The long-awaited “Looking for Group” feature is set to be introduced to Overwatch at last.
Looking for Group will allow players to either build a group or search for an existing group of players whose aims and mindset lines up with their own. The system was added to the Overwatch PTR in a massive recent update.
The Looking for Group feature will also allow players to set certain parameters while searching for group members, such as the roles they’re looking for or searching only for players with voice chat.
As well as the social element, Looking for Group also in some ways imitates another feature that many players have been asking for – role queue.
One of the primary complaints about the general form of competitive Overwatch has been the inability to determine how many players of a particular role will be on each team. While compositions with a variety of roles distributions can work, if a team ends up with too many players who insist on playing DPS, for instance, it can severely limit the chances of success.
Players have therefore long asked for a “role queue”, a system that would in some way lock people into certain roles and ensure that all teams had at least a certain fundamental framework of roleplayers. Blizzard has always been resistant to the idea, however, as the ability to build creative compositions is a core part of Overwatch that they don’t want to limit.
Looking for Group will offer a compromise, however, by allowing group leaders to set role parameters while looking for group members. If you want to insist on having at least two “Support players”, you’ll be able to do that by finding people who are willing to play those roles – you can even lock those roles in, so players can’t switch out even if they want to.
While it’s not necessarily the role-restricted matchmaking system that some players might have asked for, it does mean you will now be able to find players a build a team with exactly the role balance you want before going into matchmaking.
Jeff Kaplan discussed the new feature in the most recent Developer Update: