Respawn director dives into Apex’s new matchmaking criteria and retirement of old system

A new system for better teams and lobbies.

Respawn Entertainment released a deep dive into Apexs multiplayer systems on the official website today, detailing how matchmaking is defined for creating lobbies, why the current skill-based matchmaking system is being retired, and the creation and testing of a new system.

Apex Legends has entered its fourth year of service with season 15, bringing a new legend and map, balance changes to weapons and abilities, and additional cosmetics in the most recent collection event. With this new season, Apex has broken its previous record for its highest player count, showcasing the continuous growth of the battle royale. 

Sammy Duc, a technical director at Respawn and representative of the matchmaking team, has been vocal about changing the system away from skill-based matchmaking (SBMM), with Respawns news clearly defining what matchmaking is to Apex and the concepts that guide its current iteration of SBMM. The current system takes into account the account progression through an internally tracked skill rating, which groups players into discrete buckets of skill distribution.

These statistics pair up with a matchmaking algorithm that uses a highest distribution rating when creating a team of three. The highest skill rating between three players defines the bucket for the team, no matter how low-rated the weakest player is. Respawn uses this system for both pubs and ranked lobbies with the intention to guard competitive integrity against exploitation, such as smurf accounts and boosters.

But this system affects new players joining seasoned Apex veterans, leading to large skill differences when pre-made squads have drastically different skill ratings between each team member. Many players have voiced their discontent with the current matchmaking system, with no beginner playlist or game mode for new players to learn the game. Apexs matchmaking system has previously been called into question, with players putting the burden on themselves to make groups for a more pleasant experience.

Respawn plans for the new skill measurement algorithm to have higher accuracy with a larger amount of skill buckets, accounting for results that are predictive of a players performance. Right now, players are seated into static skill bucket lobbies, where the game starts once it has reached 60 players. The new system introduces changes to the lobby search frame, with an emphasis on finding a balance between skill difference and wait times, with live results showing a tighter data distribution between player skill and wait times.

The new matchmaking systems are live in select regions and game modes for testing, with plans to roll out the changes one region at a time. Respawn plans to continuously monitor the data for season 15, with no official release date for when the changes will affect all regions and servers.

Latest comments
No comments yet
Why not be the first to comment?