High Vs Low Rates in Maplestory Private Servers

An infographic comparing and contrasting rates in maplestory private servers

One of the freedoms that come with playing on your own maplestory private server is the choice to decide what rate(s) you want to play on.  Typically people modify the original exp and drop rates and usually make them higher than 1x.  In this post I want to talk about the different rates in maplestory private servers and which ones I think are most optimal for a private server’s long term health.

The 4 different tiers of rates in Maplestory Private Servers

In the community, we currently have 4 different rate types: low, medium, high, and custom.  Low rate servers are 3x and below, medium are 4x to 16x, and anything 16x and above would be considered high rate.  Some servers are extremely high rate (i.e. offer 100x or even 1000x).  

Custom rate servers change the exp rate depending on your level, some servers make your exp rate progressively higher (like maplems) or progressively worse (like old school maple or mapledestiny).  I would still say that you can classify custom rate servers into low, medium, or high rate based on the average rate that you experience when playing said server – though it is certainly more complicated.

Low rates In maplestory Private Servers and the insane grind

A player complaining about getting items with low rates in maplestory private servers

In terms of long term server health, its without a doubt that low rates are typically the better choice.  When your rates are low, the game has a much longer life cycle (it takes much more time for players to reach end game, farm equips, etc).  It takes longer for players to accomplish their goals on low rate servers which typically leads to a longer playtime before things begin to get dull.

The economy is less prone to inflation and typically stays more consistent over time.  Essentially when items are scarce and meso production is low (due to low rates), mesos and items retain value over time which promotes a stable economy.

However, low rates have a huge drawback – they require a significant time investment from any player to accomplish any meaningful task.  Simply leveling to third job can take upwards of 50 hours on a 2x rate server.

On a 1x server expect that figure to be over 100 hours.  Many players right now simply do not have the time to grind it out on a 1x or 2x server for what seems like very little reward, even though the end result is probably the most stable and rewarding.

As a result, even though low exp rates are most conducive to long term server health, they are not what is necessarily best to cultivate a playerbase, which is probably the most important thing for a maplestory private server.

Medium rates In Maplestory Private Servers – The Lukewarm Compromise

Medium rates are, in my opinion probably the optimal rates for a maplestory private server.  By making the initial rates higher, players feel like they are making meaningful progress for the time they put into the grind.

Unfortunately, when the drop rates are also put at a medium rate, the economy can easily be devastated by inflation where mesos lose all value and end game items become currency.  However, this does have some solution in the form of meso sinks (game features that destroy mesos).

Ultimately, however, I do think that medium rates are the best rate for a maplestory private server because it has just the right mix of extending the life of the server and making gameplay feel rewarding.

However, I would still argue that drop rates should be kept on the lower side, even if exp is allowed to wander to medium.

High Rates in maplestory private servers – The Instant Gratification

A player with a ton of equips with high rates in maplestory private servers

High rate servers are typically a very bad idea.  There is a reason that if you go look around you will see almost no active high rate servers.  

The problem with high rate servers is that players reach end game in an extremely short time, get bored with the server and quit.  This ultimately keeps the population very low and the servers usually die.

There are ways to properly execute high rate servers, but by doing so you would need to change the design of maplestory to inherently extend the games life cycle so that it still takes a significant investment to reach end game even with the higher rates.

The Optimal EXP, MESO, and DROP rate

I think that the best rates are 3x exp, 1x meso and 1x drop.  The 1x meso and 1x drop rates are required to make sure that the economy does not inflate out of control, and the 3x exp allows for a hard (but not impossibly difficult), yet rewarding grind.

The meso and drop rate need to be kept low because each player is essentially a meso printing machine.  The meso and drop rates basically define how quickly each player can print meso. If you want a server that can scale with a lot of players, you need to find a way to keep the economy from inflating into infinity – and keeping drop/meso rates low is a good way to accomplish this.

As for defining optimal exp, I will admit that it is largely preference.  I simply gravitate towards 3x because after having played on various servers of all sorts of rates, I found 3x to be the best mix between a difficult grind that still felt worthwhile.


Server exp, meso, and drop rates have long lasting ramifications down the road for a maplestory private server’s life cycle.  It is important to think about the effects each of these rates will have on your player base and economy.

Low rates are optimal for extending a servers life and maintaining a stable economy, but are not optimal for drawing in a large player base, as players typically tend to prefer higher rates.

Thus, as a server owner or player, it is ultimately up to you to decide what rates you want to play on and what is best for you.  I personally recommend the rates of 4x exp, 1x meso, and 1x drop because I feel that it is the best combination of rates in order to ensure a large player-base and a stable economy.

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