigames, plugins, anticheats, clients and cosmetics/ranks than Bedrock Edition servers
- No Java Edition player would ever play on a Bedrock Edition server (even if there's a "crossplay" system) unless they are experimenting or hacking
- Java Edition has the top ranking servers in Minecraft history over than that of Bedrock Edition
- Hackers, glitches, dupes and rule-breakers are not handled quickly on Bedrock Edition servers to Java Edition servers (there's literally a top ranked BE server that has not fixed the same Skywars dupe glitch in MONTHS - despite being "active").
- Mechanics in Java Edition are more reliable
- Cosmetics in Bedrock Edition are horribly overworked
- Maturity difference between Java Edition communities to that of Bedrock Edition Communities (Java Edition has less brain-dead knots than Bedrock Edition)
- Java Edition servers have the option to stay behind on favorable Mod clients/versions for stability reasons and mechanic-reasons, whereas Bedrock Edition servers HAVE to update or will face losing their entire player-base completely - which leads to stability issues, glitches and plugins breaking
- In case you haven't noticed, the probable reason as to why Minecraft had the 5 star servers implemented was because players (little kids) didn't know how to join public servers with the IP, so Minecraft added 5 default servers to add easier access for those youngsters
- To join a specific server, you need a server IP AND a Port Address whereas in Java Edition, all you need is a version of JVE and the server IP.
- More YouTubers play on Java Edition servers (more free advertisement for these servers).
- On Bedrock Edition, some servers (like Lifeboat) have the /report and /hacker system incapable or reporting anyone. Sometimes it goes as far as not even registering the command. You can also report yourself as well LOL..
A ton more..
Relating that to the dying player base, the community loses player base when people lose faith in the server or when minigames are removed due to technical issues, which leads to sparking outrages and unmotivated players. I saw a forums where admins had to start banning people for even complaining or making any posts regarding the removal of a minigame. Admins there even admitted that they acknowledged the fact that their player base was dying and that they were tired of hearing that reference about the server. Bedrock Edition servers seem to have decreasing progression in entertainment. Developers became desperate to see a minigame that would bring back the numbers they were seeing a few years back that they even started copying the Hypixel Skyblock idea into Bedrock Edition. Although not as developed as Hypixel's, they added similar mechanics to that of Hypixel or even just only added the Skyblock part to the server in hopes that the success would reciprocate to their server. (It hasn't done so to the extent of Hypixel). The player base back then consisted of a LOT of youngsters, but as time went on, they wised-up and saw that Java Edition was a better platform. Others quit Minecraft forever (seeing it not appealing anymore). Think of it as a player base that grows up only to leave it for the other edition community. Bedrock Edition servers have it rough with minimal community support in development to that of Java Edition's flexibilities. It's all cool, until it's not. + all of the reasons above (and more).
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"Actions should not be followed by regret. Regret should not be followed by remorse. Why do it, when you'll only feel bad in the end?" - SilentHunterX
I was more referring to the Java edition servers (Mineplex is java edition), and I mainly play java edition minecraft. I have a copy of bedrock edition and the servers there just felt... different
Even so, there is more players on the Mineplex Bedrock server than on java edition, potentially due to the hacking reasons listed. On an alt I use, the GWEN anti-cheat system on Java edition can only ban blatant killaura/antiknockback/flying hackers and not "stealthy" hackers like killauralegit and client-based hacks (x-ray, tracers, block ESP for block hunt). The Hypixel Server's Watchdog system is controversial in that it bans players based on the information gathered from their client, but with enough reporting, it is more effective than Mineplex's (from my experience), even though it is not perfect.
Also, Hivemc's java edition server is being neglected
I was more referring to the Java edition servers (Mineplex is java edition)
mineplex is on the bedrock featured server list, atleast it is on windows 10 edition, though being this is java discussion the bedrock versions of servers should be disreguarded
i think the servers you mentioned have managed to stay so big due to them getting in early and getting the following and managing to come up with new fresh ideas to keep their players happy, aswell as keeping their servers running well evern with the amount of players (i assume they run well, i've never been on them)