The GameSpy Network Hosting FAQ|
Got a gaming site? Want to be associated with one of the best gaming networks around? You've come to the right place! We sat down and thought up every question you could possibly ask about getting hosted on the GameSpy Network and its answer. So if you have a question about hosting, check the list, and if you don't find what you're looking for, e-mail us and let us know about it!
General Hosting Questions
- Do I have to pay for hosting on the GameSpy Network?
- What kind of sites do you host?
- How do you determine if a site will be hosted?
- I run a site I think you should host. Who do I e-mail to ask for hosting?
- Will you guys help me make a site?
- My site's going to be great, but I don't want to go to the trouble of making it if you guys aren't going to host it. So why should I make one?
- Once my site is hosted, can I get any exposure on the network to increase my hits?
- Can I host other sites on my own hosted site?
- I'm going to make a mod for Game X, but I have to get coders, modelers, and mappers. We haven't worked on it yet. Can I get hosting?
- I have a general gaming news Web site. Can I get it hosted?
- You already have a site dedicated to the same game my site is. Can I still get hosted?
- I want to make a site and I want you to host it, but I don't have any Web space to put it up so you guys can look at it. Help!
- Can I just zip up my entire site and e-mail it to you?
- What types of sites don't you host?
- How much Web/FTP space will I have?
- Will I get an e-mail account, too?
- I want to do ASP/PHP/CGI scripts, etc. on my site -- can I do that?
- Can I put forums on my site?
- Can I have a domain name for my site?
- Does GameSpy use Windows or Linux servers?
- Do I have to run your ad banners?
- Will you pay me for running your ads on my Web site?
- Other networks pay their hosted sites for running ad banners, but you guys don't. So why should I get hosted by you?
- I'm trying to make some money running my site. Can I put non-GameSpy banners on it?
- Can we sell ads or be part of paid affiliation program on our site?
- I want to run PlanetGameName. How can I do that?
- I want my site to be PlanetGameName. Can I do that?
- I notice you have PlanetGameName.com reserved. Are you planning on making a site for it? Can I help?
- What's the difference between a hosted site and a Planet site?
- Can a hosted site ever "get promoted" to a Planet site?
This FAQ didn't answer ANY of my questions. What do I do now?!
General Hosting Questions
1. Do I have to pay for hosting on the GameSpy Network?
Nope - hosting is completely free! We have only a few rules we ask that you abide by, such as running our ad banner at the top of each page on your site. [back to top]
2. What kind of sites do you host?
Mainly, we look for two types of Web sites: sites devoted to specific games, and sites devoted to projects and creative content for games. Some examples of the kind of sites we look for can be found by looking at any of our big Planet sites, like PlanetQuake, or our genre sites, like RPGPlanet and 3DActionPlanet. [back to top]
3. How do you determine if a site will be hosted?
We want a certain measure of quality among sites that we host because, after all, they're associated with the GameSpy name. We look at every site that comes into our hosting requests carefully to see if they meet a few criteria:
1. The site has to look nice. Yeah, we know that's kind of subjective, but we're pretty sure that everyone thinks lime green background colors with red 20-point blinking fonts are just annoying.
If you applied for hosting and were turned down, don't worry -- work on your site and make it the best site you can make it, and then reapply. Some of our hosted sites were turned down the first time, but that only made them work harder on their site until it qualified for hosting. We're always willing to look at a site a second time if you've put a lot of work into improving it. [back to top]
2. The site must fit into our network appropriately. That means that it should be focused on a particular game that we don't have a planet site for already, or it should be focused on mods, maps, or other add-ons for a particular game. It can also be something totally unique -- maybe your site is dedicated to fan fiction based on TRIBES.
To get an idea of what we're looking for, cruise around our network and take a look at our hosted sites. What we're not interested in are general gaming news sites, general mod or level download sites, or sites that already do what our Planet or genre sites do -- we've got all that covered. If that's what interests you, we're always looking for more staff; contact the site director for the particular site you're interested in working for.
3. The site must have a lot of content. We understand that it's a lot of work to create a site for something, and you don't want to put in all that work if there's a chance you won't be hosted. However, too many times people will have what they think is a great idea for a site and then never follow through. Therefore, you must have a fully developed site that we can look at. Having lots of "coming soon" sections is probably going to get a "no" on hosting.
4. The site must be updated regularly. One of the qualities of a good Web site is that it be updated regularly so that visitors always see something new.
5. The site must be in English. No, that's not because we're nationalistic, isolationist American pigs, though that we may be. It's because those of us working on the Network speak English primarily, and we need to be able to understand what's on our hosted sites.
4. I run a site I think you should host. Who do I e-mail to ask for hosting?
It depends on the focus of your site. If your site is devoted to one specific game that we don't have a Planet site for already, you would want to check with the appropriate genre site. If your site is devoted to things like maps, mods, fan fiction, or content like that for a game that we have a Planet site for, then you should apply for hosting at that particular Planet site. [back to top]
A good place to look for the right area of our network to apply would be the network listings found on every GameSpy site. There you'll find a listing of all the genre and Planet sites on our network. Pick the one applicable to your game and you'll find a link to hosting information on the front page of that site.
5. Will you guys help me make a site?
GameSpy has a pretty kick-ass team of Web designers and developers that make the great sites on our network. However, our hosted sites are all designed and run by the people who made them and applied for hosting. Our team is already pretty busy with GameSpy's network sites, so unfortunately we can't spare them to make hosted sites except in very special situations. [back to top]
6. My site's going to be great, but I don't want to go to the trouble of making it if you guys aren't going to host it. So why should I make one?
Like Question 3 says, too many times we've been told that someone has a terrific idea for a site and they know it's going to be really cool. But many times, they don't follow through on their idea, and we're left with an empty directory. To prevent that, we need to see a fully developed site before we can consider hosting. [back to top]
7. Once my site is hosted, can I get any exposure on the network to increase my hits?
Absolutely! In fact, we specialize in that. One of the greatest features of our network is the tight structure and community. There are several ways to get exposure across the GameSpy Network. First, you need to be sure and let your parent site know whenever you've got something cool -- they'll post news about it on the site. That news filters up through the other sites in the Network and gets posted on the genre sites, as well as GameSpy.com, and GameSpyDaily.com.
And then there are "Spotlights", full page network news items, promotion in the Flash area of each genre site, "of the Week" items...the list is almost endless. There's also plenty of opportunity for you to get exposure for your site using GameSpy Arcade, our free multiplayer gaming service. Your site will also be linked anywhere there's an opportunity for it -- from game profiles on our sites to FilePlanet and GameSpy.com.
It boils down to this: the more work you put into your site, the more promotion and exposure we give you. [back to top]
8. Can I host other sites on my own hosted site?
Yes, you can -- within certain limits (for instance, we don't want a hosted
site hosting Quake mods when we do that on PlanetQuake). However, all new
sites must conform to the same hosted site guidelines, and new sites must
also be approved by GameSpy. Check with your Genre Producer/GameSpy contact if you have a
new site in mind, or if you have any questions. [back to top]
9. I'm going to make a mod for Game X, but I have to get coders, modelers, and mappers. We haven't worked on it yet. Can I get hosting?
The answer to this question is a lot like the answer to some previous questions: we need to see some work before we can host you. Lots of people have great ideas for mods, but getting the mod done is usually the hard part. We recommend that you get a team and at least get a small working beta with some screenshots that we can see. [back to top]
10. I have a general gaming news Web site. Can I get it hosted?
There are already quite a few general gaming news Web sites, such as Blue's News and The Shugashack, and our very own GameSpyDaily.com. So no, we're not looking to host any. We're also not looking to host sites that try to cover games in a similar way to our planet sites. For instance, if your Web site covers Quake mods, mapping, mod news, files, skins, models, and more, we aren't looking to host it -- we already do that at PlanetQuake. [back to top]
11. You already have a site dedicated to the same game my site is. Can I still get hosted?
If you have a Web site dedicated to a specific game that we don't have a Planet site for already, then in general we're not looking to host a second one if we already have a hosted site for it. But if our hosted site is old and outdated, give us a shout -- we might be willing to take yours on as a replacement. [back to top]
12. I want to make a site and I want you to host it, but I don't have any Web space to put it up so you guys can look at it. Help!
There are a few free Web-space providers that you should check out -- GeoCities.com and NBCi.com are just a couple we can name right off the bat. You should get your complete site uploaded to one of these free Web hosts so that you can include a URL in your hosting e-mail for us to check out. [back to top]
13. Can I just zip up my entire site and e-mail it to you?
For the love of all that is holy, NO. Please don't. That will strain our e-mail clients, our resources, and our patience. Please put your site on a free Web host and then give us a URL to look at. [back to top]
14. What types of sites don't you host?
As already mentioned, if we already cover a topic well on our network, we are not likely to host sites that provide the same function, such as general news sites. We do not provide hosting to clan or guild sites. We also do not host tools, trainers, or programs that could be used to cheat in games online. Warez sites are also not welcome on our Network.[back to top]
1. How much Web and FTP space will I have?
Unlimited. Yep, that's right - you get unlimited Web space and FTP space. That's one of the cool advantages you get for being hosted by the GameSpy Network. [back to top]
2. Will I get an e-mail account, too?
Yes, you'll get e-mail addresses for you and anyone else working on your site. The e-mail address depends on where you get hosted -- if you're hosted at 3DActionPlanet, you'll have an @3dactionplanet.com address. If you're at PlanetQuake, you'll have an @planetquake.com address. [back to top]
3. I want to do ASP/PHP/CGI scripts, etc. on my site. Can I do that?
Yes, you can! We have full support for ASP/SQL/Access in an NT
environment, and PHP3/4, MySQL, and Perl on our Unix systems. [back to top]
4. Can I put forums on my site?
Yes, you can! We have just finished developing our new forum system, ForumPlanet, and are currently rolling it out to selected sites. [back to top]
5. Can I have a domain name for my site?
One of the things we're proud of at GameSpy is the fact that we have a recognizable name and quality hosted sites that we give a lot of promotion to. Unlike many other networks, when you come to a GameSpy site you know you're on the GameSpy Network -- we don't just ask that our sites slap an ad banner up and call it good.
This is why we ask that our hosted sites not use a separate domain. One of the "branding" goodies you get is the fact that you have a GameSpy site URL -- it tells your visitors that you're on the GameSpy Network (so you MUST have a cool site, right?). This helps to reinforce something we're proud to have built up here: community.
If you're a site that already has a domain name, that doesn't preclude you from hosting. We simply ask that to get all the cool benefits of being hosted on our network, you forward the domain to your GameSpy URL. You're still welcome to use that URL when you tell your friends about your site, so you can still get the glamour of having your own domain name! [back to top]
6. Does GameSpy use Windows or Linux servers?
We use the Windows NT and 2000 environment to run our servers. However, we do have Linux resources for those sites that require it. [back to top]
1. Do I have to run your ad banners?
Yes, running our ad banners is one of the few unbendable rules in being hosted on the GameSpy Network. Banners must appear near the top of every page. [back to top]
2. Will you pay me for running your ads on my Web site?
GameSpy does not pay its hosted sites for running ads.
Hang on, the answer is in the next question. [back to top]
3. Other networks pay their hosted sites for running ad banners, but you guys don't. So why should I get hosted by you?
You might have heard that other networks will pay you a CPM, or cost per thousand, for how many ads are served to your visitors per month. You might also have noticed that a lot of networks doing this are either out of business or well on their way toward it.
This is why GameSpy doesn't do that. Instead, we offer you free hosting, unlimited Web and FTP space, and lots of exposure on our network, as well as the security of knowing you'll have a home for a long time. For doing something you love to do for fun, you can't beat that. [back to top]
4. I'm trying to make some money running my site. Can I put non-GameSpy banners on it?
We don't allow our sites to run non-GameSpy banners. We know that some people want to make money with their sites, but running someone else's banners would compete with our own business commitments. [back to top]
5. Can we sell ads or be part of paid affiliation program on our site?
No. GameSpy handles all the advertising for the Network and, thus, you can't run other ads or paid affiliations (such as Amazon.com or AllAdvantage). If another company is interested on advertising on our network, have them contact firstname.lastname@example.org. [back to top]
1. I want to run PlanetGameName. How can I do that?
If we have a Planet site you're interested in working on, you should e-mail that Planet site's site director and let him or her know you'd like to help out. Many of our Planet sites are run by volunteers, just doing it because they love the game and want to run a site on a respected network and get exposure for it. They're usually very happy to get interested people to help out with the site.
If you're interested in running a Planet site we don't have yet, e-mail email@example.com and let us know you're interested and why you think you'd be a good candidate. We don't make Planet sites for every game, but if we've got one on our radar, we might be on the lookout for people who would be good candidates to run it. [back to top]
2. I want my site to be PlanetGameName. Can I do that?
Some of our hosted sites have become some of the best Planet sites on our network. An example is PlanetAvP, which used to be AvP World, a hosted fan site on 3DActionPlanet. The game had become so popular and the staff had done such great work on the site that we worked with them to turn it into PlanetAvP. This was also true of AoE Atrium, which became PlanetAgeofEmpires, and of Deus Ex Incarnate, which became PlanetDeusEx.
We almost never take a new hosted site and immediately make it a Planet site. A lot of thought, work, and planning goes into the making of our Planet sites because they're our star sites. So the short answer you're looking for is probably no, at least not right away. [back to top]
3. Can a hosted site ever "get promoted" to a Planet site?
Yep -- see the previous question. Whether or not your site is promoted to a Planet site is completely dependent on how much work you do, how popular the game is, and what kind of community surrounds it. [back to top]
4. I notice you have PlanetGameName.com reserved. Are you planning on making a site for it? Can I help?
We don't make Planet sites for every game, even if we've reserved the URL. But you're welcome to e-mail us and let us know you're interested in working on one if we do for a game you're interested in. Tell us why you think you should work on the site and we'll give you a shout if we do make a Planet site for the game. [back to top]
5. What's the difference between a hosted site and a Planet site?
Planet sites are GameSpy-created, GameSpy-owned, and GameSpy-operated. Hosted sites, on the other hand, are completely owned and operated by the people who create and run them -- GameSpy will never own any of the design, content, or anything else on your hosted site. You're free to do what you like with it, provided you stick to the hosting agreement rules. [back to top]
This FAQ didn't answer ANY of my questions. What do I do now?!
If you're still in the dark about something, have no fear - we're here to help you. Send your question to firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll get it answered right away. Who knows, if it's a question we think belongs in this FAQ, we might even give you a GameSpy t-shirt for helping us make this more useful. [back to top]