EssentiallySports recently had an opportunity to interview leading streamer SypherPK. During the exclusive, Sypher opened up about various topics in and around the gaming industry. One of these topics was Skill Based Matchmaking, popularly known by its acronym SBMM.
The topic was trending on Twitter for a long while, with many big names taking part in a heated discussion. They discussed whether including SBMM in games is beneficial or harmful. Moreover, they also talked about how the feature affects content creators and streamers. Sypher has previously talked about this issue on stream, but he opened up in detail.
Talking about his own point of view, Sypher thinks SBMM is extremely frustrating for streamers. He agrees that a lot of the streamers are exceptionally skilled at the game, and it makes sense matching them up with similarly skilled players. However, he explains that when streamers play live for about eight hours, it can often get exhausting when they play against above-average players. This severely hampers their ability to create content.
He said that he understands the necessity of such a move from a business perspective catering to the casual players. However, he feels that developers overdo the feature in a lot of games like Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. Therefore, he gave an example of Fortnite implemented SBMM to explain how the feature should work in a game.
“One thing I’ve noticed, in regards to Fortnite is they’ve constantly been making changes on the backend for Skill Based Matchmaking. Even though they haven’t publicly said that. I can tell from my own gaming, that in the past, the skill-based matchmaking fortnight used to be extremely strict. And I would only go against players who were really good. Now it’s like a good mix.
“So there is skill-based matchmaking, but it’s not as punishing for players who are above average. So I think there’s a healthy balance i think i think it needs to exist. I think there’s a healthy balance and a lot of game companies are still trying to find to please both sides.”
Therefore, companies need to understand the difference between professional gamers and streamers. While SBMM might be an effective tool for competitive players, it could be extremely harmful for streamers.