Today I’d like to discuss the fact that - more than one year after release - the lobbies are still in a pretty bad shape.
In the weeks and months after the release there were a lot of complaints because the lobby system was plagued by a lot of “technical” issues that prevented people from playing the game. Those issues mostly seem to be resolved, at least to my knowledge.
Still there are a lot of conceptional issues as well as technical issues that do not prevent anybody from playing but still should be addressed.
Coming back to the game after mor than six months of pause, I’m actually surprised that the state of the lobbies is now even worse than it has been in spring 2020.
We still see lobbies that are full in the lobby browser. This results in the lobby browser consisting of 80% lobbies that you can’t join anyway because they are already full. It’s totally unclear to me why it’s done like this. Nobody wants to see full lobbies, it just complicates the proccess of finding a match. There should at least be a filter to exclude full lobbies.
We still can’t filter out lobbies that contain AI players. So we don’t only have to mentally filter out the full lobbies, we also have to click on each lobby to check if it’s somebody who cares to play against AI. This further complicates the proccess of finding a match, because now you basically have the whole screen full of useless lobbies (because they are either full or have AI players in it)
(Both of this hasn’t been much of a problem in HD because they didn’t show full lobbies in the browser there and because players who find it funny to open a multiplayer lobby against AI player fortnately were much more rare in HD.)
- The “unranked ELO” (the one that you for example can see on aoe2.net) now seems more bugged than ever:
– It still is “mathematically” totally wrong: Players typically seem to get significantly more points for winning games than for losing them, leading to the fact that people who lose two thirds of their games are able to get a high ELO just by playing a lot of matches. They keep climbing and climbing, simply because they get more points in that on third of matches that they win than they are losing in the two thirds that they lose. Therefore this “unranked ELO” is more or less useless to even vaguely determine the skill of a player in the lobby.
– It’s now technically worse than ever: In a lot of matches it’s simply bugged so that there is no unranked ELO awarded at all. We used to curse the +0 ELO bug in HD that affected maybe 5-10% of the matches… now it’s almost 50%.
– While a lot of “legitimate” games aren’t counted because of the bug, on the other hand we have a lot of “absurd” games that are counted. For example all the games that end within the first 20 seconds because somebody dropped at the start are counted. Who leaves first, loses ELO. Or look at games with uneaven teams… counted too. Also unthinkable in HD.
So in it’s current state, “unranked ELO” is obviously useless. This means it should either be fixed or removed.
Personally I’d prefer if it was fixed. Becaue if it was fixed we could go on to the next point that would improve the lobbies massively: Showing unranked ELO in the lobbies to get better matches.
P.S. I understand that a lot of people here don’t care for the lobbies at all because they are playing “matchmaking”. That’s fine. I hope you can restrain this time from spamming this thread with your opinions about custom lobbies being useless anyway etc. pp.