Powerful Overwatch hero could be the addition the game needs - Dexerto
Overwatch

Powerful Overwatch hero could be the addition the game needs

Published: 30/Mar/2020 1:02

by Bill Cooney

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Overwatch just revealed Echo in early March, but her unique ultimate already has players wondering what kind of wild, game-changing abilities future heroes could bring.

As is usually the case with Blizzard and Overwatch characters, we have no idea who we’ll see coming to the game as Hero 33.

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We do know that Echo is the last new hero until Overwatch 2, but not much more than that. So, to pass the time, Reddit user Goldhawk_1 came up with an idea for a tank with an ultimate that would definitely stand out as well.

Blizzard Entertainment
Echo’s Duplicate allows her to copy any enemy hero and use their moves, with a greatly sped-up charge for the copied ult.

Called “Rouri the Defiler,” Goldhawk’s hero sounds like a raid boss you would encounter in World of Warcraft, and comes into the game as a much-needed tank.

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Unfortunately, there’s no concept art for the hero (yet), but Goldhawk did manage to come up with a creative move set and a very interesting idea for an ultimate, nonetheless.

Before using their ultimate, Rouri is equipped with a shield and sword and is able to shield nearby teammates with 25 additional health. The base kit is pretty plain, but the ultimate gives the hero two different options that take their kit in two entirely different directions.

Blizzard Entertainment
Blizzard Entertainment
Overwatch could always use more tank heroes.

When Rouri’s ultimate is activated, the player would have the option to choose between making them into a shield or dive tank, with a kit to match. For example, the dive option would give them a large, two-handed sword and mobile, attacking abilities that greatly increase the offensive capabilities of the hero, while sacrificing the protection you can give your team.

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As you can probably guess, the shield option does basically the opposite. It sacrifices offensive power for a slightly larger shield with more health to defend the hero and their allies.

Goldhawk suggested that Rouri would stay changed in his ultimate until you switch characters but that might be a little too long so instead, it could remain that way until death, or for a set amount of time.

Arnold Tsang
There may not be concept art for Rouri, but this idea from Arnold Tsang could be a great starting point.

While there may not be any artwork yet, after digging through the archives, we found a Triceratops hero concept made by Arnold Tsnag in 2018 that seems to fit the bill.

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Just replace one of the shields with a sword and you practically have the hero Goldhawk came up with for their concept. Overwatch already has a hyper-intelligent hamster hero, so adding a dinosaur to the mix is obviously the next, logical step.

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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