Stuff That Sucks: Heroes of the Storm ranked matchmaking

Heroes of the Storm has been a wonderful addition to the Blizzard library, but it's had some issues, as of late, and they mostly relate to ranked matchmaking. And that's the subject of the latest Stuff That Sucks.


Heroes of the Storm has been a phenomenal addition to Blizzard's library and a great way to highlight its ongoing franchises. It's grown leaps and bounds across the eSports scene and, of course, it's definitely a great game for just about anybody to pick up. However, Blizzard's MOBA is definitely not perfect and one glaring imperfection in particular is the subject of this edition of Stuff That Sucks.

Join Greg Burke as he discusses the matchmaking system in Heroes of the Storm and how it works. Then listen as he explains about the problems that have arisen since the recent Heroes of the Storm patch. Matchmaking isn't quite what it was and the game is starting to feel worse for it, but all is not lost, as Greg offers a couple of suggestions to help improve the current situation.

Catch the full video below and be sure to catch up with previous editions of Stuff That Sucks. For more, be sure to subscribe to Shacknews on YouTube.

From The Chatty
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    October 5, 2015 3:30 PM

    Shack Staff posted a new article, Stuff That Sucks: Heroes of the Storm ranked matchmaking

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      October 5, 2015 3:56 PM

      they don't want to risk the added toxicity from showing mmr because their player base isn't large enough yet. I agree that shown mmr is a huge boost theoretically to allow better players to carry and give pointers, but this is assuming some higher level of maturity along with the mmr and that isn't really the case. the mmr grind is harsh and you're subject to a lot of painful coin flips, but if you can't get past the 20s in 80+ games then you probably aren't a sub-20 player yet.

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        October 5, 2015 4:58 PM

        The easy fix is to hide it from the public and only make it view-able to self/friends

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        October 5, 2015 6:40 PM

        Funny enough i lose badly when one team member is around 2200MMR playing a specialist. not sure why? But that's a pattern in my games for some reason.

        We win we people ping Correctly, and Go to correct pings.

        Between 20-30 you have 2 people ping like crazy in a match, showing the MMR of the higher rank player would tell me hes better and should probably learn from him.

        I cant climb because you get the same amount of rank points for loss and win, so you have to win +3 games in a row to climb the ladder, and unfortunately I get stuck with Auto Lockers, picking Zeratul as the last hero when the enemy team has no targets for him..stuff like that.

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          October 5, 2015 7:04 PM

          some heroes scale easier, but high mmr really needs to carry as assassin or warrior to put you in contention. it even matters what your distribution of mmr is, I find that higher variance is harder to win with and balance is typically better unless their low mmr is playing a support and following well.

          as far as being unlucky it's hard to judge if that's just selective memory or not, after enough games your luck should even out. should.

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            October 5, 2015 9:24 PM

            Players in Mid Rank tend not to play the Draft well. they Select there "go to" hero, instead of maybe changing there mind when they see what the other team is picking.

            Its possible to lose the game on the draft screen, and that really sucks

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              October 5, 2015 9:30 PM

              If you are truly better than those n00bs you are complaining about, then you will rise above them and not get matched with them in the long run.

              Most players overestimate their ability and think the system should let them get to rank 1 if they play enough.

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      October 5, 2015 4:48 PM

      If you really think you are in an incorrect bracket for your skill, play stuff that capitalizes on poor organization like Nova and Zeratul. Or heroes that can carry a team like a lot of ranged assassins can.

      Also, I think that people of all sort over estimate their skill in MOBAs by a huge margin because it's so incredibly easy to blame 'bad teammates'.

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        October 5, 2015 4:52 PM

        I'd like to see a moba replay review where people could give you quick feedback on team fights or situations you're unsure about. I remember watching a team creep up mid lane in garden of terror as muradin, and as they started entering the forest I jumped the shrubs and started a pivotal end game team fight. we won the fight and the game, but even now I can't tell you if that was a good move or if I was bailed out by everyone else.

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          October 5, 2015 5:00 PM

          The only thing you can look at is the results really. If it worked, then you are a brilliant tactician, if not, you are a lowly feeder.

          Just far too many variables to ever hope to account for. Like oh that dude is 1 pixel away from the Tyrande stun that turns the whole fight, or one dude got dismounted just prior to the team fight by the creeps and was a hair late to the fight leading to a loss.

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      October 5, 2015 5:18 PM

      Rank mm in dota 2 shows the highest mmr player on both teams like your suggestion. Solo queue in mobas is basically a trust building exercise with random internet people. It's amazing that it works at all.

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      October 5, 2015 6:35 PM

      The worst thing is that they disallowed 3 and 4 person teams from ranked matchmaking in a misguided attempt to improve it. If they were going that route they needed to split off solo matchmaking and team matchmaking, otherwise it's pointless.

      So now, not only is the matching still just as bad, but I also can't play with my friends anymore without resorting to quick match. It's causing my friends to abandon the game.

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      October 5, 2015 7:15 PM

      Poor matchmaking is probably the main reason why I stopped playing. Games always seemed stacked one way or another, either our team destroys the other team or we get curb middle ground. Hope Blizzard fixes it because the game seems like it would be fun if the matchmaking was better. The fact that matches seemed pre-destined and totally lop sided killed all the fun for me, unfortunately.

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        October 5, 2015 9:41 PM

        Blizz are reducing the stat gains between level 2-14 in the future so that a level advantage won't have such a huge impact in the early levels:

        Death timers are also being increased for those levels to make decision-making in the early game more important. I think the proposed changes sound great. It should prevent one team from gaining tons of kills in the first couple of minutes and a significant level lead with which they can easily snow-ball to victory.

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          October 5, 2015 11:01 PM

          "Death timers are also being increased for those levels to make decision-making in the early game more important."

          Oh boy, the punishment for having shitty YOLO teammates will be magnified, can't wait! ;)

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            October 5, 2015 11:05 PM

            Time for even more YOLOing and drink/bio runs between deaths!

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              October 5, 2015 11:17 PM

              Why yes Illidan, PLEASE dive into a group of three all by yourself. You're doing great!


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            October 5, 2015 11:21 PM

            It'll might be a shit-storm initially. People from LoL/DotA had to learn that it's OK to brawl early on in HotS, and now they'll have to un-learn that (thought not completely) and be a little more careful.

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              October 5, 2015 11:40 PM

              Yeah, it'll still be pretty aggressive. The reward for successful ganks or bullying someone back home will be greater though.

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                October 5, 2015 11:41 PM

                Like, killing someone in the first three levels, right now, who cares? They respawn almost immediately

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                  October 6, 2015 12:03 AM

                  But the level advantage in the early game is currently really strong. I'm not sure how the death-timer increase and level-up-stat-bonus reduction change will play out. Blizz say they want to make it easier to conquer objectives once a team-fight around it gets decided in the early game, so that it's not possible to re-spawn quickly and steal the objective in the last second. This happens a lot in the Haunted Mines map and it can be quite annoying, imho. As for the level-up-stat-bonus reduction: that should reduce snow-balling.

                  How should players' strategy change? I guess zerg-rushing the objective, one-by-one, in the early game won't be smart. Instead, one should wait for the team to assemble and then go for it, just like in the late-game. One can still take some risks, because if one loses, the level advantage the enemy will get won't make a huge difference anymore.

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                    October 6, 2015 12:06 AM

                    To your first point, gaining XP for kills is extremely low. You're much better off with soak in each lane than teamfighting for secured kills at the expense of presence in one lane. I think its why being on top of XP soak is so important.

                    I think teams trickling into objectives or teamfights is already a bad idea, as it is in any MOBA. This adjustment will just hammer the point home, I think.

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          October 5, 2015 11:24 PM

          The snowball prevention thing is pretty cool. Level 6-10 are generally the most critical in the game. If you can hit 10 with a 2 level advantage then you're in an AMAZING position, maybe the most powerful in the game. If a team's core doesn't die by level 13 then they have a shot at rubberbanding back into the game, partly thanks to the flattened difference between levels later in the game.

          The difference between 17 and 19 in late game is not practically very much. Between 9 and 11, ho boy

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      October 5, 2015 9:42 PM

      I've been getting slapped down in ranks the last couple weeks. A lot of AFKers, which is surprising, and a lot of horrible drafting, like a sudden trend of dual supports when the other team does standard or dual war.

      Massive, massive losing streaks that can get frustrating. I was climbing from the low 20's to the mid teens previously then got smacked down to the low 20's very quickly.

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        October 5, 2015 11:04 PM

        Same. I placed rank 18, was in the mid-teens for a bit, down in the mid-20s right now. The number of shitty players who don't show common sense 101 is insane.

        If I don't solo then I do way better because I know there's at least one other person on the team I can trust. I'm not thrilled about that. For a while one of my favorite things about HotS is that I could solo queue and it was fine, while with Dota 2 I'd only queue with a 4-5 stack. HotS is turning into the same, which I really don't want.

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          October 5, 2015 11:25 PM

          I feel like the game is punishing me purposely lately. I was at like 2300+ MMR on hotslogs which I built up over time tooth and nail and then I have been on the decline down to 1900. I originally placed 21, fought my way to 14 then down at like 24 now with my recent decline.

          There was a massive change in the last few weeks. I solo queue'd HL a lot, don't even QM anymore just HL.

          I just had a game where the entire team kept splitting, every person went and did their own thing and got killed while the other team ran 4/5 murderball. I was Rehgar and just followed the tank in futility.

          I hate that this keeps happening in rank ~20 matches.

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      October 5, 2015 10:07 PM

      I'm playing less often. It's frustrating to be the only person that knows what's going on in these types of games. At least in something like Destiny crucible, even if my team is brain damaged I can still do a lot of damage too the opposing team.

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      October 5, 2015 10:59 PM

      Showing everyone's MMR can be dangerous as it can lead to people being douche bags about it. Dota's approach is pretty solid, show the average rating of your team and the person with the highest rating on each team and their rating.

      Also, I don't understand how the MMR can be completely different from one's rank. I don't play HotS much anymore, but in SC 2 the MMR was hidden, but was used as a guide for setting one's division. So if your MMR grew quickly, you'd be promoted. Why would one's rank be hugely different from MMR?

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      October 5, 2015 11:30 PM


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