Life may not be simple, but gaming online should be. Sleek, organized, and intuitive should be the hallmark descriptions for any online service. This is especially true for finding, joining, and creating fun and competitive matches.
Lucky for us, the good folks behind Xbox Live® have been working diligently towards making this a satisfying reality for everyone. They’ve created a deep but elegant matchmaking service. Whether in Ranked or Player Match (unranked) games, the tools now exist to foster community and match like-minded players around the world with each other.
The Dividing Line
Seasoned veterans of the Xbox Live service will note one substantial change immediately. There are now two types of matchmaking to choose from, letting you decide if you’re feeling competitive or would rather have a more relaxed match.
Gamers that wish to prove their skills and up their ranking can participate in competitive “Ranked” matches, while those looking for a more casual, social experience can find just what they need with “Player” matches. Whichever you choose, both systems do some fancy footwork to get you into the best matches possible.
Competition Junkies, Meet TrueSkill
It’s not fun to enter a lobby and find you’re playing against people several levels higher than you, and it’s exactly that problem the new TrueSkill™ matchmaking system solves. For nearly every ranked game you play, Xbox Live uses your TrueSkill to find the best match for your skill level, so every gamer has a chance to be competitive in every match they play. This should significantly drop the likelihood of power gamers combing through Custom Match to prey on weaker opponents.
The idea behind the system is simple: It tracks every match you play and how well you play it, which lets the system match you up against players near your own skill level. It’s also a game- and match-specific system; your TrueSkill deciphers data from each different game and even each different match-type within the game.
For example, if you’re dominant in straight up races in Burnout Revenge™, but struggle a bit more in Crash mode, you’ll be matched up against players of appropriate skill for each game mode individually. For those that crave competition, the TrueSkill matchmaking system gives you the gift of knowing that a truly competitive match is just a couple clicks away.
The Player Match Community
For those not in the mood to get their serious game face on, there are Quick Match and Custom Match options just for you. While ranked games use the TrueSkill matchmaking system to ensure quality competition, Player Matches employ a host of new features designed to maximize fun, foster community, and give you a measure of control for deciding who you play and don’t play against. Here are a few highlights to look forward to:
Half the fun is the game you play. The other half is who you play with. Whether it’s ranked games with TrueSkill matchmaking or the Player Match system locating the best game with the most compatible people, the new matchmaking system is making sure the second half of the equation is as fun as can be.