Can somebody please sort out casual MMR in Rocket League? Seriously, we understand the need for it, but the fact of the matter is that most people start off playing a lot more casual matches than ranked; in fact, we’d wager a lot of people still play more casual than ranked even when they’re grinding out to hit greater heights than ever before.
Sometimes you just want to practice your speed flips or mess around with new passing plays. To do those, you could always try doing so against bots or in free play, but to really get a feel for anything, you need to test it out against other people. Maybe you’re the kind of oddity that likes to exclusively practice in ranked play, but we don’t need that kind of stress in our lives - but doing it all in casual leads to issues too.
Rocket League: Can we do something about Casual MMR?
What’s the problem?
The issue with doing this is that you’ll end up with a hefty casual MMR (Matchmaking Rank). Now, it’s cool that you’ll work your way up in casual modes without realising, but it really messes with the matchmaking. Players who spend more time in casual than ranked will end up having substantially harder matches in the mode that’s meant to be less intense.
A player who is around Diamond level in ranked who happens to play with friends in casual a lot, can quite easily end up matched up against champ, grand champ, and even SSL players in casual. It means that your warm-up matches in casual might end up far faster and way harder than those in ranked, which feels like it defeats the object somewhat.
It also means that you can’t even take friends who are of a lower rank than you into casual. We’re fine with not being able to carry our mates through ranked matches; we think it makes sense, but not being able to mess around in a mixed-skill lobby in casual seems like an incredibly odd choice. It almost forces people to make a smurf account just to make sure friends of their’s don’t end up against far better opponents in casual, and we really don’t need anything that encourages surfing.
Could this be fixed?
To be honest, we’ve not really got a fix for this outside of some kind of proper averaging system or linking your casual MMR to your ranked MMR. It’s not the kind of thing that you can fix, at least not without messing around with the entire mechanic.
While we’re pretty sick and tired of playing in casual lobbies with professional air dribblers before diving into ranked where everyone’s flying past the ball, it is nice to be able to play against people of a higher rank every so often so that you can get a feel for what you’re aiming for as you try and improve.
Maybe you could make the searches for casual matches more granular, so that you could specifically try and play against people the rank above you if you want, or specifically your rank if you’d rather do that. There’s got to be a better way, and we really hope that Psyonix figures it out at some point.