3 ways to fix HOTS

This is an opinion piece sent to us by community member ACTHEMAN.

I have to say before I begin with my rant that I love this game. I don’t think anyone but blizzard could pull this team focused brawler and make it work. They have creativity and they sometimes think outside of the box.

The biggest complaints that I see in this game revolve around things like “We had a troll AFK”, “we had a specialist solo camps and lanes, and they never joined team fights”, “we just had a rank X play Y and they sucked”. These are the things that matchmaking cannot predict against nor can it fix. It takes numbers and puts those numbers through rules to give both teams roughly a 50% chance of winning. But there are things that Heroes of the Storm doesn’t do that I believe it should do that could possibly fix many of these problems in most situations.

Adjust MMR score based on individual performance.

There is no doubt that this would be a long and complicated fix that would need to take into account many variables to even help solve the games problems. If the development team employs some very basic ideas it could possibly make matchmakers job SO much easier and many more game experiences more enjoyable by matching people better according to a more accurate MMR.

Both the way you play as part of a team and the individual skills of each player contribute to the result of the game. With the current MMR adjustment system your MMR number is adjusted based solely on a win or a loss and the difference between the teams MMRs. If your team wins you gain points and if your teams lost then you lose points. This game mechanic conflicts with game mechanic of the MMR number which is supposed to represent your individual skill. This is why each person needs to have their MMR score adjusted according to the win or loss and influenced by individual performance.

Consider this situation of a random group of games in which you are matched with people that have roughly similar MMRs. If you are a good player that loses more than half your games because your team or certain team members performed poorly then you would not lose as many points as the poor performers and when you do win your exceptional performance would give a more points to push you up the ladder much quicker than in the current system. It would be the same for poor players who are carried by good teams. They would win fewer points when under performing and loose more points in a loss. This wold push people up and down ranks quicker and give a better reflection of skill in MMR.

Have Separate MMRs according to roles/Heroes

Some players have played their way to higher ranks on the back of playing a single character or class. At middle to lower ranks this isn’t as much of an issue but at higher ranks having someone who climbed to rank 1 on the assassin class who then drags a game down by playing a bad tank of healer just makes the game a negative experience. Ever had a game where someone plays a bad healer and then next game when u queued against them they play a brilliant Jaina?

I know this would require a huge amount of resources across multiple game types and is probably impossible to implement in hero league.  The problem is that each role has a very different play style and therefore each player has different skill levels for each class.

Maybe a compromise could be reached and have an MMRs for each role type. You could redefine the heroes into more roles according to play style. Each of these roles would have a unique play style and players should be recognised for their skills at each.

  • Tanks, The front line protectors
  • Ranged Assassins, the ranged attackers (mages included)
  • Melee Assassin, short range fighters with more health than ranged
  • Support – healers and damage mitigation
  • Specialist – Utility players and heroes that are very unique

Change of the Games modes

Many people would say that this would be something that could not be done because the player base is too small. Making more game types would further dilute a small player pool (especially in a small region like ANZ). Once again I think a compromise in the short term while the player base rebuilds would immensely help and when the player base is up at healthier levels start to divide into more game types. I believe the game should be split up into the following modes with different game types that could somehow share queues if implemented properly.

VS AI could be changed to cater to the casual players who are not interested in the stress of competing against human opponents and possible negative feedback from trolls. Maybe this mode needs to be limited as it isn’t truly in the spirit of what the game is meant to be as a 5V5 team brawler.

Unranked mode should be divided into two game types, quick match and unranked draft mode. I believe both have a place to play in the current state of the game but may not always be needed as the game matures. Unranked mode should be a place where rank is not referenced but is used to control the quality of the games. Just like in the current quick match you should be able to solo queue or even stack up to a group of five.

  • Quick Match is a much needed mode where we can just pick a hero and join a game. It is also a needed place for teams of up to five to try different compositions to see how they work on different maps.

 

  • Unranked draft (This has just come into the game with the Medivh patch and is a VERY welcome addition). Unranked draft mode should be a training/practice for hero and team league. It should have the relaxed atmosphere where people can learn to draft and play better in the team environment as a solo queue or as a player in a team of up to five.

 

Ranked Mode should be the pinnacle of the game where the competition is fierce and the committed players compete for glory and rewards. This is where rank should be a bragging factor and should be there for the world to see in some form.

  • Hero League This should be the pinnacle of solo play. Duo queueing could be removed in an environment where people aren’t afraid to solo queue because matchmaking works and ranking is based on both individual skill and team play skill. The solo league environment would need team communication through voice chat or a much better ping system and no muting yourself from team chat or voice comms. The game should also not be manipulated by skilled players carrying lesser skilled players. The end of each season should be rewarded well and highly skilled players should be recognised.

 

  • Team league is really slow currently. It’s difficult to find 5 players who want to play this mode. Maybe some changes could allow 2, 3 or 5 stacks come into the league for now which would increase the player base but the mode would need team communication through voice chat or a much better ping system and no muting yourself from team chat or voice comms.

 

Agree with ACTHEMAN or do you have you own thoughts? Let us know in the comments below!

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  • Nuyomi/Pocky

    Adjust MMR score based on individual performance:
    This doesn’t work because there are too many outliers that can be used to show individual performance. In perspective, if you are losing a game, generally people who are trying to win will still attempt to make plays even if it costs them multiple deaths in order to come back. If suddenly individual performance is used to calculate MMR then people will be less inclined to make plays and just accept the loss whilst maintaining individual performance. People like Xplicit who split push and push objectives for deaths would also get punished for this even though they do this with the intent of winning the game.

    Have Separate MMRs according to roles/Heroes:
    This is never going to work. Just think about it.

    Change of the Games modes:
    For the hero league solo change, the new rank system aims to ensure that skilled players aren’t able to carry unskilled players and is shown through the rank restriction for duos which was not previously restricted.

    IMHO these honestly don’t do anything to even slightly fix hots but instead would probably kill the game even more.