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Skill-based matchmaking a 'disservice' to gamers, according to former Bungie multiplayer lead

Max Hoberman has dismantled SBMM in a series of posts online.

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Skill-based matchmaking is one of the most controversial topics in modern gaming today. In theory, it makes sense to have players of a similar skill level, but in practise many players have grown dissatisfied with the overall multiplayer experience.

Former Bungie multiplayer lead Max Hoberman has gone into great detail on why skill-based matchmaking, or SBMM sucks, and has labelled it a 'disservice' to players. Responding to an opinion piece by GamesRadar, he argues its better to have variability.

"The failure of modern skill-based matchmaking, imho, is that it's designed to maximize these perfect match scenarios and minimize the others. When it's working, a majority of games become super tight, super stressful. That's not fun for most players. Where's the variability?"

He also spoke about how this method segregates high-level players. "Since the natural skill level distribution of players follows a bell curve, there are outliers: inherent low skill and high skill players. Characterizing the high skill ones as "sweaty teens hopped up on Monster Energy" is really disrespectful," he said. "Segregating high skill players from the population at large, forcing long wait times on them, is a form of discrimination. Designers should strive to find a way that players of all skill levels can have fun together."

What do you think of Hoberman's argument? You can read the full thread here.

Skill-based matchmaking a 'disservice' to gamers, according to former Bungie multiplayer lead


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