One of the most common complaints, in the forums and in game chat, is that there has been an influx of bad players. This is often blamed on 5X weekends, weekends themselves, the end of the school year, or other real world events. This supposed influx is often said to be the cause of poor results and/or a string of loses.

But what would a true influx of bad players really look like? This can be simulated numerically with a very simple model and statistics from WotLabs.

First I defined a metric that stands as a player rating. I defined this on the same scale as WN8, since we are all familiar with this scale, and stats are available for this metric. In the case of the simulation, we assume that this metric is an absolute measure of quality rather than an estimation based on the WN8 calculation.

Secondly, I populated a player pool with 20000 entries based on the WotLabs statistics (i.e. 6% of players are below 300, 14% between 300 and 450, etc). At the high end there are 18 players between 2450 and 2900 and 2 players greater than 2900. A second pool was exactly the same as this pool, but 5000 players with a rating below 500 were added.

Two teams were assembled by picking players randomly from this pool. 14 players where picked for "our" team, and 15 picked for the enemy. The sum of the allied and enemy ratings (including our contribution) are called Ra and Re. The chance to win was calculated by the formula below. It is said online that this is the formula used by XVM, but I don't know. It produces a nice normal distribution around 50% and is as good as any formula.

CW= 0.5+ (Ra/(Ra+Re)-0.5)*1.5

A total of 1000 sets of teams were sampled for each data point. The results are shown below.

Our WN8 is shown on the x axis. Our average chance to win is the y axis. The blue line represents the normal pool and the red line the pool including an influx of bad players. The bars represent one standard deviation.

Two points need to be observed. First, and mainly, is that the effect of an influx of bad players is small compared to the normal variation expected from random teams. Given the large error bars, it is unlikely that anyone could tell whether there had been an influx of bad players. Secondly, there is an effect of such an influx, but it is an _increase_ in expected win rate, and that increase gets greater with your own skill.

In point of fact, there is no mechanism where an influx of bad players can result in a decrease in your win rate, under the assumption of random MM.

There are several limitations to this work. For one, it assumes a linear contribution based on skill, and that is probably not true. But it wouldn't change the result, just make it more pronounced for players with high skill. Secondly, the win chance calculation is not well established. But again, using a different formula would not give you a different result. The win chance is merely a statement that better teams tend to win more. Also, I did not include any possibility of platoons, but this would probably have little effect except for those darned purple pedder platoons.

I believe this result as shown is inevitable. If there really were an influx of bad players, all it would mean is that there are 15 chances for one of them to be on the enemy team, but only 14 chances to be on your team. Thus any such influx is a benefit to any player who is not absolutely terrible themselves.

TLDR: Stop blaming others.