With Overwatch’s Communication Wheel receiving a massive upgrade in the 2020 Anniversary patch, players have more options than ever to strategize with their team without using a microphone - but there may be too many options for controller users and not enough space.
For the longest time, the Overwatch Communication Wheel was limited to basic commands like “hello,” “group up,” “need healing,” and sharing one’s Ultimate charge status. However, with the Anniversary update, players can now tell their teammates to retreat, push on forward, ask for assistance and even count down from three to initiate a push.
That said, there’s only so many available spots on the wheel, with players forced to choose between saying “thanks” to their teammates or keeping a command open so they know they’re defending the objective.
There’s a lack of space on both console and controller, and while special commands can be pre-programmed to individual buttons, it’s not the same as with keyboards, which allow for far more keybindings.
With a controller, the D-pad only has four possible options, and as more features have been added to the game, the more designating one of those buttons to a key gameplay aspect becomes a necessity. For instance, one button pulls up the Communication Wheel, another can be for switching to a side-arm and another can be “interact” - a requirement to pass through Symmetra’s Teleporter.
Redditor 'Gaelfling' took to the Overwatch subreddit to plead with Blizzard to add a second Communication Wheel, insisting that console users “need” one for the additional options.
“It should be on the main communication wheel (left trigger or right trigger) or able to be bound,” they wrote.
In the comments section, many fellow players agreed, even those who play on PC. “PC players need another one too, unless you're an alien with extra giant fingers you're gonna struggle binding everything on keyboard,” Nuu111 noted.
With the idea of adding an extra Communication Wheel gaining traction, it will be interesting to see how Blizzard approaches the suggestion, especially with Overwatch 2 still in development.
Speaking of which, Overwatch Director Jeff Kaplan did reveal that an Apex Legends-like ping system could be coming for the sequel, so that's yet another tool that will need to be considered when it comes to valuable D-pad real estate.