Overwatch hero 30, the support Baptiste, is now available in the game’s ranked competitive playlist.
Baptiste is the latest hero to join the Overwatch roster, bringing the total number of playable characters up to 30.
Full name Jean-Baptiste Augustin, Baptiste is a combat medic who abandoned Talon, the shadowy terrorist organization featuring the likes of Reaper, Widowmaker and Doomfist, after realizing exactly what Talon were asking of him. Instead, he’s struck out on his own in an effort to make the world a better place.
Baptiste was released onto the live servers on March 19, but was held back from competitive play for a few weeks to give players a chance to get to know him before he appeared in higher-stakes matches.
Now, however, Baptiste has been added to competitive play. If you still haven’t had time to get to grips with the new hero, here’s everything you need to know about the combat medic.
Naturally, the most important aspect of a hero is their kit, and Baptiste’s has some interesting offers. A support with mechanical demands more typical of a DPS, Baptiste is ideal for those players who want to expand their hero pool with a support that has a high skill ceiling, though he doesn’t require quite as much precision as the likes of Ana.
Baptiste’s weapon introduces a brand-new archetype in the form of a burst rifle for its primary fire, which allows Baptiste to contribute to the team’s damage, but it’s his alternate fire that players should be focusing on the most.
The biotic grenades Baptiste’s weapon fires are his primary source of healing, replenishing 60 health to each hero within a 3-meter radius of where the grenades land. The healing grenades don’t self-heal, and they’ll also pass through full-health teammates, so you don’t have to worry about the trajectory being blocked by allies that won’t benefit from the heal – although you’ll still have to aim carefully if you’re targeting a specific hero.
While the biotic grenades should be the focus of any Baptiste player, it is possible to alternate between the two modes of fire without losing output on either of them, so there’s no hard in firing off some rifle bursts between grenade rounds.
To aid Baptiste’s mobility, he has Exo Boots that allow him to jump higher than he otherwise would. In order to activate the boost, he must crouch before jumping, which also means he can do a standard jump when more appropriate.
In order for the boots to “charge” to the point at which the maximum boost is applied, Baptiste must remain crouched for one second. This charge will also last for one second after crouch is released, although if players wish to cancel it more quickly they can do so by crouching again.
Baptiste’s Regenerative Burst applies a heal to himself and teammates within a 10 meter radius. While the ability does a total of 150 healing, it’s applied at 30 health per second over five seconds.
As a result, it’s more of a complimentary ability to keep Baptiste and nearby allies topped up without having to redirect his aim, or to maximize his healing-per-second in a big team-fight. Low-health heroes won’t necessarily be saved by it if they’re being targeted, as it’s not too hard for enemies to out-damage the healing from Regenerative Burst.
It’s also Baptiste’s only source of self-healing as his Biotic Launcher grenades don’t affect him, so be careful not to use it unnecessarily as you’re more vulnerable when it’s on cooldown.
Arguably Baptiste’s signature ability, Immortality Field is totally unique in Overwatch. Friendly players within its radius radius cannot take damage beneath 20% of their health, and players who are already beneath 20% health will be healed to 20% upon entering it.
The Immortality Field lasts 8 seconds by default, but it’s created by a generator that has 250 health and can be destroyed by the enemy. As such, considering its placement is key in getting the most out of the ability, as a vulnerable generator will be taken out quickly.
While it’s no longer possible to totally hide the generator by placing it under a payload, for instance, it’s worth keeping an eye out for places it could be concealed – either by teammates barriers or the environment itself.
Unsurprisingly, the most powerful element of Baptiste’s kit is his ultimate, Amplification Matrix, which increases the damage and healing of almost all friendly abilities passing through it by a massive 100%.
The only exceptions to this boost are “beam” weapons like Zarya’s primary fire, targeted abilities like Mercy’s Caduceus Staff, and “melee” projectiles like Brigitte’s Whip Shot or Roadhog’s Chain Hook.
While damage and healing boosts aren’t unique in Overwatch, Amplification Matrix is the most powerful. It does, however, require careful consideration about positioning, as projectiles must pass through it in order to receive the benefit.
It’s still fairly early in Baptiste’s time in Overwatch and he’s yet to appear in the highest level of play, the Overwatch League, so a definitive meta including Baptiste has yet to become clear.
One option for using Baptiste that has proven powerful, however, is to combine him with other heroes that offer a damage boost – such as the damage beam from Mercy’s Caduceus Staff, Orisa’s Supercharger, or Ana’s nano-boost – to set up a single, devastating attack when used alongside Baptiste’s Amplification Matrix, ideally with a hero like Soldier: 76 who can use the opportunity to pump out consistent damage.
Baptiste will be enabled in Stage 2 of the Overwatch League, which kicks off on April 4, so fans will soon get a chance to see how the world’s best players make use of the new hero.