Today’s Global Battle.net update has caused some confusion in the community about region locking and swapping, so let’s take a moment to provide some clarity about details that might not be immediately clear:
Why can’t I swap regions anymore?
The simple answer is, you are placed into the best match based on a variety of factors including player skill and ping. Getting more technical, it’s because the regions themselves no longer exist (at least not in the way players traditionally understand them), so there is no region to swap to.
But my friends all play in a different region than I do!
You’ll still be able to play with your friends in other regions. In the case that you’re in a party, our systems work to place you in games with the lowest ping and best skill level for you or your party. These changes are aimed at ensuring that queue times are minimized and that the average ping is relatively low.
Outside of gameplay, some have noted that General chat contains players from all regions. Global chat is no longer locked to a particular region, meaning that you can see messages from players in other regions. However, this has no bearing on who you are matched with in games.
All that said, we’re currently tracking and communicating feedback that there are certain instances where the ability to change your region manually feels necessary. This feedback will be helpful as the design team prioritizes improvements and future development of the Global Play functionality.
We have made a configuration change recently (post-release) that should greatly reduce the frequency of getting into matches with high ping. Many of the reports we’ve seen today of players getting into mismatched regions have been at incredibly high MMR as the system expands its parameters to find a fair match. We’ll continue to keep an eye on this and making adjustments as needed.