Regarding my post-rank normalization patch CS:GO matchmaking experience.

I’ve recently been promoted back to Gold Nova 3 in CS:GO thanks to having a pretty cool group of folks to play with and the fact that I finally figured out how to manage a stable 60fps playing experience on my MacBook Air and I’ve come to the following conclusions:

  • I can’t wait for the day when Macs aren’t complete shitboxes for gaming,
  • I may be have a toxic nature but if I mute people, I can reach obscene levels of zen,
  • I need to get better at entry-fragging on maps that aren’t de_dust2, and
  • I’m not as bad as I think I am.

Yes, I understand that the true ranking metrics aren’t related to the visible group ranking in my profile, but I can’t get over thinking that I am making some sort of progress. I have a few ideas on practicing to become a better entry-fragger on maps that aren’t de_dust2, and I’m going to be giving those a shot this weekend as well as taking de_dust2 out of my competitive matchmaking rotation for a little while.

If there are better ways to improve aim/skill that don’t involve buying a new computer or watching a professional player’s stream like a fanboy, I’m definitely open to suggestion.

Regardless of the effort that I put into playing better, I know that I didn’t reach this rank solo queuing all of my matches. I’ve played with some skilled friends who carry me more often than not. They’re pretty good, I won’t deny it.

Twenty-five victories later, I’m back in Gold Nova III.

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After playing at a casual rate for the past few weeks, I’ve finally been repromoted back up to Gold Nova III. After being demoted thanks to a Rush mission and finally realizing that I am just scrub-tier and not in ELO-hell, I’m back on the up-and-up it seems. And I feel like I’m playing better all around.

I haven’t gotten any aces in matchmaking or any huge plays as the last person alive—nothing montage-worthy, certainly—but I feel like my aiming and my reaction times are getting better. I’m making better choices with how to play the positions that are out there on… Dust II.

Yeah, I’m grinding Dust II for ranks more than I’m playing the other maps available to me, but when you only have to wait sixty seconds tops instead of minutes as the queues for the other maps are, it’s quite the appealing scenario when you’re trying to play as many games as you can before your self-imposed bed time. Or something like that.

But for the rest of tonight, I’m going to take a break, have another beer, and put my feet up. Or play more FreeSpace. Yeah, probably that.

Promoted to Gold Nova III in five victories.

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How this matchmaking system thinks I’m somehow good enough to get anywhere close to AK level of skill is beyond me. The fact that it’s promoting me within so few victories is also mind-boggling. I’m not supposed to be decent at this game. I play on a Macbook Air using the built-in keyboard and a laptop-sized optical mouse. I haven’t turned off, much less tinkered with, any of OS X’s mouse acceleration properties—I haven’t even changed simple things like mouse sensitivity or the model position.

Or is Gold Nova just the middling rank that I think it really is, and the real skilled players start showing up at the Guardian levels? I wish I had some sort of reference as far as player skill and past performance to matchmaking rank. Maybe even a little bit more information about why I was promoted in so few matches. Something like “The last four games you played showed a remarkable improvement over the four before that” or “Winning games against opponents of higher ranks has caused this promotion.” Anything kind of explanation would do.

Rising through the ranks at this speed doesn’t reassure me that the system is working like it should. I don’t feel particularly confident about this rank up.

Oh well. I could always go back to Otela and throw frigates away in duels on EVE Online.