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Games ending early are absolutely unsatisfactory

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Galactic Starfighter
Games ending early are absolutely unsatisfactory

Verain's Avatar


Verain
09.04.2018 , 09:08 PM | #1
Games end early, and in large numbers. GSF primetime, when our team normally plays, is the most reliable time for games that don't end early, but even then it happens.

I spent a decent amount of the holiday weekend on alts doing ground game stuff. I spammed /who a lot. I didn't take notes. But I did notice:

1- In GSF chat, six times players begged /gsf to join a game or it would end. This strategy seems ok at preventing games from ending, but I saw the game end regardless one of the times anyway. Maybe those other five would have gone on without the begging. Either way, hoping that enough of the community is online and not in queue is a poor way to make this work.

2- Many games end without filling up. I've seen this frequently on Star Forge and Satele at any but prime time. I've seen this without recognizable names anywhere. I've seen this while sitting in strongholds, or running around the lowbie planets on alts. I've seen this on alts in GSF. I wish I'd written down percentages, but honestly, I'm SURE that Bret and others can look at metrics on this. PLEASE LOOK AT METRICS ON THIS. These numbers have to be shockingly high.

3- Games ending early have a really bad effect on the overall game. At some level, GSF is competing with the rest of the game for player attention: because the rest of the game gives rewards per time spent, GSF needs to as well. Games that end early reward very little anything for a pilot. Games that end early are overrewarding for someone trying to complete dailies and weeklies, and have little reward beyond that. This is a bad incentivization, especially given that the new queue generally is considered to be an improvement for the ground pvp. At the very least I'm seeing mixed reviews with some positive posts- literally no one is pleased with the plague of early ends that GSF is faced with.

4- If anyone decides to grief the queue for any reason- and it's a pvp game, so there's motivation- it's going to be really easy, much easier than before, as there will be less pilots available for backfill.

I'm at the point where I think this is actually hurting player participation. Very few things can do this, and I'm not convinced of it, but it is extremely frustrating to have a 5 minute queue, game ends, 10 minute queue, game ends. Yesterday we had a game that was 11v9 right before launch, with our team having the 11. At the last second it adds someone to our team- a good pilot with a lot of games- and now it is 12v9. If matchmaker had placed that guy on the other team, it would not have ended the game. Why was he placed on our team? Failing that, why would matchmaker allow him to enter at all? There's only one wrong answer, and it is allowing him to enter and also putting him on our team.
"The most despicable person on the GSF forum."

ShallowHal's Avatar


ShallowHal
09.05.2018 , 12:36 AM | #2
It's hilarious to me how you're filling this board up with post after post about things you don't like, as if your opinion somehow has more weight than any other player and that the devs will jump for you when you tell them to.

Two things.

One is that I agree that the matchmaker has to make even numbers of teams. They have to fix that pronto. It's not the pop hitting and people not taking it. It's disproportionately filling up one team with a lot of players and the other with not enough.

The second is that I was logged into an alt in the Gone Sithing guild - a guild that used to be big on Starfighter. And unusually for this guild, other people were actually logged on when I was - it's a pretty dead guild now. Anyway, I mentioned to the guy that was on that the queue had popped and he said he's done forever with GSF because he hates the new matchmaker. I didn't ask for details, but I wonder how many other people out there feel the same way. I'm not entirely satisfied with what it's doing but other than the uneven team issue, how is it worse than what we had before? I don't know, but if one guy generally feels that way, perhaps there are others who feel that strongly. So it might be important to try to find out if there's a sizeable population who feels that way and if so, what they want to be different.
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Verain's Avatar


Verain
09.05.2018 , 01:02 AM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by ShallowHal View Post
It's hilarious to me how you're filling this board up with post after post about things you don't like, as if your opinion somehow has more weight than any other player and that the devs will jump for you when you tell them to.
Hey cool that is not why I am doing this.

I wanted a thread specifically about this particular issue, because I've found that the other feedback threads normally get garbaged up with completely unrelated points.

Anyway, I'm super glad you made such a hostile post, especially given that you agree with everything in this thread. Goodness!

Quote:
It's not the pop hitting and people not taking it. It's disproportionately filling up one team with a lot of players and the other with not enough.
That is also what it looks like to me. If it was the pop hitting and people not talking it, it wouldn't so reliably fill up like 12 v 7. I've certainly seen games that start like 7v8 and eventually fill evenly to 12v12, but it's less often than I would expect. I've also seen it take a 10v12 game and add a 13th. Oops, difference of three, calling the game now. That is an older bug that has been responsible historically for 9v7 games, and that's at least actually rare. But maybe they are related. This absolutely feels like a bug. Also, I have been queuing warzones, and I never ever ever ever ever see anything like this over there. Maybe someone can correct me on this, but I think something is wrong with specifically just the GSF matchmaker for some reason.

Quote:
Anyway, I mentioned to the guy that was on that the queue had popped and he said he's done forever with GSF because he hates the new matchmaker. I didn't ask for details, but I wonder how many other people out there feel the same way.
It's at least more than are on this forum and on reddit. I suspect most of them just silently assume it will get fixed, or just play another part of SWTOR.

Quote:
I'm not entirely satisfied with what it's doing but other than the uneven team issue, how is it worse than what we had before?
Well, I know at least on DM, a lot of people are upset about the 12s, but that's a topic for another thread (it's the one signed by a lot of DM players). But in the case of Gone Sithing, those guys each have a billion GSF games or whatever and there may the perception or reality that it might be matchmaking them unwisely based on the assumption that tons of games is the primary metric. Again, (a) I don't know that they think this and (b) my main matchmaker thread also talks about this.

There's basically three points about the new matchmaker. The first is the incomplete games. The second is the 12s, and the third is the matchmaking criteria. The latter two are already filling the forum.

Quote:
So it might be important to try to find out if there's a sizeable population who feels that way and if so, what they want to be different.
Well, the very first thing to resolve is the games ending too early. Everything else the community can probably adapt too, or debate, or something. The games ending in 30 seconds, like, I'm pretty sure that's not navel gazing on my part and after spamming /who for a holiday weekend with a lot of players doing a lot of things, I'm about absolutely convinced that it is a seriously unsatisfactory issue that is at least affecting both NA servers and probably to some extent DM, because the whole mode is basically a crapshoot of "will it happen" that is absolutely and totally out of the hands of the players.
"The most despicable person on the GSF forum."

phalczen's Avatar


phalczen
09.05.2018 , 05:03 AM | #4
Quote: Originally Posted by Verain View Post
3- Games ending early have a really bad effect on the overall game. At some level, GSF is competing with the rest of the game for player attention: because the rest of the game gives rewards per time spent, GSF needs to as well. Games that end early reward very little anything for a pilot. Games that end early are overrewarding for someone trying to complete dailies and weeklies, and have little reward beyond that. This is a bad incentivization, especially given that the new queue generally is considered to be an improvement for the ground pvp. At the very least I'm seeing mixed reviews with some positive posts- literally no one is pleased with the plague of early ends that GSF is faced with.
True, but so do long queue waits. If there are only 25-31 people in queue and the game prioritizes 8v8 those people not selected for a match will wait longer.

Now, if the game could somehow track those 12v12 matches which end before they really start, and then prioritize 8v8 if that happens, that might work. It seems reasonable to infer that if a 12v12 popped, and ended early, there might have been close to 16 people who clicked "Accept."

I, of course, do not know what the best solution is.
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ALaggyGrunt's Avatar


ALaggyGrunt
09.05.2018 , 11:40 AM | #5
Quote: Originally Posted by Verain View Post
That is also what it looks like to me. If it was the pop hitting and people not talking it, it wouldn't so reliably fill up like 12 v 7. I've certainly seen games that start like 7v8 and eventually fill evenly to 12v12, but it's less often than I would expect. I've also seen it take a 10v12 game and add a 13th. Oops, difference of three, calling the game now. That is an older bug that has been responsible historically for 9v7 games, and that's at least actually rare. But maybe they are related. This absolutely feels like a bug. Also, I have been queuing warzones, and I never ever ever ever ever see anything like this over there. Maybe someone can correct me on this, but I think something is wrong with specifically just the GSF matchmaker for some reason.
That would appear to not be unique to GSF.

HrRav's Avatar


HrRav
09.05.2018 , 01:13 PM | #6
There are not many matches on DM that end early due to lack of players on one team (at least not during those hours I play). However, it is very frequently that a game starts with 7-9 players in each team and then slowly fills up. It would be interesting to see an explanation why the matchmaker starts a 12v12 instead of 8v8 if there are around 16 people in queu but clearly less than 24.

Stellarcrusade's Avatar


Stellarcrusade
09.05.2018 , 01:21 PM | #7
I'm not like hal per se, I love your posts and forum contribution, and usually agree. You are correct to bring up this important issue, permit me offer an observation:

What I see most evenings is:
- Successful queues with most every war completing as normal for hours in the prime-time evening. Some long queue times but mostly fair queue times.
- Then a well known, much respected team of 4 uber aces begins queueing together at a certain time of the night. Then the w/l of every war is pre-determined and people stop queueing and start dropping before games start. Many 30 second ends happen, and queue times are long.

I realize that match-maker as it is designed cannot split up the ubers in order to make the wars close. But I do think with that extreme exception, normally the match-maker does produce more close games. There are many games I lose that I still think a solid rally from the team could shift the battle. But I can also see why pre-determined games are not fun for the type of people who were hoping for more close matches out of the match-maker. My point is, in some cases we cannot blame the match-maker.

That doesn't mean I'm trying to place the blame directly on the uber premade, because I know it is fun to play with buddies, and they cannot help it that another equally skilled 4 man doesn't queue. But maybe if they try splitting into two uber 2 man teams and queueing we can see if there are less 30 second games and more wars that people feel they can contribute to the w/l outcome, meaning keeping them motivated. I would be honored to be a fill on either of those teams.

Now that we may soon be getting (in the roadmap) a sort of guild challenge mode, the ubers maybe could be in their 4 man group against other guilds, and split during general queueing. Just a thought which may cut down on the 30 second ends.

Drakkolich's Avatar


Drakkolich
09.05.2018 , 02:32 PM | #8
Quote: Originally Posted by Stellarcrusade View Post
I'm not like hal per se, I love your posts and forum contribution, and usually agree. You are correct to bring up this important issue, permit me offer an observation:

What I see most evenings is:
- Successful queues with most every war completing as normal for hours in the prime-time evening. Some long queue times but mostly fair queue times.
- Then a well known, much respected team of 4 uber aces begins queueing together at a certain time of the night. Then the w/l of every war is pre-determined and people stop queueing and start dropping before games start. Many 30 second ends happen, and queue times are long.

I realize that match-maker as it is designed cannot split up the ubers in order to make the wars close. But I do think with that extreme exception, normally the match-maker does produce more close games. There are many games I lose that I still think a solid rally from the team could shift the battle. But I can also see why pre-determined games are not fun for the type of people who were hoping for more close matches out of the match-maker. My point is, in some cases we cannot blame the match-maker.

That doesn't mean I'm trying to place the blame directly on the uber premade, because I know it is fun to play with buddies, and they cannot help it that another equally skilled 4 man doesn't queue. But maybe if they try splitting into two uber 2 man teams and queueing we can see if there are less 30 second games and more wars that people feel they can contribute to the w/l outcome, meaning keeping them motivated. I would be honored to be a fill on either of those teams.

Now that we may soon be getting (in the roadmap) a sort of guild challenge mode, the ubers maybe could be in their 4 man group against other guilds, and split during general queueing. Just a thought which may cut down on the 30 second ends.
I was actually worried about what you mentioned here as well. That the reason the games were ending after 30 seconds was because people were dropping from seeing our premade.

So before Verain made this post we made sure that wasn't the reason we were seeing it this much. We did this by solo queue ing on alts.

The results were exactly the same, many games are ending 30 seconds after the start of games because the matchmaker isn't filling out one side.

Also Stellar LOTS of the games that end 30 seconds after the start are from OUR team having less players then they do.


I get some players really don't like premades and blaming them seems like an easy out, but these matches ending early have nothing do with premades, there is something wrong with the matchmaker and it needs to be addressed.
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Verain's Avatar


Verain
09.05.2018 , 03:13 PM | #9
Quote: Originally Posted by Stellarcrusade View Post
What I see most evenings is:
- Successful queues with most every war completing as normal for hours in the prime-time evening. Some long queue times but mostly fair queue times.
- Then a well known, much respected team of 4 uber aces begins queueing together at a certain time of the night. Then the w/l of every war is pre-determined and people stop queueing and start dropping before games start. Many 30 second ends happen, and queue times are long.

I think you are seeing what you want to see. As I stated in my OP, I actually see more games successfully start when we are playing as a group than at other times, probably because this is GSF prime time. I also have seen this issue in morning, afternoons, and early evenings, while solo queuing on fresh alts and established alts. I'm also seeing people complain about this and beg in /gsf.

If the game was just people dodging us, either by leaving at the sight of us or avoiding queuing when we are on, I wouldn't have made a post about this being a systemic problem. We would just adjust. But it is a systemic problem, with nothing to do with us, or any other group, hence this post.

Additionally, RL has interfered with our GSF group last week anyway, so we couldn't even bring a four man to the table pretty much any of those nights. As much as I'd love to oppress my fellow pilots each and every night, sadly, I cannot. That didn't stop me from hearing people on my team debate over whether our opponents were really us on alts, complete with guessing as to which one was which. At one point I was told to focus a gunship on account of that gunship assuredly being Verain. It's been pretty legit.

Also, as Drako says, many of these games quit while our team is down men, which also wouldn't go along with that theory.
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Linuxizer's Avatar


Linuxizer
09.05.2018 , 08:50 PM | #10
It is a bug and it needs to be fixed.

Quote: Originally Posted by Stellarcrusade View Post
...
What I see most evenings is:
- Successful queues with most every war completing as normal for hours in the prime-time evening. Some long queue times but mostly fair queue times.
- Then a well known, much respected team of 4 uber aces begins queueing together at a certain time of the night. Then the w/l of every war is pre-determined and people stop queueing and start dropping before games start. Many 30 second ends happen, and queue times are long.
...
Yes, I've also seen this happen.

Back on topic, I've seen matches without aces (that I know of) end early due to matchmaker sending the backfill player to the wrong side, both 8 vs. 8 and 12 vs. 12. Or, more precisely,
6 vs. 8 -> 6 vs. 9 -> abort, or
9 vs. 11 -> 9 vs. 12 -> abort
I don't doubt the 10 vs. 13 happens too. The 9 vs. 12 or 10 vs. 13 are harder to see because the match-end scoreboard fills up.
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