Genius Overwatch trick lets Mercy protect Pharah during Rocket Barrage - Dexerto
Overwatch

Genius Overwatch trick lets Mercy protect Pharah during Rocket Barrage

Published: 19/Aug/2020 0:18

by Michael Gwilliam

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Mercy and Pharah are two Overwatch heroes that go together like peanut butter and chocolate – the two synergize with each other almost better than any other pairing in the game. As it turns out, Mercy can be quite the savior to Pharah when she’s using Rocket Barrage.

Rocket Barrage can be a tough ultimate to get value out of because of how vulnerable Pharah becomes during its duration. As she stands still in the air, the rocket queen unleashes a series of missiles that do immense damage to enemies below.

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However, it’s not cancelable and can easily result in Pharah being eliminated by a foe ready to pounce on the hero still in the air.

In theory, even heroes that are normally countered by Pharah such as Junkrat can easily land shots to her while the ultimate is activated.

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Pharah uses Rocket Barage on Temple of Anubis
Blizzard Entertainment
Pharah is very vulnerable when using Rocket Barrage.

Thus all said, a neat trick can actually let Mercy players body block incoming damage for the Pharah and let her finish the ability without dying in the process.

Twitch streamer Yourietje showed off this technique during a match on Kings Row. As his Pharah teammates activated the ultimate, he used Guardian Angel to fly up to the ally just as an enemy Widowmaker landed up a near-perfect shot.

Even the enemy Widow was impressed, using match chat to call the Mercy player a “god” and a “genius.”

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Using the replay viewer, Yourietje was able to pull up the Widowmaker’s POV. Sure enough, just as the Widow had lined up a fully charged headshot, the Mercy swooped in to take the damage.

Plus, because of the positioning of Mercy, the attack wasn’t a headshot on her, so she managed to live.

In theory, you should do this to help out your Pharah unless the raw damage that you’d come into contact with is 200 or more, as then you’re completely sacrificing yourself.

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After all, it’s not like you can resurrect yourself in Overwatch, but you can bring Pharah back to life.

Nonetheless, it’s certainly a strategy Mercy players should utilize whenever they have a friendly Pharah in the skies.

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Overwatch

Jeff Kaplan reveals his ideal competitive Overwatch meta

Published: 8/Oct/2020 3:13

by Theo Salaun

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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. 

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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. 

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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.

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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.”

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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.

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