Valve Introduces Rework on Matchmaking Hero Ban for Dota 2

Working for a better gameplay experience. Valve

The latest update for Dota 2 arrived late last week. While it's not what players were expecting, there are still some interesting changes made. Once of these was on the rework done for hero banning at the start of the match.

In a post, Valve revealed that they started with learning why players cheat and the most common reason seemed to be getting that significant advantage over the other players. One such instance was during pre-game hero bans, particularly during the ten-second hero ban phase which happens at the start of each game. According to Valve, the goal of this phase was to make sure that players can express which heroes they didn't want to play against while at the same making sure that players having small hero pools won't be locked out.

With the new update, the start-of-match ban phase has been removed. Instead, it's being replaced with ban preferences stored that are stored in the account of the players. In particular, players can load the heroes tab and then choose which four heroes they don't want to see in their games. The result is that they'll be able to join a game with at least one of the chosen heroes being banned. It goes without saying that players can change their list of banned heroes whenever they want.

Valve hopes that this new system is able to address the problems encountered with the previous system which are:

  • players can't forget to ban
  • players don't have to learn that sometimes suggested bans are ignored by the game
  • players are not on a tight clock to make a stressful decision that, in the end, most players make the same way almost all the time
  • Then there's also the added bonus of making targeted bans impossible.

Dota Labs

Early this month, we reported that Valve was launching what's known as Dota Labs. It's basically a way for the studio to test new features before they are officially introduced in the game. One of the upcoming features to be tested is related to matchmaking.

Here's how this new feature is going to work. When a player finds a match in the game, Dota Plus presents some information on how the matchmaker evaluated this particular match. For example, it can show the estimate skill range or even the player behavior scores. Players are then asked if they accept that match or otherwise requeue to hopefully be placed in a match that meets their current preferences.

What do you think? Are these changes good for matchmaking in the game? The new update also brings changes to items and heroes.

Dota 2 is available for the PC.

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