Shuffling Teams in Server Browser Matches


(Chris Mullins) #1

Match balance in Server Browser is a recurring topic. Currently the system allows you to call shuffle votes during a match, and the server automatically shuffles players once a match has finished to improve balance. This has many flaws though, as often players drop out and new ones connect, causing this shuffle to become irrelevant. The alternative is to shuffle just before the match begins and all players have connected. This does come with the downside of not being able to pick a team composition, or guaranteeing being on the same side as your friends.

Let us know which you would prefer using the poll below!


(Melinder) #2

@stayfreshshoe said:
This does come with the downside of not being able to pick a team composition

You can’t currently do this anyway. Your Merc picks are locked in at the exact same time as the lobby revealing which team you’ll be playing on.

@stayfreshshoe said:
or guaranteeing being on the same side as your friends.

Again, can’t really do this now unless you switch teams in the few short seconds of warmup there is, as you can no longer use the “SwitchTeam” console command in the pre-game lobby to swap teams.

Overall, there is nothing you can do to balance these matches. The sheer amount of players in the server means that balance is heavily based on randomness and Merc picks (e.g. # of shotguns, # of explosive spam etc.), or one team having one good player that will dominate the rest - things that can’t be controlled, basically. The mode itself screams “unbalanced”, so it only makes sense that the matches are that way.

Besides, the focus should be on implementing and maintaining an actual Competitive ruleset, not trying to balance a mode that is designed to be unbalanced.


(Mc1412013) #3

@stayfreshshoe please do more of these polls. This is some of the comunication we are asking for


(itaih1) #4

OR: Add the option:
IF ATTACKING : mercs x y z

IF DEFENDING: mercs a b c


(Ptiloui) #5

Really welcomed discussion and poll.

Im all for a better balance in server browser.

Team composition will be the same as if we were playing on Stopwatch, so don’t need team compo. And I absolutely want to play with (not against) friends, i’d go for CMM anyway.


(GatoCommodore) #6

me and my m8s dont really have an issue not being able in one team.
but other people does.

you cant really please everyone with this imo.
people will need to choose

also…
why not both?


(Chris Mullins) #7

@Mc1412013 said:
@stayfreshshoe please do more of these polls. This is some of the comunication we are asking for

Definitely!


(sdric) #8

Thanks for posting this!
I really enjoyed our dialogue on reddit about it.

Obviously it will still be tough to balance leavers. For those scenarios the shuffle function should be kept in addition to pre-game shuffling. If there’s really too many leavers in a match and restocking gets to odd players will still have to intervene.

It’s never going to be perfect and that’s fine, but it server browser team balancing is horrific right now and just has to improve. Pre-turn shuffling might already go a long way.

As we know private servers for those who dislike it are on their way :slight_smile:


(Unrivaled) #9

Seems like it’s shoe vs Smooth :smiley:


(Da_Mummy) #10

I mean if you want to play party you would play ranked or casual anyway. If I join one of those browser servers I’m either just having some fun or really want to test individual skills.


(Eox) #11

I don’t even know what to pick. More balanced match sounds cool and all, but I think most good players would love better team composition in the end. :confused:


(Begin2018) #12

Of course balance need to be at the beginning of the match. Another thing, when a team is imbalanced by 2 players, the guy with the lowest score in the bigger team should be auto-moved to the smaller team.

Now we need a poll to see if there is demands for min lvl 30 servers!


([ *O.C.B.* ] Wildcard) #13

@sdric said:
Thanks for posting this!
I really enjoyed our dialogue on reddit about it.

Obviously it will still be tough to balance leavers. For those scenarios the shuffle function should be kept in addition to pre-game shuffling. If there’s really too many leavers in a match and restocking gets to odd players will still have to intervene.

It’s never going to be perfect and that’s fine, but it server browser team balancing is horrific right now and just has to improve. Pre-turn shuffling might already go a long way.

As we know private servers for those who dislike it are on their way :slight_smile:

I’d agree with the keeping of the in-match shuffle vote if the shuffle system didn’t fall flat on its face and fail 99% of the time to begin with. Most players also don’t understand how frustrating it is when they spam shuffle vote on the 2nd half of a stopwatch game when you can no longer do a restart vote. It’s rude to do it at that point because honestly it just screws people over especially with how piss-poor the in-match shuffle system is.

I have to agree with others that these should honestly just become a thing of the past and go; you end up getting better results when people are willing to switch and do the process manually almost without fail anyways. Granted some people are kinda asshats and refuse to do this but that doesn’t change the fact that the system is already non-functional in its current state and the state of the community’s size. You also simply can’t expect balance to be inherent in a game mode whose main means of access is a system of drop-in / drop-out; it just doesn’t work and assuming otherwise would be a product of delusional thinking, completely devoid of any logic or reason.

I’m not saying it is wrong to want balance, do not misunderstand, but there’s a difference between the ideal and the reality; much like life it is a construct which is, by design, largely up to chance. In the end, as much as we want everyone to have an equal chance, there comes a time when it is healthier to accept the reality of it and learn to either cope or adapt our behaviors accordingly.

That aside I re-iterate the point I’ve made before; we need incoming players to be adequately introduced to certain core concepts of the gameplay, not just basic controls like we do now. Too many new players don’t have a clue in their head what to do outside run and shoot with the current system and it creates a situation that further magnifies the imbalance issues inherent in a drop-in / drop-out system. If focus should be anywhere aside from new content and bug fixes it should be in actually overhauling the eyesore of an introductory tutorial we have in-game right now; because as it stands it’s about as bare-bones as they come.

TL;DR - Unless everyone suddenly decides to just balance out the games of their own volition I wouldn’t advise expecting actual balance anytime within this games lifespan in pub games; as they are, by nature and design, unbalanced by default since it is a drop-in / drop-out system. The shuffle system has always failed to balance things well due to how large the gaps that exist in skill level are in this game and so 99% of the time it makes things worse and just screws everyone over further.

About the only thing I can think of that would, within reason, somewhat alleviate the issue a bit would be making sure the newcomers have as many tools to comprehend the aspects of this game as possible. The more they are actually taught about what the game entails before entering their first real match, the less frustrating it is for the veteran players; which would, in consequence, likely improve the general mood and lower the toxicity making them more amiable to helping the new players and showing them the ropes.


(B_Montiel) #14

WTF : It’s supposed to exist already ?

Teams are shuffled after the map selection, aren’t they ?
Or at least your communication for 3 years always implied it.
So this definitely needs some clarification.

The biggest issue with post match shuffle is the amount of leavers/newly connected players that will arrive between the end of the match and the beginning of the next one.

Yes, pre-match shuffle definitely limits team composition, but it will lock balance once and for all. This could lead to a proper removal of player cast shuffle votes.

In case of leavers during a game, unbalancing teams by numbers, just switch the player who will be the best compromise in terms of balance. Yes, I consider automatic autobalance (numbers only) mandatory more than shuffle vote which is badly used 95% of the time.


(K1X455) #15

If you can change the noob mentality of:

If on loosing team, call for shuffle; if on winning team vote NO on shuffle*

You would have solved 70% of the problem.


(TheStrangerous) #16

There’s the problem:

Leavers and Joiners mid-match…

Is “Joiners” a legit word?


(pumpkinmeerkat) #17

pre-shuffle with improved balance algorithm please.

@stayfreshshoe does SD still plan to fully support and develop for browser, CMM, and ranked modes for 1.0? Browser improvements are an exciting prospect but don’t direct more players where they are needed to improve balance and queue times.

I still think ranked AND browser should remained locked to new players up to a certain level. Browser should only be available to those players if they join on an eligible player already in the server. For new players in particular this would improve CMM experience (queue times, balance) and hopefully encourage them to continue to play the game and improve.

Excited to here about new (better) incentives for ranked play coming soon :smile:


(STARRYSOCK) #18

In casual, who cares about team composition honestly. It is supposed to be casual after all. Even if someone did try to plan their team, 90% of the time no one listens. And well, I almost never see anyone actually plan anything in the lobby of a casual match, it’s usually just random memes.

In ranked team composition matters, but in casual? Eh.


(Porkchopiya) #19

Hiding Players Level is the Solution. not the shuffle. Period!


(Xenithos) #20

@Eox said:
I don’t even know what to pick. More balanced match sounds cool and all, but I think most good players would love better team composition in the end. :confused:

The way I see it is that if people are picking mercs for Stopwatch in the first place they’ll have the core 3 mercs as usual. And those frequently change on a per map basis. Last time I checked no one leaves half way through the match to swap out Aura for Arty.

And if everyone does have the engie, medic and assault/fire-support or other combination team comp won’t matter because each team will be able to fill in the holes.