Overwatch 2: All Planned Changes To Competitive Rank & Matchmaking, Explained
Are Overwatch 2’s numerous rank and matchmaking issues clearing up anytime soon?
From the very beginning since its release, Overwatch 2 has had an enormous level of player frustration regarding the matchmaking system and Competitive Ranks. While this has been a bitter element of the game for many across the first three seasons, the game devs are finally starting to listen to player feedback and incorporate some tweaks. Here are all the changes to competitive rank and matchmaking planned for future seasons of Overwatch 2.
Every Change Planned For Overwatch 2’s Competitive Rank & Matchmaking Sytem
There have been plenty of changes that have been requested by fans of Overwatch 2 from the moment it first released, with many of them being related to the matchmaking system and Competitive play. While most things thrown out there by fans don’t often make the most sense, there are a few points that the Overwatch 2 team is taking into serious consideration for the game’s future. Here’s a complete breakdown of every change being planned and considered, as confirmed by officials.
Removal of SR Decay
SR Decay was added to Overwatch 2 during the first Competitive season but mainly went unnoticed until players logged in for the first time after the launch of Season 2. SR Decay was an effect that bumped down your SR after a competitive season to make it feel like you were climbing in the season to follow, even though you would only really be working your way back up to your previous rank.
Because of this, players logging into Season 2 who finished in Diamond 3, for example, may have logged in to find themselves at the rank of Platinum 2, meaning all of their end-of-season rewards were awarded at Platinum 2, their current rank. This is quite a significant change from Overwatch 1, which sent out season rewards based on a player’s highest rank, which caused some major disappointment in the community.
On top of this, SR Decay caused all sorts of issues for the beginning of the following season, as players who had peaked in the likes of Masters lobbies, earning the title card ‘Masters Challenger,’ were being matched as low as Platinum games, and steamrolling their opponents. This made the game feel impossible to win for those who belong in the Platinum rank and caused many unfair advantages or disadvantages for those competing.
Thankfully, SR Decay is being removed in Overwatch 2 Season 4. As stated by Overwatch 2 Systems Designer, Gavin on Reddit, your MMR and SR should now match up in most scenarios, which will help avoid the unfair matchmaking of players being forced to compete at two or three ranks above or below where they belong.
Showing Rank Percentage
A new change the Overwatch 2 team plans to implement into the Competitive system is a visual rank percentage. This idea involves displaying the rate of players you are currently ranked higher than within your division to help give you a better idea of where you stand while trying to rank up.
This change responds to many players begging for SR to be visible again, based on a direct number that goes up or down with each win or loss, just like in Overwatch 1. While SR being visible was at least very transparent, it did also cause a lot of players to feel pressured about their rank, especially when going on a losing streak and watching the SR number go down and down again.
While bringing back SR seems unlikely, this rank percentage idea also sits a little strange with me. It seems like an odd addition, too, considering more significant issues are occurring regarding Competitive Play and ranking. I am particularly intrigued to see if this addition brings back the same pressure the numbers of SR did, in terms of players desperately wanting to maintain being ranked higher than X% of others, which leads to more toxicity and flaming in matches.
However, all we can do is wait to see when it’s implemented to find out if it genuinely does anything for Competitive players in terms of helpfulness and transparency.
Competitive Title Card Changes
Competitive Title Cards have been an earnable reward since Overwatch Season 1, available to any player who exceeds the metal ranks and reaches Diamond, Masters, Grand Master, or Top 500. Every player achieving these ranks will earn a Diamond Challenger, Masters Challenger, Grand Master Challenger, or Top 500 Challenger title card to equip on their profile.
Unfortunately, while they were intended to be a fun reward for the top ranks and give players something to aim toward, rank title cards have faced much backlash. This is because a player who may be Diamond on Tank can earn the card and equip it to their profile as intended, yet this player may only fall into Gold on DPS or Support. And as you can assume, it can be very intimidating when a player shows up to a Gold lobby match with ‘Diamond Challenger’ under their name.
This has caused many players to immediately act out and flame, troll, or throw their games in response, as someone two ranks above them should easily carry their team to victory, right? Unfortunately for these players, the cards are a little misleading, as often these ‘Diamond Challenger’ players actually belong in the Gold lobbies for the roles they are currently queued for.
The Overwatch team has admitted that rank title cards can be confusing and daunting. To help fix this, the devs will look into clarifying these titles and making them better suited to Competitive Play. This change may be as simple as reworking the title from ‘Diamond Challenger’ to ‘Diamond Tank Challenger’ and so on, or they may receive a bigger tweak. Either way, it’s a good move for the future and should help stop players from immediately throwing fits and blaming a broken matchmaking system before the match even kicks off.
That’s everything you need to know about all the changes to competitive rank and matchmaking planned for future seasons of Overwatch 2. For more helpful guides, lists, and news, check out the rest of our content. We have a variety of Overwatch 2 topics to keep you updated on all of the latest game additions including new hero skins, maps, and balance patches, so feel free to scroll down and have a look at our related links below.
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