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Fortnite: Skill Based Matchmaking (SBMM) debate reignites, players tired of facing “sweats”

(Image Credit: Republic World)
(Image Credit: Republic World)
Modified 06 Sep 2020, 21:48 IST

Fortnite has had an awkward time trying to balance out its battle royale format to say the least. Skill based matchmaking was supposed to make the game at least partly more enjoyable for everyone involved by making sure everyone’s at least near the same skill level in a game, but most seem to blame the feature for making the game less enjoyable.

Does Fortnite even need skill based matchmaking?

When looking at the simple pros and cons of skill based matchmaking, it becomes a little hard for Fortnite to justify the feature. The obvious downsides include things like longer matchmaking queues, devising a system for ranking players by their perceived skills, and the potential for missing the mark by judging players incorrectly.

The upsides are supposed to be that players enter into matches where they are promised an equal chance at winning. However, even under perfect conditions, that chance maxes out at a 1 in 100 chance at winning, something that rarely seems worth it.

The other obvious issue with skill based matchmaking in Fortnite is that games usually feature 100 players. Skill based matchmaking is something that is great for one-against-one games, where a 50% chance at victory is achievable, but in Fortnite, it’s almost impossible to end up with 100 players even near each other in skills.


Nobody seems to be happy with skill based matchmaking in Fortnite

Another consideration is that skill based matchmaking doesn’t seem to be working for anyone, even those supposedly at the top. This is likely because of a disconnect between what the skill based matchmaking system considers a positive result and what the average Fortnite player thinks is a positive result.

The average Fortnite player doesn’t think coming in 40th place is a great result, but a skill based matchmaking system will consider that somewhat positive- it’s at least better than half of the players did.


For Fortnite players at the higher end of the curve, skill based matchmaking feels more like it's designed to keep them from winning by matching them with “sweats,” while those at the absolute peak have to endure longer queues as 99 other players are found to match with them.

It almost seems like Fortnite might be better off going back to semi-random matchmaking that allows players to figure things out one their own.

It’s not known whether Epic has any plans to change or shake up Fortnite, but if players are this unhappy with the feature then it will almost certainly be changed in the future.

Published 06 Sep 2020, 21:48 IST
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