TL; DR: Apex Hosting, founded in 2013, aims to provide its Minecraft server hosting clients with the highest level of customer support every step of the way. Instant setup, an intuitive Multicraft Panel complete with video guides, advanced DDoS protection, and automated backups eliminate common pain points from the start. With ongoing development and plans for further global expansion, the company is set to help Minecraft fanatics worldwide enjoy multiplayer capability.
Seth Mattox and John Rendemonti live and breathe gaming.
They formed a bond at age 12 over the military science fiction classic Halo. As young adults, they set off to college, remaining avid gamers. And when the pair returned home as professionals with full-time jobs, they couldn’t resist developing tutorial videos for World of Warcraft Esports on the side.
Seth and John soon realized they were destined for a non-traditional career in the gaming industry all along. “We decided to start a project that would highlight our skill sets and prove we could build a successful company,” Seth said.
At the time, Minecraft — a virtual realm where users build their own imaginative, block-based landscapes — was well on its way to becoming the world’s most popular game. Naturally, gamers wanted to share their magnificent creations with other players, but doing so required access to a gaming server.
“We did some research on what it took to create these servers,” Seth said. “Using our expertise from two or three years of working online, we were able to manage our own network structure. My father had been maintaining datacenters since I was very young, so it was always part of our world.”
Thus, Apex Hosting was born in 2013. Since then, the pair has focused on customizing the platform so users of all skill levels can manage the Minecraft server of their dreams. And they did so through automatic setup, a user-friendly control panel, video guides, built-in DDoS protection, automated backups, and top-notch customer support.
“We put a lot into optimizing it to make sure that it’s exactly what the Minecraft community needs,” Seth said. “We’re really proud of it.”
Providing High-Quality Servers with Instant Setup Since 2013
Seth and John were smart: They approached the game server hosting market with business acumen as well as their gaming knowledge. “We wanted to define what it meant to be a real brand providing real value,” he said. “We did a competitive analysis of the market to determine if it was viable for us to compete with the services being offered.”
The outlook was positive. “We saw pretty clearly that support was lacking in this industry, particularly for something so technical with such a young audience,” Seth said.
John told us the game hosting market has its quirks. “The traditional hosting customer is pretty savvy: They know that they’re looking for a certain type of server,” he said. “Our customer is younger, mostly teenagers. They just want Minecraft server so they can play multiplayer. They don’t know what that actually entails.”
Seth and John analyzed their competition further and discovered that most providers lacked a robust knowledge base as well as live chat for one-on-one communication and reasonable customer service hours. So they decided to start their own company centered on support.
Over the course of almost six years, the pair created text and video-based tutorials to help guide younger and inexperienced users through the technical process. They also leveraged customer feedback to identify common pain points and optimize the system accordingly.
The approach worked wonders. “Along the way, we’ve seen a lot of competitors come and go, but no one seems to be able to offer the same balance of performance, price, and live support as we do,” Seth said.
An Apex-Customized Multicraft Panel with Video Guides
Users can manage their Minecraft server with Apex’s customized Multicraft control panel. “We ended up taking their template and customizing it,” Seth said. “There were inefficiencies in the original panel: Nested tables, structures, and multipage objects that could become single pages. It also lacked context.”
The panel includes a feature-rich interface that provides the tools users need to manage their Minecraft server with ease. Upon login, users access the dashboard, which offers quick access to essential tools and information such as the server time, the Craft-List, social feeds regarding news and updates, and server status.
It also includes mobile-friendly video tutorials that outline the functions on each page. “There’s almost always one in eyeshot,” Seth said. “We’ll describe what it is that you’re looking at, and on every tier, as you click through the panel, the sidebar updates to display new videos.”
The company aims to help users get up and running in as few clicks as possible. “We’ve put in a lot of effort to optimize the system and then keep it updated because everything — every single modpack — still gets daily or weekly updates in most cases,” Seth said. “Then we want to provide the system in the fastest, most efficient way possible at the best price you can get while still having support behind you.”
Seth told us the company’s top priority is its support system, followed closely by enabling customers to switch between different game types.
“We partner with Technic, one of the top four modpack distributors, and we also make our own game types, which we stream on Twitch,” he said. “Our focus is on the individual game type and the support behind it. If you know what it is and how to use it, great. We’re here to help if you don’t.”
High Uptime, Advanced DDoS Protection, and Automated Backups
Apex is continuously on the lookout for new technology that will enable the company to increase availability and protect customers from security threats.
“People in this industry are always under attack,” Seth said. “Minecraft is a weird niche where players have a light technical ability as well as the level of mischievousness you have at youth. So you get a lot of DDoS attacks and attempted brute-force entries, making an effective security layer very important.”
Apex safeguards users through advanced DDoS protection up to 300GBPS and automatic backups to guarantee users never lose data. If you require assistance, the company’s experienced support team — which John said consists of Minecraft fanatics — is available through live chat and a ticketing system.
“The guys on our support team are just unbelievably intelligent at setting up and running servers,” John said. “They blow us away every time.”
Seth said Apex is one of the only Minecraft server hosts that pay its support staff hourly rather than per response. “That adds a certain level of professionalism and allows us to retain at a higher level of quality,” he said.
The pair’s continued passion for gaming and the industry at large allows them to relate to customers. Seth and John also own a gaming furniture brand, OPSEAT, and are deeply involved in the influencer space on YouTube and Twitch. Seth is halfway through Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee! for Nintendo Switch and excitedly purchased Super Smash Bros. Ultimate the first day of its release.
Ongoing Development and Expansion into Asia, Eastern Europe
With plans for continual product development and increased global outreach, Apex has a busy year ahead. Earlier this year the company opened its Australia location and most recently made a new site in Singapore available complete with a test server.
“We’re excited about the new regions that we’re able to provide,” Seth said. “After establishing a stronger front in Australia and Singapore, we’re diving deeper into Eastern European countries. This is allowing us to have higher ping rates deeper in the world while bringing our products and our services to different time zones in different languages.”
The team is also looking to hire a Minecraft pro to develop, test, and play different game types live on Twitch. “There’s lots of tutorial-type stuff that we plan on going through while focusing on the creation aspect of it,” he said. “2018 has been a big year for us, and 2019 is going to be even bigger.”