Well-known Call of Duty RalphsValve has claimed that Activision have taken steps to address the many complaints about skill-based matching in the franchise, starting with Modern Warfare 2.
Skill-based matchmaking is one of the most controversial features in Call of Duty history. Designed to match players with opponents of equal skill, many fans of the series claim it makes the game too difficult to enjoy, with players required to constantly play at their best to win.
In older versions of the franchise, SBMM wasn’t a factor, so it was easier to jump into games with random opponents and find success. For some, public matches now feel like work, and fans have spent years begging Activision to scrap it entirely.
While that doesn’t appear to be the case, leaker RalphsValve does claim that Activision are aware of the complaints surrounding the system, and have actually assigned one of their studios to work on refining and improving it.
Writing on WhatIfGaming, RalphsValve states that Demonware have been specifically tasked with revamping skill-based matchmaking, with someone close to Activision reportedly revealing that the system is “complicated, but pragmatic,” and they are “always looking for ways on improving every facet that contributes to a product’s success.”
With that in mind, teams have been working on a new system that accommodates players of all skill levels. According to RalphsValve’s source, the new SBMM framework will feel less punishing for high-skill players, while still allowing low-skill players to say in lobbies with opponents of similar talent.
The source also claimed that there are plans to incorporate Bot Pools into both Warzone 2 and the rumored DMZ mode, but only for those who have extreme difficulty playing the game. Disbanding lobbies will also remain in Call of Duty for the foreseeable future, with the source claiming that the franchise’s SBMM system would “collapse” if they were removed.
The report suggests that skill-based matchmaking only became a focus for Activision and Call of Duty’s development studios after 2019’s Modern Warfare, when they started to plan for the system’s future development and maintenance.
How this new system will work remains to be seen. While some players will remain frustrated at reports that the player base will be divided based on skill, it appears that SBMM is going nowhere.
Modern Warfare 2 leaks are coming thick and fast now. Already, we’ve seen reports that classic fan-favorite maps won’t be available when the game launches, along with a look at the map set to be used in the game’s rumored Tarkov-inspired DMZ mode.
Image Credits: Activision / Infinity Ward
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