Fall Guys Teams: Are Some Better Or Worse Than Others?
Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is a fast-paced, cartoony battle royale with a bit of a twist. Despite appearing to be a solo climb to victory, a player's qualification (and sometimes even victory) can hinge on teamwork.
Fall Guys rounds are randomly selected by an algorithm - there is no rhyme, reason, or predictability to the way players must face off against their opponents. Some rounds are solo platformers or marathon levels, whereas others rely on team cooperation.
In Fall Guys, a player can expect to be a member of three different teams: Red, Yellow, and Blue. One specific mini-game, Tail Team Tag, actually has four teams, adding a Green team to the mix. Unfortunately, this team is not in any other mode as of the writing of this article, so players largely overlook it.
All of the teams are equally balanced, according to the developers, as they want players to rely on skill and cooperation with others, rather than RNG luck. Within a few weeks of the launch of the game, however, a cultural phenomenon has occurred- players are beginning to make one of the equally-balanced teams worse.
The infamous Yellow Team in Fall Guys is no better nor worse than any of the other three teams. It is one of four randomly-assigned teams in the game, the same as all of the other teams, except in colour.
By looking at this alone, a player might not think the Yellow Team is all that bad - and they would be right. But, one look at Twitter later and that same player might believe there might even be the smallest amount of unbalance and inequality in the Yellow Team design. What started as a meme by the Fall Guys developers slowly started being repeated as fact across the internet at large - Yellow Team is the worst.
This might just seem like a memetic mantra that holds no water in the actual game; however, it definitely did leave a mark on Yellow Team performance. After the spread of the "Yellow Team curse" on Twitter, Yellow Team actually started underperforming in-game. Whether it was because of low team morale, self-sabotage, or everyone else targeting them, Yellow Team's in-game stats began to tank.
Players on Yellow Team were intentionally trying to let others win, to perpetuate the meme, and gain their place in internet history. Opposing teams were happy to outscore Yellow Team, as it meant pushing them further above the underdog team. Yellow Team members often became discouraged when some of their teammates just flat-out refused to play the game, eliminating all of the Yellow Team members from the qualifying round, and further embodying the meme.
At the height of all of this Yellow Team drama came a truly historical moment in both battle royale and gaming history. On August 18, the Fall Guys Twitter posted a joke tweet that absolutely went viral - they promised to delete Yellow Team if a tweet featuring a message from one of the developers got a million retweets.
Unsurprisingly, the power of the internet prevailed, and the tweet with a quote from game developer Alex received hundreds of thousands of retweets. It even scored the Fall Guys Twitter one million followers. After the tweet exceeded the amount of attention developers thought it would receive, they announced that they weren't, in fact, deleting the team from the game. In the spirit of the Fall Guys Twitter, the tweet was a joke - and a good one at that.
This social experiment had gone so far that even people who were once laughing at Yellow Team's expense were now groaning as bad RNG luck put them in back-to-back Yellow Team matches. The Fall Guys developers were happy to help by preventing the in-game algorithm from slotting a player for the same team on back-to-back matches, and after the air had cleared, they continued making jokes at Yellow Team's expense.
No more back-to-back team matches meant that player luck was no longer in the hands of their other candy companions - it was based more on the solo player's skill. This is not to say that the team aspect to Fall Guys is completely gone, as it still exists in the game. Since it was not a fan-favourite due to the focus on getting good team luck, rather than platforming speed or skill, this aspect of the game has significantly shrunk in size.
More updates are coming, according to the developers at Mediatonic. Player feedback and testing have put a new update in the works, which is set to roll out very soon.
Described as the "Spicy Hot Fix," this patch includes many player-requested fixes to the game. The first on this list of many fixes reads as follows: "Tweaked round selection algorithm to select a team game only if the team sizes can be equal."
This fixes a massive problem that many were seeing with Yellow Team from the get-go - the team always seemed to be unbalanced compared to Red and Blue. With this future bug fix, this will no longer be the case, as a three-way team match with an odd number of players will be skipped in favour of a free-for-all solo match. Both bad RNG luck and unfair team sizing have been fixed with only a few updates, which is ground-breaking, especially for a game so new. At Yellow Team's expense, the game as a whole has grown into something more balanced and nuanced.
This might have been what the Yellow Team meme was all about, as it forced players to become vocal about issues in matchmaking, and team scaling and showed the developers precisely what would happen if the tables were turned against one unfortunate team. This has not been proven by the developers, but it is interesting to ponder since all of these updates coincidentally happened just after Yellow Team's social exile.
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Whether Yellow Team actually spurred these changes might be a mystery, but what isn't is the Fall Guys player base's reaction to these changes. Fans are mostly happy with these updates, as they keep team games fun rather than the most daunting part of the match. Once, players were dreading terrible RNG luck or poor team selection mechanics, but now they can focus on more skill-based aspects of the game. With these new changes, the players will feel as if the odds are more evenly in their favour if a team game does come up. However, this doesn't address the obvious elephant in the room - what of the Yellow Team's bad reputation?
It seems that the Yellow Team will always be the laughing stock of the Fall Guys universe, but luck and player skill might one day bring them up to the winner's circle. Until then, players can keep basking in the memes, and enjoy the newly-balanced world of Fall Guys, which, contrary to popular belief, did not delete the Yellow Team.
Images via Mediatonic