Team Fortress 2 Server Hosting (2021)
Last updated: April 15, 2021
Game server companies have been around since the turn of the century when a few clever techies noticed a gap in the market. People were having to rent out physical servers in data-centers, install the dedicated server files then maintain these machines themselves. Game server providers sprang up who could automate all of the hard stuff and make it easy and instant for gamers to own their own dedicated game server – so you could focus on enjoying the game itself.
There have been companies providing Team Fortress 2 server hosting for ages now and it’s easy to find a well-priced offering that’s ideal for your needs. The problem is sifting through the hundreds of potential companies to find your perfect match.
This is where I come in. I tested the 47 most popular TF2 server hosting providers and compiled them and broke them down to the top 5 below.
How to choose the best Team Fortress 2 server hosting provider
I have broken down the requirements to these important few:
- The total cost per month
- The ease of setting it up
- Performance of your server under load
- Adding mods to your server
- The support-ticket waiting time
- Extra features in control panel
I use that list to gauge the potential top providers and have summarised the 9 that I believe is the best below.
For a more in-depth explanation of what I use to find the best provider check out my supporting guide here.
The Best 9 TF2 Server Hosting Companies
Let’s get right down to my top 9 that I have determined to be the best TF2 server hosting providers from the 47 I initially tested.
GameServers.com - The Best All Round TF2 Host
Ranks #1 of 9 TF2 hosts
Back by a huge data-center company
Host lots of different games
Provide hosting directly to game companies
Possibly the oldest game hosting company
Servers in every region
They don't pay for their Truspilot account
High price compared to others
Control PanelVideo Tour Image Slideshow
The true godfather of the game hosting world is GameServers.com, they have been around since the start of the Millennium. They seem to lack a bit on the front-end, with an outdated website and checkout system – but make up for it with a premium TF2 server hosting offering.
These guys know what they are doing and have a rock-solid architecture behind the scenes. They are known for providing game server hosting to game developers who need public servers that you can find in many in-game server lists.
GameServers.com is a bit pricey though but you get what you pay for. They also offer many worldwide locations without you having to pay an additional fee.
Nitrous Networks - The Best US TF2 Host
Ranks #2 of 9 TF2 hosts
Backed by a large gaming brand
Easy to use modern website
Less locations to choose from
On the lower end of the price spectrum is Nitrous Networks, a well-known premium provider.
They do lack global server locations though but support was quick and I found their control panel to be easy to use.
Once I had got through the checkout process I was emailed the important information that I mark as “important” in my Gmail along with the other TF2 hosts I was testing for later.
GTX Gaming - The Best Budget TF2 Host
Ranks #3 of 9 TF2 hosts
For a budget provider, GTX Gaming didn’t skimp on the TF2 server hosting they offer. The server performed great and my friends who joined on it agreed the experience was smooth.
Support was quick and the technical help they offered sorted my test issues out quickly.
From landing on their website through to checkout and control panel I found GTX Gaming to be a great host for TF2.
The only real downside I found was that if you are not in the usual English-speaking countries you may have to pay a premium for a server location near you.
Streamline Servers - The Best Global TF2 Host
Ranks #4 of 9 TF2 hosts
Passionate about server performance
Usually pretty expensive
The kings of performance, if you are after a hardcore Team Fortress 2 server hosting package then Streamline Servers are your ideal choice.
The support was top notch with my test tickets answered in minutes of sending. Luckily though the price was near the middle in terms of “price per slot” but the performance was easily pushing the rest behind.
You are also spoilt for choice when it comes to server locations, this company has data-centers around the world and in locations, others don’t seem to usually tread.
If you are looking for a serious TF2 dedicated server provider and don’t mind spending a bit more than the cheaper providers then I recommend Streamline Servers.
Ping Perfect - The Best UK TF2 Host
Ranks #5 of 9 TF2 hosts
Support a community of Twitchers
Wide range of games
Lots of global locations
Support was a little slow
The guys at Ping Perfect were a great help when I sent them some test support requests, they got back fairly quickly with in-depth answers. I love it when a game hosting company is willing to take the time to explain things to you!
Another bonus of hosting your TF2 server with this company is that they are the cheapest provider on the list when you compare by “price per slot”.
If you are based in South America or Russia then you will be happy to know that Ping Perfect has data-center locations in these regions, for a smoother gaming experience.
GameHosting.co - The Best Niche Specialist TF2 Host
Ranks #6 of 9 TF2 hosts
Niche game provider
Not as established as bigger companies
A newer game hosting company that maintains niche game servers as well as Valve games like TF2.
GameHosting.co is on the cheaper end of the scale when it comes to price per slot on these servers.
The service is no-frills yet the support is friendly and fast enough to help with the test issues I threw their way.
They only offer servers in the USA and EU regions though and they are primarily an English-speaking company.
Their Trustpilot score is low but they don’t pay for a premium account where they could be deleting negative reviews. The negative reviews they seemed to have gained are for their VPS packages rather than game servers.
Nodecraft - The Best Free Trial TF2 Host
Ranks #7 of 9 TF2 hosts
Niche game provider
With a beautiful custom website and control panel, I found my time testing Nodecraft pleasant.
It seems this provider offers some great features but you do have to pay a slight premium for them.
All in all considering the speed of my server and the support getting back to me I would say that they are good value for money.
What’s great about Nodecraft as well is, they offer many locations for your server to live all around the world, bringing down pings and reducing lag.
Fragnet - Best Multi Language TF2 Host
Ranks #8 of 9 TF2 hosts
Lots of server locations
Server hosting experts
Backed by a large server company
Expensive starter package
Fragnet is a well-established game hosting company with prices on the higher end of the scale when compared to others on this list.
I found their servers pretty fast but they failed pretty bad when I sent 3 test support tickets, they could have been having a bad day but I wasn’t impressed.
They do have the added benefit of being trusted by big game publisher brands, they are official Battlefield server hosts.
Fragnet does have worldwide server locations so where ever you are almost guaranteed a low ping.
Alforge - The Best Support TF2 Host
Ranks #9 of 9 TF2 hosts
A more Minecraft-focused game hosting company, Aleforge is a newer company that has a focus on a small catalogue of games.
The server was fast enough during my tests but didn’t wow me, the support was friendly but did take a while to get back to me.
In terms of server locations, you will find that if you are not in Europe or North America you are not near a data-center.
Aleforge is fairly cheap and they do a lengthy free trial so they have that going for them.
Important TF2 Hosting Features
When choosing a provider for your Team Fortress server be sure to check that they have support for these important features.
Of course, these aren’t the only features you need to pay attention to but they are important.
Memory & CPU Limitations
Having your server’s CPU or memory limited can kill your community.
Check to make sure that you don’t have these limitations in place as a laggy server will cause people to leave your server.
A super-fast experience for the players that connect to your TF2 server is important for them to keep coming back again and again.
I hope you now feel spoilt for choice if you are looking for Team Fortress 2 server hosting. The providers above should give you a good range of options if you are planning on having a casual or popular community server.
Once you have your new dedicated server for TF2 you are most probably going to want to start filling it with players. I have prepared a follow-up article for you to read next for promoting your TF2 server. I hope you find it useful, I enjoyed creating it!
My Hosting Review Process:
1. Find 47 popular Team Fortress 2 Server Hosting providers
2. Buy a basic package and set it up
3. Run speed tests on server
4. Compare the features vs. cost