Rift matchmaking is a difficult problem to fix. Many posts have been made but I would like to humbly provide some analysis and (reiterate) some suggestions to improve the situation: What is the main problem with rift? In my opinion, it is (1) the feeling of an unfair matchup regardless of rift score, (2) rifts being too stressful due to feeling of loss after trying really hard and losing by a few points. What was the original intention of rift? For players to be able to design their unique puzzle box "daily" - defense nodes design - for other players to fight, and for attackers to have fun figuring out challenging puzzle boxes that test their collection variety and skill as an attacker. Suggested solution: To address (1) unfair matchup, a players attacking skill must be matched to the difficulty of the rift base. To address (2) stress/feeling of loss after a hard-fought, close, but still lost rift battle: the main evaluation metric should be the average rift scores in the week so that players who try their best to get the highest rift scores they can feel like their effort is worth it. Implementation: (1) Remove real-time matchmaking. Make rift like prize fight defense teams so that everyone is in the rift defense matchmaking pool at any time and the matchmaker can easily match a person who wants to play rift now with the same rift tier of defense team. It is critical to only matchmake within same tier i.e. diamond 1 with diamond 1, and non-realtime matchmaking makes this possible. This also instantly solves cannot-find-rift-opponent, 2hrs-is-too-long complaints. (2) To further improve the feeling of a fair match, separate rift ranks into offense and defense. A player, for instance, can be offense diamond 1 and defense diamond 2 etc. Matchmaking matches your offense rift rank to defense rift rank so that the toughest rift bases are only matched to the very best attackers. (3) Scrap rift rating and have realtime leaderboards instead. To make it manageable, leaderboards are only within your rift tier (i.e. diamond3 leaderboard). There is a separate one for offense and defense. The leaderboard counts the average rift score of your fights in the week, so those who play their best every game for the highest rift score they can get everytime will be rewarded. There is no instant feeling of losing after getting match results, since it is leaderboard style. This also helps players improve by seeing what rift scores they should aim for within their rift rank. (4) Mobility between rift tier is by the top and bottom few of each tier leaderboard for the week. Top few get promoted one rank and bottom few get demoted. the numbers must match, for instance, bottom 4 of diamond 1 get demoted and top 4 of diamond 2 get promoted. No more rift rating, just your leaderboard rank within your rift tier i.e. 6th out of 30 in diamond 2 for offense leaderboard. (5) Rift score leaderboard counts the average so there is no benefit to spamming rift battles beyond the required 5 rift other than rift coins. Offense score leaderboard counts your average offense score done in the week (attacker score - offense losses penalty - penalty for nondiversity in attacker such as using xeno twice even if you have two xeno characters). Defense score leaderboard counts on average, how poorly attackers do against your rift defense in the week (maximum rift score possible - attacker score + defense wins - penalty for nondiversity in defender). (6) Offense and defense leaderboard solves one complaint where people say rewards too good to pass up, but having to play 5 rifts per week is too stressful. Now you can get half the rewards by just having a strong rift base defense set up. If you build a strong diamond-worthy base, it will be ranked as such and give you rewards even if you dont play the 5 rifts per week to qualify in the offense leaderboards. (7) Rift rank decay only applies to offense leaderboard so this solves the problem of a real gold2 matching against a fake gold2 who was actually a diamond1 who didnt play for 2 months. Remember that rift base defense are always running (like prize fight defense teams) even if the player does not play. So a diamond1 rift base will always be rated as such even if that diamond1 player takes a break. (8) Pitfall: the need to address variability in defense leaderboard scores from rift attackers completely giving up, for instance, if this week I had 1 attacker give up from start therefore granting my defense leaderboard the max 32000 rift score and skewing my average score out of 5 greatly. This is unfair to other defenders who did not have a quitter match to their rift base. To mitigate this problem, a cap of say 10000 or so could apply to the defense leaderboard score. Attacker giving up completely is less of problem on offense leaderboard as it only punishes the quitter. Hope to get feedback and comments from anyone on my suggestion to revamp rift system and matchmaking.