Oh look, who after almost a year decided to put a new blogpost up. And about Escape From Tarkov, to boot. Well, everyone’s talking about it, and so am I, obviously, and about a topic many people are complaining about: Matching. So here’s an idea: Instead of randomly dumping level 5 people with level 40 people onto the same map and expecting everyone to be able to compete, how about this:
First, we divide people into two groups: Looters, and Killers. How? Well, that will require some stats-tracking, but it’s nothing that’s not aready being done. Over the past period of time, say 14 days to a month, check in which area the player made the most EXP: Looting, or killing, and if you made more EXP in Looting, you are assigned the Looter group, otherwise the Killer group. Looters will get matched with Looters, and Killers with Killers. That would satisfy the common complaint that “there’s not enough PvP going on!” as well as the “I’m get insta-killed at the spawnpoint by full-geared chads!” at the same time.
Second, there’s obvious differences inside the group, so we need to also look at the current skill level. I suggest to do that via the median total EXP gained over the last number of matches, say 30. The player at the top of the queue decides if it’ll be a Looter or a Killer match. Then the players in the queue who are the closest to that players median EXP over the last 30 matches (up to a margin of at least 1500 EXP, or 30%) get put onto a match. That way people with similar skill levels get put onto the same map.
Finally, to avoid long queueing times and add a factor of entropy to the whole system so people will still be able to complain (hey, it’s important!), people who wait more than 3 minutes for a match get to skip the queue and will be put into the next available match, ignoring if they’re a looter or a killer and what their median EXP is.
I’ve put some thought into this system, and despite no matching system ever being perfect, I feel like this is still so so SO much better than what there is now. Which feels more like “Take the first 10 people off the queue and wish them luck.”