Changes are in store for Season 5 of Guild Wars 2’s PvP, and ArenaNet’s got the always-contentious topics of matchmaking and rewards in the crosshairs. These changes will go into effect when the new season kicks off on Dec. 13.
How the game measures PvP skill level will be altered dramatically. Pips, the incremental marks between major ranks (like Gold, Silver, Bronze, etc.), will no longer be a factor in matchmaking. Players will have a numerical skill level that’s broken down into the various tiers. Your ranking at the start of a season will be dependent on how you do in 10 placement matches, and — unlike in previous seasons — you’ll keep going down as long as you keep losing, to “ensure that players are always moving toward their correct rating and are facing players of similar skill levels.” (As an aside, anyone else think this sounds a lot like Overwatch’s ranked system?) Rating decay is also a factor for inactive players. The overall goal is to provide a wider pool of players for matchmaking, especially among the highest skill tiers.
Rewards are also being revamped, and here’s where pips still matter, serving only as a way to track rewards and no longer figuring into skill rating. You’ll have more ways to earn pips, leading to more rewards in general, including additional gold and the ability to earn top loot like ascended gear.
Finally, personal score, as displayed at the end of the match, will see changes, and the Stronghold map will be rotated out while Skyhammer rotates in. You can read about all the changes on the Guild Wars 2 site.