Minecraft has made a household name for itself, and if you’ve ever spent any time dodging zombies or mining for iron ore, you probably know why it’s so popular.
In the past couple of years, it’s become more common for people to set up their own Minecraft servers, especially if they plan to play with large groups of friends. However, finding the best Minecraft server hosting site can be tricky, but that’s where we come in. Check out these top five hosting sites below:
Table of Contents:
- What Exactly is Minecraft?
- Minecraft Hosting Server Requirements
- Benefits of Minecraft Server Hosting
- Features to Consider in Minecraft Servers Hosting
The Best Minecraft Server Hosting Options:
- GG Servers
- APEX Hosting
- Final Notes for Gamers
Minecraft Server Hosting:
What Exactly is Minecraft?
For newbies to the franchise, Minecraft might feel like a trip to the past. Instead of the flashy visuals, you’d expect from other game servers, Minecraft looks like “virtual legos.” The simple graphics make Minecraft easy to use for a lot of fans, and it allows for more innovation than you’d expect.
From using survival mode to avoid the zombies that come out at night to building elaborate structures in the Minecraft world, there’s more to do than a new fan might expect.
With so many fans, the gaming franchise made its way onto almost every platform you can imagine. Whether you have an old PC or an iPad, there’s a way for you to play Minecraft.
If you’re thinking about building your own Minecraft server, it’s unlikely that you’re new to the franchise. Most people willing to put in the time and money into a server have a lot of gaming experience, but that’s not an explicit requirement. (Note: if you’re not sure how to play Minecraft, try checking out some of the video tutorials on Youtube).
There’s nothing wrong with playing solo, but a lot of Minecraft gamers enjoy playing with friends. There’s a lot of appealing features in Multiplayer mode: you can wage war against other players, join your friends on adventures, or even just find a little spot to build in the Minecraft world.
Accessing Multiplayer mode isn’t usually too hard, and there’s a couple of different ways you can get there:
- Using Local Area Networks (LAN): If other players happen to be in the same room or house, you can utilize the Local Area Network to play together.
- Taking Advantage of Minecraft Realms: Minecraft Realms is a concept created by the game developers to let players host their own games on server hosting. However, it is subscription-based, and not readily available to everyone.
- Split Screen: Split Screen only works if you’re using a console, and it only lets you add less than five players to your game.
- Online Server: You always have the option to set up your own server hosting, but the process is a little more complicated. This is the hosting method we’ll be getting into in this article.
Requirements for Minecraft Server Hosting
For some users, hosting a game can be challenging, especially since your server will probably take up more resources than most applications. If you’re short on space, that can be a problem. Ultimately, Minecraft hosting can be as simple or complicated as you make it. What we’ll be talking about here is what Minecraft users refer to as “Pure Vanilla” hosting.
For “Pure Vanilla” hosting, which lets you add up to 10 players to your server, here are the basic specifications you’ll need:
|Minimum Requirements||Recommended Requirements|
As you’ll see above, you’ll need at least 1GB RAM storage, but you’ll be better off if you have more storage space than that. If you’re really serious about hosting Minecraft server and want to add 50 players or more to your server, you’ll definitely need more storage than this (in this case, a VPS plan from Hostinger or a similar hosting service can offer the storage you need).
Benefits of Minecraft Server Hosting
To the average player, hosting your own server might seem like a lot of trouble – so, what are the perks? Well, there are more advantages to Minecraft hosting than you might think:
Choosing Your Own Mods
Most experienced players have certain mods they enjoy, and it’s frustrating if the game or server you’re playing on doesn’t have the mods you want. One major perk that comes with having your own gaming server hosting is that you’ll get to pick out what mods you want (and which ones you don’t).
Fostering a Community
A lot of people enjoy building Minecraft hosting servers because they’re also getting to build a community. Your friends might be physically around the world, but by hosting your own server, they can be right next to you.
Picking Your Own Rules
If you’re dealing with a Minecraft server, you’ll probably want to establish some rules. Even small game servers that only have ten players will likely have some guidelines. As the server creator, you get to pick what kind of environment your Minecraft server will be. You’re standing at the figurative (and literal) control panel.
This is especially appealing to players that might have left other servers because they didn’t like what rules were enforced by the creators.
Use it as a Teaching Tool
More and more educators are beginning to realize that they can use Minecraft as a teaching tool. With your own Minecraft server, you can teach your students how to think creatively by using a game they’re probably already familiar with.
Hosting your own Minecraft server can be pricey, but the good news is that it has some potential for monetization. Microsoft covers some of the costs, and they’ll allow you to put in-game advertising or even set up your own store. While it’s unlikely that you’ll make too much of a profit (especially if you have small game servers), it can help offset some of the costs.
Features to Consider in Minecraft Hosting
Now that you understand the potential perks of hosting your own Minecraft server, let’s talk about what to look for in the best Minecraft server hosting. Keep in mind that most Minecraft servers don’t have instant setup, and they may require a low latency network if you’re planning to have tons of players.
You’ll need things like plenty of SSD storage and DDOS protection. This where hosting services like Hostinger or GG Servers can come in handy. Here’s what you should consider in a hosting plan:
Most web applications, Minecraft included, need quick processing time to run smoothly and efficiently. The more players you plan to add to your server, the more powerful you’ll want your processor to be. If you go with a shared hosting plan, your provider will split processing time up among all the other users. With a VPS or cloud hosting plan, however, you’ll get exclusive use of the processor.
We’ve already talked about how much RAM storage you’ll need for a small server, but it’s worth mentioning again. If you don’t have enough memory, you’ll definitely see the difference in your gameplay on the Minecraft server. Less memory means that your server will switch data in and out of your RAM more frequently, and you’ll end up with slower performance. The more memory you can get from your hosting provider, the better off you’ll be in the long run.
Storage Space & Type
Speaking of storage, disk space and SSD-based storage will work to your advantage. Keep in mind that some web hosts might offer SSD-based storage, but then use regular storage for your data. This is a different hosting plan than a full SSD solution.
You might not think the location of the data center will affect your gaming experience, but if it’s far enough away, it could. For instance, if you’re playing in the United States, but your server is all the way in Europe or Australia, you could experience a few delays in gameplay.
However, if your players are from around the world, there’s not much you can do about server location. Even if the server is close to you, it could be far from someone else. The data center location is worth paying attention to, but there’s not much you can do about it.
It’s unlikely you’ll end up with a server that’s within the same state. The benefit to Cloud Hosting is that these providers usually have servers anywhere in the world, and they can bounce between them.
When it comes to hosting, it’s a good idea to find a hosting provider with expertise. When you need to deal with customer service, you’ll be better off dealing with an experienced server host. Minecraft hosts aren’t incredibly common, but you still have plenty of hosting options for your server.
Avoid “Too Good to be True” Offers
If you come across hosting plans that seem to offer incredibly low rates, these offers might be too good to be true. Server hosts like this might be offering low-quality performance or a gameplay experience that doesn’t live up to expectations.
The Best Minecraft Server Providers: Top 5
When it comes to the top hosting deals on the internet, we’ve narrowed down the list to five competitors you can use to build your Minecraft server with:
|RAM: 2GB||Key Features:|
|# of Players: 70||
It’s often rare to find a hosting provider that offers Minecraft-specific plans, but Hostinger does. With 2GB of RAM memory on VPS servers, you’ll get the recommended requirements you need for most servers. Hostinger also comes with a money-back guarantee and great customer support.
While there’s no instant setup or unlimited slots, you’ll be able to host up to seventy players once you’ve got your Minecraft hosting up and running.
|RAM: 1GB||Key Features|
|# of Players: 20+||
While the operating system and web design of Shockbyte might not provide the same hosting experience as some competitors, this host does come with a lot of bonuses. Shockbyte does have host plans for Minecraft, and many of their options are very specific.
Although their server locations are in Australia, you shouldn’t experience too much of a delay in performance or server setup with this web hosting service. Their support staff also has an excellent reputation and can provide troubleshooting guides for your server plan.
|RAM: 1GB||Key Features:|
|# of Players: 12+||
BisectHosting is popular for Minecraft servers, specifically because they have a Java edition for you to use. Their hosting plans also come with unlimited storage, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble running your Minecraft server.
Keep in mind that BisectHosting does have a fair usage policy, so you want to make sure you’re not abusing their unlimited storage space.
|RAM: 1GB||Key Features|
|# of Players: 12+||
|Price: $0.50 per slot||
While GG Servers doesn’t offer any plans for large or expansive servers, it can be a great choice for a tight-knit Minecraft server between pals. You’ll only get 1GB of storage, so you’ll need to use it wisely. If you add more than twelve players to the Minecraft server, you could begin to experience delays.
|RAM: 1GB||Key Features|
|# of Players: 12+||
The good news is that Apex Hosting focuses solely on Minecraft, and they have plenty of expertise to offer. This host also comes with almost instant setup, so you can expect your server to be up and running in less than 10 minutes. If you have any questions, the support team can help you with concerns about the game server, the backup system, server files, or even issues related to your processors.
Conclusion: Final Notes for Minecraft Fans
|Website||RAM||# of Players||Monthly Prices|
Although hosting the best Minecraft servers can be tricky, it doesn’t have to feel impossible. If you go with one of the top-rated hosting companies above, you’ll have a lot of support and expertise to help you out. Even still, you probably won’t be able to host a server for hundreds of people, but you can get a few friends together.
Frequently Asked Questions about Minecraft
Is Minecraft Free?
Unfortunately, Minecraft is not free, and it’s licensed by Microsoft. Depending on the platform you choose to play it on, the cost of the game can vary. On the PS4, you can expect to currently pay $19.99 for Minecraft.
However, if you’ve got an Android tablet or mobile device, you can save a few bucks, and only spend $7 for the app. (Keep in mind that the performance might not be as great on a smartphone as it would be on a new PC or PS4).
Is hosting a Minecraft Server Free?
We’ve already covered this question pretty thoroughly, but just to clarify, hosting your own Minecraft game isn’t free. You’ll need to pay for things like infrastructure, hosting plans, and equipment. It’s hard to pin down an exact number, but if you’re hosting the server for a group of friends, you can ask them to chip in on the price.
Another thing you can do to offset costs is include in-game advertisements or create your own store. If you’re hosting strangers on your server, they might be interested in your store.
How Much RAM Will I Require for My Server?
You’ll notice that a lot of hosting plans start you off with 1GB of RAM storage, and if you’re only adding a few friends, that might be all you need. It’s worth noting that 1GB of storage is the minimum, and if you have any less than that, your gameplay will suffer.
When your processor constantly has to swap out data to make room for new data, your performance is going to lag, and it’ll make playing that much harder.
1GB is a great starting point for a lot of people, but if you’re going to host 50 or 70 people on the same server, you might want to invest in at least 2 or 3GB of storage. This will give you a much smoother playing experience, especially with this number of players.
When you’re choosing a hosting plan, you shouldn’t pick the plan with the most storage right away. Pick a plan that suits your needs based on the number of players you expect to have on the server.
Which is the Best Minecraft Server?
When it comes down to picking the best provider out of this list, we’d probably have to label Hostinger as our first choice. Not only do they offer an affordable plan that comes with expansive storage, but they have a reputable support team as well.
Even if you’re experienced in hosting servers or monitoring gameplay, it helps to have someone else there to deal with the potential issues you encounter. Hostinger’s management knows what they’re doing, and they have plans that cover everything from small servers to large servers that will require tons of processing power.
If you find that the service just isn’t right for you, Hostinger does offer you your money back for a limited amount of time. Once you have your refund, you’re free to try any of these other hosts on the list.
What is the Best Free Minecraft Host?
We don’t usually recommend that you go with a “free” plan, especially when you’re dealing with data storage, servers, and hosting. We’ve mentioned it before, but if something feels too good to be true, it probably is.
What might seem like a stellar free plan could be subpar processing power, poor performance, and a server that can’t hold more than a few players at a time. Not to mention, “free” hosts might not protect your data the same way a paid plan would.
Ultimately, free hosts are hard to come by, and if you do stumble upon a great offer, you might be better off exercising caution than jumping at the opportunity. Rather than taking the risk, you’ll probably save yourself (and your friends) a lot of time by going with an affordable paid plan.