Devs: Please improve the team elo system

It is broken, an embarrassment, and a joke.

I am a 2000-2100 rated team player who enjoys queueing up for 2v2 and 3v3 random on quick search.

Problem 1: I had to play a 25-30 minute 3v3 QS game (900, 1100, 2050 elo vs 1450, 1450, 1450 elo), where I basically had to 1v3 the entire game, and when I finally win the game after 30 mins I am greeted with +0. Not even a single point for the win.

If the elos are more or less evenly matched why do I get no points for a win?

Problem 2: I queue up for a 2v2/3v3, and get placed in a 2v2. I immediately notice my brit teammate send all his vills to berries instead of hunt. Fantastic. We quickly lose the game because its clear my opponents are more competent and we get rolled at 10 mins when my brit ally has a grand total of five musketeers. I check the elo’s after the game, the system matched us (800 and 2100 elo) versus (1800 and 1800 elo). I proceed to get a -28 slapped to my face for this unwinnable game.

Why is a 800/2100 team considered favored versus a 1800/1800 team elo-wise? This is unwinnable for the former team yet elo losses are massive for the 2100 player.

The elo system is a joke and fundamentally flawed. As you can see, a 900/1100/2050 team playing versus a 1450/1450/1450 team nets +0 for the 2050 player despite that person essentially having to 1v3. The sum of the elo’s of the players for the first team is actually less than the sum of the second, yet the highest rated player gets no points at all. In addition, a 800/2100 team versus a 1800/1800 team causes the 2100 player to lose 28 points, despite again the sum of the elos for the first team being FAR LESS than the second team. Losing 28 points for a game means the player should have been heavily favored to win that game, but lost. I don’t see how a 800/2100 team vs 1800/1800 is heavily favored for the former if their teammate reaches age 2 at 8 minutes into the game, as is often seen in 800 elo players. It’s clear that the matchmaking algorithm only compares your INDIVIDUAL elo with the enemy TEAM, ignoring the fact that your teammate might as well be 800 elo and essentially nonexistent. It’s clear the team elo system needs to be overhauled.

Solution: Do research on how an actual, appropriate, fair ELO system works and replace the joke of a system we have now with the new and improved one.

Thank you for reading my post. Hope to see a fix sooner rather than later.

edited my post to focus more on the elo system itself rather than matchmaking since aoe3de might be a dying game and there aren’t many players.


This game does not have a sufficiently large enough playerbase, for the system to get picky about your teammates.
Sorry, but unless you want to queue up for 3 hours per game, you will be matched with 800 ELO or lower players, a lot.

If you want to play only with people in your own ELO bracket, there is only 1v1.

This is not AoE2 or Starcraft 2, you will have awful teammates, often. The playerbase for Multiplayer is just tiny, as it is.
The system will always try to find you games as quickly as possible, because there is almost no one playing at your own ELO bracket, so you will get a lot of unfair matches.

Game is dead.

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I’m sorry but that is a ■■■■■■■■ excuse. The higher rated team players in Aoe3DE are well aware that it is not a popular game and there aren’t many players at the higher levels searching at a time.

The thing is, we would rather stay in an longer queue to find a good game, rather than wait 10 minutes in queue and then spend 10-15 minutes in a unfun, useless game, only to go back to queue and search for another 10 minutes.

They should at least be given the option to select to say that they want to stay in queue until a game comes up and confirm that they recognize queues will be longer.

Plus, I’m not saying that games which result in even +2 or +3 points should be eliminated, I’m primarily targeting the games where we literally get no points for a win. +2 and +3 indicates that the game at least took effort and wasn’t a complete stomp so I’m fine with keeping those in.

Also, that doesn’t change the fact the elo system is flawed and we lose massive amounts of points for an unwinnable game do you at least agree that this is a problem? If I get stomped for having a 800 elo teammate versus two 1800’s, so be it but make me lose like -5 points rather than -30.

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You say that, until you actually have to stay in longer queues.
45 minutes, 1:30 hours, 3 hours…

If the game gets longer queues, there will be less matches at any time, it will lose players even faster.

It is at less than 2k players right now, that is a dead game.
Compare to AoE2 DE:

Total War Warhammer 2:

You need at least 10k players to have proper matchmaking.

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I do agree that the game is dying and if the playerbase shrinks even more, we will need the devs to implement a better custom game system. This is basically how it happened in aoe3 legacy so im pretty sure aoe3de will eventually follow the same path.

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Sadly, but good matchmaking is impossible, under any system, with such a small population.

Keep mind that those 1907 players are not all in MP, at least half (if not 70%) are playing Singleplayer.

There is no way to get decent automatic matchmaking for this game, anymore.

Hmm maybe its time for me to try out total war: warhammer II. I did enjoy dawn of war but i see this is more turn based. Should be interesting.

It is completely different to Dawn of War, in every regard.
The Real Time portion is Real Time Tactics, not Real Time Strategy, so whatever you bring with you to the battle, is all you have, no reinforcements.

Oh well thats a shame. Might try it out anyway.

I’ve edited my original post a bit in order to try to put the main focus on fixing elo gains/losses, as that is the next best solution if matchmaking can’t be adjusted too much due to the limited player base. I’d feel much better about playing with 700 elo teammates if I didn’t lose -30, but a low amount like -5 ish.

the Elos you listed for the games make it sound like the servers added up the players Elo and thought it was balanced as opposed to making sure that each team has similar elos’. I think this was also an issue for aoe2 de at launch

each teams total elo is roughly balanced but not for team members

I understand that, my complaint with that matchup lies with the elo gains, not how evenly matched it was. If the elos are roughly balanced, then why did i gain no points for the win?

I’ve edited the original post to focus more on normalizing elo gains/losses than fixing matchmaking because it seems that may be the better approach.

Completely agree, rating changes clearly don’t seem to take in to account the rating of your teammates when making the calculation on how your rating increases or decreases after a game, based on observing how rating changes between me and my teammates over a few hundred games.

When there is a rating difference between teammates, the lower rated teammate when compared to a higher rated teammate will always gain more points for a win and will lose less points for a loss. This is significantly exaggerated as the rating difference between teammates increases, which clearly is giving too much “credit” to the lower rated teammate and not enough to the higher rated teammate. It’s as if the rating calculation is completely ignoring the rating of your teammates.

The way it is now, you get a huge rating boost (typical for decent players is 200-300) by queuing up with the highest rated friends willing to play with you and not playing with random mates, which seems to be the case for most people on the top of the ladder. In a 3v3 your 2 mates have more impact in your likelihood to win or lose than your own play, but their rating has no direct impact in your rating calculation on win or loss, so it’s probably more accurate to change the ladder to a “friend skill rating” rather than “team rating”. I’m open to suggestions for better names for the team ladder


Exactly, I agree with everything you just wrote. Legacy may have had problems with abusing PR and other things but at least team games were able to be found relatively quickly and fairly. It’s definitely tough to tackle this problem cleanly though because custom games are better for 2v2/3v3 Randoms due to the small player-base size, but they cant be rated in DE because of elo abuse via kicking players until you get a good matchup and/or point trading.

Ultimately, fixing the elo system to take into account your team’s rating as a whole would definitely go a LONG way to improving the ladder experience.

Just a lazy elo system at the moment with not much thought provided.

I kind of given up on these devs. It’s like the 1st rts game they have developed

^ This man is completely correct. This has been slightly talked about in other topics concerning the ELO system and trying to get the old ranking system back. The ELO system works better for 1v1 because you can more easily find games near your skill level, but filling up a 2v2 or 3v3 is harder and the player base is too small to make anything fair.

The proper solution would be to somehow increase the player base and sustain it. But looking at the Steam player count history, we lost the original 10k from 2020 Oct due to bugs.

The game has improved since then, but now people are shifting conversation to the multiplayer issues and game balance.

Regardless, I don’t know if the ELO system will ever straighten itself out, due to the inability to attract and retain players. AOE3DE has a likely chance of becoming like AOE3TAD, retaining a very small base of hardcore players.

Even then, players like myself stuck with AOE3TAD simply due to love for the game and the ability to get fair/even matches in multiplayer most of the time. I don’t even hop on the game that much anymore, anticipating a player drop on either team, or a super noob pulling my team down.

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At this point, the only way to increase the playerbase, is to actually put MP balance aside for a while, and launch an expansion DLC to regenerate interest in the game.

Bug fixes and stability is also more important than balance, right now, but without new stuff, this game is a “seen and done” by the RTS crod, and there is no reason to come back.

AoE2 did it thusly, and each expansion brought in new players, and increased player retention.

New content is the key, as far as I see it.

True. When the game was stabilized more in December, the player base also started to stabilize. You’d see like 3000-4000 online on Steam, peaking at like 5000-6000 that day.

But it has recently dwindled down over time. Last time I logged in, there were about ~1400 people online (peaking at 3000), which seems regular now.

If the devs release new content, I can see a spike of people coming back to AOE3 for a bit. But I don’t think they will stay - they will probably come back to these forums and complain about the other issues ongoing: the disgruntling ELO system or bad casual lobby matchmaking.

Even I’m getting discouraged from playing the game sometimes. I’m just really tired of pairing up with really bad random players. You don’t get as many stimulating, back-and-forth games you used to have: it honestly feels like you’re always playing a 2v3, 1v3, 3v2, 4v2, 1v2 or some B.S.

Most will go away after a while, but each expansion grows the captive audience aswell.
This has been proven by AoE2 HD, which saw spikes in playerbase whenever a new expo was released, but also grew the longterm playerbase with each subsequent expansion.

This is the future of the videogame industry, specially for RTS, which is otherwise unmonetisable. If a product is to retain players, it most grow in content every once in a while, or players will just leave and go towards products that are still growing.

Yep, matchmaking is quite sad to be fair.
Best way to play ranked team games is only play with friends rather than having a random guy as your team mate. Otherwise its just way better to play 1v1

I wonder why people talk so much about a game they know so little.

Here’s the population of AOE3 since 2012 (can’t see before, cause of steam)

It was ALWAYS between 1000 and 5000 online. this is our community. The game is well alive as it always lived with that population. Age of Empires® III (2007) - Steam Charts

What you do is unlogical, it’s like comparing the 12000 players of AOE2 rn to Call of Duty and saying you can’t have a proper matchmaking on AOE2 in terme of playerbase.