Esports insider Slasher has some suggestions for how to fix Overwatch - Dexerto
Overwatch

Esports insider Slasher has some suggestions for how to fix Overwatch

Published: 21/Jan/2019 18:44 Updated: 21/Jan/2019 20:10

by Bill Cooney

Share


The Overwatch League’s first match of 2019 is coming soon on February 14, but esports reporter Rod ‘Slasher’ Breslau thinks there are some serious changes the game needs to make to continue its early success.

Overwatch came out on May 24, 2016, and since then has seen massive success. Most recently, it was named esport of the year at the 2018 Esport Awards.

Advertisement

But in the face of all this success, Slasher claims that “the state of the game and the online ecosystem that Overwatch is situated in led by [Game Director] Jeff [Kaplan] continues to flounder.”

Slasher provided a list of nine items on Twitter he thought needed to be changed in Overwatch in order for the game to succeed.

Advertisement

Some of the first suggestions are for solo queue and role queue, two things that players have been lobbying for almost since the game’s release.

A general scoreboard for matches could allow players to better coordinate and figure out where to switch up the team; and replacing or changing 2 CP and assault maps, arguably the most unpopular maps in the game, is another thing players have been asking for.

Blizzard EntertainmentTemple of Anubis is one map that embodies many of the problems players have with Overwath’s 2CP mode.

Finally, one of Slasher’s last suggestions follows the lead set by Fortnite in 2018: Overwatch should incorporate cross-platform play to allow console players to play with and against those on PC.

Advertisement

Hero bans, an idea that has gained traction as a feature many in the Overwatch community want to see, weren’t included in Slasher’s list of changes because he said they were unrealistic.

“Blizzard is against map draft/bans as it shows players overall dislike for 2CP/Assault and puts on display cracks in Blizzard’s game design,” Breslau wrote on Twitter. “Same for hero bans in a game with switching that puts on display Blizzard’s poor balance.”

As Overwatch enters its third year, there are a lot of people who think Blizzard needs to make changes to its game if it wants to thrive as long as esports staples like League of Legends and CS:GO have.

Advertisement

Overwatch

Jeff Kaplan reveals his ideal competitive Overwatch meta

Published: 8/Oct/2020 3:13

by Theo Salaun

Share


Blizzard Entertainment’s Vice President and Overwatch’s beloved Game Director Jeff Kaplan has revealed what he thinks is the ideal competitive meta for the expansive title.

Overwatch exists in many forms, from its highest ranks to its lowest, but the game’s competitive meta at the professional level has also varied greatly since the original release back in May 2016. 

Advertisement

In the olden days, teams prioritized dive compositions led by Winston’s jumps and Tracer’s blinks. Then, in 2019, fans around the world either groaned or cheered as the divisive GOATS meta took center-stage, featuring a hefty squad built entirely with tanks and supports. 

Now, Kaplan is explaining his perspective on the game’s ideal state, following criticisms he levied back in July against the game’s double-shield reliance. Examining the game’s departure from a static, Orisa and Sigma-dependent environment, he dissects his compository ideology. 

Advertisement
Brigitte stuns Junkrat on Volskaya
Blizzard Entertainment
Barriers have held an uncomfortably powerful role in Overwatch for a long time.

As discussed in an interview with the Loadout, Kaplan is both aware of the professional scene’s interests and the casual base’s tendencies. Coupling those factors, he believes the game is at its best when there is some blend of high skill caps and diverse team compositions.

“The most ideal, healthiest state of the game is when the meta is somewhat fluid, when the meta is more map dependent or team match up dependent than it is static. We’ve all seen those moments when the meta has been completely static and all six players will just play the same six heroes every time. I think that’s fun from a mastery standpoint, but I think it’s a lot more exciting for viewers when creativity and curiosity come into play,” he said.

When Kaplan refers to a “static” meta, the simplest example is 2019’s GOATS, where three healers (Brigitte, Lucio, and Moira) were coupled with three tanks (D.Va, Reinhardt, and Zarya) and would barrel into opponents.

Advertisement

It took tremendous teamwork to be pulled off successfully against other professional teams, but many fans considered it more tedious than entertaining after months of gameplay.

In its current state, Overwatch is not completely balanced, but there is a degree of variety to it. That diversity seen in the Overwatch League spans downward into the casual ranks. Kaplan indicates that this is in line with his department’s hopes.

“I think most of our players would say in the ideal meta, all our heroes would be viable in some way competitively. I think as a competitive goal from a game designing and game balancing perspective that is extremely challenging, but it’s obviously what we strive to achieve.”

Advertisement

While he assures that Overwatch would be completely balanced in an ideal world, in the meantime, his team would at least like to push toward a game that varies to some extent based on coaching, player preference, and map.

It remains to be seen if current and upcoming patches can accomplish that, but Kaplan’s emphasis on “fluidity” is a welcome driving force.

Advertisement