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Patch Notes – S7 Heroic Challenges enabled (Feb.13.2020)

Dear Adventurers,

Welcome to the latest official patch notes for Ring of Elysium. Here are the full details:


Heroic Challenges
  • Enabled the Season 7 Heroic Challenges, available for Adventurer Pass owners that have reached Tier 100
  • Complete the Heroic Challenges for exclusive rewards such as portrait, accessory, and Adventurer Character Styles!


Thanks for playing,
ROE DEV Team

Patch Notes – Character Styles and Lucky Draw (Feb.5.2020)

Dear Adventurers,
 
Welcome to the latest official patch notes for Ring of Elysium. Here are the full details:

Adventurer Characters
  • Enabled Anubis – Judgement of death, Judgement of death Style A, and Judgement of death Style B

Lucky Draw
  • Lucky Draw is back and updated with new rewards! With an epic prize pool including a rare M82A1 weapon skin, a set of traversal equipment appearances, a vehicle appearance for the Mini-SUV, an accessory, and more!
  • Event Period: Feb 6th – March 4th, 2020 (Pacific Time)
  • Event rules:
    • Players can find the Lucky Draw interface by visiting the “Event Center” in the lobby
    • This event is divided into four 7-day stages, players can draw 5 times during each stage and each draw costs 50 E-Points
    • Players are guaranteed to get one item from the prize pool per draw, and items already drawn will not be repeatedly

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed a bug that caused server issues

Thanks for playing,
ROE DEV Team

Patch Notes – Gameplay, Settings and Bug Fixes (Jan.21.2020)

Dear Adventurers,

Welcome to the latest official patch notes for Ring of Elysium. Here are the full details:

Gameplay
  • P90 can now appear in High-tier Loot Areas

Adventurer Characters
  • Enabled Malus – Special Force Style A, Special Force Style B
  • Enabled Elena – Thorn of Rose, Thorn of Rose Style A, Thorn of Rose Style B

Settings
  • Mouse sensitivity and audio related settings can now be stored on the server side
  • “Vehicle Modification” keybind setting has been moved to the bottom of the “Combat” list, and renamed to “Use Vehicle Mod Kit”

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed an issue where there’s no loot in Campbell Shooting Range in Bombarded mode
  • Fixed an issue where grenade and RPG explosives were unable to move airdrops (this only happened occasionally)

Thanks for playing,
ROE DEV Team

Patch Notes – Quantum Strike Supply Box and Bug Fixes (Jan.16.2020)

Dear Adventurers,

Welcome to the latest official patch notes for Ring of Elysium. Here are the full details:

Weapon Skins
  • Introducing the Weapon Skin Supply Box drop- the Quantum Strike Supply Box! Open it and you’ll have a chance at getting the 18 brand-new skins, including Groza and Vector epic skin- “Quantum Strike”, “Ancient Civilization”, “Wartech”, “Guardian”, and more!

  • Players can visit the “Store – Weapon Skin” interface in the game lobby, select and open the Quantum Strike Supply Box to obtain one random weapon skin in the supply box’s prize pool
  • After selecting the supply box, you can also click “Preview Rewards and Rules” in the upper left corner of the interface to preview the reward pool of the corresponding supply box and its detailed rules
  • The cost of opening each Supply Box is 100 E-points
  • Adventurers cannot receive duplicate rewards from Supply Boxes and will receive tokens for any reward they already own. (Uncommon- 1 Token, Rare- 5 Tokens, Epic- 20 Tokens)
  • Added 3 weapon skins to the Token Shop
    • MK12 – Covert Tactics
    • Citori – Covert Tactics
    • Scorpion – Covert Tactics

Adventurer Characters
  • Enabled Malus – Special Force Character Styles

Store
  • Added three new vehicle appearances in Store, each priced at 500 E-Points:
    • SUV – Ancient Civilization
    • Armored Truck – Riot Police
    • Pickup Truck – Guardian
  • Added three Epic weapon skins in the Token Shop, each priced at 200 Tokens:
    • MK12 – Covert Tactics
    • Scorpion – Covert Tactics
    • Citori – Covert Tactics
  • Added the Anubis Accessory Mystery Box, each box open will yield a random Anubis accessory, the Mystery Box contains a total of 5 different accessory variations, gotta collect them all!

Performance
  • Optimized the issue of unstable FPS performance under the helicopter

Privacy Policy
  • Updated the Privacy Policy to comply with the new Californian law

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed several incorrect collisions and textures on the map
  • Fixed an issue where swimming sound effects continued to play after switching to another player when spectating
  • Fixed an issue where players occasionally couldn’t switch weapon firing modes
  • Fixed an issue where Vector’s bolt was static
  • Fixed an issue where players can occasionally get stuck in certain narrow areas
  • Removed some incorrect object models on Mt. Dione

Thanks for playing,
ROE DEV Team

Patch Notes – Gameplay Changes and Bug Fixes (Jan.9.2020)

Dear Adventurers,

Welcome to the latest official patch notes for Ring of Elysium. Here are the full details:

Adventurer Characters
  • Enabled Adventurer Character- Anubis, Child of Setekh Style A, and Child of Setekh Style B

Gameplay
  • Slightly reduced the maximum range for the Biosignal Detector
  • Added a guaranteed boat spawn point at Drilling Platform and Tidal Power Station
  • Changed the time to automatically switch to the next spectating target to 2 seconds after the previous spectating target was eliminated to improve the spectating experience

DX12
  • The DX12 client now supports the following GPUs:
    • NVIDIA GeForce GT 1030
    • NVIDIA GeForce 940M
    • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750
    • NVIDIA GeForce GT 740
  • DX12 client’s automatic selection of graphic options based on hardware configuration is now more accurate

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed several incorrect collisions and textures on the map
  • Fixed several incorrect loot points in Campbell Shooting Range
  • Fixed an issue where certain places in Campbell Shooting Range occasionally became too bright or too dark
  • Fixed an issue where leaving ADS caused black dots to show on the screen occasionally
  • Fixed an issue where Elena’s hair became pink for a split second after using the Stealth Cloak
  • Fixed an issue where repairing vehicles could reset the cooldown of Invisibility and Radar Battlecar devices

Thanks for playing,
ROE DEV Team

Developer Insights- New Maps Are Coming

Happy new year, Adventurers! 2019 was a great year for Ring of Elysium, and we would like to thank you for joining us on this incredible journey. As always, we’ve been continuously collecting feedback from the community and listening to your thoughts on a daily basis. In today’s Developer Insights post, we want to start the year off right by addressing the hottest topic in our communities- maps.

Yes, there is a new map coming to ROE, and you can expect more than one in the future. The development of the upcoming map started a while ago, we didn’t want to reveal it too early since building a new map from scratch is a big commitment and an immense amount of development effort; we are not going to make another Mt. Dione or Europa Island with a different look, but rather we want to create a map that addresses the issues of previous maps. We know waiting sucks, and we greatly appreciate your patience, understanding and goodwill.

Before we talk about the new map, let’s rewind a bit and breakdown some of the characteristics of Europa Island:
  • Pacing:
    • When we first designed Europa Island, we wanted to give players the ability to move around a vast, open landscape to provide a truly immersive experience. We wanted you to feel like you’re playing in an open-world game with a variety of different things to do. This ended up making Europa Island a massive map. As we continued to add more POIs to the map, the playable area became even bigger, which is a lot of space for 60 players to play with, creating quite a bit of downtime between safe zones and in early-game. Since we do not have the convergence effect of the dropship spawn-mechanism, players are more likely to be scattered across the various POIs on the map (except the hot-droppers) with our spawn system.
  • Traversing:
    • Our intention was to provide players with tons of freedom and possibilities with how they traverse around the map- spots to glide from, open areas to bike across, endless angles to grapple, and water areas to explore. This helped to make each game’s experience completely unique. Players might find themselves trying out all the slopes for BMX stunts in the first game, and then driving a speedboat through the tumbling sea under extreme weather in the next one. Speaking of the sea, we later introduced underwater combat with the DPV, expanding our tactical options and adding another way to traverse the waters. However, even though the traversing experience around waters feels special in ROE, it can sometimes be a struggle and slow down the pacing of the game.
  • Line of Sight:
    • We envisioned Europa Island to be realistic and immersive. We put much effort into detailing a vegetation filled, lush environment which established the identity of our island. This caused the line of sight to be obstructed at times, leading to less mid to long range encounters which was a lot more common on Mt. Dione. As you can see from the statistics below, the chance of bullets hitting a target over 100 meters is lower on Europa Island compared to Mt. Dione.
  • Art Style:
    • Artistic direction is absolutely crucial when it comes to defining the identity and flavor of the map. Europa’s original concept was this beautiful, verdant island that is lively yet dangerous with the erupting volcano. So we decided to go with a more bright and saturated color palette, which works well conveying that concept.

With the new map on the horizon, we want to take this opportunity to make some fundamental adjustments, bringing a refreshing experience while keeping the core that makes the game unique and fun:
  • Open LOS
    • Gunplay will continue to be a major focus. We want to incentivize players to initiate engagements in all kinds of distances and situations instead of hindering their options with obstructions. This means that the new map will feature a much more open line of sight, with fewer influencing factors like vegetation.
  • A Faster Pace
    • There’s a mixture of downtime and lack of encounters on Europa mainly due to its large size, water coverage, off-road terrains, and lush vegetation. This time, we want to make things faster and more action-packed on top of feeling engaging and rewarding. In order to achieve that, we will take all four issues above into consideration when we design the most appropriate theme and location for the new map.
  • New Art Style
    • We’re shifting the art style of the new map to a more serious and realistic approach. As you may have already seen, the latest POI introduced to Europa this season, the Campbell Shooting Range, has a very different look and feel. We were thrilled to see the feedback on this new approach has been extremely positive in the community. Let’s just say that Campbell is just a tease of what’s to come.
  • Other Thoughts
    • Other than the points above, we have also been reviewing various other aspects of the design. For instance, we realized that Europa was slow-paced partially due to the nature of our safe zone system. While this “shaped safe zone” has been a staple to the game, it is not as progressive and does not provide a constant pressure that forces players to converge effectively.

Moving Forward

With the new map coming up, let’s talk about where Europa Island and Mt. Dione fit in. These two maps have captured our audience in different ways, and we want to figure out the best system to incorporate them into the game. There is no perfect solution here, but we want to be upfront and transparent with you, and we are constantly trying to figure out what works best:

Since ROE is a Battle Royale, each game round eats up a lot of players. It’s incredibly difficult for us(or any other BR out there) to support a healthy matchmaking experience by making all maps playable via selection. We also feel that random map matchmaking is not a good strategy because players may leave the game until they matchmake into the map they like, leaving the lobbies half empty. And a daily/hourly map rotation will only divide the community in a really negative way. So as of now, we think adding Europa Island into the current LTM rotation and opening up the available hours would be the best approach. However, as previously stated, we will continue to monitor all feedback from our communities, and we want to hear what you have to say about this topic to help us make a clear, concise decision.

One More Thing…

As mentioned above, there will be more than one new map coming to the game in the future, so while it’s still early, get your creative juices flowing and let us know your best map concepts, it might actually become the 4th map of Ring of Elysium!

Final Thoughts

We are incredibly excited about the direction we’re headed and hope you all are as well! We also can’t wait to to reveal more details about this new map in the very near future with you. Make sure to keep an eye out on our official platforms for more teasers and information coming soon, see you next time.

Thanks,
ROE Dev Team

Ranked Roles Update

Today’s update features a change to the rank system that replaces the Core/Support separation with a single rank that uses handicaps for each of the five ranked roles, representing your relative strength playing each position. This change will help the matchmaker better account for a player’s different performance levels between various roles. Winning or losing games will modify your single rank.

When queuing for your best role(s), the matchmaker will consider your full MMR. Queuing for your weaker role(s), however, will result in the matchmaker placing you into a match at a lower MMR.

When you match into a game, it will display the adjusted badge levels that were used to match each player. Regardless of which role you queue for and play, the results of the match will affect your actual MMR value.

Your initial levels for each role are calculated based on your previous Core/Support MMR values and analysis of your past 100 games. You can track your current role adjustments in the Role Queue menu.

Introducing Regional Leagues

Starting after TI10, the Dota Pro Circuit will introduce a new system that presents competitive Dota in a more scheduled and consistent way during the year and features a better structure for the development of Tier 2 and Tier 3 teams.

The year will be divided in 3 seasons. Each season will be composed of 6 regional leagues, leading into a Major with the best teams in the world. The Dota year will conclude, as usual, with The International.

Regional Leagues:

Each of the six leagues will feature a prize pool of USD 280,000 per season. Leagues will feature two divisions with 8 teams in the Upper Division and 8 in the Lower division, for a total of 96 teams participating across the world. After each season, the 2 bottom teams of the Upper Division will swap places with the top 2 of the Lower Division. The bottom 2 teams of the Lower Division will be eliminated from the league and replaced with 2 new teams coming from Open Qualifiers to allow for new teams and talent to be introduced into the scene over time.

We believe the consistency and regularity of the league throughout the year, paired with a flat and deep prize pool distribution will, over time, nurture healthy and strong Tier 2/3 competition.

The leagues will have a duration of six weeks, and each region will consist of a full Bo3 Round Robin among all teams. In order to make it easier to follow your favorite region and teams, all matches will be in consistent date and time slots throughout the year for each region.

All Upper Division matches will be presented from studio broadcasts. All Lower Division matches will be featured on DotaTV.

Each region will have 3 competition days a week, schedule will be as follows, All times in PST. Each slot represents a Best of 3 series:

Schedule:

Upper Division
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
3AM China SEA SEA China SEA China
6AM China SEA CIS CIS SEA China
9AM Europe Europe CIS CIS Europe CIS
12PM Europe Europe
3PM SA NA SA SA NA
6PM NA SA NA SA NA
9PM
Lower Division
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
3AM China China SEA
6AM SEA SEA China China SEA China SEA
9AM CIS CIS CIS CIS CIS
12PM Europe Europe Europe Europe Europe
3PM SA SA SA  SA NA
6PM NA SA NA NA NA
9PM

For the inaugural season, Valve will allocate the initial teams to the Upper and Lower divisions. Teams will also have to declare the region they choose to participate in (and be eligible for that region) before the season starts. Remaining slots will be filled through qualifiers after The International 2020 concludes.

Prize Distribution:

Upper Division
1st Place USD 30,000 500 DPC points Qualifies to the Major Playoffs
2nd Place USD 28,000 300 DPC points Qualifies to the Major Group Stage
3rd Place USD 27,000 200 DPC points Qualifies to the Major Wild Card Stage1
4th Place USD 26,000 100 DPC points Qualifies to the Major Wild Card Stage2
5th Place USD 25,000 50 DPC points
6th Place USD 24,000
7th Place USD 23,000 Relegated to Lower Division
8th Place USD 22,000 Relegated to Lower Division
Lower Division
1st Place USD 17,000 Promoted to Upper Division
2nd Place USD 16,000 Promoted to Upper Division
3rd Place USD 15,000
4th Place USD 11,000
5th Place USD 9,000
6th Place USD 7,000
7th Place Eliminated from Lower Division3
8th Place Eliminated from Lower Division3
1Only EU, CN, SEA and NA
2Only EU and CN
3Replaced by an Open Qualifiers Team

For a team to be eligible to participate in a region, 3 or more of the players need to reside in the area they are competing in. Additionally, teams will be able to use a stand-in for up to 4 of their matches as long as that stand-in is either competing in a lower division or not competing in a league at all.

If a team decides to change regions, they will have to enter the region through open qualifiers and climb through that region’s Lower Division.

For the duration of each season, from the beginning of the league until the end of the Major, all rosters will be locked. After the Major concludes and until the beginning of the next season, roster changes will be possible. Each player change will incur a 15% penalty on current points for that team.

Majors

The season will conclude with a Major tournament featuring 18 teams from all regions and sporting a prize pool of USD 500,000 plus DPC points.

The 18 participating teams are the top spots from each regional Upper Division. Regions will have a fixed amounts of slots throughout the year:

Europe and China: 4 slots.
North America and Southeast Asia: 3 slots.
CIS and South America: 2 slots.

Majors Format

Wildcard:
Format: 6 teams Bo2 round robin. Top two teams advance to the Group Stage. Four teams get eliminated.

EU League 3rd place.
EU League 4th place
CN League 3rd place
CN League 4th place
NA League 3rd place
SEA League 3rd place.

Group Stage:
Format: 8 teams Bo2 round robin. Top two teams advance to the Playoffs upper bracket. 3rd to 6th place advance to Playoffs lower bracket. Two teams get eliminated.

EU League 2nd place
CN League 2nd Place
NA League 2nd Place
SA League 2nd Place
CIS League 2nd Place
SEA League 2nd Place
1st Wildcard
2nd Wildcard

Playoffs:
Format: 12 teams Double Elimination.

Upper Bracket:
EU League 1st place
CN League 1st place
SEA League 1st place
SA League 1st place
NA League 1st place
CIS League 1st place
Group Stage – 1st place
Group Stage – 2nd place

Lower Bracket:
Group Stage – 3rd place
Group Stage – 4th place
Group Stage – 5th place
Group Stage – 6th place

Prize Distribution:

1st Place USD 200,000 500 DPC points
2nd Place USD 100,000 450 DPC points
3rd Place USD 75,000 400 DPC points
4th Place USD 50,000 350 DPC points
5th Place USD 25,000 300 DPC points
6th Place USD 25,000 300 DPC points
7th Place USD 12,500 200 DPC points
8th Place USD 12,500 200 DPC points

At the end of the third season, the top 12 teams with the most DPC points will qualify for The International 2021. The remaining spots will be decided through six regional final chance qualifiers, each with the 8 best teams from each region that haven’t been invited to TI. There won’t be open qualifiers to TI.

Dates

The dates for each season are as follows:

S1 Fall League: Oct 5th – Nov 15th
S1 Major: Dec 11th – Dec 20th
S2 Winter League: Jan 4th – Feb 14th
S2 Major: Mar 12th – Mar 21st
S3 Spring League: Apr 12th – May 23rd
S3 Major: June 25th – July 4th

Dates outside of this range will be available for third party tournaments.

New Bloom Treasure

Just in time for Lunar New Year and the Rat’s time in the cyclical place of honor, the Treasure of Unbound Majesty is now available.

Packed full of sets for Drow Ranger, Visage, Undying, Storm Spirit, Dazzle, Kunkka, Arc Warden, Dark Willow, and Rubick, this treasure also includes the chance to unbox a rare Puck set, very rare Legion Commander set, or an extremely rare Templar Assassin set.

Available for $2.49 in the Dota 2 store, you can claim one of these treasures as a gift for completing the New Bloom rewards line—which also unlocks this year’s seasonal New Bloom Celebrations and giftable spins on the rewards wheel.

True Sight — The International 2019

Join the pros who battled in The International Grand Finals — World Champions OG and runners-up Team Liquid (now the newly-dubbed Nigma) — alongside a live theater audience in Berlin, Germany on January 28th for the world premiere of True Sight: The International 2019.

OG made history in Shanghai last August by successfully defending their hold on the Aegis of Champions, becoming not only the first team to win The International in back-to-back years, but the first ever to carve their names into the Aegis for a second time.

Now, fans from around the globe can tune in live on Tuesday, January 28th at 7:00 p.m. CET to see exactly how the story unfolded as the teams themselves relive the epic journey at the world premiere event — hosted by Grand Finals casters ODPixel and Fogged, and joined by The International broadcast stalwarts Kaci and Slacks.

Tickets for the live event go on sale January 6th at 9:00 p.m. CET.

Details:

True Sight: The International 2019 Grand Finals
Live World Premiere

When: January 28th, 2020, 7:00 p.m. CET
Where: Babylon Theatre
Rosa-Luxemburg-Straße 30, 10178
Berlin, Germany
Tickets: Available for €10 EUR from January 6th at 9:00 p.m. CET

Tune in from home: Live on Steam and Twitch, and available later on the Dota 2 Youtube channel.

Ogre Magi Arcana & Frostivus Reward Line

In today’s update, two heads are better than one, and three heads are better than that, as the all-new Flockheart’s Gamble Arcana item for Ogre Magi makes its grand debut.

Featuring all-new custom animations and effects—including a new Firelark mount, Multicast streak counter, enhanced ability effects, and more—the Flockheart’s Gamble Arcana ushers in a new era of Ogre supremacy and bestows even more blessings from the Goddess of Luck. With three heads available to plan cunning new battle tactics, Ogre Magi might just be the most advanced hero Dota has ever seen.

Not content to arrive without fanfare, Flockheart’s Gamble also brings with it a special Frostivus rewards line, filled with a hoard of seasonal delights like gifts, penguin-inclusive celebrations, chat wheel sounds—and even a Winter Treasure.

Win normal matchmaking games to progress along the rewards line and collect your haul. Additional Winter Treasures are available for $2.49, and feature new item sets for Ancient Apparition, Death Prophet, Treant Protector, Alchemist, Bane, Leshrac, Sven, Dark Willow, and Mirana—as well as a very rare Ursa set and extremely rare Tiny set.

The Outlanders Update

Today’s update unleashes two new heroes — Snapfire and Void Spirit — and unveils the 7.23 Gameplay Update, featuring a host of changes, all-new features, and multiple reworked items and abilities.

Head over to The Outlanders update page for a full list of all the changes now available.

Fast Queue

We know that queue times have increased across the board recently, and the most significant factor contributing to this has been the stricter requirements that Ranked Roles imposes on the formation of matches. Prior to the introduction of Ranked Roles, the matchmaker had a wider pool of people to draw upon because of the few restrictions. In the past, when one or more players desired the same role, this conflict was resolved during the game itself, often with unpleasant results. This conflict is now resolved at queue time, but a price of this is that the matchmaker is often starved for players in the least-queued roles. The matchmaker must wait for players in the desired roles to enter the queue, or form sub-optimal matches with the players currently in queue to satisfy all role requirements. Usually the role most in demand by the matchmaker is Hard Support, but this is not always the case, and historically this has varied based on time of day, skill bracket, region, etc.

To address role imbalance more generally, today’s update introduces Fast Queue for Ranked matchmaking. Players in the Fast Queue are given priority by the matchmaker, and will find matches much more quickly. In order to earn games for Fast Queue, you must elect to play with all roles selected. Playing with all roles selected will also automatically place you in Fast Queue for free.

When playing solo with all roles selected, you will earn four more games for future use in the Fast Queue. When grouped as a party, players can also earn Fast Queue games if the party fulfills all roles between its players. Two-player parties earn 2 games each, three-player parties earn 1 game each. You can earn and store up to 60 Fast Queue games.

For example, if you are in a party of two where one player marks the three Core roles and the other marks the two Support roles, they will enter the Fast Queue for free, and will each be awarded two additional Fast Queue games. Parties of 5 will always enter the Fast Queue for free, but do not earn Fast Queue games. We’ve added new UI to make it easy to see to understand when you or your party is eligible for Fast Queue.

Our data clearly showed that players choosing roles without any additional constraints simply doesn’t result in enough role diversity for the matchmaking population to be healthy, negatively affecting both queue times and match quality. The motivation of the Fast Queue is to solve the “roll for mid” problem in a structured way that prevents in-game conflicts, while also providing enough role diversity to enable reasonable queue times.

Going forward, our immediate focus will be validating that Fast Queue is doing enough to improve health of the matchmaking pool, and tweaking as necessary. We’ll also be rolling out a small incremental update to the behavior and report system in the coming weeks. As always, please continue to give us feedback. We appreciate your patience thus far as we iterate on matchmaking.

Continuing Matchmaking Updates

Today’s update is once again centered on improving our Matchmaking system, focusing primarily on fixing issues that arose from our previous update.

We understand that some players, especially at the high end, have experienced a significant drop in matchmaking quality as a result of our recent iterations. We appreciate all of the feedback and match IDs that we’ve been receiving—your input has been very helpful and we hope you’ll continue to give us feedback after this update as well. We are committed to making matchmaking as good as it can be.

Please check out some more detailed information on the different aspects of today’s update below.

High MMR Partying
====
Due to the unusually high frequency of matchmaking abuses found in party games in high level matches–we’re adding a new rule to party matchmaking for Immortal ranks to help reduce some of the negative behaviors that have become common at these ranks and to help make solo queuing more viable. For any party that includes an Immortal player, every player in that party will be considered the same rank as the highest player in that party. While this will significantly reduce some of the more common abuse scenarios, the trade-off is that it will also affect “normal” parties with large MMR disparities. We think this trade-off is worthwhile at this high level, however, because matches are unlikely to be of high quality anyways with extremely disparate skill levels within a party given the shallow pool available. Such disparity has often made the games less fun for most players involved. We expect that this will have the net effect of reducing the number of party games at the highest skill levels by some amount, but compared to how infrequent high-MMR party games were in the past, the number of party games should still be higher than the historical average.

Matchup Combinations
====
We are making changes regarding what solo and party matchups are allowed. For any five-player party, they will now only be matched against other five-player parties, regardless of any other matchmaking consideration. We are unsure if an absolute requirement like this will result in net higher quality matchmaking due to the more limited opponent spectrum available in that case, but we know this is an aspect the community talks about often and we are going to do our best to work within those constraints. Similarly, any solo player will now only ever be considered for matches against at most one party of two. This means that from a solo player’s perspective, matches will always be either against a team of all five solo players or against three solo players and one party of two. This will be a hard requirement for the matchmaker instead of a situational consideration.

Match Quality and Role Symmetry
====
As a result of some of the new features we added recently, we found numerous bugs in the matchmaker’s evaluation that caused it to incorrectly rank various considerations. We’ve fixed those bugs and are expecting them to have a notable improvement in matchmaking. We will be monitoring the system after release to make sure the fixes have the intended effect. It is possible that there will be more issues to work out, so if you notice anything too far off please let us know.

We’ve also done various tuning to make Role Symmetry perform better, as there have been a few cases at certain brackets where it did not do a good job at all.

Finally, we are putting a bigger emphasis on having supports not be the highest MMR players in a game, to the extent that it’s possible within parties. We’ve heard feedback from both core and support players that they would prefer the intra-match rank allocation to be that way.

Medal Rework
====
We are back to 5 stars per medal now, 7 stars didn’t add enough upside compared to the visual noise and confusion.

In previous ranked seasons we’ve had a mechanism that caused the rank ranges that a given medal represents to shift over the season. While this gave some loose sense of progression, it made comprehension of what medals represent more difficult. It especially caused confusion after calibration where most players dropped medals despite winning most of their games.

As a result of removing this mechanism, and the star count re-scale, we are rebalancing what MMR range each medal represents. The distribution model we are using for this is the curve we had in the final months of the previous season (and what we’ve had historically). This will help ensure that medals long term represent the same skill level at the beginning of the season as they do at the end.

We are expecting there to be some confusion as a result of this rebalancing, since most players’ medals will be adjusted upwards somewhat to be more in tune with what the medals meant at the end of last season, but there is no actual change to anyone’s MMR number.

High-Water Mark
====
In the past, once a player reached a certain rank medal, they would retain that medal for the remainder of the ranked season, even if their actual MMR fell dramatically below that medal’s threshold. With today’s update, your medal will no longer represent a strict high-water mark. Instead, if you are ever more than one star away from your actual current rank, your medal will be adjusted to reflect that.

We originally added the high water mark because we thought it helped with player anxiety in ranked games. We think that is still true to some degree, however our data suggests that a one-star buffer captures most of that benefit for the majority of players. There are multiple downsides with having too broad of a spectrum on the high-water mark. First, it makes match fairness really hard to evaluate, because we always match based on MMR and not medals, and thus sometimes a game can appear to be good or bad as a result of the medals not representing reality. As it relates to the above goal in making it easier to evaluate matches, we think a one-star buffer helps balance both goals.

The second benefit is that it makes account buying indirectly less valuable. A player can no longer be on another account and keep a high medal for an entire season. Moreover, this change will also work in conjunction with the smurf detection system we’ve been working on. We are currently only using smurf detection to increase ranks upwards to the correct levels, but soon we plan to have it work in the reverse direction as well. With high-water marks only holding onto one star’s worth of a buffer, boosted or purchased accounts will now fall faster and lose the medal along with them.

Post-Game Match Evaluation
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We’re very thankful for the feedback we’ve received in the last few weeks. We think the feedback people had was well rooted in real issues. In our eyes, creating high quality matches is the most important thing we can do to help players enjoy the game, and we’re committed to improving our matchmaking system to achieve that goal.

In an effort to help facilitate the discussions on matchmaking, we’ve made a couple small changes to the post-game screen. The post-game screen will now show the average and max queue times for players in the match to help you determine if we formed a bad match too quickly or not. A summarized behavior category of the match will also be displayed, to help players understand if the reason for the lack of a better match was a shallower pool as a result of poor behavior or if it was because of the matchmaker doing a bad job. Finally, we are sorting the list of players in the post game screen from left to right with position 1 through 5 (parties will have a new type of indicator on them still so you can still see what the allocations were). We are hoping this makes it easier for you to evaluate if Role Symmetry is working as expected or not.

We recognize that adding more information here may cause a short-term increase in complaints rather than a decrease, but our long-term goal is to create the highest quality matches, and having more information exposed to players will ultimately lead to that end.

Post-Game Survey
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We’ve added a new post-game survey that is similar to ones we had a long time ago. Once a match has concluded, players will sometimes be surveyed to rate the experience in a match. This will allow us to gather more player sentiments on match quality to help find common patterns to what makes matches enjoyable vs what makes them unenjoyable. It’ll also help us find bugs or mistakes in our decisions sooner than later. Of course it’s natural that players will be more likely to equate winning a match to having a good match and losing a match to having a bad match, so we’ll normalize the data for those obvious scenarios to help filter through the background noise and bubble up useful signals. We’ll hold off on enabling this survey for a few days, to work through some bugs and update-related issues first.

Communication with Low Behavior Score
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Our last update included a wave of bans on users that were at the very extreme edge of the player population in terms of toxicity and negative behavior. However, those bans affected only a very small percentage of all players, and we also wanted a more gradual system to address players that are not at the furthest extreme but are still big outliers from the general player population. To that end, players that have a behavior score below 3000 are no longer able to use chat or voice until their score rises above the acceptable threshold. We believe this more gradual user-facing reinforcement mechanism will be valuable for both protecting the larger population from outliers and as a warning system for players who are moving in the wrong direction that might encourage them to improve. We set the threshold score at 3000 due to the low probability that anyone would be that low without having had a consistently negative impact on the experiences of many different teammates.

Party Spread
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As we’ve mentioned, extremely large MMR spreads within a party makes it hard for the matchmaker to find compatible opponents, and even in cases where it can, the matches are not necessarily enjoyable for the players involved due to some players having low impact/agency in the game while others have an outsized one. We recognize, however, that players still want to play with friends, so this aspect is not without trade-offs. To help address that, we’re reducing the acceptable MMR spread within a party from 2800 to 2000. We’ll consider further reductions to this spread over time, as the current value is still quite large, but we’d like to find the correct balance incrementally. This limitation only applies to ranked matchmaking.

Core Matchmaking Code
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We’ve made a significant revision to how the heart of the matchmaker iterates through the many players that are queuing at any given time. This revision restructures the matchmaker’s search process to have more flexibility with how considers the increasing number of requirements. Because the matchmaker must segment the large number of players into smaller combinations to consider, it was possible that the list of evaluable matches weren’t the highest quality in cases where the matchmaker excluded players due to soft considerations early in the process. Previously it was not very efficient if there were too many considerations within a team and against a team. Because of the nature of this rewrite, we are expecting there to be bugs for the next few days that may cause matchmaking to be sub-optimal, but are hopeful that this investment will allow us to more easily increase matchmaking quality in the long run.

Reports and Player Bans
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This update will remove some methods of reporting that were not rate limited in order to improve the signal-to-noise ratio, especially at the conclusion of a game.

We have also been refining our booster and exploiter detection algorithms and have been doing regular ban waves in the background. We will continue refining these systems over the coming weeks. Banned players will also no longer show up or consume rank spots on the leaderboard. This fix was implemented a few days ago, as some of you may have noticed due to leaderboard ranking shifts.

Going Forward
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We are expecting the next day or two to be a little unstable as we iron out issues with the update, but after that we’d appreciate continuing with the feedback on your match experiences. Please make sure to always include a matchid with your feedback, as we often find them missing that crucial data needed to follow up.

Our focus going into the next few weeks will be on monitoring and measuring the results of this update and following up as needed based on what we learn. The other big category we are going to be focusing on soon is revamping the new player experience for an update in the future. In addition, a lot of the ongoing work we are doing on smurf detection will indirectly help us in the future with placing new players into more ideal matches once they’ve completed their initial new player experience phase. We are hoping that after we get matchmaking into a better spot, it’ll be an ideal time for brand new players to join in as well as for existing players to invite their friends into the game with the help of a better new player ramp.

Dota Plus Autumn Update

Today’s patch brings a few features to Dota Plus in the wake of the Battle Pass season, as well as the addition of all-new item sets for Lion, Slardar, and Crystal Maiden to the Dota Plus Rewards section.

Plus subscribers can now use the Avoid Player feature to exclude unwanted players from their matchmaking pool, get precise stacking info with the Creep Pull Timers, ward more effectively with the Ward Suggestions, and see your total incoming damage breakdown by type.

This update also replaces the old machine learning hero suggestions with the Friends and Foes feature from the Battle Pass, transfers some new Chat Wheel Sounds into your Dota Plus reward options, and adds the ability to customize your Chat Wheel phrases with emoticons.

To top it off, we’ve also introduced the Season 4 Matchmaking Quests and some new hero quests to add some more ways to bump up the number of shards in your stash, and players who queue into the Hard Support role in Ranked Matchmaking can even earn bonus shards.

Lastly, this year’s Trove Carafe will only be available for two more weeks, so players still interested in purchasing should make sure to snag some treasure before it’s gone.

Matchmaking Update for the Next Ranked Season

The new Ranked season is here. Today’s blog will go over the changes we are doing as well as areas we are still thinking about. The changes in this update will be rolled out gradually over the next two days as we iron out bugs. The calibration part of the new season will begin this Thursday.

Role Symmetry
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One big observation that we had since the previous update was that matches with misaligned roles had a meaningful impact on game quality. An example of this is when the mid player for one team has the highest rank on their team, and the mid player on the other team has the lowest rank. This tended to cause games to be really volatile and not enjoyable. In the past we used to prioritize rank spread between the two teams as one of the main criteria for the matchmaker to judge success, however as part of this update we are changing its priorities. It will now put a big emphasis on making sure that the roles are more symmetric rather than other criteria. This will also be something we will continue to tweak and iterate on over the coming weeks to make sure the algorithm’s search structure is correctly tuned and optimized for this.

Draft Role Report
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To help ensure everyone plays the role they queued for, this update includes a role report function during the drafting and beginning minutes of the game. Starting with today’s update, using this information along with some other detection mechanisms, we will be much more aggressive in punishing players who abuse the system.

Core and Support Ranks
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Some baseline dota skills and knowledge are shared between the Support and Core roles. So having the two numbers be entirely separated didn’t seem like a good idea to us, as we’d be losing valuable information about the player as well as promoting some warped incentives when you play your least used roles. As such, when you win or lose a game queued as one type of role, we’ll also update the MMR of the other type by a percentage of that game’s gains or losses. We’ll be tweaking that ratio over time as we figure out the best balance.

Ban Waves
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This update includes a few different ban waves for bad actors. The first ban wave is to players with exceptionally low behavior scores. We will continue to do regular ban waves for users who fall into this small percentage of the community. Users that reach this low level of behavior in the game are too big of a tax on the rest of the community and are not wanted. The second case where users will be banned today is for anyone detected of violating the Steam Service Agreement that prevents the purchase or sale of Steam accounts. Buying accounts to get a higher or lower rank is not allowed and causes negative side effects for the play experience of others. This doesn’t catch all account sales that happen, but we think we have caught enough to take some action. We are also banning players who’ve been detected using exploits to gain an advantage over other players. In the coming weeks, we will be refining the detection algorithms for these abusive behaviors and will begin issuing weekly bans that will go into effect without advance notice to violating accounts. Accounts that we ban will now also have the associated phone number permanently blacklisted from being able to have access to ranked matchmaking.

Smurfs
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We recognize that recently there has been an increase in smurf accounts. We share the sentiments the community has expressed on this issue and we consider it a high priority for us to solve as well. There isn’t a single solution that can address this issue easily, but we hope that a combination of multiple different changes over time will reduce the negative impacts and frequency of it.

The first change in this area is the usage of phone number verification. We’ve found a loophole that allowed a large number of users to play ranked without a unique phone number attached. We have fixed this bug and any user that does not have their account set up correctly will be prevented from queuing until it is resolved. This will also affect accounts that have been actively playing in ranked matchmaking, rather than just new accounts going forward.

We are also changing the mechanism to grant Ranked access. Rather than a fixed number of games, we are changing the metric to be a time based one and increased that amount to 100 hours of playtime. Any users that already have access to ranked without meeting this requirement will be removed from ranked until they’ve played enough time.

Our general approach to Smurfs is to try to get accounts that are performing higher than expected to their correct rank faster. The first change on this axis is to adjust MMR by more than just +/- 25 when we detect that a user has been clearly over performing (based on how the played heroes usually perform at a given rank). This will be an ongoing process as we get better at detecting this, but from the data analysis we’ve done so far, we think we can make some progress using this. This change will be silent for a few days as we verify the detection mechanism is working as intended, and will be enabled once that is verified. The other change we are making is how we calibrate the initial ranked MMR for new accounts entering ranked. Leveraging the new hours played gate we are adding for ranked access, we will be using your account’s historical performance more aggressively to place you into a more accurate initial rank. In the past we introduced a really low cap on initial rank, we think that was a mistake on our part, because it caused smurfs to unnecessarily impact a large volume of games before arriving at a closer-to-accurate rank.

Moving forward, we will be spending more time on live detection of smurfing and boosting behaviors. This will hopefully allow us to put detected accounts into an aggressive recalibration, resulting in a much quicker adjustment to an accurate MMR while reducing the number of games that are ruined in the process. In addition to this aggressive recalibration, we’ll also be detecting and banning accounts for egregious boosting or exploiting of game mechanics.

Miscellaneous Changes
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To help reduce role confusion when queuing as a party, we’ve added a detailed popup for times when your party’s selected roles are incompatible, such as when two players have only selected the same role.

While this update is banning extremely low behavior score players, we’ve also increased the number of commends available for each player so you can recognize good behavior in your games as well.

Other Thoughts
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There are a few other general changes that we are not sure are needed yet or haven’t been able to address yet, but are on our radar. We thought it might be a good idea to supplement this blog with information in the hope that community conversation about it can be helpful.

– High MMR games: While we have some changes here that directly and indirectly improve matchmaking quality for the extremely high end bracket, we will be closely monitoring this to see if other changes are needed.

– Hard Support: For certain MMR brackets, queue times and game quality would be meaningfully improved if there were a bigger percentage of players queuing for Hard Support. Many of the subpar matches we’ve found were a result of there not being enough players queuing for this role. We are exploring to see if any solutions can be effective for incentivising this. We also know that it is more common that you’ll get Hard Support if you queue for all the roles, and we’d like that to eventually not be the case.

– Role queue abuse: As mentioned above, we’ll be much more aggressive in punishing players who don’t play the role they’ve queued for. If we find that role abuse persists despite these efforts, we’ll consider implementing role-specific bans that prevent a user from queuing for the abused role in future matchmaking games after they’ve left low priority. Our hope is that implementing such measures will be unnecessary as the results of our other changes.

– Smurfs: Dota 2 being a free-to-play game introduces various matchmaking related challenges. One option we have thought about is having Ranked access have a one time entry cost, and that access can be lost for players who regularly ruin games. We may also grandfather in users that we have enough data on, but we haven’t gone too deep in assessing the details here. We aren’t sure if we need this as a solution yet either, we hope that other solutions can have a good effect at improving the matchmaking ecosystem.

In terms of our development focus moving forward, we are spending more of our time than usual focusing on matchmaking quality. We believe that is the right call given how much opportunity there is to make the day-to-day experience better for all players. We look forward to seeing your feedback on this update, and to continue to hear feedback in the following weeks for how to improve matchmaking.

Grand Finale


We’re in the final weeks of Operation Shattered Web, and players have until March 30th to play missions, earn progress, and redeem Operation rewards.

Today the final mission card goes live which means we’ll start issuing Diamond Operation Coins to users who have completed 100 missions. This week’s card, “Time To Take Out The Trash”, includes a second co-op Strike mission tasking players with finding and eliminating Franz Kriegeld. Don’t let him escape!

Patch Notes

Today’s update includes a revamped buy menu, a simple way to customize (and share) your crosshair, and an all new way to personalize your favorite agents! 

Introducing Patches


Looking for a way to personalize your agent? Patches featuring a variety of classic designs can now be applied to specific locations on each character model, and you can apply more than one for each agent. You can find patches in the CS:GO Patch Pack, available now.

Choose Your Own Crosshair


Customizing your crosshair has never been easier. Head over to the settings menu, where you’ll find a variety of crosshair settings that can be tuned to your personal taste. You can share your crosshair code with others or import a code to try someone else’s.

Full Buy


Today’s update also includes a visual rework of the buy menu, featuring an interactive preview of your character holding weapons and equipment. Along with some slight rearranging, now you can preview the equipment you can afford with illuminated icons in the buy wheel.

New operation missions – Light Buy


Maximize your earnings. Do more with less. Play new Shattered Web Operation missions beginning Tuesday at 2:00 pm PT.