Overwatch is dropping “Avoid this Player” matchmaking option

By Marshall Lemon, Tuesday, 21 June 2016 21:43 GMT

Since Overwatch’s matchmaking isn’t working as intended, Blizzard is axing its “avoid this player” feature.

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Overwatch is dropping “Avoid this Player” matchmaking option

Following recent changes to characters like McCree and Widowmaker, Blizzard is now turning its attention to Overwatch’s matchmaking system. Specifically, the game will no longer feature an “Avoid This Player” matchmaking option, since it’s creating a worse experience for some players.

In short, Avoid This Player is a feature which lets you selectively choose someone you don’t want to play with, usually because of differences in skill. While that sounds find on principle, in reality the feature has been throwing some major wrenches into Overwatch’s matchmaking capabilities.

“One of the best Widowmaker players in the world complained to us about long queue times,” director Jeff Kaplan explained. “We looked into it and found that hundreds of other players had avoided him (he’s a nice guy – they avoided him because they did not want to play against him, not because of misbehavior). The end result was that it took him an extremely long time to find a match. The worst part was, by the time he finally got a match, he had been waiting so long that the system had “opened up” to lower skill players. Now one of the best Widowmaker players was facing off against players at a lower skill level.”

As you might imagine, this creates a kind of snowball effect where the same skilled players are constantly being avoided. For that reason, Blizzard will remove player-avoiding features while tweaking the matchmaking system to ensure such scenarios cannot unfold. Which, if all goes well, should be good news for Overwatch players old and new alike.

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