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Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a.... 12?

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Galactic Starfighter
Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a.... 12?
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Verain's Avatar


Verain
08.12.2018 , 02:45 PM | #1
Matchmaker doesn't seem perfect, and that may or may not be ok. More importantly, that's been discussed in other threads.

I want to discuss matchmaker's predilection for making 12s. At this point, I don't think it is a coincidence (aka, I think it's actually an effect of the patch). I'm not sure it represents an actual change- maybe matchmaker always loved 12s this much, but was never willing to wait long enough to matchmake before, and always had to labor under the split pool. Maybe nothing changed about that, but what has almost definitely changed is the number of 12s happening.

Anyway, I split this into mostly two categories, one of which seems pretty clear as something that should be addressed, and one of which is really, like, what does everyone think.

Aborted Games.

The 12s it creates are often not full by the time the game starts. I see 12s terminate due to timeout 30 seconds after launch. This isn't people leaving, this is people never getting there. It's pretty bizarre to see 11 players on 1 side and 4 on the other, with 10 seconds before the ships exit hyperspace. Even the games that don't abort often start threatening to do so, and starting with two players difference is pretty common. I've seen this at some different times of day, so I don't think it is due to a multibot griefer or exploiter, but I can't absolutely eliminate the possibility. Regardless, the devs will have metrics on this, and they absolutely need to look into it. The 12s seem to amplify this issue, which is odd. The current situation is generally unsatisfactory, at least at certain times of day and on certain servers, but it isn't like, totally broken. But it's close to that.

12s is different than 8s

Most of GSF has been 8s. Arguably the ship balance is a little more tuned for 8s. 12s have been pretty rare, and have always felt different. Is this something that the community wants? Does it need enough time to figure out if 12s are generally better, and worth waiting for? The matchmaker seems to JUST make 12s if it can, and only settles for 8s rarely. Is that the correct amount of 12s? If not, what is?

Here's some things 12s does:
1- Increases the penalty for being spawn camped.
2- Increases the frenetic feeling of any given conflict point, based on extra enemies and allies.
3- Increases the magnitude of the disparity in at least some of the conflict points.
4- Increases the power of aoe buffs, debuffs, and damage.
5- Grows the space for off roles and support roles.
6- Reduces the impact of a given 4 man team.
7- Reduces the impact of an given player.
8- Increase the amount of focus damage an extended player must tank or avoid, increasing the value of nests and control points, and increasing the value of absolute defenses and reducing the value of percentile defenses.

Probably some others. It's almost a different game. I've always liked 12s enough, but personally I'd like to see matchmaker make some 8s some times. I think a good ratio would be more like 50/50, as I believe they are both pretty different but valid game modes.
"The most despicable person on the GSF forum."

phalczen's Avatar


phalczen
08.12.2018 , 08:26 PM | #2
If I had to guess, I’d speculate that prior to 5.9.2 there would be somewhere on the order of 24 people across both factions queued up for GSF, but since it had to be restricted to faction, and it wasn’t trying to balance 4-person teams or individual skilled solo-players, the system was waiting for either 16 people on one faction or at least 8 of the other. Now what we are seeing is queues popping with the same core 24-ish players that had been queuing before, they’re just able to play right away now without waiting. Prior to 5.9.2 I would get on a toon, usually pub side, and it might take an hour for a queue to pop on SS during off peak. That hasn’t been the case last week when I played.
I dont think the system was always programmed to prefer 12s over 8s because when we were testing 5.5 it pretty much popped right away once the test groups queued.
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Verain's Avatar


Verain
08.12.2018 , 11:00 PM | #3
Nah, I mean like, it could have preferred 12, but previously it wouldn't wait, and now it has some kind of delay. It doesn't instapop pretty much ever, even when there's plenty on, probably to give it more time to actually matchmake.
"The most despicable person on the GSF forum."

Verain's Avatar


Verain
08.12.2018 , 11:02 PM | #4
ALSO:

We just had a game where our team had 10 people at the start, and theirs was 11 or 12.

At some point, we went up to 11 I think, but then back down to 10.

After this, we got a "matchmaker will end the game in 30 seconds" warning. Does everyone remember the "7v9" bug? Well, this bug put 13 people on their team. Our team only had 10. So it expired because 10v13 is a three man difference.

I feel there's a few problems here. Why is it adding a 13th player? Why is it adding players to the team that is already up on people? What's going on?
"The most despicable person on the GSF forum."

HrRav's Avatar


HrRav
08.13.2018 , 12:02 AM | #5
What I have seen, 12s often lack a few players at start, but are usually filled up pretty quickly. I have not seen that the team that is short a few player at start has a great disadvantage (but then on the other hand I have not been looking for that either...)

Personally, I have always liked 12s, but I agree that it would be nice to have a more even distribution between 12s and 8s. In particular, I really hope that the matchmaker prefers to have two parallel 8s rather than one 12 and a few players waiting in queue.

JecVanguard's Avatar


JecVanguard
08.13.2018 , 11:22 AM | #6
I'm just not good enough to compete with the veterans. My ship is fully upgraded so the game thinks I'm good, but I'm useless. What can I do?

Drakkolich's Avatar


Drakkolich
08.13.2018 , 01:56 PM | #7
I really don't feel the game is balanced around having 12 players on either side, I didn't mind playing the odd 12v12 before this patch as a different little game to mix it up, but seeing 90%+ of the games this week be 12v12's has really been less enjoyable for me.

As for the matches not filling in time and getting more aborted starts then ever, I think it might be time to add some extra time to the clock before the match starts.

Currently when your queue window pops up you have somewhere around 1 minute to enter or leave the pop. If you take it at the very last second you load in and the game starts about 10 seconds later. If someone was AFK and the window simply counted down and disappeared that means the matchmaker now gives a new player a pop up window and if that player doesn't take that pop immediately that game is going to start a player short.

Since the matchmaker is making games with even more players now this is happening more. If there is a 3 player difference between the teams the game ends in 30 seconds, with more players in the games it's easier to get that 3 player difference so we're seeing more games aborted.


I'd suggest returning to prioritizing 8v8 games and adding another minute to the start of games before you can hit ready and spawn in. This will give the players more time to accept all the pops needed to fill out the games and will result in less aborted games off the start just because players might be AFK or just plain not taking their queue pops.
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BretHoffman's Avatar


BretHoffman
08.15.2018 , 09:57 AM | #8 This is the last staff post in this thread.  
Hey there folks!

I just wanted to pop in here really quickly to add a little clarity to this conversation. With the changes that came in 5.9.2 there were no changes made to the match size logic. Starfighter matches have always attempted to make a 12v12 match first and upon failing to do that they create 8v8 matches. The changes in frequency of 12v12 seem to be caused by the larger pool of players that have come from the cross factional queues.

We are watching the player sentiment on this. If 12v12 matches being more normal is harmful to the game mode than we will take the time to re-evaluate how matches are created.

I hope this help.
Thanks,
Bret

HrRav's Avatar


HrRav
08.15.2018 , 12:30 PM | #9
Quote: Originally Posted by BretHoffman View Post
Hey there folks!

I just wanted to pop in here really quickly to add a little clarity to this conversation. With the changes that came in 5.9.2 there were no changes made to the match size logic. Starfighter matches have always attempted to make a 12v12 match first and upon failing to do that they create 8v8 matches. The changes in frequency of 12v12 seem to be caused by the larger pool of players that have come from the cross factional queues.

We are watching the player sentiment on this. If 12v12 matches being more normal is harmful to the game mode than we will take the time to re-evaluate how matches are created.

I hope this help.
Thanks,
Bret
Thanks for the clarficiation! Good to see that you are watching the development.

As I said, I think it is fun with 12s, but it seems to me as if the balancing in 5.5 (which were much appreciated!) were designed for 8s. Bomber/gunships nests are quite a bit tougher to break up in 12s than in 12, simply because knocking out a few gunships has a much greater impact on a nest of 8 compared to a nest of 12. If 12s are going to be the new standard, further balancing could be necessary.

Toraak's Avatar


Toraak
08.15.2018 , 12:34 PM | #10
Personally I like the 12v12's better then 8v8's. It makes it harder for a group of 4 to completely dominate a match, if the match maker is working properly.
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