After waiting for years, players might finally get a refined SBMM system, as confirmed by a Technical Director of Apex Legends.
Skill Based Matchmaking or SBMM is a system where similarly skilled players are placed in the same lobbies and against each other in a multiplayer game such as Apex Legends. The primary objective of using an SBMM system is to improve players’ in-game experience by making people play against similarly skilled opponents.
For games like CS: GO, VALORANT, and Overwatch 2, the SBMM system is comparably easy to implement as there are only a limited number of players. However, it is certainly not the case for a game like Apex Legends, where 60 players are involved in the same lobby.
Since Apex Legends’ launch, players have been complaining about the game’s poor SBMM system. Many people also questioned if SBMM even existed in Apex Legends in the past. However, a Respawn developer recently explained a little bit of how it works and confirmed making significant SBMM changes very soon.
Apex Legends Dev Confirms on Major SBMM Changes
Apart from casual players, even pro players like Snip3down are also frustrated with how Apex Legends’ SBMM system in public matchmaking is a huge letdown. Recently, Snip3down shared his discontent with the current state of Apex Legends, including the SBMM.
He also mentioned that even when he is playing pubs with his wife (who is a casual Apex player), they always get queued against 3-stack pred teams. Because of this, Snip3down can no longer enjoy Apex Legends with his wife.
Respawn developers are pretty active on Twitter and usually look for what everyone is up to regarding the game. Similarly, one of Apex Legends’ Technical Directors, Samy Duc noticed Snip3down’s comment on Twitter and explained to him how Apex Legends’ current SBMM system balances the lobbies.
According to Samy Duc, players are queued in a match based on the highest-skilled/ ranked player in the lobby. In other words, you’ll always be queued up against opponents based on the highest MMR in the lobby, regardless of your teammates’ skill/rank disparity.
Samy Duc also clarifies that averaging the MMRs isn’t optimal because “People contribution depends on the skill distribution. Easiest solution is just to take max because you can assume, highest skill player has the most impact.”
The main traction of the exchange with Snip3down is the developer’s assurance of the SBMM changes that are about to take place soon. The developer assures that the change will affect the whole SBMM so that matchmaking doesn’t happen solely based on the highest MMR of a single player.
According to the developer, Respawn will make these changes in mid-December or New Year. Samy Duc also confirmed that they’ll communicate more about it in the new year. The Eclipse Season doesn’t end before mid-February. So, it is very likely that we’ll be able to see the changes at the middle or end of Season 15.