Weekly Debrief

DICE, please take a look at the stats for game starts. Bad balancing is ruining many games

disposalist
8670 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, BF1IncursionsAlpha Member
edited May 2017
Sorry, I think it's a bit off to call "DICE" in the subject, but I feel it's important... It's nothing new and it's not been looked at or even mentioned re. BF1 to my knowledge. I'm a bit of a fanboi most of the time, but this is a really fundamental issue that seems to be being ignored (?). I'd be happy to be informed otherwise.

I often see something like this: -

Teams 12 to 20. Game counter T - 1:00.
Teams 16 to 24. Game counter T - 0:30.
Teams 18 to 26. Game starts anyway.
Teams 18 to 26. Game at 0:20. First contact at middle flag. Score at 2 to 6.
Teams 22 to 26. Game at 0:30. Middle flag fight. Score at 4 to 10.
Teams 25 to 27. Game at 0:40. Middle flag taken. Scores at 10 to 25.
...Someone switches to the bigger, winning team...
Teams 26 to 28. Game at 0:50. Middle flag held. Scores at 25 to 50.
Teams 27 to 29. Game at 1:00. Middle flag well held. Scores at 30 to 75.
...Someone switches to the bigger, winning team...
Teams at 26 to 30. Game at 1:10. Middle flag dominated. Scores at 35 to 90.
...People loaded into the bigger winning side...
Teams at 26 to 32. Game at 1:20. Middle flag occupiers push on. Scores at 45 to 100.
...Some people leave the losing side...
Teams at 24 to 32. Game at 1:30. Scores at 50 to 125.
...The rest of the game is a land-slide with a sequence of people loading into the losing side, having a bad time and leaving...

So the above is a made up example, but we all know it happens regularly. One and a half minutes in and it's effectively over. If you stay, it's miserable, if you leave you feel guilty for making it worse (well, I do).

I see some really big problems, but that can surely be fixed: -

Problem 1: Assigning players to a team when they haven't loaded
I'm being optimistic assuming that the game is starting badly uneven because the game thinks there are the same number in each team, but some are still loading. The problem with that assumption is twofold: 1) Loading times vary wildly and also some that are loading cancel or crash or whatever 2) People don't *know* players are loading and think it's badly balanced and leave/switch making things worse.
Fix 1a: Assign players to teams as they *finish* loading not when they start loading
Surely players can be assigned to teams such that they stay even?
Fix 1b: Don't keep random squads together
Sometimes the imbalance is because everyone is in big squads. To switch 5 players only evens things if the teams are different by 10. A very blunt tool. If it's not a platoon or party based squad, split them up. Balance is *way* more important than keeping random squads together. Perhaps allow randoms that fall in love and lock the squad to stay together. Most people don't care.

Problem 2: Switching to bigger/winning teams is allowed (WTF?!)
Fix 2: Don't allow it! Why is it allowed?!
I *do not* understand this. It's just *terrible* for balance and should not be allowed under any circumstance. If people want to play with someone they switch to the smaller/losing team or wait until they can be shuffled together in a new game. Balance is *much* more important than letting late-coming party/platoon members to join up a few minutes quicker.
Players should only ever be allowed to switch to the losing/smaller team (not even even teams). You can currently switch to a team that has 2 more players already!... *boggle*

Problem 3: No balancing on players leaving
Fix 3a: Auto-balance when players leave.
Yes, auto-balancing can be rough, but IMHO better than an unbalanced game. Any decent player will appreciate that losing a good game is better than winning a badly balanced one and when games are better balanced less people will leave in the middle anyway.
Fix 3b: Incentive switching:
If not auto-balancing then some kind of incentive/switching system should be added: "The other team is losing players! Press SPACE to switch and gain 2XP!"

Balancing is surely the most important and fundamental issue. No matter the game mode or the new weapon or vehicle or mechanic, if the game you play isn't even it's no fun, not for either side. I know it seems *some* people love to smash the enemy into the ground - no end of people typing "gg!" when it was totally one-sided, boring and awful - but those people aside, most would greatly prefer a balanced and challenging experience.

So, please DICE, have a look at your stats and see what happens with these games. I'm pretty confident if you analyse match starts, progress and outcomes you can see it needs attention.

Maybe it's really really difficult to address? It's really really important though.

Comments

  • MachoFantast1c0
    2039 postsMember, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, BF1IncursionsAlpha, Battlefield V Member
    I'm fully on board with this line of thinking.
  • DavTan
    771 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, Battlefield V Member
    I agree with you, balancing sucks.
    But " bit of a fanboi "... I can't agree with that.
  • Dannz47
    47 postsMember, Battlefield, Battlefield 1 Member
    im aboard together with you. +1
  • olavafar
    1983 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, BF1IncursionsAlpha, Battlefield V Member
    These type of constructive posts are too rare. I hope it gets noticed.

    Comment:
    Problem 3 is hard to solve. Some players are very sensitive to being switched to losing side (not me, I often actively change when I'm alone), These will probably leave if switched unless a quit will be counted as a loss, which I'm not sure is a good thing. It has the potantial of killing a server quickly. I've experienced it when we had servers in BF4, if we moved anyone but a clan member (sometimes ther were to few of those) they got very upset. 3b might be the way to go though and its the best alternative I've seen sofar. Maybe ther shall be a 'game breaker' ribbon for the ones switching to losing team,and this team wins in the end, eventually leading to a 'game breaker' medal. You'd fool me for sure...
  • disposalist
    8670 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, BF1IncursionsAlpha Member
    I'm feeling the love, thanks. I did think I should post in Bugs and Issues, but I really would like to get a feel for 'public opinion' on this. I also would really like DICE to comment, so it may need a few hundred pages hehe
  • disposalist
    8670 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, BF1IncursionsAlpha Member
    These type of constructive posts are too rare. I hope it gets noticed.

    Comment:
    Problem 3 is hard to solve. Some players are very sensitive to being switched to losing side (not me, I often actively change when I'm alone), These will probably leave if switched unless a quit will be counted as a loss, which I'm not sure is a good thing. It has the potantial of killing a server quickly. I've experienced it when we had servers in BF4, if we moved anyone but a clan member (sometimes ther were to few of those) they got very upset. 3b might be the way to go though and its the best alternative I've seen sofar. Maybe ther shall be a 'game breaker' ribbon for the ones switching to losing team,and this team wins in the end, eventually leading to a 'game breaker' medal. You'd fool me for sure...
    Yeah, ribbons and whatnot would be a cool incentive. There really could and should be more emphasis on playing for the fun of the game as opposed to playing just to win. A balanced challenging game should be prized over an unbalanced boring game. Let's incentivise.
  • bleachee
    969 postsMember, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1 Member
    Fully agreed. I think this is the biggest problem in the game right now, and if it were corrected, the game would really shine. Team switching should be eliminated. Any benefit conferred by team switching is far outweighed by the problems it causes. And I agree that matches should not start with such a wide numerical gap between teams. I've seen plenty of games where the match starts with one team down by 5-6 players and that team never recovers from being shorthanded.
    I do not support autobalancing mid-game though. That would certainly cause a huge outcry from players. Preventing leaving is a tough problem for sure. Maybe it could be that if you leave a certain number of games in a certain time frame, you are charged with "desertion" and you are demoted one rank.
  • Bossman1794
    1073 postsMember, Battlefield 4, Battlefield Hardline, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, Battlefield V Member
    Sure, I would welcome attempts to make the teams as fair and balanced as possible. Even games are fairly rare and don't happen all that often but they are an absolute treat when they do happen. Most of the games I play either we stomp or we get stomped regardless of the mode.

    The only thing I'm unsure of in your post OP, is autobalancing in the middle of a game. Yeah, some people might "appreciate" attempts to make it as fair as possible but being honest, I'd be pretty annoyed if I randomly get switched team as I'm playing. It just screws up the flow of a match IMO.

    As for switching teams? Yes it is annoying and I am also guilty of doing it sometimes. If I'm playing on a team that makes absolutely no effort whatsoever to revive/resupply/heal or is filled with ~30-40% snipers I switch instantly or failing that I leave. Doesn't matter if we're winning or losing I just find that too aggravating to deal with.
    I would welcome a solution to teamswitching that ensures that people who want to play together aren't prevented from doing so.
  • FluMusiic
    224 postsMember, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE Member
    I'm definitely not for getting switched to the losing team to auto balance. I would quit the match and get bitter if after all the work I did, I got put on the team with lesser skill and ended up losing to the team I had previously been dominating with. Another issue with that is, at some point, friends/squads would be getting split up, only to be playing against each other and then have a hell of a time getting back on the same team the following match. It's a bad idea, there are other ways to balance matches better. I am, however, for getting rid of team switching all together (unless the game recognizes you have someone on your friends list on the other team).
  • OrionPherrit
    448 postsMember, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, Battlefield V Member
    How does skill matching really work? I was getting slaughtered by lvl 70 to 90 players while I was still a teenager. Are you sure the system is not really random, despite EA/Dice's claims to the contrary? This was & still is a perennial issue in Battlefront.
  • Ameeba37
    1753 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield Hardline, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, Battlefield V Member
    edited May 2017
    DICE should fix the quit button so that people would quit after a round instead of in the beginning of a round.
  • l_water_l
    1545 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, Battlefield V Member
    The only stats they need to look at are all the players on battlefield traker with a 70-80% headshot rate with LMG's.
  • disposalist
    8670 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, BF1IncursionsAlpha Member
    How does skill matching really work? I was getting slaughtered by lvl 70 to 90 players while I was still a teenager. Are you sure the system is not really random, despite EA/Dice's claims to the contrary? This was & still is a perennial issue in Battlefront.
    Skill matching is an additional issue (that, yes, needs attention). I'm really only talking about the number of people in the team, which you'd think would be relatively simple.
  • disposalist
    8670 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, CTE, BF1IncursionsAlpha Member
    Ameeba37 wrote: »
    DICE should fix the quit button so that people would quit after a round instead of in the beginning of a round.
    The Quit button does work properly now - sometimes takes longer than others, but it works. Maybe there's still a problem that people are in the habit of waiting until the next round to quit, though.
  • velliejohn
    135 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1 Member
    edited May 2017
    bleachee wrote: »
    Fully agreed. I think this is the biggest problem in the game right now, and if it were corrected, the game would really shine. Team switching should be eliminated. Any benefit conferred by team switching is far outweighed by the problems it causes. And I agree that matches should not start with such a wide numerical gap between teams. I've seen plenty of games where the match starts with one team down by 5-6 players and that team never recovers from being shorthanded.
    I do not support autobalancing mid-game though. That would certainly cause a huge outcry from players. Preventing leaving is a tough problem for sure. Maybe it could be that if you leave a certain number of games in a certain time frame, you are charged with "desertion" and you are demoted one rank.

    What if i want to play as an attacker for operations? I don't like playing as defenders. I normally switch into an attacker if i get forced as a defender. Is that a bad thing?
  • bearpatroI
    590 postsMember, Battlefield, Battlefield 1 Member
    It's because players on the losing side quit from the previous match. You always see at the start of the round one team having 10 or more players. Yeah it will eventually even out but at the start it means the team with the larger player pool will probably cap the middle flags. Which will rarely switch hands afterwards. If you see at the start of the game a lopsided team like 18 vs 30, it might be better just to quit yourself and join a different server. Because those starts usually lead to blow out rounds and being spawn camped within the first 5 minutes.
  • DavTan
    771 postsMember, Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1, Battlefield V Member
    Ameeba37 wrote: »
    DICE should fix the quit button so that people would quit after a round instead of in the beginning of a round.
    The Quit button does work properly now - sometimes takes longer than others, but it works. Maybe there's still a problem that people are in the habit of waiting until the next round to quit, though.

    And that is exacerbated by the new vote map option when people realise they don't want to play the map that was just voted for.
  • bleachee
    969 postsMember, Battlefield 4, Battlefield, Battlefield 1 Member
    velliejohn wrote: »
    bleachee wrote: »
    Fully agreed. I think this is the biggest problem in the game right now, and if it were corrected, the game would really shine. Team switching should be eliminated. Any benefit conferred by team switching is far outweighed by the problems it causes. And I agree that matches should not start with such a wide numerical gap between teams. I've seen plenty of games where the match starts with one team down by 5-6 players and that team never recovers from being shorthanded.
    I do not support autobalancing mid-game though. That would certainly cause a huge outcry from players. Preventing leaving is a tough problem for sure. Maybe it could be that if you leave a certain number of games in a certain time frame, you are charged with "desertion" and you are demoted one rank.

    What if i want to play as an attacker for operations? I don't like playing as defenders. I normally switch into an attacker if i get forced as a defender. Is that a bad thing?

    Switching before the game starts would be fine. Switching after the game starts should never happen. And the game shouldn't start until the teams are numerically even, i.e., a difference of one at the most.
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