Activision Reveals COD SBMM
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Activision Reveals COD SBMM Mechanics

Nathan Lees
Nathan Lees

In a recent blog post, Activision has finally shed light on the long-debated topic of Skill-Based Matchmaking (SBMM) in Call of Duty. This revelation comes as a response to the community's growing curiosity and the need for transparency in gaming mechanics.

Understanding SBMM in COD

SBMM, a system that has been part of the COD series since 2007's Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, is designed to balance matches based on player skill and performance. Here's a breakdown of the key factors influencing COD's matchmaking:

  • Connection Quality: Termed as 'Ping is King', this is the most crucial element in matchmaking.
  • Time to Match: Ensuring players don't wait too long for a game.
  • Skill and Performance: Kills, deaths, wins, and losses are all part of this metric.
  • Other Factors: Playlist diversity, recent maps and modes, platform, input device, and voice chat.

Activision emphasizes that the primary goal is to balance the skill disparity in lobbies, ensuring a fair and enjoyable experience for all players.

Myths and Facts About COD Matchmaking

Activision also addressed several myths surrounding SBMM in COD:

  • Streamers do not receive special treatment.
  • Purchased content does not influence matchmaking algorithms.
  • There are no bots in COD multiplayer.
  • Matchmaking algorithms do not affect hit registration, aim assist, or damage.
  • Playtime is not a factor in matchmaking.

Interestingly, Activision has experimented with removing SBMM, only to find that player retention significantly drops without it.

Despite the system's sophistication, Activision acknowledges the need for continuous improvement, especially in providing high-skill players with a more varied experience. The company is actively exploring ways to address concerns about consistently intense, or "sweaty," lobbies.

Activision's detailed explanation of SBMM in COD marks a significant step towards greater transparency in the gaming industry. As players gain a better understanding of the mechanics behind their favourite games, they can appreciate the complexity and thoughtfulness that goes into creating a balanced and engaging gaming experience.

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