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I've spent some thoughts, especially after my clan startet to try scrims internally and against other groups, on how to improve the current situation in Skirmish. Since the lack of custom servers is one of the biggest issues the Multiplayer scene is facing at the moment and Stacks of six people are stomping/dominating Skirmish, I thought of ways out of this situation. Well, it's not a way out yet, but a way to mitigate the problem for newcomers and others not being able to field a stack of 6.
The issue about stacks is and matchmaking in my opinion is:
1. They are way too common to face. If you play alone, you're easily run over by these voice-connected stacks who probably play dedicated in one team for more than just the EA period of bannerlord.
2. It forces others to counter stack to not get rolled over in public matchmaking, making this worse.
3. 6v6 Skirmish against other groups, formations and clans is a more fun experience then to get worked through a meatgrinder alone by these stacks and it can be quite competitive if you play more than one Skirmish, but rather five.
DR tried out yesterday extensively against RS last night, which was a fun experience for both teams. I think we planned to do just 2 or 3 matches, in the end we played 5, atmosphere was good, very respectful and the games were intense. After a little brainstorming I think I found a way to mitigate the problem if a certain amount of stacks are willing to join the concept.
Observations about the matchmaking queue:
1. If there is a team of six in the queue it will block one side completely.
2. Groups of 3 or less can be assigned to a running Skirmish in case there's a shortage of manpower there. The less players in these matches the more likely you get assigned to a running Skirmish in need of reinforcement than to get assigned to a new Skirmish.
3. If two teams want to meet each other and queue at the same time via countdown the likelyhood to meet each other is increased.
If not just two but lets say 4 stacks of 6 who would be enter the matchmaking parallel instead now try to coordinate each other it would mitigate the effect it has on the normal public matchmaking because these stacks then will not be able to stomp publics but rather fight each other. The boons are obvious: Real competition, getting as close to real competitive gaming as we can get for the current status quo. And not killing off newcomers to the game.
My idea how to improve this even further would be the creation of a dedicated discord server and to queue with each wanted matchup in intervals of 15/10 minutes.
Meaing: two teams entering a queue, getting matched, then the next two try it and so on and so forth.
I know quite a couple of teams are already doing this out there and if you coordinate this effort I hope that new players might not get frustrated and leave and on the other hand we can start to create a ground work for competitive play. I am not willing to give up Bannerlord yet, so I try to be constructive.
So yeah, this is my concept, feel free to share your opinion or ideas how to even improve it. If you're genuinely interested in helping setting up this community and try to improve the Multiplayer with the tools given to us at the moment, feel free to add me on steam or send me a PM on TW I will reply!