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Published: July 3, 2023

Written by: Stoyan Todorov

  • The company continues to iron out the game’s issues
  • It is currently focusing on its Internal Matchmaking Rating (MMR)
  • Blizzard said it’s focusing on easing new players into the game

Players have long had issues not understanding how Overwatch 2’s ranking system works so Blizzard finally revealed details about the game’s MMR.

Blizzard Updates Players

It has become somewhat of a rule for newly released games to come with a truckload of glitches and issues, and Overwatch 2 is no exception. Upon release, the game had a lot of problems, ranging from minor visual glitches to game-breaking bugs that lock players in the spawn. To their credit, Blizzard has been trying to iron out the many kinks the game has.

However, one problem that still remains persistent is Overwatch 2’s matchmaking system. Players have been calling on the dev team to rework how the system is implemented and run. This is why Blizzard finally addressed the issue by explaining how the game’s Internal Matchmaking Rating (MMR) works.

“In the first part of our two-part deep dive on matchmaking and competitive we’ll look at how matchmaking works under the hood,” Blizzard wrote in a new blogpost, “and answer some outstanding questions around how MMR is determined and factored into the system.”

So, How Does Overwatch 2’s MMR Work?

Blizzard stressed that the system is there to create balanced matches based on an approximation of each player’s skills. “Everyone has an internal matchmaking rating (MMR) that’s a numerical value to describe your skill relative to everyone else,” Blizzard’s explanation reads. “However, MMR isn’t an absolute value, meaning your MMR can change even if your personal skill stays the same. This could indicate the general population is getting better or worse compared to you.”

It’s important to note that a player’s MMR is based not only on their ranked matches but on all game modes. Additionally, a player’s outward-facing skill tier or division is not included in the formulas for creating a match. Furthermore, a player’s rank visible on their profile isn’t the same as their MMR.

This means that a player’s MMR will be adjusted only after wins, losses, and if a player is returning to the game after a long time away from Overwatch 2. “We only adjust your MMR after you win or lose a game or if you come back after not playing for a long time,” Blizzard wrote. “Your MMR is unaffected when we lower your rank at the beginning of a season, and everyone in your matches has a similar MMR as you.”

Blizzard further explained how the system works, stating that the team wishes to help ease new players into Overwatch 2 with the way the game creates matches. The company said that it’s working on changes to counteract the fact that new players seem to be losing their initial matches more than they should.

“This trend wasn’t leveling out enough by the time they’d played many more matches. The win-rates of new players should be normally distributed, meaning most should be hovering around a 50% win-rate, but instead, the distribution was skewed with new players losing at higher rates.”

Blizzard said balancing this is more of a challenge as new players don’t yet have enough data to determine their MMR. To remedy this, new players start with an MMR lower than average and it is calculated faster than normal. “We want to adjust a player’s initial MMR as quickly as possible because until their MMR is more properly calibrated, we’re not able to make fair matches,” Blizzard wrote.

The company concluded that it is still working on the system by acquiring more data and tuning variables in the hopes of making the game fun for everybody.

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