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reddit[Effort Post] More Issues that People Forget About: Loser's Pool, Mini Tanks, Rock Paper Scissors (RPS), Level Caps


Soul Crusher
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Look, I want to make this sweet and simple, but I want to make sure to address all these things. A lot of the times, issues like the loser's pool, mini tanks, RPS, and level caps come up for a brief moment before disappearing in subreddit memes. I would love a discussion on these topics that doesn't fade away. So here goes.

LOSER'S POOL

The loser's pool is supposedly a matchmaking tool on Ladder that matches people on a losing streak of 3 losses or more. Before I continue, my stance here is NOT that matchmaking is rigged. What I want is transparency from the development team about what the loser's pool actually is.

  • Source: The most official source that covers the loser's pool is a video from CWA 2 years ago. Here is the link, and the discussion begins at 2:50. "Players who are at three or more losses in a row are put into a separate matchmaking pool."
  • Explanation: This is simply not true. Back in August 2020, I took some data for 55 matches in a row. If the loser's pool is defined by 3 losses, then I was in the loser's pool 7 times. Only in 1 of those 7 times did I face someone else in the loser's pool. Here is an image of my data. Imgur Link. And for anyone who uses the API to scrape the data, I'm sure you'll find similar cases.
  • What is Needed: I dislike how SuperCell hasn't talked about this directly for a while. More over, I dislike that the predominant knowledge on the Loser's Pool was incorrect. I would very much appreciate transparency on matchmaking mechanics that are in play on Ladder or elsewhere in Clash Royale.

MINI TANKS AND STALLING

u/dagunner did a great effort post discussing the changes on xbow and defensive play styles in Clash Royale. For this post, I want to focus my attention on Knight, because no one talks about Knight.

  • Stance: I think that Knight offers way too much value, given his HP and cost, and ease of cycling. I understand that RoyaleAPI shows that Knight is balanced, at 50%, but his use-rate is enormous. At 29% GC, 22% Ladder, 30% CC, and 24% Top Ladder. He clearly outshadows all other mini-tanks.
  • Explanation:
    • Because of how hefty Knight's HP is, he is able to provide very high value defense. I understand that is essentially his purpose; however, my argument is that the value he offers is too high. A standalone knight can effectly defend against most standalone and higher value cards.
    • At 3 elixir, he is incredibly easy to cycle, so even at an elixir disadvantage, Knight can be placed to shut down a push or buy a LOT of time (the stalling playstyle).
    • Because of his low cost, a player can overcommit, especially for spell cycling, as long as they have 3 elixir left for some rapid defense. I've heard the following argument over the years: "If you're not punishing a naked rocket, you're just playing poorly". But for a lot of decks, it really isn't that easy to punish, because of high value defensive cards like Knight.
    • Knight's defensive viability allows him to act as an effective counterpush for bait and for Graveyard, which has been very strong in this meta.
    • A ton of people hated XBow for being defensive, hence the nerf. I genuinely think that the contributors to the defensive playstyle were Knight and Tesla.
  • What is Needed: I think Knight needs some balancing. It has been the go-to choice of mini-tank for a long time because it simply offers too much value. I hope the comments will host good discussion on potential reworks or nerfs.

ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS (RPS)

For those of you who don't know, RPS simply talks about pre-determined matchups. For example, will an XBow player beat a Royal Giant earthquake? Obviously not. Pro players have used RPS matchups to snipe other pro-players as well. RPS matchups typically revolve around 1 specific card or a card synergy that completely shuts down another specific card/card synergy.

  • Stance: I think RPS matchups are really unhealthy for the game. Having a bad matchup is one thing, but having a completely unwinnable matchup is not okay. Supercell has been approaching balance changes in a manner that supports RPS.
  • Explanation:
    • Earthquake: To allow you all to note any potential bias, you should know I play XBow Bowler. No knight, no tesla, no rocket, and I'm proud of it. But anytime I face a player with an earthquake, I can't win, no matter how well I play or how poorly they play. Earthquake is too effective of an answer to XBow, while also providing fairly significant tower damage given its area of effect. It should also be noted that Earthquake cycle is very popular and effective in the current meta.
    • Mother Witch: First off, mother witch is pretty bad. This is an example that is part of the RPS problem, but is so weak that it doesn't even matter. Mother witch, in my interpretation, was an attempt to reduce the popularity of Graveyard. Simply, I think it's a bad precedent to balance the game by adding a RPS counter.
  • What is Needed: Simply put, balancing should never support RPS matchups. If there are matchups that predetermine the outcome of a match, it should be considered unhealthy for the game.

LEVEL CAPS IN CLAN WARS II

This was one of the biggest complaints for Clan Wars II that Supercell simply decided not to address effectively. Here's the short of it. Clan Wars II is demoralizing when lower-level players consistently lose to higher level players. It slows progression for those who need it and offers progression for those who don't need it.

  • Stance: There was a very strong presence of voices asking for level caps in Clan Wars II, but then they all seemed to disappear. In Clan Wars, I lose 3/4 of my matches consistently. Because my deck level averages are 11.375, 11.25, 11, and 13 for four of my decks. I'm sure its a very similar case to many f2p players out there. I truly believe that it is reasonable to ask for a fair playing ground to earn rewards, on a mode that is meant to distribute awards.

If you believe that level caps would make Clan Wars II more accessible to you, please do not stop advocating for it. But also, be kind to the mods, the developers, and the community managers.

You can make yourself heard without being toxic about it.

That's all I have for today folks, I do hope this sparks some productive discussion about some really important issues with the game. If I have said anything incorrect or disproved in this post, I will add some edits. Stay safe~

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