What happened to matchmaking in The Division 2?

Written 22nd May 2019 by GameGator

What happened to matchmaking in The Division 2? Thumbnail

A wild outcry occurred when it became known, that The Division 2's raid will not have matchmaking. Instead, players will only be able to play the game with pre-made squads. Prior to the game release, Ubisoft had promised fans that all activities in The Division 2 would have matchmaking.

However, late in May, a member of the marketing team for the game revealed that there would be no matchmaking and people could only team up for raids through friend lists, clan lists or by manually inviting other players before a raid. This caused quite some outcry, as this means The Division 2 will be similar to Destiny 2, which also requires pre-made teams for raids. As a result, players that have access to online matchmaking alone won't be able to join raids. Furthermore, Destiny 2 has a companion app making it easier to form groups, while The Division 2 hasn't.

The Division 2 top down perspective
No matchmaking in The Division 2 - yet.

It's not as simple as flicking on a switch

Players were mildly comforted by the fact that Ubisoft won't increase the Gear Score cap for The Division 2 as previously planned. As a result, players can easily join the game's raids instead of spending a lot of time grinding for their score. Chadi El Zibaoui, the creative director for The Division 2, explained why online matchmaking might not work out very well for raids. He not only explained that raids were different from missions and other contents that could be played with random players but also spoke on the need for each member of the team to have working microphones and speak the same language. Players also need to have the right gear and gameplay style that complement other members of the team when going on raids.

On their forum, Ubisoft wrote that raids require good communication between agents, frequent adjustments to plans, preparation and strategy discussions. Therefore, raids wouldn't work fine with uncoordinated groups. According to Ubisoft, they have tried the gameplay in-house themselves and realised, that a single player could ruin the experience for the entire team. Also, bringing matchmaking to raids is more difficult than players think and is not as simple as flipping on a switch - there are a lot of technical constraints.

The Division 2 shootout
One rogue single player could ruin the experience for the entire team.

How many players do you need to be?

After numerous complaints by The Division 2 players, Ubisoft later revealed that online matchmaking would be available for raids later on. The first raid, Operation Dark Hours has been met with positive feedback, but a lot of players haven't been able to join yet as they can't assemble a team from their clan lists or friends. Operation Dark Hours requires a team of eight players. Hopefully, once online matchmaking becomes available, all players will be able to join the fun.