What do you think about how the ranked system was handled/developed for Overwatch?

Let me start off by saying I believe the overwatch development team is extremely talented at what they do and I am making this post because I think it might be able to assist future overwatch development. I have played since release and I don’t think the game launched with competitive, which could be some of the reasoning behind how it turned out because it was probably not ready. And if you see anything wrong with what I say please say what I messed up on or what I am seeing incorrectly I would appreciate it.

Misplaced player = someone who’s actual skill/rank does not match their in game estimated rank, either too low or too high. A player can be misplaced for many reasons including: Getting boosted to a rank above your rank, letting others play on your account, connectivity issues, ranked system made a mistake, got artificially inflated or deflated by a smurf (such as “bronze to GM” challenges and the like), consistency issues (such as not being able to focus so sometimes they are inconsistent and sometimes they are consistent or tilt), artificially inflated or deflated by another misplaced player, inflated disproportionately due to group queues giving one team a disadvantage, abusing unbalanced champions before they are nerfed in ranked, and ofc trolls/non-competitive players. There are more reasons why someone can be misplaced in a competitive ranking system but

Problems I believe led to where we are now – Season 1 started with 100 scale ranking system with coin flip. I believe this resulted in some misplaced players because of the ranking system among the other reasonings states above.

  • I believe Season 2 took into account players ranks in season 1 despite the ranking system changing to remove coin flip and adding ranks. Which kept some of the players misplaced. And almost every time there is a misplaced player in a game the people in that game will now be misplaced, it may be a small or a large amount depending on the gap between the misplaced player’s rank and the game’s estimation of their rank.

  • I believe in the beginning, heroes could be used in ranked immediately after their release, and if not, very soon after their release. This was until later with the new heroes being banned in comp for a bit longer before being playable. Which results in even more people getting misplaced. This coupled with the fact that several dlc characters added were not as balanced as the current characters. Led to even more players being misplaced or players being misplaced further.

  • Sombra. IMO this abomination of a character was ridiculous. Her ability to hack and disable a champion in a game that some characters are centered around their abilities was a bizarre concept to me. Tank characters generally rely on their abilities to buff, protect, and/or assist their teammates throughout the game. So adding a character with the ability to disable these heroes should have been done carefully and cautiously. If I remember correctly she wasnt insanely op on her release but soon after that they buffed her by making her hack faster with lower cd or something. And then they continued to buff her by improving her cds and gun adding more passive abilities like permastealth, wall hacks on hacked targets. I believe they buffed her non stop until they added the cd when you get interrupted hacking and then continued buffing her. I believe the reason she is unbalanced as of now and most of her life is that her kit allows her to disable one person which can change the flow of a team fight instantly. Not to mention her ult which can basically disable a whole teams abilities except if they are saved by Zarya bubble or whatever. But very few other dps heroes have had this much potential value for the low amount of risk.

  • Little to no incentive to play PTR, which more PTR players and testing might have had more impact on fixing balancing issues quicker.

  • I believe that private profiles in competitive allowed people to play on heroes or roles they are not proficient in, which in high elo could lead to misplaced players. IMO if a one trick plays something they didn’t play to get to that rank they are usually throwing even if it’s unintentionally, especially in very high SR games.

  • Overwatch league was too strict and not really casual viewer friendly. Not to mention they went to YouTube when most live streaming viewer are on twitch. But if casual players can be incentivized to watch an OWL game or entertained during an OWL game the views will go up which is good for the game as a whole which also gives them more freedom and resources to improve the game.

  • No real punishment for reporting people that are toxic or trolling. Chat restrictions are good and all but if someone is toxic there can be shadow bans like other games where if too many people report you from your recent game then you get placed with other people who also got reported a lot. The good behavior mechanic was a good touch but it has no real incentive for players to behave well because people with the lvl 5 were with people who had lvl 3, lvl 2, and even lvl 1 honor regularly so behaving good didn’t mean you got better teammates and it doesn’t meant you get exclusive items or icons. You got loot boxes which everyone who played comp a lot has gotten pretty much everything so they don’t care about loot boxes. A suggestion for improvement would have been to make it so you can vote down peoples honor. Punishments for voting down people who received lots of positive endorsements. And if you get too many negative endorsements you can’t give negative endorsements till you get back up to a decent endorsement level. Just made this up on the spot so might be scuffed system but I think the way endorsements are now isn’t the best.

  • I remember Jeff saying something about not wanting to incentivize competitive and he wished they never added competitive points. I don’t agree with this and I could be entirely wrong. However, I think that while incentivizing competitive would increase the amount of boosters and cheaters it would also increase the competitiveness of ranked play. Because there was a lot of people I met in competitive who did not seem to really care if they won or lost and were kinda playing like it was quick play with comms. This lack of competitiveness could be from many things but I think the main reason is that there is no tangible incentive for playing ranked and climbing other than verbal bragging rights which only go so far. They were enough for me but I believe with trophies in game such as skins for each rank above diamond (not just shitty icons and sprays) would benefit the game more than it would hurt it. Because competitive points can be earned while you are throwing or while you are trying your best so some people will believe the only in game incentive is the sprays and icons for top 500 so they don’t care if they win or lose.

Read more:  What Makes a Good Player Good? And How Do I Become One?

I love this game and I feel like it’s kind of been dying because I’ve watched my favorite pro players and streamers lose interest over time and quit or my friends so the same and go to other games just because overwatch really isn’t as fun as it used to be or because there isn’t really anything to do but grind ranked or mess around in custom games. I hope when overwatch 2 comes, it revitalizes the community and does amazing with ranked. Or before then hopefully 😀

Source: reddit.com

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