Call of Duty devs respond to MW3 SBMM after major backlash

Luca Di Marzo
MW3 Operators

Call of Duty players have been calling on the devs to address the controversial MW3 SBMM mechanic since the game’s launch, and the recent backlash has finally led to an official response.

Skill-based matchmaking, or SBMM, has been a hot topic within the Call of Duty community for a few years now. SBMM is a suspected matchmaking feature that groups players of similar skill levels up in Call of Duty lobbies, effectively leveling the playing field.

While players have suspected that SBMM has been a part of the past few Call of Duty titles, the devs or Activision have never mentioned its existence throughout the years. Following the launch of Modern Warfare 3, discourse around the SBMM feature seemed to reach a new peak as more and more players voiced their desire for its removal.

The backlash from MW3 players has caused the devs to finally address MW3 SBMM and skill-based matchmaking in general for the very first time.

Call of Duty Team finally address SBMM

In a statement from the Call of Duty Team on November 30, 2023, the existence of SBMM was confirmed as one of several matchmaking factors in Modern Warfare 3.

The devs started by addressing the concern surrounding the topic: “We know there is a lot of interest in the matchmaking experience, especially around how skill contributes to how lobbies and matches are put together.”

They then explained the different factors that contribute to creating MW3 matches, including skill: “It’s a large effort that we’ve worked on for many years, and our approach combines latency, search time, and skill, along with many other factors, to try to find the best match experience for you.”

This was followed by an admission that they can’t share more details with players yet, “we haven’t spent the time to pull together all of our work to share with you our insights and improvements over the many years.”

Players can expect more updates and transparency when it comes to SBMM. The statement promises to revisit the topic after Season 1: “We’re looking forward to doing that in the coming weeks after Season 1 launches, and we’ll also make it a part of our ongoing discussions with the community.”

For more Modern Warfare 3, check out how to unlock the TAQ Eradicator LMG or the best weapons in MW3 ranked.

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About The Author

Luca is an Associate Editor at CharlieIntel. An accomplished, writer with interests in sports and gaming alike, Luca is focused on Call of Duty and FIFA as a content creator. After earning his BA in English Literature at Concordia University, he began writing for Gamelevate, OddsShark, and H4X. Luca joined CharlieIntel in 2021. You can reach Luca at [email protected], or via X @TheLucaDiMarzo.