Competitive Matchmaking Beta is here! Kinda…

Well well well well, looks like those Teamfortress.tvers have found something interesting. It’s a small version of the Competitive Matchmaking Beta! It’s actually a real thing! Turns out a small update yesterday added a console command that enables you to open the Competitive matchmaking menu.

The command, for whoever wants to try it, is OpenMatchmakingLobby ladder

Typing this into console brings up a new page. It looks like this:

Betas, yay!
Betas, yay!

Interestingly, it had a bunch of scores, and a drop down box. The box has a choice of either 6v6 or 9v9, which is unusual since everyone thought they’d just do 6v6. Friend names and scores are currently bugged out and display incorrectly. I don’t use a custom HUD (any more) so it’s definitely a TF2 thing and not a me thing. Game assumes that I’m a Scout, but that’s the same for everyone. I’m hoping that the more you rank up, the more hats the Scout wears.

6v6 or 9v9?
6v6 or 9v9?

The Create Party button brings up a menu much like the Mann VS Machine menu. You can invite players, up to as many as the game mode you selected. It works in exactly the same way, giving you a Steam Overlay from which you can invite friends. A chat box is also there for all your conversational needs.

Unfortunately, the majority will get an error when they press the Start Search button, saying that they don’t own a pass and can’t play until they do. This applies for everyone who’s in a party, so when I tested it with Davjo and aabicus, even if one of us DID have a pass, we would have been unable to play. Davjo breathed a sigh of relief since he doesn’t want to level up his Invasion badge.

Anyway, if you DO have an invisible and otherwise unobtainable badge, you end up on a Valve server. These next pictures come from the teamfortress.tv thread since few people can get in.

Source: Flame, teamfortress.tv
Source: Flame, teamfortress.tv

Hm, Well. Many of the maps seen so far have been older CP maps, like Well and Yukon. A low priority queue system already exists as well, since you can be kicked for inactivity. Queuing up again gives you a warning like this.

Source: Flame, teamfortress.tv
Source: Flame, teamfortress.tv

Also clearly this works on custom HUDs as well, as it should.

Interestingly, typing in the command OpenMatchmakingLobby without the word ladder in it takes you to a variation of the Quickplay menu, complete with all current game modes. The button to Leave Party just takes me back to the main menu. Start Search takes you on a Quickplay server quest as normal.

2015-11-06_00003

This is good news. The lack of information about matchmaking was starting to worry people. But now we have some sort of actual, physical (kinda) evidence, people are starting to have some hope about all of this. My only fear is that Valve is simply far too late with introducing competitive matchmaking.

Oh well. All aboard the hype train again. Make sure you put on your seat belts this time.

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