Overwatch is set for a radical gameplay change with the introduction of role lock, but it seems that players may already have discovered a replacement for the infamous GOATS composition which many hoped to see the end of.
Role queue may not have arrived on the live servers yet, but a role lock rule has been implemented for Stage 4 of the Overwatch League, giving viewers a preview into what the game might look like once players are locked into a 2-2-2 split of tanks, healers, and DPS.
While the change might put paid to the traditional triple-tank, triple-support GOATS composition, a new 2-2-2 line-up has quickly emerged that operates on many of the same fundamental principles, which some players are already dubbing ‘new GOATS’.
The composition uses Reaper and Mei in the DPS slots alongside Orisa as the main tank, while D.Va, Lúcio, and Moira round out the flex tank and support positions respectively. It may look quite different to GOATS on paper, but in-game they operate in a very similar fashion.
The “new GOATS” line-up is designed, like its predecessor, to rely on a high-sustain “deathball” approach, claiming space by brute force and then simply out-lasting the opponents with healing and survivability.
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The strategy was used successfully by multiple teams in week two of Stage 4, and former Florida Mayhem coach Vytis ‘Mineral’ Lasaitis has now produced a video breaking down the similarities between “new GOATS” and its 3-3 predecessor.
“This composition utilizes the exact concept that original iteration of GOATS accomplished so well. You close the distance, press ‘W’ into your opponents, and they either die or have to kite and give up map control.”
One of the chief criticisms of the GOATS composition was how long it remained dominant for and the fact that its superiority left little room for variation. As it’s still very early days in the 2-2-2 role lock era, whether “new GOATS” has the same staying power very much remains to be seen.
It’s also possible that the new composition remains largely isolated to the Overwatch League, as the demands of the professional setting don’t always apply to the majority of online matchmaking, so players dreading a return of GOATS in their own games might not have to worry just yet.