Storm League Bronze 5 Update
With the launch of Storm League season 1 we have seen a dramatic improvement in rank distribution. One of the primary changes in this release was in how rank is determined. In the past, rank and rating were two entirely different concepts, both of which were updated differently after each game. It was very common for a player's rank and rating to diverge throughout each season which could cause the matchmaking system to struggle to find games.
With the changes introduced this season, rank is always updated by taking the change in rating and determining the equivalent number of rank points to reward. This leaves very few ways rating and rank can diverge and results in most players being shown a number equivalent to their rating.
Overall, we are very happy with how the changes are looking; however, we are aware of the inconsistencies players are currently experiencing in Bronze 5. With the new design, players in Bronze 5 will gain/lose far fewer points per game than players in all of the other leagues and divisions. The reason for this is a bit technical but we wanted to take the opportunity to elaborate on what's going on.
Under the hood, matchmaking rating is simply a number on a bell curve. Every league and division encompasses a range of values on the same curve. For example, if the overall bell curve ranges from -10.0 to 10.0 and the range 1.0 to 1.5 maps to Gold 1, then a player with a rating of 1.25 will have the equivalent rank of Gold 1 & 500/1000 points. These numbers are intentionally made up as the real ones are always subject to change but the idea is the same.
The reason for the decrease in points awarded in Bronze 5 is that the range of ratings that maps to Bronze 5 is much larger than other divisions. The difference is that this much larger range of ratings still maps to the same number of rank points. As a result, despite being rewarded the same change in matchmaking rating, the rank points awarded may be lower. This is visualized by the graph below:
We understand that this inconsistency is a negative experience for players so we will be exploring some ways to improve it.
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