Call of Duty: Black Ops III

Call of Duty: Black Ops III

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Official - Call of Duty: Black Ops III - How to Host a Dedicated Server - Workshop Guide
By TA_PCProd
Learn how to host a Black Ops III Unranked Dedicated Server.
Getting Started
With Update 18, we have added the ability to host your own Unranked Dedicated Servers.

To start, you will find two new items in the Tools section of your Steam Library, Call of Duty: Black Ops III - Dedicated Server and Call of Duty: Black Ops III - Remote Console. You do not need the game installed to run a dedicated server or the remote console tool.

Both new applications will install in your Black Ops III game folder, commonly found at C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Call of Duty Black Ops III

The unranked dedicated server will allow you to run your own servers, manage the content on those servers, admin who can play on the server, and much more. The unranked dedicated server can be run from the same computer running the game or from a completely separate computer. If your server is run through a server hosting company or simply on a different computer, the remote console allows you to manage your server from any machine regardless of where your server is running.

In the following two sections we will provide more specifics on how to run your server and manage it using the remote console tool.
Hosting an Unranked Dedicated Server - Launch / Admin
In this section we will cover how to run and configure your local unranked dedicated server. Game server hosting companies will likely offer the ability to host servers and the process to configuring these servers will be similar but those services will provide specific instructions.

Once you have the dedicated server files installed, you'll notice a handful of new files and folders in your game folder. All you need to do to start a server is double click the Launch_Server.bat file. This will automatically run a new server with some preset dvars to set name, description, playlist, etc.

Let's break down the current Launch_Server.bat file, statement by statement,
  • BlackOps3_UnrankedDedicatedServer.exe / Identifies the EXE to launch with the following settings
  • +set sv_playlist 1 / Sets the Playlist to use from the file in the machinecfg folder
  • +set fs_game usermaps / Sets the mod the server will load, usermaps is the default mod that can be run with user made maps. To load a different mod replace "usermaps" with the mod ID number which is the folder name for the mod in your steam workshop folder.
  • +set logfile 2 / Enables logging on the server, helpful for crashes or debug information. Setting 1 will buffer the write and 2 will not.
  • +set live_steam_server_name "Test Server" / Sets the server name
  • +set live_steam_server_description "This is a test server." / Sets the server description
  • +set live_steam_server_password "test" / Sets the server password
  • +rcon_password "test" / Sets the remote console password for connecting to your server via the remote console tool

After you have run the Launch_Server.bat file, a couple of new windows will appear. A command prompt window will appear executing the statements in your batch file. A CoD Black Ops III Server window will also appear. This is your server! From here you can see logging from the server and directly execute commands in the text box directly below the scrolling log output, known as the console.

The following is a list of commands that can be sent to the server either directly from the server's command line window or from the remote console tool. Simply type the command followed by it's relevant arguments and press enter.
  • exec / Run developer execution commands for mod development
  • gametype_setting %gametype setting% %gametype setting arguments% / Configure specific game settings commonly defined in the playlist file
  • devmap %map name% / Change map to specified map
  • map %map name% / Change map to specified map
  • fast_restart / Restarts current game
  • map_restart / Restarts current game
  • systeminfo / Reports information on the current system running the server
  • serverinfo / Reports current server information
  • status / Reports current server status including player list and IP addresses
  • clientkick %client's ID% / Kick client by server client ID number typically 0-17
  • unbanUser %user's steam ID% / Unban user via their Steam ID, will remove from ban file on server
  • kick %client's name% / Kick client by their name
  • banClient %client's ID% / Adds user by their server client ID number to ban list
  • banUser %client's name% / Adds user by their name to ban list
  • quit / Shuts down the server
  • lobby_list / Lists all clients in the lobby
  • lobby_ban %user's Steam ID%/ Bans user in lobby via the user's Steam ID
  • lobby_kick %user's Steam ID%/ Kicks user in lobby via the user's Steam ID
  • lobby_setgametype %game type name% / Switches the lobby game type
  • lobby_setmap %map name% / Switches the lobby map
  • lobby_nextmap / Switches lobby to next map in playlist
  • launchGame / Launches game regardless of number of users
  • gamesettings_generateconfig / Generates a config file in /local_storage/users, containing all the configured game settings
  • restrict_attachment %attachment ID% / Restricts attachment using attachment ID
  • restrict_item %item ID% / Restricts item (i.e. weapon, equipment) using item ID
  • set_gametype %game type name% / Change game type to specified game type

To clarify on the ban commands, when a user is banned a text file (ban.txt) will be added to the identities/dedicatedpc/main folder in your game folder that has the user's name and Steam ID. To unban a user you can either update this text file directly or use the unban server commond. You can also ban users by manually adding them to this text file as well.
Hosting an Unranked Dedicated Server - Playlist
Now that you know how to launch and admin your server, let's discuss the file. Located in the machinecfg folder within your game folder, the file contains all your Playlists. Playlists allow you to specifically configure the maps run on your server as well as the game types and their associated rules. An example file has been included to help you understand how this file is setup. Let's break down Playlist 1,
  • playlist 1 / Sets the Playlist number for reference in the Launch_Server.bat
  • rule party_minplayers 1 / Gametype Setting that sets the minimum players required for the server to start a match
  • mp_apartments,tdm / Adds mp_apartments running team deathmatch to the map rotation
  • mp_biodome,dom / Adds mp_biodome running domination to the map rotation
  • mp_apartments,ctf / Adds mp_apartments running capture the flag to the map rotation
  • mp_biodome,tdm / Adds mp_biodome running team deathmatch to the map rotation

Commonly you will add the gametype settings under the playlist number definition in the specific playlist, however you can add specific gametype settings in the top of the that will globablly be applied to all playlists.

Gametype settings allow the user to configure in the Playlist file the rules of their specified game type. This can include increasing round timer, changing the amount of points to win a round, and many other options. The following are all the available gametype settings. **If you use the custom game settings in game and run the gamesettings_generateconfig console command, a config file will be generated in your local_storage/users folder with all the gametype settings used.

// main

// player

// respawn

// scoring

// hud

// audio

// killstreaks

// vehicles

// perks

// game

// UI

// gamemode flags

Playlist Map Names
  • Multiplayer
    • mp_apartments (Evac)
    • mp_biodome (Aquarium)
    • mp_chinatown (Exodus)
    • mp_ethiopia (Hunted)
    • mp_havoc (Havoc)
    • mp_infection (Infection)
    • mp_metro (Metro)
    • mp_redwood (Redwood)
    • mp_sector (Combine)
    • mp_spire (Breach)
    • mp_stronghold (Stronghold)
    • mp_veiled (Fringe)
    • mp_nuketown_x (Nuke3town)
  • DLC1
    • mp_crucible (Gauntlet)
    • mp_rise (Rise)
    • mp_skyjacked (SkyJacked)
    • mp_waterpark (Splash)
  • DLC2
    • mp_aerospace (Spire)
    • mp_banzai (Verge)
    • mp_conduit (Rift)
    • mp_kung_fu (Knockout)
    • mp_arena (Rumble)
    • mp_cryogen (Cryogen)
    • mp_rome (Empire)
    • mp_shrine (Berserk)
    • mp_city (Rupture)
    • mp_miniature (Micro)
    • mp_ruins (Citadel)
    • mp_western (outlaw)
Couple important notes
  • We recommend always having at least one official map in your map rotation in case the Workshop map has issues
  • Playlists can get very complicated, it can help a lot to use source control for your playlists so you can track changes in case something stops working. This could be helpful for your Launch_Server.bat as well.
  • Antivirus and Firewall softwares can conflict with running an unranked dedicated server. Please make sure to attempt standard troubleshooting when experiencing issues with your unranked dedicated server or people attempting to join it.
Remote Console Tool
Whether you are running your server through a game server hosting service or running it on a separate computer in your home, the remote console tool (rcon) allows you to pass the same commands to your server as if you were running it locally. This allows you to switch maps, check your server's status, or ban naughty players from any computer running the rcon tool.

The following is a quick tutorial on how to start using the rcon tool. Once you have the rcon tool installed from your Steam Library, you will see a new executable in your game folder, BlackOpsRcon.exe. You can either launch this by running it in Steam or by double clicking the executable file.

Here's what you will see when you launch the tool,

To connect to your server, you'll need to enter the following information into the Quick Connect section,
  • Label / Name assigned to your server when saved, this can be any name to help you remember the specific server for your Saved Servers list
  • Host (IP) / The IP of machine running the server
  • Port / Default port is 27017, if running multiple servers on a single machine, you will need to assign them different ports and this can be defined in your Launch_Server.bat
  • Password / This is set in your Launch_Server.bat (+rcon_password)
To save your server's information, enter your server's information in the Quick Connect section and click Save to Server List. This will add a new entry to the Saved Servers list. Now you can simply click the row in the Saved Servers list and click Connect.

Once you connect to your server, you will see the following,

Here you can enter any server command in the console line and fully control your server. Please see the Hosting an Unranked Dedicated Server - Launch / Admin for a list of server commands.

You can update your saved servers list in the Remote Console tool by editting blackopsrcon.exe.servers file in your game directory.
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eyeeye Aug 12 @ 1:54pm 
I'm trying to run this on a separate machine I have a separate steam installed but the files are not showing in the tools any Idea how to get them on without buying the game
AssKicka Jan 19, 2018 @ 4:21am 
Anyone know how to setup SnD?


gametype sd
script sd

playlist 1

Does not seem to work...
ShiGGi Oct 10, 2017 @ 5:07am 
Can you load hardpoint for example as a gamemode if yes pls tell me how i think im to dumb to figure ist out
MrNipples. Aug 21, 2017 @ 7:08am 
How can I host one for zombies?
FakeCountry May 26, 2017 @ 10:21pm 
How do I do this for zombies?
^2C45P3R^4~FYANB~ Apr 25, 2017 @ 12:02pm 
If anyone needs additional help setting up your server check out my new guide here:
<82ndAB>Bravo17 Feb 12, 2017 @ 8:12pm 
New B3 parser on the forums - Kick, ban, and unban have been tested now, and should be working.

You do need to point B3 to the Console log rather than the new gameserver log since the new log is buffered and doesn't update quickly enough.
<82ndAB>Bravo17 Feb 11, 2017 @ 6:54pm 
I'm not sure, haven't been able to test banning/unbanning properly.

But B3 should kick any banned players that show up in the B3 db whether or not they show in the bo3 ban file.
^2C45P3R^4~FYANB~ Feb 11, 2017 @ 3:24pm 
Did they fix the bug where you if you banned someone it would reset the ban file?
<82ndAB>Bravo17 Feb 10, 2017 @ 9:24pm 
@ C45P3R~FYANB~ There is a beta parser available here, if you would like to try it. Please report any issues you find. You need the B3 v 1.10.x and be using source or egg install in order for it to work.