Hearthstone‘s ladder system is once again coming under scrutiny, with the game’s top players complaining of unseen changes in how the legend ranks work.
Over the past week or so Reddit and Twitter have been awash with complaints over matchmaking and points at the highest legend ranks. So far, Blizzard hasn’t commented on any of the issues.
Perhaps the highest profile complainer was Kevin “Casie” Eberlein of compLexity Gaming. In a tweet posted last Tuesday, Casie highlighted his winrate after reaching rank 29 legend. He went exactly 38-38, a 50 percent winrate. Casie dropped over 4,000 ranks. You might expect to decline on that sort of form, but not to this extent.
While even slightly inferior winrates see players sink like a stone, things are pretty stark the other way too. Another player who won 14 games out of 18 in a session, a winrate of 78 percent, only gained about 300 ranks from rank 2830.
To compound these issues, players at the lower end of legend ranks are facing players as low as non-legend rank three. Those at the top of the ladder, within the top ten legend ranks, and still facing non-legend players. That means the points awarded for those wins are lessened, and the perils of losing are much greater.
Reddit is full of anecdotes telling the same story. Sure, we can never be certain what kind of sample size we’re dealing with, but it certainly seems like something is pretty wrong.
There were similar issues with matchmaking and laddering at legend a few months ago. Blizzard implemented a revamp to the ladder system, adding more stars and reducing the number of ranks dropped at the beginning of the season. The new system caused serious problems, leading to ladder being taken offline for 36 hours. It took the best part of a week for the problems to be fully ironed out.
With the end of the season just a few days away, players will be jostling for those top legend ranks. If Blizzard doesn’t make any immediate changes, it looks like that grind could be even more miserable than usual this month.