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Staxel Dedicated Server

Staxel Dedicated Server

Staxel is a somewhat new release on Steam, and there aren't many guides available for it just yet. While there are some hosting companies willing to host a game server for you, it's not widely known how to do this yourself. So, here's what you need:

Requirements

  • A computer running a fully-licensed copy of Windows to act as your server - this should be turned on 24/7
    • Staxel does not support Linux or MacOS just yet, so this guide doesn't deal with those at the moment
    • This guide assumes that you're running the latest version of Windows - that's Windows 10, or Windows Server 2016
  • A legitimate copy of Staxel - this guide assumes you own it on Steam, as we'll use Steam to keep it up to date
    • Naturally, this means you'll also need a Steam account. If you can afford it, it is recommended that you have a separate Steam account with a copy of Staxel, just for hosting servers, as your account's password will need to be stored with it

How It Works

Essentially, we're going to be setting you up with a copy of SteamCMD. SteamCMD is basically a command-line version of Steam, designed for keeping game servers up to date on machines where you don't necessarily want to run a full copy of Steam.

Getting Started

This guide assumes a certain level of familiarity with Windows administration, but I've tried to keep it as friendly as possible.

  1. Ensure that Windows Explorer is set to show file extensions - you can turn this on from the View tab in File -> Folder and Search Options, from any folder
  2. Download SteamCMD from this link
  3. Create a folder for Steam - we'll use C:\steam\steamcmd in this guide, but feel free to change it as appropriate.
  4. Create a folder for your games - we'll use C:\steam\games in this guide, but again, feel free to change it as appropriate
  5. Extract steamcmd.exe from the zip file you downloaded in Step 1, and place it within C:\steam\steamcmd
  6. Add C:\steam to your PATH
    • Open This PC or My Computer as appropriate for your version of Windows
    • Right-click a blank area of the window and select Properties
    • Select Advanced System Settings
    • In the window that appears, select the Advanced tab, and hit Environment Variables
    • Under System Variables (The lower section), select the PATH entry, and click Edit
    • Click Add and type C:\steam into the box it gives you
    • Save all your changes and close the windows you just opened
  7. Create a file in C:\steam named steam.bat and insert the following:
    @ECHO off
    cd C:\steam\steamcmd
    steamcmd %*
  8. Open a command prompt or Powershell, type steam and hit enter - This will download Steam and you will be presented with a Steam> prompt
  9. Log into your Steam account with login account_name - for example, if your Steam username is bananas, you'd type login bananas and hit enter
  10. SteamCMD will ask for your password - type it in and hit Enter. Nothing will appear as you type your password, but don't worry: it is working
  11. Follow the instructions shown to authenticate with Steam Guard
  12. Type quit and hit enter

Congratulations, you now have SteamCMD set up on your machine.

Preparing Staxel

Now that you have SteamCMD installed and set up, you're ready to install Staxel. Create a file named update_staxel.bat in C:\steam and insert the following:

@ECHO off
steam +login ACCOUNT_NAME PASSWORD +force_install_dir C:\steam\games\staxel +app_update 405710 +quit

Replace ACCOUNT_NAME with the username you log into Steam with, and PASSWORD with the password for that username.

Open a command prompt or Powershell, type update_staxel, and hit enter. This will download and set up Staxel in C:\steam\games\staxel, as if you'd done so with Steam yourself. You can also run this at any point to update Staxel manually.

Next, open up C:\steam\games\staxel, and look at the _CommonRedist folder. This folder contains everything Staxel requires to be installed prior to running it. You'll need to install these requirements by running the following files:

  • DirectX: DirectX\Jun2010\DXSETUP.exe
  • .NET: DotNet\4.5.2\NDP452-KB2901907-x86-x64-AllOS-ENU.exe
    • This is already bundled with later versions of Windows, so don't worry if it refuses to install for that reason
  • Visual C Redistributable: vcredist\2013\vcredist_x64.exe and vcredist\2013\vcredist_x86.exe
    • If you're not running 64-bit Windows, the former will fail. This is fine, keep going!
  • XNA: XNA\4.0\xnafx40_redist.msi

Once these are all installed, there's only one thing left to do to prepare Staxel. Within C:\steam\games\staxel, find Staxel.ServerWizard.exe. Drag it to your desktop, holding the ALT key before letting go of the mouse button. This will create a shortcut to the server wizard on your desktop. Do the same thing with Staxel.ModManager.exe, and rename the two shortcuts as appropriate.

Running The Server

There's a few points to remember when running your server.

Networking

The default Staxel port is 38465.

If you're sitting behind a router, you're going to need to forward the Staxel server port. How you do this is going to depend on the make and model of your router - if you're not sure how to do this, you'll have to check the label on the router, and ask Google how to port forward with your specific router. Unfortunately, there are so many routers, it'd be impossible to cover them all in this guide.

If you're running on a remote server in a datacentre, you can most likely skip that step.

If you're running a third-party firewall (such as Avast), you'll also need to check whether you need to allow that port through it. If you don't have one installed, Windows Firewall will prompt you to allow access to the port when the server starts up for the first time.

World Storage

Staxel saves your server's world under specific names. When you open the server wizard, it will ask you for a StorageName value. If you decide to run multiple worlds, you'll need to change this value - make sure you keep track of what you set it to!

Whenever you want to load a specific world, just change the StorageName value back to the name of the world.

Configuration

When you start the server wizard, you're presented with a number of options:

  • Public: Enabling this will show your server on the public server list. If you don't want strangers joining your server, keep this disabled
    • If you're using Hamachi or another virtual LAN solution, make sure this option is disabled, or they won't be able to connect
  • Creative Mode: You can enable or disable Creative Mode here. There are three options:
    • On will force Creative Mode to be turned on
    • Off will force Creative Mode to be turned off
    • Keep Server Setting will use whatever you set for Creative Mode when the world was last used
  • Server Name: The name of your server on the public server list - if you've turned off the Public option, this will be greyed out
  • Port: The port to listen for connections on - this defaults to 38465, and you shouldn't need to change it
  • Password: If you want to prevent people from connecting without a password, you can enter that password here
  • Allow unauthenticated players: If you enable this, players that are playing the game in offline mode may connect to the server. This will be greyed out if the server is public. It's not recommended that you enable this as it can make your server insecure
  • Attempt automatic UPnP portforwarding: If your router supports UPnP port-forwarding, this option will attempt to save you some time and have the server forward the port automatically. Unfortunately, this won't work on a majority of routers
  • StorageName: Set this to the name of your world, and don't forget it! If you only ever intend to run a single world on your server, you can leave this blank

You can test your port forwarding settings by clicking the Test Port button and waiting for a moment. The box to the right of the button will contain the result of this test. If the test fails, then nobody will be able to connect to your server from machines not on your network!

Once you've verified that your port forwarding is working, take note of the Your External Server Address box. This contains the IP address that players can use to connect to your server - this IP will correspond with the IP of the machine you're running the server on.

Note: If you have a dynamic IP address, the address that players need to connect to will change. You can deal with that using a dynamic DNS service, such as no-ip.net. This will give you a domain name instead of an IP address - simply give that domain name to your players.

Those of you with a static IP address can use a domain name pointed to that address as normal.

Mods

Mods are available to use in multiplayer. If you're using mods, then you will also need to install them on the server - You can use the Staxel mod manager in the usual way to do this.

While mods may be downloaded from the server, only cosmetic mods may be obtained in this way at the moment. If you're using a mod that includes any code, you'll need to have each of your users install that mod themselves. Steam Workshop is great for this!

To download Workshop mods on your server, try Steam Workshop Downloader.

Running and Administering Your Server

Once you've finished configuring your server in the server wizard as shown above, you're ready to get started! Click the Start Server button and the server will start up in a new window. However, don't announce it just yet - make sure you connect to your server before anyone else.

The first person to join the server is the administrator of the server. Administrators get Farm Fan's tutorial, and access to a set of admin commands (detailed below).

Anyone else that joins the server is given a pet kit and 800 Petals. They can go to the store and buy their tools as needed.

When you're done with the server, you can go to the server window and press CTRL + C to stop it. Be patient - only do this once, as the server takes a moment to save all its data.

Admin Commands

  • /fly - Enable flight
  • /op username - Give someone else admin access
  • /noclip - Enables flight and allows you to fly through the ground and other solid objects
  • /tp player_1 player_2 Teleport player_1 to player_2
  • /givepetals - Spawn in some extra money for a player
  • /stealpetals - Take away money from a player

Updating Your Server

To update your server, follow these steps:

  1. Stop your server by going to the window and hitting CTRL + C once, and waiting for it to finish
  2. Open a command prompt or Powershell, type update_staxel, and hit enter
  3. If you're using mods, open the mod manager and ensure that all your mods are installed and working
  4. Open the server wizard, make sure your server is configured correctly, and start your server again

You're ready to go!

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