Heroes of the Storm is a great MOBA, and one that has managed to break free of the illusion of being casual. Ranked paly is a big part of Blizzard’s MOBA, and it’s one that has been at the mercy of a matchmaking system that’s not getting everything as right as it should be. Blizzard know this, and they’re panning to completely rework the entire system by the end of the year.
Speaking at BlizzCon over the weekend, game director Dustin Browder detailed in length how the current matchmaking system has been a direct rip from StarCraft II’s own system, and how Blizzard thought they could edit it enough to work properly. Right now the current matchmaking system leaves a gap for a 20% failure rate – with only 80% of games going through matchmaking eventually settling on an even game.
To make matters worse, the current system also takes needlessly long, with Browder explaining that the extra time given to the algorithm to figure things out wasn’t even being used. Because the system of determining fair games and balancing levels was flawed, the system would do all the necessary calculations in a matter of seconds and then stop – because there simply were none left to iterate though given its parameters. Never mind that matchmaking was extended by four minutes to try and prevent this.
The new system thankfully almost starts from scratch. Instead of pools of players being swapped around until a solution is created – regardless of its accuracy – the new matchmaking system will form player queues. These queues won’t force a decision from the server, instead making matchmaking much shorter for those immediately matched with players and a little longer for those struggling to find a fair match. It does this to keep things fair, instead opting to prioritise good games over “the best we can do” with a small pool of currently searching players.
It’s a far better system by the sound of it, as the game is no longer trying to make do with what it’s given. If you happen to be new to the game and find yourself playing at a time dominated by more experienced players, your chances of finding a fair match are now as high as they ever will be. Blizzard hopes to roll out this change in a few weeks.
Last Updated: November 9, 2015