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MMR Boosting in Dota 2: A Controversial Practice


Dota 2 is one of the most popular and competitive multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) games in the world. The game’s ranked matchmaking system assigns players a Matchmaking Rating (MMR) based on their performance in ranked matches. MMR is a numerical value that determines a player’s skill level and is used to match them with equally skilled opponents. Many players strive to increase their MMR to show their progress and skill in the game. However, there is a controversial practice known as MMR boosting that has raised concerns within the Dota 2 community.

What is MMR Boosting?

MMR boosting is a service where a high-skilled player, often referred to as a “booster,” plays on someone else’s account to increase their MMR. The primary goal is to help the account owner reach a higher skill bracket or MMR boosting for Dota 2 bracket than they would achieve on their own. While some individuals use MMR boosting to avoid the grind and stress of climbing the MMR ladder, it remains a contentious issue in the Dota 2 community.

The Controversy Surrounding MMR Boosting

  1. Fairness and Integrity: MMR boosting raises questions of fairness and integrity within the game. It can create an unfair playing field where players are matched with individuals who do not belong to their skill bracket. This not only detracts from the competitive aspect of the game but can also lead to an unpleasant experience for those who encounter boosted accounts.
  2. Negative Impact on Match Quality: When boosted players return to their original MMR bracket, it can disrupt the quality of matches for other players. Players who benefited from boosting may not perform at the expected level, resulting in unbalanced and one-sided matches.
  3. Incentives for Boosting: The practice of MMR boosting can create incentives for players to buy or engage in boosting services. This may lead to a decline in the overall competitiveness and integrity of the ranked matchmaking system.
  4. Account Security: Allowing another player access to your account carries inherent risks, such as potential account theft or misuse. Boosting services can sometimes involve unethical practices that put the account owner at risk.

Valve’s Response

Valve, the developer of Dota 2, has taken a firm stance against MMR boosting. They have implemented various measures to combat the practice:

  1. Bans: Valve periodically conducts ban waves to suspend accounts involved in boosting or any other form of cheating. Players found to be using boosting services can face severe consequences, including permanent bans.
  2. Phone Number Verification: Dota 2 requires phone number verification for ranked matchmaking, which aims to deter smurfing and boosting by limiting the number of accounts a player can use for ranked play.
  3. Ranked Roles: Valve introduced the “Ranked Roles” matchmaking queue, which allows players to select their preferred role and reduces the likelihood of boosting by forcing players to perform in their selected roles.


MMR boosting remains a divisive topic in the Dota 2 community, with arguments on both sides. While some players see it as a means to reach a desired skill level more quickly, it can undermine the integrity of the game’s ranked matchmaking system and negatively impact the overall player experience.

Valve has taken steps to discourage MMR boosting by implementing strict rules and penalties. However, the community also plays a role in addressing this issue by reporting suspicious behavior and not engaging in boosting practices. The ultimate goal is to maintain the fairness and competitiveness of Dota 2’s ranked matchmaking system, ensuring a more enjoyable experience for all players.

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