Ranked Matchmaking Officially Coming to Dota2

On the off-chance that I have any readers who don’t already know this, the official Dota 2 blog confirmed that the “next major update will add a ranked matchmaking feature to the game.”  As for the listed specifics:

  • Ranked matchmaking is unlocked after approximately 150 games.
  • All players in the party must have unlocked the mode.
  • Currently, only All Pick, Captains Mode, and Captains Draft are available.
  • You may not participate in ranked matchmaking while in the low priority pool.
  • Coaches are not allowed in ranked matchmaking.
  • Matches played in normal matchmaking do not impact your ranked matchmaking MMR, and vice versa.
  • Your ranked MMR is visible only to you and your friends. The MMR used for normal matchmaking is not visible.
  • When you first start using ranked matchmaking, you will enter a calibration phase of 10 games. During this time, your ranked MMR will not be visible.

Nothing too surprising.  I have some concerns about having no group limitations, but if they think they can pull it off we’ll see how it goes.  It’s an interesting revelation that team and solo have different MMRs, but I wonder if that specifically refers to the “solo queue only” opt-in option in current matchmaking.

My biggest potential complaint are the modes.  It’s a good thing they’re limited to avoid splitting the pool, but it’s disappointing to have All Pick and then two modes where you have to trust a captain to draft in an environment where people are likely to complain about “MY MMR.”  I’d feel better about it if CD were more like RD as a middle ground with both pick phases and individual picks, but oh well.

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5 Responses to Ranked Matchmaking Officially Coming to Dota2

  1. Martin says:

    I agree with your sentiments on mode selection. Surprised that AP is one of the three modes. Other than Least Played, AP is probably the worst mode for determining MMR. I guess due to the extreme popularity of AP, Valve felt the need to include it.

    • phantasmal says:

      You’re probably right on why they included it, and that’s honestly one of my biggest problems with its inclusion.

      One of the biggest reasons for AP’s popularity is AP’s popularity. That is, a lot of people value the perception of match quality over the game mode. AP has the largest install base, so it’ll have the most people queuing in your MMR range, so it should have the fastest queues with the most closely matched games.

      Ranked mode is an opportunity to create an alternative to AP with a decent user base. You give up AP, and in exchange you get to see your rating. Maybe there’s a short term risk in doing this in that you have to evaluate which modes are acceptable replacements in the ranked queue and which aren’t, but it’s a long term benefit that’s worth the exploration.

      Part of the problem might be that the only other mode with complete hero selection is CM, and there are big obvious downsides to trying to make CM the main mode for a solo queue experience. But the release of a ranked queue would be a perfect time to re-evaluate the modes offered and test out alternatives, and I’m disappointed that that doesn’t appear to be happening.

  2. SoapDealer says:

    Totally agree with your reservations. I made a Reddit thread on Saturday talking about the problems of trusting a Captain in solo queue. My proposed solution was to have the highest MMR player on the team have priority on selecting captain. Not just because this is (presumably) the best player on the team, but also because it would add authority to their choices and prevent constant griping about the picks.

    http://www.reddit.com/r/DotA2/comments/1schiv/ranked_cd_and_cm_should_have_a_better_way_to/

    I seriously can’t believe they’re including All Pick in the ranked queue. The mechanics of All Pick are extremely open to gaming and abuse, either in waiting to counter-pick, waiting to ensure you aren’t counter-picked, or instantly locking in very strong heroes or combinations (exacerbated by the inclusion of unbalanced heroes who aren’t in CM yet). But at the same time, -cm and -cd are both unsuitable for solo play. It seems like a hasty and poorly thought out move by Valve.

  3. Chris says:

    By far the best game mode in my experience is random draft. Its generally prevents players playing specialist heros or specialist combinations whilst allowing good players to consider good picks without necessarily relying on standard counterpickets. It rewards players who have a good knowledge of a large number of heros and yet normally leaves enough alternatives to make reasonable picks. Luck does play a part, but not as much as say single draft. (And for God sake valve please increase the time for first pick)!

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