Hello all. I’ve been playing the game for several years including HD version as well as the unnofficial Voobly. The way matchmaking works is different across all these platforms.
The new ranking system in DE is cute and works fairly well for 1v1. It adds a bit of variety in allowing you to pick civ, as well as forcing a more varied map pool compared to competitive 1v1 in Voobly.
However, the ranked TG system is very bad.
The first problem:
It takes over 5 minutes to get a 2v2 and so far I haven’t been able to play a 4v4, and I presume most people have given up trying at this point. The playerbase feels small for this system and people don’t want to sit forever to find a game, so probably just people gave up trying.
The second problem:
There’s a large amount of the playerbase who specifically wants to play black forest - a relaxed wallable playstyle with explored settings, where rushing is high risk / high reward strat. This is also the best map for sneaking which is a whole playstyle of its own. After BF there is also a large group of people who like to play Arena, and finally a group of people who strictly want to play nomad or water map. Even with infinite players and no waiting queue, you have no bans and therefore you don’t really have the option to play BF 4v4 compared to HD or Voobly.
- jUsT pLaY uNrAnKeD
And this is as bad as I’ve ever seen. Since ranked TG doesn’t exist you pretty much have all TG players in the same bucket, this means you get incredibly unbalanced games and there is no way to balance the teams prior, as opposed to Voobly/HD.
But that’s not even the problem here. The issue is the amount of quitters due to unranked format.
- Lost a villager? leave game
- Getting rushed after neglecting walls? k, resign and move on
- Enemy team has more score than your team? guess its GG i just exit game
- Didn’t like map and you got flank position when you wanted pocket? Hmm, time to leave
- Anything slightly unpleasant? Resign!
And on top of this you have to add the huge amount of unwilling quitters that disconnected or crashed.
Today, I’ve played over 10 BF 4v4 games and not a single one made it to imperial age without a quitter. It’s so incredibly frustrating on a format where you boom for 30 min and suddenly there’s no point in playing anymore because of a drop. It’s a very unpleasant game experience. There is no reputation system to hold people responsible. Everything is uniform, you cannot properly balance a game, you cannot tell who is reliable player or not. People are desperately putting a title in their games asking for “NO QUITTERS” but this obviously doesn’t change a thing.
For me, and I presume many are on the same boat, team games is what we enjoy playing the most. It feels nice to be able to fall on allies shoulder for a minute, as well as carry them in the inverse situation. It allows for more strategy as you can 1v2 stall while allies go for 2v1 push. There’s also trade routes.
The game just feels incomplete now. If we check stats, there’s a majority of people playing TG than 1v1. This is because the amount of games on both modes is similar, yet TG carry 2-4x more players. Therefore I think this is a valid concern and the developers should look into this.
The solution is, in my humble opinion, instead of having the “ranked” vs “unranked” lobbies, make it “1v1” vs “Team Games” lobby. In either, you could have a “ranked” checkbox depending on your mood. There’s rarely people who go look for “whatever” game, you are generally decided towards one mode or the other, and it’s a much smarter question/division to make than game being ranked or not. Then we get to keep the pretty queue system for 1v1, and lobbies for TG (queue system just does NOT work for TG).
I feel like with the current instability of the game, this problem will most likely be ignored. But as a diehard AoE/BF player, it gives me peace to know I tried. Maybe with enough people on this same boat we can get them to notice. It would be nice to hear from the team, something like “possible” or “not likely” is enough, as we try to determine if commiting to long-term relationship with DE vs the alternatives is worth it.