Much criticism has been leveled at Valorant's Ranking system, both from professionals and players. A post was made on Reddit by Jon “EvrMoar” Walker, Senior Competitive Designer outlining some of the issues. The end result was that the rating "isn't as bad as people think", but they're still working on it. The problem is, if these reported issues “do not exist”, what is going on that infuriates Valorant's ranked pros and grinders on this system? Something is not matching.
It's important to note that Valorant News on Twitter points out that Riot is tweaking the ranking algorithm. Hopefully, that means you'll be playing against people closer to your skill level. This will likely increase queue times, but it's worth it.
The issues players are reporting are multiple. Perhaps the biggest is lack of features like unbalanced queues or blending issues. People seem to think there is a winner/loser queue where they are constantly pitted against others who are sure to beat them. They also seem to think their teammates are worse than they are.
On the topic of a winner/loser queue, EvrMoar spoke about this in particular.
“We cannot solve problems that do not exist. A great example is the winner/loser queue. There is no such thing in Valorant matchmaking that does this, or even a reason matchmaking would make you think it does. So we wanted to find out why people thought so. After investigating this issue, there appears to be a confirmation bias that this happens. It doesn't matter how much he doesn't exist; if someone is adamant, he blames something that doesn't exist because the rating is terrible. ”
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If this is true, and there is no queue winner or loser, then the problem is most definitely with the player. It could also be that the matchmaking isn't quality, but that's also the player's fault. There will always be players who will lose multiple matches in a row in any ranked game. That doesn't mean Valorant's ranking system is broken. It could simply mean that the player has gone as far as their current skill will allow.
The Valorant team refuses to make changes simply out of reaction from the community that doesn't have the data to support it. It is difficult to say who is really to blame. It's true that Walker and the Valorant team have access to a lot more data than the average player. He made a point of saying:
“I'm not here to make a system to give you a free rating that you don't deserve, which unfortunately causes a lot of negative feedback. I can try to improve frustrations or experiences where there are known issues and investigate and keep trying to resolve for players who feel there are issues.”
The Reddit post indicates that they are analyzing data, player feedback, keeping an eye on players directly, and more. They will make improvements when the data suggests it is needed. However, there are issues being addressed. That's not to say Riot isn't doing anything about Valorant's ranking system. They are currently investigating the smurf issue and ways to combat and avoid the toxicity issue that the game currently has. But for now, they are confident that there is no problem with the Ranking System. We'll have to see if they walk back in the coming weeks and months. It's a very long but interesting Reddit thread which is linked below in case you want to browse it.
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