Realm versus Realm

Realm versus Realm (RvR) is a type of Player versus Player gameplay in Massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPG) where the player base is divided over multiple preset realms that fight each other over game assets.[1] This differs from normal Player versus Player combat in that Realm versus Realm usually involves a combat-based game, as opposed to one where sporadic Player versus Player combat occurs.[2][3] In this context, "realm" generally means a geographic territory or political affiliation.

This concept is also referred to as Group versus Group,[1] Race versus Race, Nation versus Nation, or Faction versus Faction depending on the specific implementation in the game under discussion. Contrast with "Guild versus Guild" games (or GvG, in an alternate usage from Group versus Group), such as Shadowbane or Age of Conan, in which players organize themselves into factions of their own creation and design rather than realms which are prebuilt by the game developers.


In 2001, Mythic Entertainment introduced a new team-based form of PvP combat with the release of Dark Age of Camelot and called it Realm versus Realm. In Realm vs Realm the rules would be similar to PvP combat. Where a single combatant or a group faces one another in PvP. RVR introduces entire Factions fighting each other. RvR was also made more interesting by bypassing the normal "red vs blue" type team battles seen in most games at the time. For RvR, they created a third faction to bring about a large scale "Rock-Paper-Scissors" experience. Last they chose to allow Realm vs Realm to be played out in an open world PvP environment known as the RvR zone. The RvR zone was a free to roam map where players had the choice of where to attack, when to attack, and with how many players. Complete battlefield freedom (even the freedom to not take part) allowed for RvR and DAOC to become one of the most successful MMOs of its time.

Other games

Mythic's newest MMORPG, Warhammer Online, is also an RvR game. It features the conflict between the realm of Order and the realm of Destruction as a core gameplay aspect.[4]

Many other MMORPGs include RvR elements without classifying themselves as a RvR game. Such titles include:

Three groups of characters that fight in designated PvP areas.[5]
Factions fight over specific regions.[6]
The different player created alliances fighting for control of regions of low security space also resembles RvR.[7]
Players of different nations can fight in Ballista battles.[8]
World vs. World combat. Three servers fight for control of an area called The Mists. This resembles Dark Age's system closer than any other to date. Including Warhammer Online.
Three nations fight for control of certain sectors.[9]
Players choose between the Olympus and Titan gods and fight for crystals in Sacred Wars.[10]
Players organize into bloodpledges that fight over control of castles.[5]
The three nations and the pirates fight over the control of certain ports.[11]
Three Realms fight against each other in war zone invading Forts and Castles.[12]
Three factions fight over the control of all battlegrounds.[13]
Three factions, The Terran Republic, The Vanu Sovereignty, and The New Conglomerate fight in islands for control over bases that lock and give bonuses to the side that owns them. Planetside is a First Person Shooter FPS style MMO that creates three-way battles, with everything from tanks, planes and stealth units.
The Federation and the Klingon Empire battle over star systems.
The sequel to Silkroad Online will be based on an RvR system.


  1. 1 2 Bartle, Richard (2003). Designing Virtual Worlds. New Riders. p. 407. ISBN 0-13-101816-7. Group versus Group (GvG). Players are members of groups that are in conflict with other groups. In a combat situation, this means PCs can fight any PCs who are members of enemy groups but not those who are members of their own (or a neutral) group.63 [...] 63This is often known as Realm versus Realm (RvR), as it was popularized under this name in Dark Age of Camelot.
  2. "Computerhope Jargon - Realm versus Realm".
  3. "MMORPG EXCLUSIVE - What is Realm vs. Realm?".
  4. "Warhammer Online - Key Features".
  5. 1 2 Bartle, Richard (2003). Designing Virtual Worlds. New Riders. p. 411. ISBN 0-13-101816-7. The term RvR comes from Dark Age of Camelot, but it's not the only virtual world to use this approach; indeed, it's not the only big, graphical world to do so. Anarchy Online has characters divided into three groups, with people meeting in PvP areas for combat. Lineage has clan-like groups called bloodpledges, which can conquer castles from one another in (scheduled) sieges; success here has material results, in that owners of castles get tax income they can invest in preparing for the next siege.
  6. "EVE Online - Empyrean age Features".
  7. "EVE Online - Player owned Starbases".
  8. "Final Fantasi XI - Ballista".
  9. "Jumpgate Evolution - Dev talks about Sector Control".
  10. "Legend of Edda".
  11. "Pirates of the Burning Sea - Conquest".
  12. "Regnum Online".
  13. "Shattered Galaxy - Game Info Tour".
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