Today we released an update which also marks the start of the Beta Ranking Season which will run until May 14th! After the Beta Season we return to the previous ranking system with the same rank and points you had before this update.
Adding features such as the ELO Beta Season and Badges made the ranking UI super cluttered. So we looked into de-cluttering the ranking interface and make it more future proof. Here is what we came up with:
The ranking screen is now more focused on your own achievements and rank status. We also added some trend indicators. These show if you are trending upward or downward since the last time you visited the rank screen.
You can still see your standing among Steam friends or the World when you click on the rank section.
We also added a new screen which shows off all the badges you've earned. This is also the place where you can select the badge you want to show in-game when taunting!
Since the start of this year we've been working with Discord to get Voice Chat support in SpeedRunners. Now finally, after the update tomorrow, Discord Voice Chat be available in-game for everyone!
For those of you who don't know yet: Discord is a free chat client that can best be described as a mix of IRC and TeamSpeak. You don't need to install the client to use voice chat in SpeedRunners, but we still recommend getting the Discord Client and joining the SpeedRunners Community Discord Server. It's a great way to meet other players and to find opponents for exciting matches.
So once again: voice chat will work even if you don't have the Discord Client installed. You don't need a Discord account or anything like that either. It will simply work when you enable voice chat in-game!*. This will allow you to chat with your opponents while in-game or in a lobby. Voice chat is disabled by default, and obviously muting is also an option.
We hope you enjoy the update tomorrow; please let us know what you think of the ranking updates and the voice chat support on the forum!
*Except for Max and Linux. On these platforms, you will actually need to install the Discord Client if you want to enable voice chat.
Today, we will discuss the upcoming changes in more detail. The main news is that we will be introducing seasons. Think of these as similar to how the current league system works, but within a limited timespan. This means you will be competing against other speedrunners to see who is the fastest runner during a certain period of time. At the end of a season, you will be awarded a badge that represents the league you finished in. We're not entirely sure yet on the specifics, but we're planning on running a couple of these seasons each year, for instance by having a Halloween Season or a Christmas Season. You'll be able to get a badge for each of the seasons you participate in.
Soooo what's so special about badges? Well, aside from being a nice collectible overview of your past achievements, you can pick one that will pop up over your character when you perform a taunt. This way you can show off your past achievements, like that you've participated during a special event, or that you finished in the Diamond League during one of the seasons, in-game!
While we're excited about this new idea, there could very well be some issues with how we've set everything up. So, the first season in this new ranking system will be a Beta Season - meaning some rules and variables might change mid-season. This season will run for a month; from April 13th until May 14th. The badges that you see up here are exclusive for the Beta Season; you can only get one of these badges by playing ranked matches in the specified timeframe. Other seasons will have different badges, with specific badges for each season. To be eligible to get one of these you have to play at least 15 placement matches. After those matches, you are placed in a league that suits your skill level. You can then advance in leagues just like before, by beating opponents and winning matches. Finally, when the season ends we'll be handing out badges based on what league you ended up in!
'What happens to my current ranking score?' you might ask. Obviously, we don't want to simply throw away all the hard work you've put into getting into one of the top leagues. When the ELO update goes live you will automatically receive one of the badges that you may have already noticed on top of the previous announcement; they represent your current ranking in the 'old' ranking system. Also, after the Beta Season ends, we will revert back to the 'old' ranking system (your score is frozen in the meantime) while we evaluate the results of the beta test.
But wait, there is more! If you reach the top-level Diamond tier by the end of this beta season will also get this hyper-cool exclusive trail!
For almost 3 years now we've been running the same old ranking system. The system has been great for us. It has given some memorable moments from when the first player hit Platinum League. Or when Metanet01 got into the unobtainable Diamond League. This remained a feat replicated by only 8 other players to this day. Other than that the system also served as a skill indication, providing much better skill-based Match Making.
While the system has been good to us, it also has multiple issues. It feels a bit grindy and it could be better at representing current player skill.
The new ranking system
In order to solve the issues with the current system we've been testing a new ranking system for a while now in secret on the ranking server. This is an ELO based system. We are now almost ready to start a public test with the ELO system.
As it stands we're aiming to introduce the new system on Thursday April 13th 2017. It's not quite ready yet, so there is a slight chance we may not make that, but things are looking good right now. We're planning to run the new system for a month until May 14th. For the duration we are running the new system we will freeze your current score. After May 14th we will revert back to the current ranking system. At that point you can start playing in the current ranking system where you left off on April 13th.
The past 4 months we've been working hard on bringing SpeedRunners to consoles. Developing for consoles was pretty difficult and turned out to soak up all our attention. I am happy to inform you that we are through that now, at least for the technical part that is. So we are back to updating the game here on Steam.
Before we released the game fully out of early access we received feedback on the golden hook. The main issue was it being hard to dodge in high ping situations. Before release we spend some time trying to make the golden hook work better in those cases. We made promising progress but we didn't have time to test it fully. Recently we have been able to test it extensively and it's ready for release now. We look forward to your feedback on the golden hook changes.
During the last months we got messages from players being verbally abusive to other players. We've been gathering reports on this for a while now, but we did not have the means to act on those reports yet. This update brings a first version of a ban system, more info on that here. I also looked at the reports of the last couple of months and added bans for the worst offenders. We'll keep an eye on the more recent reports hereon after, so keep them coming.
Other changes involve the merging of fixes and changes we did during our work for consoles. Most of those changes is UI polish and small quality of life changes. As an example, you might notice we no longer have a timer in a lobby with only local players.
We have tested the build extensively but can never cover as much as all of you can. So keep us posted if you find any issues in the current build.