Matchmaking systems traditionally show only show you a very small snippet of what’s happening behind the scenes. But Rising Thunder is trying something different — provided you’re good enough.
If you’ve played any modern multiplayer game that uses icons and levels for their matchmaking system — League of Legends, StarCraft 2, Counter-Strike Global Offensive all come to mind — then you’ll be familiar with the frustration and anticipation that follows a string of wins and losses.
“Am I going to rank up?” “I’m about to derank, damnit.” We’ve all heard discussions like these, and they all take place because the information that determines whether you move up or down is deliberately hidden by the system.
Rising Thunder, a PC-only fighting game from Seth Killian and the Cannon brothers (who founded the Evolution fighting game championships), was doing something similar. It had a skill rating and a ranking tier, but players were only shown their ranking tier (graded by Carbon, Bronze, Silver and so on).
The developers said they “don’t show your skill rating in game” last week, without explaining why. In the latest patch notes, however, players will see their rank compared against all players — provided they’re good enough.
“Legend tier players will now see their ranking among all players,” the latest patch reads.
Importantly, the UI now shows the overdrive and kinetic metres for both players. That’s a huge change when it comes to keeping track of your opponent’s options, which is part and parcel of the mind games that make 1 versus 1 fighters such a tantalising experience.