That’s the ugliness of a black-box matchmaking algorithm: you are playing a different game.
We don’t know anything about how the game chooses your matches. That means we can’t assume both you and Starlite ever even have the same pool of possibilities.
What I have observed seems to support ideas like:
- Team power is a strong factor in match selection.
- Player level is a strong factor in match selection.
- Not “every possible player” is considered.
The last point is the one that can cause different players to see wildly different things. If you play an awful lot of PvP you’ll start to recognize several opponents. I have theories that something like this happens for optimization:
- Players have an “activity score” that increases when playing the game and decreases when “idle”, with some generous definitions of “idle”.
- There are multiple game servers and “activity score” is a per-server calculation. (That is, you are permanently idle if a particular server isn’t handling your requests.)
- The pool of available PvP players includes only players whose activity score is greater than some threshold, and is possibly limited in magnitude.
The concept of searching “all players” for an appropriately-leveled opponent with the right team score seems expensive. So the game’s likely doing work to cull “all players” to a smaller set that it can further divide into buckets so it can ask for 3 appropriate opponents quickly and cheaply.
I feel like we can observe this is true if we look at our opponents over a few hours. If I play hardcore for 2 hours, there are always 3 or 4 opponents that pop up 4 or 5 times. That’s indicative of my “random” opponents being pulled from a pool slightly smaller than it “should be”.
So if all of my above deductions are true, it’s very possible two players playing at the same rate during the same time period will have completely different PvP pools if they aren’t, for some reason, being routed to identical servers. Add time zones and play patterns to that and it’s very likely there are players who will never have the same matchmaking pool.
Given that, it isn’t absurd to assert the possibility that one pool has an abundance of one kind of team while others could be more diverse.
And given that likely factors in determining if you are in the same pool as another include geography, time zone, and play patterns, it seems intuitive that certain sets of players are very likely to either never be matched or frequently be matched.
THEREFORE, I argue it’s very likely most players in GoW have very different views of the PvP matchmaking algorithm.
(Also keep in mind the above is especially true for players across platforms: there is no way for a console player to face PC/mobile opponents and vice versa.)