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As mentioned in a previous post (Matchmaking - Under the Hood), we are unhappy with some aspects of our matchmaking system. I do recommend reading the previous post as well if you are interested in some of the underlying mechanics of online matchmaking systems. We now have a revamped system in development that is working quite well after some testing, and I’d like to share some details.
There are three main issues with the old system that this revamp is aiming to address:
- Lack of clarity on why you are getting matched against a certain opponent
- Gaining low amounts of medals when playing a new faction
- Some players get into a situation where they lose much more medals than they win in pretty much all games
The old system has three underlying MMR values (one for each faction), used to determine the power of the player, and one unified medal value determining your league. When playing multiplayer battles the amount of medals gained depend on how high the MMR is for the played faction, and how far apart the MMR and the unified medal value is.
This causes the aforementioned issues in the following way:
- Since the underlying MMR is hidden, it may be confusing to be matched with an opponent with much higher rank than you, even though they may be playing a faction that has a much lower rank and you are equal.
- When swapping to a new faction the medal count is very far away from the hidden MMR of the faction, leading to small medal gains until it catches up. This obviously feels very bad and looks like it’s pointless to play the faction, especially since you can lose medals and go down in league by doing this.
- It’s possible to get into a situation where all the faction MMR values are lower than the medals, resulting in skewed medal results in all games.
To solve this, we are revising the system to be more transparent and straightforward. Without further ado, I present to you… Factional Leagues:
Now each of your factions will have their own medal value, resulting in a different League for each faction depending on how well you do with them. Again, there is already an underlying MMR rating for each faction in the old system, but we wanted to make it more transparent.
Rewards and Leaderboard placement is based on the best faction. This too is mechanically very similar to how the old system works, where your favored faction mostly determines your medals and when playing the other factions you get much lower rewards. This part of the formula is now gone, instead you have a more straightforward calculation for each faction and you should always gain/lose an amount of medals that makes sense based on your opponent.
This also makes it much clearer how you match up with your opponents, as you won’t have confusing cases where someone is playing a worse faction but they appear as very high rank. As a bonus it also allows for experimenting with factions you don’t normally play without risking dropping leagues and losing rewards.
Since I spoiled it with one of the screenshots above, here’s a quick teaser of another new feature coming in the next update- monthly rewards for playing ranked. At the end of each month you will receive a shipment based on the highest league you reached during that month, containing some pretty sweet loot! Although you will have to wait a bit to see what actually opening the shipment is like…