Heroes of the Storm

Separation between casual and competitive modes: Fixing Storm League skill gap.

HeroesoftheStorm 7 - Separation between casual and competitive modes: Fixing Storm League skill gap.

Just about every game ends in at least a 2 level lead and double the amount of kills for the winning team these days. Its not because of the exp distribution or changes in the way forts give exp – its because the skill distribution on each team is so lopsided in the majority of games.

What is the difference between QM and Storm League?

Points and nothing else – the skill requirement is the same for both modes. There is no raise in difficulty to play Storm League and realistically all game modes are the same game, no matter what it is. Remember when the PvE brawls came out and some people said it was too easy and wanted a "heroic" mode? Thats what I want in HoTS – a raise in skill cap for Storm League.

An example of skill separation:

In WoW they have things like LFR, normal mode, heroic mode, and mythic. They have things like pet battles and mount collecting. They have battlegrounds and arena mode. The same way that they have a catering angle for different types of players in WoW, they can separate the casual from the competitive players in HoTS.

The idea:

Storm League should have a raise in difficulty applied to it through a shared experience alteration. In rankedwhen you are dead…you should lose at least part – or maybe all – shared experience for the duration of your death timer. Put another way, when you are dead you would not benefit from shared experience (at least in part).

So how is this going to fix the skill distribution in Storm League?

The people who feed the most in HoTS will continually lose their games and fall in the ranks. Whereas, you, who play better will both win/and lose just like you currently do. At some point the people who are of the same skill level will fall low enough to be gathered together in the same ranks and the games will improve because the different skill levels will be separated.

Wont this give zero chance to come back from a single death?

No, because if you are lower level, the experience you gain is going to be more meaningful. Gaining a kill (even shared exp when your in a different lane) is going to be more exp for the lower level player. Also, as you go along in the game, creep waves yield more exp. The players who are able to learn from their mistakes and play better will be able to catch up. Its not just one player dying in the game – players on both teams will die from time to time.

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What about roaming heroes who might not be actively in lane all the time?

As long as they are alive they get the shared exp gain just like they do currently.

Shared experience is what makes HoTS unique!

HoTS has *multiple** features that make it a unique game over games like LoL and Dota which make it different and set it apart.*

  • Multiple different maps. This allows for different heroes to shine on particular maps which effects drafting and counterpicks/bans. It also changes the nature of the PvP aspect of the game – you are forced into early PvP enounters. You also need to chose to "stall the obj" or "give it up" based on what map you are on. All of these things immensely affect the game play.
  • Camps. Camps actually perform a function in the lane. As a result, your team can play the "macro" if they get a camp to push down lane uncontested.
  • No last hitting. No need to last hit creeps to gain gold. There are also no complaints of kill stealing because you last hit an enemy.
  • Talents. In HoTS you dont need to hearth every 3 minutes to buy another item.
  • Mounts. You know how boring it is to watch someone play LoL and see them waddling back into lane after they bought an item?

This will cause snowball games because of people not leveling at the same pace. This will make games more unwinnable than ever.

So you mean that the lopsided games they have now as the typical game would go faster and you would get to re-queue and maybe get onto the winning team? Games would initially end a lot faster because of the increase in snowball. We already have uneven games as is, so all it would do on a temporary basis is to quicken these lopsided wins/losses which are already happening anyway.

I dont want a repeat of the PBMM release that messed up ranked.

This change in exp gain can be tested before its even applied by using A.I. Ranked Mode. This would be a special test mode for only bots where they will be able to put Elite A.I. down somewhere in Bronze and see if they rise in rank. Alternatively they would put Novice A.I. up in GM and see if it falls in rank. This would allow for a testing ground to see if the skill distribution of bots would eventually even out, and possibly give a timeline for how long that would realistically take for the real Storm League. Of course, this idea is predicated on the notion that the Elite bot is better in skill than the Novice bot. If bots arent really of differing skill, then it could lead to improvements in A.I. behavior at minimum. These games (since they would be AI) would not need to be at a normal pace, but could be played out at the highest speeds for the fastest results. If any review of a game needed to be done then simply slow down the game. They already have this capability to have games played in a faster speed so nothing new there. Its likely that someone who knows more than I do about math (working at Blizz) could come up with a way to show the moving up and down the ranks of the A.I. in this test ranked mode without the need to actually have the games played out. I dont know what sort of data they currently collect on A.I. vs A.I. games currently.

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HoTS has become far too uneven in the skill gap – its time to fix it. Make a true ranked mode and separate it from casual game play.

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