Hey all, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this, and would love to read feedback based on this.
I think many of us can agree that there isn’t a great method for matching alliances. At least, nothing has been 100% effective so far. And frankly, nothing will be perfect, but there is a way to ensure that match-making is more fair, and that you get paired up with alliances of similar strength. And so I want to delve into that quickly, and then explain where I think AW could and should go - moving forward.
The first suggestion is to use RPI or ELO. RPI (Rating Percentage Index) is a algorithmic formula used to rank sports teams based on wins, losses and strength of schedule. Under RPI, if you go up against a team much stronger than you, you can move up even by losing, because Strength of Schedule (or Strength of Opposition) is taken into consideration. Likewise, you can move down even by beating a team much lower than you.
ELO is a ranking system for players in activities such as chess. ELO is geared much more like cups in the raid system, where you take ELO-Points from the teams you beat. If they are ranked higher than you, you would get more points than if they are ranked beneath you but winning equates to more points.
Both rating systems are valid for this sort of approach, and so I want to steer clear of the RPI/ELO argument, and focus more on why these methods will work great for my suggestion for where Alliance Wars needs to go.
I really think we need to focus Alliance Wars towards “seasons,” like many other great games and sports. My suggestion would be that we have 1 preseason month, followed by a three-month season. We could do this three times per year (1+3 = 4 * 3 = 12 months). And we keep a record of wins/losses/draws and use one of the aforementioned ranking systems within each system. (again, let’s steer clear of the ELO/RPI argument and focus on how they could be used to create a fun and exciting system)
Furthermore, the off-season would be approximately 8 matches (4 weeks, 8 matches within 1 month) used to “rank” alliances with the new system. Once the ranking takes place, alliances then get grouped into a “division” for the season. The 3-month season would have approximately 24-25 match-ups, and all of the teams you face “should” be around your strength level. So you would play those alliances with a similar ranking as yours.
After the season ends, rewards are handed out based on placement within your division, and you have 1 month, to try to work up to the next division. In order to prevent tanking, last place rewards from the top division, are greater than 1st place in the second division, and so on and so forth down the divisons. There should be some guaranteed items, but also some RNG, so anyone can grab something good from a long hard fought season. Also, badges and avatars could be won depending on your division.
The main concern would be how you move from one division to another. And that would be solved with the ranking system. If you dominate your division (24-1) your rating based on the algorithms above, would be high enough that when preseason starts, you would likely be ranked higher than the bottom teams of the division above. And also if you finish 1-24, you would start the pre-season lower than the top teams of the division below you.
The other concern would be low level alliances. I think there should definitely be a threshold in order to join the divisions. Certainly something like 75,000 alliance points (this is an arbirary un-thought out value, I’d trust SGG to make this decision based on the # of alliances and their point values). Below 75,000 alliance points, you can have regular matchmaking instead of seasons and you’ll still have a ranking based on the above algorithms for once you qualify.
Depending on the number of alliances that qualify - you could have numerous divisions.
Stone, Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, Diamond, Unobtanium (the names are arbitrary)
and within each division there could be multiple tiers. Like Stone III, Stone II, Stone I, Bronze IV, Bronze III, etc.
Overall, I think a lot of the top alliances would love a ranking system with this type of divisional play. It makes every AW worth something, and as your alliance grows and progresses, you can track your ranking progress as well.
This idea definitely is not perfect, but I think given the creativity of the SGG staff and this community, this idea could be adjusted to fit this game, and make AW a huge selling point going forward.
Anyways, just my 2 cents on some AW suggestions. Hope everyone enjoyed and I’d love to hear other people’s responses.
Vengeance of Grimnir