There are plenty of websites out there that will give you a rough estimate of where you belong when compared to the rest of the playerbase. If you are relatively high ranked chances are these leaderboards will be fairly accurate, but for everyone else they are highly unreliable due to the simple fact that lower ranked players will usually not go and check their stats on a frequent basis. As such, for the past two seasons we could pretty much only guess how the players are distributed throughout Overwatch's various ranks.
Well, the time for guesswork is now finally over as Blizzard's Principal Designer Scott Mercer has come out to reveal the exact percentages for Season 3. What might come as the biggest surprise is the simple fact that if you have a maximum skill rating of 2350, you have a higher SR than 50% of the population! You can find the full post over at the Overwatch forums, but here are the most interesting bits:
"The data below is based on season 3 data (season 4 is too new), and the maximum (not current) skill rating of the player during the season. The values below are also rounded, so that’s why it doesn’t quite add up to 100%:
Bronze - 6%
Silver - 22%
Gold - 34%
Platinum - 23%
Diamond - 10%
Master - 3%
Grandmaster - <1%
Some interesting notes:
- Median maximum skill rating is not 2500, it’s actually a little above 2300. So if you have a maximum skill rating of 2350, you have a higher SR than 50% of the population!
- If you do a breakdown based upon the more volatile current skill rating, there’s even fewer players above 3000 SR than listed above. Only around 8% of the population was above 3000 SR for season 3 at any one time.
The matchmaker will no longer create a match above a certain win percentage threshold, and we’re going to turn this new behavior on very soon. When we do, you could possibly wait a very long time or even not find a match at all in extreme cases. To find fair matches quickly, try to play during prime hours for your region. It also easier to match you if you’re solo or in a smaller group. In a future patch, when we think we can’t find a match based on the current matchmaking population then we’ll warn you that the wait might be a very long time. We didn’t want to overreact and create a strict rule such as “You can’t queue as a group above X Skill Rating.” There are some locations and times that can handle high skill groups and still find fair matches for them. We’ll start with this new threshold not being very aggressive, but we can adjust dynamically if needed. When we do add the UI, we’ll also make the check more aggressive.
Moving forward, we are currently looking at our win/loss streak bonuses and SR volatility, tuning and improving our expected win % calculations, and other elements of the matchmaking system. Competitive Play and Matchmaking are two systems that we’re constantly working to refine over time, and as always your feedback helps us tremendously. Keep it coming, and good luck in season 4!"
While the stats are obviously the most interesting part of this entire post, it is the very end that excites me the most. I don't mind Overwatch not having a purely solo queue mode, but what really rattles my bones is when the matchmaker throws you into a completely imbalanced game because it thinks the 6-man stack has waited for too long. Sometimes you get destroyed because they are much higher rated than you, and sometimes you absolutely crush them because they are much lower than you, but its almost never an enjoyable experience. So to see Blizzard working on a fixing all of these issues is a great thing indeed!
And speaking of fixing, you'll be glad to hear that the Bastion nerf has now made it to the live servers on PC! The 24th hero Orisa is still going through testing on the PTR, but at the very least we won't have to endure the second Omnic crisis anymore! So if you were holding off from doing your placement matches because of all the Bastions, now would be the time to do them. Good luck!