Overwatch

New Overwatch experimental card drastically reworks Assault game mode

Published: 30/Jul/2020 2:40

by Andrew Amos

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Assault is the most hated game mode in Overwatch. Players despise the 2CP mode, often producing long games and endless ties. However, Blizzard are looking at reworking it, shipping a major rework as part of the game’s newest experimental card.

Out with one experiment, in with another. Team 4 are heading back to the lab in Overwatch just days after finishing tests on Moira and Genji with a huge rework on the game’s most loathed mode ⁠— Assault.

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Blizzard highlighted two major issues with Assault currently: snowballing, and “blowout” matches.

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Hate Assault? You might want to try the next Overwatch experimental card then.

“If Point A is captured quickly and aggressively, the attacking team tends to be better equipped to quickly capture Point B as well. Since the defending team was not able to charge their ultimate abilities after a quick defeat, they will be less prepared to defend Point B,” community manager Molly Fender explained to players on July 29.

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“Losing in just a few minutes never feels good and is technically impossible in our other game modes, whose mechanics force a more balanced pace to a match.”

To fix these problems, Team 4 had to target the mechanics of the Assault game mode down to the core. The game has been split into shorter rounds focusing around the individual points on the 2CP maps.

The two teams will attack Point A, taking turns. The first team will still set the pace, however there’ll be no attack onto Point B after capture. If both teams capture Point A on their respective turns, they’ll then move to Point B and repeat the process until one team breaks the mold.

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Each team will have six minutes in the timebank at the start of the game, and no extra time will be awarded for point captures. The setup time will also be reduced drastically to keep the game flowing, and spawns will be moved closer to the point.

Blizzard
All Assault maps will be available for testing in the experimental card.

Blizzard have labeled the Assault rework a “failed experiment” internally, but are still eager to see the community’s opinion on the mode.

“We are not planning to move these changes over to live game modes. We look at this as more of a ‘failed experiment’ with some great learnings and interesting data that we can use for this or other game modes in the future,” Fender said.

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If you want to try out the new Assault mode, it will be available in the live Overwatch client starting from July 30. Hanamura, Horizon Lunar Colony, Paris, Temple of Anubis, and Volskaya Industries will be in the experimental card map pool for you to test with the new changes.

Overwatch

Intriguing Overwatch ability idea turns Sombra into a Support DPS

Published: 24/Oct/2020 23:03

by Bill Cooney

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One Overwatch fan has come up with an alternate version of Sombra’s Hack ability that would allow her to provide powerful support to her team, much in the same way that Symmetra was once considered a “Utility” hero.

Any player with more than a few games under their belt knows that there are few things more annoying than getting Hacked by the Mexican stealth hero.

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Under its effects, you can’t use any abilities, and passives like Lucio’s Wallride are unavailable as well. But what if it could be used to aid allies as well?

A similar line of thought must have occurred to ‘Jupit’ on Twitter, who came up with an alternate hack that can be used on teammates to reduce their ability cooldowns instead.

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In the clip, which is not made with Overwatch itself, Sombra selects Mercy’s resurrect ability while hacking, which reduces the cooldown so she can bring back Tracer even faster.

Obviously this is just a rough (but well-visualized) concept for an ability – so it’s lacking in specifics such as how much the cooldown would be reduced by, what abilities can be hacked, and how it would interfere with her normal abilities, just to name a few.

As one of the most powerful DPS heroes out there right now, not many people are arguing that Sombra needs another incredibly strong ability. But it’s not hard to imagine how this could work if it did get added.

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For example, unlike Moira who can switch between beams at a moment’s notice, the technologically blessed hacker would probably need to choose between either hacking an ally or enemy each cooldown, which could open doors to vastly different playstyles that could be developed by players.

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Sombra is already one of Overwatch’s most powerful DPS heroes, so she might not need such a powerful new ability.

What this does make us think of is Overwatch 2, which will feature customizable skill trees that will let us upgrade hero abilities to make them more powerful as you progress through the single-player portion of the game.

Who’s to say that Sombra won’t have a similar buff to her hack available when the sequel does roll around and Jupit is just lightyears ahead of everyone else? For all we currently know about OW2 (which isn’t much), it’s certainly plausible at least.

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