1v1 Ranked Ladder is broken

Team games, I understand. You don’t want to wait forever to find a game. Makes sense. Agree 100%.

But 1v1, we need infinite map bans. Majority of the player pool wants it. No other RTS game in the world caters to the whim of the minority and puts the minority’s needs above the majority. I think what happened here was the developers received so many complaints about ALT+F4 map dodging that they assumed that was the only problem, when in reality that was just one of the many symptoms of not allowing infinite bans; a solution which would please the vast majority of the player pool. Infinite bans will still allow non-standard map players to match with each other. Ok then they will complain it takes longer to find games. In which case they could add an ELO slider where you can select what range of ELO you want to play (e.g. +/- 150 ELO). Personally I’d rather get spanked by a better ranked player on the maps i want to play than be forced to play horrible maps with players at my ELO.

Some of us don’t have that much free time. We work long hours and just want to have fun in our down time. We may only have time for a few games a night. And we all paid for the game. Why should we have to spend our time playing maps we don’t want? Ok, you don’t want Arabia? Ban it. You’d be able to ban all the maps you hate with infinite bans. It’s not the majority’s fault that not enough people want to play your funky maps. The fact that you’d have to wait ages to find a game with infinite bans proves that not enough players like the odd maps and nobody really likes the current system of limited bans with the 5 minute penalty. It’s a compromise which doesn’t please either side of the argument. The system should be democratic. Majority referendum vote built into the game. “Do you want infinite bans?” [Yes / No] on the Multiplayer title screen.

The current 1v1 ladder system is ruining the game we all love. Nobody really wants to play unranked. Nobody wants to play AoC on Voobly. Nobody wants to play maps they don’t like. Please fix it.


I agree that this will lead to a positive game experience for everyone, as long as players understand that if they ban all the maps in the pool except one, they will get a much longer queue time, and that if they don’t ban more 4 out of 7 maps, they will play against someone better than them on that specific map, because it will likely be a clown (or the respective words for ara, islands, nomad etc players).

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Or better yet, just increase map stars to 3 and keep bans at 3 while removing non-standard game modes from the 1 vs 1 random map standard start queue. (3 vills + civ bonuses, 1 tc, 1 normal scout/eagle scout)
Which removes unreasonable insta-ban game-modes from the queue which leads to letting users ban maps they would play but would rather not than being forced to use the bans on game-modes that don’t belong.

Increasing map stars to 4 while keeping bans to 3 allows for there to always be one starred map that’s not banned which leads to there always being a chance that a player will get a preferred map as well as increasing the odds both players star the same map.

And it would be nice to increase the ranked 1 vs 1 rotation map #'s alongside this.

If you’re going to instate unlimited bans than unlock all random maps for the queue to be selected from instead of the limited selection we have now.

If we’re going to have unlimited bans, I want all the maps available to choose from.

Furthermore, if we have unlimited bans, I’d demand unlimited stars on top of that.

Agreed. The ladder is a total loss.


I think that this could be a possible solution: How we could fix the ranked matchmaking system

This is a key point and I agree 100%. The map rotation system with only a limited number of maps doesn’t make sense. I understand that the developers have designed all these maps and they want to showcase them all, but surely allowing all maps would mean more of the unusual maps would be played? They could even simplify the map selection screen with 4 options: Open Land Maps, Closed Land Maps, Water Maps & Hybrid / Unusual Maps like Mega Random & Nomad. Then a drop down arrow or ‘+’ sign which does a ‘Show/Hide’ list of all the maps in that category when you click on it with tick boxes next to them if you want to be more specific about which maps you want to ban in that category. The default setting would be all maps selected, obviously. And they could still add new maps to the map pool. The more the merrier.

But there would be no need for more starred favourite maps if we had infinite bans. You’d literally just ban maps you don’t want. Simple. 3 out of 4 maps starred as favourite completely defeats the point of having a ‘favourite’. Infinite bans would simplify matchmaking because the algorithm could just match players on any unbanned map, instead of trying to match players favourite maps.

I agree with allowing all maps and no map pool rotation. But there would be no need for favourite stars with infinite map bans. Literally just ban the maps you don’t want. Much simpler for the matchmaking algorithm to find a game.

Infinite map bans + Faster matchmaking + No Alt-F4 quitters = The solution that everybody wants.

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Sorry - I disagree.

I also do not like posts which say things like ‘everybody wants this…’ or ‘nobody likes this’ when it simply isn’t true. Just because you and some other people feel strongly about something doesn’t mean that you speak for the whole community.

The 1vs1 ranked ELO should be a reflection of overall game skill. This cannot be true if everybody only ever plays their favourite map (with or without civ pick, but that is another story). You could imagine a guy that has a great build order and strategy for Arena and manages to get to 2k ELO. But he would probably lose to a 1400 on an open map. This is an extreme example, but it is not at all impossible.

The old Voobly days where most people used to do Arabia Hun wars were very dull. I prefer the current system much better. And so do a lot (majority) of other players. We regularly get to experience new maps and run into people trying different strategies. This is what keeps the game interesting. We have to keep adapting and this makes us better.

I would agree that maybe adding 1-2 maps to the pool and giving 1 additional ban could make some more people happy. But honestly, the 1vs1 system is pretty good.

If you just want to play a single map all the time and you dont have much spare time then just find a friend who has the same preference and play with them. Then you never have any queues and don’t need to worry about anything. You can both grab a beer and chat on discord during the match. No stress.


It’s clear from looking at the forums since the system change that most people are not happy with the current system. If you’re happy with it, you are the minority I was talking about. The Alt+F4 quitters / map specialists are not happy and the anti-Arabia people who hate queue dodgers are not happy either because they still have to play maps they don’t want. Majority opinion always wins elsewhere in life, it’s only this game where it doesn’t.

I keep hearing this argument but it’s such a one-sided biased opinion. I could just as easily say “If you can’t beat an Arabia or Arena specialist at their own game, then you’re probably not as good as you think you are”. Besides, the best Arabia players are the best overall aoe2 players. All the tournament results and rankings reflect this. So avoiding Arabia just means you’re inflating your ELO by trying to beat people at funky maps they’re not used to playing. See, that argument works both ways.

Strawman argument, I’m clearly not advocating for Arabian Hun wars or limited maps. I’m saying we should have more maps, all the maps available to choose from. And even in the Voobly days, Viper managed to break the Huns war deadlock by going Random Civ and becoming the best player, which eventually made other players follow suit and the Hun wars thing died long before DE even came out.

Except that one friend would have to be available every time I want to play and would have to be exactly evenly matched to my skill level. And what happens when I outgrow his skill level. Not to mention that it’s boring to play when there’s no ELO points at stake. The stress in game is what makes it exciting. Low stakes / no stress is boring.


I would argue that the current system is pretty fine for the majority of players. That does not mean that it couldn’t be further improved (I made a thread with such a suggestion recently), but overall it does a fairly decent job, except for the minority who wishes to play one single map every single game without any hope for compromise.


Maybe it should be a reflection of skill but it currently isnt neither so this skill argument is quite abstract. Right now one arabia player vs one arena player match up on maps like land nomad or golden pitt. 80% of my games right now happen on this map. I don’t even mind playing arabia but since a lot of people ban arena I’d just get ara all the time if I don’t ban it. So it’s a strategical decision in the end. Sure there are alternatives to infinite map bans that have advantages in some respects. But this skill argument doesn’t make sense. Right now people who play arabia can do so like 90% of the time. How is that is that more representative of skill for maps other than arabia compared to people that play 90% arena? The only difference is that the former can do so right now while the latter cant. Also no way that a 2k arena player gets beaten on arabia by 1400 one. There can be a elo between these maps but that would be like 100 or 200 max.

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No rts in the world let you choose one single map to play in ranked. They don’t even let you pick a favourite, you just veto whatever don’t suits your race/playstyle with your X (where X is the number of bans you have depending on the map pool) and that’s it

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These so-called “single map” players actually like a lot more maps than you think. Arabia players like any open map, some will even like non-standard games like Nomad and Mega Random. But playing this ‘lucky dip’ of random maps every game was not a popular style before DE. It was forced upon us and we adapted to it, which is not the same as us choosing it.

I’m guessing you never played aoe2 before DE then?

I’ve got a couple hours in there. AoE2 DE is the only exception when it comes to a favourite map in MM.
You want to bring all the other rts in the wrold in the discussion? Fine, but when in ut comes to MM no other major rts has a favourite map system, let alone a “pick one single map system”

And btw, AoE2 DE never let you do that. We even started with a map pool and no bans whatsoever, but there wasn’t a a single time where you could choose to play just one map in ranked MM without cheating the system (because yeah, alt+f4 is cheating the system)

Also again, this is a strawman argument. I wasn’t saying all other RTS games allow you to pick one map. I was saying no other RTS game makes decisions based on the minority’s opinion and ignores the majority. And I’m not advocating for Alt+F4 either, I’m not a quitter. Even the quitters don’t want to quit either, they just want what most of us want for 1v1… infinite bans!

Please can somebody give a list of good reasons why infinite bans for 1v1 is a bad idea because I’m yet to hear a single good argument which hasn’t been soundly debunked already.

Plenty of reasons have already been given, but you have chosen not to accept them as legitimate because they do not fit with your opinion.

TG ladder is for sure an issue, and needs to be fixed (smurfing, temp bans etc). But 1vs1 ladder is just fine. And this is the opinion of the majority of the community whether you like it or not.

Where is your proof of this? Especially when you see the sheer number of posts complaining about ranked ladder, including 1v1 not just team games (which I conceded are fine now since the changes if you’d read my OP).

The point of unlimited stars alongside unlimited bans is that it increases the possibility that a map or even a few will be starred by both players which increases the odds that the game will be played on a map both players prefer.

Even if the stars were increased to 5 alongside the unlimited bans, it would still be a solid feature to have to increase the odds of that one map being starred by both players.

Example: you ban all maps except 10 maps - the enemy has all but 4 of those maps banned, yet has only one of them starred, you happen to have starred that map as well, you then proceed to both play that agreed on map.

It’s better to have both be unlimited or both be limited to 3 stars, 3 bans.
Or 4 stars, 3 bans to ensure you will always have at least one starred map in the pool.

This is to avoid a player having a starred map in the pool while the other does not.(which if one had a star while the other does not increases the odds to 100% that the map will be chosen) The alternative is to remove starred maps.

The main problem with all of this is that players are matched before considering map bans or if even each player has a single map unbanned between them.

With that in mind, if given all maps to choose from, map bans should never exceed 49% of the pool.

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Based on the first post: You want a system in which you have all freedom about which map you play and against which opponents? I have good news for you. Such system already exists and is called the lobby. Just go and play into the lobby. Pick whatever map you like and play against whatever people you want!

I dont know many games in which new features are decided democratic. It is always up to the devs, based on user input. So they should look to discussions like this one. Having majority referendum doesnt make much sense to me. Such poll is also misleading. People just pick an option without really thinking about the consequences of their votes.

What i do like about a ingame poll is having the map vote ingame. It will result in much more votes. I am pretty sure about that one. Having to register on a site is a huge bottleneck for many players. If it is ingame they are much more likely to vote.

Problem with a match making system is that there is a trade offs. More freedom results in less matches and thus longer waiting time. So infinite bans will result in overall slower waiting time.

Completely agree with this part of the post. Looking back at voobly i really have to say that the current system is much better. I wont claim it is perfect, but at least it is a big upgrade, mostly because of the points you make. It is also much more easily to get into a good balanced game with matchmaking compared how it was at Voobly.

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