I am trying to understand why skill-based matchmaking (SBMM) is done so poorly. Particularly, if game studios just accept it is bad, or are there technical hurdles that need to be solved?
I am new to gaming #ThanksCovid, and I really enjoy FPS. Destiny, Valorant, Apex, Halo, and all of their SBMM are god-awful. I will never be a pro at this, which is fine. But I still love the challenge of getting better and learning builds/strats and such. But the constant getting 1 tapped by someone who is 1000 levels higher is infuriating. And I know I will get flamed by some who will say 'get gud'...
Outside of games, I play in adult sports leagues. At first, when I joined I started out in a recreation division. Then as I understood the game more, honed my skills, I moved to upper rec. Today I play in a few sports leagues and in volleyball we are now intermediate. I was given the time and space to 'get gud', something esport doesn't allow for, why? Furthermore, when you question the system you're flamed with a barrage of toxicity. Which honestly, IMO, seems to be fueled by these archaic systems that place a new player against a "pro". Why is SBMM so bad? Do game studios not care? Are there technical issues? There has to be a better way. Why does this seem acceptable to gamers and to the creators?
I am a software developer by day and recently have been dabbling in game development. The solution seems simple, which is why I am shocked that this is still such a problem. These games have endless amounts of data, they know if your skill is good or not. So what gives?
In volleyball, a skilled player can pass the ball with at least some level of accuracy. Maybe they can set correctly and even spike. There are data points you can tell if the person is skilled or not. Not just wins and losses.
In an FPS (or any game really) each game could define a "skilled" player. Perhaps it is a ratio of body to headshots. Or maybe it is the ability to strafe. Perhaps for healers, it is the amount of damage you repair. The point being every game can define its version of a skilled player.
So again, do games studios not care? Are their technical hurdles?