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Let's Discuss Ranked PvP Ideas...

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > PvP
Let's Discuss Ranked PvP Ideas...
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MikeBradley's Avatar


MikeBradley
03.13.2019 , 05:18 PM | #1 This is the last staff post in this thread.  

Hey All,

First off, thank you all for your participation in the broader PvP thread talking about win trading. I appreciate all of the feedback that was given and hope that I was able to shed some light on the topic. The goal of this new thread is to specifically focus on gathering ideas for potential systemic changes to Ranked PvP systems.

To start, Id like to share the high-level goals for any ideas gathered in this thread:

  • Change rating distribution to better encourage prolonged, honest play throughout the season
  • Reduce or eliminate mechanics that incentivize exploitative behavior
  • Make matchmaking feel more balanced

There have been a lot of specific ideas posted on the forums and discussed internally about how we could improve our current rating system, our matchmaking system, and to better deter exploitative behavior throughout. Please know that I have gathered (and continue to look for) as many of those ideas as I can find, and have been sharing them with the broader team in order to build some sense of how viable they each may be.

Before we dig too deep into any of these ideas, I need to clearly set expectations. These are early steps in an effort to build a broad consensus towards as many of these ideas as make sense to potentially pursue. Depending on what we discuss here, follow up conversations will need to be had with our dev team to figure out exactly how much time each of the ideas would take to implement. With that information we'd need to find them a place on our schedule. Fair warning, this is not necessarily a short process.

With all of that in mind, here are some of the specific ideas that we feel would best work towards the goals stated above:

  • Reduce both the rating gained from a win and removed from a loss
  • Adding minimum requirements for games played to achieve each rank
  • Adding a rating decay over time
  • Adjusting the matchmaking system to better prevent large class imbalances between teams

We understand that there are obvious sensitivities to changing the rules of the game in a season that is already underway. For that reason, and the logistical hurdles mentioned above, I cannot promise that any of these changes will go live in season 11. It is possible that some ideas may be easier to implement than we expect or that obtaining one may lessen the need for another, but I want to be as transparent as possible regarding timelines.

I realize that some of you may have previously put forth suggestions that are not captured in the list above. If anyone has a proposal that you feel is not covered by any of the above ideas, please share it in this thread (or link to where you have explained it elsewhere), and we can all discuss the pros and cons. Im looking forward to digging in here. Thanks for making it through this mountain of text!

Until next time

Mike Bradley | Associate Producer
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alexsamma's Avatar


alexsamma
03.13.2019 , 07:26 PM | #2
In regards to rating decay I hope you consider that with the small population of team ranked players this could actually be used to attack players by simply refusing to queue into them; queue dodging is already an issue and with rating decay it could become more of an issue (or, it could help address it).

I also think that rating decay should only count for top 3 titles, it should not affect your ability to obtain a tier (gold/silver/bronze) since many people enjoy playing multiple classes (the game has been punishing alt play way to much since 5.0 released).

In regards to adjusting point gained/lost I think you should concentrate on reducing points lost for a loss and consider not adjusting points earned for a win; currently it feels like you need to win 1.5-2 games to make up a loss, this needs to be re-tuned so that you can (generally) make up a loss with a win.

For solo ranked I would suggest significantly reducing points gained//lost for matches with support classes (healer/tank matches):
-These roles have such a huge impact on your ability to win or lose
-The discrepancy in skill is often-times mind blowing, which often leads to tank/healer roulette
-This prevents people from swapping to tank/healer to farm "bad" tanks/healers for easy rating

begemotamus's Avatar


begemotamus
03.13.2019 , 07:43 PM | #3
Hi Mike,

Thanks for posting this. Given BW's track record with promises in this game, I won't get excited until I see something more concrete from you guys. But it is good to see that the ranked system is finally being talked about.

My two creds are;

Quote: Originally Posted by MikeBradley View Post
  • Reduce both the rating gained from a win and removed from a loss

Maybe look at just reducing rating losses. For example, +10 for a win, -8 for a loss. Make it so that you always gain more for winning than losing. As it stands right now, once you get over ~1500 rating you gain less for wins and lose a lot more for losses. Its very frustrating as you can win 8 games and lose 5 and still be at the same rating. This is further exacerbated by the poor matchmaking, which you have already acknowledged.

Quote: Originally Posted by MikeBradley View Post
  • Adding minimum requirements for games played to achieve each rank
  • Adding a rating decay over time
  • Adjusting the matchmaking system to better prevent large class imbalances between teams

These are all good suggestions and I think if all were implemented correctly, the ranked ecosystem will be significantly improved. However, I can still see ways for people to game the system.

Perhaps the question you should be asking the dev team internally is what system will require the least amount of monitoring and policing. Wouldn't it be nice if you didn't have to spend precious few resources on sifting through all the win trading or throwing reports and then spending two weeks after every season making sure everything is legit and still not getting it right?

There are a number of systems that can be implemented that will free up a lot of time for you guys to do other stuff. A lot of these have already been proposed and I'm sure you will get reminded of them in the following comments.

Whatever "systemic change" you make needs to be as simple as possible with little to no room for "funny business".
Don't turn it into another convoluted system that no one likes (eg. current gearing system).

I look forward to hearing your more detailed proposals with regards to revamping the ranked system.
I may be wrong...

Sertar's Avatar


Sertar
03.13.2019 , 08:08 PM | #4
I'm talking mostly from Solo Ranked perspective here, but some points apply for Team Ranked as well.

Quote: Originally Posted by MikeBradley View Post
  • Change rating distribution to better encourage prolonged, honest play throughout the season
  • Reduce or eliminate mechanics that incentivize exploitative behavior
Three important things, that should and can be applied no matter how the "new rating system" looks like in the end are:

Remove the fact that your first 5/10/20/40 matches on a character per season are more important in terms of rating gain/loss than the matches after!

Fix Backfills! Right now if a healer or a tank declines the pop or leaves the match early, it's completely random what role gets the backfill, even though a player of that role is in queue.

Punish leaving matches (especially leaving before start) and declining pops (both actively and afking) legacy wide!

Another problem right now is that people going for top 3s are not incentivized to keep playing their high rated character and try "camping" their rating instead and hope it would hold till season end. How to fix that?

Make also Top 3s given for "highest earned", not current rating.

Problem here is that highest earned is not shown on the leaderboards. This could be added easily though. But even if not, players would still be incentivized to play their main characters to push for a higher "highest earned" when they don't know where the competition is.
BUT I can also see this being against player's consensus as the fact that current rating counts makes Top 3s somewhat special.

Don't hinder high rated players by not only making them wait longer for invites but also teaming them up with the lowest rated players by default to "compensate". This is the reason why season 10 ratings were so incredibly low compared to all seasons before!

This combined with my first point (the first 5/10/20/40 matches) made Top 3 positions for solo ranked in season 10 somewhat random and thus frustrating and even insulting. Well.. this kinda goes against

Quote: Originally Posted by MikeBradley View Post
  • Make matchmaking feel more balanced
BUT here is a solution:

1. Make pots sorted by elo.
2. The 8 highest rated players in queue will get into the same match, the players 9-16 into the next one, ... as far as roles (T/D/H) allow it.
3. AND NOW: For every "pot" don't balance by elo, but by classes. Step 1: Range/Melee, Step 2: Offheal/Offguard capability, Step 3: Mirror respective classes. 2 Snipers, so put one into each team. 2 Maras, so put one into each team.

If this can't be implemented it should be completely random instead. Because the systems we had before either put all high elo players into one team to faceroll over the other (S1 - S9) or "balance" the teams out so the highest rated player would have a higher chance to have the 900 elo guy that gets globalled in his team (S10, S11). And both systems create situations that feel unfair. If it's completely random, everyone knows it's completely random.

Quote: Originally Posted by MikeBradley View Post
  • Adding minimum requirements for games played to achieve each rank
YES! Get rid of the "10 games" thing. Show elo from the first game on. I'd suggest following minimum requirements:
- at least 30 games played for Bronze
- at least 50 games played for Silver
- at least 100 games played for Gold and Top 3

Quote: Originally Posted by MikeBradley View Post
  • Adding a rating decay over time
I say NO to this. There need to be other incentives for keeping the solo ranked queue active in general (like CXP/components in S8, monumental crystals in S11) but also people playing their main characters. Rating decay is not a solution.

Thanks for reading this. I hope it helps. Also thanks for working on Ranked PvP!

Edit: More ideas:

Change the ranked weeklies again: Total points to achieve should be 30. Give 3 points per win, 1 point per loss.

The 50 points change effectively killed Team Ranked. For "farmers" 30 losses is still punishing enough while teams that lose more than they win would have more incentive to queue than they have right now.

Get rid of rating gain/loss determined by your elo compared to other people's elo in the respective match. Just have fix values like "10" for it.

BRKMSN's Avatar


BRKMSN
03.13.2019 , 08:24 PM | #5
Losing should be less significant in solo ranked than in team ranked. Same with winning, really.

"Solo" ranking should be based almost entirely on how you perform regardless of your teammates. If you perform well in a loss, you should still be able to gain, just not as much as in a win.

Finally, rating gained per match needs to factor in the quality or performance of the opponent If you look at professional bull riding, you can have an easy ride on a weak bull and end up with a low score because the bull didn't present a challenge.

I'm not sure if any of my thoughts are feasible, but I feel if they could be implemented somehow, it would encourage more participation and discourage actual win-trading.
We have a zero tolerance policy for intolerance of any kind.

rolandps's Avatar


rolandps
03.13.2019 , 09:02 PM | #6
I just had a quick read over the thred and the early replies here.

Adjust the rating gain / loss: No, it's perfectly fine. The ratings in season 10 have been low because matchmaking actually worked. If there were 40 people in queue, the matchmaking tried to match the 8 highest rated players in one match, the 8 second-highest rated players in one, etc. and the lowest rated people in a match. About the suggestion to match highest and lowest rated player together, which compensate each other, is complete ********.

Have a look at yourself: Play 100 games in solo ranked on a class that you can play best, then do 100 games in solo ranked on a class that you can't really play / don't even know. The class you can't play will end up at low elo, the class you can play will end up at high elo. Accordingly to this statement, matchmaking works perfectly fine.

Of course there are those exceptions of people who are simply lucky and get 1650 elo after 20 matches, but also they will drop again after 100 more matches, just because their skill can't maintain the elo over the matches. Which could be addressed by reducing the elo gained / lost in the first 5 / 10 / 20 games. But not overall.

- Adding minimum requirements for games played to achieve each rank
Yes, please! And not only 10 games for gold. Make it 50 or 100. Or even more, since you gain a lot in the first 10 / 20 / etc matches, make it 150 maybe.

- Adding a rating decay over time
I'm not sure whether I like this, but wouldn't this favour people who play the season a few weeks before it ends compared to the ones playing it since day 1 of the season?

- Adjusting the matchmaking system to better prevent large class imbalances between teams
Don't overdo this, or people who can't play the game will end up at 2000 elo due to matchmaking.

- For solo ranked I would suggest significantly reducing points gained//lost for matches with support classes (healer/tank matches)
Have a look at the leaderboards. The high rated players in the healer classes (Mercenary, Sorcerer, Operative) aren't playing heals, mostly. They are queuing as damage dealer. I personally queued 3 sorcs and a sage to roughly 1550 elo each in this season so far, as lightning, not as healer. DD has a higher carry potential than support classes IMO, but also that is different for each matchup.

- Reduce both the rating gained from a win and removed from a loss
NOOOO please no. Read again what I wrote in the first 100 sentences in my reply here, just don't do this!

- Fix Backfills! Right now if a healer or a tank declines the pop or leaves the match early, it's completely random what role gets the backfill, even though a player of that role is in queue.
That's not true, if a role of the missing spot is in queue, it gets the pop, in most cases.

- Make also Top 3s given for "highest earned", not current rating.
No, that would simplify the effort people would have to take in order to achieve top3. They will just keep queuing, and they don't even have to care about winning at some point, if their highest rating counts for top3. You get lucky first 20 games with 1700 rating, but you're super bad at your class. Accordingly to your skill, you drop down to 1300 after 100 games. But you get top3 because you got lucky in the first 20 games? Really?

- Don't hinder high rated players by not only making them wait longer for invites but also teaming them up with the lowest rated players by default to "compensate". This is the reason why season 10 ratings were so incredibly low compared to all seasons before!
NO. Just. NOOOO. The reason for the "low ratings" in season 10 is because there were enough people in queue to make the matchmaking system work properly.

A few other suggestions:
- Make the weeklies easier again, as well for team ranked. Team ranked has died since the weeklies were changed (that's another discussion tho).

- Get rid of rating gain/loss determined by your elo compared to other people's elo in the respective match. Just have fix values like "10" for it.
No, I really like the way they already do it.

- "Solo" ranking should be based almost entirely on how you perform regardless of your teammates. If you perform well in a loss, you should still be able to gain, just not as much as in a win.
That's a not, it's ******** to gain elo if you loose. It's just wrong, lol.

RACATW's Avatar


RACATW
03.13.2019 , 10:25 PM | #7
Maybs if rating gained was partly dependant on damage taken and damage or heals or protection dealt it would encourage legit playing.


You can't really fake damage taken and usually that tells most of the story if someone takes a lot but still managed to put out some dps or heals or protection.

sharkfishman's Avatar


sharkfishman
03.13.2019 , 10:56 PM | #8
My suggestion would be to completely revamp the rating system in solo ranked so players would only earn what they do, i.e. badges. Wins and losses could perhaps account for 20%-30% of the points gained or lost.

For example, if I was able to earn 14 medals for my stellar performance as a DPS, tank or heals, I would receive 7 rank points. If my team also won, I would get 2-3 additional points, for a total of ten.

If my team lost, I would get the 7 points, minus 2-3 for the loss, giving me a net gain of 4. In this way, skilled solo players will increase with games played depending on their performance as the key factor, not the other team. I believe this discourages win trading and thrown matches in solo ranked, since I wouldn't be rewarded as much as currently unless I actually played the match.

As for group ranked, I think it's important to motivate players that are in Discord speaking to each other to actually queue for group ranked instead of trying to queue sync solo ranked. I think group ranked should reward larger total gains (and losses) than presently, since team skill is a larger factor here. In other words, queuing grouped would offer a faster path to victory and high scores for teams, but would also carry more significant risk. Losses would be more punishing, but a win streak capable of great things for total score.

How to prevent abusing group ranked through win trading? By forcing players to register groups prior to the start of the season. Toon A signs up for group Belsavis Crushers, and must stick with this group all season. If Belsavis Crushers is shown to be win trading/hacking, all group members take the punishment together.
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RACATW's Avatar


RACATW
03.14.2019 , 12:24 AM | #9
Quote: Originally Posted by sharkfishman View Post
My suggestion would be to completely revamp the rating system in solo ranked so players would only earn what they do, i.e. badges. Wins and losses could perhaps account for 20%-30% of the points gained or lost.

For example, if I was able to earn 14 medals for my stellar performance as a DPS, tank or heals, I would receive 7 rank points. If my team also won, I would get 2-3 additional points, for a total of ten.

If my team lost, I would get the 7 points, minus 2-3 for the loss, giving me a net gain of 4. In this way, skilled solo players will increase with games played depending on their performance as the key factor, not the other team. I believe this discourages win trading and thrown matches in solo ranked, since I wouldn't be rewarded as much as currently unless I actually played the match.

As for group ranked, I think it's important to motivate players that are in Discord speaking to each other to actually queue for group ranked instead of trying to queue sync solo ranked. I think group ranked should reward larger total gains (and losses) than presently, since team skill is a larger factor here. In other words, queuing grouped would offer a faster path to victory and high scores for teams, but would also carry more significant risk. Losses would be more punishing, but a win streak capable of great things for total score.

How to prevent abusing group ranked through win trading? By forcing players to register groups prior to the start of the season. Toon A signs up for group Belsavis Crushers, and must stick with this group all season. If Belsavis Crushers is shown to be win trading/hacking, all group members take the punishment together.
I dont like the medals idea because they're super easy to farm on say a jugg skank tank but not so easy on a mara.

I like the idea of it being earned on what you did in the match though. In my opinion rewarding people who take a lot of focus and still do what they're supposed to do (heals, tanking or dps) is better since it indicates both skill and legit effort. They didn't throw the match etc etc.

Lundorff's Avatar


Lundorff
03.14.2019 , 12:30 AM | #10
Abolishing the dysfunctional ELO-system would be a WELCOME change indeed.

I see 2 types of point systems, the simple and the complex and in neither system will you ever loss points.

The Simple
Every character starts each season with 0 points, and gains 2-3 point for winning and 0 for losing. Combining this with a minimum of matches played for bronze, silver and gold (and platinum?) and you have an easily implemented system, that will cause a lot less grief and toxicity than the current. The down side is that mediocre or even bad players could reach the number 1 spot by simply playing an excessive amount of matches, but even that is preferably to the current wintrading.

The Complex
A point system that rewards better players based on winning streaks by using an Accumulation Counter. All characters still starts at 0 points, and if you lose a match you still get 0 points. But the more matches you win in a row, the more points you are rewarded for each match. When you eventually lose a match, your streak counter is simply put back to 1, but you never lose the points you have gained so far. You could put a hard cap on the Accumulation Counter at 3 points.

Example 1 (good player):
Win: 1 point
Win: 2 points
Win: 3 points
Win: 3 points
Win: 3 points
Lost: 0 points
This player now have 12 points after 6 matches.

Example 2 (Mediocre player):
Win: 1 point
Win: 2 points
Lost: 0 points
Win: 1 point
Lost: 0 points
Win: 1 point
This player now have 5 points after 6 matches.

The player doesn't lose the points won, but the Accumulation Counter is back to 1 each time a player losses a match. This system would benefit better players, and it would be harder for mediocre / bad players to climb high based on numbers alone.