Match Abandonment

Fellow Insiders,

Haven’t posted in a while, but recently started playing more again. I think we can all agree that the game has come quite far over the last year and the two new civs will be a step in the right direction.
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Things are far from perfect, but I do think there is only one glaring and critical issue: Match abandonment with no punishment.

I’ve really been enjoying playing 3v3 or 4v4 matches lately, but I would say that only somewhere between 10-20% of those games actually start without someone dropping. As an anecdotal example, I attempted to play 5 matches today and all 5 lasted less than 1 minute because people left as soon as the game started.

As harsh as it may sound, there has to be punishment for match abandonment, regardless of the reason.

My proposal would go something like this:

Unranked Games

  • First match abandonment = 30 minute cooldown
  • Second match abandonment (in a 24 hour period) = 2 hour cooldown
  • Third match abandonment (in a 24 hour period) = 24 hour cooldown

Ranked Games

  • First match abandonment = 2 hour cooldown
  • Second match abandonment (in a 24 hour period) = 12 hour cooldown
  • Third match abandonment (in a 24 hour period) = 48 hour cooldown

This would really massively improve the experience for those playing the game. Nothing is more frustrating than waiting 5-10 minutes to find a match, only for someone to abandon it after 30 seconds.

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Or instead of that, just double elo loss for players who leave in the first 8 minutes of round and if they do leave before 8 minutes, remove elo loss for their teammates so they can just resign!

And for nonranked matches, have ai take over for the player who left early!

While I want there to be penalty for player who quits prematurely, but first match abandonment is ridiculous and stupid same is 2nd and 3rd.

What if you get disconnected or game crashes? Fun to be on cooldown for 2 hours or 12hours. Its fairly common for AOE4 to crash and disconnects can happen to anyone.

For example I had another window open in AOE4. I think it was the learn with the unit/buildings tab while my match started. I knew match started and I was still on desktop just waiting game to go to loading screen and once I was in loading sceen I still had the learn tab open so I closed it and game crashed.

Makes no sense to penalize from first few “leaves” because it can be technical issue with no malicious intend. But ppl who constantly leave from games repeat this behavior.

Punishments like that are bad because you are literally compromising matchmaking quality in order to “punish” a player. It just hurts everyone. Especially the lower level people who will get even more leavers than normal (yes they already get more than normal because leavers will naturally be lower, but this just doubles down on that).

How does it punish people if you dont affect their elo when their teammate abandons the game at the start of the round?

This is the part I am talking about. Sorry I should have removed the last part of your quote.

Manipulating elo as a form of “punishment” hurts everyone because it compromises matchmaking.

The point of elo is not some kind of “reward”. The entire point is to create balanced games between evenly matched players.

So just do regular elo loss for early quitter then little or no elo loss for teammates who are playing 3v4 from the get go

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Can be manipulated too easily. Have low elo account in your team to boost others higher elo and if the match up in terms of elo looks unfavorable just have low elo account abandon the match and not take normal elo penalty on high elo accounts

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tbh they should severly punish people who dodge match tbh. Can never get to play on watermap due the players always dodging it.

You can just increase the amount of elo loss for the player who leaves with accumulating returns.

You can also do less than full normal elo loss for players who get screwed in 3v4 but its not as easy to exploit if they try your method, bc they will still be losing elo, and will probably lose 3v4 regardless, but they get less punished than a normal fair loss!

Why is it stupid and ridiculous? You just wasted the time of 5-7 other people.

If you disconnected for whatever reason, you get a cooldown. You can use that time to figure out your connection issue or play a single player game before you jump back into multiplayer.

I think ELO punishments wouldn’t do anything to fix the issue. Folks who disconnect would now just have easier matches going forward.

I think AoE should just use the industry standard for this, which is cooldowns before you can play a multiplayer match again.

For example, Counter Strike handles it this way:

  • First cooldown (level 1) - lasts 30 minutes.
  • Second cooldown (level 2) - lasts 2 hours.
  • Third cooldown (level 3) - lasts 24 hours.
  • Fourth cooldown (level 4) - lasts 1 week.

A week of clean play will reduce an account’s cooldown level by one. An account whose cooldown level has been reduced to level 2 through clean play would receive a level 3 (24 hour) cooldown on their next infraction.

Please note that cooldown levels can exceed level 4. Players whose cooldown level exceeds level 4 will need an extended period of clean play to have their cooldown level reduce beneath level 3.

That seems like an excellent implementation and seems to work well for one of the most popular games in the world.

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If people wanna smurf and play against lower skill players, they can lose on purpose, you cant really stop that…

Also cooldowns dont stop teammates from suffering elo losses when theyre forced to play a 3v4…

The best fix for disconnects is reconnecting a player if they fix their connection issue…

Combined with–

Its easy to abuse. Already explained that and then in legit cases where game crashes / connection goes down suggestion looks to punish them for no reason.

Lets say we have A B C players. C player is the one who leaves if odds are against them. A B gets less penalty and are getting boosted this way. Then in next game they do same and next game same. This means A B are able to keep higher elo by dodging games by using C player as someone who takes the penalty and if you suggest that they would monitor this and inflict elo loss to A and B if they repeat this over and over. What if they change C to D player?

What if someone who is playing just normally with no malicious intend and gets disconnected and next game game crashes? There is no reconnect feature so once game is down you’re taking the penalty even if you would be able to rejoin after 30seconds or even 1 minute. I had a game like this today when my connection went down for minute ## #### ## ##re heavily winning the game and it was basically over in couple of minutes if I had connection up. Luckily my random ally finished the game and won, but if we had reconnect I could’ve rejoined and help out.

Plenty of ppl crash from game and without solving this first it would just welcome unhappy players who feel they get unfairly punished while other ppl would abuse this to their advantage.

The vast majority of disconnects and abandons are within the first ~1 minute of the game starting. Obviously the match is just abandoned and no one should suffer any impact on their elo.

However, the player (or players) who disconnected needs a cooldown period, as is an industry standard.

I don’t think an ELO conversation is really in any way related to match abandonment. I think games where a player disconnects within the first few minutes are basically logged as not having a result. The player that disconnected get a cooldown and everyone else just searches for a new game.

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Clearly you didn’t understand the point I was making.

Yes if player intentionally leaves then its going to waste other ppls time which I do agree, but you’re literally suggesting insanely harsh punishment for couple of leaves which is stupid simply because anyone even you might leave the game with completely valid reason which results you being blocked from playing the game for hours.

And by valid reason I mean disconnects, power shortage, interned down and so on. There is so many variables into this that may cause player to drop out from match and its extremely unfair to block their access to game that they have paid because something unlucky happened.

Or would you be happy to take first 2h penalty because your internet went down for a bit and then when you have done waiting for 2h, your game crashes and you get 12hours penalty.

This is completely legit scenario that can happen to anyone regardless where they live and what kind of connection they run. Something unlucky can happen and it would be stupid and retarded to have them punished for something thats completely out of their control.

Much better option would be having reconnect feature and vote for surrender option. If players do not surrender then match is not concluded and if player(s) leave multiple times they’re subject to punishment aka getting blocked from playing ranked for x amount of time or other penalties. This also needs to be paired with active customer support that bans griefing so if player doesn’t get the vote surrender through they do nothing and in these cases they need to be banned.

This is very simple system that some games use to keep the integrity of ranked mode in check.

I don’t think the reason matters: Whether you are disconnected because of issues with your ISP or whether you disconnected because you want to leave the game for some other reason, you are the player that wasted everyone’s time. So therefore, you get a cooldown. As I said, you can use the time to figure out your connection issues or play a single player match.

Of course I’m not against a reconnect to game feature if you are able to do so quickly, but that’s a separate feature. Abandoning games is typically punished across most competitive games with increasing severity.

This isn’t some crazy new idea. It’s just a basic feature of modern multiplayer games in order not to ruin the game because someone is having technical issues or abusing the system in some way.

Tell me one game that puts you on block for 2 hours on first offense? I don’t know any, because none of the devs or companies want to deal with the crap they get from players that happen to get unlucky situation.

No its not players fault who gets disconnected during match for unknown reasons that cannot be predicted. There is 0 chance for you or anyone to predict if something is going to happen with your ISP, electricity, pc crashing and so on. All of these can just happen simply once and not after that for weeks or months so there is nothing to figure out.

There is not single household in world who has capabilities of ensuring that something unlucky won’t happen. And I bet you would be first one to cry about this if it happened to you couple of times and got cooldown.

You’re quite missing the mark so Imma gonna be as clear as possible. No im not against feature that gives punishment for repetitive leavers, but from first offense to 2nd offense multiple hours is too harsh and I already have explained why this is the case.

So Ill give you something I would think is more acceptable.

First offense no penalty (<- could be changed into something like 15-30mins)
2nd offense 10mins
3rd offense 1h
4th offense 10h.

Ppl who consistently leave the games continue to leave and those who have some random troubles will not and those they won’t be locked out of playing the game for no good reason

This can also be extended to monitor if player has tendencies to constantly leave games so the reset timer gets increased. So for example normal reset timer 24hours, but if algorithm detects repetitive leaves across multiple days then it increases the reset timer to couple of days. This way it ensures that repetitive leaves wont be able to reset their cooldown

It’s your responsibility to ensure that you can complete a match – this is especially true for ranked games, which is why punishments are harsher for ranked games vs unranked games (see my first post). Of course, if there is a way for devs to distinguish between you intentionally leaving (via a surrender a few min in) vs a disconnect, they can differentiate the cooldown times.

You aren’t blocking access to the game. You are giving the player a cooldown for multiplayer matches.

These aren’t mutually exclusive. I don’t know anyone that would be against a reconnect feature. Maybe the cooldown starts only if you havent’t successfully reconnected after ~3-5 min.

As I said, this isn’t some new idea. This is implemented extremely well in many competitive games, such as Counter Strike.

Counter-Strike, the most popular game on Steam.

To clarify 30 minute for unranked, 2 hours for ranked on first disconnect was my initial suggestion. The times can be modified of course. The most important thing is that there is some level of cooldown. This discourages abandonment extremely effectively.

Which is impossible. Like I have said. Im not against feature that punishes leavers, but 2hours into 12 hours on first and 2nd is way too harsh.

Like you mentioned CSGO has this, but first offense is 30mins which is much more tolerable than 2hours.

I didn’t pay to play single player. Im MP player and never touched single player those im being blocked from playing the game that I paid for if something unexpected happens and its completely impossible and ridiculous to expect that something doesn’t happen.

Well aware its not new idea and well aware that many games got this feature but none of them have at such lengths as you suggested and all of those games that have this added also got successful reconnect feature which AOE4 doesn’t have so before even considering what would be proper punishment on 1st or 2nd offense we need reconnecting possibility.

Also this system doesn’t work if there is option for 1 player to unconditionally surrender. Those there needs to be vote surrender option or not surrender at all meaning players need to fulfill victory conditions which leads many games to drag out so they need vote surrender system too.

Without putting the ground work to make functional and competitive environment, there is no possibility of making successful penalty system that is fair.

Not sure if you saw what I edited on one of my posts so going to quote it here