Forcing players to not play arabia will never be the answer just like how removing family share in its entirety will never be the answer to smurfs; what should happen is to change the environment for the better.
In terms of making it better for the map pool would be to stop placing non-random map(non-normal start) gamemodes such as the nomad gamemode and nomad maps as well as mega random(until mega random starts with a minimum and maximum of 1 tc, 3 vills,+civ bonus, 1 normal scout or eagle warrior depending on civ, it will be considered a separate game-mode for this argument, and once it gains the normal start of the random maps queue proper it will deserve its place in the random maps(normal start) queue.) To reduce the amount of ‘instant ban’ maps and allow for more possible maps the playerbase will actually consider playing.
Another item is to allow multiple starred or favorite/preferred maps, around 2 or 3 to improve player satisfaction when being able to have a chance to gain a map they like rather than getting set together with a player that bans the only map you favorited out of a list of very few wanted maps and most being insta bans and ones you just hate less which increases the odds to 100% of them getting their preferred map if you didn’t ban that one.
And if both players happen to star a map together it will be the one to be played which will increase satisfaction even more. If more than one is starred together then either way whichever is picked the player’s happiness levels will improve.
For you anti civ picker users out there, the closest restriction I will ever approve of is simple; you pick the civ, you start the queue, the civ is locked in just like the civ bans/favorites are.
Civ picking, specifically hidden civ picking is a wonderful boon for the playerbase and should never be taken away.
This is my opinion: remove ranked mirror, it’s frustrating when playing against the same civ, it’s alright if both players pick the same civ, but it should never be intentionally mirrored.
(Some ideas borrowed from other threads of mine as well as a few recent replies towards some posts I heavily disagree with)
Further: Add chat for parties before the queue starts as well as within the queue itself to allow for consistent and better player to player communication in-game.
For both team and 1 vs 1 place a max 2k normal elo limit, and place an additional elo counter that starts when above 2k yet has no effect on who you’re queued against(the system will count you as 2k elo, and to go below 2k just lose the second counter’s elo to 0) this will allow the current setup to continue while having the populace receive a proper push back into their proper elos on both 1 vs 1 and team games while removing elo inflation from the equation properly, which will also in turn make it harder to smurf using elo disparity, since elos will be condensed properly without inflation.
Instate a 500 elo difference limit in ranked team games for the players on the same side to further reduce possible smurfing using elo disparity.
Reset the team game elo once the 2k limit is in place, as it is much too inflated.
Don’t reset 1vs1 elo as inflation isn’t high enough there to justify the reset, just have elo above 2k set towards the second elo counter.
For those anti-family share users out there; the only restriction I would allow would be to keep them away from the 1 vs 1 and team random map and empire war ranked queues and later the ranked lobbies. However, the unranked lobbies must gain a ranking system of their own that the family share users may play in so that smurfing does not worsen there. The users of lobbies, be them ranked or unranked must have an ingame visible rank so that the playerbase regains player to player regulation that befits the users. No more ‘noob lobbies’ filled with unranked accounts, because that’s where smurfing is most prevelant. add visible unranked lobby ranks. And add the 2k limit + secon counter elo to all future elo rankings.
1 vs 1 has the least smurfs, team games have some, but the lobbies is where it’s most prevalent; do not worsen things for our new players. Do not worsen things for the ranked queues by adding overly restricting features, instead make the environment healthier for the playerbase while at the same time reducing the chance to smurf using the same. No overly restrictive features and most certainly no outright removing family sharing or forcing players off certain maps without giving them a chance to have other maps starred and stop putting insta-ban seperate game-modes into both the 1 vs 1 and team ranked queues.
Let’s ensure age of empires 2 outlives chess and the board-game ‘go’